Cap and Gown Orders FAQ

Must I obtain academic regalia (cap and gown) to participate in commencement?

Proper academic regalia is required for those graduates who register to participate in any commencement ceremonies. All graduates are responsible for purchasing or renting their own academic regalia from the University Bookstore. For questions regarding the rental or purchase of regalia, please call the bookstore at 216.368.2650 or 800.825.2650.

Can I add accessories to my regalia?

Graduates are permitted to wear cords, stoles, medals or pins that recognize academic achievement. Symbols of social or fraternal organizations or of personal interest should not be worn.

What else should I know about appropriate attire for commencement?

Graduates should plan on dressing comfortably without being overly casual or informal. Commencement day involves a great deal of walking. Comfortable shoes are strongly recommended.

How does my regalia (cap and gown) arrive from the manufacturer?

Each individual cap and gown order arrives pre-sorted with a copy of the order attached to it. Each order contains the cap and gown which correspond with the sizes indicated on the graduate's form, plus their tassel and, in the case of graduate and professional students, the appropriate academic hood.

What do the colors on the hood signify?

The colors on the inside of the hood (blue and gray) indicate that the graduate wearing the hood earned his or her degree from Case Western Reserve University. The colored velvet on the outside of the hood indicates in what discipline the degree was earned.

What if my cap and gown do not fit?

Although this is unlikely since your order is customized, in the event that your regalia doesn't fit, return to the University Bookstore to exchange it. Your gown should have a length that falls around the midpoint of your lower leg between your knee and your ankle, and your cap should fit well but not be excessively loose or tight.

Is my regalia (cap and gown) going to be ready to wear, right out of the package?

There is no need to have your cap and gown dry-cleaned or hand-washed; all regalia is clean upon arrival. However, it is strongly recommended that your gown be ironed or steamed before the ceremony.

What if I still have questions?

Please contact the Commencement Office, 216.368.2229. or