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Submission system data requirements

The deadline for submissions to the REF from UK higher education institutions passed on 29 November 2013. The information on this page relates to the submissions phase of the exercise.

The information on this page will enable institutions to prepare data to import to the REF submission system and provides further details of the data required in submissions, extending the guidance provided in the 'guidance on submissions' and 'panel criteria' documents.

Data requirements for REF Import files

This document provides a complete list of mandatory and optional information requirements for REF submissions and will enable UK higher education institutions to develop import files.

This document was updated in September 2013.   

Import file templates

REF import files in XML, Microsoft Access and Microsoft Excel formats (previously located on this page) are available.

Output information requirements

The Excel document below sets out the specific information that will be required for different types of research outputs. This provides additional information to the generic requirements set out in Part 3 Section 2 of 'guidance on submissions'.

This document was updated in May 2013. The 'Guidance on fields' tab now contains information on mandatory fields for pending publications. 

Output information requirements (updated May 2013)

Download the 11.Output_requirements as MS Excel Spreadsheet (33 KB)

Additional information for outputs in UOA11

Sub-panel 11: Computer Science and Informatics have requested that HEIs provide a classification for each output submitted in UOA11, to assist the allocation of outputs for assessment. The classification should take the form <XX> where X is a 2 digit number from 01 to 33 based on the list of research specialisms, below. This classification should be entered as the first text in the ‘additional information’ field in the REF2 form. Further guidance is provided in the list of specialisms.

List of research specialisms for UOA11

Download the sp11: research categories as MS Word (149 KB)

REF form templates

The Impact template (REF3a), Impact case studies (REF3B) and the Environment template (REF5) must be submitted as PDF documents. Institutions may use the templates provided, with or without borders (for further information please see the associated FAQ). These templates are also available within the submission system. 

Impact template (form REF3a)

Download the REF3a: Impact Template as MS Word (63 KB) 

Impact template without borders (added September 2013)

Download the Impact template REF3a (no borders) as MS Word (64 KB)

Impact case studies (form REF3b)

Download the REF3b: Impact case study template as MS Word (64 KB) 

Impact case studies without borders (added September 2013)

Download the Impact case study REF3b no borders as MS Word (65 KB)

Environment template (form REF5)

Download the REF5: Environment template as MS Word (64 KB)

Environment template without borders (added September 2013)

Download the Environment template REF5 (no borders) as MS Word (66 KB)