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Booking process Graduation in 2021

You will be aware that, due to the Covid-19 pandemic, like many other institutions, we had to cancel our plans for Graduation Ceremonies in 2020 and early 2021. Earlier this year, we published our promise to guarantee all graduating students an opportunity to attend a physical graduation ceremony to celebrate their achievements at an unspecified future point which we would explore once Government restrictions were eased and guidance on large public gatherings was clear.

During the late spring and summer, ARU’s Graduation Team has been working on plans to cater for both the Class of 2020 (who had no ceremonies last year) and the Class of 2021. Working together with the external venues we use for the ceremonies (we do not hold the actual graduation ceremonies on our campuses), we have managed to secure a three week window for ceremonies from 4th October 2021in Cambridge and Chelmsford. Sadly, there is no other availability with our external venues to hold ceremonies at any other point in 2021 (ie: November and December 2021).

The volume of students expected to attend a ceremony is nearly twice as large as our normal population (ie: the Classes of both 2020 and 2021) and, in order to use the three weeks we have secured in a way which provides the best celebratory experience for our students and their guests, we have had to make some necessary decisions about who qualifies for eligibility for this year’s ceremonies and, therefore, who will instead be deferred to ceremonies held in July 2022.

If your award has been confirmed by 31st July 2021:

  • All students from the Class of 2020 who wish to attend a physical graduation ceremony in October 2021 will be able to do so.
  • All students from the Class of 2021 who had their awards confirmed by 31st July 2021 are eligible to attend the physical graduation ceremonies in October 2021 and can now book their place at the appropriate ceremony.


If your award has not yet been confirmed but will be confirmed in September 2021 or later in 2021:

  • Students who are undertaking (re)assessment from Trimester 1 and/or Trimester 2 modules during the Summer Vacation will have their results published on 24th September 2021.
  • Students who are studying modules during Trimester 3, will also have their results published on 24th September 2021.
  • This means that all students who will have their awards confirmed in September 2021 or later in 2021 will not be eligible to attend the October 2021 ceremonies but will, instead, be invited to attend graduation ceremonies in July 2022. These ceremonies will be held in the period 11-15 July 2022 (Cambridge) and 18-22 July 2022 (Chelmsford). Dates for Peterborough in July 2022 will be confirmed in due course.