REF 2021

Birmingham City University's hub for everything related to the Research Excellence Framework.


Welcome to BCU's REF 2021 website. It summarises our submission to Research England’s Research Excellence Framework in March 2021.

Find out more about REF 2021

Our short film introduces you to this year’s Research Excellence Framework. Watch now to find out what REF 2021 is, how research is assessed, how BCU’s research can be categorised and details of our submission to REF 2021.

Watch video


Our submission involved research carried out by 310 individual staff, submitted to 14 Units of Assessment, and comprising over 700 outputs.

Our results


Our submission included a range of ground-breaking projects, from those changing health guidelines to others profiling the true extent of the contribution of Muslim soldiers in WWI. 

Take a look at our impact case studies

An introduction to REF 2021

Learn more about the latest Research Excellence Framework, how it is measured and BCU’s approach to REF 2021.

Our research journey

As the ‘University for Birmingham,’ our core mission is to transform lives by creating forward-thinking graduates, and serving as a regional anchor and civic university.

REF 2021 Results

Our REF 2021 results measure the excellence of our research outputs, impact and environment.

More information

  • REF 2021

    Birmingham City University's hub for everything related to the Research Excellence Framework.

  • Impact case studies

    Doing research and discovering new knowledge makes us a universityCoupling the results of our research to our teaching and to our innovation and enterprise activities to deliver real-world impacts outside academia helps us deliver our mission as the University for Birmingham. 

  • Units of Assessment

    For REF 2021 there were 34 units of assessment covering all academic disciplines. The REF 2021 UoAs differ from those of REF 2014 and the previous RAEs, making direct comparisons across exercises difficult in some disciplines.

  • Research centres

    Our research centres work to address key local, national and global challenges, in line with the priorities of the University and our students.

  • Research news

    Find out more about the latest news from our research activities and staff.