National Teaching Fellow and Collaborative Award for Teaching Excellence

About the Awards  

National Teaching Fellow (NTF) and Collaborative Award for Teaching Excellence (CATE) celebrate excellent practice and outstanding achievement in learning and teaching in higher education. These schemes are well established and recognised in the sector – the first NTF Awards were made in 2000 and the first CATE awards in 2016.

As with our own ‘University of Leeds Teaching Awards’ these are competitive schemes with no guarantee of a successful outcome for each applicant. This distinguishes them from professional recognition for student education – Associate, Fellow, Senior and Principal Fellowships awarded by Advance HE and overseen and supported locally through our Professional Recognition in Student Education (PRiSE) scheme. The latter are not competitive: if your application demonstrates that you meet the criteria you gain your professional recognition.

How we select our nominees

We can nominate up to 3 NTF applicants and 1 CATE application each year. We primarily identify our potential nominees through our University Teaching Award winners and LITE Fellows, but as we want to ensure we don’t miss other potential nominees, we are also keen to hear from colleagues beyond these groups who are interested in being considered. The nominees will be confirmed each year by the DVC Student Education in consultation with OD&PL and our external advisor, taking account of the award criteria and a commitment to be representative of the diversity of our student educator population.

How we support our nominees

The nominees are supported by the OD&PL Student Education team working alongside an experienced external adviser and an adviser drawn from our previous NTF or CATE award winners. The support provided includes guidance on completing the application form, opportunities to share work in progress and receive feedback, as well ensuring an understanding of the requirements and format. OD&PL also produces the University’s supporting nomination statements in partnership with the DVC for Student Education.

Attend a briefing session to find out more:

University of Leeds Briefing Session  3 November 2021, 2.00 – 3.45 pm 

This session is co-facilitated by OD&PL and our external advisor for these Awards Peter Hartley (NTF) – read more about Peter’s experience (link opens a new webpage) and his reflections on the benefits of teaching awards

The session is organised in two parts. The first half, designed for potential applicants and senior leaders and colleagues who have Student Education leadership roles is intended to provide current information about the Advance HE ‘National Teaching Fellowships’ (NTF) and the ‘Collaborative Awards for Teaching Excellence’ (CATE). The second half, beginning at 2:55 after a short break, is aimed at prospective teaching award nominees and will provide guidance on the nature of winning applications. You may wish to only attend the portion of the event that is relevant/ of interest to you, we recommend potential applicants attend the whole event. 

Further details and booking (link opens a new page in our course catalogue) 

Advance HE Briefings 

Advance HE provides annual briefings for the NTF and CATE awards. We will share further details and the booking links for this year once these are available. This information will also be published on the Advance HE NTF and Advance HE CATE webpages.

Our NTF and CATE Award Holders


2021 Dr Alison Voice 

2020 Professor Paul Taylor 

2017 Professor James Pickering 

2017 Dr Samamtha Pugh 

2016 Dr Ralph Hallet (no longer at the University of Leeds) 

2016 Professor Sarah Underwood  

2015 Dr David Lewis 

2015 Professor Nigel Lockett 

2013 Professor Andrea Jackson 

2013 Professor Simon Lightfoot 

2012 Professor Neil Morris 

2012 Professor Christina Leston Bandeira (awarded whilst working at the University of Hull) 

2010 Professor Denise Bower  

2009 Professor Martin Levesley 

2008 Dr Joanna Drugan (no longer at University of Leeds) 

2008 Dr Kate Exley 

2007 Professor Graeme Gooday 

2006 Professor Chris Megone 

2006 George McDonald Ross (no longer at University of Leeds) 

2006 Professor Trudie Roberts 

2005 Professor Mike Savage (no longer at University of Leeds) 

2005 Chris Butcher (no longer at University of Leeds) 

2004 Professor Deborah Murdoch Eaton (no longer at University of Leeds) 

2003 Professor Michael Manogue 

2002 Professor Pauline Kneale no longer at University of Leeds) 

2001 Professor Ian Hughes (no longer at University of Leeds) 

2001 Emeritus Professor Mick Wallis (awarded whilst working at Loughborough University) 


2021 The Capstone Experience Team, led by Dr David Lewis  

Find out below what some of our previous NTF Winners said about the award and their advice for colleagues. You can also read more about all the award winners at Advance HE NTF winners and Advance HE CATE winners.

Dr Alison Voice, Senior Lecturer in the School of Physics and Astronomy and leader of the Physics Education Research Group

“Being awarded a National Teaching Fellowship is special in so many ways.  Firstly, being invited by senior staff at Leeds to apply for an NTF is confidence boosting in itself, that others recognise what you do, and acknowledge that you are worthy of making the application. Secondly, receiving feedback from the reviewers at Advance HE affirms that external educators see the value of your work, and its impact on students, staff and stakeholders in the field.  It is also nice that Advance HE makes a big splash about celebrating the achievements of all its new NTFs, showing they really value the scheme and the achievement. This publicity is also a good way to further extend your national profile.

There are several networks run by Advance HE specifically for NTFs which you are invited to join when you win. This immediately connects you with a diverse group of people across all HE institutions and disciplines, but all with one thing in common, being an NTF. And for me, the real excitement is the national recognition that the award of NTF brings, which facilitates the development of new and extended collaborations.

My advice to colleagues developing their teaching profile would be:

  • Keep an ongoing record of what you have done, at Leeds and in the national/international arena.  It’s hard to recall it all when needed!
  • Keep a record of nice things people say about you. This is useful evidence/quotes for your application.
  • Depending on your career stage, elect to be mentored, or offer to mentor other staff. This will help tease out your talents and skills. It’s often easier to have others recognise and extol your virtues. And the success of your mentee is evidence of your impact.
  • Try to involve yourself in the national scene, whether through discipline committees, conferences, workshops etc.  Offer to take on a specific role.  This leads to impact and recognition of your work nationally/internationally.
  • Apply for funding for teaching initiatives.  Even small amounts show your success and impact.”

Professor Sarah Underwood, Director of Executive and Professional Education at Leeds University Business School

National Teaching Fellow 2016

“For me, becoming a National Teaching Fellow was instrumental in providing the confidence to go ahead with a Professorial promotion application at the University of Leeds. It still feels quite rare to have such a public and high profile recognition of your teaching experience and the efforts that go into continually innovating your approach so this award was really special to me.

It was immensely beneficial to have the external validation and visibility in the school/University as various senior people were involved in the NTF application and the DVC for Student Education even attended the award ceremony! The NTF award was the primary way I was able to evidence having a ‘sustained record of high quality teaching’ and the examples, quotes and evidence I gathered for the NTF application have been used many times since. (And just in case you were wondering, I got the Professor promotion!)”

 Professor Paul Taylor, Dean: Student Education (Experience)

National Teaching Fellow 2020

“Preparing my NTF claim was a valuable exercise in reflecting on my own career. For the last decade, my professional development has focused on leadership in University teaching. I have completed the Leadership Programmes of both the University of Warwick and of UoL. Beyond these, I have striven to develop through my own scholarly research on leadership themes, engaging with colleagues, the literature and the international pedagogic community to explore new approaches and adopt best practice.

I came to realise that my personal development as a leader in Higher Education has led me to my characteristic approach. Firstly, initiatives I lead are always grounded in critical pedagogic thinking, making it easier to articulate my ideas and increasing the likelihood of success. Secondly, I build effective collaborations across and beyond my institution, bringing together like-minded colleagues and students to work towards our shared goals. Recognition of these ideas through my NTF award has given me increased confidence to take on new challenges.

In terms of building my profile, the single best thing I did I think was to become a part of the ISSoTL community, attending the annual conferences on a regular basis and joining and leading special interest groups. I have genuinely made friends (and great colleagues) for life through ISSoTL. My work with them and their testimony for my claim was (and still is) very important.”