You have one day left to vote on the NSS boycott

The NSS means universities with higher ratings may be able to charge students higher tuition fees


The Guild is holding a ‘preferendum’ over whether it should campaign to boycott the National Student Survey, which has proposed that universities with higher ratings may be able to charge students higher tuition fees. The Guild website has explained:

“The government is planning changes to higher education. One of the plans is to introduce a Teaching Excellence Framework (TEF) to assess teaching quality. How an institution scores in TEF could affect tuition fees – it is suggested that Institutions that score highly will be allowed to charge higher fees.

“Delegates at this year’s National Union of Students (NUS) National Conference voted for the NUS to find the most effective strategy to challenge this – either by boycotting or sabotaging the National Student Survey. The NUS has consulted with their members and launched a campaign to cut the link between tuition fees and TEF. NUS will support Students’ Unions to take action against the TEF.”

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There are three voting options that students will be able to select by ranking them in order of preference:

  • Yes, the Guild should begin a campaign for students to boycott the National Student Survey.
  • The Guild should only campaign for students to boycott the National Student Survey in the event that the NUS undertake a risk assessment and equality impact assessment and the Guild Officers consider the outcome of such assessments to be satisfactory.
  • No, the Guild should not campaign for students to boycott the National Student Survey.

The Tab spoke to Faisal Yousif and Olly McDowell who told us why they are campaigning to encourage people to vote yes:

“We’re fighting for everyone to boycott this awful survey, which already doesn’t work. Uni’s that score well aren’t better sites, they’re just better at getting students to fill it out. So if you want fees not to go up and you want international students to still be able to come here (see Amber Rudd), then vote yes to boycott!”

They also have a full statement on the Guild website.

Oba Akinwale, deputy president of the Guild, is backing the no vote because he feels boycotting the NSS would not achieve what it sets out to and would therefore be a waste of Guild time and resources. Ananda Mohan, vice president of the Guild, is backing the ‘only if’ vote. This means he believes that we should at first make sure the NUS’s risk assessment and equality impact assessment should be considered first, believing we must wait until we have all the information to ensure the benefits of the boycott will outweigh the risks.

Voting closes at this Friday at 2pm.

The Guild are also asking for students’ votes on student representatives to become NUS delegates.