Close Look at the Guardian University Awards 

A new year has come and it means that it is high time for the Guardian to hold the Guardian University Awards. This year the contest takes place for the sixth time and covers 15 various categories. This is an outstanding chance for higher education institutions in the UK to promote their positions in the sector and improve reputation in the public eye. Having received the award the university not only shows its best achievements but also increases the sphere of influence on readers from different corners of the world, let’s see what’s new about Guardian University Awards found our essay writers!

Key dates and deadlines

In order to successfully submit applicants, you should be aware of main time frames. Despite the fact that the Guardian University Awards 2018 has been already launched, you still have an opportunity to apply.

  1. From 9 January to 31 January – the early bird period;
  2. 23 February – the end of filing applications;
  3. March – the judging lunch and notifications for the shortlisted entries;
  4. April – award ceremony in London.



The shortlisted entries we selected by professional and competent judges who include specialists both from the Guardian and the UK higher education sector. Some names of the representative panel are Anna Fazackerley, Alex Bols, Judy Friedberg, Matt Hiely-Rayner, Smita Jamdar, Emma Leech, and Andy Westwood.


As we mentioned earlier this year’s list of categories includes 15 points that cover various spheres and thus allows the institutions to determine in which field they surpass.

Advancing staff equality. It is supported by Dixon Walter and deals with projects on support and development of staff diversity and equality.

Widening access and outreach. It is awarded for special merit in increasing the number of underrepresented students who entered the university thanks to a close cooperation with schools and communities.

Teaching excellence. This category covers the most powerful and efficient initiatives in the sphere of pedagogy that encourage students to learn.

Course and curriculum design. It highlights the most progressive approaches of institutions and departments to university education of diverse student groups and bodies.


Student experience. It focuses on the effective and innovative projects having a positive impact on the academic and personal student experience.

Retention, support, and student outcomes. It is awarded for successful programs and schemes which aim is to provide support to underperforming students.

Social and community impact. It pays special attention to the programs organized and conducted in cooperation with communities at different levels (local, national and global).

Employability and entrepreneurship. The category covers ideas and their implementation that help students to find a potential employer, to be comparative on the job market.

Research impact. In this category, the entries have to show academic influence by means of advancing knowledge or bring significant advantages for economy and society in general.

Business collaboration. It estimates partnership and cooperation between the university and a business or an industry that include the application of knowledge and resources in order to improve the economy.

Digital innovation. The category emphasizes the most successful development and implementation of digital technology solutions, online course technologies and student experience in the pedagogical process.


Internationalisation. It is awarded to the impressive projects and collaborations with global perspectives initiated and conducted by the university.

Buildings that inspire. The entries for this category should consider capital projects (a new build or a redevelopment) that has positively changed the experience of students and staff on the campus.

Marketing and comms campaigns. This award is intended for a creative and ingenious marketing or press campaign with a certain clear message to improve the university profile, show it from the other perspective, and attract the target audience.

Sustainability project. It covers phenomenal actions to provide and demonstrate a stable working and living environment in the higher education institution.

There is one more category supported by HSBC – Inspiring leader. It is founded to present inspiring leaders in the higher education sector of the UK.