Doctoral Degree Conferment Ceremony

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Hat from a Doctoral Degree Conferment Ceremony

A Doctoral Degree Conferment Ceremony is the academic ceremony that honors those who have been awarded a doctorate. At Chalmers, a conferment ceremony is held every year, usually on a Saturday in May.

Chalmers has had the right to award doctoral degrees since 1940. Since then, 223 honorary doctors, 3,501 PhDs (teknologie), 382 PhDs (filosofie), 3 PhDs (ekonomie) and 1 PhD (medicine) have been conferred (as of June 2023). 

Next Doctoral Degree Conferment Ceremony

The next conferment ceremony will take place on 1 June 2024.

The event has two parts, the conferment ceremony and a banquet. The ceremony will take place in Gothenburg Concert Hall at Götaplatsen. The banquet will be held in the Student Union Building on Chalmers’ Johanneberg campus.

Invitation and registration

In January of the year after a doctoral student has received the doctoral degree, an invitation to the conferment ceremony is sent by email to the address registered in Ladok. Instructions for registering for the ceremony are included in the invitation. If you want to update your address, do so in Ladok.


The ceremony is free of charge. The banquet is free of charge for the doctoral student (the person on whom the degree will be conferred) and one guest. Two additional guests may also attend and pay a cost price of SEK 795 per person. Payment information will be sent when registration has been closed.


Those attending the conferment ceremony and banquet the dress code is formal attire. This means black tails with a white vest and a white bow tie or a full long dress in any color.

For guests attending the ceremony only, a dark suit is required. 

Doctor's collar

There are over 40 different designs representing different universities, faculties and academies. The collar is embroidered entirely by hand, with black silk on black velvet.

The collar is mounted on the black tailcoat or on a black jacket/cape to suit being worn together with a full long dress.

Where to order it and other practical information can be found in the FAQsection.


Conferment ceremonies are photographed by a specially commissioned photographer. A selection of photos will be displayed on the Chalmers website after the ceremony. Guests may also take photos during the ceremony, but we ask all guests to remain seated throughout the ceremony.

Degrees are conferred 

In Sweden, doctoral degrees are awarded in titles according to faculty affiliation. There are 13 different doctoral titles, according to the subject area. 

Jubilee doctors

Fifty years after a doctor has been awarded a doctoral degree, they become a jubilee doctor at the university at which they were awarded the doctoral degree. These doctors attend the university’s regular doctoral degree ceremony, at which they are made a jubilee doctor and receive a diploma.  

Honorary doctors are awarded their title

Honorary doctors are also honored at the doctoral degree ceremony and receive all three marks of distinction: a hat, a diploma and a ring. Honorary doctorates, doctor honoris causa, are awarded to scientists, mainly from other countries, with whom Swedish university and higher education researchers have made contact in their work, and to other people who have not attained a doctorate through formal achievements but who the university wishes to associate with the research community. Practice in terms of what achievements to honor may vary between higher education institutions.

An honorary doctor of science at Chalmers University of Technology is awarded in recognition of a highly distinguished and profound professional achievement related to Chalmers’ subject areas of expertise. There should also be an existing network of contacts between a person appointed honorary doctor of science and Chalmers. The Faculty Senate appoints honorary doctors of science at Chalmers.

Finding honorary doctors at Chalmers and other Swedish universities

The Swedish Convention for Academic Ceremonies has created a database of all honorary doctors awarded their doctorates at Swedish universities since 1963.

If you want to know which doctorates have been awarded at Chalmers, you can also obtain this information from the records manager at Chalmers:

Database of honorary doctorates

Search for information about doctorates that have been awarded at Chalmers from 1963 onwards.

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Three marks of distinction (insignia)

During the formal Doctoral Degree Conferment Ceremony, the new doctors receive marks of distinction as proof of their academic title.

The diploma

Everyone who attends a conferment ceremony may receive a doctoral diploma from Chalmers. The diploma used to be the written proof of the doctoral degree. Today the diploma has no formal significance. It is not a degree certificate and therefore does not replace the doctoral degree certificate that you receive from the Office of Degrees.

The hat

It is not compulsory to wear a doctoral hat to attend the conferment ceremony. If you want a doctoral hat, you have to buy it yourself. Where to order it and other practical information can be found in the FAQ section. The doctoral hat symbolises freedom and power.

The ring

As a doctor, you are entitled to wear the special doctoral ring. It is not compulsory to have a ring to attend a doctoral degree ceremony. If you want a ring, you have to buy it yourself. The doctoral ring has a wreath of oak leaves broken by a ring charged with a five-pointed star. It symbolises the North Star (Pole Star), which is the symbol of learning. The ring itself symbolises fidelity. Where to order it and other practical information can be found in the FAQsection.

Promovendi – promoti – promotor/promotrix

The people who are being awarded a doctoral degree are called promovendi. The word is Latin and its conjugation determines its meaning.

Before the Doctoral Degree Conferment Ceremony

promovendi – several men and women

promovendus – a man

promovenda – a woman

After the Doctoral Degree Conferment Ceremony

promoti – several men and women

promotus - a man

promota - a woman

The person who conducts the ceremony is called the promotor if it is a man, or the promotrix if it is a woman.

FAQ's about the Doctoral Degree Conferment Ceremony

Do you have any further questions?

For questions please contact: