Applying for an award

Advance HE’s Athena SWAN Charter was established in 2005 to encourage and recognise commitment to advancing the careers of women in science, technology, engineering, maths and medicine (STEMM) employment in higher education and research.

In May 2015 the charter was expanded to recognise work undertaken in arts, humanities, social sciences, business and law (AHSSBL), and in professional and support roles, and for trans staff and students. The charter now recognises work undertaken to address gender equality more broadly, and not just barriers to progression that affect women.

Process for applying
  • Applications for Advance HE's Athena SWAN awards are accepted in April and November each year.
  • Applicants must inform Advance HE via email of their intention to submit an application two months in advance of each deadline. In your email to Advance HE, please state at which level the application will be made (Bronze, Silver or Gold) and whether this is a renewal, upgrade or new application. Please also state a contact name and email address that Advance HE can use for any communications regarding the application.
  • There is a small application cost for each departmental submission. You can find out more about this here.
  • More information can be found about this in the guide available to download on the right-hand side of this page.
Types of Award


This is the starting point towards promoting gender equality and addressing any challenging areas in your department. You should start with a gender equality assessment followed by a four year plan with future actions supported by a self-assessment team.
You can apply straight for a Silver award without being awarded Bronze first.


You should provide clear evidence of implementing actions that promote gender equality and be able to demonstrate the impact these have had. You should also demonstrate achievements and a strong commitment from leadership in promoting the charters principles.
You can apply straight for a Silver award without being awarded Bronze first.


Impact within and beyond the organisation and can provide evidence to show exemplary achievements in gender equality and also be promoters of good practice in the community. Applications should show how the principles of the charter are completely embedded in the institution.
Further guidance on Gold Applications

What to include

Download the Athena SWAN handbook and application form to see what information is required in your submission.

Submission timeline
Timescales Action required
3/4 months before deadline (minimum) Organisational units that are unsure about whether to submit as a department, faculty, school or similar should contact Advance HE's team.

2 months before deadline

Last working day September/February, 5pm (deadline for intention to submit)

Applicants should inform Advance HE of their intention to submit. An email reminder will be sent out to the JiscMail list and key contacts.

Please click here to inform Advance HE of your intention to submit.

Last working day April/November, 5pm (deadline) Submissions should be sent in PDF format to:
Late submissions that are not already agreed with Advance HE will not be considered.
5 working days after deadline Institutions and departments wishing for their submissions to be assessed in colour should send ten colour copies to arrive by this date.
2 months after deadline Awards panels take place. Supplementary information may be requested.
5 months after deadline Results are sent to applicants. Feedback is sent to unsuccessful applicants.
Applicants that receive awards should publish their submission on their website and inform Athena SWAN of the associated web address.
Any personal or confidential information may be removed from the submission prior to publication.
6 months after deadline Feedback is sent for applications which received a lower level of award than applied for.
7 months after deadline Feedback is sent for applications which were successful at the level applied for.

The timeline given above is indicative and is subject to change.

Data to support your submission

Information on Student and Staff Data to support the submission can be found here:

To find out more about our Equality, Diversity & Inclusion work, contact the HR team at

To find out more about Athena SWAN, visit their website