How to Choose and Wear Tam

Tara Albi How To

You’re probably thinking to yourself “Do I really need instructions on how to wear a tam?”. Yes, we think you do despite the graduation tam being a mark of higher education. Tams are a better quality graduation cap than the standard mortarboard. They are made of a high-end black velvet material with a soft poof-like top. The mortarboard is a cardboard square that sits on top of the head within a polyester fabric. Even though we offer two types of tams (with or without tassel), these caps are known to have an attached jumbo gold bullion tassel. Tams are typically used for higher level graduates such as doctorate and occasionally masters.


How do I choose the correct tam? What is the difference between 4, 6, and 8 sided tams?


Tams are usually worn by faculty members to differentiate faculty members from their students. Mostly tam sides are decided based on the individuals’ stature. Four sided tams are recommended for a short, stocky build because it gives the illusion of a less round, sharper appearance. Six sided tams look best on small to medium people and the eight sided ones compliments larger, tall people.

Items You Need


  • Measuring Tape OR string and a ruler
  • Graduate’s head
  • Graduation Source Tam

The first thing you need to do before ordering is choose your correct tam size.


As you can see in the image, you have to measure your head using a tape measure. If you didn’t have a measuring tape on hand, you can use a string to wrap around head than measure it with a ruler afterwards. Tams have a stretchy elastic band to accommodate all “in between sizes.”

How to Wear Tam

Take your tam out of its packaging and make sure it is the correct size and number of sides.

Place the tam on your head. One of the corners should be facing forward bringing a point between your eyes

Front View (Without Tassel)


Back View (Without Tassel)


Adjust the top of the tam to have a slight tilt to the right

 Front View (with tassel)


Rotate the tam so the bullion tassel is on the left side of your head.

 Back View (with tassel)


Once your ceremony is completed, check out How To Safely Store your Graduation Products.