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The University of Southampton
Digital Learning

Excellence in VLE Awards

The Blackboard and VLE awards are an annual awards that surveys students and staff members to highlight modules they feel represent high-quality teaching. Over the years we have had close to 50 winners, and 1000s of modules have been nominated. Nominating a module helps us to discover good teaching practices across all areas of the University and share these practices further. The Blackboard and VLE awards at its core are an opportunity to ensure course design and delivery at the University of Southampton reflects you.

 2024 Blackboard and VLE Awards

The student nomination form is now open! You can nominate up to three modules. We encourage you to nominate modules you feel are examples of great teaching. Only by sharing your experience of what “good feels like” can we help to share this with more modules. Nominations will close on May 20th, giving you an opportunity to nominate both Semester 1 and Semester 2 modules

Why should you nominate a module?

When you nominate a module, good things happen!

Nominate a module today, hyperlinked to the nominate form.



When do staff nominations open?

This year we have chosen to open the staff self-nominations in semester two, we will be reaching out to academic staff via the Deputy Head of Schools (Education) network when this opens.

2023 Blackboard and VLE Awards

The winners for the Blackboard and VLE awards have been selected by our final judging panel made up of students, academic staff, and members of our Student Union. It is with great pride; that we can announce the 2023 Blackboard and VLE Awards winners.


VLE Superleague banner

VLE Superleague

In 2020 we launched the Blackboard & VLE Awards superleague, featuring courses that have won previously and are still consistently nominated by students for the outstanding support they provide. For inspiration, tour some of the superleague courses on YouTube or search the Blackboard Course Catalogue for 'Superleague'.

Super League courses

Virtual Learning Environment (VLE) Awards

Blackboard Catalyst Award 2020 winners logo
Our VLE Awards won an international Blackboard Catalyst Award in 2020

Now into its 12th year, our Excellence in VLE Awards gives students the opportunity to nominate exemplary Blackboard modules, or those using other VLE (Virtual Learning Environment) platforms, and highlight what it is that makes these courses stand out.

Award-winning courses have been chosen for their innovative features and for the high standard of support they offer students. The judging panel includes student representation, Associate Deans (Education) and online learning specialists. Our course rubric explains some of the key aspects considered. Find out more about last year's winning courses in our 2023 Blackboard & VLE Awards blog post.

Central to the VLE Awards is the chance to share good practice. Our Award winners are encouraged to contribute case studies of their practice. Short presentations summarising features praised by students, using examples from shortlisted courses, can be viewed below. This is further explored through a series of workshops for staff, which showcase faculty-specific examples of excellent materials, offer practical tips and discuss good design for online learning.

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