Latest news on REF 2021
- outputs – 60 per cent
- impact – 25 per cent
- environment – 15 per cent
Read full details on the initial decisions here:
Read full details on the initial decisions here:
The REF2014 website makes public all the research outputs that were submitted for the last REF, including the 300 word statements. On the website: http://results.ref.ac.uk/, click on ‘results and submissions’; you can then select a particular institution, or a Unit of Assessment (UCA submitted solely to UOA34, Art and Design: History, Theory and Practice in REF2014, and is likely to do so again). There are several routes in: you are looking for ‘Research Outputs’ (REF2). Clicking on an individual output brings up exactly what was submitted into the REF form, including the 300 word statement, which is under the ‘Additional Information’ heading.
It’s worth exploring some examples. Unfortunately, we don’t know which outputs received a high ranking, being judged to be 4* (world leading) or 3* (internationally excellent). The REF only publishes its results as a quality profile of all the outputs submitted by a single institution to a single UOA. However, looking at a really successful submission, where almost all of the outputs were judged to be 4* or 3*, will bring up statements for outputs that are very likely to have been highly ranked. An example is the University of Westminster’ submission to UOA34, where 85 per cent of outputs were ranked at 3* or 4*, and nothing fell below 2*.
Find some examples and note how the research is described: how directly does the statement address the criteria of originality, significance and rigour? What evidence does it give? Find examples in your discipline that do a good job of describing the research against the criteria.
The following questions should be useful in drafting 300 word statements:
What were the contexts to the research? What had other people done before? What did you do that was different? (think in terms of a literature review, contextual review, or scoping exercises)
So what? What has changed in your field (however narrowly defined) as a result of this research? (new knowledge, contribution)
What were the research questions? What were your aims? What processes did you follow? What were the theoretical frameworks? (methods, sources, procedures)
Don’t waste words describing the research: for non-text outputs, for instance exhibitions, there is another box for this (‘title and brief description’), where you can explain exactly what form the research took. If this applies to your output, draft this text too (provisionally up to 100 words).
Following additional development work on the submission of staff and outputs in REF2021, this webinar aims to share the direction of policy in advance of publications on the initial decisions for the next REF.
We encourage delegates to register before the event. If you experience any problems when registering please email firstname.lastname@example.org or call 0117 931 7062.
After registering you can test your connection for technical issues on the Workcast website.
A recording of the webinar will be available following the event.
Responses to the recent consultation on the second REF showed that some additional development work is needed in order to finalise the framework. This includes work on proposals around the submission of staff and outputs in the assessment.
To inform initial decisions on these areas the REF team have been engaging in dialogue with the sector. This webinar will outline the direction of policy in advance of publications on the initial decisions for REF 2021.
As an arts based institution, UCA has a different research output profile from larger multi-discipline universities. These tend to have a high percentage of published outputs, including authored books, edited books, chapters in books and journal articles. (see table below)
UCA’s profile is somewhat different, with the highest number of outputs including digital or visual media, exhibition, artefacts, design, and performance.
Last week we had a look at artefacts as research outputs. In this post we are going to look at Exhibition and Performance as research outputs. Both require the title, description, venue, date, and url (if one is available) for submission to REF.
A research output under exhibition includes:
• curating an exhibition
• solo exhibitions
• significant contributions to exhibitions by a group or a number of individuals.
A research output under performance includes solo performances, and significant contributions to performances made by a group or a number of individuals.
• Concerts and recitals
• Dance choreography including score, notations and objects
• Directing and/or producing performances
• Improvised performance
• Radio or other sound recordings or audio-visual recordings made for public access, including CDs and DVDs
• Theatre productions (drama, dance, opera, music theatre)
Listed below are examples of the exhibition and performance research outputs from UCA REF 2014.
You can click on the link to find out more about the research that led to these outputs.
|A Sort of Night to the Mind, A Kind of Night for our Thoughts:|
|At a Time of Crisis (AUDI Art Award artworks), exhibitions|
|Bread and Roses, co-directed & co-curated multi-strand arts|
|Cloth & Culture Now, curated exhibition, authored website, education|
|Cloth & Memory 2, curated exhibition, authored website, education|
|Cultex: textile as a cross cultural language, curated exhibition|
|David Colwell: making chairs; Fred Baier: the right angle; Richard La Trobe-Bateman: making triangles|
|Fairytale for Sale, exhibition, mongraph, catalogues|
|‘Garden Ruin’ and ‘Face Yourself’, solo exhibitions|
|Insight into Beauty – Contemporary Craft Inspired by Japan|
|Le Temps Spectaculaire, exhibitions, on-line article|
|Lost in Lace, curated exhibition, edited catalogue with essay|
|Manufactory and The Altogether, exhibition|
|Married Man, exhibition, colour photographs, looped audio|
|Pictures of Linda, exhibiton of colour photographs with accompanying|
|Resort 1, exhibition of 22 large scale colour photographs|
|Ritual and Setting, site-specific ceramics, exhibition, catalogue|
|‘The Market’: Hybrid spatial practices in contemporary art, exhibitions|
|Utopias, solo exhibition, catalogue|
|A duet (virtually), musical improvisation with live sonic|
|Jungle Fever, participatory performances, installation, publication|
According to REF 2014 definition, research is a process of investigation leading to new insights, effectively shared.
In the next series of our posts we will be focusing on research and research outputs, with particular emphasis on research in Art & Design.
Breaking down the REF definition in smaller components of ‘process of investigation’, ‘leading to new insights‘ and ‘effectively shared‘ may offer a useful means to study this definition more closely. This post will look at the ‘process of investigation’ and ‘leading to new insights’
‘Process of investigation’ or a process of inquiry is mainly concerned with research strategy and methodology. More traditional research methodologies are characterized by well-established and widely shared strategy and procedures, using very clear research methods (Haseman and Mafe, 2009). For example, let’s try to map the above REF definition with social research paradigm:
‘process of investigation’ needs to:
‘new insights’ need to:
Artists and creative practitioners do not always operate within conventional research strategies and methodological assumptions, although some traditional methodologies may meet some of the artists’ needs (e.g. reflective practice, action research , grounded theory and participant observation). Practice based research is a distinctive and widely established research strategy with the methods stemming from long-standing and accepted working methods and practices of the creative disciplines (Haseman and Mafe, 2009)
Carole Gray in Inquiry through practice: developing appropriate research strategies proposes the following definition and sets out two aspects:
‘… firstly, research which is initiated in practice, where questions, problems, challenges are identified and formed by the needs of practice and practitioners; and secondly, that the research strategy is carried out through practice, using predominantly methodologies and specific methods familiar to us as practitioners in the visual arts.’
Gray’s definition offers practice as a focal point of the research process: the questions are informed by the practice and the investigation is carried out through practice. The main quality of the methodology seems to be responsiveness, driven by the requirements of practice and the creative dynamic of the artwork.
According to Gray, practice and theory are reciprocal. Critical practice generates theory and theory informs practice. One of the characteristics of practice-based research is the use of visual and multi media methods of information gathering, selection, analysis, synthesis, presentation/communication.
Some of the specific research methods used within practice based research are:
making art/design work; observation and drawing (in all forms);sketchbook/notebook, idiosyncratic notation/symbol; visual diaries/self reflection/personal narrative/ critical writing; photography, video, sound; models/maquettes, experimentation with materials; concept mapping, diagrams; use of metaphor and analogy; organisational and analytical matrices, flow charts, story boards; multimedia/hypermedia applications; modelling/simulations, soft systems; electronic databases, visual and textual glossaries and archives. These have been augmented with useful social science methods, usually adapted in some way, e.g.: case study, participant-observation, personal constructs, interviews, questionnaires, multidimensional analysis, evaluative techniques like semantic differential, multiple sorting.
References: Denscombe,M.(2002) Ground Rules for Good Research: a 10 point guide for social researchers, Maidenhead: Open University Press pp.2-3 Gray, C.(1996) Inquiry through practice: developing appropriate research strategies, available at: http://carolegray.net/Papers%20PDFs/ngnm.pdf [accessed on 23 May, 2017] Haseman,B. Mafe, D.(2009) Acquiring Know-How: Research Training for Practice-led Researchers. In: H.Smith, R.T.Dean,ed., Practice-led Research, Research-led Practice in the Creative Arts, 1st ed. Edinburgh:Edinburgh University Press Ltd., pp.211-228
Why is this currently on my mind? It is because today the UK funding bodies have announced the membership of an Interdisciplinary Research Advisory Panel (IDAP) for the Research Excellence Framework (REF) 2021. I have been appointed as chair and will be working with colleagues from across the UK and across disciplinary backgrounds to consider…