The Praelector at Graduation by Joe Cotton


Celebrating your academic achievement

When you have successfully completed your course you need to be presented for your degree. Your degree will be conferred on you at a graduation ceremony by the Vice-Chancellor or his appointed Deputy.

The Praelector at Graduation by Joe Cotton

Graduation (Congregation)

The Praelector, David Goode, is responsible on behalf of the College for presenting the graduands at Degree Congregations, which take place seven times per year. The Congregation at the end of June is principally reserved for the presentation of undergraduate degrees. In late June there are also four special days called ‘General Admissions’ at which MEng, M.Math., MSci., Vet.M.B., B.A. and B.Th. degrees are conferred. Further information about degree ceremonies is available from the University website.

A Degree may be conferred in absence although you are encouraged to attend the ceremony on other occasions when you can be presented in person. Nearly all find the day enjoyable for themselves, their families and friends, even if it does rain!

If you graduate in absence, you cannot graduate in person at a later date. Wolfson presents graduands in person at the Congregations in October, November, February, April, May, June (undergraduates only) and July. In January and March, Wolfson only presents students in absence.


There are two important steps for this procedure:

1. Whether you apply to graduate in person or in absence, you must apply via CamSIS Self-Service. Please see/download the guide at the bottom of this page. 

2. If you have applied to graduate in person, you must complete the online form. to confirm your booking. This form includes lunch booking and other important information for those who wish to graduate in person.

The schedule for the ceremony will be sent to you (via email), and will contain all the information that you need, on the Monday prior. Please note that all information will be sent to you via email so please make sure that your contact details (including mailing address) is current and updated in CamSIS. We will only use this address to send your transcript when it arrives after the ceremony. 

Requirements to proceed

  • Choose the date on which you wish to take your Degree (in CamSIS Self Service), whether in person or in absence and apply by the given deadline (see table below for deadline dates). For May or July congregations we may not be able to accommodate all applicants; if that is the case, we will suggest alternate dates.
  • Postgraduate students: confirmation of approval for the Degree MUST be received by the College from the Board of Graduate Studies. (This is particularly important to those graduating in July as most MPhil courses will not be approved in time. Please check with your department regarding the date when your degree might be approved by the Degree Committee BEFORE you apply to graduate in July.)
  • You must wear your academical dress.
  • Graduation Timing: Wolfson’s graduation is usually any time between 14.00 and 17.30, depending on the number of graduands from other Colleges. Your schedule will have full instructions on all aspects of the day. Please make sure that you are available for the whole day. 
  • You will not be able to attend in person, either to the Senate House or to attend the formal lunch, if you have outstanding College debts. Contact the Finance department (Tel: 01223 335913 or via email) to ensure that you have settled all bills.

If you are not sure whether these conditions have been met please email the Praelector's Secretary before you or your family and friends make travel arrangements.

Congregation dates

Academic term Date of congregation

Deadline for students to apply on CamSIS:

Easter Term 2019 Saturday 27 April  
  Saturday 18 May  
  Saturday 29 June*  
Long Vacation 2019 Saturday 20 July  
Michaelmas Term 2019 Saturday 26 October  
  Saturday 30 November  
Lent Term 2020 Saturday 25 January (in absence only) 09 January 2020
  Saturday 22 February 06 February 2020
  Saturday 21 March (in absence only) 05 March 2020
Easter Term 2020 Saturday 25 April 09 April 2020
  Saturday 16 May 30 April 2020
  Saturday 27 June* 30 April 2020
Long Vacation 2020 Saturday 18 July 02 July 2020

* (General Admission- MEng, M.Math., MSci., Vet.M.B., B.A., and B.Th. degrees only)

Degree Day

The schedule for the ceremony will be sent to you (via email), and will contain all the information that you need, on the Monday prior.

Due to safety considerations the number of guests permitted in the Senate House is limited to three per graduand and entry is by ticket only. If a guest is already a member of the University’s Roll of Regent House an entry ticket is not required, but a gown must be worn and only admitted if the University Marshal grants access due to available capacity. Guest tickets will be issued to you at the dress inspection on the morning of the Congregation. Photography is not allowed in the Senate House.

Your guests will not be able to walk alongside you to the Senate House. Please make sure your guests either walk, cycle or take a taxi to the Senate House separately. There is no car parking facility near the Senate House. Our Porters will be able to assist you with booking a taxi, if you so wish.

The ceremony at the Senate House is usually about 50 minutes long. Degree congregations are not suitable for children under five years of age.

Celebratory meals

With the exception of July (for one-year full-time and PhD students), you are invited to a Formal Celebratory Lunch at Wolfson College on the day of your degree ceremony. Up to 3 additional guests can be booked at £20.00 per guest.  Formal invitations are not issued. Children aged ten and under receive their meal free of charge. Kindly note that the lunch is free for the graduand. 

Because of the very large numbers proceeding in July, those taking one-year full-time degrees and PhDs will not be offered a lunch, but a Celebratory Formal Dinner with their guests on the Friday preceding the ceremony.

The Master of Arts (MA) Degree (apart from certain holders of University and College Offices)

The degree of MA may only be conferred upon BAs of this University at any time after six years have passed following the first term of residence, provided that at least two years have elapsed since admission as BA. Essentially, therefore, the MA may be conferred in or after the twentieth term after matriculation but there is a restriction of 2 Guest tickets to the Senate House. Former affiliated students should remember that their first term in Cambridge is counted as their fourth for these purposes. MA degrees cannot be conferred in person in July due to high numbers of graduands.


If you have completed your course and it has been a while before you wish to graduate, you will not be able to login on to CamSIS. Please follow instructions on the page below to be able to register for the 'Extended Self-Service' which will then allow you to apply to graduate.

Click here.