Academic Reps are students who have been elected by fellow students on their course or in their department to feedback the views of those they represent to their Department, the University and Students’ Union.
Academic Reps ensure that the student voice heard and help drive changes across all aspects of your education such as teaching, resources, assessments, timetabling, employability, facilities and the general university experience.
They work with their Department Staff, Faculty Rep, SU Academic Affairs Officer and other Academic Reps to raise feedback and represent students at Staff Student Consultative Committees.
What are the expectations of Academic Rep?
Being an academic rep is a simple, but important role which only takes up to 1-2 hours of your time per week.
- Attending Academic Rep training delivered by the SU in October
- Promote your role amongst students and make it clear how they can contact you
- Talk to students and collect student feedback
- Attend and participate in three Staff and Student Consultative Committees (one per term)
- Keep the SU informed with any achievements or issues
Why should I become an Academic Rep?
Be the voice of students - Being an Academic Rep allows you to take the lead on gathering student feedback (positive or negative) and voice this to staff in your department and the Students’ Union. Because you share the experience of your courses mates, you understand the issues that matter and be clear about what students want.
Create change - By voicing student feedback and working with staff to come up with solutions, you can help change and improve the education of your peers, and future students. Change can be big or small, but if it’s change for the better and it’s what students want, then you’ve made a difference!
Meet new people - Since the role is all about talking to students and other Academic Reps, you’ll definitely meet new people and make new friends! Through training and meetings, you’ll also build positive relationships with both Academic and Student Union staff.
Become more employable - Being an Academic Rep is a great way to gain transferable skills; you’ll gain organisation, time management, communication, leadership and negotiation skills just to name a few! Furthermore employers are always looking for people who have given up their time to further develop themselves and take on extra roles.
Awards and recognition - To recognise the commitment and efforts of Academic Reps, the role is recorded on your HEAR Certificate. You can also get volunteer recognition by working towards the Aber Award and you may be nominated for Academic Rep of the year!
What training and support is provided?
All Academic Reps are invited to attend one training session on election to role. This year we will be renaming our training beginners and returners training dependent on whether you have been an Academic Rep previously.
As well as training, you’ll receive a newsletter at least once a month with relevant updates, information and opportunities relating to your role – this will include the chance to attend regional and national conferences to meet reps from other faculties.
The Academic Affairs Officer and Academic Representation Coordinator are also on hand throughout the year to organise regular catch-ups, additional training opportunities and provide ongoing support should you need it.