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Times Higher Education’s analysis of REF 2021

Times Higher Education’s analysis of REF 2021 reinforces Royal Holloway’s reputation as a world-leading research-intensive university

  • Date12 May 2022

Times Higher Education’s analysis of REF 2021 reinforces Royal Holloway’s reputation as a world-leading research-intensive university.

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In Times Higher Education’s (THE) analysis and rankings of the Research Excellence Framework (REF) 2021 results, Royal Holloway, University of London, is ranked 15 in the UK for the overall quality of its research outputs; outputs measure the originality, significance and rigour of any form of research published.

Highlights from THE’s rankings of the REF 2021 results include:

  • Politics: Ranked 2 by THE for all research submitted by the department to REF 2021.
  • Music and Drama: Ranked 2 by THE for all research submitted by the departments to REF 2021.
  • Psychology: Ranked 3 by THE for all research submitted by the department to REF 2021.
  • Geography:
    • Ranked 5 by THE for all research submitted by the department to REF 2021.
    • Ranked 2 by THE for 4* research outputs.
  • Modern Languages and Linguistics: Ranked 5 by THE for all research submitted by the department to REF 2021.

Professor Paul Layzell, Principal of Royal Holloway, said: “The THE rankings indicate Royal Holloway’s position as a world-leading research-intensive university. I am pleased to see that the university is ranked by THE in the top 15 of the country for outputs, a position achieved as a result of strong 4* research outputs, which increased by 60% in REF 2021 compared to REF 2014.

“These results acknowledge the quality of the research carried out by our internationally renowned academics who have collaborated with colleagues across the globe in their quest to respond to complex challenges faced by individuals and humanity as a whole.

“As a university, we are committed to dual excellence in teaching and research, which means our students reap the benefits of being taught by academics who are leading researchers in their fields.

“I would like to thank our academics and their collaborators for their commitment to their research which, as these results show, is starting to make an impact across the world.”

The REF provides a robust and thorough assessment of the quality of universities’ research in all disciplines, providing accountability for public investment in research and demonstrating the benefits of that investment. The REF assessment is based on three criteria; outputs, impact and environment.

The THE ranking draws on the REF 2021 results and process the results to rank institutions according to the grade point average (GPA) score of overall quality profiles and excludes some specialist submissions.

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