Enhancement-led Institutional Review (ELIR) is an external review of the effectiveness of our approach to improving the student learning experience. The review is undertaken by Quality Assurance Agency Scotland (QAA Scotland) and all universities in Scotland are reviewed on a four year cycle.

The university is currently preparing for its next ELIR which will happen in 2021

Why is ELIR important? 

  • It helps us improve what we do, and how we do it.
  • It leads to a published judgement on the quality and academic standards of the university.
  • It has a direct impact on our reputation – regional, national and international.
  • Engagement with ELIR is a statutory requirement, and one of SFC’s conditions of funding.

What does ELIR involve? 

The university submits a detailed self-evaluation (called the Reflective Analysis) and supporting evidence to QAA. An external panel then visits the university to explore themes arising from the Reflective Analysis with groups of staff and students before reporting on areas of good practice, and areas for development. 

ELIR Infographic


When will ELIR happen? 

We are currently drafting the Reflective Analysis, to be submitted in Summer 2021. The panel visits will happen in Autumn 2021.

How will I be involved in ELIR? 

  • You may be approached for input to the Reflective Analysis and/or examples of practice in your area. 
  • You may contribute indirectly through discussions during staff development activities, workshops, webinars, committee meetings. 
  • You may participate in annual monitoring activities which will form part of the evidence base for the Reflective Analysis.
  • You will be invited to comment and feedback on the draft Reflective Analysis during Semester 2. 
  • You may be invited to participate in one of the staff meetings with the panel next year. 

How far have we travelled since our last ELIR? 

You can review our ELIR Reflective Analysis 15-16 and the QAA outcome report and one-year follow up reports are available on the QAA website. These provide a great starting point for the reflective process – much has changed! 


A message from HISA about ELIR...

Please watch the video below to hear a message about ELIR from the HISA (Highlands and Islands Student Association) VP (Vice Principal) for Higher Education

Who is leading on ELIR in the university? content Rhiannon Tinsley, Academic Registrar

Who is leading on ELIR in the university?

The ELIR Steering Group, chaired by Rhiannon Tinsley, reports to Quality Assurance and Enhancement Committee. 

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