Frequently Asked Questions

Election process

Where can I find information about nomination eligibility criteria?
Eligibility criteria for student and staff positions are outlined in the Election Regulations (Part 3. S10. Entitlement to be nominated for elections).

Can I nominate for a position in a category that I don’t currently belong to?
You can only nominate for a position in a category that you currently belong to. Eg. if you are currently an undergraduate student and will be a postgraduate student next year, you can only nominate in the category you currently belong to.

How do I nominate as a candidate and where can I find more information?
Nominations can be submitted via the unique link provided in the BigPulse emails. Further information on ‘How to nominate’ can be found here.

How do I vote in the elections and where can I find more information?
Voting can be submitted via the unique link provided in the BigPulse emails. Further information on ‘How to Vote’ can be found here.

What should I do if I can’t find the BigPulse emails?
Look for the BigPulse emails in your Swinburne email Inbox or Junk Emails. If you can’t locate them, try searching “bigpulse” or “swinburne elections”. Still can’t find them, email the returning officer.

Where can I find the names of the election candidates?
Candidate names are published in the Notice of election.

Where can I find the election results?
The election results are published in the Notice of election.

What happens if there are insufficient candidates for positions?
The Elections Regulations (Part 4. S13. Insufficient candidates) applies to all vacancies if no candidates are nominated for election to a body in a particular category or all candidates nominated for election to a vacancy withdraw before being elected.


What is a ballot period?
The period during which persons may vote at an election.

Who is BigPulse and what is their role in the University elections?
BigPulse is an electoral company specialising in high security online elections and nominations. The University engages BigPulse for the purpose of conducting secure online elections.

What does ‘first past the post’ mean?
Election results are determined using plurality voting known as ‘first past the post’, ie. the person with the most votes is duly elected.

What is an electorate?
An electorate is all the people in a relevant category entitled to vote in an election.

What are regulatory probity requirements?
Regulatory probity requirements are evidenced by agreeing to the following if you are a successful candidate, ie. that you will:

  • Comply with the Victorian Public Sector Commission’s Directors’ Code of Conduct, University legislation and the University’s Governance Framework including the Council Charter;
  • Undertake the role for the benefit of the University, rather than as a representative of a stakeholder group;
  • Comply with all duties and rules including confidentiality obligations; and
  • Provide any declarations required.

What is the role of the returning officer?
The returning office is the official who conducts an election and announces the results.

What are statutory elections at the University?
Statutory elections are an election which the Vice-Chancellor or University Secretary has determined is an election to which the Election Regulation 2012 applies.


Where should I direct general election inquiries?
General election inquiries can be addressed to the returning officer at

Where should I direct specific inquiries relating to the University Council, Academic Senate, Swinburne Student Life, Faculty Student Consultative Committees or the UniSuper Consultative Committee?
Specific inquiries relating to these bodies can be addressed to the contacts listed on the Board Member Commitments page.