AN Evangelical Christian Training College has been recognised for its excellent teaching with a prestigious award.

Moorlands College, based in Sopley, has been rewarded for meeting rigorous national quality requirements for higher education when it was presented with a Teaching Excellence Framework Provisional Award by the Department of Education.

The Government recently confirmed the results of the Teaching Excellence Framework (TEF) that recognises and rewards excellent teaching in UK Higher Education providers.

Moorlands College, the first independent theology college to opt into the scheme, has now been awarded a provisional TEF award. It means that Moorlands College has met the quality expectations required for TEF eligibility and is now in the formal government teaching excellence league table.

The TEF has been introduced as a way of informing students’ choices about what and where to study, to raise esteem for teaching, to reward a provider’s excellent teaching and to meet the needs of employers and businesses.

The Higher Education Funding Council for England works with the Quality Assurance Agency for Higher Education and is responsible for implementing the TEF according to the Department of Education’s specification.

Ian Kirby, vice principal at Moorlands College, said: “I’m really delighted to see that Moorlands College has taken the next step forward as a leading provider of theological training for Christian ministry.

"Receiving a TEF rating demonstrates that we are a robust institution, providing a learning experience that is recognised within the world renowned UK Higher Education section.”

In 2015 building work began on a £3million redevelopment of Sopley's Christian College. The former dining hall was demolished to make way for a new community hub with windows looking out over the New Forest and the work was completed in the autumn.