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What is it for?

The Distinguished Education Excellence Fellowship is awarded to individuals who have been teaching/supporting learning in HE for more than four years and can demonstrate a sustained body of outstanding practices that have impacted significantly on students and influenced the practice of peers within the University.

In particular, the individual’s contribution will be directly related to the Educational Excellence themes and priorities within the University’s strategy and will focus on initiative(s) that demonstrates highly effective problem solving, influence, enhancement, or innovation in L&T.

The purpose of the award is to recognise, reward and celebrate those who can demonstrate sustained teaching/ supporting learning excellence and to create a proactive learning community within Ulster.

Up to two awards are normally available and the award of £1000 to successful applicants should be used to support the recipients’ CPD in learning and teaching.

Distinguished Education Excellence Fellows will be expected to share their experience and practice with colleagues at Ulster. They will be expected to provide ongoing leadership in L&T through involvement in Learning Enhancement initiatives and mentoring colleagues.

Who is eligible?

  • Any member of staff who teaches or supports learning at Ulster University and has been teaching/ supporting learning in HE for four years or more.
  • Applicants should have achieved SFHEA at the time of making their application.

How to apply

Applications will be submitted on BBL, all Ulster staff have access to the Distinguished Education Excellence Awards BBL Area where the Award Template and submission drop box for each Award category can be found.

Applicants should provide a 3000-word Reflective Statement on their sustained contribution to excellence in teaching/ learning support demonstrating how they have had a transformative effect on student learning. This should evidence a sustained body of outstanding practices that have impacted significantly on students and influenced the practice of peers.

Submissions should be endorsed by the applicant’s Line Manager to confirm the veracity of the claims made within the application.

How is the award judged?

The award scheme is judged by a panel including the PVC Academic Quality and Student Experience, all Associate Dean(s) (Academic Quality and Student Experience), representatives of Learning Enhancement, the Awards’ Manager, representative University National Teaching Fellows and the President of UUSU.


The Assessment Panel will be looking for applicants’ ability to:

  • Demonstrate a significant contribution to the Ulster University community as part of this application.
  • Show evidence of Individual Excellence: sustained evidence of enhancing and transforming the student learning experience commensurate with the individual’s context and the opportunities afforded by it that demonstrates highly effective problem solving, enhancement, or innovation in L&T that aligns to University L&T priorities
  • Show evidence of Promoting Excellence through influencing the practice of peers: evidence of supporting colleagues and influencing support for student learning; demonstrating impact and engagement beyond the applicant’s immediate academic or professional role.
  • Show agency in Developing Excellence: evidence of the applicant’s commitment to her/his ongoing professional development with regard to teaching and learning and/or learning support.
  • Support the claim with independent evidence, such as testimonials (particularly from students), supporting data and/or evidence of effectiveness and impact – (evidence should be integrated throughout the claim and contributes to the word count.)
  • Be underpinned by relevant references to the professional knowledge base in HE academic practice as evidence of scholarship in learning and teaching.

When to apply

  • Applications should be received by next deadline TBC
  • Submission as a single PDF File via the Award Dropbox on BBL

Distinguished Education Excellence Fellowship Award Winners

2023-24 Winners

2022 Winners

2021 Winners

Sustained Educational Excellence

  • Trevor Cadden
  • Paul Kitchin
  • Colm Murphy
  • Barbara Skinner

2019/2020 Winners

Sustained Educational Excellence

Educational Leadership

2018/2019 Winners

Educational Leadership Excellence Award

2017/2018 Winners

Sustained Educational Excellence Award

  • Dr Liz Doherty
  • Danielle McWall
  • Dr Anne Moorhead