Elections Hub | Edinburgh College Students' Association

Reasons to stand

Timeline

How will elections work?

Election Rules

Have you got questions about what it's like being a student officer? Or what the election will be like? Don't worry! We are here to answer your questions. We have scheduled a couple of drop ins to get all your answers. Simply click the link on the date and time that suits and you'll be taken to a drop in with a member of staff. 

4th February 4-5pm

24th February 12-1pm

5th March 10-11am

If none of the above times suit you, you can register your interest and someone will be in touch to arrange a chat about the role.

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The Students' Association is run by a team of elected student officers. Each year, they're up for election, and that's where you come in!

This is the best job you'll ever have. Check out what previous officers have said about their experiences here and here

The three full-time officers each have a remit they work on: our President focuses on education issues, our VP Activities works towards setting up clubs and societies, and our VP Welfare works with the college to ensure good student mental health and supports our equalities groups. The elected officers take office on the 1st of July and will remain in post for the full year, working 35 hours a week at £17,500 per year. 

Timeline

Nominations open: Monday 1st February 2021
Nominations close: Monday 8th March 2021 at 11am
Candidate briefing: Monday 8th March at 4pm (on Teams) 
Voting opens: Monday 22nd March 2021
Voting closes: Friday 26th March 2021
Results announced:  Friday 26th March 2021

If you have any questions or want to talk to us about running in the election, the staff team are impartial and will keep your ideas secret! You can contact the staff here.

How will the elections work?

There are two main phases to the election process:

  • During the nomination period: you come up with the reasons why students should vote for you, you’ll submit your nomination form, then you’ll start to campaign
  • During the voting period: you’ll continue to campaign for students to vote for you, they’ll vote for the candidates they want to be elected, then we’ll announce the results

All election activity will take place online for the 2021 Elections. This includes nominations, candidate question time, voting, and results. All current Edinburgh College students are eligible to vote with their student login. 

As a candidate you should encourage students to vote for you, however, voter intimidation is not allowed and you should give students the peace to cast their vote confidentially. 

Once nominations close, ECSA will work with candidates to populate the Election Hub with information about all candidates. Candidate Question Time will be hosted on Tuesday 23rd of March, where students can ask questions of all candidates. 

Voting will be open for 5 days and students can vote from their own devices. Once the vote is closed, ECSA will count the results. Results will be announced at the live Election Results show on Friday 26th March. 

How does the voting work? 

At ECSA, like most student associations, voting is done in secret and we use a Single Transferable Vote for the elections. This means when you vote, you order the candidates for each position in the preference you would like them to win. We then count up all the votes and if someone doesn’t have over 50% of the vote in the first round, we remove the candidate with the least votes and recount after redistributing all the 2nd preferences to other candidates. This ensures that even if your candidate (1st choice) doesn’t get elected, students' votes will not be wasted.  

We also have a R.O.N option which stands for Re-Open Nominations. This allows students the option to vote for this candidate if they don’t want to vote for any of the other candidates. This would need to get over 50% of the vote to trigger another election. 

It can be a slightly confusing process to explain in words so if you still aren’t sure you can watch this video here that explains it a bit more visually:

 

How can I campaign? 

As all campaigning will take place online we’ve listed some ways you can campaign below. You might think of ways we have not thought about, so don’t let this limit you, thin out of the box!  

  • Make your own FB page and post regularly
  • Invite students to like your page to build your audience
  • Other social media is grand, but most students are on FB, and we have the Virtual Campus group to engage with lots of students
  • Upload your video onto your FB candidate page, and share that into the Virtual Campus to get engagement with your candidate page rather than linking to YouTube video
  • Anyone campaigning on your behalf also has to follow the same rules
  • Candidate Question Time: ECSA will host a live Candidate Question Time where you get to speak directly to students about why they should vote for you. Make sure you’re prepared!
  • Class Rep Chat channel on Teams

We ask that students consider what is a reasonable amount of posting when sharing content to the Virtual Campus and Class Rep Chat channel on Teams. We recommend limiting your posting to 2 posts a week. 

What will ECSA do for election publicity?

  • Website Election Hub with all manifestos, pictures and videos
  • Social media promotion of elections (Facebook/Instagram/Twitter)
  • Microsoft Teams
    • Vote button on left
    • Class Rep group
  • Class shout outs about elections
  • Moodle banner for elections
  • College student newsletter
  • College all-student text
  • MyEC
  • ECSA Mailing lists

Election rules

Campaigns must be conducted fairly and with respect for both the other candidates and the diverse student population.

Slander, libel, sabotage, or any other form of mal intent towards another candidate, on any platform, may result in you being disqualified from the election and your nomination will become void 

In short treat people in the way you’d like to be treated and everything should be fine. You are also responsible for the behaviour of anyone campaigning on your behalf so please make sure any campaign teams are fully aware of this.  

All candidates should adhere to the following:

  • Edinburgh College Code of Conduct, regulations and policies (including but not limited to IT, Health and Safety, Positive Behaviour Anti-bullying & Harassment policy)
  • The laws of Scotland

Helping each other out and things that current officers are allowed to do

Candidates are allowed to work together or by themselves during elections, it is all about encouraging students to vote after all. 

ECSA and all of its staff have no say in elections and as such, they can’t show any preferential treatment for candidates in their roles. Please don’t ask ECSA staff to publicly support your campaign (that includes inviting us to like your Election page).  

This extends to current Full-Time Officers – they cannot campaign for themselves or anyone else while working for ECSA. This means they will need to take time off of work, and campaign while not performing their role. For example, if they are attending a Class Rep meeting they cannot ask people to vote for them. They can however promote the elections generally as this promotes all candidates. 

Keep in mind once elections are over you could be working with any one of the other candidates from the other positions and you will need to work as a team regardless of who is elected. 

Who can I contact?

If you have questions about the elections or any of the above email elections@ecsa.scot

Should you have any concerns about election conduct or you want to make a complaint please email Al Wilson - Deputy Returning Officer on al@ecsa.scot