Aspire - Recognition of Excellence in Education

Education alongside Research as the Mission of a Medical, Dental and Veterinary School

Invitation to submit for the new ASPIRE pilot study

The ASPIRE-to-Excellence Initiative was established to provide a unique system which encouraged excellence in education in medicine and the healthcare professions by identifying, recognising and rewarding excellence in key aspects of education delivery. To date excellence is recognised in the following areas – Student Engagement, Social Accountability, Assessment of Students, Faculty Development, Simulation, and the Curriculum. The need has been identified to recognise schools where there is evidence of excellence in education not addressed or captured in the six areas specified to date.


At the meeting of the ASPIRE Board in Basel in August it was agreed to establish a new area where excellence in education in a school is recognised – Inspirational approaches to healthcare professions education. Schools will be invited to submit an application on the basis of an approach in their school which is significant and merits recognition through an ASPIRE Award for Excellence. Examples of areas which might be accepted for review would be the learning environment, interprofessional education, recognition of teaching as part of institutional culture, education innovation and research, education in difficult circumstances, patients-as-educators, and education with an international flavour. Submissions would not be restricted to these areas.

Prior to launching the theme with a call for submissions in February 2019, the criteria which might be applied and the review process will be tested with pilot schools. A pilot school will be expected to complete the submission document and provide comments on the process and on the criteria adopted. No awards will be made on the basis of the pilot studies but pilot schools will be invited to bring forward a submission for the first round of awards in 2019, at no cost to the school. Schools who participate in the pilot will make a significant contribution to this important initiative while at the same time engaging in an exercise that might be of local interest to the school with regard to their development. A school’s assistance with the initiative will be recorded on the ASPIRE website.

An expression of interest to serve as a pilot school together with information about the area where excellence is to be assessed should be received by 7th October. Schools to be included in the pilot will be notified by 21st October and a full submission will be required by 18th December.

If your school is interested in participating as a pilot school please contact ASPIRE at [email protected] 

If you require any further information or have queries with regard to ASPIRE or to the pilot study please do not hesitate to contact the ASPIRE Administrator, Farzand Ali at [email protected]