Academic dress in the University of Hertfordshire
In accordance with tradition, our academic dress consists of a gown, a cap, and a hood. The black gown and square cap familiar to all readers of the Beano had evolved into pretty much their present form in England by the end of the Reformation. The hood (which is now the distinctive mark of a university-level qualification) is medieval in origin, and was originally functional. Modern academic hoods, however, are intended to indicate the wearer’s degree and parent institution, rather than to keep their ears warm. Although the cap and gown can (in theory) be worn upon any occasion, the wearing of hoods is usually reserved for solemn or festive occasions such as awards ceremonies. There are many different variations of academic dress, depending on the academic qualification held by the wearer. In the next few pages we shall first describe the different degrees and diplomas awarded by the University of Hertfordshire for which academic dress is prescribed, and then look in more detail at the gown, cap, and hood associated with each award. We shall then go on to describe the distinctive costume that the University prescribes for its Senior Officers.