Student rep systems will vary according to your institution, its size and relationship with your university/college. as well as the resources you have available.
However, Higher Education Funding Council for Wales (HEFCW) identifies three main models of student rep systems:
- Model A - organisation of representation managed at faculty, school or department level without clear links to the SU;
- Model B - management of representation led by the faculty, school, or department and supported by the SU;
- Model C - organisation of representation led by the institution through Student Services
For students’ unions, however, there are some common elements shared by rep systems. Many unions will:
- Provide, facilitate or assist in the training and election/recruitment of course representatives, ensuring that they are aware of their role and responsibilities or provide guidelines for academic staff to assist with this.
- Provide reps with a handbook, additional training or guidance on enhancing their personal development or articulating their skills used as a rep.
- Encourage reps to feedback on their experiences in meetings with academic staff.
- Hold events or meetings with reps throughout the year or provide reps with newsletters throughout the year to ensure a line of communication is upheld between officers and the institution.
- Display materials or information for reps on union or student-focused websites or portals.
- Assist reps with resources or support that they need to represent students and promote themselves and communicate with other reps and their student body.
- Reward, recognise or stimulate reps’ work through certification, accreditation, volunteering skills or awards for their time commitment, references, internal benefits, competitions, social events, payment or other means.
- Advertise student representation, the election of course representatives and the roles available through student-focused publicity campaigns.
- Evaluate and benchmark involvement in representation and effectiveness of reps contribution during the year for internal or institutional purposes.
- Use reps input to report or provide information to be taken to institutional meetings by officers and use them as a means to galvanise support for campaigns or assess depth of institutional problems.
- Encourage or establish a relationship with academic staff responsible for reps.
- Keep records of reps names and details/minutes of meeting reps participate in or will be asked to attend