Dress Code

The Proctors have given notice that anybody of inappropriate appearance will not be allowed to proceed to their degree. The College strictly enforces this rule.

‘Appropriate academic gown and hood’

Candidates for the BA wear undergraduate college gown and BA hood. Those graduating as BA and MEng or MSci wear undergraduate college gown with the hood of their Masters.

Cambridge graduates wear the gown and hood of the highest Cambridge degree already held.

Graduate students without a Cambridge degree wear, if 24 years or older, an MA status gown and the hood of the degree they are about to have conferred or, if 23 years and younger, a BA status gown and the hood of the degree about to be conferred.

Dress Option One

Black dinner jacket and long trousers, plain full length white shirt (dress or ordinary, wing collar or standard collar); white bow tie; academic bands; plain black covered shoes without buckles (both toes and heels must be covered, no boots); black socks; with appropriate academic gown and hood.

Dress Option Two

Plain black dress or suit (includes trouser suits) or black skirt and white blouse, all worn with long sleeves, black or flesh coloured stockings; plain black covered shoes without buckles (both toes and heels must be covered, no boots), with appropriate academic gown and hood. Knees and elbows must be covered at all times (i.e. no mini skirts etc.). Please note that graduands kneel for the ceremony. The hood hangs better attached to a jacket than to a blouse.

All graduands should note the following:

All garments must be of one colour only; checked, stripey or similar garments are not acceptable.

National dress is no longer permitted and military uniform only in exceptional circumstances with the express permission of the University Proctors. The University strongly encourages presenting a simple, formal style of dress to be shared by all those taking degrees as equals.

“White” means white (not cream or similar), “black” means black (not dark brown, blue or grey). Facial jewellery, other than one pair of stud earrings (i.e. one stud in each ear), is not permitted. Other jewellery (bracelets, chunky rings and ornate watches) are considered inappropriate and should not be worn (jewellery hanging from the neck but confined within the shirt or blouse is acceptable if it is congruous with the attire). Exaggerated hairstyles or colours and highly coloured nails are not acceptable.

Please ensure that you make your hiring arrangements in good time and that you follow these instructions carefully as the Proctors make a careful inspection on the day. The overall effect should be formal and tidy.

Academical dress hire

Academical dress may be hired from any of the three main academic hire companies: