TODAY The Herald launches its new Higher Education Awards to recognise the outstanding contribution made by colleges and universities across Scotland.
The awards, in association with the University of the West of Scotland (UWS), comprise 12 categories which look at how institutions develop innovative materials and methods in their teaching and research.
Supported by the Scottish Qualifications Authority (SQA), City of Glasgow College, technology provider Jisc and the Scottish Funding Council (SFC) the
awards will also examine how colleges and universities market themselves, use technology, engage with employers, support students and promote economic sustainability.
The overall award for the Higher Education Institution of the Year will be judged on the basis of the quality of the submissions from the other main categories.
Welcoming the awards, Professor Craig Mahoney, principal of UWS, said: “Every day truly extraordinary things are happening at Scotland’s universities and higher education colleges where the transformational impact on students is quite astonishing.
“The Scottish higher education sector makes a hugely important contribution to the country’s economy and we are delighted to be supporting these important inaugural awards which celebrate the successes and achievements of the sector.”
Dr Janet Brown, chief executive of the SQA, said the qualifications body was delighted to be sponsoring the awards.
She said: “SQA is looking forward to recognising college and university achievements, particularly in our sponsored category of Outstanding Employer Engagement.
“Ensuring people have the necessary skills embedded in their qualifications is key to ensuring they are successful in employment and in enabling their future progression and contribution to Scotland’s economy.”
Paul Little, principal of City of Glasgow College, also said he was delighted the institution was involved.
“It is rewarding to see recognition given to the excellent work going on within our educational institutions and the positive impact this has on our society,” he said.
Jason Miles-Campbell, head of Jisc Scotland and Northern Ireland, which provides technology to the education sector, said: “As the sector’s body for digital technologies, we are aware of the transformational role it can play within a university.
“We know that many organisations in Scotland are already using technology innovatively to deliver enhanced learning, teaching and research. This award will recognise the very best in practice.”
Laurence Howells, chief executive of the SFC, added: “No matter where you live, what your school or your family background is, everyone with talent and a desire to learn should have access to higher education.
“We’re determined this should happen and want to celebrate every success along the way. These awards are a great way of celebrating.”
The awards hope to contribute to the future progress in the higher and education sector by recognising excellence and raising the status of learning and teaching.
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