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Top Marks for Bath Spa – Bath Spa University

Top marks for Bath Spa University


Top marks for Bath Spa University

Thursday, 12 May, 2022

Bath Spa University has achieved its best ever results in the Research Excellence Framework (REF), the UK-wide programme which assesses the quality and impact of academic research, and which takes place every six or seven years.

Since the previous assessment in 2014, the amount of research achieving the highest status of ‘world-leading’ has increased by 60% overall and 130% for research impact.

Research in English and Creative Writing scored extremely well, with more than four-fifths (84%) of research in this area deemed ‘world-leading’ (4*) or ‘internationally excellent’ (3*), the two highest distinctions.

Culture, Communication and Media also performed very strongly, with more than three-quarters (78%) of the research submitted achieving 4* or 3*.

Other subject areas that performed particularly well were Education (60% 4* and 3*), Art and Design (56% 4* and 3*), Business and Management (53% 4* and 3*), and History (58% 4* and 3*).

Geography and Environment, and Music and Performing Arts also had a strong showing with almost half (47%) of research in this field achieving 4* or 3* status.

Collectively, 58% of the research submitted was ranked 4* or 3*, up from 51% in 2014.

Highlights of the research submitted include an app to improve the wellbeing of social workers, a whole-school approach to supporting disadvantaged learners, using a unique form of illustration of sports events to engage marginalised groups, assessing the effect of video games on users, and using emerging digital media technologies in publishing and theatre sectors .

Vice-Chancellor Professor Sue Rigby said:

“I’m extremely proud of these strong results which reflect many years of hard work by colleagues across the University. Our distinctive, practice-based approach to research draws together disciplines that boost the quality of our work and enhance our global relevance and impact.”

Professor John Strachan, Pro Vice-Chancellor for Research and Enterprise, added:

“From informing national policy and practice to helping raise awareness and challenge preconceptions about marginalised groups, our research has always had a positive and real-world impact and it is an honour to see that recognised in this prestigious assessment.”

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