University staff in Cumbria and the South of Scotland have begun a two-day strike, in a dispute over pay and conditions.
Members of the University and College Union are walking out across the UK today and tomorrow.
Universities say they're making every effort to minimise the impact on students.
The union has dismissed a pay offer of just over one percent, branding it "insulting".
Heriot - Watt has been voted the best university in Scotland for the second year in a row.
The institution, which includes the School of Textiles and Design in Galashiels, was given the honour in the Sunday Times University Guide.
Principal Steve Chapman said:
"At Heriot-Watt, we put great effort into exceptional student experience by striving to consistently deliver excellent facilities, teaching, and support services.
"These positive results represent a real strength of feeling among our students and real professionalism on the part of the staff."
It was also named as being the best for student experience in the UK and ranked fourth best in the UK.
Students have also awarded the university the title of Scotland's best in the National Student Survey.
Hundreds of students could return to Ambleside in the coming years as plans for the previously mothballed campus go on display. But there's opposition about the placement of student housing next to an existing housing estate. But many local businesses have welcomed the return of students.
University and College Union bosses are meeting with textile department staff in Galashiels today to discuss potential job cuts.
Heriot-Watt University revealed proposals for a shake up of staff and jobs earlier this week.
The cost cutting proposals include getting rid of a quarter of staff members from the Textile department at Heriot-Watt University's Galashiels based campus.