High-impact research ranks Cardiff School of Optometry & Vision Sciences among best in UK
16 January 2015
The sustained excellence of our world-leading interdisciplinary health research - involving contributions from the academic schools of Dentistry, Healthcare Sciences, Medicine, Optometry and Vision Sciences, and Pharmacy and Pharmaceutical Sciences-has resulted in Cardiff being ranked among the very best in the UK.
Our success has been built on ground-breaking discoveries that deliver benefits for human health and welfare.
The UK-wide assessment of the quality of University research, called the Research Excellence Framework (REF), scored Cardiff UNIVERSITY at 3.42 out of 4 in this area against a UK average of just over 3. This placed the University fourth overall in the country. It also means that of UK schools of optometry in the REF Cardiff School of Optometry & Vision Sciences is ranked the highest.
The impact of our work has been immense ranging from the introduction of new therapies and diagnostics, leading change in practice guidelines and standards, through to advancing and informing public body policy initiatives.
It is no surprise that 90% of our submissions to the REF that exemplified our societal benefit were given the highest four-star rating.
Our research environment, another of the REF rankings, was assessed to be 100% at the highest four-star rating, indicative of an environment that is "conducive to producing research of world-leading quality". We were ranked first in the UK on this criterion.
This same environment also supports undergraduate and post-graduate training, supplying many of the UK's top professionals in these disciplines.
Professor Marcela Votruba, Head of School of Optometry & Vision Sciences at Cardiff University said: "These results confirm our position as a UK leading School of Optometry. Our research deals with the major causes of sight loss and is having huge impact. REF 2014 recognises the great research that has been done within the School."
Professor Mark Gumbleton, the lead for Cardiff's submission to the Allied Health REF assessment unit, said: "REF 2014 has confirmed the world-leading expertise and culture we have in Cardiff to deliver far-reaching and significant benefits for society through our research excellence.
"Each of the health schools has its own distinct academic discipline but the common focus is engagement with real-world problems to transform human health and welfare.
"REF 2014 has recognised the success of our interdisciplinary approach to research, an approach supported by excellent staff, world-class facilities and the very brightest research students."
Find out more
The Research Excellence Framework is made up of Units of Assessment (UoA). The UoA's relevant to the College of Biomedical and Life Sciences were numbers 1 to 5. You can see how they performed by following the links below:
UoA1 –Clinical medicine
UoA5 –Biological sciences
The REF provides a robust and thorough assessment of the quality of universities' research in all disciplines. The research of 52,061 academic staff from 154 UK universities was peer-reviewed by a series of panels comprising UK and international experts, and external users of research.
The REF provides accountability for public investment in research and demonstrates the benefits of that investment. The results provide benchmarks and public information about the research performance of universities. The results will be used by the four UK higher education funding bodies to allocate research funding to universities – around £2 billion per year from 2015-16.
Further information about the REF results can be found at the following: