The Education Act 1994 defines the Students’ Union as a “representative body whose principal purposes include representing the generality of students at an establishment …in academic, disciplinary or other matters relating to the governance of the establishment.”

A Student Union is lead by five Elected Officers who are elected each year by a cross campus secret ballot. This is a requirement of the Education Act 1994.

Any current student on a University of Portsmouth course can stand except for students from the Erasmus program and Exchange.

You don’t need any qualifications or experience and a comprehensive training plan will be provided.

You can nominate yourself in 4 easy steps!

  1. Decided which role you will run for (you can only run for one).
  2. Fill in the nomination form. Visit the elections platform and complete to nomination form online. It will take about 5-10 minutes. If you need help with completing this form, please email
  3. Submitted you nomination form before 12 noon (11:59:59) on the 6th February 2020. Don't leave this to the last minute! Late nominations are not accepted.
  4. Attend candidate Academy  on Saturday 8th February 2020. This is an all day event. Part of the day is about the rules so you must attend this to be confirmed at candidate in the elections. We’ll confirm the times nearer the day and let you know.

If you do not attend you will not be recognised as a candidate. If you can’t attend please contact

All students can vote in the elections. Unlike in a local council or general election the Students’ Union uses Transferable Voting. This means you rank candidates in order of preference. This means that you place a 1 next to your favourite candidate. 2 against your 2nd favourite etc.

Watch this handy video to help you further understand the process:

All UPSU elections are overseen by a Returning Officer (a staff member or external expert) who makes sure that they are fair, transparent and successful. The Returning Officer also has an onsite Deputy Returning Officer who runs all of the Elections and ensures that the Elections are fair.

The elections have rules to help to keep the election process fair for all candidates. These can be found under the election rules sections.

A manifesto tells people why you want to represent them and why they should vote for you. This is your chance to say what you want to change, why it’s important to students, how it affects them and the positive impact it will have on their experience.

Don’t worry though, you will find out all about how to write a manifesto and how to run a campaign during the Candidate Academy. You will also find out how much budget you have to spend on your campaign and how the expense process works during the Candidate Academy.

This is a week's residential away from Portsmouth to provide you with essential training in how to be an Elected Officer. You will be away from Portsmouth throughout an entire week from 15th June 2020.

You will also have a one-to-one handover with the current Elected Officers. This will be for a whole week from 24th June.