Graduands instructions

Information and instructions for graduands. Please read to ensure a smooth and enjoyable graduation day for you and your guests.

A female graduate in red robes looking into the distance.



Graduation ceremonies are held on central campus in the Octagon Centre. The full address of the venue is:

The Octagon Centre
University of Sheffield
Western Bank
S10 2TN

Don't forget to bring:

  • Your eticket showing your seat numbers
  • Robe order confirmation
  • Photography order confirmation (if appropriate)

The suggested timetable for getting to the venue is as follows:

Time of Ceremony

Arrive on campus (approx)

Collect robes

Seated in the hall

Doors to hall closed








9.15 –11.30am














The safety of visitors to the university has always been and continues to be, our highest priority. We therefore have security procedures in place at our graduation ceremonies. Bags will be searched and there will be person searches on entry. Please do not bring large bags or suitcases to the Octagon Centre or the Sheffield Students' Union. Alcohol is not permitted in the Octagon Centre and anyone who appears to be under the influence of alcohol will not be permitted entry.

Graduation Enquiries Desk

The Graduation Enquiries Desk is located in the foyer of the Octagon Centre and will be open from 8.15am to 5.00pm each day (8.15am to 7.45pm on Thursday).

Parking and travel

We recommend using public transport or park and ride to get to graduation.

Parking on campus is limited. We recommend the following car parks if you are travelling by car: 

QPark Durham Road next to the Octagon QPark Rockingham approximately half a mile from the Octagon Centre. A map detailing all the car parks in the city centre can be found here.

Sufficient parking spaces cannot be guaranteed, so leave plenty of time if you must bring a car.

Due to the limited amount of space available we regret that we are unable to allocate parking spaces for disabled graduands or guests. If your guests have mobility difficulties, we would recommend that these guests are dropped off at the Octagon Centre prior to parking the car. 

Robe collection

You should collect your robes from Uni Central, Level 4, Students' Union, according to the timetable below:

Time of Ceremony

Robe Collection Time


7.30am - 8.45am


9.15am - 11.30am


12.15pm - 3.00pm


3.45pm - 5.45pm

Please ensure you return all robes to Uni Central by 6.00pm on the day of your ceremony (8.30pm on Thursday). If you have paid to retain your robes for a longer period, you are responsible for the return of robes to Ede & Ravenscroft Limited.

**Please note: hair grips are not provided by the University or Ede & Ravenscroft. You are therefore advised to bring them with you if you wish to secure your hat**

Door opening times and seating

Doors to the Convocation Hall in the Octagon

Doors to Convocation Hall, will open 45 minutes prior to the start time of the ceremony.

Graduands must be robed and in their designated seat in the hall 40 minutes prior to the start of the ceremony.

Guests should be in their allocated seats 20 minutes prior to the start of the ceremony.

Doors to the hall will be closed 10 minutes prior to the start of the ceremony. Graduands and guests not seated by that time will not be admitted and guest seats may be given away to those without tickets.


Please ensure that you have either printed out your etickets showing your seat numbers, or have an electronic copy with you when arriving at the Octagon Centre. You must also make sure your guests have copies. Admittance to the hall will not be granted without etickets.

Graduands are required to sit in your allocated seat and remain seated in order to enable Marshals to check that you are present and in the correct ceremony order.  Arriving later than the times stated below, sitting in the wrong seat or moving from the seat you have been allocated will result in you being marked as absent and removed from the presentation list.

Graduands must be robed and seated by the following times at the latest:

9.30am Ceremonies - graduands seated no later than 8.50am

12.15pm Ceremonies - graduands seated no later than 11.35am

3.45pm Ceremonies - graduands seated no later than 3.05pm

6.30pm Ceremonies - graduands seated no later than 5.50pm

During the ceremony

  • Once graduands are seated in the hall, Marshals will carry out registration. It is important that you sit in the seat you have been allocated and stay seated to avoid being marked as absent and removed from the presentation list.
  • When indicated, please stand for the arrival of the processions and remain standing until the Presiding Officer has declared the ceremony open.
  • A Marshal will signal to you when it is your turn to be presented. You should immediately approach the platform by the steps to the left-hand side and join the queue. Once on the platform, you should give your name to the Marshal at the top of the steps to confirm that you are in your correct place for presentation. When your name is announced, the Marshal will release you and you should walk across the platform, doff your cap to the Presiding Officer and then proceed off the platform by the steps at the far right and return to your seat in the hall as directed by the Floor Marshals. You will be handed your certificate at the foot of the stairs as you leave the platform.
  • Please note: nothing is to be brought on to stage when you walk across.

  • At the end of the ceremony, please stand for the departure of the processions.
  • Graduates will then process out of the hall under the direction of the Floor Marshals. Graduates should arrange to meet their guests outside the Octagon Centre following the ceremony. You should not return to the hall once you have processed out.

Other information


Guests are permitted to take photographs but this must be done from their seat so as not to obstruct the view of other guests or interfere with proceedings.  Tripods and other equipment are not permitted and there is strictly no admittance onto the platform at any time.

Official photographers

The Students' Union has arranged for Ede and Ravenscroft Photography to be located in the Students' Union for the duration of the ceremonies.

Regulations regarding academic robes

The University's Regulation 17 concerning Academic Costume states that: "A graduand and any other person who is to be presented at a Degree Congregation shall wear the appropriate academic dress over suitable clothes of a subdued colour, or Naval, Military or Air Force uniform. The Marshal may exclude from presentation any candidate whose attire does not, in the Marshal's opinion, comply with this regulation".

Dress code

The ceremonies are formal occasions and we recommend that candidates dress smartly. We welcome national dress and military uniforms. Jeans, t-shirts, trainers and similar casual attire are not considered appropriate for graduation ceremonies.


We do not recommend bringing children into the ceremony, due to the length and formal nature of proceedings. As an alternative, guests with children may wish to watch the ceremony in the Students' Union Auditorium, where the atmosphere is informal and tickets are not required. Children in the main ceremony hall must have a ticket if they are 3 years old or over. We respectfully request that children are taken out of the hall if they become noisy or restless during proceedings. Children are not permitted on the stage at anytime.

Due to health and safety restrictions, prams and pushchairs are not permitted in the hall and should be left in the complementary cloakroom.

Mobile Phones

Please ensure that all mobile phones are switched off for the duration of the ceremony. Please don't set your telephone to silent mode as the signals can interfere with our sound system. Mobile phones are not permitted on the platform.

Movement during the ceremony

Wherever possible, guests are requested to remain seated for the duration of the ceremony.  Please note that anyone leaving the hall may be requested to wait until a suitable break in proceedings before being allowed re-entry.

Live stream

There will be a professional video recording taken of each graduation ceremony, this will be streamed live to the Auditorium in the Students' Union to enable family and friends without allocated seats to see the ceremony. Each ceremony is also streamed live on our website. Graduates and guests seated in Convocation Hall should be aware that they might appear on the live stream and on the recordings.

Dining and activities on campus

Find out what is going on throughout the week here.

Lost property and lost children

Please hand in lost property to the Enquiries Desk in the Octagon Centre. Staff at the Enquiries Desk will also deal with children who become separated from parents or carers.

Data Protection

For details regarding Data Protection and graduation.

Further information

More information regarding the ceremonies can be found on our main Postgraduate web pages.

Should you have a question which cannot be answered on any of our web pages, please email

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