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Industrial action: Information for parents and carers

Information on the industrial action held during spring and summer 2023. Updated 4 July 2023.

What is the industrial action about?

The University and College Union (UCU) is pursuing national action short of a strike (ASOS) in the form of a marking and assessment boycott.

The dispute relates to pay and working conditions. These issues are negotiated nationally on behalf of all participating universities, and at the University of Bath we have been consistently advocating for an agreement.

What is the University doing to resolve this dispute?

This is a national issue and as a university we have been pressing for more progress at a national level to resolve the remaining dispute. We continue to do so. We deeply regret the worry this has caused our students.

We have made progress on matters that are within our control at a local level, including an agreement on job security described by the UCU as ground-breaking.

We continue to prioritise the quality of our education, student experience and maintaining positive working relationships with colleagues.

How are you helping our students who have been affected by this industrial action?

We will be doing everything practicable to try and ensure timely graduation and progression decisions for our students wherever possible, while maintaining the quality, rigour, and value of their degrees. We are publishing information and advice for our students in our online Frequently Asked Questions and providing as much information and guidance as possible to colleagues who support students.

The University and the Students Union offer a wide range of support and advice services. Our team of Information and Careers Advisers are here to support students and answer questions they may have relating to job offers and further study places.

The University has also introduced a new Marking and Assessment Boycott Hardship Fund to assist students and graduates who have incurred specific additional costs, encountered financial hardship, or who have committed to a financial outlay that they are subsequently unable to cover because of the marking and assessment boycott.

When will students receive their final marks?

All the assessments students have completed will be marked as soon as possible. Our academic departments are working to prioritise assessment and marking, and the significant majority of students will receive their marks as expected.

Results are released on the following dates:

  • Thursday 6 July – undergraduate final year students
  • Thursday 20 July – all other students

On the day, students will be sent an email telling them their unit results and end of year outcome.

For students with results affected by the industrial action, there will be additional information to inform them of this and therefore they have ‘interim’ marks, and an interim classification or award. They will be told the AD (‘admin delay’) grade shows which units and assessments are affected, what is meant by “interim”, and what happens next.

Our priority will be getting timely and robust final marks to students as soon as we can. It is not possible for us to say at this point when this will be, due to the nature of the marking and assessment boycott, but we will process them for decision-making as soon as is practicable once they are available.

Will students be able to attend summer award ceremonies?

Yes, we will be running award ceremonies as planned for final year students who would be expecting to graduate this summer. Even if a student’s assessments have been affected and they have received a final award with an interim classification, or an interim award, they are still eligible to attend ceremonies, process and to wear the academic dress associated with the degree which they have studied towards.

Graduating students will be presented by course, not award, so that no student with an interim award is disadvantaged.

How will students apply for jobs, start graduate schemes, or get onto a postgraduate course if they don't have their degree?

If a student has an offer of employment, further study or a placement that is conditional on the classification of their final award, we will provide helpful supporting information for them to share about any impacts of the industrial action.

As this is a national issue affecting many UK universities, we expect employers and other education institutions to be aware of the situation and we will ensure that we explain the context at Bath. We are liaising with employers and external bodies to ensure we have accurate information and can guide our students through the next steps.

The Institute of Student Employers is making sure employers are aware of the industrial action and has said it does not expect the boycott to impact the offers made or on-boarding process in most cases, more information is on its website.

How can I make a complaint?

A student should contact their Director of Studies, who can offer advice on their specific academic circumstances; if they are unavailable please contact the Head of Department. If a student wants a formal response, they can submit a formal complaint to the University. Visit Guidance for students: making a complaint for more information.

The SU Advice & Support Centre is independent of the University and can also help with this process, you can contact them through

If the student isn’t happy with how their complaint is handled, the University subscribes to the Office of the Independent Adjudicator (OIA) where a student can refer for an independent review once the formal University complaint process is complete.

Contact the Director of Studies

Find details of your student's Director of Studies