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Studying in autumn 2020 during coronavirus

Research Excellence Framework (REF)

REF 2021

The Research Excellence Framework (REF) is the UK’s system for assessing the quality of research in UK Higher Education Institutions (HEIs). The last exercise took place in 2014, the next will be taking place during 2021 with the results expected in April 2022. The results of REF 2021 will report on the quality of our research and will inform the selective allocation of funding for research.

Three distinct elements are assessed: the quality of outputs (e.g. publications, performances, and exhibitions), their impact beyond academia, and the environment that supports research. These will be grouped under a number of Units of Assessment (UoAs) from an available list of 34 specialisations.

The University will be entering all eligible staff to REF2021, building on the success of and strengths of our REF 2014 submission (see below).

Further details of our preparations for REF2021 can be found on the staff intranet (visible to Middlesex staff only), including our Code of Practice which sets out our decision-making processes for the fair and transparent selection of staff and associated outputs in the context of the principles of equality and diversity, and all relevant legislation.

Headline REF 2014 results

The Research Excellence Framework (REF) ranked Middlesex:

  • Close to the top third for research power across the entire sector
  • The best modern university in London for research power
  • 58% of research classed as world-leading and internationally excellent
  • In top 20 across all creative industries research disciplines
  • 4th in the UK for Social Work and Social Policy.

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