University of Huddersfield wins Global Teaching Excellence Award 2017

Monday, 4 September, 2017

The University of Huddersfield has been declared the winner of the HEA’s inaugural Global Teaching Excellence Award (GTEA).

The award, launched by the HEA in February, recognises outstanding institution-wide approaches to teaching. GTEA is open to all universities and higher education providers worldwide.

Huddersfield’s success was announced at a celebratory event in London last night for the 27 GTEA finalists (listed below).  They included universities from Australasia, North America, Europe, Asia, and Africa.

Professor Stephanie Marshall, HEA Chief Executive, said, “With high quality submissions from around the world, I think this award has really captured the imagination of the higher education sector and will help raise the profile of teaching globally.

“The 27 finalists all had compelling submissions in meeting the criteria of leadership, teaching and student support, and we are delighted to recognise that outstanding work and share the learning from GTEA. 

“Of course a particular note of congratulations goes to the University of Huddersfield whose submission was unanimously applauded by our international panel of judges for the drive and energy with which the executive team is leading teaching.  I’d also highlight the University’s success in developing students as independent learners.

“Most importantly, I would like to say ‘well done’ to all the finalists.”

Professor Bob Cryan, celebrating 10 years as Vice-Chancellor of the University of Huddersfield, said, “I am absolutely thrilled and proud that the University has won this award.  Over the past ten years we have worked incredibly hard to build a student experience that is second to none.  Winning GTEA is a huge tribute to the leadership team, our staff and our students, all of whom have formed an incredible partnership to make our University and its teaching so very special.”

Svava Bjarnason, chair of the GTEA judging panel and a former member of the World Bank Education Sector Board, said, “The judges were impressed by the overall quality of the submissions. Well done to the University of Huddersfield and the other 26 finalists.”

“Three things that characterised the finalists’ success are: a strong commitment to teaching through mission relevant strategies; second, the scholarship of teaching and learning is absorbed into continuous professional development programmes; and third, the encouragement of participating in placements, internships and volunteering – all of which are hugely enriching the student experience.”

The HEA will publish a detailed report to share the learning from all the submissions to this year’s GTEA in the autumn.

The details for entries for GTEA 2018 are now available here:

Notes to editors:

What other finalists said about GTEA 2017:

The GTEA application aligns with our growing international reach and ambition to secure our long-term future in the top 100 universities in the world. We wanted to signal – internally and externally – the scale and scope of our education ambition and our belief that we have much to contribute to, and even more to learn from, our global colleagues….The GTEA entry was both timely and appropriate and we are delighted to be on the shortlist." Professor Sir David Eastwood, Vice-Chancellor and Principal, University of Birmingham

“The process has certainly galvanised our ambition of Monash becoming Australia’s standout university for teaching excellence; professionalism in teaching; and curriculum development and assessment… the domains of excellence provided, and the indicative evidence gathered, strongly align with Monash’s strategic plan. Together we will continue to utilise our data and findings to reflect, revise and improve our policies and practices to ensure our commitment to learning and teaching is one that evolves to support not only the needs of our students and educators, but also the employers for whom our graduates will one-day work for.

“Our reason for applying was twofold – we wanted to showcase our work to a new global audience and also see how Monash compared on an international teaching scale. Monash is delighted to have been shortlisted and extends its gratitude to the HEA for establishing this much needed award.” Angela Carbone Director, Education Excellence, Monash University

“The application process for the HEA Global Teaching Excellence Award has challenged us to clarify our vision, evaluate our teaching strategy and ensure we have a robust scorecard in place that measures the strategy implementation… [GTEA]has encouraged our staff and faculty and bolstered their confidence. They have invested in innovation in teaching, learning, and assessing by leaving their comfort zones...I would encourage any higher education institution to consider applying for this award. By re-evaluating one’s own pillars of excellence, we were challenged to define or confirm our commitment to the domains of excellence in leadership of teaching and learning, teaching and pedagogical strategy, and student support and achievement. Curating indicative evidence forced us to question and validate our practices.”  Stephen Earnhart, Academic Director, Swiss Hotel Management School

“The process of applying afforded the University an opportunity to reflect on teaching and learning holistically, focusing on our strategy, vision, mission, core values and how these translated in terms of implementation at the coal-face…

 Working as a team across domains responsible for different aspects and components of the T & L process provided University of Johannesburg (UJ) with an opportunity to have critical conversations on how we journey to ensure that we are at the cutting-edge of teaching and learning with technology. We reflected on UJ’s strategic commitment to access and success for students from disadvantaged communities matched by a commitment to epistemological access, to enable student success. Our entry was prompted by our commitment to our vision of being a Pan-African centre of global excellence and stature. The application enabled a showcasing of UJ’s achievements and providing evidence of how our strategic interventions are beginning to come to fruition. Professor Angina Parekh, Deputy Vice-Chancellor: Academic, University of Johannesburg

The finalists this year are:

Aston University

United Kingdom

Edith Cowan University


Falmouth University

United Kingdom

Hong Kong Polytechnic University

Hong Kong

Leeds Beckett University

United Kingdom

McMaster University


Monash University 


Norwegian Academy of Music


Queensland University of Technology


Swiss Hotel Management School


Teesside University

United Kingdom

The Open University

United Kingdom

The University of Adelaide


The University of Law

United Kingdom

University College London

United Kingdom

University of Bath

United Kingdom

University of Birmingham

United Kingdom

University of Bristol

United Kingdom

University of Derby

United Kingdom

University of Essex

United Kingdom

University of Exeter

United Kingdom

University of Huddersfield

United Kingdom

University of Johannesburg

South Africa

University of Plymouth

United Kingdom

University of Salford

United Kingdom

University of Wollongong


Utrecht University


For further information, please contact William Syms, HEA Head of Communication & Partnership Manager:

E T +44 (0)1904 717647   M +44 (0)7714 773210 or  +44 (0) 7500 063320 Skype williamsyms_1