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safeguarding standards and improving the quality of UK higher education

Our reviewers

Peer review​

QAA reviews are carried out by teams from a pool of more than 400 reviewers, who are drawn from universities and colleges around the UK. The principle of peer review ensures providers can be confident that judgements are made by those with experience and understanding of higher education. Students are partners in their learning experiences and play a part in all review methods. Their roles range from contributing to specific meetings to being a full member of a review process.

We have reviewers from all types of providers of higher education, from universities, FE colleges and private colleges, and from the main subject disciplines. Most of our reviewers are academics with postgraduate qualifications, many with doctorates. Some hold senior roles such as Vice-Chancellor, Principal or Pro-Vice-Chancellor. Some reviewers have retired recently from a university or a college and bring extensive knowledge and experience of higher education with them.

We take considerable care to ensure that those selected to undertake reviews possess current or very recent relevant experience, that they are provided with appropriate training, and that all reviews are conducted in a professional manner, reflecting our standards of professional integrity.

Our reviews are always conducted by reviewers who are e​xternal to the institution being reviewed.

Reviewer profile

This data sheet shows the profile of our reviewers across all review methods (PDF, 111KB) and also in relation to Higher Education Review, the review method for publicly funded providers of higher education in England, Wales and Northern Ireland.

Reviewer database

We aim to be open and transparent about our processes and review methods and have published a searchable database​ of QAA reviewers​ in recognition of these aims.

Recruitment and selection of reviewers

To become a reviewer, an individual's experience must relate to managing, developing, delivering and/or assessing higher education in higher education providers or colleges. Student reviewers have current or recent experience of studying in a UK higher education provider and of representing students' interests in their place of study.

Reviewers are selected by QAA from nominations made by UK providers against published selection criteria. It is our aim to achieve a balance in the reviewer cohort, which considers level of study, institution type and other factors. We aspire to promote equality of opportunities and encourage a wide diversity among review teams.

If you are interested in becoming a QAA reviewer, please see our Appointment of reviewers page for more information.

Evaluation

We evaluate all reviews through feedback from providers, student participants and reviewers.​