Researchers in the School of Social Sciences and Humanities (SSH) are a multi-lingual, multi- and interdisciplinary community, working across the Humanities, Arts and Social Sciences, and bringing together a unique blend of internationally well-connected scholars.

For the Research Excellence Framework (REF, 2014), the current system to assess the quality of UK research, SSH submitted to two panels – ‘Area Studies’ and ‘Modern Languages and Linguistics’. The results released on 18 December 2014 ranked Aston amongst the leading institutions in the UK and achieved some particularly outstanding successes:

  • Area Studies: 81% of the SSH submission has been judged as “world leading or internationally excellent”. This is the 3rd highest percentage in the UK for this unit of assessment.
  • Modern Languages and Linguistics: 60% of the LSS submission has been awarded the highest marks (4*) for research impact. This is the highest 4* percentage in the West Midlands, and places Aston within the top 10 for this unit of assessment regarding impact.
  • Area Studies: The submission is ranked 5th out of 23 institutions in the UK for Area Studies in the overall REF 2014 rankings.
  • Modern Languages and Linguistics: 100% of the LSS submission to this panel has been awarded 4* or 3* for research environment, ranking Aston joint 1st in the UK for this measure.

Integrated, innovative and multidisciplinary

Our distinctive combination of subjects gives the School of Social Sciences and Humanities a unique perspective on language and society, both in their own context and in relation to each other. The school is a closely integrated, innovative, multilingual and multidisciplinary School with an international outlook. Our main research centres, Aston Centre for Europe (ACE), The Aston Institute for Forensic Linguistics (AIFL), The Centre for Critical Inquiry into Society and Culture (CCISC), The Centre for Language Research at Aston (CLaRA) are leaders in their respective fields.

Research by department

Staff in all areas of the School engage in collaborative research and maintain national and international contacts through SSH' research centres and projects.

These centres organise conferences and workshops, host national and international speakers and provide a forum for researchers and research students to conduct and discuss research projects.