ARC Assessment Process & Bandings

Stages of the assessment process

  • Firstly, the proposal is reviewed by ‘detailed assessors’ with experience within the research field relevant to the proposal. Each detailed assessor provides ratings and comments against the selection criteria.
  • Secondly, the detailed assessor comments are forwarded to the applicant for review. The applicant then has the opportunity to submit a rejoinder in response to the detailed assessor comments.
  • Next, the ARC College of Experts members assigned to the proposal as carriages finalise their ratings taking into account the detailed assessor ratings/comments and the rejoinder.
  • Within RMS the detailed assessor and carriage ratings are combined to give an overall proposal score and ranking within the discipline panel.
  • Finally, the ARC College of Experts discipline panel meets to discuss and compare proposals at the selection meeting and provide funding recommendations to the CEO.

Why does my final assessment differ so much from the assessors comments?

There are a number of reasons that there may be an apparent difference between the selection criterion bandings and the overall proposal bandings provided in the feedback spreadsheets.

Whilst the bandings for the individual selection criteria are based on the detailed assessor and carriage ratings, the overall proposal banding is based on the whole assessment process as described above. Selection criteria are weighted in each scheme according to the weightings in the relevant funding rules, meaning that some criteria contribute more strongly to the overall proposal score than others.

Furthermore, in order to ensure equity for all candidates, general assessor scores are normalised before calculating the overall proposal scores.