More Than 600 University Staff Members In The UK Earn Over £200,000

The salaries of members of staff in Higher Education were revealed this week in a huge freedom of information request from The Tax Payers’ Alliance and the Daily Mail. It exposed that some salaries are as high as £650,000, raising questions about the value for money students are getting at university.

University of Oxford has some of the highest staff salaries, with 622 employees earning over £100,000; 66 taking over £200,000; and 11 earning more than £300,000 a year. 

Many were quick to defend the wages of HE staff, stating that in order to attract the best talent you need to offer a competitive figure.

But it was the salaries of certain Vice Chancellors that caused the most outrage. 

Nottingham Trent Vice Chancellor earns £623,000, while the former VC of London Met – a university that consistently falls at the bottom of university league tables – earned £618,000.

We spoke to Sarah, a former Nottingham Trent student, who said, “The work the VC has completed at Trent should certainly not be put into disrepute because his salary has now been revealed. However, this comes at a sensitive time in education as students are asked to pay considerably more just to attend university. As a student who received an education from Trent, I ask why is he being paid more than double the wage of others doing the exact same role at other universities in the UK?”



The University and College Union, the largest trade union for academic staff in further and higher education, spoke to the Guardian about the revelations. 

Sally Hunt, general secretary of UCU said: “…the salaries and benefits of vice-chancellors are completely out of control, especially when compared with the pay settlements given to university staff who have seen their pay cut substantially in real terms since 2009,”

Meanwhile, Vice President of NUS, Sorana Vieru, spoke of how it was unfair for VCs to take home such high salaries when students are graduating with more debt than ever before thanks to raised tuition fees and spiralling costs of living.

Overall there were 91 staff members – mostly professors and VCs – earning at least £300,000. 

This all follows last week’s new green paper on higher education, which suggested that universities could be exempt from freedom of information requests in future.

A complete Excel document of the salaries is free to download here.