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University of Cambridge Graduation FAQ

Graduation FAQ

Graduation is an opportunity to celebrate your academic success with your guests in College.


The College has very limited guest accommodation available to graduands and their guests. Accommodation in College is very popular, booking in advance is highly recommended. Further details are available on request.

Alternatively, Conference Cambridge run the Cambridge Rooms service has details of rooms available in other Colleges on a Bed and Breakfast basis.

Guest dress code

The dress code for guests is expected to be formal/smart due to the nature of the ceremony.


College parking is not generally available, but we do our best to provide easy access for those with severely restricted mobility – though unfortunately even in these cases it is not possible to guarantee availability.

If parking is essential, please contact the Praelector’s Secretary who will try to assist.

There is a public multi-storey car park in Park Street. Further information on parking in the city can be obtained from the Cambridge City Council website. In general, those coming by car to attend graduations are best advised to use the Park and Ride sites and travel into the city by bus.


Every graduand has a photograph taken inside the Senate House while receiving their degree.

This is available to order on the day of the ceremony from the marquee in Senate House Yard and is administrated by Tempest Photography, which is also available to take photographs of graduands and their guests; if desired.

Guests are not permitted to take photographs in Senate House.

Futher information can be found on the University’s Senate House Photography webpage


The information below relates to the Congregations which are held throughout the year for candidates taking higher degrees (M.A., M.Phil., M.B.A., Ph.D etc) and those who are eligible, but unable, to attend General Admission in June.

If you are anticipating graduating with one of the following degrees (M.Eng., M.Math., M.Sci., Vet.M.B., B.A., B.Th.) at General Admission in late June, please see the General Admissions page.

Guest Information

Ceremony Tickets

Senate House tickets are not sent out in advance. Tickets will be available for collection on the day of the ceremony from the main Porters' Lodge in College.

Each graduand is allocated a maximum of three tickets for the Senate House, apart from M.A. graduands who are allocated a maximum of two tickets each. This number includes babies and children.

Each guest must have a ticket or they will not be admitted to the Senate House.

Babies and children are required to have their own ticket, although the University does not recommend bringing very young children to the Senate House.

It is occasionally possible for the College to re-allocate any ‘spare’ tickets but this cannot be guaranteed and can only be confirmed by the Praelectors Secretary one week before the ceremony itself. Please do not offer any 'spare' tickets to others.

Please do not request extra tickets until the week of the actual ceremony the College does not operate a waiting list system for extra ticket requests. If there are any 'spare' tickets they will be issued on a first-come, first-served basis based on requests received the week of the ceremony.

Lunch Arrangements

On congregation dates where Magdalene candidates are presented in person (other than MA Day) the College offers drinks and a two-course lunch either before or after the ceremony, depending on the schedule for the day. The lunch is not compulsory but some graduands like to use this as an opportunity to show friends/family their College.

Lunch usually takes place in Hall or the Large Combination Room, according to numbers attending. Lunch for the July congregation is usually held in Ramsay Hall.

Space is limited and bookings for lunches at this and the other congregations are taken on a first-come first-served basis, up to the maximum capacity of the venue.

The cost for guest lunches is £15.00 per person. There is no charge made for graduands' lunches.

Please let us know if you or your guests require a vegetarian or vegan meal, or have any other dietary requirements.

No refund will be issued for meals cancelled with less than 72 hours notice.

Some areas of the College are not easy to access for graduands or guests with restricted mobility and therefore venues may need to be altered in order to accommodate special requirements.

Any special dietary or access requirements should be notified to the Praelectors Secretary when your application form is submitted and no later than three business days (72 hours) before the date of the ceremony. Please contact the Praelector’s Secretary if you have any concerns.


The College requires advance notification of the age of any guest under the age of 14 years, together with any special requirements.

The College’s buildings and grounds were not designed with children in mind and so there are areas in which special caution should be taken, notably by the river (River Court, the Fellows’ Garden, Scholars’ Garden) and on Magdalene Street which carries a great variety of fast-moving traffic.