What is the University doing to minimise the impact of the industrial action on students?

University colleagues are working closely with the Students’ Union to minimise the impact of industrial action on our students.

University Senate (the body which oversees academic matters for the University) has agreed that the potential industrial action constitutes an emergency situation. This decision allows Emergency Guidance to be used for programme delivery and assessment where disruption has occurred, and for any further disruption until the end of the academic year.

The Emergency Guidance covers the arrangements to deal with the impact of the strikes in terms of teaching, supervision, provision of subject information and potential loss of learning opportunities.

The emphasis in the Emergency Guidance is to ensure fair treatment of all students to maintain academic standards and to protect student education and allow students to progress or achieve their awards. The Guidance enables the University to take a number of steps to take account of the impact of the emergency situation as they affect individuals and/or groups of students, including;

  • considering alternative ways to enable students to achieve the learning outcomes of their programme if classes cannot be rescheduled (this might include provision of materials in alternative formats, supported self-study, online materials or other options)
  • further adjustments to submission or feedback deadlines
  • determining which subject topics should be included in assessments and examinations, to reflect the impact of the strike action
  • considering alternative forms or revised schedules of assessment where appropriate
  • making appropriate decisions about progress to the next stage, or degree classifications, with an understanding of the impact of the emergency (including progression and assessment arrangements for postgraduate research students). This includes the use of discretion by Boards of Examiners in taking account of overall performance.

Please note, all student services, including the Library, Student Wellbeing, Careers and Sports Services, will be operating as usual.

Following the University and College Union’s (UCU) announcement on 20 April 2023 of their plan to take further industrial action, including a marking and assessment boycott, the University introduced a ‘no detriment’ approach to ensure students whose assessments were impacted by this action could progress to the next stage of their programme, or graduate, where possible, with the reassurance that their academic outcomes would not be seriously affected by industrial action.  

You can find out more about the no detriment approach here.

The UCU announced the end of the marking and assessment boycott on 6 September 2023.’ 


Last reviewed: 07.09.2023