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Mining your HEA application for skills

“You are adaptable and have more skills than you realise.”

Dr Bryony Parsons / Former postdoc, Learning Developer, University of Liverpool Library.

Teaching experience?

You may have either:

  • an associate fellowship (AFHEA)
  • or fellowship (FHEA) of the Higher Education Academy.

If you don’t, it’s worth considering, as a very useful development opportunity. If you are currently working at a UK based university it is likely that your university offers these qualifications.

If you do have a HEA teaching award:

You can identify adaptable skills by referring back to your application. Use this to identify:

  • knowledge and values
  • evidence of skills
  • assets you can bring to future roles

HEA Fellowship status?

HEA Fellowship status is gained by demonstrating that you have met at least some of the criteria outlined in the UK Professional Standards Framework for teaching and supporting learning in higher education (2011).

Core Knowledge, K1-K6, is more likely related to your subject specialism, although, transferable skills can be evidenced in K4: use and value of appropriate technologies.

This framework is based upon the interaction of:

  • Areas of Activity (A1-A5),
  • Core Knowledge (K1-K6) and
  • Professional Values (V1-V4).

Your main demonstrable skills and attributes will come from the Areas of Activity (A1-A5) and the Professional Values (V1-V4).

Example answers

V1 Respect individual learners and diverse learning communities and V2 Promote participation in higher education and equality of opportunity for learners, demonstrate your ability to:

  • practice inclusion,
  • work well with others from a variety of backgrounds
  • institute a change to improve a process.

A4 Develop effective learning environments and approaches to student support and guidance demonstrates your ability to:

  • evaluate processes,
  • deliver creative solutions,
  • design successful interventions.

A5 Engage in continuing professional development in subjects/disciplines and their pedagogy, incorporating research, scholarship and the evaluation of professional practices, demonstrates you ability to:

  • develop through reflective practice,
  • take onboard feedback,
  • commitment to continuous professional development.


The UKPSF is a set of professional standards and guidelines for everyone involved in teaching and supporting learning in Higher education.

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