Writing Aims & Objectives

Society Definition
“An open-for-all student group providing a specific activity for like-minded people”

Your society should provide an activity that is open to all members of the Students’ Union, and all members should be able to participate in the activity without restrictions.

A different society

You should not plan to start a new society with aims and objectives that are similar to - or the same as - those of a society already affiliated to the Students’ Union. 

To find out more about a society’s aims and objectives you can look at the society descriptions on the Students’ Union website or at existing constitutions, also available to download from the society page on the SU website. The Societies Executive Committee, as part of the affiliation procedure, will reject a proposed society with similar ideas or aims and objectives.

Society name

The name of your society should reflect the aims and objectives. When considering the society name you must keep in consideration that you are part of the Students’ Union and not actually linked directly to the University of Nottingham. (If you do wish to include the University’s name, then it must be referred to as ‘University of Nottingham’ and not Nottingham University).

It is recommended that you choose a descriptive name followed by ‘Society’ or ‘Soc’, e.g. Law Society or Band Soc. You need to use the same name on all publicity, when room booking and when describing the society. This is to avoid confusion among members, students and Students’ Union staff and Executives.


The society must have at least one aim. This aim should describe the intended purpose of the society, for example ‘To unite all members of the Students’ Union interested in line dancing’.


The objectives should reflect how you intend to achieve the society’s aim. For example, ‘To hold events to educate members about line dancing culture’ and/or ‘To provide line dancing training to all members’.

Socials as part of your aims & objectives

Planning socials should not be included in the aims and objectives. A society should be based around activities that are encompassed within the aims of the Students’ Union. Socials are a spin-off of people getting together to enjoy an activity and not the purpose of a society.

Membership fee

The membership fee to join the society should reflect the activities you will offer as a society, and members can request to see how their money has been spent. The recommended price is between £3 and £5.


Quorum is the fixed number of members that must be present at a society general meeting (AGM or EGM) to make proceedings valid. This can be set to suit the number of members in the society. The recommended quorum for a meeting is 20 full members (only full members can vote).

Job descriptions – optional officers

If extra committee positions are created they will need to have a job descriptions. Job descriptions will allow the role to have continuity between years and clearly define the officer's responsibilities.

Examples of extra job descriptions that you may wish to use are:

Vice President – Shall act in place of the President when the President is absent; shall assist the president in the day-to-day running of the society; shall provide assistance and advice to other committee members; shall complete tasks not necessarily covered by other roles of the committee; and shall prepare a written handover for their successor.

Social Secretary – Shall be responsible for the organisation and publicity of all social events of the society, and for informing members of forthcoming events; and shall prepare a written handover for their successor.

Changing the Society constitution

For advice on changing your constitution please see the Students’ Union Activities Officer. All new constitutions or amendments have to be handed into the Activities Officer for approval and also have to be passed by 2/­3rds of members at your Annual General Meeting.  The society constitution shall be subordinate to the Students’ Union Constitution and Regulations, meaning that society constitutions can be overruled by Students’ Union Policy and Constitution.

For more help please contact Angela Leein the Societies and Sports department.

Email: angela.lee@nottingham.ac.uk

Phone: 0115 8468785.


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