Class of 2021 FAQ's

Please see below some key questions and answers regarding the Class of 2021 Virtual Celebration and the Photography Studios.

Virtual Celebration

Q: What is the Class of 2021 Virtual Celebration?  

A: The virtual celebration will provide you with an opportunity to come together with your peers and lecturers to recognise and celebrate your academic achievements. The virtual celebration is open to all students from the class of 2021 and is not dependent on awards being confirmed by the time of the celebration. We welcome all students from the class to attend. The Class of 2021 Virtual Celebration will be hosted on the Queen Mary University of London website and a virtual platform. 

Q: When is the Virtual Celebration taking place? 

A: The Class of 2021 Virtual Celebration will take place between Monday 26th July and Friday 30th July 2021. 

Q: How do I book for the Class of 2021 Virtual Celebration?  

A: Bookings have now closed.

Q: When is the booking deadline? 

A: Bookings have now closed.

Q: How do I access the virtual celebration? 

A: First, please register your place for the Class of 2021 Virtual Celebration.  Please then sign up to Zoom with the email address you used to register for the Class of 2021 Virtual Celebration, this will ensure you can access the right celebration room for your cohort. You must do this in advance. Don't worry setting up your zoom account is free.

Full details, including a private link enabling you to access the Class of 2021 Virtual Celebration, will be emailed to those who register to attend closer to the date of the celebration. 

Q: How do my friends and family take part in this celebration?   

A: Friends and family are welcome to watch the virtual celebration and will need to access the experience via the same device you are using.

Q: What can I do during the virtual celebration?  

A: All graduands will be invited to attend a live event hosted by their school on the virtual platform. The experience will include messages of congratulations from the Principal, the President of the Students Union, Heads of School and lecturers. During the live event you will also be able to connect with your class mates and lecturers. The live event will be accessible via a private link sent to graduands prior to Monday 26th July 2021.

The Class of 2021 Virtual Celebration webpage will house the live event schedule, messages of congratulations from special guests, details regarding Queen Mary’s Alumni and Careers and Enterprise networks and resources, and how to purchase Class of 2021 merchandise. 

Q: Will I need to download a special app to access the Class of 2021 Virtual Celebration live event? 

A: Please sign up to Zoom with the email address that you used to regsiter for the Class of 2021 Virtual Celebration, this will ensure you can access the right celebration room for your cohort. You must do this in advance. Don't worry setting up your zoom account is free.

Q: Does attending this celebration mean that I won’t be able to attend a physical ceremony?   

A: The virtual celebration does not act as a replacement to the physical ceremony.  

Q: When are physical ceremonies happening?  

A: We are unable to release these at present due to the uncertainty surrounding the Covid-19 pandemic. The health, welfare and safety of students, staff and visitors is our top priority and we are continuing to follow all government advice. Any students expecting to graduate this year will get an award. 

Q: Do I need to defer my place at graduation as my physical ceremony has been postponed?  

A: No. Any final year students who were expected to attend the summer 2021 ceremonies do not need to defer their attendance. Your student record details, along with the emails you use to register for the class of 2021 celebration, will be used to contact you when your ceremony is rescheduled.  You not need to alert us of your intention to attend your rescheduled ceremony at this point. 

Q: When will I receive my degree certificate?    

A: If you have any questions about transcripts or certificates, please contact the Student Enquiry Centre

Q: I’m an international student. What happens if I can’t return to the UK for a physical ceremony at a later date?

A: We understand the concerns of our international students who may face difficulties in attending rescheduled graduation ceremonies. The needs of international students were considered when we made the difficult decision to reschedule our graduation ceremonies, but our primary concern is the wellbeing and safety of our students and staff. While we are working closely with the Students Union to reschedule these ceremonies, we do anticipate that we will need to reschedule the graduation ceremonies planned for December to a time after the expiry of current Tier 4 visas. We appreciate the practical difficulties and disruption that this will cause, and we are working with our Advice and Counselling service to ensure that students whose Tier 4 visas have expired by the time of their graduation ceremony receive as much advice and guidance as possible. We plan to share information with students in due course on how we can best support in person attendance at graduation ceremonies next year. More information from the advice and counselling service can be found here.

Q: How do I join the Alumni Network?  

A: As part of the Alumni network you will receive regular communications, including invitations to a number of events, plus help with organising your own reunions. To see how you can get involved please visit, to register for the network please visit 

Q: How do I purchase branded merchandise?  

A: You will be able to purchase branded hoodies, t-shirts and certificate frames and we are also able to offer graduands the option to purchase a gown and a special Class of 2021 stole. For more information about merchandise for sale and how to purchase these items please visit Class of 2021 Merchandise.

Q: Can I hire a gown for my virtual celebration?

A: Yes you can. You can do this through Your Graduation when you book your place. Gown hire for the virtual celebrations are optional.

Q: If I hire a gown for the virtual celebration, how long can I keep it for?

A: Your gown will be posted out in advance of your virtual celebration and you will be able to use it for the week of the virtual celebrations. Your gown will be sent with a pre-paid returns label (UK addresses only) and instructions on how to return your gown. You can also select the extended gown hire option to keep it for longer or the purchase option to keep it.

Q: Can I hire a gown to an international address?

A: We only offer purchases options for gowns internationally. If you would like to purchase a gown to be sent to an international address then you can do this through the YourGraduation portal when booking to attend your virtual celebration. If you do not want to attend the virtual event but would still like to purchase a gown you can do this via

Q: Can I hire a gown without attending the virtual celebration?

A: Of course. If you would like to order a gown without attending the virtual celebration then visit

Q: Will I be able to purchase my cap and gown and/or 2021 sash at a physical graduation?

A: Purchasing cap and gowns and the sashes are new options introduced by our supplier this year. We have been informed that there are also plans for these items to be available for purchase at physical ceremonies when they are re-instated. However, as we cannot confirm re-scheduled dates for physical ceremonies due to the uncertainty caused by the pandemic, we would recommend purchasing any merchandise items you wish during the virtual celebration period and avoid any disappointment.

Q: I am an MBBS/BDS student attending Rites of Passage, and I have a question about Rites of Passage?

A: Please visit the Rites of Passage website to find out all of the information you need about Rites of Passage.

Photography Studios

General Information  

Q: When are photography studios taking place? 

A: Photography studios will be taking place on Mile End Campus on Tuesday 27 and Wednesday 28 July between 10am and 5pm.   

Q: Does attending this mean I won’t be able to attend a physical ceremony?   

A: These photography studios do not act as a replacement to the physical ceremony.   


Q: How do I book to attend a photography session? 

A: Photography studios sessions must be booked. Bookings for photography sessions have now closed. 

Q: Do I need to book in advance?  

A: Yes. Photography sessions must be booked in advance and we will not be able to accept any walk ups on the day. You must book in advance.  Bookings are now closed. 

Q: When is the booking deadline?  

A: Photography studios must be booked in advance. All bookings must be placed before the booking deadline of Monday 5 July at midday (UK time). Bookings are now closed.

Q: Do I need to book a gown?   

A: When making your booking you will be asked to provide your award level and size requirements for your gown hire.   

Q: How long do I have my gown for the photography studios?

A: Gowns are included in the booking fee for the photography studios. You can use the gown for the 1 hour time slot of your photography session but it needs to be returned after 1 hour. If you would like to keep your gown for longer you can choose the extended gown hire option.

Q: Can I wear my gown to have photos on campus on the photography studio day?

A: You will be allocated your gown for 1 hour. If your photography session is complete within this hour you will have the opportunity to take some photos on campus in your gown. Please return your gown on time.

Q: How much does it cost?  

A:  It costs £15 for a photography session which includes use of the Queen Mary official gown. Photography packages start from £25.   

Q: Can I pay on the day?  

A: Payment can be made in advance on the booking site or on the day using touch free technology. We will not be accepting cash payments on the day. Only card payment will be accepted, and where possible we ask graduates and guests to use contactless technology.   


Q: How do I cancel my photography session? 

A: If you need to make a cancellation due to covid symptoms, or having been in contact with someone with symptoms, cancellations can be made by contacting Cancellations made with over 24 hours' notice will be refunded in full. Cancellations cannot be refunded if within 24 hours of the session or after the session. Refunds will not be processed if requested after this deadline.  

Q: I have come into contact with someone who has tested positive for covid / I am showing covid symptoms.  

A: Please follow government guidance on self isolation and cancel your session using the information provided above. Do not attend the event if you, someone you live with, someone in your bubble, or someone you have come into contact with has shown symptoms or tested positive.   


Q: Will I be able to bring guests with me?  

A: Graduates will be able to bring a maximum of 5 guests with them. Graduates need to let us know how many guests they are bringing with them at the point of booking. This is based on the government allowing groups of 6 to meet by the time the photography studios take place. If the government roadmap is not adhered to then guest tickets can be revoked nearer the time. Graduates will be updated as early as possible if this does need to happen.   

Covid-secure measures  

Q: How are you ensuring the safety of graduates and guests during the photography studios? 

A: The safety and wellbeing of our graduates, your guests, and our staff and students is our top priority. We have worked hard to implement some key safety measures, in line with government and PHE guidance, to keep everyone safe during this experience. Please find some of these below  

  • Graduates must book a time slot in advance and must have received a confirmation email to attend.   
  • Graduates are able to bring a maximum of 5 guests with them based on the rule of 6 (expected to be in place by July – if not this will be updated)    
  • Graduates and guests must adhere to the governments guidance on social distancing and social contact at all times.   
  • Graduates and guests must wear face masks at all times whilst inside campus buildings, unless exempt. The only exception to this rule is during the photography session itself.   
  • We will be operating a touch free and cash free check in and payment system to minimise touch points.   
  • Hand sanitiser stations will be made available.   
  • Gowns will not be shared between graduates.   
  • Our cleaning team will ensure that the photography studios are cleaned regularly with enhanced cleaning measures.   
  • All staff working at the studios will be temperature checked daily using a non-contact forehead thermometer.   
  • We will be taking part in the governments track and trace scheme.   
  • We ask that all graduates and guests follow government and TFLguidance on travelling safely.   

Q: Will I be required to have a test before the photography studios? 

A: Whilst we actively encourage all attendees to have tests before arriving at the photography studios we are waiting for updates from the government around measures to support the safe delivery of events. When we have this information we will touch base with all students who have booked in plenty of time before the event.  

Q: Will I need to dress myself in my gown? How do I do this?  

A: Mirrors will be provided and videos too to help you know how to correctly dress in your gown.   

Q: Do I need to wear a face mask? 

A:Face masks must be worn at all times inside Queen Mary venues. All graduates, guests and staff must adhere to Queen Mary’s covid code. The only exception to wearing face masks is for those who are exempt from wearing them. Face masks can be removed for the photography session itself.    

On the day  

Q: Where are the photography studios being held?   

A: Photography studios are being held on our Mile End Campus. Graduates will be informed of arrival information and how to access the studios in their booking confirmation and pre-event emails.   

Q: What should I wear?   

A: Graduates will be provided with a gown to wear during the photography session. When booking to attend graduates must inform us of their award and size requirements to ensure the correct gown is provided. We are only offering one gown per graduate and gowns will not be shared.    

Q: Are there changing rooms?    

A: Graduates will be provided with a gown to wear during the photography session. We do not have any changing rooms on site but there are bathroom facilities which graduates can use. Mirrors will be provided to help with dressing.     

Q: I am running late, what should I do?   

A: If you are running late on the day, please contact the number provided in your pre-event email.   

Q: Will I be able to hold a scroll during my photo session? 

A: Yes, we will have clean scrolls for each graduate.   

Q: How will I get my photos? Will I receive them on the day? 

A: You will receive your photos after the event.