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Introducing the University of Leeds’s first Digital Education Annual Report


As a truly unusual and challenging academic year draws to a close, there could not be a better time to reflect on digital education at Leeds.

For the first time, the Digital Education Service has launched a Digital Education Annual Report to celebrate the University’s incredible progress in online teaching between 2019 – 2021.

In recent years, the Service has grown from a small specialist team to an accomplished service of over 90 professionals.   

This growth has only accelerated as other faculties and services across the University have adapted to support the Digital Transformation strategy and rapidly pivoted to deliver remote teaching during the coronavirus outbreak.  

This has been a challenging period, but I am incredibly proud of the way the DES team has risen to this challenge along with the rest of the University. I would also like to take this opportunity to thank colleagues and partners for working with us to achieve so much; next year, together, we will achieve even more.

- Carol Elston, Director - Digital Education Service (DES).  

Over the last two years, more staff and students than ever have used online systems and tools to pursue education at Leeds through studying, teaching and research. They’ve been supported by flexible solutions, engaging content, and increased access to technologically enhanced teaching.

Meanwhile, collaboration and innovation have remained at the heart of what we do. In the inaugural Digital Education Annual Report, discover the University’s leading role in the online learning revolution, and learn more about the partnerships we’ve nurtured in order to disseminate research and deliver world-class teaching all over the world.

Highlights from the report include:

  • Online courses have attracted over 2 million learners from 236 countries worldwide
  • 360% increase in our learners on FutureLearn
  • Delivery of 116 short courses (across FutureLearn and Coursera)
  • Widespread accessibility improvements as a result of improved tools and systems e.g., 630,000 minutes of captioned content on Mediasite; 64,000 alternative format downloads on Ally
  • Increased engagement on Minerva: hosted 14 million materials with 110 million page views
  • Launched 2 fully online degrees in Engineering Management and Artificial Intelligence (with more to come!)

Read the Digital Education Annual Report and join us in celebration of Leeds’s digital journey by sharing the report online. Be sure to use the hashtag #yearofdigitaledu.