About graduation

What is graduation?

Your graduation ceremony is a special occasion to celebrate your achievements and acts as a bridge between the end of your studies and the beginning of the next stage of your life.

When is graduation?

Our graduation ceremonies are held in January and July and most undergraduate students will graduate in July.

Our next graduation ceremonies for the class of 2024 will take place on:

  • Tuesday 16 July 2024
  • Wednesday 17 July 2024
  • Thursday 18 July 2024
  • Friday 19 July 2024

Where are graduation ceremonies held?

We hold our ceremonies in De Montfort Hall, Leicester's largest music and performance venue, right next to campus.

What do you do at a graduation ceremony?

Graduation is the one time when you are required to wear the traditional academic dress of a gown, hood and hat. You hire your gown, hood and hat for the ceremony, collecting them from campus on the day. When your name is read out during the ceremony, you walk across the stage and shake hands with the ceremony’s Presiding Officer.

When will I receive my certificate?

Immediately after the ceremony, while you are still in De Montfort Hall, you will be asked to remain in your seat and then you will be given your graduation documents: your actual degree certificate and transcript. Look after them - there is a charge to replace them. If you do need to replace your documents, you can do so via the University shop.

I can’t attend my graduation ceremony, will I still receive my certificate?

If you cannot attend your graduation ceremony, or you do not wish to, you can graduate “in absentia”. This means that you choose to graduate without attending a ceremony and in such cases your certificate and transcript (if applicable) will be sent by post to the address you have provided.

What happens if I’m not awarded in time for graduation?

All students who are invited to graduate should register for their ceremony by the deadline, even if they are not yet awarded.

In the event that you are not awarded in time to graduate this time, the graduation team will update your record to show this and ensure you are invited to a future ceremony once you have successfully completed your studies. If you have already booked your academic dress, you will need to contact Ede & Ravenscroft to cancel your booking and arrange a refund. We recommend you do this as soon as possible so you do not incur cancellation charges.

Am I eligible to graduate if I am completing a CPD (Continuing Professional Development) or other short credits only course?

In order to attend graduation you need to have completed a full degree or obtained enough credits within your degree to be given an award in line with our Senate Regulations. Standalone CPD or other short credits only courses do not qualify on this basis. However your school will organise formal certification upon completion of your course and should be in contact with you with more information at that stage.

How to prepare for graduation

How do I register to attend?

Students who are eligible to attend a graduation ceremony will be invited to complete graduation registration online through My Student Record. You will receive an email to your University and personal email address with further information, including relevant deadlines. 

You need to ensure you complete this, even if you are not planning on attending a ceremony.

What should I wear?

You must wear full academic dress for your ceremony. This consists of:

  • gown
  • hood
  • hat

The colour and style of your hood indicates what sort of qualification you are receiving: for example red/grey for a BA or red/blue for a BSc.

You order your academic dress from our supplier Ede and Ravenscroft before the ceremony and collect it on campus on the day. You must order your gown by their deadline. If you do not order your academic dress in time, it won't be available on the day and you will not be able to take part in the ceremony. (You will still receive your degree).

You can wear your hat throughout the day, and you will want to wear it for your official photos, but during the ceremony itself, please take it off, and leave it on your seat when you get up to go onto the stage.

Your graduation ceremony is a formal event, so clothing underneath your graduation robes should be smart. As a general guide, imagine you are going to a quite formal wedding. 

You should wear a shirt and tie or smart top/blouse, with smart trousers or skirt, or a suit or suitable dress.

You should wear smart, formal shoes. Bear in mind that you will be going up and down some steep steps and walking fairly swiftly across the stage, so choose something sensible in terms of heels!

Please do not wear the following clothing:

  • jeans or denim
  • casual footwear such as trainers, plimsolls or flip-flops
  • shorts
  • T-shirts, sportswear or other casual tops

If your clothing is unsuitable, you may be turned away and unable to take part in the ceremony (you will still receive your degree).

What time should I arrive?

You will need to allow plenty of time for parking (if travelling by car), collecting your gown from the Charles Wilson Sports Hall, and walking to De Montfort Hall (a 10-15 minute walk from campus).

All graduating students should arrive at De Montfort Hall in their gown one hour before their ceremony starts, and you must be in your seat 15 minutes before the ceremony starts. Ceremonies start on time and unfortunately if you have not taken your seat before the ceremony starts, neither you nor your guests will be able to enter the auditorium until an appropriate break in the ceremony.

Where do I need to go?

You should make your way to campus first to collect your gown from the Charles Wilson Sports Hall.

When you arrive at De Montfort Hall, you need to check-in at the Graduands’ Entrance, which is to the left side. You will then be given your ticket and shown to your seat.

Your official photography will be taking place on campus (location to be confirmed) and your school/departmental reception will usually take place in the marquee on Centenary Square unless your school/department make separate arrangements. 

What do I need to do once inside the Hall?

When it’s time to confer the degrees, stewards will usher graduands from your seats one row at a time and take you to the side of the stage. Please leave any belongings, including your programme and your hat, on your seat. If you have mobility difficulties, arrangements will be made to ensure you are at the side of the stage at the right time.

When your name is called out, you simply walk to the Presiding Officer, shake their hand, and cross to the other side of the stage where stewards are waiting to usher you back to your seat.

The Presiding Officer may say a few words of congratulations to you if you have won a prize or you are receiving a PhD. Please do not take selfies on stage or give the Presiding Officer a hug. Sorry - we know you're excited, but we have a lot of graduands to get through.

Can a nickname/preferred name be read out when I cross the stage?

Unfortunately we are only able to read out your official name. Preferred names will not be read out and will not appear on your awarding documents as these must match your legally recognised name in order to be valid.

What items can I bring?

For security and space reasons, we ask that you and your guests only bring items that are necessary. Large bags (bigger than A4 in size), luggage, flowers, balloons, bottles of alcohol and large cuddly toys are not allowed in the auditorium and will need to be left in the supervised, covered luggage store outside of De Montfort Hall. Baby changing bags are allowed but there is no space for pushchairs/buggies or baby car seats so children under 3 years of age must be carried. 

Items are accepted at the owner’s risk and neither the Hall nor the University can accept responsibility for any loss or damage.

My contact details have changed, what’s the best way to let you know?

If any of your contact details change before your graduation ceremony, please let us know by emailing with your full name and student ID number.

I'm appealing my result, what should I do about graduation?

If you have submitted an appeal and may be due to graduate in an up coming ceremony, you are encouraged to attend graduation to celebrate your achievements with your cohort. Please note you will not receive your degree certificate until your appeal has been concluded.

If you would prefer to wait until your appeal has concluded before attending a ceremony, please contact the graduation team as soon as possible to request to defer your attendance. 

If you are appealing to rescind your award and continue with your studies, and your appeal is concluded and successful prior to your graduation ceremony, you will no longer be expected to attend. Instead you will be invited to a future ceremony once you have been awarded.

Will my name and prizes appear in the graduation brochure?

The graduation brochure (also referred to as the degree programme) will include your name in the list of awardees for your programme providing you are marked as a finalist ahead of the upcoming ceremonies and have received an award in a timely fashion after the academic boards have concluded.  

If you are a late awardee not originally expected to graduate during the upcoming ceremonies, or otherwise have been added back into a ceremony at a later date (e.g. after paying your tuition fees or following an appeal outcome) it is possible that your name will not be in the graduation brochure. This is because the brochures are printed in mid December for January graduation ceremonies / early July for July graduation ceremonies.

Whether a prize is published in the brochure depends on the nature of the prize. If you are unsure you should contact your department to see if your prize qualifies for entry into the graduation brochure.

After graduation

Can I request to extend my IT account?

Extensions will only be considered following strict criteria. We can extend your IT access if any of the following situations apply to you:

  1. You have an unconditional offer for further undergraduate/ postgraduate study at the University of Leicester to commence shortly after graduation. Please note, if you are going on to study as a postgraduate researcher, you will be issued with a staff account when you begin study and so your student account will not be extended.
  2. You have an ongoing complaint or appeal with the university.

If either of these scenarios apply, please contact and we will consider your request.

What happens to my student IT account after I graduate?

Your University of Leicester student IT account will expire in the month following your graduation date. After this date you will no longer have access to university email, files, and other IT systems. You should ensure that you have taken copies of any files or emails that you may need before your account expires.

Information about guests

Who attends graduation?

You can bring along guests, although tickets are limited because a lot of other students will be graduating at the same time. Our ceremonies are also livestreamed online so anyone who can't attend can still watch you graduate from home, or at one of our livestreaming locations on campus.

The ceremony begins with a procession of senior University staff who all sit on the stage throughout the ceremony. There may also be someone receiving an Honorary Degree, who will give a speech. This is a person with a local connection, (maybe they were born in Leicester, or studied here) who has achieved great distinction in their field.

How many guests can I bring?

When confirming your attendance at your graduation ceremony, you will be asked how many guest tickets you would like. We aim to provide two guest tickets to all graduates, and you can request up to four guest tickets in total, but due to limited seating this may not be possible. 

If you have more guests attending than you receive allocated seats for, only those with tickets will be able to enter the ceremony. However, your additional guests are more than welcome to join you on campus for other celebrations throughout the day, and can watch the livestream of the ceremony on campus. 

Do my guests have to sit together?

Guests will usually be allocated seats together. It is important that guests sit in the correct seats since they have all been allocated in advance. If you require for your guests to sit apart from each other then please email and explain the reason for this. While we will consider your request in exceptional circumstances, please note separation cannot be guaranteed. It will also depend on how many guest tickets we are able to allocate based on the size of the ceremony, as well as how far in advance you make us aware.

Is there any etiquette to follow during a ceremony?

This is a momentous occasion for you and your families and of course reason to celebrate. We kindly request you to be quiet and respectful during the ceremony and to refrain from talking or making any noise that might disturb the proceedings. Please also silence your mobile phones and other electronic devices.


Can my child/children accompany me into the ceremony?

Children cannot sit either beside a graduating student or on their knee.

If you wish for your child/children to attend the ceremony then a guest ticket must be requested for them (where they are 3 years old or above). They must also be accompanied by another adult guest.

Children in attendance under the age of 3 (2 and under) do not need to be allocated a guest seat as they can sit on a guest’s knee. Please keep in mind the formal nature of the event and the long period of sitting required when deciding whether to bring a young child/children as guests.

Can I change the number of tickets I have requested?

Yes, you can. Whilst the registration period is still open, you can amend your number of tickets online through your My Student Record. If you are not able to do this, or the registration period has closed, please email

If you are requesting more tickets, we will not be able to guarantee that this will be possible, but we will see what we can do.

When will I receive confirmation of the number of tickets I have been allocated?

Your guest tickets will be emailed to you at least one week before your ceremony. All students are guaranteed up to two guest tickets (provided you confirmed this during the registration process) and any extra tickets that you have requested that have been able to be allocated will be included in this email.

Please remember to share these with your guests, as they will need to present these at the venue to allow them entry.

If I am only allocated two tickets but more of my family/friends would like to attend, is that okay?

Yes, if you have guests who would like to share your special day with you but who do not have tickets for the ceremony at De Montfort Hall, they are very welcome to visit campus on the day and celebrate your graduation with you before and after the ceremony. They can also watch the livestream of our ceremonies at a location on campus.

How can my guests who do not have tickets watch the ceremony?

Your graduation ceremony will be livestreamed online and screens will be available on campus. Locations for the livestreaming on campus will be confirmed in due course.

Can I request extra tickets on the day?

A limited number of tickets for each ceremony may become available on the day if people are unable to attend. These ‘returns’ will be available from our spare ticket desk and will be allocated on a first come, first served basis.

These additional tickets will be limited to a maximum of two tickets per graduand. Anyone requesting guest tickets will need to provide the graduand’s full name and student number.

Please note that guests of the graduand are advised to queue for these additional tickets themselves, so you are not delayed arriving at your ceremony.  

Do I have to pay for extra guest tickets?

No, we do not charge students for any guest tickets.

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