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Become a Principal Fellow of the HEA

If you have an established academic career with substantial strategic responsibilities in HE and you’re seeking to exert influence within the sector, an HEA Principal Fellowship could add great value to your professional teaching experience.

You’ll have a sustained, effective record of strategic impact at institutional, national or international level and be committed to wider strategic leadership in teaching. You might also be one, or both, of the following:

  • a highly experienced member of senior staff with wide-ranging academic or strategic leadership responsibilities in connection with key aspects of teaching and supporting learning.
  • responsible for institutional strategic leadership and policymaking in the area of teaching and learning, possibly extending beyond your own institution.

We would encourage you to arrange a brief conversation with a member of the Recognition Team ( to discuss the expectations of PFHEA, in respect of scope, scale and success, if you are considering applying for Principal Fellowship.

Applicants may apply online by logging into MyAcademy. The application process consists of an Account of Professional Practice (APP), three supporting statements from advocates and payment of a fee where applicable. 

Application fees 2016/17

  Accredited Provision (individual from a subscribing institution – strategic or accredited) Accredited Provision (individual from a non-subscribing institution) Direct application to the HEA (individual from a subscribing institution – strategic or accredited) Direct application to the HEA (individual from non-subscribing institution)
Principal Fellow

No cost




Your application will demonstrate that you meet Descriptor 4 (D4) of the UKPSF. For further guidance, please see HEA Fellowships.

Our recognition events and writing retreats provide a structured environment in which to reflect and prepare your application.


Useful resources

- Principal Fellow guidance and application template

- Principal Fellow additional guidance notes

- Principal Fellow advocate guidance notes

- UK Professional Standards Framework