Society Elections

Nominations shall be open in 


Volunteering with RSU 

Society leadership is a voluntary position, and people of all backgrounds and experiences get involved. 

All Society volunteers benefit from:

  • A dedicated member of staff at RSU to provide ongoing support, problem solving, and opportunities 
  • Training and induction to your new role 
  • A clearly defined role profile outlining the tasks and responsibilities of your role
  • Opportunities for recognition of your achievements such as the annual RSU Awards

To look at a more detailed role description for each Society leadership position, please click on the role descriptions below:

We strongly recommend that you speak to the current Society leaders of the Society you seek to stand for election for. Each Society is different, and they will be able to give you a more tailored view of what it's like to run the Society.  

Accessible Volunteering

We believe volunteering as a Society Leader should be accessible to everybody and a wide range of students get involved each year.

In line with our Student Volunteering Policy, if you have any questions about the practical arrangements of volunteering with us please get in touch for a confidential discussion. 

A wide range of students volunteer as Society Leaders, with a quater being mature students and half declaring a known disability (data as of 2023). Volunteering is flexible and reasonable adjustments can often be made. 

International Students' Volunteering 

As an international student, if you do not have the right to live and work in the UK without restriction you may be concerned about taking on a volunteering role at RSU as the Home Office places restrictions on 'voluntary work'.

All RSU Society Leadership roles do not constitute 'voluntary work' and therefore do not contribute to your restrictions. This is broken down in further detail here:

Society Leadership does not:

  • Require a contract with RSU 
  • Entail being provided work by RSU that requires you to attend at particular times to carry out specific tasks
  • Renumeration of any kind (though we do pay back reasonable and agreed expenses)
  • Replace a paid-employee or role

If you are ever in any doubt about this please email to get in touch.

Voting Explained

Voting in RSU Society elections is restricted to current members. This means, if you are not a member of a given Society, you cannot vote or stand in its election.


If you have forgotten to get your Society membership and want to stand or vote, you will need to do so before voting opens - memberships are frozen during this time.


At RSU, all Society elections voting is done online. This ensures that it can be conducted freely and fairly, reduce admin for current Society leaders, and that there are no hidden barriers for members to get involved.


At RSU we use a system called Single Transferable Vote. A handy explanation of what this means can be found via the RSU Youtube channel.


Society Elections Rules

General Rules


1. RSU Society Elections are subject to the law, University of Roehampton regulations, and RSU policies and byelaws. Candidates and campaigns must adhere to these at all times.


2. The Elections will be conducted in accordance with RSU byelaws and Elections Rules and guidelines. The Returning Officer’s interpretation of the Elections Rules and guidelines is final.


3. All students have the right to vote free from influence exerted by candidates providing they are a member of the Society.


4. Candidates may withdraw from the Election at any point by informing the Deputy Returning Officer at


5. RSU reserves the right to postpone or stop an Election at any time if they believe an Election is not being conducted in a free and fair manner.


Candidate Campaigning


6. Campaigning is permitted online and on campus from the moment a candidate completes their nominations application. It is their responsibility to ensure their campaign abides by the election rules and any further guidance provided.


7. Candidates must not interfere with, remove, or change other candidates’ promotional materials, even if material posted is in breach of the Elections Guidelines. Candidates should notify RSU if they believe promotional material is in contravention of the Elections rules and guidelines.


8. Candidates are prohibited from campaigning within RSU and Library spaces. This includes, but is not necessarily limited to, the interior of the RSU Building, Hive Café, and library. This also includes all RSU-affiliated online and social media spaces. Candidates must obtain permission of the incumbent Society Leaders to campaign at a Society event.


9. Candidates must obtain the permission of the owner or manager of any space such as walls, windows, pillars, or doors, before posting any campaign materials. This includes, but is not necessarily limited to, virtual spaces like Society social media pages or groups, websites, or online forums.


10. Candidates must not bribe, impersonate, or harass any student throughout the elections period.


11. Candidates must not attack other candidates in a derogatory or inflammatory manner in person, in writing, by illustration, or online. Candidates are encouraged to engage in discussion and debate about ideas, views, and opinions, and it is expected these are done in a constructive, respectful manner.


12. Candidates must campaign individually. Candidates are prohibited from campaigning as part of a team with the support of other candidates: publicising other candidacies, appearing together in or sharing physical or virtual resources.


13. Campaign materials are permitted to reference the RSU, University of Roehampton, and the Colleges, but must not display their logos.


Candidate Resources


14. RSU, University of Roehampton staff, and the Colleges are prohibited from endorsing any candidates. Current Society committee members not seeking re-election are prohibited from endorsing any candidates.


15. Candidates are prohibited from dressing up in any of the official college mascot costumes.


Incumbent Society Leaders


16. Candidates who already hold an elected or appointed position within the Society may not use the Society or the Students’ Union’s time, funds, resources, or official social media to enhance their own campaign or hinder that or another candidate for the duration of the Election period.


Environmental Guidance


17. RSU holds values relating to environmental awareness, and all students are encouraged to consider the environmental impact of campaigning. For any questions about ensuring your campaign is environmentally conscious, please contact




18. All students have the right to vote free from influence exerted by candidates.


19. All students enrolled at the University of Roehampton (or partner colleges or institutions) are eligible to vote if they are a member of the Society.


20. Voting will be held online at Any electronic device which can be used to vote will be classified as a polling station. Candidates and their campaign teams are prohibited from interfering with any polling station and cannot give their own or a hired device to another student to vote from.


21. Voting will be by secret ballot, with all votes being cast in confidence.


22. The votes will be counted by the ‘Alternative Transferable Vote’ system as defined by the Electoral Reform Society. This system will be explained online when students go and cast their vote and at the ballot stations.


23. Re-open nominations (RON) shall be a candidate for all positions.


24. The Elections voting counts will be conducted through an automated software using our membership system. In the event of a tie the winner shall be determined by a coinflip overseen by the RO.


25. Any challenge or complaint concerning the administration and good conduct of the Election shall be received in writing by RSU prior to the closure of polls. This includes any complaints about another candidate’s campaign.


26. Any challenge or complaint shall be heard and determined by the Returning Officer within two working days (where possible) of a written complaint being lodged by any full voting member or a standing candidate.


27. Any standing candidate who is the subject of a complaint shall be notified of the complaint lodged against them at the earliest convenience. After being notified, the candidate who is subject to the complaint has two working days to submit an appeal in writing to RSU, at


28. After the polls have closed, any challenge or complaint can only relate to the conduct of the count and must be lodged in writing to RSU at RSU shall resolve the complaint within two working days of the complaint being lodged.


29. RSU shall decide on the penalty of a candidate complaint. This may range from a verbal warning to disqualification from the Election.


30. The Returning Officer is responsible for the final interpretation of the Society Elections Rules & Regulations, and the final decision on the matters sits with them.




If you have any questions about or require clarification of these Rules and Regulations, please do not hesitate to contact


These Rules and Regulations were passed by RSU Activities, RSU Advice, and RSU Student Voice Coordinators on the 16/03/2023.

Questions and Complaints

Any questions or complaints relating to the free and fair conduct of the elections should be directed to


Any specific questions related to the Society you are hoping to stand for should be emailed to the Society directly, you can find their information via their Society page.