The results highlight the international excellence of the University’s research.

The REF is grouped into 36 broad subject areas for research known as Units of Assessment (UoA), with each UoA split into three assessment categories – Outputs, Impact and Environment. The University made submissions to nine UoA across all areas of its curriculum and almost doubled the number of staff submitted since the last research assessment exercise.

Overall the University saw its research recognised at ‘international’ standing in terms of its originality, significance and rigour. The University’s research Outputs were particularly highly rated, with more than half of the submissions being ranked at three to four star; with four star signifying ‘world-leading’ research.

In the area of ‘Communication, Cultural and Media Studies, Library and Information Management’ 100% of submissions were rated in the Impact category as being between three and four star. This confirms that the University makes a significant contribution to economic, social, cultural, health and public policy both internationally and within its local regions.

The University’s investment in 2012-13 in academic development saw over 30 early career researchers recruited, whose work the University anticipates will further enhance its standing in forthcoming assessments. With over 25% of the University’s REF submission coming from early career researchers, the University is extremely positive about its future research.

Professor Craig Mahoney, Principal and Vice-Chancellor of University of the West of Scotland, said: “These results give us a great platform on which to enhance and develop our research base and reflect the University’s strong position in the Scottish Higher Education sector. As a research informed, teaching-led modern university, achieving international ratings for our research is testament to the hard work and dedication of our academics and to the quality of their work.

“Our new corporate strategy outlines our commitment to ensuring that our research is developed and commercialised for the wider benefit of society. The University continues to invest strongly not just in its research staff, but also in its facilities to aid the ongoing expansion of research and teaching at UWS. An investment commitment of over £16million on infrastructure over the next few years will ensure UWS is placed to deliver teaching and research of the highest quality.”



University of the West of Scotland: ‘University’s internationally recognised research acknowledged in 2014 REF

Research Excellence Framework (REF) 2014