Information Services Division


You Said, We Did 2019

In response to staff and student feedback, here are some of the improvements we’ve made recently, or that are coming soon. Please keep the feedback coming so we know where to focus our improvements.

General IT


You Said:

More, better, faster!

Wi-Fi icon
We Did:

There is an ongoing Wi-Fi Expansion project to provide more, better and faster Wi-Fi to staff and students.  New high capacity wireless controllers have been installed as part of this project.

This project has seen the deployment of over 100 access points in 22 Gordon Street, Shropshire House, 44 Wicklow Street and 10 Montague Street utilising Wi-Fi 5 technology, meaning increased data speeds directly to devices. Wi-Fi 6 is coming soon for even greater speeds!

In halls of residence, the Wi-Fi in Astor College has been upgraded as part of the refurbishment of the building with over 300 new access points installed. Other halls are to follow as the project progresses.

Over the next 12 months, we plan to deploy another 400 access points in the central Bloomsbury area, including the Student Centre, Bloomsbury Theatre, SSES, Anthropology and LCN providing full coverage throughout these buildings.

Student Inductions

You Said:

We want to know about all available IT services when we start at UCL.

Graphic with many IT-related words
We Did:

At start of session 19/20 we visited faculties and schools to give IT induction talks to approximately 6,000 students. Feedback on this was really positive.

Desktop @ UCL

You Said:

Having a managed desktop is great as long as it’s kept up to date.

Computer icon
We Did:

All student computers and loan laptops have been upgraded to latest version of Windows (10) and 98% of staff D esktop@ UCL computers have been upgraded with the rest to be completed by February 2020. New Windows 10 features released to all Windows 10 managed desktop machines.

Mac @ UCL

You Said:

Mac support please.

Mac logo
We Did:

We have improved our support for bring your own Mac devices, with updated information for accessing central services and additional training for support staff. A managed Mac service has been released to support open access teaching spaces and a managed Mac service is being developed for staff devices.

Print @ UCL

You Said:

More printers with better features.

Printer icon
We Did:

This year there has been a refresh of 650 devices with a much improved user interface. Mobile print has also been improved.

During our busiest quarters, on average we save 8000 litres of water, 50 trees, 23.5k kg CO2. This is achieved by the user deletion of jobs and system deletion of old jobs.

In 2020 we will be introducing guest printing, easy fault reporting and improved accessibility.


You Said:

More collaboration tools and support.

Collaboration icon
We Did:

ISD is developing a Communication and Collaboration service – a key component of this has been the release of Microsoft Teams, where there are now over 7,000 active students and staff users. Teams provides a common workspace for sharing information and documents to peers inside and outside UCL and hosts audio and video-based meetings for up to 250 colleagues. Teams can be created by logging into UCL’s Office 365 platform.

Another step this year is to upgrade SharePoint to a modern look, improving adoption and usability.


You Said:

More consistency, easier navigation, fewer broken links.

We Did:

We have implemented a new content management system with more UCL web pages on it than ever before – consistent look and feel, easier to use, and fully accessible.

We collaborated with Student and Registry Services to create a new website for students, bringing everything together in one place.

Learning & Teaching IT

Virtual Learning Environment (Moodle)

You Said:

More (and more consistent) content in Moodle.

Moodle logo
We Did:

There is now an e-learning baseline which sets out the minimum expectations for e-learning provision for all taught programmes and modules, with a focus on Moodle.

We have also produced tools to enable staff to create more engaging teaching materials.

We are continuing to work with departments to ensure a more consistent and improved student experience.


You Said:

For it to be easier for all to access content on Moodle.

Accessibility icon
We Did:

Since the new accessibility regulations were introduced we have trained approximate 500 UCL staff in making teaching documentation more accessible.

In September 2019 we launched Blackboard Ally, a tool that integrates with our virtual learning environment to make digital course content more accessible, and in the first month students downloaded 32,000 files in various formats.

Lecture Recording and Publication (Lecturecast)

You Said:


Video recording icon
We Did:

This year there has been a major expansion of the lecture capture service into 160 more spaces, costing £1.5m.

Computers for Students/laptop loans

You Said:

More computers which are easy to access.

Laptop icon
We Did:

Additional laptop loan lockers were installed and laptop loan availability is shown on UCL Go.

The Student Centre has provided an additional 480 computers/laptops for students.

We have been trialling USB-C monitor desks in various buildings to give students more options, and will be rolling out more of these next year.


You Said:

Want to know where there is space to work, and find this information in one place.

UCL Go! logo
We Did:

We’ve added PC, laptop loans and study space availability to help students find space to work wherever they are on campus.

We also used UCL Go to send travel advisories during exam time and will be trialling more of these alerts.

Over the coming year, we will be reviewing UCL Go to see what we can add or change to improve students’ life on campus.

Module Catalogue

You Said:

To be able to more easily find module information.

We Did:

We created a site where in collaboration with Student and Registry Services, we created a catalogue where all module information can be searched for and viewed.

Student Engage

You Said:

A simplified and more meaningful method of enquiries relating to studies and life at UCL.

Mortarboard icon
We Did:

In collaboration with Student and Registry Services, we have launched Ask UCL. This provides students with a streamlined way of asking questions, accessing a knowledge base and raising and tracking enquiries. It also enables a simpler way to engage with personal tutors.


You Said:

To know about the IT training available to us.

LinkedIn logo
We Did:

Last year (18/19) we ran 259 training courses for students. This included 1,281 hours of R training – our most popular course – and 1008 hours of Matlab training - our second most popular course. Our new course to help staff create accessible documents launched in May 19 and in 3 months we trained 342 staff over 684 hours!

LinkedIn Learning is free to all UCL staff and students and features a huge range of video tutorials supporting learning in software, creative and business skills.

UCL Blogging

You Said:

My own personal platform for publishing my educational experience at UCL.

Wordpress logo
We Did:

Launched in November 2018, UCL Reflect is a WordPress based blogging platform that students and staff can use for teaching and learning purposes. Blogs can be used to support students to reflect on their experiences during study, build a portfolio of their work, collaborate on coursework and projects, and share their understanding of their discipline beyond UCL. In the 12 months since the service was launched over 1,000 blogs have been created.

Research IT

Research Data Repository

You Said:

To be able to share the data that supports all research activity and publications on a platform that is open to the whole world.

Test tube icon
We Did:

The UCL institutional Research Data Repository was launched in June 2019, enabling the publication, preservation, and curation of data underpinning published research or which is otherwise of value. It supports the principles of Open Science and enables data to be formally cited in publications. Over a hundred deposits have already been received, with approximately a thousand downloads so far.