Degree Days and Graduating

Christ Church is very pleased to facilitate the taking of degrees by members of the House and looks forward to welcoming its graduands to celebrate this important achievement.

The academic arrangements, including formal submission of degree candidates to the University at the Sheldonian Theatre, are undertaken by the Censors of Degrees, who are currently Dr Ronald Truman and Professor Judith Pallot.

The organisational and hospitality arrangements are currently made through the Academic Administrator, Miss Sarah Hope, Censors’ Office (tel.: 01865 286574, e-mail: sarah.hope@chch.ox.ac.uk)

Booking a Degree Ceremony

Current Undergraduate and Postgraduate taught students will receive an email invitation in November of their final year inviting them to log into the eVision degree ceremonies booking system.

Research students granted leave to supplicate will receive an email invitation with information about booking a degree ceremony.

Students who have already completed their course (or wish to have their MA conferred in person) may request to be put on the waiting list for their preferred degree date. If you would like to receive a waiting list request form and further information about the dates Christ Church is presenting candidates at, please email Sarah Hope.

It is possible to be awarded a degree “in absentia” (i.e., without being present at the ceremony). If you wish to have a degree conferred in this manner, you must notify Sarah Hope, the Academic Administrator, a month before the date of the intended degree ceremony.

Important Information

Please note that a candidate may be presented in person for only one degree at each ceremony. This will normally be the superior of the degrees for which he or she is eligible. A candidate may, however, be awarded other degrees in absentia at the same ceremony at which a degree is also awarded in person.

Once a candidate’s name has been entered, he or she may not withdraw from the ceremony. If a candidate is unable to be present having been entered, the degree will be conferred in absentia.

Academic Dress

Graduands are required to wear academic dress with sub-fusc clothing.

Please note: the Vice-Chancellor and Proctors have recently informed all colleges that they intend to be strict about enforcing correct dress at degree ceremonies, even to the point of denying graduands entry to the Sheldonian Theatre if they are not correctly dressed. Hence, in order that the degree day of Christ Church graduands should not be marred (it would not be in the power of the Censors of degrees to make ad hoc relaxations), graduands are urged to follow the dress code below meticulously.

Sub-fusc

1.         Dark suit

2.         Dark socks

3.         Black shoes

4.         Plain white collared shirt

5.         White bow tie

OR

1.         Dark skirt with black tights or stockings, or dark trousers with dark socks

2.         Black shoes

3.         White blouse or plain white collared shirt

4.         Black ribbon or white bow tie

Although recent changes made by the university to sub-fusc regulations allow it, Christ Church would wish the wearing of black bow ties or black neck ties to be avoided. 

Any queries about the dress code may be addressed to Sarah Hope.

Gowns

The College will be pleased to arrange for the hire of any gowns you may require. A form will be sent to you detailing the academic dress you will need upon reserving your place at a ceremony.

For undergraduate degrees (BA, BFA, Undergraduate Masters) – upon entering the ceremony, graduands will be required to wear the commoner’s or scholar’s gown together with the academic cap and sub-fusc (as above). On conferment of the degree the BA/BFA gown and hood is assumed.

For higher degrees – upon entering the ceremony, graduands will be required to wear either the graduate gown or gown/and hood of their present Oxford degree status together with the academic cap and sub-fusc (as above). On conferment of the degree the appropriate gown/and hood is assumed.

For MA degrees – upon entering the ceremony, graduands will be required to wear the BA gown and hood together with the academic cap and sub-fusc (as above). On conferment of the degree the MA gown and hood is assumed.

Information on the correct gowns for each degree can be found here.

Arrangements on the Day:

Spectators at the Ceremony

Relatives and friends may attend the ceremony but space is limited and tickets are required for all ceremonies. The number of spectator tickets available to each graduand is indicated on the table on the main Degree Days webpage. You will need to confirm how many tickets you would like when you complete the Degree Day Booking Form.

The University advise that the ceremony is not suitable for children under the age of seven. Doors open about half an hour before the ceremony and it is advisable to arrive in good time. Guests will be directed by the Security staff on the door.

Photographs

Gillman and Soame will be covering the degree days and will be taking photographs at Christ Church immediately after lunch. 

Lunch

After the Degree Ceremony in the Sheldonian Theatre, or Examination Schools, the pleasure of the company of new graduands is requested at luncheon on the invitation of the Governing Body. We hope that graduands will be able to stay for lunch. Guest places at lunch are, however, limited and priority is given to (up to three) guests of those having an undergraduate degree conferred. Occasionally a further guest place may be available. Also, whenever possible, the guests of other graduands are accommodated, though availability may not be known until a week or two in advance of the occasion. We shall do all we can to welcome as many guests as possible, subject always to the limits of space available. 

Different arrangements apply to the large Christ Church specific degree day at the beginning of May when it is possible to offer hospitality to all graduands and their three guests in Hall.

Preliminary drinks are served from 1.00 pm Luncheon will follow at 1.30 pm.

Data Protection

Graduands, guests, and staff attending should be aware that graduation ceremonies are regarded as public events. Names and degrees of graduands are published in the graduate programme. Audio and visual images of the ceremony are publicly available via the sale of personalised videos of the ceremony.

Degree Certificates

Once you have your degree conferred at a degree ceremony either in person or in absentia, you will automatically receive a Degree Certificate. This will be sent to you by recorded delivery. It is essential that you put the address to which you would like your certificate posted on your degree ceremony booking form.

If you have passed your examinations and have not had your degree conferred at a degree ceremony, or if you have attended a ceremony but require proof of your award to present to a third party, you can request a Degree Confirmation letter free of charge. This statement is on official University letter-headed paper. This will state that you have successfully completed your course at Oxford, the date when this happened, and show the classification you received (e.g. First, 2:1, 2:2, Third).

The name which you held during your course of study will be the name on the Degree Certificate and Confirmation of Degree statement. The only retrospective changes that can be made are where an administrative error has occurred or where we are required to make a retrospective change under the provisions of the Gender Recognition Act 2004.

If you have changed your name following completion of your course of study (for example, through marriage, or by Deed Poll) and wish to demonstrate to a prospective employer or education institution that your Degree Certificate belongs to you, supporting documentation showing the name change should accompany the Certificate.

For full details on degree certificates please see the Examination School website.

MA Degrees

BA and BFA graduands are entitled to proceed in due course to the MA degree, which may be taken seven years following original matriculation (in or after the 21st term from matriculation). Please note that this does not apply to those who take undergraduate Masters degrees (e.g. M.Eng, MMaths, M.PhysPhil, MChem, MBiochem, MPhys).

A £40 fee is payable. MAs are automatically members of the Convocation, conferring certain voting rights (e.g. in the election of the Chancellor of the University). Members of the House who are members of Convocation are also entitled to dine at High Table by implied invitation, and at their own request and modest expense, provided arrangements are made in advance with the Steward's Office.

Bookings for MA conferrals are made in the same way as all other degrees.