What happens at the Ceremony

The following will outline the procedures to be followed once you are inside the ceremony venue:

  • Opening times for the venues are listed at Arrival Times. Please note that once the ceremony begins the Hall doors will be closed and no further admittance will be allowed.

  • If possible, please leave your bags, cameras or other possessions with family members as you may not end up back in the same seat at the end of the ceremony.

  • When you enter the ceremony venue, please ensure that you have your ticket to hand as ushers will greet you to show you to your pre-assigned seat. Please make sure that you remain seated as this is the order in which you will be called to the stage (please note, seating is by award and alphabetical by surname and you may not be sat with your cohort).

  •  Your guests will not be seated with you.

  • If you have not already advised us that you do not wish to shake hands with the Chair of Ceremony or Dean please inform an usher before you take your seat.

  • Please ensure that all telephones have been turned off.

  • The ceremony will begin with a fifteen minute film presentation during which time members of staff will ensure that students are sitting in the correct seats.

  • The University will be taking images of the congregation at the start of the ceremony.  The image will be uploaded by the University on to a graduation tagging site which will be available via https://www.facebook.com/UoHalumni and users will be able to share the image online.  If you would prefer for your picture not to be included in the image you will be given the opportunity to move out of shot. 

  • At the conclusion of the photograph, you will be asked to stand as the academics process through the auditorium to the stage. When the academics have taken their seats, you should sit down. 

  • During the opening address, an usher will guide the first row of students from their seats to the stage.  During the ceremony the usher will return to the end of each row in order to indicate when it is that row's turn to move.  Please wait for the usher to appear before leaving your seat.

  • If you are being awarded a doctorate you will go first.  You will be escorted onto the stage by your supervisor and have your hood conferred upon you by the Chair of the Ceremony.  You will then leave the stage and return to your seat.

  • If you are receiving an undergraduate or postgraduate award you will stand at the edge of the stage until your name is called.  You will then cross the stage to shake hands with the Chair of the Ceremony and the Dean. This is the conferment of your award and no certificate will be presented.

  • On leaving the stage, you should follow the ushers' directions to your seat.  It is possible that you may not return to your original seat.

  • The conferment of awards is followed by the official speeches.

  • At the end of the ceremony, you will be asked to stand whilst the academics process from the stage to form the guard of honour, through which students will be directed row by row.

  • Once all graduates have left the ceremony venue your guests will be directed to join you.