Which Side Does Your Tassel Go On Before You Graduate


Which Side Does Your Tassel Go On Before You Graduate?

The tassel is a small but significant accessory that holds great meaning for graduates. It is a symbol of accomplishment and transition, marking the end of a significant chapter in one’s life and the beginning of a new journey. However, many graduates find themselves unsure of which side the tassel should be placed before the commencement ceremony. In this article, we will explore the origins and traditions associated with tassel placement and provide answers to frequently asked questions.

Origins and Traditions:

The tradition of wearing a tassel as part of the graduation regalia dates back several centuries. It is believed to have originated in European universities during the Middle Ages. During this time, scholars wore robes and hoods to distinguish themselves from the general population. The tassel, initially a decorative element attached to the hood, gradually gained its own symbolic significance.

Today, the tassel is commonly attached to the graduation cap, also known as the mortarboard. The cap and tassel are traditionally worn during the commencement ceremony, with the tassel initially placed on one side and shifted to the other side at a designated moment.

Tassel Placement:

The general rule for tassel placement is to start on the right side before graduation and then move it to the left side after receiving the diploma. This tradition is observed in most educational institutions, especially in the United States. By starting the tassel on the right, graduates symbolize their current status as candidates for graduation. Once they have received their diplomas, the tassel is moved to the left, signifying their successful completion of the academic program.

See also  How to Get a Full Ride to Law School


Q: When should I switch the tassel from right to left?
A: The moment to switch the tassel usually occurs during or immediately after the formal announcement of graduates. This may be signaled by a faculty member or the commencement speaker.

Q: Can I switch the tassel earlier if I want to?
A: While it is generally recommended to follow the tradition and wait for the official moment, some graduates may choose to switch the tassel earlier if they feel it is more meaningful to do so. However, it is advisable to check with your educational institution to ensure compliance with their specific guidelines.

Q: What if I receive multiple degrees during the same ceremony?
A: In cases where a graduate receives multiple degrees, it is customary to wear the tassel on the side corresponding to the highest degree earned. For example, if one receives a bachelor’s degree and a master’s degree, the tassel should be worn on the left side.

Q: Are there any exceptions to the right-to-left tassel placement rule?
A: While the right-to-left placement is the most common tradition, some institutions may have unique guidelines. It is essential to consult with your educational institution to ensure you adhere to their specific tassel placement instructions.

Q: Can I keep the tassel as a memento after the graduation ceremony?
A: Absolutely! Many graduates choose to keep their tassels as cherished mementos of their academic achievements. It can be displayed in a shadow box, attached to a graduation photo, or kept as a standalone keepsake.

In conclusion, the tassel holds a special place in the hearts of graduates, symbolizing their academic journey and accomplishments. By understanding the traditions and guidelines associated with tassel placement, graduates can confidently wear their regalia during their commencement ceremony. Remember, it starts on the right and moves to the left, marking the transition from candidate to graduate. Congratulations on reaching this milestone, and may your tassel always remind you of the hard work and dedication it took to get there.

See also  What Is the Atod Step 1-2-3 Education Plan?