Doctoral Gear 101

Published on
May 14, 2021 at 11:50:14 AM PDT May 14, 2021 at 11:50:14 AM PDTth, May 14, 2021 at 11:50:14 AM PDT

Doctoral Gear 101 


Graduation is right around the corner! Congratulations on your achievement!

We are here to help with your Doctoral cap and gown ordering.


Step 1: Order early!! 

Important things to keep in mind:

Custom cap and gown purchase orders are made to order and NON-refundable. It will take approximately 6-8 weeks to produce and ship your custom order.

Also note, October 3, 2022 is the Doctoral Purchase deadline and October 26, 2022 is the Doctoral Rental deadline - you must order by then to avoid rush fees!


Step 2: Choose your gown

Most students and faculty are strongly encouraged to wear the UT Official Doctoral Gown to Commencement. The University's Official custom cap and gown is the official outfit for all doctoral degree candidates.

Some schools may require students to wear the UT Official and others may allow students or faculty to wear the traditional black regalia - double check with an advisor before you decide to purchase the Traditional cap and gown.

Here’s a side by side comparison of the two choices:







UT's Official Custom Doctoral Cap and Gown

This is the official cap and gown for all doctoral degrees.

The UT Official gown is a custom Madison-style robe made of a rich Dalton Crepe fabric.

The ensemble features:

  • A custom gown accented with gold embroidered UT towers on the front lapel.
  • Two pins embedded in the towers.
  • A matching velvet hood. Unlike the traditional faculty gown, the hood will be the same style regardless of the doctoral degree.
  • Available for rental from the Co-op
  • A matching 6-corner velvet tam with a gold, metallic tassel.

The UT Official cap and gown cannot be customized or modified in any way. You may purchase the items all together or individually.

Traditional Cap and Gown - Available for Rental

This can be worn by graduates from any university.

Customization includes:

  • Black doctoral gown
  • Hood velvet in the color of your degree
  • Satin lining of the hood in the colors of your alma mater.
  • Choice between velvet tam or flat mortarboard.
  • Choice of velvet color, number of corners, and style of gold tassel on tam
  • Available for rental from the Co-op
  • Please call our partners at Oak Hall for custom purchase options and to buy a custom gown: 800-223-0429 (ask for the custom department)

Step 3: Choose whether you would like to rent or buy


Renting is always an option, but if you are pursuing a field in academia or are faculty we recommend you purchase. You will most likely be attending many graduations in the future, and the custom gowns are designed to last a lifetime, so it’s a one-time investment and will save you from going through a rental process each semester.



UT Official

You cannot rent the tam or pin set; you must buy them separately. Total is ~$250.

Total comes out to ~$1,026


The rental traditional gown will be a simplified outfit; a plain black robe with black velvet and bars. No customizations are available on a rental outfit. Rental pricing ranges from $84.99 to $112.99

When you purchase the traditional set, there are a variety of options and customizations, so pricing can range anywhere from $604 to $1,150.



For Traditional Doctoral call 800-223-0429

Step 4: Take your measurements

We suggest getting a friend to help you with these measurements and following along with our step by step guide.



Please note that if you are purchasing a custom cap and gown, we will need specific measurements, listed below. However, if you are simply renting, we will only need your height and head measurement.


Head size (inches):

This measurement is to ensure your hat or tam fits well. This is the most difficult and the most important measurement! Ensure that you are measuring as accurately as possible.

Measure around the widest part of your head, roughly one inch above the brow.

Ensure that the measuring tape is parallel to the ground.

Typical head measurements fall between 21 and 24 inches.


Chest Measurement (inches):

Measure around the widest part of your chest. Leave enough room for a hand or two to fit.

Shirt Sleeve Length (inches):

Place the tape measure at the back (nape) of your neck and pull the tape measure to your shoulder, then down to your elbow, then wrist. The tape measure should end near the bone on your wrist, where you would want the sleeve to fall. Typical measurement is between 29-35 inches.


Height (Feet/Inches):

This should be your height without shoes.


Other things to note for measuring:

When measuring, keep the tape parallel to the ground - no angled measuring.

The shortest shirt sleeve length accepted is 29”. This is the average length of someone between the heights of 5’0” to 5’3”.

Have a friend help you!

You’re now ready to order your Doctoral Cap and Gown. 

We're here to help! Contact our graduation department by calling 800-255-1896 or emailing


Good luck and hook ‘em!