The University is an exempt charity within the meaning of Schedule 3 of the Charities Act 2011 and is therefore exempt from registration with the Charities Commission. On 1 April 2018, the Office for Students became the principal regulator for those higher education institutions that are exempt charities.
Aston University received its Royal Charter from Queen Elizabeth II on 22 April 1966.
The governance structure of the University is laid down in its Charter and Statutes from which both Council and Senate derive their powers.
Council and Senate
The Council is Aston's governing body, with ultimate responsibility for the affairs of the University. The Council is currently chaired by Aston's Pro-Chancellor, Dame Yve Buckland, DBE. The Council has approved a Scheme of Delegation which identifies the powers and responsibilities of Council and how these are delegated, primarily to its committees, the Executive, and the Senate and its sub-committees.
The Senate is responsible for the governance of all academic matters, subject to the powers of Council. It has overall responsibility for academic quality and standards and is chaired by the Vice-Chancellor and Chief Executive.
The Council and/or Senate have approved Ordinances and Regulations which provide direction and guidance for the operation of all areas of the University. The Council and Senate have also established a number of Committees with delegated authority to undertake detailed work on their behalf.
Vice-Chancellor and Chief Executive
The University is led by the Vice-Chancellor and Chief Executive, Professor Alec Cameron, who chairs the University Executive which is responsible for the day-to-day running of the University and the five academic Schools.
The Convocation is the body through which the University maintains influential contact with the wider community. It meets annually and its membership includes the University Council, Officers, academic staff, representatives of Students’ Union and Aston graduates, together with representatives of a wide range of external bodies. The Convocation typically receives presentations on the work of the University.
The Convocation is chaired by Aston's Chancellor, Sir John Sunderland.
The Convocation appoints the Chancellor on the joint recommendation of the Council and the Senate.