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Oxford SU

There are 22,000 students at Oxford University represented by one of 38 Colleges. Despite each student being a member of Oxford SU, the union has never been able to identify its place within the University’s structure and as a result its relevance has become lost and confused over time.

Our brief was twofold. Firstly to give Oxford SU a brave and recognisable voice within the University, whilst shaking off any inherited perceptions. Secondly, enabling the union to communicate it’s benefits and activities to both the student and staff population while remaining friendly, fun and personal – something which offers a stark contrast to the University as a whole.


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  • Identity
  • Print

We ran an extensive consultation programme involving a variety of students and staff from a wide range of departments and external bodies. This approach gathered wide-ranging opinions, enabling insights to be gathered and distilled into a brand narrative. An inspirational story that helps Oxford SU to convey its raison d’être in a truly compelling way.

The name OUSU was deemed to be confusing, especially as the renowned debating society is called ‘The Union’. In collaboration, we tested some new names with Oxford SU being the winner – a no-nonsense, direct approach that people could instantly understand.

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Oxford SU devotes itself entirely to the wants and needs of students, current and future. Oxford SU is committed to fighting for students every step of the way. Only Oxford SU embraces the entire student experience, from the grandly institutional to the intensely personal.

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This refreshed purpose, gave weight to a visual and verbal brand that demonstrated the many facets of activity ranging from fun, ‘studenty’ activities for undergraduates to the more professional, corporate based communications for postgraduates, staff and the wider university community.

“Spy Studio have created a personality in Oxford SU that is fun and open while remaining positive and trustworthy.  Their commitment and deft approach ensured we shook any negativity off and replaced it with a bold, expressive identity that truly communicates the energies and incredible work of this students’ union.”

Ryan Bird – Chief Executive, Oxford SU

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