SU Meetings Guide
SU meetings are held on Sunday afternoons on odd weeks of term, usually in the JCR (full details and agendas are circulated in advance by the Vice President). All undergraduate and graduate students are welcome to attend, vote and propose motions.
As stated in the constitution, SU meetings will proceed in this order:
- Except at the discretion of the chair, the order of business at ordinary SU meetings shall be:
- Matters arising from the minutes of the previous meeting
- Reports from, and questions to, officers and representatives
- A run through of the meeting’s motions
- Motions calling for donations from the Charities and External Donations Fund
- First readings of motions to amend the constitution
- All other motions
- Discussion points
- The upcoming Oxford SU Council meeting
- Any other business
Most meetings consist of officer’s reports and then the motions. There is a break for pizza when it arrives.
Qurom: Number of people needed for an SU meeting to proceed.
- 20 for ordinary meeting + all motions passed unanimously
- 30 for ordinary meeting when motions are debated
- 60 for an emergency meeting
Motions: An action a member of the SU wants the SU to take
- Motions are normally for the SU to fund something but they have no fixed content.
Proposing a motion
Any motion to be debated needs to be sent to the chair 48 hours before the meeting. They must be proposed and seconded (supported) by a member of Wadham SU.
If you are unsure what to write, the chair will help you structure a motion. The normal structure is:
Motion to X
- This SU notes
- Generally explains what the motion is about
- This SU believes
- Outlines why the SU should support this motion
- This SU resolves
- States what the SU should do
Proposed by: Seconded by:
Debating a motion
There is a structure to how a motion is debated, to ensure a fair hearing of the motion. The discussion will be moderated by the Chair:
- Proposer summaries the content of the motion
- SU members may ask short, factual questions about the motion
- If there are no further questions and no objections, the motion has passed
- If a member wishes to debate the motion, proponents and opponents of the motion can then debate it. If you wish to contribute anonymously, you can message/pidge the chair your speech.
- If you wish to contribute, either raise one hand for general discussion or raise two if you wish to reply to what has just been said by someone in the meeting.
- If the discussion has run its course, then a motion to vote on the motion can be proposed by anyone in the SU
- If people vote in favour of voting on the motion, discussion on the motion is over.
- Two short summary speeches, in favour and against, can then be given by members of the SU.
- Then the motion is voted on.
Amending a motion
- An amendment to a motion may be proposed at any time while the motion is under discussion.
- The proposer of a motion has the right to speak on any amendment.
- FRIENDLY AMENDMENT:
- If the proposer accepts the amendment and no other member present wishes it to be taken to a vote, the motion shall be amended. If a member wishes the amendment to be taken to a vote, they must express this immediately after the proposer accepts the amendment as friendly.
- UNFRIENDLY AMENDMENT:
- If an amendment is not accepted without a vote, it shall be debated and voted on like a motion.
- If an amendment is voted on and passed, the proposer of the motion has the right to continue to propose the motion as amended. If they do not wish to do so, then the proposer of the amendment shall have the right to take up the motion as amended. Failing that, another member may take up the motion.
Voting on a Motion
All motions require a simple majority bar some exceptions. This is normally done by raising of hands. If people wish to vote anonymously or hand raising is impractical, voting via ballot is the normal way forward.
Motions requiring a two thirds majority:
- Motions to amend this constitution
- Motions of no confidence in an officer, a representative, or the chair
- Motions to overturn a ruling of an election tribunal
- Motions to overturn a ruling of the chair
If you’re an SU member and require the minutes of a meeting that aren’t uploaded yet, please email