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Prepare for graduation

Ceremony invitations

We will email you a graduation invitation about three or four weeks before your ceremony. This will confirm your graduation ceremony time, date and location. Your invitation will also include details about what will appear on your testamur.

Respond to your invitation

When you receive your invitation, it's essential that you confirm your attendance as soon as possible to avoid missing out on your ceremony.

The capacity of the Great Hall is limited and the online attendance registration will close once the hall capacity is reached. This may be before the invitation RSVP deadline. If you haven't registered your attendance, you will automatically graduate in absentia.

If you would like to assist the Presenting Dean with the pronunciation of your official name at your graduation ceremony, you should provide the phonetic English spelling of your official name when you register to attend your ceremony.

Guest tickets

You will be allocated two guest tickets, this will be confirmed on your invitation. Additional guest tickets are not available. Guest seating in the Great Hall is limited and will be allocated based on order of arrival on the day. Small children are welcome to attend the ceremony but will require a guest ticket. Once the Great Hall is filled, guests will be directed to the Ante Room adjoining the Great Hall where there will be a live-feed of the graduation ceremony. Ceremony live-streams can also be viewed online.

Making travel arrangements

We will not be able to confirm your ceremony time and date until you receive your invitation, so please make sure any plans made for your graduation before then (including travel arrangements for overseas family and friends) are flexible. We do not accept any responsibility for any arrangements that you, your family or friends make for your graduation.

Academic dress

At your ceremony, you'll need to wear full academic dress appropriate for your degree or diploma. This comprises a gown, bonnet/trencher cap, and hood or stole. The University is currently in the process of updating how students hire their academic dress. Check back here in early February for more information about this new process.

Each degree or diploma has its own colour or combination of colours. You can find more information on what you'll need to wear in the University's academic dress standards (pdf, 225KB)

When wearing academic dress, it is important that the tassel on your trencher remains on the left side when preceding to the dais to receive your testamur on stage from the Chancellor (or delegate). Once the photograph of you and the Chancellor (or delegate) is complete, take a step back and salute the Chancellor (or delegate). Then turn and walk down the stairs to take your new seat with direction from the return seat usher.

On the day

Here is everything you need to know for your graduation day.


Plan ahead and allow extra time to get to the Great Hall for your ceremony. We recommend using public transport or taxis as your first option for getting to campus.



Metered parking is available at the University. The most convenient place is in the Shepherd Street carpark building. Make sure you allow plenty of time to attend gowning and register before your ceremony commences.


Registration and gowning

You'll need your student ID or photo ID to collect your graduand and guest tickets. Registration opens one hour before the ceremony, at the registration desk outside the Great Hall. To avoid queues and missing the presentation of your award, we recommend you book a session and allow sufficient time for gowning at the Holme Building. You need to be seated in your allocated seat 15 minutes before the ceremony for the pre-ceremony briefing.

Locate the Great Hall.


Ceremony briefing

You'll be briefed on ceremony procedures 15 minutes before the ceremony in the Great Hall. It takes around 90 minutes for the entire ceremony.


Guests and children

There is no child care available for the graduation ceremonies. Small children are welcome to attend the ceremony, but they will require a guest ticket. The Ante Room adjoining the Great Hall also broadcasts a live-stream of the ceremony for guests.


Photography, framing and plaques 

Professional photographers and videographers will capture the moment of your graduation. You can view and buy photographs, in addition to ordering frames and plaques from GFP Studios. You can view and buy DVDs from Ambassador Productions.


Live streams

All ceremonies are streamed live. A link to view them can be found on the graduation ceremony schedule and live streams page.

Student Centre

  • Level 3, Jane Foss Russell Building, Darlington Campus

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Opening hours: 9am to 5pm, Monday to Friday.

Extended in-person opening hours first two weeks of semester and during exams.

Last updated: 24 January 2020

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