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Preparing for your ceremony

Academic dress

Ede & Ravenscroft are the only official suppliers of Open University academic dress. If you would like to wear academic dress at your ceremony you must arrange the hire after you have booked your ceremony place and at least 21 days before your ceremony date. Be advised that wearing academic dress is not compulsory at your ceremony but most graduates do elect to do so.

Open University academic dress consists of a robe and hood. Mortarboards, hats or bonnets are not worn at our degree ceremonies and graduates are not allowed to wear these or any other institutional / non institutional academic dress at the ceremony.

If you would like to wear a mortarboard, hat or bonnet for your official photographs, there will be some available to borrow for this purpose only from the photography studios.

The academic dress that you will wear for your ceremony will be specific to the qualification you have completed. Different robe and hood colours signify graduates of different qualification types. If you would like to view the complete range of Open University academic dress, you can do so here.

Why we recommend Ede & Ravenscroft for gown supply:

  • Correct colours
    • Hiring through Ede & Ravenscroft ensures you will be wearing the correct OU colours on your ceremony day
  • Convenience
    • Once you've arranged your hire, sit back and relax, your robes will be at the ceremony venue (freshly cleaned and pressed) waiting for you to collect on the day.
    • Assistance with putting your robes on - Ede & Ravenscroft staff will be on-hand to assist you with your robes to ensure you look your best on your day of celebration.
    • After the ceremony, just return your robes to the dedicated point within the venue.
    • Ede & Ravenscroft offer gowning and photography services – no need to coordinate with different suppliers.
  • Service
    • Ede & Ravenscroft staff will be on hand throughout the day to assist you with your gown and hood. They will also ensure your hood is correctly positioned just prior to you going on stage, ensuring you look your best in your photos.

To find out more about academic dress or to hire academic dress for your ceremony day, visit or telephone +44 (0) 1223 861854.

For those students who are awaiting their final module result, we recommend that you do not arrange the hire of academic dress until your qualification completion has been confirmed.


On the day of your ceremony, Ede & Ravenscroft will have a number of photography studios set up to offer individual portraits of graduates as well as group photographs with your family and friends.

We would encourage you to pre-book a photography package for your ceremony day, visit or telephone +44 (0) 1223 861854 at least 10 working days before.

In addition to the studio photography available on your ceremony day, Ede & Ravenscroft photographers will be capturing images of graduates as they cross the stage. These do not need to be pre-booked. At some venues, these images can be purchased shortly after the ceremony from the Ede & Ravenscroft sales stand.

Alternatively, these presentation photographs can be viewed in the online gallery on the Ede & Ravenscroft website a few days after the ceremony date, where they are available to purchase. A password will be required to access the photo gallery which will be sent to you by email approximately 2 weeks before your ceremony date. If you do not want your photograph included in the online gallery, please email to request its removal.


On your ceremony day, your name will be announced to the congregation as you are presented to the Presiding Officer. If your name is difficult to pronounce or not pronounced as it is written, please contact us 4 weeks before your ceremony date to advise us of the correct pronunciation of your name.

Additional requirements

If you indicated that you or any of your guests have additional requirements when making your ceremony booking – e.g. wheelchair users, difficulty negotiating stairs, etc. – you will be contacted by a member of our Ceremonies team in the weeks before your ceremony. They will contact you to request the details of your / your guest’s additional requirement so that we can take these into consideration when making our arrangements for the ceremony day.

Visit your ceremony information page

Ahead of your ceremony day, you should familiarise yourself with the information page for your specific ceremony. This page can be accessed by visiting our List of ceremonies page and then by clicking the ‘View’ button next to your chosen ceremony.

This page contains helpful information such as a schedule for the ceremony day, where registration / photography / academic dress collection, etc. will be located and important details about the venue itself (i.e. facilities available, travel information, etc.). The page will also contain a link to a map of the venue to help you get around on your ceremony day.

Contact us

The Ceremonies Centre is open and ready to support you.

Ceremonies Centre
PO Box 123
Walton Hall
Milton Keynes
+44 (0) 1908 541079

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