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Durham University


Research in action

Research led-education means learning at the forefront of the subject, and working in Nepal gave me the opportunity to gain a much better understanding of global development issues.” 

Charlie Jefferson, Geography student, who spent time undertaking research in Nepal as part of his course. 

A research-led education

Durham is a research intensive university with a long-established commitment to conducting world-class research and delivering a research-led education. The research our academics conduct shapes and inspires the disciplinary structure of our academic departments, as well as our college communities, and directly informs our undergraduate teaching. This means that when you join Durham University you will be benefiting from an education informed by the latest research in the subject area. 

More importantly, there are opportunities for you to actively participate in our research environment through seminars, conferences, workshops and fieldwork. 

The results of Research Excellence Framework (REF) 2014 support this, with 83 per cent of Durham’s research being assessed as internationally excellent quality or world-leading, categorised as 3* or 4*. REF 2014 identified world-leading research at Durham University in every subject.

For research impact, Chemistry and Education were top amongst their respective subjects in the country and Theology was second nationally. These results demonstrate the breadth of world-leading research being undertaken at Durham University that our students directly benefit from. 

Further details on our research outputs, research environment, and research impact are available on our REF webpages.

The research by Dr Alison Lane (pictured above), from the Department of Psychology demonstrates this approach:

“My research into the rehabilitation of visual field disorders feeds directly into the teaching. Students have to learn about specific neuropsychological techniques and therefore I can use my own experiments as a starting point for this. The research has found that a computer-based technique improved partially-sighted people’s ability to ‘see’ better. It may eventually improve and broaden the portfolio of rehabilitation techniques for partially-sighted patients.”

Learning from the best

"Learning from research active academics has been a more essential part to my degree studies than I initially imagined. Learning from academics who are experts in the field you are studying is a privilege that gives you an in depth insight into the most intricate legal issues that you would not get elsewhere. It also ensures you are always up-to-date with developments in your preferred area.

The quality of research at Durham means that the academics you are learning from are world-renowned and this transfers into your learning experience. The emphasis Durham puts on independent research, even at undergraduate level is unique. This focus allows you to hone in on particular areas of interest and choose your courses and dissertation appropriately."

Lauren Slone, Law student