Convocation

Frequently Asked Questions

FAQs

  1. Can I get my diploma now?
  2. Can you tell me if I am eligible to graduate?
  3. How can I apply to graduate?
  4. What time is my graduation? What day is it on?
  5. If I attend my Convocation ceremony, will I get my diploma there or will it be mailed to me?
  6. Do I get my transcript with my diploma?
  7. I am a graduate with a disability or special needs and will be attending my ceremony. Who should I call to make special arrangements if necessary?
  8. If I have a guest with special needs, whom do I contact?
  9. Do my guests need tickets for Convocation? Even small children?
  10. Are the ceremonies videotaped or photographed?
  11. If I am not attending Convocation, how do I receive my diploma?
  12. Can I attend any ceremony?
  13. How long is the ceremony?
  14. Can I park close by?
  15. When will my Convocation package be mailed?
  16. How do I cancel my Convocation?
  17. How do I obtain extra tickets to my Convocation?
  18. How do I rent regalia?
  19. What happens if I don't order my tickets right away? Will you run out?
  20. When I tried to view the PDF of my tickets, one of the following problems occurred:
    a. I was kicked out of the website.
    b. A blank screen appeared.
  21. I lost/I threw out/My dog ate the tickets I already printed--what do I do?
  22. Why can't I see my extra tickets in the file with my original order?
  23. My family is very excited that I'm graduating, can I let my child(ren) sit with me during the ceremony and cross the stage with me?
  24. Do I have to wear a gown to cross the stage?
  25. Is there a lost and found for items lost during Convocation?

Q1. Can I get my diploma now?

Degrees, Diplomas and certificates normally will not be awarded in advance of Convocation ceremonies. You must do one of the following: (1) Attend your Convocation ceremony; (2) Pick your diploma up in person AFTER your Convocation date; or (3) Request to have it mailed to you. For more information, please refer to “If I attend my Convocation ceremony, will I get my diploma or will it be mailed to me?

Early Release: a degree, diploma or certificate may be released early at the discretion of the Office of the Registrar if the student demonstrates that the document is required by an employer or needed for a work visa. Please visit the Office of the Registrar website for further information.

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Q2. Can you tell me if I am eligible to graduate?

Graduation requirements differ depending on what degree, diploma or certificate you are completing.

Please see the Academic Calendar for graduation requirements.

Specific details about required courses should be obtained from your Faculty.

Transfer students should contact their Faculty to ensure that they will meet graduation requirements.

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Q3. How can I apply to graduate?

You must apply to graduate on the Student Center website: student.uwo.ca.

Once you login, from the “Menu” select “Self Service” then “Graduation” – “Apply for Graduation” – Please follow the on screen instructions.

Applications to graduate at Spring Convocation open in early February. You should only apply to graduate at the Spring ceremony if you will have completed your graduation requirements by the end of April of that academic year. For deadlines to apply for Spring Convocation please refer to the “Student Checklist” on this website.

Applications to graduate at Autumn Convocation open in early July. You should only apply to graduate at the Autumn Convocation if you will have completed your graduation requirements by the end of August of that academic year. For deadlines to apply for Autumn Convocation please refer to the “Student Checklist” on this website.

Applications to graduate at the February In Absentia Convocation open in November. You should only apply to graduate at the In Absentia Convocation if you will have completed your graduation requirements by the end of December of that academic year and will require your diploma prior to the Spring Convocation date. For deadlines to apply for In Absentia Convocation please refer to the “Student Checklist” on this website.

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Q4. What time is my graduation? What day is it on?

You will be able to check your Convocation date and time when you log on to get your online Convocation tickets. Alternatively, you can access the Order of Convocation by visiting the “Ceremony Dates” page.

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Q5. If I attend my Convocation ceremony, will I get my diploma there or will it be mailed to me?

If you attend your Convocation ceremony you will receive your diploma there.

If you do not attend your Convocation ceremony, your diploma can be picked up in person from Student Central, Room 1120, Western Student Services Building 3 business days subsequent to the appropriate ceremony. Diplomas are retained in the Office of the Registrar for two years after Convocation. Upon the expiration of this date, your Diploma will be destroyed and can be replaced for a fee of $45.00.

If you cannot pick up your diploma in person:
A) You may authorize, by signed letter, another person to do so. The authorized person must present suitable photo identification, visit the Office of the Registrar website for more information.
B) You can request your diploma to be mailed to you online here.

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Q6. Do I get my transcript with my diploma?

No, you do not get a copy of your transcript with your diploma. If you would like to obtain a copy of your transcript you can order one through the Office of the Registrar:

Order your transcript online through your Student Center. Alternatively, you may go to Room 1120, Western Student Services Building, and order your transcript on the spot.

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Q7. I am a graduate with a disability or special needs and will be attending my ceremony. Who should I call to make special arrangements if necessary?

Candidates with disabilities needing assistance or requiring special arrangements for marshalling across the stage are asked to write to the Marshal of Convocation one week or more before your ceremony. Mail can be sent to the Marshal at:

Marshal of Convocation
c/o Convocation Board of Senate
Room 4101
Stevenson Hall
Or email nmartine@uwo.ca, with the subject: Graduation Accessibility

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Q8. If I have a guest with special needs, whom do I contact?

If you have a guest with special needs, for example someone in a wheelchair, who will require additional arrangements at the ceremony, you must contact the Convocation Secretary at 519-661-2055. Please contact the Convocation Secretary to make arrangements up to one week before your ceremony. Regular tickets must be exchanged for reserved tickets. Extra reserved tickets will not be issued.

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Q9. Do my guests need tickets for Convocation? Even small children?

Tickets are not required for children who will be sitting on someone’s lap or be held. Small children who will require their own seat will require a ticket for the Convocation ceremony.

Spring Convocation
Online tickets will be available in late-May on this site. The number of guest tickets allotted to each student will be determined prior to the first day to order online tickets. Where available, a limited number of additional guest tickets will be provided to the Deans' offices for distribution. Once online tickets are available, students planning to attend the ceremony must print off their tickets (please print one ticket per page), and give them to their guests to bring on the day of Convocation in order to gain admittance to the auditorium, space permitting.

Morning Ceremonies
The doors of Alumni Hall will be opened at 8:45am for the 10:00am ceremony. Tickets will be honored until 9:30am. After 9:30am any remaining seats will be available to those without tickets. Ushers will not permit seats to be held for late arriving guests.

Afternoon Ceremonies
The doors of Alumni Hall will be opened at 1:45pm for the 3:00pm ceremony. Tickets will be honored until 2:30pm at which time any remaining seats will be available to those without tickets. Ushers will not permit seats to be held for late arriving guests.

After the Academic Procession has entered the auditorium, the doors will be closed and latecomers will be admitted only during appropriate pauses in the ceremony.

Autumn Convocation
We anticipate that students will receive 4 guest tickets for their graduation ceremony. Online tickets will be available in mid-October on this site. Where possible, a limited number of additional guest tickets may be available through Student Services. Once online tickets are available, students planning to attend the ceremony must print off their tickets (please print one ticket per page), and give them to their guests to bring on the day of Convocation in order to gain admittance to the auditorium, space permitting.

Morning Ceremonies
The doors of Alumni Hall will be opened at 8:45am for the 10:00am ceremony. Tickets will be honored until 9:30am. After 9:30am any remaining seats will be available to those without tickets. Ushers will not permit seats to be held for late arriving guests.

Afternoon Ceremonies
The doors of Alumni Hall will be opened at 1:45pm for the 3:00pm ceremony. Tickets will be honored until 2:30pm at which time any remaining seats will be available to those without tickets. Ushers will not permit seats to be held for late arriving guests.

After the Academic Procession has entered the auditorium, the doors will be closed and latecomers will be admitted only during appropriate pauses in the ceremony.

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Q10. Are the ceremonies videotaped or photographed?

At this time the ceremonies are recorded, and a live webcast of each ceremony is available online. As well, DVD copies of each Western Convocation ceremony after 2008 are available for purchase. View the Photography/DVD page for more information.

Attending graduates will have their portraits taken at Convocation, and Western will provide each a 5x7 photograph free of charge after the ceremony. Students must pre-register prior to Convocation online here where they can select their ceremony date and time.

Students who pre-register will receive an email with a Customer Number to use for logging in. If you have not registered but wish to after Convocation is over, email customer service at GradImages in order to receive a secure Customer Number to access your photos. Visit www.gradimages.com, click on the 'Customer Service' tab, complete the information and click send.

To get the free photo, students should receive an email 3-6 weeks following Convocation containing a promotional code to be entered at the time of checkout. This code will be applied to the order but does not include a small shipping and handling fee. No additional photo purchase is required to receive the free 5x7.

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Q11. If I am not attending Convocation, how do I receive my diploma?

If you did not attend Convocation, you can pick up your diploma from Student Central, Room 1120, Western Student Services Building 3 business days subsequent to your ceremony. Diplomas collected in person are released for no charge.

If you cannot pick up your diploma in person, see the 'Your Diploma' section.

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Q12. Can I attend any ceremony?

No. The Order of Convocation dictates the date and time of your graduation ceremony. If you would like to attend your graduation you must attend the ceremony at the date and time specified.

You may attend other ceremonies as a guest of another graduate provided that they are able to provide you with a ticket that will permit you entrance into their ceremony.

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Q13. How long is the ceremony?

The 10:00am ceremony generally does not run past 12:00pm, and the 3:00pm ceremony generally does not run past 5:00pm.

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Q14. Can I park close by?

Guests should park at the South Valley Parking Lot and follow the path up the stairs to Alumni Hall (see map here). Parking will be free of charge on a first-come first-served basis. Shuttle service will be provided between Alumni Hall and the South Valley Parking Lot at no charge. Accessible parking is available in the Alumni Hall parking lot.

Note: Shuttle drivers have been instructed not to install car seats and request that the parents install the seats themselves. Shuttle drivers have also been instructed to ensure all children are placed in individual seats with seat belts and not be allowed to sit on parents’ laps while vehicles are traveling throughout the campus.

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Q15. When will my Convocation package be mailed?

There are no Convocation packages. Potential graduates for June (and February In-Absentia graduates) will be mailed a Convocation postcard in April. Potential graduates for October will be mailed a Convocation postcard in September. As well, potential graduates will be sent information by email to their Western email address, and can also check this website for more details. Please ensure your address is correct on the system when you apply to graduate.

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Q16. How do I cancel my Convocation?

Note: Inability to attend your Convocation ceremony is not a valid reason to cancel your graduation application. If you have applied to graduate but will not be able to attend your Convocation ceremony, you may participate in a future ceremony. (e.g. those who cannot attend in June may wish to be a part of the Autumn Convocation). If you wish to participate in a future ceremony, please call 519-661-2100 and ask to be a ‘walk-on’. Please note that the deadline to request to be a 'walk-on' is June 1st for the Spring Convocation and October 15th for the Fall Convocation.

If you have already applied to graduate and wish to cancel your application, please go to Room 1120, Western Student Services Building, and fill out a Graduation Cancellation form. The deadline to cancel your graduation application for the Spring Convocation is May 1st.  The deadline to cancel your graduation application for the Autumn Convocation is October 1st.

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Q17. How do I obtain extra tickets to my Convocation?

If extra tickets become available for the Spring ceremonies, they will be released to the Dean's Offices*. Students should check with their Faculty or School to see if extra tickets are available and how to request them. For the Faculty of Science, students should check with their Department. Extra tickets, if available, are on a first-come, first-served basis.

*Students in the School of Graduate and Postdoctoral Studies can request extra tickets through the Student Central Helpline by calling 519-661-2100.

If extra tickets become available for the Autumn ceremonies, you can request them through the Student Central Helpline, 519-661-2100.

Tickets are NOT transferable. Your guests may only use the tickets assigned to you. Your guests may not use tickets from another student.

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Q18. How do I rent regalia?

Regalia rental preorder dates will be posted on this website on the Home page and the Academic Regalia page. Preorders can be made at http://buildagrad.ca/Western during posted times. If you do not order regalia by the preorder deadline, you can still rent regalia the day of your ceremony for an extra charge. For further details, please contact the Book Store at Western.

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Q19. What happens if I don't order my tickets right away? Will you run out?

No, each student is guaranteed a set number of tickets and can order them up until and including the day of their ceremony. Your tickets are yours and will not be given to any other students. That said, in order to properly evaluate order numbers against attendance numbers, we ask that you only order the amount of tickets you will actually need. For example, if you have 4 tickets available to order, and have 2 guests attending, please only order 2 tickets. If you decide to invite more guests after your initial order, you will still have 2 additional tickets available to order and can order them at any time.

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Q20. When I tried to view the PDF of my tickets, one of the following problems occurred:

a. I was kicked out of the website.

Log back in to the ticket website. Where you first clicked the “Order Tickets” button should now have a “View Tickets” option beside it where you should be able to see the PDF file containing however many tickets you originally ordered.

b. A blank screen appeared.

Try logging in to the ticket website and viewing your tickets from a different browser (i.e. if you are using Safari, try with Firefox or Internet Explorer). If you continue to have issues viewing the file, try logging in from a different computer.

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Q21. I lost/I threw out/My dog ate the tickets I already printed--what do I do?

You can reprint your tickets at any time by selecting the “View Tickets” option once you are logged in to the ticket website. Note that the barcode will be the same as the tickets that you already printed previously and may only be scanned for entry once at the door.

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Q22. Why can't I see my extra tickets in the file with my original order?

Your extra tickets are only added to the PDF file after you have ordered them. Once your request for extra tickets is granted, you must log in to the ticket website and select the “Order Tickets” option, where your extra tickets will be available to select. For example, if you have already ordered 4 tickets but have been granted 1 extra ticket, you will see a drop down menu that will allow you to select 1 more ticket. Once you have placed the extra ticket order, you will be able to see the ticket at the bottom of the PDF file containing your original tickets.

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Q23. My family is very excited that I'm graduating, can I let my child(ren) sit with me during the ceremony and cross the stage with me?

Western encourages all students to celebrate their Convocation day with friends and family however, only those individuals eligible to graduate are permitted to cross the stage. Equally, we ask that your family remain in the seating reserved for guests.

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Q24. Do I have to wear a gown to cross the stage?

Those graduating must wear an academic gown (black for undergraduate and master’s degrees; purple for doctoral graduates). Exceptions to this are Indigenous students who may opt to wear traditional regalia, active military personnel who may opt to wear their dress uniform and clergy/members of religious orders who may opt to wear their religious apparel. All graduates will have the appropriate degree hood placed on their shoulders while on stage as a symbol of completion of their degree. Hoods are not required for candidates from diploma and certificate programs, but it is permissible for them to wear hoods from previously earned degrees.

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Q25. Is there a lost and found for items lost during Convocation?

Any items found in Alumni Hall or around campus will be taken to Campus Police, located at the back of Lawson Hall. Find it on a map here.

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