Staff at the University of Bedfordshire could be part of a nationwide strike involving 30,000 people across the UK.
Support staff are being balloted by trade union UNISON after more than two-thirds of UK staff rejected offers on pay and pensions during the summer.
The pay deal from university employers would mean a below-inflation rise of just 1.8 per cent for most staff despite vice-chancellors enjoying six-figure salaries.
UNISON head of education Jon Richards said: “Yet again university employers are fobbing off higher education staff with a below-inflation wage increase.
“Vice-chancellors’ and other senior managers’ pay packets continue to swell. But they won’t stump up for all the other staff who make universities world class, despite being pushed hard for a decent pay rise.
“Their mediocre offer will do nothing to help staff, especially the lowest paid who are struggling to get by on poverty wages.”