Selection Criteria

Nominations are now closed.   

Any athlete who fails to complete the online registration and submit the supporting hard-copy documentation by the deadline may not be considered for selection.

This process will necessitate your University physically stamping a template eligibility form, and this being posted to and received by BUCS by the stated deadline. 


  • Selections will take place straight after the BUCS Cross Country Championships on Saturday 1 February 2020.
  • Selected athletes will be notified by phone or email by Monday 3 February 2020
  • Team announced by Wednesday 5 February 2020.

Athletes Cost

It is anticipated that event costs will be around £750 per athlete based on known costs at this time. In the unlikely event that any unforeseen additional costs arise we will notify you as soon as possible. Students at non - BUCS Member institutions must pay an additional supplement of £200.
The balance of the event costs will be paid by the Home Nation Governing Bodies. 
Payment of the above amount will be required in full at the point of selection. Athletes submitting a nomination acknowledge this requirement by indicating their acceptance of the Team Member’s Agreement. Furthermore, they accept that any unrecoverable costs incurred by BUCS resulting from athlete withdrawal from the nomination process will be passed onto the athlete concerned. 
Athletes should speak to their institution in the first instance to see if their institution is able to assist with coverage of the costs. 

Eligibility Criteria

The following criteria are required to be met:

  • Students who are currently officially registered as proceeding towards a Level 4 qualification (on the Framework for Higher Education Qualifications in England, Wales and Northern Ireland) or equivalent or above*  
  • Be a national of the country they represent (therefore hold a full 10 year UK passport) and be eligible to compete for Great Britain
  • Be at least 18 and no older than 25 years of age on 31 December of the year of the event (i.e. born between 01/01/1995 and 31/12/2002). 

*Students graduating in 2019 will be eligible to compete in 2020, as former students who have obtained their qualification in the calendar year preceding the event.  

Any athlete who is currently suspended or expelled by FISU, WADA, International or National Federation is ineligible for selection.

Sports Criteria

The team for the event will consist of up to six male and up to six female athletes. However only four (4) male and four (4) female athletes are allowed to compete on the day in the individual races which are 10km each. The other two (2) female and two (2) male athletes will compete in the relay event.

Relay: Two (2) women and two (2) men compete in the following order: W,M,W,M. The first two athletes of each team will compete over two laps and the last two over one lap. It means the first woman and the first man will run approximately 4km and the other two will run approximately 2km each. Total distance 6 course laps, approximately 12km

This policy has been structured to select a team with the following aims:  

  • Medal success at the 2020 World University Cross-Country Championships and;
  • Opportunities for developing athletes with the potential for future success at senior outdoor major championships (including future Cross-Country championships). 


The Official Trial (“the Trials”) for this competition will be the BUCS Cross-Country Championships which take place on Saturday 1 February 2020 at Holyrood Park, Edinburgh. Discretionary places may be available for those not able to compete in this event due to:

  • Injury/illness (supporting documentation from medical team may be requested)
  • Graduation in 2019
  • Studying at a non-BUCS member institution/overseas 


The selection process will be as follows:

  1. Eligible senior athletes who finish in the top three at the Trials** will be automatically selected for the senior race if they have met the selection criteria (see point 4 below) before the trial date. For the avoidance of doubt, if any of the top three at the Trials decline selection (through injury or any other reason), their automatic selection will NOT be offered to the next eligible athlete at the trials. Their place will be re-allocated based on point 2 below. 

    ** For male athletes this applies to the A Race/Long Race.  
  2. The Selection Panel may select athletes to fill the remaining team spots based on remaining eligible athletes’ form, fitness and competition history up to and including 1 February 2020. 
  3. Relay selection will be based on current cross country or indoor or road form. Athletes must compete at the BUCS cross country event on 1st February (long or short course) to be eligible for selection in the relay team.
  4. The selection panel may select up to two non-travelling reserves for each of the male and female teams who may be added to the relevant team should an athlete withdraw prior to the final entry date, each subject to minimum standards and overriding objectives. Non-travelling reserve places will be selected based on remaining eligible athletes’ form, fitness and competition history up to and including 1 February 2020. 
  5. Selection performance criteria. These are the minimum standards for selection criteria that will be considered for individual team places: 
  • 5k Men: 14:40
  • 5k Women: 16:40 
  • 10k Men: 30:30 
  • 10k Women: 34:30
  • 10 Miles Men: 50:15 
  • 10 Miles Women: 56:50 
  • Half Marathon Men: 1:07:00
  • Half Marathon Women: 1:16:00
  • Marathon Men: 2:22:00
  • Marathon Women: 2:39:00

For athletes who have not posted a road time in the relevant selection timescale the selection panel at their sole discretion will take into account cross - country form, fitness and competition history up to and including 1 February 20 20 . 

The team will travel to the Championships as a single team, departing from a UK based airport. Athletes not based in the UK will be required to cover the cost of their own travel to/from the UK. 

All questions related to the selection policy (including those relating to athletes based overseas) and the trial race should be directed to Spencer Duval at 

Athletes are reminded that this is a national representative opportunity , and they should have realistic aspirations to represent their country at a performance level. Please do NOT submit a speculative nomination if you do not meet the above criteria. If in doubt, please contact Spencer Duval
 before submitting a nomination . 

Selection Panel

The selection panel will have representatives from the Home Country National Governing Bodies and BUCS. 
England: Spencer Duval (Chair and casting vote if needed)
Scotland: Mark Pollard 
Wales: Adrian Palmer
Northern Ireland: Jackie Newton


No appeals will be permitted. The decision of the Selection Panel is final. If however, you feel that your nomination has not been fairly considered you are entitled to raise any concerns to BUCS and for them to be heard independently. 

Appendix 1 - Eligibility for World University Competition 2020

FISU Eligibility Regulations

Only the competitors who satisfy the following conditions may take part in a FISU events:

  • students who are currently officially registered as proceeding towards a degree or diploma at the university or similar institute, the status of which is recognised by the appropriate national academic authority of their country (e.g. the Department for Education in the UK); or former students of the institutions mentioned before, who have obtained their academic degree or diploma in the calendar year preceding the event
  • be a national of the country they represent (i.e. hold a full 10 year passport)
  • be at least 18 and no older than 25 years of age on 31 December of the year of the event

Students studying abroad are eligible for selection provided they satisfy the above criteria.

Students attending courses franchised out from a registered institution providing the also conform to the additional eligibility criteria.

BUCS Academic Eligibility Regulations

The minimum level of study has been set at Level 4 of the Framework for Higher Education Qualifications in England, Wales and Northern Ireland, or equivalent. Level 4 is equivalent to Higher National Certificates (HNC) and Certificates of Higher Education (CertHE). In Scotland this is generally equivalent to Level 7. Please contact BUCS with any queries.

Exemptions to permit the selection of student athletes studying below Level 4 can be considered where:

  1. The student still meets the FISU eligibility regulations
  2. There is no direct financial implication to BUCS
  3. It can be demonstrated that this inclusion encourages additional benefit to Level 4 students

The inclusion of students studying below Level 4 should not be at the expense of a student studying at Level 4 or above.