08 April 2022

Abertay achieves QAA's highest rating for academic standards and teaching quality

Independent quality body QAA commends Abertay's academic standards and student learning experience

Students in discussion

Abertay University has ‘fully effective arrangements for managing academic standards and the student learning experience’, according to a new review conducted by QAA, the UK’s independent higher education quality body. The review commended the University’s achievements in several areas including student partnership and the creation of an inclusive and accessible learning environment.

The review was undertaken by a team of six independent reviewers, who were appointed by QAA. The review took place through a Planning Visit in October 2021, followed by a Review Visit in November and December 2021. Its commendations included:


Professor Liz Bacon, Deputy Principal and Deputy Vice-Chancellor at Abertay University said:

“We are delighted to have achieved the QAA’s highest rating for effectiveness following this important ELIR process. This outstanding result is testament to the dedication, professionalism and commitment to excellence shown by the University’s talented colleagues, students, leadership team and partner institutions, and reflects our ethos of placing the student experience and strong academic standards at the heart of all we do. Treating students as our partners is the key element of our approach - particularly as an institution with a focus on widening access - and we will continue to work collaboratively across the University in this way as we seek to make further improvements in the years ahead.”

QAA's approach is an Enhancement-Led Institutional Review (ELIR). ELIR focuses on the enhancement of the student learning experience and examines how institutions maintain academic standards. ELIR is an important component of the Quality Enhancement Framework for Scottish higher education. There are three categories of effectiveness for ELIR judgements: fully effective, limited effectiveness and not effective. Abertay has achieved the highest rating available through the ELIR process.

QAA’s report also makes a number of recommendations, including asking the University to:

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