The Graduation Ceremony

The ceremony is an important day in the University year and a proud day in the life of those who are graduating.

The graduation is the culmination of years of study and is the occasion on which the University formally awards certificates and diplomas and confers degrees upon those students who have completed their studies at the University over the past year.

The ceremony is an exciting blend of old and new: a ceremony steeped in tradition in which many of the customs and much of the regalia dates from many hundreds of years and the earliest universities, while the graduates represent the latest in ideas, technologies and expression.


Academic dress is part of the rich heritage of universities. The beginning of the ceremony sees the staff of the University show their pride and support for the new graduates by wearing academic dress and official robes in the Academic Procession. When presented with their academic parchments, the graduates also wear the academic dress appropriate to their award.

The Chancellor and staff of the University proceed onto the stage in an official Academic Procession, which is headed by the junior academic and general staff of the University followed by the senior staff of the University and completed by the Mace Bearer and Chancellor.

The University Mace represents much of the history and regalia associated with universities and their official ceremonies.

The Mace

The silver ceremonial mace was presented to the Flinders University of South Australia by The University of Adelaide in April 1969 in recognition of the development of the University.

In medieval times, a mace was a heavy, often spiked, club used as a weapon in battle and at jousting matches. In the sixteenth century the mace came to be borne ceremonially as a symbol of protection of the monarch, and later as a general ceremonial staff of office. Oxford University began using a mace for ceremonial occasions in the late sixteenth century and Cambridge University adopted a mace in 1626.

The Flinders mace was designed by Mr Gerald Benney of London, and is based on a heraldic double F for Flinders. The head of the mace is textured on its outside surfaces and polished on the spindle parts.

The crest of Flinders University is engraved on the head; at the lower end of the shaft, there is a smaller replica of the crest of The University of Adelaide and an inscription - Given to The Flinders University of South Australia by The University of Adelaide 1969.