Graduation Planning

Graduation Invitation Wording and Etiquette


You’ve mastered high school, college, or maybe even a graduate degree; now it’s time to master the perfect graduation announcement or invitation. We’ve put together some tips on what you might want to include promoting your big milestone!


Graduation Announcement Tone

Before we get into any wording, let's look at some options to include on your graduation invitation or announcement. There are many similarities between graduation announcements and graduation invites. Photos are powerful and including them on either type of card is sure to make a statement. There are a lot of different styles, layouts, and designs available on Paper Culture that allow you to showcase a number of grand memories.

When choosing and crafting great graduation party invitations and announcements, it is even more important to know who the person of honor is. Did they hit the books all night to make it to the big day, or were they more of a class clown who laughed his way to the top? This is what will set the tone for your graduation announcements, invites, and maybe even theme and decor.

Many graduates like to include inspirational, religious, or funny quotes on your graduation cards. Generally, these quotes are from famous celebrities or powerful figures from history, but some choose to make things more personal by using a quote from family or friends. This definitely adds a bit more emotion to your graduation card.

Once you have taken a look at the type of person the graduate is, you're ready to decide on what type of graduation announcement wording you'll want to use. Often times, it's good to match the tone of your graduation invitation wording to the design of your card design. There are plenty of designs to choose from, and adding photos can truly help create an atmosphere that emphasizes your words' impact.


High School Graduation Invitation Wording

Graduating high school tends to make people feel more nostalgic as they reminisce about the past. While there have been plenty of times to trigger quite the emotional reaction, there have been just as many (if not more) fun times that have made the experience one to remember for a long time, even past the Facebook memories. Often times, high school graduation means a party with family and friends in an informal setting.

Most invitations include a lot of the same features:

  • Attention grabbing headlines are always welcome. You don't have to reinvent the wheel on this one. Something simple, such as "Guess Who's Graduating?" could work.
  • People have to know the whats, wheres, and whens of your graduate's party - date, time, location, and RSVP contact phone number.
  • Include future plans or a quote for more effect.


For the actual wording of the invite, keep things simple and light. As these parties are usually informal affairs, the invitation can reflect that as well. Let things flow as you would if you were talking to someone in person and casually inviting them. Use the first-person in your writing and show action whenever possible.

  • You aren't making a grand statement here. It's often best to not overthink things and simply go with what feels right.
  • Be sure to use action in your writing and avoid using the passive voice. Instead of writing 'Jane is going to be graduating' say 'Jane is graduating.'
  • Keep sentences short. Using action in your writing will help with this and highlight the details you want them to see.


College Graduation Announcement Wording

College graduation is a more formal affair usually, though it can be an informal gathering depending on your grad's personality. These type of graduation cards are usually announcements that may include an invitation. If you are having a party, be sure to include the pertinent information and follow the same rules as above.

For announcements, there are a few differences to be noted from the section above:

  • Use more formal writing, which includes full names of graduate and hosts, complete titles, no contractions or abbreviations, and spell out numbers.
  • Be sure to honor everything it took to get here by listing specific accomplishments.
  • It's more common to have themed parties for college graduations. Play around with fonts to find one that matches the theme of your celebration.


Writing great graduation invitations and announcements isn't as hard as it seems. Just remember who you're writing for. You want your words to resonate with your audience and bring out an emotional reaction. Write what you feel and your recipients are sure to feel the excitement of the grad-to-be.

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