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Leadership in Education Awards Programme (LEAP)

The Leadership in Education Awards Programme (LEAP) supports you in documenting and evidencing your teaching excellence, and is an opportunity for you to receive a formal, national qualification for your teaching.

The programme is accredited by AdvanceHE (formerly the Higher Education Academy) and can award Associate, Fellowship, Senior and Principal HEA Fellowships.

The LEAP timeline: From interest to award

 From initial interest to final assessment, here's what you can expect with LEAP:

1. Find out more before you apply

2. Register for a place on LEAP - registration form opened once per year

  • Complete the online LEAP registration form

3. Allocation of place on the programme and access to the online learning resource - by email

4. Book and attend LEAP action learning sets (optional)

 6. Submit your LEAP application - by email

7. Outcome of the application assessment - by email

Important: Please note that all participants should complete their fellowship application within two years of registering with LEAP. If you do not complete within this timeframe, you will need to re-register at the next opportunity.

Which LEAP pathway is for you?

LEAP is divided into four pathways to provide you with the most effective support for the level of fellowship for which you are applying:

LEAP to Associate Fellow Pathway (AFHEA)
  • for those new to teaching, support staff or those who support teaching and learning as a relatively minor part of their role.
LEAP to Fellow Pathway (FHEA)
  • for those with a more substantive teaching and learning support role.
LEAP to Senior Fellow Pathway (SFHEA)
  • for those with a significant teaching leadership role and who have had an influence on professional practice beyond their own teaching.
LEAP to Principal Fellow Pathway (PFHEA)
  • for those who able to demonstrate impact at a strategic level (institutional, national or international context) and a wider commitment to academic practice and leadership in teaching and learning.‌

If you're still unsure which LEAP pathway would be the most suitable for you try the Advance HE fellowship category tool. The fellowship category tool has been designed to assist you in selecting the category of fellowship that is the closest match to your current practice.

What can I do with my HEA fellowship?

Aside from achieving a formal qualification your HEA fellowship allows you to become part of LEAP as an alumnus mentor, assessor or champion. All the roles are undertaken by staff or students who have a clear understanding of the teaching agenda within their discipline and at The University of Manchester, and how this aligns with the UKPSF.

LEAP mentor

LEAP mentors are experienced staff and students who support their colleagues in applying for LEAP. The majority of our mentors have been through LEAP previously and so can provide advice, support and feedback to participants on applications.

LEAP mentors are required to do the following:

  • To hold at least the level of fellowship of the mentee(s).
  • To provide advice, support and feedback to a group of participants on draft applications.
  • To attend the assessor and mentor training once a year. These are held twice a year.

LEAP assessor

All assessors are required to attend LEAP assessor and mentor training. New and inexperienced assessors will be paired with experienced assessors in the first instance to provide mentoring and support, working towards becoming a lead assessor.

LEAP assessors are required to do the following:

  • To hold at least the level of fellowship that requires assessment.
  • To attend the assessor and mentor training once a year (and/or to review the training materials for experienced assessors).
  • To adhere to any deadlines set by the LEAP administrator and to complete all tasks within the allocated timeframe.
  • To assess the application against the descriptors of the UKPSF, providing comments and feedforward to the applicant.
  • To attend the relevant LEAP Recognition Panel, if you are the lead assessor.

LEAP champion

The LEAP Champions Network was formed to provide more points of contact for LEAP across the University of Manchester. Each Faculty is headed by a Faculty Academic Lead and each School has a champion in order to cascade relevant information about LEAP to all communication channels.

LEAP school champions are required to do the following:

  • To act as a local point of reference and guidance for LEAP queries from current and future LEAP participants within individual schools.
  • To provide a local point of reference for assessors and mentors within individual schools.
  • To support the Faculty Academic Lead with the cascading of information about LEAP/information to LEAP from individual schools through face to face meetings, school board meetings, management meetings and online communications.
  • To attend terms meetings with the LEAP Management Group Meetings and LEAP Recognition Panels, if requested by the Faculty Academic Lead.

Find out more about LEAP

How to join

To join the LEAP and gain access to the LEAP Blackboard space please


For more information about the Leadership in Education Awards Programme please contact the LEAP Administrator


tel 0161 275 7565