The final date for submission of applications has now passed (30 November 2017)

Thank you to all the teams for your submissions.

The national learning impact awards, co-ordinated through the National Forum, aim to support institutional efforts to promote, learn from and extend the reach of excellent practice in teaching and learning across all disciplines. To date, the National Forum has led the development of two national learning impact award phases. The first rounds of the student-led Teaching Hero Awards were completed in September 2014 and 2016, and one round of the institution-led Teaching Expert Awards was initiated and presented in 2015.

The National Forum is now delighted to announce the third national learning impact award type, the DELTA Award. This award type aims to add a crucial, discipline-led dimension to Ireland’s national approach to identifying excellence in teaching, augmenting the voice and perspectives of higher education students and their institutions.

The award will be presented to discipline groups who can demonstrate a record of excellence in teaching and learning enhancement and who commit to an ongoing, clearly articulated, shared process of continued enhancement.

The DELTA Award will recognise and celebrate disciplines for their achievements and commitment, with particular reference to their discipline-relevant pedagogical contexts, requirements, challenges and innovations. A key focus will be on enabling disciplines to ensure that teaching and learning enhancement can also be effectively linked to other core activities – including research and scholarship – in ways that have clear benefits for learners. It will assist disciplines to link teaching and learning developments coherently with key relevant institutional, national and international drivers, while also enabling a discipline- and context-specific approach to teaching and learning enhancement.

Click here for full details of the DELTA awards

The Awards Application Process

Phase 1 –  Expression of Interest

The expression of interest is a brief submission that:

  • Identifies and provides a description of the discipline group
  • Outlines their key achievements and the impact that they have observed to date that distinguishes them
  • Outlines the rationale and drivers behind the commitment they have, and the contributions they will continue to make
  • Identifies the body of evidence that the discipline group would call on and which will be provided freely at the next phase

The expression of interest must be submitted by May 30th @5pm   All expressions of interest will be reviewed by an international review panel of disciplinary experts.  The review panel will identify the submissions to be invited to progress to the second phase to develop the full application for a DELTA award ( June 15th 2017 @ 12pm).

Please click here to visit the submission of interest online submissions form.

A webinar outlining the DELTA Awards expression of interest process was delivered on Monday 10th April. View Recording | View Slides

Phase 2 –  Full Submission of Application for a Delta Award 

All those progressing to Phase 2 will be invited to attend a scheduled face-to-face workshop to discuss the submission process on the June 19th 2017 (Venue TBC).

Full applications for the DELTA Awards 2017 must be submitted through the DELTA Award online interface available for submissions for Phase 2 applications from June 15th 2017.

If you are considering submitting an application under the DELTA award and you have any queries please contact

What kind of submission is required for the DELTA Award?  

All submissions should centre on teaching and learning enhancement (T&LE). T&LE focuses on improving teaching that has a positive impact on students’ experience of learning. It includes a planned series of explicit actions for enhancement set firmly within the institutional and disciplinary context – strengthening, informing and complementing the existing quality and enhancement processes.

What are the specific elements required for submissions?

There are five key elements in the application form for the DELTA Award:

Taking stock:  Where are you now?

DELTA Award applicants should demonstrate that they have taken stock of their group’s current approaches and achievements in teaching and learning, describing the teaching and learning provision within their discipline, and demonstrating a clear commitment to teaching and learning enhancement. Drivers for change should be identified.

Looking to the future:  Where do you want to be?

Applicants need to declare key enhancement priorities, for a defined period (three years), for their discipline group. Identify key targets under each/some of the following five categories:

  • Strategy and Capacity Building

Leadership, Policy Development, and Professional Development of Staff

  • Design of Learning

Designing Curriculum, Connections and Collaboration; Learning Environment

  • Teaching and Learning Practice

Engaging Teaching/Learning Approaches, Supporting Students in Transition and integrating Blended/Online Approaches

  • Assessment OF/FOR/AS Learning

Assessment Purposes and their Rationale

  • Evidence-Based Informed Approach

Evaluation, Scholarship of Teaching and Learning and Research-Informed Teaching

Priorities and their associated targets should be authentic and achievable in your context. Targets can be prioritised against particular categories. An indication of how these priorities will be evaluated should also be included.

Planning and action for enhancement:   How will you get there?

Effective teaching and learning enhancement requires a considered, well-resourced implementation plan that identifies key indicators of success and outlines how these indicators will be achieved in a way that is sustainable, collaborative across staff within the group, and takes account of the institutional and disciplinary context and priorities.

Describing a case study of innovation: What have you done?

As part of their application, the discipline group must include a case study (1000-word max.) of an innovative enhancement that they have led and implemented locally and which has had a positive, demonstrable impact on student learning.


DELTA Awards Launch
21 March 2017

Webinar on Expression of Interest
10 April 2017 @ 2.30pm

Submission of Expression of Interest
30 May 2017 @5pm

Online Interface for Phase 2 Submissions Opens
15 June 2017

Notification of Submissions to continue to Phase 2 – Full Application Development
15 June 2017       

Face to Face Information Workshop for Phase 2
19 June 2017

Final Date for Submission of Applications
30 November 2017 @ 12 noon

Presentation of Awards
21 March 2018