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REF 2014

The Research Excellence Framework (REF), the system for assessing research in UK higher education institutions (HEIs), has rated 72% of the research outputs submitted by Stranmillis University College as being ‘internationally recognised' through to 'internationally excellent' in standard.

The REF rates the research submitted in terms of its originality, significance and rigour. The College was among 76 entrants in Education judged against a world class standard. Of the work submitted, 20% was rated as 4* (of world leading standard), 24% was rated as 3* (internationally excellent), 28% was rated as 2* (internationally recognised), and 28% was rated as 1* (nationally recognised). There were no unclassified submissions.

In rankings of the REF results carried out by the Times Higher Educational Supplement, Stranmillis came 31st out of the 76 Education entries when judged on its output. This is a significant accomplishment given the relative size of the College.  When output was compared with institutions who submitted to REF in one subject only, Stranmillis came 11th out of 26. On overall rating Stranmillis also improved its position with respect to the previous Research Assessment Exercise (RAE) in 2008.

The Research Excellence Framework was conducted jointly by the Higher Education Funding Council for England (HEFCE), the Scottish Funding Council (SFC), the Higher Education Funding Council for Wales (HEFCW) and the Department for Employment and Learning, Northern Ireland (DEL).

For more information on the REF, go to


REF 2014 Code of Practice