About the ceremony and your Degree

Elements of the Cambridge degree ceremony have their origin amongst the earliest customs of the University, and so the ceremony is still conducted in Latin. Degrees are sometimes conferred by the Chancellor or the Vice-Chancellor, but usually by a deputy, such as the Master of a College.

You are able to have your degree conferred ‘in person’ at a ceremony in the Senate-House or if you do not wish to attend a ceremony your degree can be conferred ‘in absence’.

When you graduate in person, the graduands are led in procession to the Senate-House from Downing by one of our two Praelectors. The Praelector presents the candidates in groups of up to four, to the Vice-Chancellor's deputy, announcing their degrees and declaring that they are worthy to receive them. The Vice-Chancellor's deputy admits the graduand to the degree. The new graduate is then presented with a certificate and immediately leaves the Senate-House to gather on the Senate-House lawn.

If you wish to obtain your degree in absence, your certificate will be posted to your mailing address in CamSIS after the Congregation has taken place. Please ensure that you update this accordingly.

The degree certificate will be made out in your name exactly as it appears in the University records unless evidence of a mistake or of a formal change of name is submitted. Any such evidence should be sent to graduation@dow.cam.ac.uk without delay.

Please Note: that photography is not permitted inside the Senate-House and that mobile phones and pagers must be switched off or muted.

For further information about the graduation ceremony visit the University website.

Conferment of degrees at ceremonies throughout the year

If you wish to obtain your degree, the Praelector will be glad to arrange for your degree to be conferred on any of the dates below (subject to approval by the Board of Graduate Studies):


Ordinary ceremonies: 26 January, 23 February, 30 March, 27 April, 19 July, 26 October, 30 November

MA Graduation: 18 May (conferment of MAs for Downing 2012 Matriculands and EMBAs)

General Admission, GA: 28 June (for BA, MEng, MMath, MSci, VetMB, MusB and BTh Degrees only)


Ordinary ceremonies: 25 January, 22 February, 28 March, 25 April, 17 July

MA Graduation: 16 May (conferment of MAs for Downing 2013 Matriculands and EMBAs)

General Admission, GA: 26 June (for BA, MEng, MMath, MSci, VetMB, MusB and BTh Degrees only)

Dates for the 2021 Academic year are not yet available.

Senate House Security Information

To ensure that your visit to the University is as safe as possible, enhanced security procedures have been implemented.

We will not allow rucksacks, holdalls, shopping bags or bags larger than 35cm x 25cm into the Senate House or the surrounding grounds. If you bring them to the Congregation/Honorary Degree Ceremony, you will be asked to make alternative arrangements for their storage or may be denied entry to the event. If you need to keep your bag with you, you must seek assistance from a Proctor/Constable who will check contents prior to entry to the Senate House.

Please allow sufficient time for the additional delays this may cause

Please note, currently only GA is booked through your CamSIS self-service page.