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Law School celebrates strong performance in REF2014

Press release issued: 18 December 2014

Law School celebrates strong performance in REF2014

Law School celebrates strong performance in REF2014

The Law School is delighted with its performance in REF2014, the results of which were published today. The REF (Research Excellence Framework) is a peer assessment of the quality and impact of research carried out at UK universities. The last assessment took place in 2008 and the next is expected to place in 2020.  

The results of the current exercise place us 9th in terms of GPA (3.25 in REF2014 compared to 2.60 in 2008) and 8th in terms of research power (GPA multiplied by the number of staff submitted).  85 % of our research was rated 3* (internationally excellent) or above with 41% rated 4* (world-leading). This is a significant step up from our previous ranking at 16th and puts us firmly within the top ten UK law schools. We scored highly across the range of research activities including research outputs, impact and environment, evidencing the strength of our research culture and the intellectual quality of our staff.  Of particular note is the inclusivity of our entry which comprised over 90% of eligible academic staff.  This contrasts with a number of other institutions who chose to be more selective in the staff they entered and allows us confidently to assert that our REF success accurately reflects the intellectual strengths of the School as a whole.  If, as is anticipated, some League Tables take the data on selectivity into account in compiling their rankings, the Law School expects its position to rise even further.

So what does this mean for students? First, it means that the UoB law students can be confident that they will are taught by high quality academics and that they enter an educational environment which is first-class and informed by top quality research. Second, it means more resourcing for the school. A key purpose of the REF is to ensure that public funding for research goes to those institutions and schools producing the very best research. Third, REF success promises huge reputational gains. It strengthens our League Table position as well as our capacity to recruit excellent staff and students in the future.

Commenting on the results, Professor Joanne Conaghan, Head of School, remarked: ‘This success is a testament to the hard work, dedication and commitment to excellence which is at the heart of the School’s ethos and academic culture’. Professor Tonia Novitz, who coordinated the School’s REF submission, observed ‘We are delighted to have our inclusive and supportive research community recognised alongside the significant and very concrete impact our research has achieved outside academia’.

Full information about the REF2014 outcomes can be found at:

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