Scots universities are involved in "world-leading" research with Edinburgh University topping Scotland's universities for the quality of its research, according to a report just published.
The results of the Research Assessment Exercise (RAE), which assesses the quality of research in universities across the UK, include the views of international experts in all the main subject areas.
"Although we cannot make a direct comparison with the previous exercise carried out in 2001, we can be confident that the results are consistent with other benchmarks indicating that the UK holds second place globally to the US in significant subject fields," said Professor David Eastwood, Chief Executive of the HEFCE.
What's the score?
Submissions from across the UK were rated using a four star system:
- 4 stars: Quality that is world-leading in terms of originality, significance and rigour
- 3 stars: Quality that is internationally excellent in terms of originality,
significance and rigour but which nonetheless falls short of the
highest standards of excellence
- 2 stars: Quality that is recognised internationally in terms of originality, significance and rigour
- 1 star: Quality that is recognised nationally in terms of originality, significance and rigour
- Unclassified: Quality that falls below the standard of nationally recognised work. Or
work which does not meet the published definition of research for the
purposes of this assessment
Edinburgh University scored highly in the 4 star and 3 star categories in areas such as Hospital Based Clinical Subjects (40% and 40%), English Language and Literature (40% and 30%), Computer Science and Infomatics (35% and 50%), Earth Systems and Environmental Sciences (15% and 55%).
In a joint submission with Edinburgh College of Art, Edinburgh University also rated well for its research in Architecture and the Built Environment (25% and 40%) and in a joint submission with Heriot Watt University rated well for Pure Mathematics (25% and 45%).