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Celebrating Research Excellence

REF 2021 Results


in the UK for Agriculture, Veterinary and Food Sciences


in the UK for Health and Biomedical Sciences


in the UK for Law


of our research environment was assessed as world-leading or internationally excellent.

The Research Excellence Framework (REF) is a UK-wide assessment of the quality of research in universities undertaken by expert review panels.

The University finalised its submission to REF 2021 in March 2021. This encompassed 22 of the 34 UoAs. Across the submission, 2,267 research outputs were submitted from 1,084 submitted staff, along with 84 impact case studies.

The most recent results have been published in May 2022, and have confirmed our place as a world-leading university. The results demonstrated our research excellence across a range of disciplines, putting us in the top 20 per cent of all UK universities.

Full results for Queen's

REF 2021 presents the results by subject area and quality is graded as follows:


world leading


internationally excellent


internationally recognised

What is REF?

The Research Excellence Framework (REF) is the system for assessing the quality of research in UK higher education institutions.

More about REF 2021

We're committed to making a meaningful impact on the world.

Researchers at Queen's help tackle the global challenges of our age, changing people’s lives for the better.