Why you need an Undergraduate or Postgraduate Sub Fusc package for your University’s formal events

Oxford University has a long history of formal traditions that make up the journey for students through their undergraduate and postgraduate years. Students have worn the outfits that accompany these traditions since medieval times. They are a necessary part of the experience, uniting students in their significant academic events and accomplishments.

Understanding the outfits required and for what events can be confusing. In this article, we will discuss what items are necessary, what they’re for and the packages you can get to cover all those needs.

What are Sub Fusc outfits?

Sub Fusc is the name for the official academic dress for undergraduate students & post graduate scholars students at Oxford University. It consists of a black gown, mortarboard cap, white collar and tie. The gown is worn open over dark clothing according to a specific dress code:

  • Dark suit
  • Dark trousers/skirt
  • White shirt/blouse
  • Dark socks/tights
  • Black shoes.
  • Black ribbon, bow tie or black tie

What events are the Sub Fusc formalwear for?

Sub Fusc is worn for all exams, degree ceremonies and some formal dining occasions.

For Undergraduates, this includes BA BTh Exams, Finalists’ Dinner, Encaenia, Matriculation, and Visiting Student Ceremonies.

For Postgraduates, this includes Masters and Doctors Exams, Viva Voce, and Convocation.

Why do you need a package?

Purchasing the items separately can be expensive and time-consuming. A package deal ensures you have everything you need in one purchase at a fraction of the cost. Having the package on hand also guarantees you are covered in case you forget events and find it difficult to source items on short notice.

What does the Undergraduate package include?

There are a variety of undergraduate packages:

What does the Postgraduate package include?

The basic postgraduate package includes a gown, mortarboard and neckwear. Additionally, we have packages including all of the aforementioned, as well as a college crew neck or a college hoody.

Do you really need to buy a Sub Fusc package?

It is possible to hire Sub Fusc garments but you would need to hire for several occasions so it would be expensive and at only £34.99 and £39.99 per package it’s cheaper to buy – plus you will be supporting cotton farmers as our gowns are 100% cotton.

When should you buy your Sub Fusc package?

It is recommended that you purchase your Sub Fusc package at the start of your studies, as you will need it available ahead of your various events and occasions. You can get all of these, in complete packages, from The Varsity Shop.


For more than 150 years, The Varsity Shop has provided students, graduates and visitors a wide range of Oxford and College clothing and accessories. For all your Sub-Fusc garments, The Varsity Shop has packages to cover you throughout your academic events. Check out the packages here.