Teaching Excellence and Student Outcomes

April 27, 2021

TEF university ratings explained

Teaching Excellence and Student Outcomes Framework (TEF) is a national university rating system of the United Kingdom to assess the standards and education quality of the universities and colleges. The system is designed to maintain the excellence of the institutes and help students to choose the right institutes for them.

More than 300 registered institutes in the United Kingdom are assessed through the TEF system and they are ranked according to their teaching and learning standards. The TEF ranks these universities and colleges into four categories gold, silver, bronze and provisional.

  • Gold – Gold is the highest rating, which is awarded to those institutes that deliver consistent outstanding teaching and learning standards for the students.
  • Silver – Silver rating is awarded to those institutes that consistently maintain the national quality requirements for UK higher education. The Silver rated institutes are below the gold institutes.
  • Bronze – Bronze rating is awarded to those institutes that deliver quality teaching, and learning standards for its students but they don’t maintain the consistency of standards for silver and gold rating.
  • Provisional – Relatively new institutes are awarded with provisional rating if the institution meets the national quality requirements.

Atmosphere and Social life

The universities have their own unique atmosphere, culture and social life. The social life and culture of the universities play a very important role for students. In the United Kingdom, some universities have a reputation of promoting social interaction but other famous universities like Oxford University and Cambridge are famous for their conservative and traditional atmosphere.

  • If you enjoy a social life then you should consider a university that facilitates socializing. There are many universities that allow society to work and organize different social events.
  • If you have a hobby or you love sports that you wish to continue while studying at the university, then you will have to make sure to select a university, which supports your interest.
  • You can get the true insight of the university by attending different events organized by universities or with the help of student’s associations.
  • You should also consult the lists of societies and clubs that a university offers for their students.

Take a look at this great video created by Cambridge University aptly named the “Cambridge Grand Challenges Initiative”

University facilities

Choosing a university with more opportunities and facilities, will help you to create a great atmosphere for learning and socializing. Most of the universities in the UK offer all the main facilities for their students, but even then you should make sure to choose the most relevant university with maximum facilities. For example if you need some special assistance due to any disability, then make sure that your prospective university offers these special assistance for you.

  • Your selected university should have an effective transportation facility for the students at reasonable charges.
  • A standard university should support all the sports activities and facilitate their students with sports events.
  • The university should have an affordable accommodation facility for the students.  In the UK, universities offer accommodation with different prices and quality according to their location.
  • A standard university should offer their students the career services that help the students for finding internships and part time jobs to earn extra money.

Financial Implication and Funding Opportunities

Unfortunately, finance can be a barrier to your dream of getting a higher education. Lack of research and planning can cost you thousands of pounds. Most of the potential applicants for the UK’s universities, tuition fee is the most important factor to make their decision. Listen to the TEDX Bath teams top TEDX talks here.

Getting a higher education in the UK comes at a very high price. In the UK, you will find many universities with different tuition fees and other expenses, and to a certain level, you can get an affordable study destination for you. It is not recommended to look for the cheapest options available in the country, but there are many other funding options to explore in the UK.

  • There are many financial support opportunities available in the country to help fund the studies, including scholarships, grants, fellowships and loans.
  • Many universities also offer their own financial assistance for their students on merit basis. For further detail, you can explore the websites of different universities.
  • There are Country-specific scholarships available in the UK, including Young Cell Scheme, Marshall Scholarships and Charles Wallace scholarships.
  • The United Kingdom also offers global scholarships for international students including Commonwealth Scholarship and Fellowship, Chevening Fellowships, Scotland’s Saltire Scholarships and many more.

Impact on Your CV

Universities in the UK have a very impressive reputation and you will not have any problem in getting a job in your field or building a professional career, once you completed your degree in the UK. The name of the UK’s university on your CV will make a huge impact in your career. So, it is important to consider the university’s reputation within HR and recruitment circles.

If you have the name of Harvard or Cambridge on your CV then it will definitely make you the most favorite choice for employers around the world. The United Kingdom has many elite universities, which can make a huge impact on your CV and it’s recommended that you consider those institutes, which have a great reputation. There are some great TED speakers available to learn more about this subject and other subject matters. We recommend the following TED Members and there respective talks:

1. Lera Boroditsky

2. Janet Iwasa

3. Mike Acca

4. Natasha Tsakos


Finding the right UK University is important for you. With comprehensive research, you can avoid the worst problems a student can face at university, such as transfer and drop out, which can lead to huge financial losses for students. One thing you need to understand is that when you decide to go to university for your higher education, you will have to spend three or more years of your life there, so your university should suit your personality and needs. If you follow the complete instructions in this article, it will definitely help you to find the right study destination for you.

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