Digital Education & Student Life Highlights Report 2019

Digital Education

Supporting the Digital Education Transformation Programme (DETP) across 5 strands of activity

Digital Leadership & Governance - communication, policies and guidelines and communities of practice.

Digital Capabilities - making digital learning resources inclusive, available and accessible to enable everyone to create, collaborate and communicate digitally.

Digitally Enhanced Teaching, Learning & Assessment - exploring new approaches, enhancing practice, informed by academic practice and community feedback and sharing knowledge on how to use digital tools for the benefit of all.

Digitally Enhanced Environments - adaptable digital learning spaces and tools that allow everyone to move between physical and digital environments.

Digital Communities - to share knowledge, practice and outputs, working collaboratively, inspiring and enabling others.

2019 Highlights

The Concept Suite (NDH3028)

The digitally enhanced active learning space, for up to 25 students, is now available for teaching. The suite features moveable podium/battery powered recharging stations, smart lights, interactive screens (Samsung Flips), adaptable spaces with moveable walls and digital wall (with Nureva Span).

Academic Feedback

"The room has all (and more) of the facilities we need in order to conduct the interactive workshops"
"The room was clearly inducted into and the support both in person and through email has been excellent, and the students are really excited about the room and its possibilities"
Samsung Flip resource..."These were brilliant as they got students engaged in getting ideas down quickly and intuitively whilst also allowing them to save the work."

Student Feedback

"A more appealing learning space. Much more encouraging for group collaborations!"
"It was easy to work in a group and confer with the use of the touch screens, also easy to follow presentations with the double screens at the front."
"Would like a concept suite in every area/floor."

Pilot Pathfinder Projects

Exploring new approaches for digital education to help inform future activities and Next Generation developments, through a series of pilot projects in 2019.

Pilots include...

Student App Development Platform

The Countdown to Lincoln app, was an innovative pilot using a low code app development platform (Mendix). The pilot was delivered in partnership with Digital Education and a small group of student developers from the School of Computer Science.

The Countdown to Lincoln app was designed as a way of rapidly creating an app-based learning resource for pre-arrival students; this approach was well received by both the student developers and the users of the app; a full evaluation is ongoing.

WordPress - The Lincoln First Year

Using the Learn Dash plug-in within Wordpress, a sister site was created alongside the Countdown to Lincoln app. Also aimed at new undergraduate students, this new learning resource was piloted within Psychology, Maths, Architecture and Accountancy and Finance.

The pilot offered a web-based course for new student to support their confidence and understanding of studying at University. Evaluation of the user experience and tool capabilities is currently in progress and will inform further use of the tool and potential extension for 20/21 new entrants.

Blackboard Chat Bot project

Digital Education explored opportunities for the use of artificial intelligence technologies, such as chat bots, in Higher Education.

The initial Chat Bot was designed around pre-existing help and support documents which are available on Blackboard and over 70 additional questions were written based on the helpsheets and launched on all Blackboard modules and the main ‘My Bb Sites’ page within Blackboard.

Lessons learned have been shared and helped to inform the ICT chat bot project development. The Bb chat bot pilot will close and migrate to the ICT chat bot platform in the New Year.

New Toolkits

Video Based Learning

Available to staff to use covering three areas of practice:

  • Getting Started with Lecture Recording
  • Going Further: Recording Video Based Learning Outside the Classroom
  • Advanced: Designing and implementing video feedback practices

Migrating to LinkedIn Learning

Lynda.com migrated to LinkedIn Learning in 2019.

Currently (Dec 2019) there are 2581 activate users (an increase on the same point in 2018 and rising), spending an average of 1hr 4mins on the site.

Throughout 2019 over 4,000 courses (or 23,536 videos) were viewed.

LinkedIn Learning has also been used by other departments of the University:

  • Library for student workshops
  • Careers as part of the Lincoln Award
  • ICT providing support and help sheets for Office 365.

LinkedIn Learning has also been used by the Lincoln International School of Business for embedding digital skills into their reading week, along with other schools working to incorporate the resource within their curriculum including the Lincoln School of Film and Media, Computer Science and Robotics and Design.

New Digital Support Environments

Supporting the launch of a new e-learning platform for Medical students

Digital Education at Lincoln is also supporting the new Lincoln Medical School in partnership with the University of Nottingham to prepare new digital learning platforms (for teaching and assessment) the first intake of medical students at Lincoln.

Further activities for 2020 include increasing digital support for the Online Programmes and Degree Apprenticeships.

Lecture Recording Guidance

Updated guidance has been shared with all schools and on Bb. Written with the input of academic colleagues, and UCU and SU reps, the new guidance, whilst recognising that not all teaching activities are suitable for recording, encourages the adoption of lecture recording as an additional learning support tool.

Over the first 4 weeks of term, there was a 55% increase in the number of videos uploaded to Panopto (when compared to the same period in 2018)

Advice for students

Support skills Development

Microsoft Pilots

MS Teams for learning Pilot - exploring the use of Microsoft Teams in the curriculum. Pilot study's are being undertaken with NCFM, Lincoln School of Film and Media and History.

Microsoft Specialist Skills - offering an internationally recognised certificate of digital skills this programme pilot was launched in 2019. Ninety seven students have enrolled with the first examination point planned for January 2020.

Poll Everywhere

Improve engagement within seminars and lectures with this audience response tool.

Further rollout

Available across all teaching spaces on campus and can be downloaded to other corporate machines through the software centre.

249 staff are now registered users, an increase of 31% in 2019

4,647 Individual Poll questions (7603 in total over three years)

101,141 Individual responses on Poll Everywhere


Over 140 colleagues and students attended this year's digital showcase, supporting the embedding of digital content inside the curriculum. The day highlighted new and innovative ways of using digital resources to support and inspire new approaches to teaching.

Staff Support

DigiED/LALT Education Weeks

9 different digital workshops were run over each CPD week, sharing practice and tools with over 250 members of staff.

81% year on year increase in attendance for the July CPD week (based on 2018 and 2019 event data) .

169% year on year increase in attendance for the September CPD week (based on 2018 and 2019 event data).

95% of questionnaire respondents indicated that they would be likely to attend a future session.

A key focus for the team this year has been the promotion of accessible learning resource creation (in response to new legislative changes)

Activity Blended Curriculum Design

ABC workshops engaged with 227 academic colleagues for 111 modules. Engagement is across all Colleges looking at programmes of study including Computer Science, Design, Education, Health and Social Care, Food Manufacturing, Law, LSFM, Marketing and Tourism, Music, Pharmacy, Sports Science and Work Based Distance Learning.

In 2019 the Activity Blended Curriculum Design process has been adopted into UoL's Office of Quality, Standards and Partnership website enabling colleague to consider digital opportunities when undertaking validation/re-validation/modification changes of programmes of study.

“Honestly, this is a brilliant exercise and I thoroughly enjoyed myself. I do feel that I'm good at designing modules, but this visual process made me realise that there were still issues with how I deliver learning resources, and it's been a real eyeopener. Thank you!”

Online Support

Over 2700 digital education enquiries has also been passed onto the Digital Education Developers via the ICT Helpdesk, as well as the team receiving queries directly from colleagues and students, and working with Digital Leads to support College led requests.

Video Support Assistants (VSAs)

A joint Digital Education & Student Life activity to create video resources to support learning and promote the student experience.

In 2019, 286 videos were created, working with 25 departments and around 150 members of staff.

Notable activity included Digital Student Life working on a series of Truth Booth videos for Student Affairs on the topic of hate crime,

and a project to help promote the outputs of Lincoln research as an engaging learning resource.

Digital Student Life

Funding and Collaborations

Working with Student Wellbeing (UoL) - OfS funding of circa £350k (over a two year period) awarded for the development of apps, digital tools and content to support transitional Student Wellbeing.

Library – Study Happy Project Spring 2019, organising and running a series of events jointly with the Library aimed at alleviating student stress and anxiety (including creating video resources and providing a space where students could leave their concerns/issues and tips around wellbeing) in order that comments could be shared amongst a wider audience.

Expert Self Care working collaboratively with an external company to create an International Student App to support students coming to the UK to study.

Due for release early in 2020.

Student Content Creators

Around 50 students have worked with us during 2019 developing content and feeding back on our approach and the development of digital content and tools. English and Journalism and LSFM students have significantly contributed to the content of the Student Life channel.


Word Press -development of School Blog sites to develop a sense of community and encourage collaboration between staff and students.


Created with images by Marius Masalar - "untitled image" • Lee Ferrell - "untitled image" • CJ Dayrit - "Ideaful" • Dominik Scythe - "untitled image" • Hitesh Choudhary - "artificial intelligence is on it’s way" • David Condrey - "Movie camera" • Luis Melendez - "We were on a medical mission for spine surgery in Monterrey, México. Our team took care of more than 60 patients all over Mexico with a group of volunteers including doctors, nurses, admin team, and more…" • Tadas Sar - "untitled image" • Mikael Kristenson - "auditorium" • Alvaro Reyes - "untitled image" • Sam McGhee - "A snap shot from our film set while producing a documentary series for the Holocaust Center for Humanities. Here we are interviewing a local high school about their experience with some of the Center’s teaching materials." • Tim Foster - "Yoga at sunset on the coast" • Mimi Thian - "untitled image" • Webaroo.com.au - "untitled image"