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The matriculation ceremony at Oxford

Matriculation, in the broadest sense, means to be registered or added to a list, from the Latin matricula - little list. In Scottish heraldry, for instance, a matriculation is a registration of armorial bearings. The most common meaning, however, refers to the formal process of entering a university, or of becoming eligible to enter by acquiring the meeting prerequisites.


By place



Up until the 1960s and 70s "matriculation", often shortened to "matric", was used (as in other Commonwealth countries) to refer to the successful completion of Form 6, the final year of high school. As such it was a prerequisite for entry into tertiary education.


In Bangladesh the shortened term "Matric" refers to the Secondary School Examination (SSC) taken at year 10, this is generally equivalent to an English GCSE.


In Canada, the term is used by some older universities to refer to orientation ("frosh") events,[citation needed] however some universities, including University of King's College, still hold formal Matriculation (usually shortened to "matric") ceremonies. The ceremony at King's is quite similar to the matriculation ceremonies held in universities such as Oxford or Cambridge. In Ontario during the era with grade 13, satisfactory completion of grade 12 was considered junior matriculation. Satisfactory completion of grade 13 was senior matriculation. In Nova Scotia, at the present time, Junior matriculation is grade 11 and senior matriculation is completion of grade 12.

Czech Republic

In the Czech Republic, matriculation is held at the Great Hall (Magna Aula) of the Carolinum in Prague. The ceremony is attended by students commencing their studies at Charles University in Prague. It is intended as a demonstration of the adoption of student's duties and obtainment of student's rights. The ceremony itself involves students taking the Matriculation Oath of the University and symbolically touching the Faculty mace and shaking the Dean's hand.


In Denmark the University of Copenhagen hold a matriculation ceremony each year. The ceremony is held in the Hall of Ceromony in the main building of the University. The ceremony begins with a procesion with the rector and the deans in academic dress and othe reaglia. The cermony continues with the rector listing the different faculties, after which the different student, shouts when their respective fadulty is mentioned. The rector then delivers a speech, after which the rector and the deans leave the ceromony again in procession. Afterwhich a party is held on university grounds, to mark the admission of the new students.


In Ethiopia, matriculation is also given at the end of 10th or 12 grades, and must be taken to proceed to college or university. The test is given in nine subjects.


In India, "matriculation" (sometimes referred to as "matric") is a term commonly used to refer to the final year of high school, which ends at tenth standard (tenth grade) and the qualification received on finishing the tenth standard (tenth grade) of high school and passing the national board exams or the state board exams, commonly called "matriculation exams". so forth, English is the Standard medium of language for matriculations. Most students who pass out of matriculation, or class 10, are 15–16 years old. Upon successfully passing, a student may continue onto junior college. The 11th and 12th standards (grades) are usually referred to as "first year junior college" and "second year junior college". Most students who pass out of class 12 are 17–18 years old. The CBSE and ICSE boards conduct twelfth standard courses nationally, while state boards operate at the state-level.


In Pakistan, Matriculation (usually shortened to "matric") is a term that refers to the final examinations of 9th and 10th grades. It results in the issuance SSC (Secondary School Certificate) or TSC (Technical School Certificate). After the SSC or TSC students proceeded for 11th year of education at College.

South Africa

In South Africa, "matriculation" (usually shortened to "matric") is a term commonly used to refer to the final year of high school and the qualification received on graduating from high school, although strictly speaking it refers to the minimum university entrance requirements.

United States

In the United States, universities and colleges that have a formal matriculation ceremony include: Assumption College, Belmont Abbey College, Boston College [1], Carnegie Mellon University, Rice University, Saint Leo University, Tufts University, Virginia Military Institute, Mount Holyoke College, Dartmouth College, University of Wisconsin–Baraboo/Sauk County, Marietta College[2], Trinity College, Kalamazoo College, Lyon College, Albion College, Kenyon College[3], Mount Union College[4], Hamline University[5], Lyndon State College[6], The University of Saint Mary (Kansas) and Walsh University. At other universities and colleges, "matriculation" can refer to mere enrollment or registration as a student at a university or college by a student intending to earn a degree, an event which involves only paperwork and is often handled by mail or online.[citation needed] A university might make a distinction between "matriculated students," who are actually accumulating credits toward a degree, and a relative few "non-matriculated students" who may be "auditing" courses or taking classes without receiving credits.[citation needed]

Some medical schools highlight matriculation with a white coat ceremony. For example, UAB School of Medicine [7] does so.

Sports commentators often use the word matriculate to describe the process of moving the football down the field. However, this use of the word is unrelated to any other known use of the word.

United Kingdom

In the English universities of Oxford, Cambridge[8], Bristol and Durham, the term is used for the ceremony at which new students are entered into the register (in Latin matricula) of the university, at which point they become members of the university. Oxford requires matriculands to wear academic dress with subfusc during the ceremony. At Cambridge and Durham, policy regarding the wearing of academic dress varies amongst the colleges. Separate matriculation ceremonies are held by some of the colleges in Durham.

At the ancient universities of Scotland, Matriculation involves signing the Sponsio Academica, a pledge to abide by university rules and to support the institution.

At British universities where there is no formal ceremony, the terms "matriculation", "enrolment" and "registration" are often used interchangeably by different institutions to describe the administrative process of becoming a member of the university.

At Oxford and Cambridge matriculation was formerly associated with entrance examinations taken before or shortly after matriculation, known as Responsions at Oxford and the Previous Examination at Cambridge, both abolished in 1960. University-wide entrance examinations were subsequently re-introduced at both universities, but abolished in 1995. More limited subject-based tests have since been introduced.


Along with the act of becoming a member of a college or hall of the Universities of Oxford or Cambridge or of becoming a member of Trinity College, Dublin, becoming a member of the University is not termed matriculation but incorporation when the incorporand (the person to be incorporated) in question has already matriculated under the auspices of one of these three institutions (unless he is joining a college or hall of one of these three institutions into which he has been matriculated).


  1. ^
  2. ^, URL retrieved 2007-August-26.
  3. ^, URL retrieved 2007-May-19.
  4. ^, URL retrieved 2008-April-11
  5. ^
  6. ^
  7. ^
  8. ^ Newton,Sir Isaac in Venn, J. & J. A., Alumni Cantabrigienses, Cambridge University Press, 10 vols, 1922–1958. As an example of the continual use of the term matriculation in the ACAD database for any student entering any of the Colleges at Cambridge


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