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Gold award marks the University of Surrey as an ‘outstanding’ institution

The University of Surrey has received a prestigious Gold award in the first-ever Teaching Excellence Framework (TEF).

The University was commended as outstanding by the national TEF panel for stretching and supporting students through rigorous course design and assessment, and for delivering academic provision which is innovative, personalised and well-resourced.

It particularly highlighted the emphasis given to effectively embedding professional training in programmes, and to the ways in which the outstanding research expertise of staff helps to shape curricula and develop students’ critical and analytical skills. 

The success of students was recognised to be excellent, with students from all backgrounds achieving consistently outstanding results and significant proportions progressing to highly skilled employment or further study.

Professor Max Lu, President and Vice-Chancellor, said:

This is a wonderful recognition of our world-class education programmes, teaching quality and exceptional student experience. It is a reinforcement of Surrey’s widely acknowledged position as a leader in UK higher education. 

"The award is a resounding tribute to the tremendous talent and hard work of all our staff, and thanks also go to our students, alumni and the broader community for their partnership and support, which is what it takes to build a great university."

Professor Jane Powell, Vice-Provost of Education and Students, said:

This is a pleasing recognition of Surrey’s longstanding ethos of working with our students to put their learning experience, personal development and future career opportunities at the heart of our approach to education.

“Surrey students are talented and ambitious: they come from all over the world and from diverse backgrounds, and they are very effective in bringing their varied perspectives to shaping the design and delivery of our courses, to participating in decisions about support and resources, and to defining the character of our academic community.”

“The TEF panel highlighted our University-wide commitment to developing pedagogical expertise, skills and knowledge, exemplified by nationally-funded projects. It also commended Surrey’s practice of systematically embedding professional skills and employability throughout our curricula, and the many ways in which our students are not only stretched but supported to succeed.”


A Gold award in the Teaching Excellence Framework tops off an already fantastic year for the University of Surrey. In February, a new £12.5 million Innovation for Health building was opened, equipped with state-of-the-art research and teaching facilities, and showcasing the University’s vision for integrating healthcare and technology which will help change the delivery of healthcare in the UK.

The 5G Innovation Centre is a world leader in the development of the next generation of mobile and wireless communications. Bringing together leading academic expertise and key industry partners in a shared vision, the centre will help to define and develop the 5G infrastructure that will underpin the way we communicate, work and live our everyday lives in the future.

A few weeks ago, a hugely successful Festival of Wonder attracted around 6,000 members of the community and alumni to enjoy a wonderful array of talks, demonstrations, shows and entertainment programmes on campus, as part of a year-long celebration of the University’s 50th anniversary.