Stirling lecturer to decide on UK standards for the teaching of economics

Back to news
Dr Paul Cowell
Dr Paul Cowell

A University of Stirling lecturer has been appointed to review the academic standard of economics degrees throughout the UK.

Dr Paul Cowell, economics lecturer at the University of Stirling Management School (SMS), will sit on the economics advisory group for QAA – the independent body that monitors and advises on standards and quality in UK higher education.

The QAA typically reviews degree subjects every five to seven years to establish a new benchmarking statement. This statement, written by subject experts, describes what graduates might reasonably be expected to know, do and understand at the end of their studies. 

Dr Cowell, who is co-director of the SMS undergraduate economics programme, said: “I’m honoured to have been appointed as a member of the QAA Advisory Group for economics. I am part of a fantastic team that will review the standards and curriculum of economics in the UK, at a time when the skills of an economist are critically important to society.

“It is an exciting, yet profound, responsibility to review and revise the standards, and I believe my appointment is a reflection of the exceptional standards for teaching excellence, curriculum development and pedagogic innovation that we employ in our own economics programme and across SMS.”

Economics at the University of Stirling is ranked top five in the UK and second in Scotland (The Guardian University Guide 2022).

Dr Cowell added: “Current and future students should be assured that our highly ranked programmes in economics are not only taking into account the latest developments in the discipline, but they are also helping to set the standards by which they are taught.”

Dean of SMS, Professor Kevin Grant, said: “We are delighted Dr Cowell has been appointed to update the QAA Subject Benchmark Statement in economics: this is testament to his knowledge, skills, passion and expertise in helping students to develop and succeed.

“His knowledge will help our graduates to gain the skills, knowledge and attitudes necessary to become successful in their chosen careers.”