eNews 21 July

The Big Leeds Conversation, VC's blog, digital developments, 2021/22 Year Planner, Student Education Conference dates, Eid Al Adha and more

eNews 14 July 2021


Working arrangements update  

Following the lifting of restrictions on Monday 19 July, we would like to reiterate that the University’s previously announced arrangements remain in place until further notice. 

The return of activities to campus will continue as planned, with colleagues returning gradually during the next few months. Arrangements will be communicated by heads of area in the next few weeks. Until then, please continue with your current working, teaching and research arrangements. 

Current guidelines on face coverings and social distancing arrangements remain unchanged until further notice. We’re working through the implications of the Government’s latest announcement and will issue further communications in the next couple of weeks.


The Big Leeds Conversation – Your experience so far 

More than 600 ideas, 1,300 comments and 22,000 votes have been shared in The Big Leeds Conversation – your opportunity to co-create the values and behaviours that will shape our future. Discover from colleagues how easy it is to access the discussion from any internet-connected device, allowing you to anonymously share ideas and comment on the values that mean the most to you. If you haven’t taken part yet, check your inbox (and clutter folder) for your login details from our partners at thebigleedsconversation@clevertogether.com 

Thought pieces 

Vice-Chancellor’s blog | Where do professional disagreements end and violations of dignity begin? 

“In all workplaces and professional communities, differences in perspectives are prevalent and can be an asset. But we need to be watchful of disagreements escalating into breakdowns of cohesion and important relationships.” Our Vice-Chancellor, Professor Simone Buitendijk, shares her latest blog in which she considers the importance of respect for each other’s dignity. 

Digital developments 

Minerva and Turnitin | Upgrade and training 

Minerva is being upgraded to the latest version of Blackboard at the beginning of August. As a result, the platform will be unavailable from 5pm on Friday 6 August until Wednesday 11 AugustAn online Minerva guide for staff, highlighting changes following the upgrade, is now available. A guide for students has also been published. Colleagues can now book Minerva training sessions, covering information in the online guide. 

The Turnitin integration – used for assessment – will also be upgraded to the latest version at the same time. A summary of key changes is now available together with training sessions on the new Turnitin system 

Update | University print services

Work to restore the MyPrint service is in progress. We’re currently testing the security, and if the risk is low enough, the service will be restored later this week. In the meantime, staff and students can continue to make use of the free printing services available from the Print and Mail Service (formerly PCB). Please check the IT website for further updates

Reminder | Updating your laptop   

Last summer, we sent out laptops to many colleagues to ensure they could work from home. We’ve now started emailing colleagues to let them know if their laptop needs updating to ensure they remain secure. If you’re contacted, you must follow the instructions or you may lose access to some networked services. If IT doesn’t contact you, you don’t need to do anything. Please contact Doug Frame if you have any questions. 

Sign up | Digital Education Summer Roadshow  

You can now register to attend a Digital Education Service presentation by academic colleagues, with the latest session scheduled for Wednesday 28 July. Covering many aspects of digital education, including the Minerva upgrade, learning analytics, digital assessments and more, the events will be followed by a live Q&A. 

Campus life 

2021/22 Year Planner published 

Download our planner for the new academic year, featuring key dates such as term times, exam periods and University holidays.  

Recording | Sir William Henry Bragg Building events 

More than 100 people attended the recent town hall-style events to update colleagues about the Sir William Henry Bragg Building development. You can now watch an event recording or download presentation slides and FAQs on the Estates and Facilities website. 

Library | Suggest a purchase 

A new form for suggesting Library purchases has been created. Any member of the University can use it to submit requests for all types of items, including ebooks, audiovisual material, databases or journal subscriptions, provided it has relevance to study and research at Leeds. Online versions are purchased before print, wherever possible. You can request items not currently available in our online or printed collections 


National Student Survey (NSS) results

The results of this year’s National Student Survey (NSS) have been released. They reflect an overall drop in satisfaction rates among UK students when asked about educational experience during the pandemic.  

Register | Confirmation and clearing call handling   

A reminder that colleagues not already involved with admissions are invited to volunteer for confirmation and clearing call handling when this year’s A-Level results are published on Tuesday 10 August. No prior knowledge of admissions is required as full training and support is provided. Volunteers can also indicate whether they would prefer to be ‘stand-by staff’, only called upon to help if needed. 

Save the date | Student Education Conference 2022

Next year’s Student Education Conference (#SEC2022) takes place on Thursday 6 and Friday 7 January, with a theme of ‘belonging and community’. The aim is to offer sessions both virtually and in person, showcasing new multi-mode teaching spaces available across campus. A call for abstracts will be made later in the summer. See the LITE’s Student Education Conference webpage for updates. 


Innovation fellowship programme | Deadline extended 

Are you an early or mid-career researcher at Leeds? Do you want up to £7,500 to create economic and societal value from your research? The deadline for applications for the Michael Beverley Innovation Fellowship Programme has been extended until 6pm on Sunday 25 July. Contact Jo Howorth for further information or read about the benefits of the programme from one of this year’s Fellows and Professor Nick Plant, Deputy Vice-Chancellor: Research and Innovation. 

Learning and development 

TIPS blog | New articles available 

Three new articles are now available on the Teaching, Innovation and Practice in Student Education (TIPS) blog: 

The blog is a collection of short features written by colleagues, sharing examples of best teaching practice. Check out our guidance on submitting to the TIPS blog if you’re interested in contributing. 

Wellbeing and support 

Single Parent Network meetings  

Promoting support, awareness-raising and change for all single parents, this relatively new staff network holds online meetings from 9.15-10am on the third Thursday of each month. Hosted through the Women at Leeds Network, you can request to join the Single Parent Network group on Teams ahead of the next meeting, scheduled for tomorrow (22 July). 

Sign up | Summer strength sessions 

Been wasting away sat at home during lockdown? In need of a lift? Why not power up by joining the exclusive staff summer Strength4Life course at The Edge. Work out under the watchful eye of two of the University’s strength training specialists – Nina Anne Lawrence, an over-50s competitive strongwoman, and Tim Jarrett, lead strength and condition coach. Only six places are available on the five-week course, which starts on Wednesday 28 July for the special staff price of £40. Sign up today and see your fitness go from strength to strength! 


Wishing you a happy and safe Eid Al Adha 

Eid Al Adha celebrations have been taking place yesterday (Tuesday) and today (Wednesday). Whatever day it falls on for you, we hope it’s a day of unity and happiness. With the lifting of national covid restrictions, please follow your local Mosque and community guidelines so you can celebrate safely. Eid Mubarak to all! 

GFEI Symposium 2021 

This year’s Global Food and Environment Institute (GFEI) Symposium takes place between 9.30am and 12.30pm on Wednesday 22 September. The event is open to staff and students whose research or studies relate to food, environment and agriculture, and offers a chance to learn how GFEI can support your work. Register for the symposium via Eventbrite or contact GFEI if you have any questions.

Careers Summer for Researchers | Personal branding webinar 

OD&PL is hosting an online webinar about personal branding with Susan Chritton, from 4-5.30pm on Thursday 2 September. The event – for postgraduate researchers and research staff – considers the importance of personal branding and how to develop and communicate yours. Susan is a thought leader in personal branding based in the US and is an executive career coach, master personal brand strategist and applied positive psychology practitioner, as well as the author of ‘Personal Branding for Dummies’.

In case you missed it 

VPN service being replaced 

Changes to Teams meeting recordings 

Healthy Week 2021 success 

University of Leeds Teaching Awards 2021 winners 

Profiles | Leeds Partnership Awards winners 

Apply now | Public Engagement with Research Awards 2021 

Join | Engaged Research Microsoft Team 

Apply | Aurora leadership development programme 

Book now | Top Hat support sessions 

Leeds for Life Refresh | Essential training for academic personal tutors 

Get involved | South Asian Heritage Month 2021 

Gryphons Go Kids Camp 

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