Academic dress

Learn about what to wear at the graduation ceremonies, dress code and where to hire graduation robes.

Graduation is a formal occasion and you must wear academic dress for any Victoria graduation ceremonies, otherwise you won’t be allowed to participate and your qualification will be conferred in absentia.

What you’ll need to wear is dependent on the qualification you’ll receive. If you’re receiving more than one qualification you’ll need to wear the hood or stole for the qualification that you choose to cross the stage with.

    If you are graduating with a diploma or certificate and hold a degree, you will need to wear the academic dress appropriate to your degree.

    Embellishing your graduation regalia with garments of honour from your cultural tradition, such as a korowai or ta’ovala, is a welcome enrichment to the colour of the ceremony. These are worn under the hood or stole.

    Academic Dress Hire

    The items you’ll need can be hired from Academic Dress Hire. This is the Wellington Branch of Graduate Women New Zealand (GWNZ), a voluntary organisation of female graduates which raises funds through their hire fees to support academic scholarships and other educational causes.

    To hire academic dress and/or purchase a hood/stole:

    • complete the academic dress hire form with online payment at Grad Gear

    An additional fee of $20 is payable with all late orders. Orders received without payment will not be processed.

    A receipt is issued to you at the time of ordering online or within four weeks of your cash payment order being received at the Academic Dress Hire office. This acknowledges your order and informs you of collection and return times.

    If you’re experiencing financial hardship and are unable to cover the cost of academic dress, contact Student Finance to discuss possible assistance.

    If you're unable to apply online, it is possible to accept cash or cheques. You'll need to download and print a form, complete and post it with payment. Please be aware it will take longer to receive and process than online applications. To use this method, download the Academic dress hire form.

    Charges

    Hire fees:

    • Gown—$40
    • Hood or stole—$20
    • Trencher—$20

    Hoods and stoles may also be bought ready-made.

    Purchase prices:

    • Bachelor Hood—$95
    • Honours’ Hood—$95
    • Master’s Hood—$75
    • Master’s Stole—$95

    PhD graduands who wish to purchase full academic dress should contact Academic Dress Hire.

    Collecting your academic dress

    Academic dress for graduation ceremonies can be collected from MY109, Murphy Building, Kelburn Parade. Bring your academic dress receipt or student ID card when collecting.

    May graduation collection times

    Ceremonies 1 and 2, taking place Tuesday 15 May

    Collection times: Friday 11 May 12pm–6pm, Monday 14 May 9am–6pm, Tuesday 15 May 9am–5pm.

    Ceremony 3, taking place Wednesday 16 May

    Collection times: Friday 11 May 12pm–6pm, Monday 14 May 9am–6pm, Tuesday 15 May 9am–6pm, Wednesday 16 May 9am–12.30pm.

    Ceremony 4, taking place Wednesday 16 May

    Collection times: Tuesday 15 May 5pm–7pm, Wednesday 16 May 9am–5pm.

    Ceremonies 5 and 6, taking place Thursday 17 May

    Collection times: Wednesday 16 May 12pm–7pm, Thursday 17 May 9am–5pm.

    How to wear your academic dress

    The video below shows how to wear your academic dress. Before the ceremony there will be university staff available to help you.

    Dress code for graduation ceremonies

    Graduation ceremonies are formal occasions and we request that graduands dress appropriately. A shirt and trousers, dress or similar standard of formal clothing is advised. Whilst optional, a collared shirt and tie or buttoned clothing are helpful in attaching your hood securely. For health and safety reasons all graduands must wear footwear inside the Michael Fowler Centre, and while crossing the stage to receive their award.

    Doctoral degrees

    • Black or scarlet Cambridge Master of Arts gown
    • Hood or stole in qualification colour
    • John Knox cap (PhD) or black trencher with tassel

    Master’s degrees

    • Black Cambridge Master of Arts gown
    • Hood or stole in qualification colour
    • Black trencher with tassel

    Bachelor’s degrees

    • Black Cambridge Bachelor of Arts gown
    • Hood in qualification colour
    • Black trencher with tassel

    Diplomas and certificates

    • Black Cambridge Bachelor of Arts gown
    • Victoria University of Wellington stole

    Returning your academic dress

    When you return your academic dress, be sure to bring your receipt. Academic dress can be returned at the Michael Fowler Centre immediately after your ceremony.

    It can also be returned to MU109, Murphy Building, Kelburn Parade.

    Failure to return regalia on time will result in a $100 late return fee. If you don’t return your regalia at all, you will be charged for its total replacement value plus any debt collection costs incurred.

    May graduation return times

    Ceremonies 1, 2 and 3

    You must return your academic dress to the academic dress desk at the Michael Fowler Centre immediately after your ceremony.

    Ceremonies 4, 5 and 6

    You can also return your academic dress to the academic dress desk at the Michael Fowler Centre immediately after your ceremony. Alternatively, return it to MU109, Murphy building, Kelburn Parade on Friday 18 May 9am–6pm, or Saturday 19 May 10am–1pm.