Industrial Action: Information for Students

The University branch of University and College Union (UCU) has informed the University that it will be taking part in further industrial action which will take the form of an assessment and marking boycott from 23 May.

At this stage we do not know how many colleagues will choose not to mark assessments and exam scripts, but only a small minority of staff participated in previous rounds of action. The last exam in our current Spring diet is on 24 May (apart from a small number in professional subjects that occur after this date).

We know that our student community has already experienced significant disruption due to the pandemic and previous strike action and we are very sorry for this.  Please be assured that we are doing everything we can to minimise the impact of any future industrial action.

Support services and advice will continue to be available - you can find out more about these on our web pages

About industrial action

Why is the industrial action happening?

The action is in response to disputes over both USS pensions and pay & working conditions (pay, workload, casualisation and equality).

Will the University campus be open during the boycott?

Yes, the campus – including all learning, social and sports facilities – will remain open throughout the strike. There may be a picket line at one or more of the entrances, but students and staff will not be prevented from freely entering and leaving the campuses.

Should I still attend University during the boycott?

You will be expected to attend classes and supervisions normal unless specifically advised not to do so by your School or Research Institute.

What is action short of a strike, and what impact is this likely to have?

Those staff taking part in the boycott will not mark assessments or examination scripts or submit marks to exam boards for the period of the boycott.  

What will it look and feel like on campus?

Some staff on strike may form a picket line by standing outside university buildings and explaining to people why they are on strike. They aim to persuade fellow union members not to cross the picket line so that as many members as possible take strike action.

Anyone wishing to cross a picket line must be allowed to do so, and pickets should be carried out peacefully, without blocking entrances.

Teaching and Assessment

Will this boycott affect exams?

All exams will go ahead as planned. The industrial action means marking may not be fully completed on schedule in a small number of assessments.

Will the boycott affect coursework hand-in deadlines?

All students should meet expected deadlines unless they have been granted an extension.


Will the boycott affect marking, results, and the return of coursework?

It is possible that marking, the return of coursework and the publication of results may be affected by the marking and assessment boycott. Schools and Research Institutes will let students know about any delays as soon as they are known.

Will the boycott affect the issue of degree classifications?

It is possible that in a few instances, the University will not be able to issue final degree classifications on time.  If a delay in receiving your degree classification could affect your employment or further degree plans, the University will help by providing a predicted degree classification.

Will graduations be affected?

The University guarantees that every student who is eligible, and has registered, for graduation will graduate as planned in the summer graduation diet, even if your degree classification has not been confirmed. 

Should I submit a good cause claim if I am affected by strike action?

Good cause claims relate to adverse circumstances that impact on your ability to complete your assessment. It is not anticipated that the strike action would result in such claims because you will not be assessed on any material that has not been adequately covered. Staff will make an academic judgement as to whether adequate learning opportunities have been provided, by means of taught classes or alternative learning opportunities, such as directed study, Moodle materials, use of annotated reading lists etc.

Good cause does remain available in line with the University regulations. For more information see: Code of Assessment and the Good Cause FAQs.

I am an international student on a Tier 4 visa, will the boycott affect my attendance?

No. If necessary, Schools/Research Institutes will have alternative arrangements in place to note students’ engagement with their studies.

If you have any questions, contact your School or Research Institute.

I am a Postgraduate Research student; how will the boycott affect me?

It is possible that doctoral vivas scheduled during the period of strike action may be affected. Members of an examination committee intending to take action will be encouraged to advise any such candidates in advance. In the event that a viva is postponed, it will be rearranged as soon as possible.

Similarly, supervision meetings due to take place during the period of action may be affected. Staff will be encouraged to advise students of anticipated disruption.  The University expects that any missed supervisory meetings will be re-scheduled wherever possible.

Tuition Fees and Finance

Can I claim financial compensation because of the impact the boycott has on me?

We are confident that the boycott will not prevent you from completing the academic year on time, and so we do not propose to offer compensation.

Further Information

Who can I contact for help and advice?

If you have any further questions about the strike action, you can get help with the UofG Helpdesk.

Can I still email my lecturer/supervisor/other teaching staff?

Yes, but there may be a delayed response if the person you are contacting is on strike. If you need urgent advice please also contact your School/Research Institute administration team.

How can I make a complaint about the boycott?

Any complaints about the boycott should be addressed to

Further information on the complaints process is available at: