The combination of gowns and hoods differs between those who already hold a Cambridge degree and those taking a degree from Cambridge for the first time. If you are taking:
- your undergraduate degree from Cambridge you should wear your undergraduate gown and the hood of the degree to which you are proceeding.
- your second, or subsequent degree from Cambridge you should wear the gown and the hood of the highest Cambridge degree you currently hold.
You can hire academic dress for the occasion from any of the University outfitters in Cambridge, although we strongly recommend Ede & Ravenscroft. The Tutorial Office will send you details of how to arrange gown and hood hire alongside other information about your graduation ceremony.
Graduation is a formal occasion and so an appropriate standard of dress is expected. The dress code is strictly enforced at ceremonies, and if you do not observe it, you may not be permitted to graduate on a particular occasion.
You should wear a black, unpatterned suit (either a trouser suit or a skirt suit) with a white blouse, or a black, unpatterned long sleeved dress. Skirts should be no shorter than just above the knee and are always worn with tights.
Shoes should be black, clean and polished. Sandals (including shoes in which your toes are visible and slingbacks) are not permitted. Any jewellery should be small and unobtrusive. When choosing skirts and footwear you should bear in mind that you will be expected to walk from Newnham College to the Senate House and are likely to kneel down and stand up in a dignified manner in front of your guests and the Vice-Chancellor. Heel height should be low- stilettos are not permitted.
Full dress regulations will be sent to you at the time of booking. If you are in doubt about the suitability of any clothing for graduation please check this before your anticipated graduation date with the Praelector’s Clerk.