Leeds University Library



What is a lecture?

Lectures explore and explain the major themes, issues and topics which are core to your modules. They introduce big ideas, and the essential building blocks of knowledge in an aspect of your subject.

What are they like? 

Lectures are normally held in lecture theatres, and you might find yourself in a large group of students being taught by an academic member of staff at the front of the room.

What do students do in lectures? 

You may be asked questions, or to work with other students to think about a problem. You will also need to take notes for yourself about the content of the lecture.

Why do I need to attend lectures? 

Recordings of lectures are an additional learning tool, not a substitute for attending lectures. It is really important to still attend lectures, even if they are recorded, because:

  • you have an opportunity for instant feedback and support from your lecturer. They can check your understanding and progress and address any problems you're having
  • the lecture might contain copyright material (e.g. videos) which cannot be recorded, or demonstrations which are better viewed live. Also, lecturers may choose not to record additional content within the session, such as questions from students and related answers
  • there will be some delay before a recording is available, but you might need to know the lecture content ahead of a lab, seminar or tutorial. Some lecturers may choose not to release the recordings until the end of the semester in time for exam revision
  • lectures are a key time to get to know your classmates, make connections and solve shared problems with your peers
  • attending regular lectures spreads the material across the term and avoids cramming before assignments or exams
  • not all lectures will be recorded and, as with all technology, it is possible that the technology is interrupted for a particular lecture. The recordings are to enhance your learning and should be not relied upon as a replacement.