Becoming a Rep
A Course Rep is an elected student who volunteers to gather student feedback and voice it to the University. They provide a way for students to communicate their diverse range of opinions and experiences to the staff who deliver their courses, and to make change happen.
What do Course Reps do?
As a Course Rep, you will have three responsibilities:
1. Research student opinion – Chat to the students on your course and gather as much feedback as possible, whether it is positive or about something that needs changing.
2. Represent students – You will attend departmental meetings held by the University twice a semester to give voice to what your fellow students have told you about the course.
3. Report back – Finally, you will need to let students know what has happened as a result of their feedback! This will help them see the value in sharing their opinions with you and with the University.
Why should you become a Rep?
Aside from becoming a recognisable and respected student leader, being a Course Rep comes with loads of benefits. Here’s just a few:
Free Course Rep T-shirt
Resources and freebies
Cheaper hot drinks in the Union shop
Subsidised Course Rep hoodie
A record of your role detailed on your HEAR
Logging volunteering hours
Get access to other opportunities eg. workshops, focus groups
Being a Course Rep is also a fantastic way to boost your employability, assertiveness, and communication skills. Having a leadership role on your CV when you leave University is going to help you stand out from the crowd, and help you to develop qualities you’ll need when you leave Surrey to start work – think about how much practice you’ll have in public speaking and negotiation from attending departmental meetings and representing your cohort.
What’s the time commitment?
Not as much as you might think! Many Reps easily balance their responsibilities alongside their studies and other voluntary roles, and even part-time work. You’ll need to ensure you have the time to attend your departmental meetings – these are the core responsibility to the role. You can expect to attend 3 meetings a semester, which will take up about 10 hours total.
There are also some other time commitments, such as USSU events like Student Voice Forum, and these will add around 3 hours per semester. The rest of your role will be less time-demanding – sending out emails and posting on social media to gather student opinion and to update your cohort on the results of your departmental meetings.
All in all, you’re looking at around 15 hours each semester, which works out at an average of just an hour a week!
Interested? Nominate yourself!
Any student can stand to be the Course Rep for their course, and there will be at least one per level for all courses. You just need to be ready to listen to student feedback and be willing to communicate this to staff in an effective, professional way.
The Union will provide you with training and additional rewards for your hard work! If you’re looking to make an impact at University, gain some invaluable skills, and to learn a lot, then this is the role for you.
Nominations for Course Rep elections will be happening in week 2 (8th- 12th October), followed by elections in weeks 3 & 4 (15th – 26th October).
To find out how to nominate yourself, you will need to email your Programme Leader and the relevant administrator for your school listed below to express your interest in nominating yourself:
Phil Parry – firstname.lastname@example.org
Bryony Turner – email@example.com
Hannah Beech (Health Sciences) - firstname.lastname@example.org
Juliet Margerison (Psychology) - email@example.com
Charlie Hogarth (Biosciences) – firstname.lastname@example.org
Jade Asbury (Vet School) - email@example.com
Why are Course Reps important?
At the Students’ Union, we have your academic interests as a priority, so academic representation is a core part of what we do here at the Students’ Union. Year on year, the collaboration between Course Reps, USSU and the University leads to impactful changes both in individual courses and across the University as a whole.
Rep Success page for examples of the changes Reps have made.
Course Reps are also really important to the University and crucial to the way the University operates. The feedback they provide is used by the University to make positive changes to its courses, and this improves the overall quality of the University's degrees. Quality is a very important issue to the University because this has an impact on its academic standing nationally.
Quality is also something that should matter to you, as a Surrey student, because if the University can improve its teaching and learning, this improves the quality of the degree you will achieve at the end of your 3 or 4 years here.
For more information
or come into the Students' Union to meet Hannah, our Course Rep Coordinator