Document Details

Title The UK’s Teaching Excellence Framework – political tool or effective means to enhance teaching and learning?
Author Carolyn Walker - Academic Director, INTO at the University of Exeter, Observatory Associate


On 1st July this year, Jo Johnson, the United Kingdom’s newly appointed Minister of State for Universities and Science in Prime Minister David Cameron’s post-May election Conservative government, gave his second speech on the subject of higher education, announcing a Green paper for the autumn. He was addressing Universities UK (UUK) – the organisation of the UK’s Vice-chancellors.

It would have come as no surprise that the main theme of his talk centred on a Teaching Excellence Framework (TEF) for universities since it was in the Conservative party’s election manifesto. Mr Johnson’s agenda is to “stimulate a diverse HE market” and to increase competition in order to “drive up standards” and “value for money for students and taxpayers”. He assumed the point of view of the consumers of higher education, in other words students (who face some of the highest tuition fees in the world – in 2013 the average was £8,507 p.a) and employers, concluding that:

“Those institutions that can demonstrate that they excel in teaching and in supporting all students – including those from disadvantaged backgrounds – through university into graduate jobs will reap rewards.”

He gave an update on 9th September at the University of Surrey, which mainly reiterated the initial material.

So why the need for such a framework?

Date 02/10/2015
Region(s) Europe
Countries United Kingdom
Theme(s) Regulatory Frameworks

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