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The Digital Learning Programme

Progress & Activities

The Digital Learning Programme seeks to identify the digital skills, infrastructure and support needed for 21st century learning. We aim to focus on the digital capabilities of our students and staff to help them capitalise on the opportunities an enhanced learning environment will offer.

The Digital Learning Programme draws heavily on the knowledge and experience of staff and students from throughout the University as well as being informed by our peers in the education sector and supporting organisations. Canvas by Instructure has been selected as the new University Virtual Learning Environment (VLE). This significant milestone was achieved thanks to the commitment from students and staff throughout the process.

Professor David Jones:

"The implementation of a new Virtual Learning Environment is a KPI in our Corporate Plan and a key element in enhancing the learning experience for all our students. The procurement of Canvas is a milestone in our ambition to become a digital university." 

Kenny Nicholl, VP Instructure, EMEA:

“We are delighted to welcome Queens University to the global community of millions of teachers and students all using Canvas to deliver and experience exceptional teaching and learning. Canvas is designed to put teachers and students at the centre of and in control of their learning journey and we are confident that this partnership will empower the University to drive and deliver its digital strategy.”

A selection of the activities that have shaped the programme and an overview of facts and figures to date are detailed in the section below.

  • Canvas Pocket Guide Visit the Canvas@Queen’s Blog for lots of useful information about Canvas VLE, the training and support available for staff and students, and quick hints and tips to get you up-to-speed as quickly as possible.
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Facts & Figures

Total number of logins
Last Updated: 04 Mar 2020
Number of Staff with access to Canvas
Number of Students with access to Canvas
Live Modules
Modules in Development (Semester 2 - AY2019/20)
Support tickets actioned
Individuals engaged with Training/Support (since May 2018)

Progress Timeline

  • 2016
  • Jan
    Digital Learning Solution Project initiated
  • May
    Project team and governance structures established
  • May - Jul
    VLE Market Analysis
  • Jul - Dec
    Engaged with other Universities to gather lessons and advice on VLE procurements
  • Jul - Sept
    Early Suppler Engagement to identify key solutions and services available
  • Jul - Mar
    Detailed requirements identification and procurement documentation created
  • Sept - Feb
    Business Case Development and Reviewed
  • 2017
  • Apr
    Business Case Approved
  • Jun - Sept
    Procurement Supplier Evaluation
  • Oct
    Contract finalisations
  • Nov
    Procurement completed, contract awarded to Instructure Global Ltd for their Canvas VLE Service
  • Dec
    Joint technical planning with supplier
  • 2018
  • Jan
    Implementation Plan and Schedule Approved for phased rollout. Technical implementation started. Canvas Acceptance testing by Queens.
  • Feb
    Integration with Queens User Authentication solution. 3rd Party tools integration and testing. Development of Blueprint course templates
  • Mar
    Integration with Qsis. Supplier support structures and agreements established.
    QUB Branding of platform. Development of training workshops and online support materials
  • Apr
    Technical implementation of the Canvas VLE completed
  • Phase 1 Begins
  • May
    83 Early Adoption Modules identified by Queen’s Schools. School access to Canvas for go-live preparation enabled (Semester 1 AY2019/20)
  • Jun
    16 week programme of training available to support module development for Semester 1
  • Jul
    Support Team & resources put in place.
    Ongoing delivery of workshops, Drop-In Clinics and 1-1 support sessions
  • Aug
    Additional suite of support activities offered; Canvas, Coffee & Cake, Webinar Wednesdays, Deeper Dives. Digital Learning Solution Support Model approved
  • Sept
    Student access to Canvas enabled for Early Adoption Modules. Semester 1 modules published.
  • Phase 2 Begins
  • Oct
    97 modules identified by Queen’s Schools. Access to Canvas for go-live preparation enabled. 12 week programme of training available to support module development for Semester 2
  • Nov
    Ongoing delivery of workshops, Drop-In Clinics, 1-1 support sessions, Canvas Coffee & Conversations, Webinar Wednesdays, Deeper Dives
  • Dec
    Support sessions offered to support module build in Canvas ahead of Semester 2
  • 2019
  • Jan
    Student access to Canvas enabled for the Semester 2 Modules. Semester 2 modules published
  • Phase 3 Begins
  • Jan (cont.)
    School access to Canvas enabled for go-live preparation of ALL remaining Qsis modules.

    Full programme of training available to support module development for AY2018/19 including dedicated Canvas Training Away Days offered to each School with Queen's
  • Feb
    Canvas Drop-in Clinics continue on bi-weekly basis to support module development. Steady numbers of Academic and Support staff participating in School based Canvas Training each week. Information Sessions delivered to Administrative Contacts within Schools
  • Mar
    Number of staff attending local School sessions continues to rise. 35 half-day session have been delivered since Jan 2019 with a further 10 half-day session scheduled in coming weeks
  • Apr
    746 individual members of staff (Academic & Support Staff) have attended at least 1 training workshop or support activity since May 2018. The total attendance count at workshops and additional support activities now stands at 1,208
  • May
    The academic year concluded with 177 modules successfully delivered to ~6,600 students during semester 1 and 2 of AY2018/19.
    Administrative staff within Schools provided with the ability to associate staff to Canvas modules via the Queen's Student Information System (Qsis).
  • Jun
    65% of Academic and Support Staff have availed of training/support activities with uptake of virtual classes continuing to prove popular. Over 1000 support enquiries have been processed to date by the System Support team.
  • 2020
  • Phase 3 Ends