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Access Guide to Graduation

We want to make your Graduation day as enjoyable for you and your family as possible. If you need help with access, this guide should help. If you can’t find what you need here, email our Student Disability Advisors on disabilities@soas.ac.uk. 

Choose from: 

The Graduation Ceremony

The Ceremony and reception are at different locations:

The Ceremony is at the Logan Hall at the Institute of Education, 20 Bedford Way, London, WC1H 0AL.

The reception takes place on Torrington Square, next to SOAS, straight after the Ceremony. 

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The Logan Hall has a limited number of seats with minimal or no use of stairs.

We reserve these seats for those who would be more comfortable in them. So please do let us know if you have special access needs when you book your tickets.

We recommend booking well in advance to make sure you get exactly the seat you need.

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Getting there

By car

The most convenient set-down point is outside the main entrance on Bedford Way.

Get information about disabled parking on the London Borough of Camden website.

If you’re planning to come by car, you’ll have to pay the Congestion Charge.

Public transport

The best places for access information are TfL and National Rail.

All buses in London are wheelchair accessible.

Our Travel page gives you plenty of information on how to get to SOAS by tube, rail, bus and taxi. 

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The Institute of Education

Our Graduation Ceremonies take place on level one of the Institute of Education. Gowning happens on level one and registration is on level three.

Photographs take place at the SOAS campus.

Levels one, three and four of the Institute of Education

The main entrance from Bedford Way has two doors and six steps, and a platform lift for those unable to use stairs. The lift is next to the bookshop, on the right of the main entrance, and you can access it via the ramp, with a call button. This brings you to level three of the building. There are lifts connecting all floors.

There are two automatic doors which open outwards.
 The lift will take you to level four of the Institute of Education. 
From here please follow the signs to the main lifts which are reached through double doors that are held open when the building is in use.

Levels three and four are linked by 21 steps with an intermediate landing. Levels three and one are linked by 40 steps with two large intermediate landings, which add a 35 metre walk to the descent. 

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The Logan Hall

You can only access the Logan Hall from level one.
 The doors will stay open during seating and exit.

There’s level access via the main entrance to the hall. Doors two and three take 20 and 24 steps respectively. Graduands will usually be asked to enter using door one which requires the use of 6 steps.

You can access all seats in the hall internally, regardless of the entrance you use.

Once the Ceremonies are over, please leave the Institute of Education the same way you entered.

We’ll do our best to make sure those who need it can get quick and easy access to the lifts before the auditorium empties, but there might be some delays when dealing with large crowds.


Most of the seats in the Logan Hall require the use of some steps. If you tell us that you or a guest are wheelchair users or has limited mobility we’ll allocate an appropriate seat for you.

Stage access for graduands

There are four steep (23cm) stairs that graduands can use to access the stage, with a handrail on the right side.

Graduands also traditionally join the academic procession as it makes its way to the top of the hall up all 31 steps and then down again to the foyer.

If you feel this might be difficult for you, email ceremonies@soas.ac.uk straightaway so we can discuss alternatives.

Hearing impairment

There’s an induction loop in the Logan Hall.
 If you have a hearing aid, you’ll need to set your device to the ‘T’ position.

Guide dogs and hearing dogs

When you buy your tickets, please let us know if you or a guest will be accompanied by a guide dog or hearing dog. We’ll make sure the dog can sit with you comfortably.

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Facilities at the IoE


There are toilets on all the levels occupied by the graduation ceremonies with wheelchair access on levels one and four.


There are three passenger-operated lifts that let you access all the Graduation Ceremony areas in the Institute of Education.

These lifts have a 107cm automatic door and are 107cm by 172cm. They have voice announcements.


There’s a complimentary cloakroom on level three, near the main Bedford Way entrance. It has a 76cm-high counter height and you can get to it using the lifts.

First Aid

Please come to the SOAS Information Desk on level one if you need help.

Food and drink

The Institute of Education has two main catering outlets:

1. The coffee shop on level four

2. The student union cafe which you can access via level four.

You can access the student union cafe using the two access lifts separated by a landing. To use the lifts, you’ll need assistance from the main Institute of Education reception on level four.

Our main catering outlets at SOAS are:

1. The Refractory in the basement. You can access it via the lifts.

2. The Student Union on the ground floor.

Public telephones

There are public telephones on level four near the coffee bar, and one of these phones is on a lower level, suitable for wheelchair users.


If you have any other questions on Graduation day please let us know at the SOAS graduation information desk on level one, just outside the Logan Hall.

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Your reception

After the Ceremony, there’ll be a reception on Torrington Square, just next to the SOAS Main College Building, a two-minute walk from the Institute of Education.


Someone will be there to direct wheelchair users to the toilets in the Brunei Gallery.


There’ll be limited seating within the reception venue, but there are benches around the Square.


At the reception, we try to accommodate all dietary needs, and label everything clearly. If you have any allergy worries, one of the waiting staff will be able to help.

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