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Collection: doctoral graduation gowns - faculty doctorate & phd gowns, deluxe doctoral graduation gown - academic regalia, classic doctoral graduation gown - academic regalia, custom doctoral graduation gown - doctorate regalia, custom classic doctoral gown package, doctor of theology doctoral gown - academic regalia, doctor of education doctoral gown - academic regalia, doctor of law doctoral gown - academic regalia, doctor of dentistry doctoral gown - academic regalia, doctor of medicine doctoral gown - academic regalia, doctor of nursing doctoral gown - academic regalia, doctor of economics doctoral gown - academic regalia, doctor of library science doctoral gown - academic regalia, doctor of accounting business doctoral gown - academic regalia, doctor of dramatic arts & fine arts doctoral gown - academic regalia, doctor of communication & journalism doctoral gown - academic regalia, phd blue doctoral gown - academic regalia, doctor of music doctoral gown - academic regalia, doctor of engineering doctoral gown - academic regalia, doctor of agriculture doctoral gown - academic regalia, doctor of veterinary science doctoral gown - academic regalia, doctoral gowns to help you graduate with panache.

A PhD doctorate degree, faculty gown or doctoral graduation robe is not easy to attain, but it also comes with the most elaborate graduation gown. Choose an array different doctorate gowns from GraduationCapandGown.com and trust us to do the rest. No stress and hassle, just a memorable graduation day for you!

  • Many different discipline-based doctorate gowns to choose from.
  • Deluxe, detailed fluting along the shoulders and yoke.
  • Lowest price, guaranteed!

Looking your best on your doctorate graduation day doesn’t need to be a hassle. Ordering from GraduationCapandGown.com is fast and easy, just choose an item, customize it and proceed with the purchase. The best thing is, items are delivered straight to your door. Place your Doctoral Gown order today!

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Graduation Attire

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Collection: phd & doctorate graduation regalia, choose a category, custom doctoral graduation gowns - faculty doctorate & phd gowns.

Doctoral Gowns to help you graduate with panache Marvel at the exquisite...  

Doctoral Tams - 4, 6, 8 Sided Graduation Tams

What are Doctoral Tams / Graduation TamsWhat is a doctoral tam? When...  

PhD & Doctoral Graduation Hoods

Elaborate Doctorate Academic Hoods for prestige and authority Designed to convey an...  

Affordable Doctoral Gown, Hood & Tam Packages

Doctorate Gown, Tam & Hood graduation packages made for distinction Only those...  

Doctoral Academic Beefeaters

Affordable Doctoral Academic Beefeaters in just a click As a person from...  

4 Sided Doctoral Tam - Graduation Faculty Regalia

6 sided doctoral tam - graduation faculty regalia, 8 sided doctoral tam -graduation faculty regalia, doctoral academic beefeater, deluxe doctoral graduation hood - academic regalia, custom doctoral graduation tam, gown and hood package - doctorate regalia, custom doctoral graduation gown and hood package - doctorate regalia, custom doctoral graduation gown and tam package - doctorate regalia, custom doctoral graduation gown - doctorate regalia, deluxe phd doctoral graduation tam, gown & hood package - phd blue, deluxe doctoral graduation tam, gown & hood package, deluxe doctoral graduation gown & hood package, deluxe doctoral graduation tam & gown package, deluxe doctoral graduation gown - academic regalia, doctor of theology doctoral gown - academic regalia, doctor of education doctoral gown - academic regalia, phd blue doctoral gown - academic regalia, doctor of dentistry doctoral gown - academic regalia, doctor of medicine doctoral gown - academic regalia, doctor of law doctoral gown - academic regalia, graduate with authority and dignity with our doctoral regalia.

Only those who have dedicated years to their education can wear the Doctoral graduation regalia. Congratulations to you on this amazing accomplishment. Wear your doctoral robe proudly knowing that it is made with high-quality materials and crafted by the best in the business. GraduationAttire offers gowns and hoods for formal college ceremonies. Our professional looking matte fabric gowns look fantastic and will stay looking fresh and new for years to come.

When the faculty wears their graduation attire, the graduation ceremony maintains an air of dignity and pomp. Only those who hold a doctorate are entitled to wear the fine gowns with the notable velvet trim. GraduationAttire’s Deluxe Doctoral gowns come in sizes to fit those from 4’6” to 6’11” in regular and plus sizes, are comfortable to wear, and are durable for many years to come.

Hoods are an indicator of the highest degree earned by the wearer by their color and length. We can help you determine the proper colors for the velvet and chevrons on the hood. With a full compliment of colors to choose from, each discipline is available to ensure the highest quality academic hoods.

No ensemble is complete without a cap and tassel. Tams are often chosen for their headgear due to the comfort and look. We offer a handsome velvet tam as an option. At GraduationAttire, our prices make the purchase of an entire doctoral regalia affordable for even the newest doctoral candidate.  

Order your doctoral package today and be ready for your graduation ceremony. We are ready to help you with the experience and professionalism of our customer service staff. They can ensure that you order the correct colors for your gown, hood, and tam.

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  • Doctoral Gown

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Adding Presidential Bars to a doctoral gown is an extra $25.00 per set. If ordering online, order a professional doctoral gown (President's bars are not offered with our Verona line) and order the set of bars separately. Mention in the comments section of your order that you are having the extra bars added to the doctoral robe.

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Doctoral graduation gown.

Your PhD graduation ceremony will be a proud and prestigious occasion, and a quality Doctorate graduation cap and gown will ensure you look the part for the big event. We understand how significant your Doctorate graduation is, even if you’re celebrating at home , so we overlook no detail.

Ordering Your Doctorate Graduation Cap and Gown

When it comes to PhD regalia, there is a range of different gowns and accessories to choose from.

At Marston Robing, we offer Doctoral gowns, hoods and bonnets in three styles – PhD, QMUL, and London PhD. Our gown sizes are designed to fit individuals from 5’0 to 7’0 ft tall. To find your doctoral graduation gown size please take a look at our gown size chart .

You can also order a Tudor Bonnet from us, a traditional Doctoral graduation hat. The Tudor Bonnet is soft, comfortable and features an adjustable inner headband. You can choose from a velvet or cloth fabric in black, red or royal blue.

If you are ordering a Doctoral hat, we recommend looking over our graduation hat guide before purchase.

As with all of our graduation gowns , customisation is an option. If you can’t find a Doctorate graduation cap or gown in a colour you’d like, please get in touch with our team and we can discuss your options.

Bespoke Orders: For bespoke orders, please get in touch or give us a call on 01264 339706 . Our team are more than happy to discuss your requirements with you and help you to complete your order.  

If you have any more queries, please head to our FAQ page or get in touch with our team. 

QMUL Gown, Hood and Bonnet with Cord for Doctorate/PhD Level

QMUL Gown, Hood and Bonnet with Cord for Doctorate/PhD Level

To enable graduates to celebrate at home due to the current situation, we are offering the sale of o..

£660.00 Ex VAT: £550.00

Adjustable Tudor Bonnet

Adjustable Tudor Bonnet

A Tudor bonnet is a traditional soft round cap, with a tassel hanging from a cord encircling the hat..

£85.00 Ex VAT: £70.83

Adjustable Tudor Bonnet - Ceremony Stock

Adjustable Tudor Bonnet - Ceremony Stock

This item is from our ceremony stock and has been worn once but is in excellent condition.It is adju..

£35.00 Ex VAT: £29.17

Honour Cord with Tassels

Honour Cord with Tassels

Honour cords are traditionally provided to individuals graduating with honours and are worn around t..

£8.50 Ex VAT: £7.08

London PhD Style Gown, Hood and Bonnet-Ex Hire Stock

London PhD Style Gown, Hood and Bonnet-Ex Hire Stock

This is the London PhD style gown and matching hood with tudor bonnet. Gown - burgundy with bur..

£250.00 Ex VAT: £208.33

PhD Style Gown, Hood and Bonnet--Ex Hire Stock

PhD Style Gown, Hood and Bonnet--Ex Hire Stock

This PhD style gown comes with matching hood and a black tudor bonnet. Gown - re..

£195.00 Ex VAT: £162.50

Frequently Asked Questions

  • Can my order be sent to a different delivery address?  Yes, when ordering you will have the opportunity to select a different delivery address.
  • What do I do if I want a colour that is not listed?  Please contact us to discuss your requirements, we will help to the best of our ability, but please allow 4-6 weeks for customised orders.
  • I would like customised stoles, how do I order?  Please contact us to discuss your requirements.
  • Orders received before 2pm are usually dispatched that working day, or if later, then within 1 working day, and should be received in line with our shipping times.

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Collection: doctoral graduation gowns - collegiate regalia, custom doctoral graduation gown - doctorate regalia, deluxe doctoral graduation gown - academic regalia, classic doctoral graduation gown - academic regalia, custom classic doctoral gown package, custom doctoral graduation gown and tam package - doctorate regalia, custom doctoral graduation tam, gown and hood package - doctorate regalia, custom doctoral graduation gown and hood package - doctorate regalia, custom classic doctoral gown and hood package, custom classic doctoral gown and tam package, custom classic doctoral gown, tam and hood package, doctor of theology doctoral gown - academic regalia, doctor of dentistry doctoral gown - academic regalia, doctor of medicine doctoral gown - academic regalia, doctor of education doctoral gown - academic regalia, doctor of law doctoral gown - academic regalia, deluxe royal blue doctoral gown, deluxe red doctoral gown, deluxe purple doctoral gown, deluxe navy blue doctoral gown, deluxe maroon doctoral gown, deluxe hunter doctoral gown, deluxe gold doctoral gown, deluxe emerald doctoral gown, doctor of accounting business doctoral gown - academic regalia, doctoral degree gowns.

Explore the Symbolism and Prestige of Doctoral Degree Gowns

Doctoral degree gowns hold a rich tradition and symbolism, representing the pinnacle of academic achievement. These gowns, often referred to as doctoral robes or regalia, serve as a visual representation of the wearer's scholarly accomplishments and the institution they represent.

Significance of All-Black Gowns with Black Velvet

The classic image of a doctoral robe often features an all-black gown with intricate black velvet accents, particularly on the front panels and sleeve cuffs. The choice of black symbolizes the seriousness, solemnity, and dignity of academia. The luxurious black velvet signifies the discipline and rigor that define the journey toward earning a doctoral degree.

Wearing Gowns with Colors

While the traditional all-black gown is deeply symbolic, some institutions incorporate specific colors or elements into doctoral regalia. These colors often denote fields of study, academic disciplines, or the university's colors. For instance, a splash of a distinctive hue on the velvet trim, hood, or sleeves might represent a specific academic department or discipline. This customization adds a personal touch to the regalia while honoring the diverse fields of study pursued by doctoral scholars.

The Impact of Academic Prestige

Wearing doctoral gowns holds a special significance during commencement ceremonies, academic convocations, and other scholarly events. The attire not only reflects the individual's scholarly achievements but also contributes to the overall atmosphere of achievement, tradition, and scholarly excellence. It signifies the dedication, hard work, and expertise that culminate in earning a doctoral degree. Here's a comprehensive color chart outlining the meanings associated with different colors for doctoral graduation robes:

  • Represents solemnity, formality, and the traditional color of doctoral regalia.
  • Symbolizes the discipline, dignity, and seriousness of academic achievement.
  • Signifies philosophy, a broad field encompassing wisdom, intellect, and scholarship.
  • Represents the study of liberal arts, including literature, history, and the humanities.

Gold/Yellow:

  • Symbolizes excellence, achievement, and the highest level of academic accomplishment.
  • Represents the fields of science, mathematics, and social sciences.
  • Represents growth, fertility, and the natural world.
  • Signifies the study of medicine, pharmacy, and related health sciences.
  • Symbolizes royalty, power, and ambition.
  • Represents the study of law, jurisprudence, and political science.
  • Signifies passion, energy, and determination.
  • Represents the study of arts, including music, fine arts, and performing arts.

Light Blue/Cyan:

  • Symbolizes tranquility, creativity, and innovation.
  • Represents the study of education, pedagogy, and instructional design.
  • Signifies stability, reliability, and practicality.
  • Represents the study of business, management, and related disciplines.
  • Symbolizes compassion, nurturing, and understanding.
  • Represents the study of social work, counseling, and psychology.

Silver/Gray:

  • Signifies neutrality, balance, and practicality.
  • Represents interdisciplinary studies or a combination of various fields.
  • Symbolizes purity, innocence, and spirituality.
  • Represents the study of theology, divinity, and religious studies.
  • Signifies enthusiasm, creativity, and determination.
  • Represents the study of communication, journalism, and media studies.

Doctoral degree gowns, whether in traditional all-black with black velvet or adorned with specific colors, stand as a symbol of academic accomplishment, knowledge, and dedication. They embody the rich heritage of academia and serve as a testament to the wearer's commitment to advancing knowledge in their field. Whether steeped in tradition or personalized with vibrant hues, these gowns showcase the culmination of years of scholarly pursuit and excellence.

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Deluxe doctoral academic hood - custom your own, 6 sided tam, 8 sided tam, 4 sided tam, academic bullion tassel, doctoral academic beefeater, deluxe doctoral graduation tam, gown & hood package, classic doctoral tam, gown & hood package, custom doctoral graduation tam, gown & hood package doctorate regalia, deluxe doctoral academic gown, deluxe doctorate tam & gown package, classic doctoral academic gown, custom doctoral gown, classic doctoral tam & gown package, custom doctoral graduation gown and tam package doctorate regalia, classic doctoral gown & hood package, classic doctoral gown, deluxe doctoral academic gown & hood package, classic doctoral cap & gown - academic regalia, classic doctoral tam & gown - academic regalia, academic doctoral degree regalia.

Gradshop offers full exclusive selection of Doctoral degree regalia at affordable prices and great delivery options. We know the academic dress code is an important component celebrating your graduation ceremony  and we qualify in bringing you the perfect high quality  academic regalia you deserve.  You can buy the products individually or in two selected packes the  gown and hood packs , and the  tam and gown packages . The  Doctoral gown  come with the distinctive velvet trim earned by the doctorate degree accomplishment and made stylishly to fit comfortably. The  doctoral hoods  are fully customized to meet your requirements and complete your dress code with your  doctorate beefeater . High quality merchandise is enhanced by our outstanding customer service and delivery options.

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Gowns

The Magnificent Deluxe Custom Doctoral Gown

At GraduationMall, you will find the most resplendent stock deluxe Doctoral gowns and custom Doctoral gown available. Whether you are looking for the deluxe PhD gowns with black velvet trim and gold piping or customized PhD academic regalia in your university’s colors, our doctorate academic regalia along with the academic hoods guarantee the degree candidate an impressive look on commencement day. The deluxe custom doctoral graduation gown in black trim with gold is made with 100% polyester and gabardine featuring a velvet front panel with three matching bars on each sleeve. As with all of our academic apparel and graduation hoods, the PhD graduation gown can be customized in a variety of colors; depending on the scholastic field of study. While black is customary for the Doctoral degree, many institutions allow the option of embellishing the velvet bars for special scholastic achievements.

Similar to our academic costumes such as caps and gowns which are made of light-weight, crease-resistant material, our deluxe PhD gowns, doctoral tams, and deluxe hoods offer expert craftsmanship and handmade top-drawer quality. Not only are all of our graduation robes   free-flowing and comfortable to wear, but they also offer highly decorative features that set the wearers apart from the others. Our perfect Doctoral regalia offers a darted, reinforced shoulder yoke with handcrafted fluting across the shoulder and back. Each detail of the academic dress has been thoughtfully planned out to bring our customers the highest quality available on the market.

We endeavor to keep up with the latest trends and styles, ensuring that all of our academic apparel is on the cutting edge of fashion. While we pride ourselves in fashion-forward scholastic garments, we also offer a complete line of more faculty regalia purchase selections for those who prefer to follow a more traditional approach on commencement day. Of course, it is our highly competitive pricing that gives us the leading edge among the competition. This is what our customers have come to expect from GraduationMall. 

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Academic regalia, also known as the “cap and gown,” varies according to the degree conferred and the level of scholarship attained. The bachelor’s gown is a simple robe that covers the entire body. The master’s gown has longer, closed sleeves. The doctoral robe usually is the most elaborate; it is made of velvet, has three stripes on the arms, and includes a hood.

For faculty and doctoral robes, the robe itself is usually specific to the university, while the hood trim indicates the academic discipline. In addition, the faculty member wears the robe indicative of his or her highest degree. If the highest degree is an honorary degree, the faculty member has a choice of wearing the robe of the school that conferred the honorary degree, or the one that conferred the highest earned degree. Bachelor’s and master’s candidates wear a square mortarboard. Doctoral students and faculty usually wear a tam.

In this feature we look at the details of faculty regalia — explaining why they wear what they wear.

Let’s commence!

Georgia Tech Faculty Regalia

Ángel Cabrera

Ph.D., Cognitive Psychology • Georgia Institute of Technology • School Colors: White and gold

Cabrera

Details: 1) The president wears the Institute Medallion, which bears Georgia Tech’s “Progress and Service” motto. The medallion’s chain has the initials of each of Tech’s 12 presidents. 2) The president’s traditional tam is finished off with a gold tassel. 3) Four velvet stripes adorn the sleeves of the president’s gown.

Cabrera

The president also has traditional Spanish regalia from his other alma mater, Universidad Politécnica de Madrid, where he received an honorary doctorate in 2018. The regalia has lace-covered sleeves and is worn with white gloves and a white bowtie.

Steven W. McLaughlin

Provost and Executive Vice President for Academic Affairs

Ph.D., Electrical Engineering • University of Michigan • School Colors: Blue and maize

mclaughlin

Details: 1) He wears a six-sided tam with tassel. 2) His hood is blue and maize.  

Kaye Husbands Fealing

Dean and Ivan Allen Chair, Ivan Allen College of Liberal Arts

Ph.D., Economics • Harvard University • School Colors: Crimson

kaye husbands fealing in regalia

Details: 1) The crimson gown has black velvet lapels and arm bands. 2) The color of the crow’s-foot lapel emblem represents the school granting the degree.

Ellen Bassett

Dean and John Portman Chair, College of Design

Ph.D., Urban and Regional Planning • University of Wisconsin-Madison • School Colors: Cardinal and white

dean bassett

Details: 1) She wears a traditional gown with a tam. 2) Her hood is cardinal and white for Wisconsin, and the sparkly shoes are white and gold for Georgia Tech. 3) She wears a Wisconsin pin and vintage Yellow Jacket earrings.

Maryam Alavi

Elizabeth D. and Thomas M. Holder Chair and Professor, Scheller College of Business

Ph.D., Information Systems • The Ohio State University • School colors: Scarlet and gray

alavi

Details: 1) Her hood is scarlet and gray. 2) She wears a six-sided tam with a gold tassel.

Susan Lozier

Dean and Betsy Middleton and John Clark Sutherland Chair, College of Sciences

Ph.D., Ocean Sciences • University of Washington • School Colors: Purple and gold

lozier

Details: 1) Her tam is purple velvet with a gold tassel, and her robe is purple with gold accents. 2) Dean Lozier’s initials are stitched inside her gown.

Raheem Beyah

Dean and Southern Company Chair, College of Engineering

Ph.D., Electrical and Computer Engineering • Georgia Institute of Technology • School Colors: White and gold

raheem beyah in regalia

Details: 1) The lapels, sleeve bars, and part of the hood are navy velvet. (2) He wears a navy velvet tam with a gold tassel. 

Leslie Sharp

Dean of Libraries

Ph.D., History and Sociology of Technology and Science • Georgia Institute of Technology • School Colors: White and gold

leslie sharp in regalia

Details: 1) She wears a six-sided tam, which is navy velvet with a gold tassel. 2) The lapels, which bear the Institute’s seal, are velvet, as are the sleeve bars.

Nelson Baker

Dean, Professional Education

Ph.D., Civil Engineering • Carnegie Mellon University • School Colors: Carnegie red, black, steel gray, and iron gray

nelson baker in regalia

Details:  1) He wears a black gown with a traditional mortar board. 2) The Carnegie Mellon University Tartan, first commissioned in 1967 for academic hoods, also serves as an official “color” for the university.

Georgia Tech Student Regalia

Details: 1) Undergraduates wear black mortarboards with white and gold tassels, and 2) black robes that bear the Georgia Tech seal on the lapels. Master’s graduates wear the same mortarboards and a similar robe to that of undergraduates, but the sleeves have an extension at the back of the wrist opening, as is customary for master’s gowns. (Below) Master’s hood colors correspond to the academic degree programs. Learn more about hood colors at Georgia Tech .

master's hood colors

Details: Ph.D. graduate robes are Georgia Tech gold with navy blue accents. 1 and 2) The sleeve bars and lapels, which also bear the Institute’s seal, are velvet, as is the navy part of the hood. The hood is gold, navy, and white. 3) Ph.D. graduates wear a six-sided tam, which is navy velvet with a gold tassel.

Writer: Victor Rogers Photographers: Allison Carter, Rob Felt, Christopher Moore Design: Kristen Bailey, Mark Ziemer

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Information on ordering regalia for Commencement events.

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All graduating students participating in the University-wide Commencement and the Harvard Griffin GSAS Diploma Awarding Ceremony are required to wear the official Harvard rental regalia, as approved by the Harvard University Commencement Office and distributed by the Harvard Coop.

Purchasing Regalia

To purchase a custom robe or full academic regalia, please visit the Harvard Coop's custom purchase ordering portal . The deadline to purchase a custom gown for Commencement is March 8, 2024. The custom orders processing time is currently eight weeks, plus transit time within the US. For international deliveries, add two weeks.

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Master's degree candidates.

Students receiving an AM or SM degree who plan to participate in Commencement activities can now order rental regalia via the Harvard COOP . The deadline for rental orders is April 7, 2024. This is a hard deadline, necessary to manage production, processing, and shipping timelines.

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PhD Candidates

Students receiving a PhD degree who plan to participate in Commencement activities and rent their regalia do not need to pre-order or reserve a gown. You can pick up your rental gown at the Harvard Coop (Harvard Square location) between May 14 and May 23 . Your rental size is guaranteed in stock. If you have unique or specific sizing requirements, please contact the Harvard COOP by April 7, 2024 so they can accommodate you. Review this PDF for further details.

If you have any questions regarding the correct regalia to order, please contact [email protected]

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Academic Regalia at Graduation, Explained

University commencements are exciting celebrations of student achievement, and they also provide faculty, students, and their families a visible connection to the birth of the modern university way back in the 12th century.

The black robes worn by graduating students and their faculty are known as academic “regalia” – and there’s a difference between a master’s degree gown vs bachelor’s.

While undergraduate graduation robes may all seem the same, at the graduate level regalia tell a rich story of the graduate’s academic journey. That is, they do if you know what to look for!

At the Masters level, regalia consists of a simple black gown.  What distinguishes a Masters level gown from a Baccalaureate gown is the sleeves.  Masters level gowns usually have long, extended sleeves.  Historically, those sleeves could have been used as pockets.

Master’s regalia meaning

What do masters graduates wear? At the master’s level, regalia consists of a simple black gown. What distinguishes a master’s level gown from a baccalaureate gown are the sleeves. Master’s level gowns usually have long, extended sleeves. Historically, those sleeves could have been used as pockets.

The headgear for the master’s regalia is traditionally the square mortarboard cap. (Graduates wear the mortarboard only at the full University commencement, as they get in the way of the College hooding ceremony.) At University commencement, wear the mortarboard tassel on the right. After your degree is conferred, move the tassel to the left.

The master’s hood is a modern interpretation of the hooded robes worn by medieval monks who taught in the early universities. The monks would use their hoods to keep warm in the winters and also to collect alms. The master’s hood is 3.5 feet long and features a three-inch velvet trim that indicates the graduate’s academic discipline. The inside of the hood, displayed on the graduate’s back, shows the colors of the school from which the student graduated.

Master’s hood colors

Master’s students at the College of Graduate and Professional Studies receive hoods with UNE blue and silver on the inside, and the following colors on the outside:

  • Master of Science in Applied Nutrition : Science Gold
  • Master of Science in Education : Light Blue
  • Master of Science in Health Informatics : Science Gold
  • Master of Public Health : Salmon
  • Master of Social Work : Citron
  • Master of Healthcare Administration : Drab (light brown)

Certificates of Advanced Graduate Study (CAGS) regalia

Students graduating from the post-master’s Certificate of Advanced Graduate Study program wear the light blue hood of Education with a light blue cord indicating their advanced study.

Doctoral regalia meaning

At the doctoral level, regalia consists of a more elaborate gown with a five-inch velvet panel down the front and three velvet bars on each sleeve. The velvet trim on a doctoral gown indicates the degree and academic discipline of the graduate. Some schools choose a color other than black for their doctoral regalia. Harvard University’s doctoral robes, for instance, are the school’s trademark crimson color.

Doctoral regalia colors

Graduates of UNE’s Doctor of Education (Ed.D.) program wear black gowns with light blue velvet, showing their connection to the field of education.

Doctoral regalia with navy blue or black velvet trim indicates that the wearer has earned a Doctorate of Philosophy (Ph.D.) degree. Other colors of trim indicate other academic disciplines. At University commencement, you may see regalia with lilac trim (Doctorate of Dental Medicine), Olive Green (Pharmacy Doctorate), or Kelly Green (Medical or Osteopathic Doctorate).

The doctoral hood, like the master’s hood, features the colors of the graduate’s university on the inside and the color of the academic discipline on the outside.

Doctoral tam

The doctoral headgear is traditionally the soft tam. Some tams have four corners and look like floppy mortarboards. Others have six corners. The style of tam is determined by the school from which one graduates.

Fun fact: most doctoral tams have the tassel sewn to the fabric of the hat. Instead of moving the tassel from right to left, you turn the entire tam so that the tassel “moves” to the left side!

Cords and stoles for graduation regalia

You may also see graduates at commencement wearing stoles or cords. These indicate that the wearer is a member of an honor society, or has earned honors in other ways. Veterans or active duty students in the US military, for instance, have their service recognized with a red, white, and blue cord.

In the same way that the regalia robes and hoods are historical descendants of the clothing of medieval monks, cords were used in the Catholic and Anglican churches to distinguish between the varying ranks of the clergy.

In 2019, CGPS introduced the silver service cord for Public Health graduates. These students have e arned honors by engaging in service activities . If you see a graduate with a silver service cord, ask them about their service experiences. They’ve done some amazing things!

Determining the meanings of different pieces of academic regalia

Commencement may look like a sea of more-or-less uniform black gowns, but with a sharp eye, you can tell where the graduate earned their degree, what degree they earned, what honors they earned during their degree, and in what field they earned their degree.

That’s not bad for an outfit that’s more than 900 years old!

Click here for more commencement details! 

Have additional questions? Reach out! Specialized Enrollment Counselors are available Monday – Friday, 8 am – 5 pm EST via email at [email protected] or by calling (855) 325-0896.

If you dream about walking across the stage yourself someday, download our guide to find out which online program is right for you:

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What are the different types of regalia for graduation and what do they mean?

By Michael Feder

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At a glance

  • Academic regalia refers to the cap and gown students wear at their graduation.
  • Academic regalia is a ceremonial tradition at commencements. The term dates back to the 16th century, but the practice of incorporating academic dress started even earlier.
  • Different colors and adornments reflect various academic achievements, disciplines and honors as well as which academic level a graduate has completed. 
  • University of Phoenix commencement ceremonies honor the past while recognizing the achievements of our students by approaching regalia in a way that is uniquely UOPX.  

Why do college graduates wear caps and gowns during graduation anyway?

The term regalia originated in the 1530s. It means, “Rights and powers of a king, royal privilege,” and it stems from the Latin regalia meaning “royal things.” The proto-Indo-European root “reg-” means to “move in a straight line” and “to lead, rule” in certain contexts.

In the 1670s, regalia was first used to refer to “decorations or insignia of an order,” and this definition is the closest to how the term is used today. Emblems or insignia are used during formal occasions to denote status, something that also applies to the attire and adornments worn during academic commencement ceremonies. 

Over time, traditions evolve, and graduation ceremonies are no exception. Some educational institutions change their ceremonies to fit their own need; nevertheless, such ceremonies are typically still rooted in tradition.

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Types of regalia 

Academic regalia is often referred to as the “ cap and gown ” but involves several distinct components. Required attire for commencement depends on the type of degree you have earned. 

The gowns worn for traditional graduation ceremonies originated in the 12th century with medieval scholars’ garments. It’s speculated that these long gowns were donned to keep scholars warm in drafty buildings and symbolized their status at the same time.

In 1895, the Intercollegiate Registry of Academic Costume introduced the Intercollegiate Code of Academic Costume , detailing black gowns with:

  • Pointed sleeves for bachelor’s degrees
  • Long, closed sleeves for master’s degrees
  • Round, open sleeves for doctoral degrees

It also adds velvet stripes in front and on the sleeves of doctoral gowns, matching in color to the graduate’s respective degree department.

Today, the types and colors of graduation gowns may vary depending on university policy. Most traditions are upheld, however, with long gowns that cover the entire body and velvet stripes on the sleeves signifying doctoral or faculty status. At times, the gown is made of velvet material. 

While the hood used to be a fixture of all gowns and robes as a means to keep warm, today they are usually present on robes for master’s and doctoral candidates only.

The hood has areas for specific colors. The hood trim color, for example, can indicate academic discipline affiliation . The chevrons (or stripes) might represent school colors. If there is a hood, it may be worn draped across the back of the robe with a cap in its place.

The flat caps that are now synonymous with commencement evolved from the long hoods of the Middle Ages to skullcaps in the 1700s. The 1895 code standardized skullcaps with mortarboards, the flat, square boards you see today on top of the skullcap. The code also mentioned the requirement that tassels be attached to the middle of the mortarboard, much like you see today. 

These flat graduation caps with long tassels typically incorporate a university’s chosen colors and often include some embellishments, such as a school’s insignia as a metal charm on the tassel. Students may also decorate their caps to stick out in a sea of identical caps.

Students earning bachelor’s and master’s degrees wear the typical mortarboard and tassel. Those earning doctoral degrees replace the flat cap with a tam . A tam is typically made of black velvet and has a soft top rather than a rigid board. They can have four, six or eight sides and typically have a similar tassel.

Often a brilliant gold color, the tassel is used in a ceremonial gesture when students are officially declared graduates. For bachelor’s graduates, the tassel is worn on the right until their degree is conferred. Then, they move the tassel to the left. Master’s and doctoral graduates typically keep the tassel on the right to signify achievement. 

Once a ceremony comes to a close, graduates often throw their caps in the air to celebrate. This practice may vary depending on school policy. 

At some universities, cords are draped across graduates’ shoulders to signify affiliation with certain organizations, such as membership in an honor society. These cords might adopt the school’s colors. Some universities adopt cords to signify academic distinctions or affiliations with honor societies. There is no national standard for these distinctions, but universities award them according to GPA.

Similar to cords, stoles are draped around the shoulders of the gown. They are also sometimes referred to as graduation sashes and are made of a silky material. They signify affiliation with extracurricular clubs, Greek life, military service, professional organizations and more. Stole colors vary but are designed to align with their affiliation and contrast with the main color of the gown.

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Regalia traditions by academic level.

The traditional regalia of caps, gowns, stoles and mortarboards is found across all academic levels, but there are differences based on the level of academic achievement. Let’s take a look at the different regalia at the bachelor’s, master’s and doctoral degree levels.

Bachelor’s degree regalia

When earning a bachelor’s degree, the graduate is typically required to wear: 

  • Floor-length gown
  • Skullcap and mortarboard
  • Affiliation cords and stoles 

Students often personalize their mortarboards. These decorations can include elements from their cultural background, visuals related to their profession, personal messages or artistic expression. 

Master’s degree regalia 

Master’s degree candidates differentiate their attire from that of bachelor’s degree candidates by wearing a gown adorned with a hood.

Traditionally, hood colors for master’s graduates often correspond with different academic disciplines within the master’s program. Regalia hood colors might stick to traditional colors, but some schools use their own brand colors.

Doctoral degree regalia

As the highest graduate achievement, a doctoral degree is differentiated from the others in several ways. As mentioned, doctoral candidates typically wear tams in lieu of caps. They also wear velvet robes with hoods, and their robes have velvet stripes on the front and sleeves, according to academic discipline.

Doctoral degree colors

Hood and stripe colors for doctoral candidates denote different disciplines. These are typically the same as other color designations for departments and include but are not limited to:

  • Doctor of Nursing : Apricot
  • Doctor of Health Administration : Sage green
  • Doctor of Business Administration : Drab
  • Doctor of Education : Light blue 

Commencement ceremonies at University of Phoenix

University of Phoenix commencement ceremonies honor the past while recognizing what makes us distinctly unique. UOPX graduates aren’t the typical 18-to-20-year-old. They’re working adults who desire to learn more and expand their skill set but require a flexible schedule. Being able to take courses and then graduate amid everything else they are juggling is typically a significant event.

At University of Phoenix, commencement ceremonies celebrate individual student accomplishments and recognize faculty who guided students on their educational journeys. They also offer an opportunity for friends and family to share in the achievement of graduates (especially those who supported the graduates throughout their academic journeys). 

To accommodate students who live all over the country and often balance multiple professional and personal commitments while going to school, UOPX offers an annual commencement ceremony in Phoenix as well as other ceremonies in selected locations throughout the year.

Eligible students and graduates can attend one of these ceremonies. They may also choose to attend a virtual commencement , either instead of an in-person commencement or in addition to it. Additional commencement details can be found online at phoenix.edu/commencement .   

University of Phoenix regalia standards

If you’re planning to graduate soon or wanting to picture yourself as a UOPX alum, we’ll provide a glimpse into what you will look like walking across the stage at graduation. 

You will find that like many other commencement ceremonies, students don a graduation cap and gown but other details may vary.

University of Phoenix graduates must wear the appropriate regalia to in-person commencement ceremonies. (Regalia isn’t required for virtual ceremonies.)

The University’s official school colors are UOPX Red and UOPX Platinum. These are custom colors and proprietary to the University. Graduates will see these colors prominently displayed at commencement, as they observe the following parameters:

*It’s important to note that some of the degrees listed below are no longer offered at University of Phoenix.

Associate degree regalia

  • Black gown, worn closed, with pointed sleeves
  • Black mortarboard cap
  • Tassel in UOPX Red and UOPX Platinum with a drop-down medallion on the tassel that features the official UOPX seal
  • No stole or hood should be worn

associate degree black gown and cap

Bachelor’s regalia 

  • Black mortarboard cap 
  • Tassel in UOPX Red and UOPX Platinum with a drop-down medallion on the tassel featuring the official UOPX seal.
  • Satin stole in UOPX Red with the official University seal embroidered with UOPX Platinum thread
  • No hood should be worn

bachelor's regalia showing black gown, satin stole and mortarboard

Master’s regalia

*Includes Post-Master’s Family Nurse Practitioner Certificates

  • Black gown, worn closed, with oblong sleeves, open at the wrist with an arc at the sleeve front and oblong cut at the back of the sleeve
  • Black mortarboard cap for student and faculty
  • Black tassel with a drop-down medallion featuring the official UOPX seal
  • Master’s hood with UOPX Red and UOPX Platinum satin lining and velvet trim in the appropriate degree and college color (only one hood may be worn at a time)
  • No stole should be worn

master's regalia showing black gown, master's hood and mortarboard cap

Educational specialist (EdS) regalia

  • Doctoral gown, worn closed, with black velvet panels and black sleeve chevrons
  • Master’s hood with UOPX Red and UOPX Platinum satin lining and velvet trim in light blue for Education

education specialist regalia showing doctoral gown, hood and cap

Doctoral regalia

  • Doctoral gown, worn closed with UOPX Red velvet panels and sleeve chevrons
  • Velvet eight-sided tam in UOPX Red
  • Silk tassel in UOPX Platinum
  • Doctoral hood in UOPX Red with UOPX Platinum satin chevron and velvet border in the appropriate degree color

doctoral regalia showing gown, hood and velvet tam

Master's degree programs:

  • Master of Arts in Education (all specialties)
  • Master of Science in Counseling (all specialties)
  • Master of Counseling (all specialties)

light blue color spot

  • Master of Business Administration (all specialties)
  • Master of Management (all specialties)
  • Master of Science in Accountancy
  • Master of Arts in Organizational Management

drab color sample

Science gold

  • Master of Science in Computer Information Systems
  • Master of Information Systems
  • Master of Science in Cybersecurity

gold color sample

  • Master of Science in Nursing (all specialties, including MSN/FNP, MSN/MBA/HC, MSN/MHA, Post-Master’s FNP Certificate) 

phd degree gown

  • Master of Science in Psychology 
  • Master of Science in Industrial–Organizational Psychology 

phd degree gown

Salmon pink

  • Master of Health Administration (all specialties, including MHA/MBA) 
  • Master of Public Health 

salmon pink color sample

Peacock blue

  • Master of Science/Administration of Justice and Security 
  • Master of Public Administration 

peacock blue color sample

Educational Specialist degree program 

  • Education Specialist (EdS) 

light blue color spot

Doctoral degree programs – College of Doctoral Studies  

  • Doctor of Management (all specialties) 
  • Doctor of Organizational Leadership 
  • Doctor of Business Administration 

drab color sample

  • Doctor of Education (all specialties)

light blue color spot

  • Doctor of Health Administration 

salmon pink color sample

  • Doctor of Philosophy, PhD (All Specialties) 

dark blue color sample

  • Doctor of Nursing Practice 

apricot color sample

If you’re ready to earn your degree and embark on the path to graduation, learn more about the University’s more than 100 online programs aligned to upward of 300 careers. 

Photo of blog author Michael Feder smiling.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Michael Feder is a content marketing specialist at University of Phoenix, where he researches and writes on a variety of topics, ranging from healthcare to IT. He is a graduate of the Johns Hopkins University Writing Seminars program and a New Jersey native!

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Commencement

Regalia Information

Graduate at commencement wearing regalia

Academic regalia are the traditional dress for degree candidates participating in college, school and department convocations, as well as the university-wide commencement ceremony.

Additional information about the University Book Center and regalia can be found on the University Book Center website .

For those earning a bachelor’s degree, a black gown and mortarboard are worn. A black tassel with a custom UMCP medallion is attached. A custom UMCP red stole completes the regalia for bachelor’s degree candidates.

Master’s degree students wear a modified gown with longer sleeves, the mortarboard with an attached UMCP black tassel, custom UMCP red stole, and a hood. The hood color represents your specific degree or discipline.

The most elaborate regalia on display at Commencement are worn by those receiving a doctoral degree. A doctor's gown is a much fuller gown and is decorated with velvet lapels and three chevrons. In place of the mortarboard, doctoral students wear a tam, a velvet hat with a tassel attached that is much less rigid in construction.

Doctoral regalia is unique in the sense that it is often worn many times following the degree recipient's own graduation, especially for those who pursue careers in academia. It distinguishes the faculty member as a graduate of a specific institution. As is common for many universities, unique doctoral regalia was designed and customized for the University of Maryland College Park. Doctoral regalia may be purchased or rented.

Doctoral Candidates who are undecided or pending defense are strongly encouraged to request a rental gown before the deadline. Payment is deferred until rental regalia is picked-up.

*Rental Due Back Date: No Later Than June 3, 2024 ($500 Non-Return Fee)

Ordering and Purchasing Regalia

On campus (university book center).

Academic regalia is available for purchase from the University Book Center (UBC) beginning November 30 . The UBC will continue to provide regalia services up until Spring commencement (May 20, 2024). We strongly suggest purchasing early, as gown sizing and hood colors may be limited as the ceremony date approaches. Along with full regalia packages, the UBC will stock individual pieces, including the tassel, stole, and hood.

Doctoral Rental gown requests are in-store only. Doctoral Rental gowns will be available for pick-up beginning May 10, 2024. Contact Deddisun Won at [email protected] for early rental options or other questions.

Order Online (Oak Hall)

Regalia will be available to purchase online directly from Oak Hall for a limited time. Orders will ship directly to the customer. Please allow up to 30 days for bachelor's and master's packages and nine weeks for custom doctoral gowns. Shipping charge will apply.

Ordering link will be available below from October 23, 2023 until April 17, 2024

The University Book Center will host a Graduation Fair on March 5 & 6, 2024 , from 10:30 AM – 5:30 PM at the University Book Center in Adele H Stamp Student Union. The event will provide an opportunity to purchase regalia, order announcements, and class rings. Students can learn more about the senior class gift initiative and ways to participate and receive special pricing on diploma frames. Other services include custom doctoral regalia fittings, professional photography, and young alumni travel agency.

Gift : Receive a free Alumni T-shirt with regalia purchase (while supplies last).

Faculty Resources

The UBC will coordinate and order bulk department rental requests. Please contact your department’s commencement coordinator for assistance or visit the UBC bookstore for more information.

The UBC will handle tax-exempt orders and all bulk department faculty, staff, and administration regalia rentals. Requests are due no later than April 17 and will be available for pick-up the week of May 13 . The rented regalia must be returned to the University Book Center no later than June 4, 2024 , to avoid a $200 non-returned vendor fee.

For Individual faculty, staff, and administration Rentals , the ordering link will be available below from March 4 until April 17, 2024.

All online orders are shipped to the UBC for pick-up. Orders are prepaid online.

Regalia Support

Refunds and returns.

The UBC will offer a full refund for regalia returned no later than May 17, 2024 , in its original condition with proof of purchase.

Online order refunds and returns must be shipped back to Oak Hall within two weeks of receiving items, and they must be unopened. For exceptions and more information, contact: [email protected].

Deddisun Won, DM, Operations Email: [email protected] University Book Center Stamp Student Union

Visit OneTerp.com for more information.

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Graduates Celebrating at Main Commencement

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  17. Academic Regalia

    PhD Candidates. Students receiving a PhD degree who plan to participate in Commencement activities and rent their regalia do not need to pre-order or reserve a gown. You can pick up your rental gown at the Harvard Coop (Harvard Square location) between May 14 and May 23. Your rental size is guaranteed in stock.

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    The color of the crows-foot lapel emblem represents the school granting the degree. Note that the Law School gown is black, since it is for a professional doctorate, while the Ph.D. gown is crimson. As the oldest college in the United States, Harvard University has a long tradition of academic dress. Harvard gown facings bear crow's-feet ...

  21. What Are the Different Types of Regalia for Graduation?

    October 24, 2023 • 11 minutes At a glance Academic regalia refers to the cap and gown students wear at their graduation. Academic regalia is a ceremonial tradition at commencements. The term dates back to the 16th century, but the practice of incorporating academic dress started even earlier.

  22. Regalia Information

    The most elaborate regalia on display at Commencement are worn by those receiving a doctoral degree. A doctor's gown is a much fuller gown and is decorated with velvet lapels and three chevrons. In place of the mortarboard, doctoral students wear a tam, a velvet hat with a tassel attached that is much less rigid in construction.

  23. Pulse Uganda on Instagram

    Dr. Nicholus Nanyeenya, a newly-minted Ph.D. from Makerere University, is not just celebrating his academic success; he's poised to revolutionize HIV/AIDS treatment in Uganda. Clad in his vibran...