News Article

February UCU Strike Poll Result

February UCU Strike Poll Result

Results from the student poll for the upcoming UCU industrial action

This week we have been asking our student body to inform us of their view on the upcoming UCU industrial action (read our full statement). The industrial action is in opposition to pensions, and pay and working conditions, and could result in lectures being cancelled, in addition to the action taken earlier this academic year in November and December 2019.

The results of this week’s poll are presented below, as well as our next steps in terms of how we will be actioning these results to best support our students. We encourage students to continue to contact each of the Student Leadership Team about the strikes or email with any concerns, or complete our feedback form, which will remain open throughout the action.

The results of the UCU industrial action poll show that 85% of students support the cause of the industrial action, however this is split in terms of support for the strike action, with only 37% supporting the strike action, compared to 41% in November. Please note that this is a snapshot of student opinion. 

February 2020 Result

November 2019 Result


Additional Info

Having lived through some industrial action in the academic year, there is a rise of 11% from the November poll of students not supporting the action; 61% of students now do not support the strike action proposed by UCU. Despite this, there is overwhelming support for the cause of the industrial action, which UCU are taking in opposition to proposed changes to pensions, and pay and working conditions.

88.4% of postgraduate students who completed the poll support the cause of the strike, with 53.9% supporting the strike action. Breaking postgraduate down to postgraduate research (PGR) and postgraduate taught (PGT) students, 96% of PGR students support the cause, with 74% supporting the action. 85% of PGT students support the cause, with 43% supporting the action.

Pledged Actions

For students supporting the cause and the strike:  

  • Physical presence of elected officers alongside the picket line (tea and coffee etc). 
  • Supporting students to directly contact UCU, facilitating a conversation between UCU and Exeter students to keep students informed of the negotiations.   


For students who voted to support the cause but not the strike:   

  • Represent students’ view at Exeter Education Executive   
  • VP Welfare and Diversity will meet with Mike Shore-Nye (University of Exeter Registrar) to raise student concerns.  
  • Revisit the open letter in order to pressure the University to enter negotiations. 
  • Work with lecturers and UCU to hold teach out session of campus
  • Support student social media campaigns in favour of the cause (if applicable)
  • President to meet with the governors of the university, to whom the senior management team are directly accountable, to further pressure the senior management to reach a solution with UCU.  


For students who voted that they do not support the cause or the strike:   

  • Elected Officer drop-in session  
  • Signposting to Advice and Wellbeing Services 
  • Encourage UCU to look into other ways of achieving resolutions (e.g., negotiation) 


For students that voted they ‘do not know’ about the UCU and strike action we will:  

  • Signpost students to all available information, outlining both sides of this complicated issue with an opportunity to meet with elected officers to listen to their views and help them form their opinions if desired.  



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University of Exeter Students' Guild is a Charity and Company Limited by Guarantee. Registered Charity Number: 1136468 Company Number: 07217324; registered in England and Wales Registered office: Devonshire House, Stocker Road, Exeter, EX4 4PZ