Accessibility and Support at Graduations

We are committed to making graduation ceremonies accessible for all graduands and guests. If you have any accessibility requirements or are anxious about the ceremony and need some support, we will do our best to help. 

If you would like to get in touch, please email us at gradhelp@contacts.bham.ac.uk and we will be happy to talk through the options available to you.

We ask you to let us know of any access requirements for you and/or your guests at least two weeks before your ceremony so that appropriate arrangements can be organised. Please note, more advance notice will be needed for BSL bookings.

The support we have previously provided at ceremonies includes British Sign Language (BSL) interpreters, walk-throughs of the venue in advance for those with a vision impairment or anxiety, extra tickets for carers, a quiet room for those with sensory access needs or those who are breast-feeding, and assistance with getting into the Great Hall for elderly guests.

 

Where can I find disabled parking?

If you are driving to the celebrations, parking for blue badge holders is available on campus and is identifiable via the campus mobility map. Some disabled parking may require you to enter restricted campus areas. If this is the case, please press the buzzer to speak to security, who will be able to open the appropriate gate for you. Please ensure that you display your blue badge clearly.

The Venue - Great Hall

Your graduation ceremony will take place on our Edgbaston Campus in the Great Hall (Aston Webb Building). The campus mobility map shows level access routes to the Great Hall. If you require level access, you should enter via the Bramall Building (reference R12 on the campus mobility map).

Items such as mobility scooters and pushchairs can be left in designated areas. These tend to be outside of the Great Hall itself but please speak to a member of staff at the Accessibility Stand on the day of your ceremony for further guidance.

For hearing aid users, the Aston Webb reception and foyer area has an induction loop system installed and the Great Hall is fitted with an infrared (IR) hearing system.

Entrance of Bramall Music BuildingEntrance of Bramall Music Building

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Seating

Graduating students have an allocated seat at the back of the Great Hall. Guest seating is at the front of the Great Hall and is unallocated. If you would like to request specific seating arrangements, for example end of row seating, please let us know as soon as possible and we will try to accommodate this. Please email us at gradhelp@contacts.bham.ac.uk.

Logistics of the graduation ceremonies

Your ceremony will involve:

  • Being seated for approximately one and a half hours (both graduands and guests)
  • Waiting in line for approximately five minutes before your name is read out
  • Accessing the stage by a set of stairs (please let us know beforehand if you have any mobility access needs that would require alternative arrangements)
  • Accepting a scroll on stage in front of an audience
  • Leaving the stage and returning to your seat at the back of the hall via the central aisle

There will also be moments of music and clapping throughout the ceremony, which can become very loud.

If you have any concerns about the logistics of your graduation ceremony, please email us at gradhelp@contacts.bham.ac.uk to discuss how we can make the day easier for you.

Robing

If you have hired robes to wear at your graduation ceremony, these will need to be collected from the first floor of the Bramall building (reference R12 on the campus mobility map), which can be accessed using a lift. There will be members of staff from Ede and Ravenscroft available to help you put on your robes correctly. Returning of robes will be downstairs in the Bramall building, again accessible via the lift.

Bramall Lift

Photography

Ede and Ravenscroft offer a range of photography packages, which can be booked online using the same form as for hiring academic dress. Portrait photography will take place in the Nuffield Building. The studios will be open from 8.00am until 8.30pm on ceremony days, except on Wednesday 20 July when they will close at 4.30pm. The Nuffield Building has level-access entry.

Entrance to Nuffield Building

Certificate collection

Certificates and transcripts will be available for collection on the day of your ceremony in the marquee on the Green Heart (campus mobility map). The Green Heart can be accessed via a number of ramp routes. There is a stretch of grass between the pavement and entrance of the marquee, which may be difficult for wheelchairs, mobility scooters and pushchairs to move across. In this instance, you can enter the marquee via the exit, which has ramp access.

Certificate entranceGreen Heart ramp

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Where can I find accessibility support on the day?

There will be an Accessibility Stand on the day of your ceremony located in the Bramall Music Building (R12 on the campus mobility map). This stand will be staffed for one hour before each ceremony. Please visit us here if you have any questions or concerns on the day, and a member of staff will be able to assist you.

There will also be a limited number of resources available, such as:

  • Sunflower pins to subtly identify graduands or guests with invisible disabilities who may need additional support throughout the day
  • Fidget toys
  • Earplugs
  • Water for registered assistance animals