Research

REF 2014

The School of Literatures, Languages and Cultures is pleased to announce its results for the 2014 Research Excellence Framework assessment.

REF 2014 logo

The School submitted to three of the available 36 Units of Assessment (UoA), English Literature, Modern Languages and Area Studies.

The units Modern Languages and Area Studies are two new assessment areas for 2014. Modern Languages include the activity undertaken by our European Languages and Celtic and Scottish Studies departments and Area Studies includes Asian Studies and Islamic and Middle Eastern Studies.

Asian Studies and Islamic and Middle Eastern Studies rank 9th in UK and 1st in Scotland based on the breadth and quality of their research. (*Research Fortnight Power Rank).

European Languages and Celtic & Scottish Studies are 11th in UK and 1st in Scotland based on the breadth and quality of their research. (*Research Fortnight Power Rank).

Area Studies (Asian Studies and Islamic and Middle Eastern Studies) saw 73% of the submission rated as World Leading (4*) and Internationally Excellent (3*). This puts Edinburgh at the top of the league in Area Studies in Scotland and reflects an improvement of 19% over our submissions for RAE2008. 74% of our publications were classified as World Leading and Internationally Excellent, an improvement of 22% over RAE2008. This is the best result in Scotland. 80% of our Research Environment was classified as World Leading and Internationally Excellent, an increase of 23% over RAE2008 and the best result in Scotland by number of people submitted.

The overall result for Modern Languages and Celtic and Scottish Studies saw 70% of our work rated World Leading (4*) and Internationally Excellent (3*), an improvement of 17% on our submissions for RAE2008. Our Research Environment was rated overall 100% World Leading and Internationally Excellent, comprising 60% 4* and 40% 3*, making us best in Scotland. This is a 20% improvement over RAE2008. 92% of our Research Impact was rated World Leading (58%) and Internationally Excellent (34%) , which put Edinburgh in the top 10 in the UK for Modern Language and Celtic departments, and was the best result in Scotland by number of people submitted.

80% of research in English Literature was classified World Leading (4*) and Internationally Excellent (3*), an improvement of 10% on the result for RAE 2008. 90% of the impact of that research was rated World Leading and Internationally Excellent, with the research environment being rated 100% World Leading and Internationally Excellent, ranking alongside that of the best research departments in the UK.

‘Our three submissions showcase the incredible quality, range and impact of our research into world literatures and cultures, and I would like to express my gratitude to all for their enthusiasm and hard work. Overall the School has performed to a high standard and is already looking forward to the next assessment scheduled for 2020. We are looking to building further on these results as we discover new ways of cross-disciplinary collaboration and wider cultural and social impact across our subject areas.

Professor Jeremy RobbinsHead of School

Research Excellence Framework

The REF is the new exercise developed by the four UK higher education funding bodies (HEFCs) and is the successor to the 2008 Research Assessment Exercise (RAE). 115 UK universities participated in the 2014 REF covering the work of 52,077 academics, over 191,000 research outputs and nearly 7,000 impact case studies.

www.ref.ac.uk

Impact

The 2014 REF was the first of its kind to ask institutions to demonstrate the impact of its research on the wider world. Impact has been described as ‘an effect on, change or benefit to the economy, society, culture, public policy or services, health, the environment or quality of life, beyond academia.’

The school submitted 12 case studies on the Impact of its research across all departments within the school, samples of these case studies can be found below: