These are the worst Russell Group SUs in the country according to students

Half of all students think their SU isn’t doing a good job, survey suggests

It’s no secret that Students’ Unions struggle to connect with the young people they seek to represent.

Just 53 per cent of the 315,000 students surveyed as part of the National Student Survey 2021 said their SU or guild effectively represents them.

Russell Group universities occupied much of the bottom end of the table, with only 29.47 per cent of Durham students saying that their SU does a good job.

This table shows the percentage of students at different Russell Group universities who think their Students’ Union IS actually doing a good job.


Nick Hillman, director of the Higher Education Policy Institution, thinks that many Students’ Unions are seen as irrelevant by students.

“The turnout at student union elections is woefully low, 10 or 20 per cent in some cases,” Hillman told The Times. “The best student unions are usually the ones that do the least national politics and spend the most time focusing on the needs of their own students.

“They concentrate on things like, are essays coming back quickly enough, does the campus have decent facilities. There does seem to be a correlation between higher levels of middle class students at an institution and the more politicking it does.

“Those that focus more on their own universities are those that do better, and too much of a focus on national or international issues risks alienating students if it does not leave time for campus issues.”

The National Student Survey also found that the number of students who were satisfied their courses in 2021 was down by eight per cent in comparison with the previous year.

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