The Teaching Excellence Framework is a government initiative designed to assess the quality of teaching at universities to provide clear information to students about the best institutions.

Click on the links to find out more, or keep up to date with our current news and events below.

Latest News


NEWS November 2016

#TalkTEFWithJeff sessions and the Green Paper consultation


NEWS November 2016

At the start of the month at Keele, a 'Green Paper' style questionnaire was sent around faculties. This questionnaire asked staff to provide examples of Keele's excellent teaching quality and the responses will be fed into the TEF submission which is due in January. Whilst this iteration of the TEF is mainly focussed on Institution-wide levels of teaching quality, it is still crucial that we receive as much information as possible from those who work closest with teaching activities.

Students have also been involved in the TEF submission as Jeff Wiltshire, SU education officer has run his #TalkTEFwithJeff sessions. These sessions introduced students to the idea of TEF and provided them with the opportunity to express their opinion about the topic. The awareness campaign included a series of information stalls and focus groups; now finished, the responses from the students will be reviewed, engagement will be investigated and a new course of action will be taken.  The aim of the sessions was to get feedback from those who are most affected by Keele's teaching quality - the students- and to find out what Keele's teaching is really like. The feedback from these sessions will also go into the TEF submission and may have a significant effect on Keele's TEF outcome.

The TEF Steering Group are meeting again on the 28th November to discuss our first draft submission. Here the group will provide feedback and edit the submission before it is released as a ‘white’ paper to staff in December for its second round of consultation.

A copy of the Green Paper, sent out to staff on the 31st October, is available on the Documents section of the TEF webpages

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NEWS October 27th 2016

Fiona Cownie and Jeff Wiltshire to attend HEFCE event


NEWS October 27th 2016

Our Chair, Fiona Cownie, and Jeff Wiltshire, the SU's Education Officer are to attend a national conference on Learning Gain. The conference is run by the Higher Education Funding Council for England (HEFCE) on the 10th November 2016. The event revolves around the idea of Learning Gain and what it is, where HEFCE attempts to define and quantify it as a measurable metric. This is important as the TEF pays particular focus to Learning Gain and so it is vital that we recieve as much information as possible regarding it, so we can include it correctly in our TEF submission this January.

In other news, the TEF Steering Group held another meeting on the 26th October to further discuss consultation events before the submission. A 'Green Paper' style questionaire will soon be sent around university staff so that they can make their thoughts known about Keele's excellent teaching quality, which will then feed directly into Keele's TEF submission. Students will also get a say, as Jeff Wilshire is holding several TEF consultation events through the Students' Union allowing students to learn more about the TEF and what it means for them. For more information on student events, please contact Jeff directly.


NEWS October 2016

The Higher Education White Paper: What it means for your institution


NEWS October 2016

Last week (11th October) the Chair of the TEF steering group, Fiona Cownie, attended a conference in London. This conference was titled ‘The Higher Education White Paper: what it means for you’ and was run by Universities UK. The Higher Education White Paper, ‘Success as a Knowledge Economy: Teaching Excellence, Social Mobility and Student Choice’ was released in May 2016 and highlighted many key changes in the Higher Education System, including the creation of a new Office for Students and the implementation of the Teaching Excellence Framework (TEF). The focus of the conference was to ‘explore [these] changes and what they mean for your institution’ (UUK, 2016).

The talks given ranged around the TEF and the HE Bill which is currently going through the third committee stage in the house of commons. The talks tried to answer some questions regarding the implementation of these new schemes and allowed time for delegates to ask questions and provide feedback.

Speakers who attended were Chris Hale, the director of policy at UUK; Polly Payne and Stephen Jones from the Department for Education; Sorana Vieru, Vice President for Higher Education from the Nation Union of Students (NUS); Rebecca Endean from the Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy (BIES); David Sweeney and Chris Millward from HEFCE; and several university representatives. Over 140 delegates were expected to attend the event, from a range of institutions.

With regards to the TEF, there was talks around the design and the specifications in the TEF year 2 frameworks and how they will be implemented. There was a lot of information regarding the type of evidence a university needs to provide in their submissions and how the TEF will effect teaching and learning practice.

For more information on the conference please visit

For access to the presentation slides from the whole conference please click here to go to our documents page.