Subject-Level TEF Announced

13 Mar 2018

Universities Minister Sam Gyimah has this week announced plans to rate university courses in England as either gold, silver or bronze by subject area. He claims that in this way teaching excellence will be rewarded and poor quality teaching will be exposed under a new rating system for English universities that aims to account for the quality of their teaching, learning environment and graduate outcomes.

By extending the Teaching Excellence and Student Outcomes Framework – or TEF – to subject level the government aims to:

  • help prospective students compare the different courses on offer across institutions, to make sure they get the most out of their university education;
  • shine a light on course quality, revealing which universities are providing excellent teaching, and which are coasting or relying on their research reputation.

The Department for Education has launched a 10-week public consultation, seeking views on the design of the new framework. 

This new framework recognises that outcomes and teaching quality differ not just by university but also by course, and will allow students to look behind provider-level ratings and access information about teaching quality for a specific subject.

This will take into account student feedback, drop-out rates and graduate outcomes and will aim to ensure that students get the value for money they deserve from higher education.

Universities Minister, Sam Gyimah said:

"Prospective students deserve to know which courses deliver great teaching and great outcomes – and which ones are lagging behind.

In the age of the student, universities will no longer be able to hide if their teaching quality is not up to the world-class standard that we expect.

The new subject-level TEF will give students more information than ever before, allowing them to drill down and compare universities by subject. This will level the international playing field to help applicants make better choices, and ensure that more students get the value for money they deserve from higher education."

The Minister will also launch an Open Data competition, the first of its kind in the UK HE sector, which will use selected government data on universities so that tech companies and coders can create apps to help prospective students decide where to apply.

The consultation is looking to get comments from students, providers, employers and sector bodies.

The consultation is now open for comments until 21 May 2018. Find more details here


Stuart Brown
Media and Content Manager

Partners and Accreditations

Get In Touch

  • London School of Business and Management
  • 1 Malet Street, London, WC1E 7JN.