Top-flight teachers gain new acclaim

April 13, 2007

The Higher Education Academy is preparing to put the finishing touches to a scheme designed to give champions of teaching and learning greater professional recognition.

A committee is being assembled that will consider applications from staff who wish to become senior fellows of the academy, the most prestigious of three new categories of professional status that may help excellent teachers compete on equal terms with researchers for internal promotion or posts at other institutions.

The first batch of senior fellows is expected to be named in the autumn. They will be able to use the letters SFHEA after their name, to mark outstanding achievement in teaching and for enhancing the student learning experience, combined with scholarship and academic leadership.

Two other categories of professional recognition were launched by the academy last month - associate status for staff who are relatively new to teaching, and fellow status for those who have a "substantive role in teaching and enhancing student learning".

The scheme aims to support and add value to the sector-owned UK Professional Standards Framework, which is now one year old.

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