Press release

Professor Chris Husbands named as inaugural TEF Chair

Professor Chris Husbands has been named as the first Chair of the Teaching Excellence Framework.

Professor Chris Husbands, Vice-Chancellor of Sheffield Hallam University has been named as the first Chair of the Teaching Excellence Framework (TEF) panel following a recruitment process led by government.

Professor Husbands will head up the assessment panel that will make decisions on university ratings in the second and third year of the programme.

The Teaching Excellence Framework has been introduced to ensure excellent teaching and student job prospects are at the heart of higher education. The framework, which for the first time places the significance of teaching on a par with research, will put clear information into the hands of students so they know where teaching is best and what benefits they can expect to gain from their courses.

The expert assessment panel will award each higher education provider a clearly understandable rating of ‘Outstanding’, ‘Excellent’ or ‘Meets Expectations’, based on evidence and a number of metrics.

Professor Chris Husbands, Vice-Chancellor of Sheffield Hallam University, said:

I am delighted to have been appointed as chair of the government’s Teaching Excellence Framework panel.

The TEF aims to recognise and reward excellent learning and teaching in higher education. It will build on the existing high standards of learning and teaching in universities, and I hope that it provides positive outcomes for all students, including those from disadvantaged backgrounds. I’ve always been passionate about the importance of high quality teaching, and look forward to working with government and the sector to secure the benefits which TEF can bring.

UK higher education has a global reputation for excellence, and I’m looking forward to working as part of the panel to help shape and guide the assessment process at this important time in the evolution of higher education.

Universities and Science Minister Jo Johnson said;

I would like to welcome Professor Husbands to this vital role. By taking into account important measures such as student satisfaction and graduate employment rates, the Teaching Excellence Framework will give students clear information about where they can achieve the best outcomes and for the first time, place teaching quality on a par with research.

Professor Husbands has senior leadership experience from a varied range of higher education providers, in addition to direct knowledge of teaching in other sectors and a distinguished research background. In his new role he will help to build on the existing high standards we expect of providers, stretching the best and rightly encouraging those with variable quality to improve.

Nicola Dandridge, the Chief Executive of UUK, said:

The TEF represents a complex exercise, and Professor Husbands’ outstanding leadership and academic experience will help ensure that both the sector and students have confidence in the TEF process and judgements.

Professor Husbands has already begun his role and will be in the position for a period of 2 years.

Notes to Editors

  1. The core metrics that the TEF will consider are based on the National Student Survey, student retention data and student employment prospects, alongside additional contextual evidence submitted by the provider.

  2. Professor Chris Husbands became Vice-Chancellor of Sheffield Hallam University in January 2016. He has held senior leadership posts in universities for over 15 years, as Head of the Institute of Education at Warwick University (2000 to 2003), as Dean of Education and Lifelong Learning at the University of East Anglia (2003 to 2007), as Dean of Faculty and then Director at the Institute of Education (2007 to 2015) and as Vice-Provost at University College London (2014 to 2015).

  3. He began his career as a teacher and senior manager in urban secondary comprehensive schools before becoming a university lecturer. Since then he has undertaken senior roles across UK universities for more than 15 years.

  4. Professor Husbands’ academic expertise lies in education policy and practice. He has extensive experience in the development of high performance education systems, school system reform and teacher quality. He has led almost 30 research projects with a total value of more than £5 million and has taught and consulted in 30 countries across 4 continents.

  5. He currently holds roles with the Higher Education Statistics Agency and Universities UK - on its Teacher Education Advisory Group, and its Student Policy Network. He is a member of the HEFCE Centre for Global Higher Education and the International Council of Confucius Institutes. He is also a Fellow of the Academy of Social Sciences, as well as an Honorary Fellow of Emmanuel College, Cambridge.