Queen's University supports a thriving teaching community of over 900 academic staff - more than 300 of these have gained membership of the Higher Education Academy, the professional body for teaching staff in higher education. The University can offer a wide range of degree programmes in subjects as diverse as creative writing, medicine, computer games design and accounting.
As with other UK universities, teaching quality at Queen's is assessed regularly by the national Quality Assurance Agency (QAA). In December 2004 the QAA visited the University to carry out one its major, periodic Institutional Audits. The purpose of an Institutional Audit is to provide public information on the quality of the opportunities available to students and on the academic standards of awards that a university makes. The Audit was a rigorous review of the management of quality and standards at the University and covered the whole institution, looking in depth at a number of subject areas and involving both staff and students. We take great pride in the fact that we received the highest grading QAA can award, that is, that "broad confidence can be placed in the soundness of the University's present and likely future management of the quality of its programmes and the academic standards of its awards".
The results of QAA Institutional Audit are the single most important confirmation of our academic standards and quality and of our commitment to developing learning and teaching. There are other accolades, however, that are testament to our teaching quality. The National Teaching Fellowships celebrate excellence in teaching by recognising individuals who are outstanding as teachers and promoters of learning. Professor Carol McGuinness (Psychology), Dr Beverley Milton-Edwards (Politics), Mr David Gibson (Management) and Professor Brian Whalley (Geography) are all worthy recipients of these most prestigious of teaching awards.
Moreover, as with other leading universities, teaching at Queen's is based in a strong research culture. The results of the latest national Research Assessment Exercise place Queen's in the top 20 universities in the UK. All of this means that students are exposed to the excitement of leading edge research and are being taught by those engaged in extending the frontiers of knowledge and scholarship in their subjects.