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A student being capped at graduation

Description of Regalia items

Members of the University must appear at its public ceremonies in their prescribed dress. For graduation you must hire, borrow, or buy the appropriate academic regalia as listed below:

  • University of Otago Bachelors regalia sampleGown – there are four types of gowns: a black Bachelor's gown, a black Master's gown, a maroon gown for PhD, DClinDent, EdD, DBA, and DMA degrees, and a scarlet gown for other doctoral degrees

  • Cap – the cap for all Masters' and Bachelors' degrees is a black trencher or 'mortar board' (as pictured right). Doctoral graduates wear a black velvet cap

  • Hood – this hangs around your neck and down your back and the colour of the hood lining denotes the degree

Regalia is worn for only one degree at a time, for instance you should not mix a Master's gown with a Bachelor's hood.

Only one hood is worn at a time, therefore if you are receiving two degrees, you should choose which hood you will wear at the ceremony. While you do not need the second hood for ceremony itself, you may still wish to hire this for photographs.

Regalia hire volunteers and graduation marshals will advise you on wearing your regalia correctly.

Which Regalia items to wear

Graduating with a Degree

If you are receiving a degree (including a doctoral degree) you need a trencher (or cap), gown, and hood. You must wear your gown and hood to the ceremony, and carry your trencher (or cap) until you have received your degree.

Graduating with a Second or Postgraduate Degree

If you are receiving a second or postgraduate degree, you wear the regalia appropriate to your new degree. As you will be capped again, you carry your trencher (or cap) until after you receive this degree.

Graduating with a Postgraduate Diploma

If you are receiving a postgraduate diploma, you wear the regalia appropriate to your degree (even if you obtained your degree from another institution), as diplomas do not have their own unique regalia.

As you are not being "capped", you must wear your trencher (or cap) while you are crossing the stage. Men should remove their trencher (or cap) for the National Anthem.

Graduating with a Diploma (including a Postgraduate Diploma), No Previous Degree

If you are receiving a diploma (including a postgraduate diploma) and do not hold a degree, you wear a black Bachelor's gown, without a hood or trencher.

What to wear with your Regalia

Graduate wearing korowaiThere is no prescribed dress code, but most graduands chose to wear smart, semi-formal daywear with their regalia. Please be aware that Graduation day involves a lot of walking, including going up and down stairs, so very high heels may not be practical.

Korowai and equivalent ceremonial garments of other cultures may be worn with academic regalia.

Hiring Regalia

Academic regalia is normally hired from Graduate Women New Zealand (Otago Branch). Proceeds provide funds for fellowships, awards, and grants.

You will select the regalia that you wish to hire and pay the associated charge by credit card within your eVision student portal. Please ensure that you make your payment at least five weeks before your graduation ceremony.

If you are graduating with a diploma or a postgraduate diploma, and obtained your degree from another institution, please note that we cannot guarantee the availability of regalia from anywhere other than the University of Otago.

If you have other family members who hold a degree and wish to hire regalia for photographic purposes, they must contact one of the regalia conveners for your ceremony directly to arrange this.

Information about collecting and returning your regalia, and contact details for the regalia conveners will be sent to you via email approximately 6 weeks prior to your graduation ceremony.

Payment for Regalia hire

You will be able to see how much you need to pay for regalia within your eVision student portal, and pay by credit card.

Purchasing Regalia

If you are wanting to purchase regalia to wear at your ceremony, please ensure that you allow plenty of time for this to be made and sent to you.

For further information about purchasing regalia including the cost, please contact Étude Classique (located in Auckland), directly. A link to their contact details is below.

Étude Classique website

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