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Careers & Enterprise Centre

Durham Award

What is the Durham Award?

The Durham Award is a mark of excellence, recognising that Durham students bring so much more than a degree to your workplace. Developed in partnership with employers and students, the Durham Award ensures our graduates can demonstrate they have the skills that you need to help your organisation succeed.

How does the Award work?

The undergraduate Durham Award is a non-academic, non-credit bearing certificate for final year students. It has three main elements:

1) Students are asked to reflect on their personal development across four broad areas of University life:

  • University involvement, through colleges, sports teams and societies
  • Community engagement, through voluntary work
  • Work experience, paid or voluntary
  • Additional skills, through relevant training and courses

2) Students complete an application form matching the skills they have developed from these experiences against the key competencies that you have told us you value:

  • Communication
  • Teamwork
  • Commercial awareness
  • Leadership
  • Initiative/problem solving

3) Students are invited to a 30 minute interview (including a presentation) to discuss their application and experiences in more detail.

The postgraduate Durham Award is open to any student studying on a taught masters programme, with places limited to 100 each year. It is designed to help students focus on how their masters degree can help to make them more employable.

Students participate in a series of compulsory workshops:

  • Identifying your skills
  • Understanding yourself
  • Selling your skills

If all workshops are attended, then they are invited to attend a panel interview.

Assessment is by reflective portfolio.

How can I get involved?

The Durham Award has been created in partnership with graduate employers and your support is vital to ensure its success.

To ensure the quality of the Durham Award we encourage employers to be involved in the assessment process. We welcome employers to sit on the interview panels for the Durham Award. Interviews are held in sessions which usually run for a complete morning or afternoon. This will usually be from late February to early March for undergraduates and from mid-May to early June for postgraduates.


If you are interested in getting involved in the Durham Award, please contact the Employabilty Development Manager:

Tim Ellis

Careers, Employability and Enterprise Centre

The Palatine Centre
Durham University
Stockton Road

tel: 01913341590

Award Handbook

Durham Award for Current Students

All the information needed to put together a successful application for the Durham Award can be found under the Employability & Skills tab in duo.