Promotion to Principal Lecturer Student Experience

  • Promotion to Principal Lecturer Student Experience is based on an outstanding contribution to teaching and learning and will normally reflect progression towards the professorial grade via the teaching and learning pathway. Candidates are expected to have led excellent or innovative practices that have made a substantial contribution to the student learning experience within their field of work or professional practice. They will have developing recognition for impact in terms of reach and significance beyond their department or discipline.

    Applications are considered by the Senior Academic Promotions Committee.

    It should be noted that there is no longer a workload allocation automatically linked to this promotion. As with promotion to Readership, the promotion (to Grade 12) is purely a recognition of the valuable contribution made by an individual with respect to the student experience. It should be noted too that this promotion is distinct from that of ‘Principal Lecturer’ which relates more to academic leadership and management at a programme level.

    Promotion to Principal Lecturer: key criteria

    1. Excellent teaching at undergraduate or postgraduate level, which is leading edge and relevant to contemporary contexts.
    2. Substantial and sustained contribution to successful innovation in teaching and learning.
    3. Significant contribution to the enhancement of the higher education student experience across the Faculty, University, or the wider higher education sector.
    4. Published scholarship/research in aspects of higher education teaching and learning and the student experience.
    5. Active and inspiring participation in activities for enhancing the student experience, which develops others.
    6. A clear and sustainable programme of teaching development and your related own professional development for the next three to five years.
    7. Successful completion of a higher education teaching qualification and a Senior Fellowship of the HEA.

    In determining whether the criteria are met, the panel will look for evidence of the impact of your contribution, which could include:

    • Reputation as an excellent teacher e.g. Senior Fellow of the Higher Education Academy, Brookes Teaching Fellowship Excellence and Innovation Award, Student Led Teaching Award, advising for other universities, external examining, external validation panel member, invited workshops/course, consultancy, guest speaker invitations, organisation of conferences, seminars and workshops on topics related to the student experience, contribution to policy, procedures or practice for sector bodies or university committees.
    • Demonstrable expertise in teaching across a range of higher levels e.g. numbers of higher degree students under supervision; success rates in higher degree completions and quality of submissions; contribution to department/faculty postgraduate teaching and preparation programmes; mentoring of postgraduate students; peer recognition of contributions to postgraduate education.
    • Evidence of innovative teaching and learning practices e.g. integration of technology enhanced learning, successful activities which involve students as partners in their learning, contribution to student support.
    • Evaluations of the impact of innovations e.g. analysis of student attainment, analysis of student feedback, external examiner feedback, peer observation, evaluation reports, programme and faculty annual reviewers, action research.
    • A significant contribution to the learning and assessment process e.g. curriculum development, embedding inclusive practices, programme redesign to improve assessment practices or develop employability, and assessment and evaluations of this contribution.
    • Pedagogic research, as demonstrated by publications and citations, editorial board membership, journal reviewing. Success in securing funding for teaching and learning developments/innovations or pedagogic research.
    • Scholarship as demonstrated by dissemination of small scale practitioner research and case studies of practice, engaging in a community of scholarly teachers, leading innovations and enhancements which are informed by relevant literature, research informed teaching or involving students in undergraduate research, and its impact on departmental, disciplinary or institutional practices.
    • Mentoring and supporting less experienced staff in the development of their teaching and learning practice e.g. running staff development workshops, developing and using coaching skills, supporting Associate Lecturers or colleagues in ACPs, running writing groups. Introducing procedures which support less experienced staff e.g. assessment calibrations, peer observation.

    Application Process

    Candidates are required to provide:

    1. A full CV, demonstrating how the above criteria are met (maximum of 10 pages long in minimum of 11pt font with normal margins and no web links).
    2. A supporting statement which sets out the case for promotion in a summary form (maximum of one side A4).
    3. A critical appraisal from the Pro Vice-Chancellor Dean or Director
    4. The names and addresses of three external referees. The referees should be individuals who can make an objective and well-informed assessment of the candidate’s contribution to enhancing the student experience. The promotions committee will have discretion to approach any of the suggested referees, or to identify others if appropriate.
    5. These documents should be emailed to
    Application Timetable Date
    Annual call for applications in Staff Update November 
    Closing date for receipt of applications January
    The Senior Academic Promotions Committee meets to review applications and to decide whether to proceed to go to referees. March 
    The Senior Academic Promotions Committee makes promotion decisions based on the applications and referees' reports. July 
    Promotions take effect from 1 January.

    November 2021