Students Rights

Students are entitled to the protection of their basic rights. This includes having the right to complain and appeal against unfair action taken against them. NUS and students’ unions help make students aware of their rights and support students undergoing complaints and appeals.

An Introduction to Human Rights
Representation and Redress
Unfair Terms of Practice in HE

Quality and Public Information

Quality and standards in UK higher education are currently overseen by the Quality Assurance Agency (QAA). Students’ unions participate in their institution’s internal quality assurance processes and engage with QAA reviews. Inspection and regulation of quality in further education is overseen by Ofsted.

Education providers are increasingly required to provide public information regarding quality to assist prospective students’ choices and for public accountability.

Appeals and Complaints                                                   

All students in further and higher education have the right of recourse to an independent complaints body if their institution fails to support their education properly. It is vital that students understand and are aware of the complaints and appeals procedures of their institution, and that students’ unions are able to support students who submit a complaint or appeal.


The Home Office and UK Visas and Immigration (UKVI) have increasingly targeted international students as an easy win in the broader immigration debate in the UK.

As pressure on the government to remove international students from net migration figures increases, the International Students’ Campaign is leading the charge in securing the rights of international students in the UK.


The rights of those in work-based learning positions such as placement years or apprentices are equally as important as those in established educational institutions. Students’ unions must engage with and represent students who are on professionally accredited courses with integrated work-based learning as a part of their curriculum.

The National Society of Apprentices was formally launched in February 2014. We are working with more than 120 training providers and employers, representing over 150,000 apprentices from across all sectors and industries, across the whole of the UK.

National Society of Apprentices
Apprentice Voice - Presentation
One Million Voices - Presentation
NUS Apprentice Extra
Briefing on Placement Students
Education Information - Placement Students