Commencement ceremonies convey the scholarly tradition and formal tone befitting of
an academic ceremony. As such, Towson University is guided by the American Council
on Education's Academic Costume Code. All commencement participants must strive to maintain a measure of decorum consonant
with the occasion.
Graduates choosing not to abide by the regalia guidelines will be asked to leave the
assembly area and will not be permitted to participate in the Commencement ceremony.
Purchase Regalia by November 27
The deadline for registering for a Winter Commencement ceremony was November 27, 2017
at 11:59 p.m. Exceptions for purchasing regalia or participating in a Winter ceremony
cannot be made after this date.
- Candidates who miss the November 27 deadline to purchase regalia or who are applied to graduate after November 27 will be invited to participate in a Spring Commencement ceremony (held
May 23 – 25, 2018).
- Please note, graduation is the process of being awarded a degree after successfully
completing credit hours and other degree requirements. Commencement events are the
congratulatory ceremonies that celebrate graduate.
- Commencement events have limited space availability based upon venue size. Therefore, the
university must assign deadlines in order to ensure that the numbers of commencement
participants do not exceed venue capacity.
Traditional academic regalia will be worn by all candidates for graduation and faculty
participating in the commencement ceremonies. Only students completing all degree requirements in the current term and who are approved to
graduate by the Graduation Office are authorized to purchase the approved TU regalia and participate in commencement.
Student Regalia Pricing
All students approved for graduation who choose to participate in Commencement must
purchase regalia. Candidates are not permitted to use previously worn regalia or to
share regalia with another graduate.
Register to participate in Winter Commencement by purchasing your regalia online. The deadline to order regalia (and register to participate in Commencement) is November
27. If you miss the deadline for purchasing regalia, you will not be allowed to participate
in Winter Commencement. Exceptions will not be made.
- Baccalaureate gown, cap and tassel purchase: $95.00
- Master's gown, hood, cap and tassel purchase: $105.00
- Doctoral gown and tam rental: $100.00
An Early Bird Discount of $25.00 will be applied to all regalia purchases or doctoral
gown rentals made before November 20. The deadline to order regalia is November 27,
2017 at 11:59 p.m.
Regalia guidelines will be strictly enforced on ceremony day and the university reserves
the right to request that candidates change inappropriate attire before they will
be allowed to participate in the Commencement ceremony.
- Master's and bachelor's candidates wear a black, mid-calf gown with the university
seal embroidered on the lapel. The gown may not be altered in any way.
- Appropriate business or business casual attire must be worn beneath the regalia. Shorts
and tennis shoes are discouraged unless needed for mobility reasons.
- Master's and baccalaureate candidates wear the black mortar board (cap) designated
by the university. The caps are elasticized--one-size fits all.
- The mortar board should be worn with the front point over the forehead below the front
hairline, so the flat board is parallel to the floor. The cap is not worn on the back
of the head with the board pointing upward.
- The Academic Costume Code prohibits the decoration of caps (mortar boards) in recognition
that Commencement is a formal occasion. As such, the university strongly discourages
the decoration of caps. Graduates who choose to wear a decorated cap during the Commencement
ceremony must follow strict guidelines.
- Master's and baccalaureate candidates wear all black tassels designated by the university.
Multi-colored or adorned tassels are not permitted.
- Baccalaureate candidates traditionally wear the tassel on the right side of the mortar
board until the President formally confers the degrees upon the graduates during the
ceremony. Master's candidates wear the tassel on the left side prior to degree conferral.
- Degree hoods are worn only by master's and doctoral candidates.
- The degree level, as specified by the Academic Costume Code, determines hood dimensions.
The gold and white satin lining represents Towson University colors. The velvet band
color on the front of the hood signifies the degree earned.
Military Religious & Attire
- Members of the military may wear their military dress uniform and members of religious
orders may wear their religious attire in place of the academic regalia.
- Contact the University Store at email@example.com by November 27 to obtain approval
to wear military or religious attire, register for the ceremony, and be guaranteed
Medallions, Stoles, Pins and Cords
Adornments include any addition to the issued traditional academic regalia and may
include, but are not limited to: academic cords, stoles, sashes, medallions, pins
and other decorations. Corsages and floral embellishments may not be worn on the regalia
or cap, nor may regalia be altered or modified in any way.
Reglia adornments that are motivated by animosity against a person or group because
of race, color, religion, sexual orientation, gender, disability, national origin,
or homelessness, or which infringe on the rights and freedom of others will not be
The university welcomes students, academic programs and student organizations to express
their identity and values through the addition of appropriate adornment to the standard
TU regalia within the guidelines set forth. Students not in compliance with the requirements
of this policy may be asked to remove and/or conceal any unapproved regalia adornment.
- Medals or medallions may only be worn by graduates of the Honors College (University Scholars) and student-athletes. Medallions may not be worn by candidates
for any other designation.
- Braided cords only recognize university-approved academic honors. The list of organizations approved to distribute academic cords has been determined by the Office of the Provost in consultation with academic colleges.
- Academic programs and registered student organizations wishing to provide members
or participants with an academic cord to be worn at Commencement must obtain prior
approval from the Office of the Provost. The Academic Cord Request Form must be submitted
by October 15 for use at Winter Commencement or by March 15 for use at Spring Commencement.
- Organizations or groups outside of the Division of Academic Affairs are not permitted
to distribute cords for graduates to wear during commencement.
stoles, sashes, and pins
- Stoles or sashes (long bands of cloth worn around the neck) may not be more than four inches
wide and/or 65 inches long (32.5 inches on each side). A maximum of two stoles or sashes may be worn.
- Organizational pins may not exceed 1.5 square inches. A maximum of three pins representing a registered student organization or academic
program may be worn.