Academic Costume

All graduates must wear the proper academic regalia to participate in the commencement ceremony.

Undergraduate and master's caps and gowns may be purchased from the Ohio State Bookstore and other campus area bookstores.

PhD caps and gowns may be purchased or rented at Ohio State Bookstores only. PhD regalia purchase orders must be placed at the Ohio State Bookstore by 4:30 PM, Friday, March 22. PhD regalia rental orders must be placed at the Ohio State Bookstore by 4:30 PM, Friday, April 5. The fee is due at the time the order is placed.

A Special Note on Attire:
Dress appropriately for the day and the occasion.
Weather in Columbus can be unpredictable, so please be aware of the forecast and plan to dress comfortably under your academic regalia. Be mindful of your footwear. All graduate processional routes into the stands of Ohio Stadium require the use of stairs and walking distance of up to half a mile. We recommend that you choose comfortable footwear, and discourage shoes with high or narrow heels, tall platforms or wedges.

The Gown
Bachelor: The bachelor gown is black, full cut with long pointed sleeves.
Master: The master gown is black, long or short sleeves, with an arc-shaped panel extended for each sleeve.
Doctor: The Ohio State University Doctor of Philosophy and Doctor of Musical Arts gowns are scarlet with gray velvet panels on the front and three velvet bars on each sleeve. Other doctor gowns are black with velvet panels and bars, the color of which is distinctive of the field of study.

Honors Emblem
The Ohio State University honors emblem is a scarlet and gray tasseled braid worn over the gown. Students eligible for this curricular honor are those graduating summa cum laude, magna cum laude, and cum laude. At the discretion of their college, students graduating with distinction or with honors may also be eligible. Graduates meeting these criteria receive the honors emblem through their college office.

The Hood
Master: Three-and-one-half feet long with a three-inch-wide velvet edging.
Doctor: Four feet in length with a five-inch-wide velvet edging and panel at the sides.

The lining of all hoods, which is folded out, bears the official colors of the institution granting the degree. The color of the velvet indicates the degree being earned and generally reflects the field of study.

Cap and Tassel
Candidates for degrees at The Ohio State University wear the black mortarboard with a tassel. The color is distinctive of the degree being received. Tassel colors are as follows:

Graduate School (PhD/DMA)




College of Arts and Sciences



BA Journalism






BS, BS Design, BS Atmos.Sci., BS Geog.Info.Sci.


Fisher College of Business


College of Dentistry


College of Education and Human Ecology


Light Blue

Human Ecology


College of Engineering


Knowlton School of Architecture


College of Food, Agricultural and Environmental Sciences


School of Environment and Natural Resources


Moritz College of Law


College of Medicine


School of Health and Rehabilitation Sciences


College of Nursing


College of Optometry

Seafoam Green

College of Pharmacy

Olive Green

John Glenn College of Public Affairs

Peacock Blue

College of Public Health


College of Social Work


College of Veterinary Medicine