Graduation Ceremonies

Graduation 2017 (photo credit James Linsell-Clark)
It is possible to bring up to two guests to a graduation ceremony in the Senate House. Please see below the list of dates when King’s will be presenting graduands in person and which degrees will be accepted at each ceremony. 

Congratulations on completing your degree requirements! Before the degree itself can be awarded, however, you need to go through the process of graduation. These pages will help explain that process; we have also compiled a list of frequently asked questions to help you. If you can’t find the answer to your query then please contact the Praelector’s Secretary, Barbara Tucker, on 01223 331236.

The College Praelector is Professor Nicholas Marston. He is responsible for presenting graduands at Congregations of the Regent House for the conferment of degrees; these ceremonies take place in the Senate House, and reach back many centuries. Graduands are presented individually by the Praelector to the Vice-Chancellor or his Deputy in the presence of the Proctors, who are the elected representatives of the Regent House. After the Vice-Chancellor has conferred your degree you will be presented with your degree certificate.

We very much hope that you will wish to take your degree in person. If that isn’t possible, you can proceed in absentia (in absence): your name will be included in the list of those graduating and your certificate sent on after the ceremony.  You should remember that you do not have your degree until it has been conferred upon you, in person or in absentia, at a Congregation of the Regent House.  If you require your degree certificate for employment or further education reasons then you may wish to consider graduating in absentia.

The University provides a detailed description of the ceremony. You can find the link to the relevant page in the links section at the foot of this page.


Eligibility to Graduate

In order to graduate, you must meet the eligibility criteria for the degree to which you wish to proceed. These may include residence requirements, examination results and approval from the Student Registry in the case of postgraduate qualifications. Full details of eligibility requirements for all degrees are listed in the University's Ordinances.

Please note that any student who expects to have outstanding debts at the point of graduation MUST meet with their tutor to discuss repayment before they are put forward to receive their degree. Failure to do so will result in the College being unable to put you forward for graduation.

Degree Congregations in 2022

You will need to be in College from 9am on the day for robing and rehearsal prior to the ceremony at 10am.  

Saturday 10 September

The application window is now closed.  

Saturday 22 October

Priority will be given to graduands who have completed their degree since March 2020 but have not had their degree conferred. Those who have already graduated in absentia are welcome to apply but should wait for confirmation after the closing date as there is a limit of 30 graduands that the College can present.  Up to two guests will be allowed in the Senate House and to lunch in College.  The application window is now closed.  

Saturday 26 November

The application to graduate in absentia only is now closed.  

Degree Congregations in 2023

Saturday 28 January

This date is still to be confirmed.  Open to any graduands. Maximum numbers will be confirmed nearer the time.  

Saturday 25 February

Open to any graduands. Maximum numbers will be confirmed nearer the time.

Saturday 25 March

Designated MA ceremony for those who matriculated in 2016. 

Friday 28 April or Saturday 29 April

Designated MA ceremony for those who matriculated in 2015 (t.b.c)   The University will confirm which day King's graduands will be presented.  This page will be updated when the date is confirmed.

Friday 19 May or Saturday 20 May

Details to be confirmed nearer the time.  The University will confirm which day King's graduands will be presented.  This page will be updated when the date is confirmed.

Wednesday 28 June

General Admission - current undergraduates only.

Friday 21 July

Details to be confirmed nearer the time.


General Admission 2017 - Entering the Senate House (photo credit James Linsell-Clark)

Undergraduates usually proceed to the B. A. degree, their first degree in most cases, as soon as they are qualified to do so. However, if a student is intending to be a candidate for the M. Eng, M. Math. or M. Sci. degree they must defer taking the B. A. until the end of their fourth year.

In the case of undergraduates, the majority will graduate at General Admission which is held at the end of June each year. This is our main undergraduate Congregation and only M. Eng, M. Math, M. Sci, B. A. and B. Th degrees are conferred on this occasion.

A ‘save the date’ email will be sent to all undergraduates in December with all details and the timetable for the two days of ceremony. The Praelector’s Secretary will send you an application form in March which will allow you to state your preferences.

General Admission

This is a two-day celebration for our undergraduates which takes place at the end of June. Full details, including a timetable, are sent out to all undergraduates well in advance of the occasion. In brief, the programme follows the same lines each year: there is a dress rehearsal during Tuesday lunchtime, followed by a group photograph. You and your family and friends are invited to attend Evensong that same afternoon. The graduation dinner is held in Hall and you may obtain tickets for yourself (free of charge) and up to a maximum of two guests (for whom there will be a charge).

The next day (Wednesday), after the option to attend breakfast in College, you meet your cohort to process through the College and on to the Senate House where the degree ceremony takes place. Each graduand may request up to two tickets for guests who wish to attend the ceremony. Afterwards the Provost and Fellows give a lunch party in College for you and up to two guests; there is no charge for this celebration of your undergraduate residence at King’s; once you leave the College later in the afternoon you become a Non-Resident Member (NRM) unless you are returning for further study.


MA Procession 2019 - Leaving King's - photo credit Martin Bond

Graduates, once they have received their letter of approval from the Board of Graduate Studies, can apply to graduate at any of the smaller Congregations held throughout the year. You cannot take your degree until you have received that formal approval, although you can ask to be provisionally added to a Congregation and withdrawn if your approval does not come though before the final deadline.

The University’s degree approval and conferment page can be accessed below.

Dress Code

Dress regulations for the ceremony are very strict and must be adhered to exactly; the overall effect must be formal and tidy. If you are inappropriately dressed, the Proctors may refuse to allow your degree to be conferred in person, thus leading to your exclusion from the Congregation. Whilst we will send you a detailed dress code nearer the time, along with details of where to hire your gown, you may wish to consult the University guidelines as well as their useful pictorial diagrams on how to wear your gown and which gown should be worn. There is no need to purchase a gown; we will supply the details of local hire shops nearer the time.

There are links for the University Academical Dress page and the Graduate Union's Gown Guide below.


If you are graduating in person then you will be required to attend a brief rehearsal prior to the ceremony. The Praelector will guide you through the intricacies of robing and the details of the ceremony. Full details will be sent to you prior to the ceremony. 

Praelector’s Luncheons

If you are receiving your degree in person, then the Praelector would be delighted if you would join him for lunch as guest of the College. You may bring up to two guests (for whom there will be a charge). Further details are available from the Praelector’s Secretary.

How to register for a Congregation

You apply by completing an application form (see link in FAQ section of this page) and emailing it to the Praelector’s Secretary. Please note the deadlines listed above. We cannot take applications after the closing date but we can withdraw your application in the case of your results not being received in time, or change your attendance to in absentia.

M.A. Graduation

Six years and one term after matriculating, a Bachelor of Arts is entitled to take his or her Master of Arts degree, either in person or in absence. The M. A. degree denotes a person's standing in the University, and gives admission to membership of the Senate; it does not depend upon further study, or residence, or payment of a fee.

From January 2023 those who matriculated in October 2016 will be eligible. The main M. A. Congregation is held in March; the Praelector’s Secretary will contact the newly eligible graduates during the preceding December, inviting them to submit their application - although there may be a delay in proceedings. Due to the pandemic, and the suspension of in-person congregations, we have not yet been able to invite back the 2022 cohort.  A separate date in 2023 will be arranged for the class of 2015 to take and celebrate their M.A. degree.

Any eligible graduate of King’s who has not yet received their M. A. may graduate in person or in absence at any of the smaller Congregations throughout the year.  Please contact the Praelector’s Secretary for further details.

Please read the FAQs below for more information about applying for graduation and what to expect on the day itself.
Return to the Graduate Study homepage where you can find more information about applying to King's and life at the College.
Find out more about the application process for graduate students, and about visiting King's before making your choice of College.
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