Research Excellence Framework 2014

The Research Excellence Framework (REF) is the UK’s system for assessing the quality of research in UK higher education institutions. 

98% of Surrey research is world leading, internationally excellent and internationally recognised*

The University made submissions to 15 of the 36 Units of Assessment (UoAs). 22 per cent of our research was judged as world leading (4*) and 56 per cent as internationally excellent (3*).

In the Times Higher Education Table of Excellence for REF2014, Surrey placed within the top 40 UK universities for our research power, with strong subject rankings for all three faculties, including Allied Heath, Physics, Electrical and Electronic Engineering, Sport and Exercise Sciences, Leisure and Tourism.  Overall, out of 128 submissions, we ranked 45th by ‘GPA’ (quality only) and 37th on Research Power (quality and size), in the analysis published by the Times Higher Education World Rankings.

Almost all areas of research saw improved results in terms of Grade Point Average since the Research Assessment Exercise (RAE) 2008.

Subject highlights

In subject-level rankings, the UoA allied health professions, dentistry, nursing and pharmacy, ranked 8th overall, and a further four UoAs were ranked in the top 20: electrical and electronic engineering, metallurgy and materials; economics and econometrics; sociology; and sport and exercise sciences, leisure and tourism. 

  • English Language and Literature recognised for 100% world leading and internationally excellent research environment,  
  • 93% of research assessed in the Allied Health submission was considered of 4* or 3* quality, placing the University of Surrey in the top 10 UK universities for Allied Health professions
  • Music, Media, Dance and Performing Arts achieved 100% world leading and internationally excellent impact
  • Hospitality and Tourism Management was recognised as having 100% world leading and internationally excellent research impact, with 60% being considered world leading
  • The Sociology department outputs received 77% world leading and international excellent ratings for their outputs, placing them 8th in the country for their subject-level output profile 

Full results

View the full results for the University of Surrey on the REF 2014 website.

* 22% world leading (4*), 56% internationally excellent (3*) and 20% recognised internationally