Analysis of the experience of student participation in the implementation of effective governance based on the example of UK universities

Keywords: student voice, student involvement, student representation, students, university governance


The article focuses on the analysis of governance structures and the experience of student involvement in the university governance processes of two leading UK universities, the University of Cambridge and the University of Oxford. The purpose and practice of involving students in governance processes, as decision-makers, as equal partners, is now an important task in the development of the EHEA. To research the practices of leading European universities in this aspect can be useful for Ukrainian higher education institutions. To this end, the governance structures of the University of Cambridge and the University of Oxford are considered, as well as the basic mechanisms for involving students in governance processes. Both universities are self-governing communities with management mechanisms that respond to their missions and core values. University management systems are based on rules and principles and they are accountable and transparent to all stakeholders, including students. As for engaging students in the processes of university governance, two main mechanisms are identified: student representation in various university structures and feedback from students. Student representatives are an integral part of the university's governance structure. They are elected so that each level of representation is consistent with the next. In order for student representatives to be able to effectively perform their representative functions, an extensive network of necessary information and support is posted on student union sites. An important mechanism for student involvement in governance processes is student feedback. Universities promote this cooperation via various ways: focus groups on urgent issues; nationwide student survey; Inter-University Student survey ‘Student Barometer’; the opportunity to submit students’ initiative (for example, "I have an idea"); student advisory groups and others.


Download data is not yet available.

Author Biography

Lesya Chervona, Instituteof Higher Education of the National academy of educational of Ukraine

Doctor of Philosophy, Senior Researcher


A student engagement framework for scotland (2012). Retrieved from

Adam, F. C. Fletcher (2017). Student Voice Revolution: The Meaningful Student Involvement Handbook Paperback – September 15, 2017 : Common Action Publishing. Retrieved from

Cambridge University Reporter. University of Cambridge. Retrieved from

Engagement and feedback. Cambridge students. Retrieved from

European Higher Education Area and Bologna Process. Retrieved from

Got an idea? Cambridge University Students’ Union. Retrieved from

Guide to Being a Rep. Retrieved from

Levels of Representation. Retrieved from

Munyae M. Mulinge, Josephine N. Arasa & Violet Wawire. (2017). The Status of Student Involvement in University Governance in Kenya: The Case of Public and Private Universities. CODESRIA, Dakar.

Network and training. Retrieved from

Overview. University of Cambridge. Retrieved from

Paris communiqué: EHEA Ministerial Conference, 2018. Retrieved from

Resources Hub. Retrieved from

Russell J. Quaglia (2016). Principal Voice: Listen, Learn, Lead.Thousand Oaks, California : Corwin, a SAGE Publishing Company.

Russell J. Quaglia, & Michael J. Corso (2014). Student Voice: The Instrument of Change. SAGE Publications

Russell J. Quaglia. (2015). Student Voice: Ensuring a Sense of Self-Worth for Your Students. United States. Sage Publications Inc.

Spargs. Retrieved from

Student Academic Representatives. Cambridge students. Retrieved from

Student engagement. Oxford students. Retrieved from

Syndicates, Boards and Committees. University of Cambridge. Retrieved from,-Boards-and-Committees.aspx

The Board of Scrutiny. University of Cambridge. Retrieved from

The decision-making process. University Governance. University of Cambridge. Retrieved from

The General Board of the Faculties. University of Cambridge. Retrieved from

The Regent House A University governance guide. (2016). Retrieved from

The Regent House. University of Cambridge. Retrieved from

the Senate. University of Cambridge. Retrieved from

The University Council. University of Cambridge. Retrieved from

Abstract views: 314
PDF Downloads: 261
How to Cite
Chervona, L. (2019). Analysis of the experience of student participation in the implementation of effective governance based on the example of UK universities. International Scientific Journal of Universities and Leadership, (7), 51-64.
Leading experience in university management