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Research Impact

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This section contains information about the quality of Department of Oncology's research compared with other UK education instutions:


Research Excellence Framework 2014

The Research Excellence Framework (REF) 2014 is the current system for assessing the quality of research in UK higher education institutions. It replaced the Research Assessment Exercise (RAE), last conducted in 2008.

The 2014 REF was conducted jointly by the Higher Education Funding Council for England (HEFCE), the Scottish Funding Council (SFC), the Higher Education Funding Council for Wales (HEFCW) and the Department for Employment and Learning, Northern Ireland (DEL). The REF was managed by the REF team, based at HEFCE, on behalf of the four UK higher education funding bodies, and was overseen by the REF Steering Group, consisting of representatives of the four funding bodies.

The primary purpose of REF 2014 was to assess the quality of research and produce outcomes for each submission made by institutions:

  • The four higher education funding bodies will use the assessment outcomes to inform the selective allocation of their grant for research to the institutions which they fund, with effect from 2015-16.
  • The assessment provides accountability for public investment in research and produces evidence of the benefits of this investment.
  • The assessment outcomes provide benchmarking information and establish reputational yardsticks, for use within the higher education (HE) sector and for public information.

The REF used the following 3 assessment categories to derive overall quality scores:

Outputs/publications (65% of overall result):
‘Outputs’ are the product of any form of research, published between January 2008 and December 2013. They include publications such as journal articles, monographs and chapters in books, as well as outputs disseminated in other ways such as designs, performances and exhibitions.

Impact case studies (20% of overall result):
‘Impact’ is any effect on, change or benefit to the economy, society, culture, public policy or services, health, the environment or quality of life, beyond academia.

Environment (15% of overall result):
‘Environment’ refers to the strategy, resources and infrastructure that support research.

The quality of each element was graded, on average:

  • world-leading (4*)
  • internationally excellent (3*)
  • recognised internationally (2*)
  • recognised nationally (1*)

The Department of Oncology was submitted as part of the University of Cambridge’s Unit of Assessment 1: Clinical Medicine, along with the Departments of Clinical Biochemistry, CRUK Cambridge Institute, Haematology, Medicine, Medical  Genetics , MRC Cancer Unit, Obstetrics and Gynaecology, Pathology, Paediatrics, Radiology and Surgery. Our Unit of Assessment returned 192.05 FTE Category A staff and our results were:

% of the submission meeting the standard for:

4*

3*

2*

1*

U/C

Overall

58

29

12

0

1

Outputs

39.4

45.0

13.7

0.6

1.3

Impact

86.0

2.0

12.0

0.0

0.0

Environment

100.0

0.0

0.0

0.0

0.0

 

The research of 154 UK Universities was assessed. To see how we compared with other Universities/Institutions within our category see: http://results.ref.ac.uk/Results/ByUoa/1

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Research Assessment Exercise 2008

In the Research Assessment Exercise 2008, the Department staff featured in the University of Cambridge submission to the ''Cancer Studies Theme of Assessment', along with the University's Department of Pathology. The result of this assessment was that 35% of the profile of our submissions was awarded a 4* grading (world-leading in terms of originality, significance and rigour) and 45% was awarded a 3* grading (internationally excellent in terms of originality, significance and rigour). We were also ranked second in the Times Higher Education analysis of profiles submitted to the 'Cancer Studies Theme of Assessment'.

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