The Subject TEF (S-TEF) pilot allowed the University to test the S-TEF method being used by the Office for Students (OfS). S-TEF involved a judgement on the quality of teaching, learning and student outcomes by panels established by the OfS, resulting in mock Gold, Silver or Bronze ratings for each of 23 TEF Subject areas and for the University as a whole.
The pilot involved the production of 5-page written submissions outlining evidence for the quality of provision for each TEF Subject area, in addition to a 15-page submission at provider level. Each submission required reflection on results for nine core metrics provided by the OfS and the production of additional qualitative and quantitative evidence. Departments were provided with central support and input from Academic Support Office, Careers and Placements and the Library to help this process, which also involved close collaboration with student representatives.
The project allowed the University to practice and learn from the method in advance of what was at the time a planned roll-out of S-TEF for real in 2020. The process also provided an opportunity to reflect on provision, including using benchmarked data that was otherwise not available to the University. Key learning points included the importance of evidencing the impact of learning and teaching initiatives and a focus on equity of outcomes across different groups. As a participant in the pilot, the University also provided extensive feedback to the Office for Students on the challenges of the method in order to help refine it.
Results were confidential to the institution and will not be published, but were broadly positive for York. Reflection on S-TEF data and results was taken forward into the APR process for 2018/19 and into central planning.
The project ran from November 2018 to March 2019, with results released in July 2019.
Dr David Gent
Faculty Learning Enhancement Project Manager (Arts and Humanities)