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> recovered ... Turing’s doctoral degree

I find this phrasing a bit surprising, but maybe I can learn something about words here.

I've only ever heard "degree" used as an intangible noun, to refer to the achievement or title or whatever you want to call it.

Is it common to use it to refer to a physical object? Is it an informal way of saying diploma? Maybe a British way of saying diploma? I made some brief checks of online dictionaries and couldn't find that usage.

While I think technically incorrect, I often see "degree" used to refer to the physical certificate (diploma) as well. Perhaps in part because there is a feeling that a "diploma" is something conferred by high schools, since they typically don't use the term "degree" but do use the term "diploma".

I'm British, sounds unnatural to me too. I would have said 'degree certificate' (assuming that's what it is) though, not 'diploma'.

A 'diploma' to me is a 'degree-equivalent' (as determined by government; not, perhaps, by employers) qualification offered by non-universities.

Also British; have degree "under my belt", have degree certificate; in a folder somewhere.

As you said, you can't sieze someone's degree, at best you can invalidate it.

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