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Degree ceremonies

For Postgraduates or Undergraduates who have delayed their graduation

Important: Graduation Ceremonies Update (23/09/2020)

Graduation Ceremonies will be taking place from October 2020, these will be in absence only at this time. If you wish to put your name forward to receive your degree In Absence at this ceremony you will need to complete the College’s Graduation Form.

Students or alumni who are eligible to receive their degrees may do so at Congregations of the Regent House usually held on Saturdays at regular intervals throughout the year, (can occasionally fall on a Friday). The College Praelectors, are responsible for presenting students at Congregations when they receive their degrees.

Apply for October and November 2020 dates

  • 24 October – In Absence Only. Deadline to apply is Friday 9 October 2020.
  • 28 November – In Absence Only. Deadline to apply is Friday 13 November 2020.

Any member of Girton College who has fulfilled the appropriate examination and residence requirements may proceed to their degree at Congregation. The College will contact those students who it expects to present for their ‘first’ degrees at General Admission over the Easter Vacation and those alumni who become eligible for their MA degree. 

The Board of Graduate Studies informs graduate students when they have been approved for their degrees and asks them to contact the College to make the necessary arrangements to have their degrees conferred at Congregation. Please note that graduate students are not automatically entered for graduation – they must register for a specific Congregation using the Graduation Form (please see below). 

Students or alumni who are eligible to receive their degrees may do so at Congregations of the Regent House usually held on Saturdays at regular intervals throughout the year, (can occasionally fall on a Friday). The College Praelectors, are responsible for presenting students at Congregations when they receive their degrees. 

The College will not put forward anyone for graduation who has not settled their College and University bills. 

If you hold a Cambridge BA, you may proceed to the MA not less than six years from the end of your first term of residence, providing that you have held your BA degree for at least two years. You can take your MA degree either in person or in absence. The College will contact all those who become eligible each year in December via email and invite them to attend the Congregation at the end of March/early April. Although the degree may be conferred at any Congregation, this Congregation is traditionally the occasion when alumni return to Cambridge for the event and a special dinner is arranged on the Friday evening before the ceremony at the Senate House. Alumni must make sure that the Development Office has up-to-date contact details so that they can receive their invitation. 

The list below gives the dates of Congregations of the Regent House which degrees may conferred throughout this academic year. Graduands may be presented in person or in absence unless otherwise stated beside the date. 

Please note that these dates may be subject to change. If you have any questions or concerns, please contact the Tutorial & Admissions Office at  congregation@girton.cam.ac.uk 

Michaelmas Term 2020

  • 24 October – In Absence Only. Deadline to apply is Friday 9 October 2020.
  • 28 November – In Absence Only. Deadline to apply is Friday 13 November 2020.

Lent Term 2021

  • 30 January 2021 – In Absence Only
  • 27 February 2021 – In Absence Only

Easter Term 2021

  • TBC

General Admission 2021

  • TBC: June 2021 (BTh, BA, VetMB and BA with MEng or MMath or MSci degrees only)

If you wish to put your name forward to receive your degree at any Congregation (other than General Admission or the MA Congregation in March) you will need to complete the College’s Graduation Form. This may be completed online, but your application will only be processed once a bank transfer has been received for any buffet payments due. (Payment is required to cover any guest’s buffet tickets – £21.10 per person).  

Please note that graduation applications must be submitted at least 14 days before the date of the graduation ceremony or you will be too late to be entered. 

Once you have applied for congregation, you will get a confirmation email but the timings for the day will not be sent to you until the week of graduation. 

There is a strict dress code for all graduation ceremonies and all graduands must wear the correct academic dress; i.e. all graduands must wear the appropriate hood and gown and anyone wearing a suit must wear a bow tie and bands. 

We do not organise Academic Dress for Degree Ceremonies and your academic dress collection and returns from your chosen supplier must be arranged, collected and returned by yourselves in this instance. 

What to wear with academic dress 

There are strict rules regarding what graduands should wear with their academic dress. Please make sure you read the dress instructions document so that you know what kind of suit/clothing and shoes are acceptable.   If you have any queries about either the academic dress that you need to order or what you are going to wear with your academic dress, please contact  the Tutorial & Admissions Office as we can advise you email congregation@girton.cam.ac.uk 

Each Congregation (other than General Admission and the MA Congregation) takes the same format although the precise timing of events depends on the actual numbers of graduands to be presented by each College and is not available until one week before the Congregation when you will be contacted via email with all the necessary details. 

On the day of the Congregation, graduands are required to attend a full dress rehearsal at Girton College. Graduands should arrive fully robed. A graduation buffet will also take place for those who have booked. After the buffet and full dress rehearsal, all graduands will be taken down to the ceremony by coach or taxi. We cannot provide transport for accompanying relatives and friends, nor do we provide transport for the return journey to College. 

All timings will be confirmed approximately one week before the ceremony. Until this point we will not know the exact timetable for the day. 

Graduands who are not collecting a MA are allowed up to a maximum of three guest tickets for the ceremony at the Senate House and these are free of charge. If you are collecting a MA, a maximum of two tickets are permitted. The tickets are normally collected when attending the dress rehearsal at Girton College where attendance is compulsory. Graduands and their guests are invited to join the Praelector for a graduation buffet before or after the Congregation depending on the time we are presented that day which can only be confirmed the week of the graduation. 

Important information for guests

Please ensure you and your guests adhere to the following instructions issued by The Proctors’ and University Marshal: 

For security, safety and practical space restriction purposes, rucksacks, holdalls, shopping bags or bags larger than 35cm x 25cm may not be taken into the Senate-House or the surrounding grounds. If you bring them, you may be asked to make alternative arrangements for their storage.  If you need to keep your bag with you, you must seek assistance from a Proctor/Constable who my check contents prior to entry to the Senate-House. Please allows sufficient time for the additional delays this may cause. 

Graduands are entitled to join the preaelector for a buffet, which takes place before or after the ceremony depending on the timings of the day free of charge, Guests can also be invited to join the buffet at a cost of £21.10 per guest, which is payable at time of booking if this is required, children under 12 are half price and payment can be made by bank transfer, or debited from your college bill if you are in credit at the time.   

Please make your requirements and food intolerances known on the application form when you apply for graduation.  

The number of tickets you can book for the graduation buffet is unlimited and special dietary requirements can be catered for if mentioned at time of booking.  

All graduands will be taken down to the ceremony by coach/taxi dependant on numbers (Coaches leave from the back drive of College, next to Ash Court and Taxis from the main Porters Lodge at the front of the building). I am afraid that we cannot provide transport for accompanying relatives and friends, nor do we provide transport for the return journey to College. You and or your guests can park at Girton Free of Charge if need be on the day. The porters lodge can arrange travel for your guests to the Senate House if required but you are advised to pre-book. 

Due to the coronavirus pandemic we are unable to process any requests for paper copies of transcripts or degree certificates until further notice. 

 If you wish to have access to your official transcript electronically and share it on-line with other organisations for job applications and other education institutes you can access this via Digitary - further information is available here.

The University does not currently have any facility to supply a copy of a degree certificate electronically or in paper form. 

When we are able to resume the provision of paper certificates and transcripts, all those who have graduated in absence during the lockdown period will receive paper copies of certificates and transcripts 

All students are normally issued with one free paper copy of their degree certificate upon graduation, however, this is not possible during the current lockdown. 

One free paper copy of your academic transcript will also normally be posted to you within four weeks following congregation, however, this is not possible during the current lockdown. 

Paper copies of certificates and transcripts will be produced when the Student Registry is able to return to work in the Student Services Centre for all that have graduated in absence during the lockdown period.  

Original degree certificates are issued without charge to all those proceeding to degrees. A fee of £15.00 is charged for each copy of a degree certificate. The University offers an alternative design certificate bearing the arms of the University printed in colour. This is available to order at a charge of £40.00. For further details, contact the  University Student Registry Office

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