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Regalia

A traditional black cap and gown is required for your participation in the commencement ceremony. Caps are worn with a colored tassel indicating the degree being awarded.

Master’s candidates will also receive a hood, with the color indicating field of study.

Ordering

Bachelor and Master students

Ordering regalia has never been easier! Students receiving either a Bachelors or Masters may order their gown, cap, and tassel by completing the online order form.

Doctoral candidates

Doctoral candidates may complete the online order form for pick up at Textbook Alley before the ceremony or in York Arena Theatre the day of commencement.

Regalia history

The use of academic dress stems from costumes worn in universities in the 14th and 15th centuries, particularly at Cambridge and Oxford in England. Since colonial times, it has been worn in the United States and was standardized by an Intercollegiate Code in 1895.

Gowns

The major distinguishing characteristics of the gowns are the sleeves, styled in the following fashions.

  • bachelor, long pointed
  • master, oblong
  • doctor and specialist, bell shaped

The doctor’s gown has a velvet collar, facing and three bars on the sleeves. The specialist’s gown differs from a doctor’s in that it has no sleeve bars.

Masters, specialists and doctors wear hoods lined with the official colors of the university from which the degree is granted. They vary in size and shape to indicate the several degrees. The doctor’s hood is the largest and most lavishly decorated. The color of the velvet that circles the opening of the hood shows the degree earned: light blue for doctor of education, dark blue for doctor of philosophy and peacock blue for doctor of public administration.

Caps and tassels

Caps are mortar boards with the tassel worn over the left front quadrant. The tassel’s color indicates the academic program area.

Degree designation

Bachelor’s degree

Degree Color name Color swatch
Arts White White
Business administration Sapphire blue Sapphire blue
Engineering Orange Orange
Fine arts Brown Brown
Music Pink Pink
Nursing Apricot Apricot
Science Golden yellow Yellow
Social work Citron Citron

Master’s degree

Degree Color name Color swatch
Arts and development administration White White
Business administration and accountancy Sapphire blue Sapphire blue
Engineering Orange Orange
Fine arts Brown Brown
Medicine Green Green
Music Pink Pink
Nursing Apricot Apricot
Public Administration Peacock blue Peacock blue
Science Golden yellow Yellow
Social work Citron Citron

Doctoral and specialist degree

Degree Color name Color swatch
Audiology (doctoral) Gray Gray
Education (doctoral) Light blue Light blue
Education (specialist) Light blue Light blue
Philosophy Dark blue Dark blue
Public administration Peacock blue Peacock blue