Professor Annabel Kiernan

Pro Vice_Chancellor- Academic Prof

Executive Office

Professor Annabel Kiernan is Pro Vice-Chancellor - Academic at Staffordshire University where her focus is delivering on the University’s strategic priorities, specifically around next generation education and experience.

Professor Kiernan joined Staffordshire University in May 2021. She previously worked at Nottingham Trent University as Deputy Dean for the School of Social Sciences, leading their Education portfolio.

She is committed to improving access and inclusion in education, innovative teaching, and excellence in the student experience. Professor Kiernan is helping to raise the profile of Staffordshire University nationally through workstreams with the Purpose Coalition, Million Plus, Universities UK, ResPublica and the Department for Education and is a regular speaker at national events on skills and lifelong learning.

Professor Kiernan is an advocate of microcredentials – small bite sized units of learning which differ is size, complexity and duration from traditional qualifications – and their ability to play a key part in addressing current and future skills gaps and in supporting access to education.

As part of her remit to refresh the University’s academic strategy, she is helping to position Staffordshire Centre of Learning and Pedagogic Practice (SCoLPP) as a sector influencing pedagogic research and evaluation group.

She is also leading the development of the University’s shift towards hyper-personalised learning using AI functionality and represents the University in the Student Support Re-design project led by HE Student Support Champion, the Student Support Network and Advance HE.

She has also led Staffordshire University’s submission for the Teaching Excellence Framework 2023 and, as a Wave 1 provider, the new Access and Participation Plan.

Professor Kiernan, who has a PhD in policy making theory from the University of Warwick, has extensive experience of Higher Education and has worked as Head of Education for the Faculty of Arts and Humanities at Manchester Metropolitan University, where she was also the Director of the Centre for the Study of Football and its Communities.

She has also held posts at Sheffield Hallam University and at the University of the West of Scotland, where she was Jean Monnet Chair of European Integration and Public Policy.

in the UK for Quality Education

Sustainable Development Goal 4, Times Higher Education Impact Rankings 2023

for Career Prospects

Whatuni Student Choice Awards 2023

for Facilities

Whatuni Student Choice Awards 2023

for Social Inclusion

The Times and The Sunday Times Good University Guide 2023

of Research Impact is ‘Outstanding’ or ‘Very Considerable’

Research Excellence Framework 2021

of Research is “Internationally Excellent” or “World Leading”

Research Excellence Framework 2021

Four Star Rating

QS Star Ratings 2021