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Understanding Honors Regalia

Degree candidates may be eligible to wear one of the following honors hoods or cords during commencement ceremonies. Distribution of honors regalia is coordinated by the individual college or group awarding the honor.

Honors College Hoods


Students who earn the Honors College Degree, the highest academic distinction awarded to undergraduates at OSU, wear hoods at the commencement ceremony as part of their regalia. To earn the Honors College Degree, students must complete both the General Honors Award and the College or Departmental Honors Award with a minimum of 36 honors credit hours with grades of "A" or "B" and both an OSU and a cumulative grade point average of 3.50 or higher at the time of graduation. The honors degree is reflected on students' transcripts, and a special honors diploma is awarded.

Academic Regalia and Baccalaureate Hoods


University graduates first began wearing academic gowns that resembled clerical garments in the 12th and 13th centuries, primarily for warmth in drafty buildings. Caps were not worn at that time, but hoods served as the traditional head covering. Candidates for the Honors College Degree at Oklahoma State University are the only undergraduates who wear a baccalaureate hood with their academic regalia. Since the 19th Century, the lining of the hood has shown the colors of the institution conferring the degree, and the trim of the hood has indicated the graduate’s discipline:

Honors Degrees Hood Facing Color
Bachelor of Architecture Purple
Bachelor of Arts White
Bachelor of Engineering Orange
Bachelor of Fine Arts Brown
Bachelor of Music Pink
Bachelor of Science Golden Yellow
Bachelor of Science in Agricultural Sciences and Natural Resources Maize/Light Yellow
Bachelor of Science in Business Administration Drab/Tan

Veteran Honor Cords

The red, white and blue Veteran Honors Cord designates those individuals who have served in any branch of the United States armed forces. More information on Veteran Cords can be found at

Community Service Honorary CORD


Graduating students may qualify for an honorary orange CORD if they have served at least 400 hours as an undergraduate or 300 hours as a graduate student at OSU-Stillwater. The Service-Learning Volunteer Center recognizes students who qualify for the CORD receive an honorary orange CORD to wear at graduation, which signifies their commitment to service as OSU students and alumni. These hours must be recorded with us on CampusLink. Please visit our website at for more information on CORD and how to record your hours.

Order of Omega Honor Cords


The Order of Omega recognizes men and women who are members of OSU's fraternity and Sorority community and have attained a high standard of leadership. Those initiated in the Order of Omega are recognized at commencement ceremonies with gold and white cords.

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