The Sutton Trust provides immersive programmes for students from low to middle income backgrounds, helping them to access top universities, apprenticeships and jobs. In early 2020 when the COVID-19 pandemic took hold of the world, it was faced with cancelling its face-to-face programmes for thousands of students.
COVID had ruined the summer school. But Sutton Trust had ideas on how to save it for their thousands of students. Enter Filtered.
Filtered built an online platform in a rapid 8 week sprint to ensure school was back in for summer. The platform was packed with personalised content and social learning features.
20,000 episodes were completed on the platform and 14,000 messages exchanged, with 92% of all content rated relevant. And most importantly, thousands of students got to see their higher education dreams realised.
For 24 years the Sutton Trust has championed social mobility through programmes, research and policy influence. It provides immersive programmes for students from low to middle income backgrounds, helping them to access top universities, apprenticeships and jobs. In early 2020 when the COVID-19 pandemic took hold of the world, it was faced with cancelling its face-to-face programmes for thousands of students.
Sutton Trust needed a way to continue to be there for its students. It needed a digital experience that provided the same level of personalised guidance and academic support, at scale and unconstrained by physical events. Enter Sutton Trust Online.
What began as a light-touch pilot for 500 students quickly grew to virtual summer schools and digital conferences for over 6,000 students.
of students activated their accounts
episodes completed by students
students worked on personal statements
assets viewed from main library
of content marked as relevant
You can’t digitise a classroom overnight. But the cause was urgent. A process that should take over a year had to be condensed into an eight week sprint to get everything online in time for the students to log into their development sessions.
That meant drafting in an elite team of partners with the experience and attitude to get the job done. Filtered helped merge these teams’ in-house single launch projects into an agile, iterative development process to launch and improve the platform simultaneously. Indeed, the purpose of Sutton Trust Online itself developed alongside the platform’s back-end, informed by the activity of its students in a feedback loop.
“We wanted to leverage the technology offered by Filtered to provide a really personalised journey for our students. It's incredibly smart how much their technology improves the more our students interact with it."
Head of Innovation, Sutton Trust
Sutton Trust has a vision of equality and inclusion for all, and the platform had to embody those values. By going digital, it could reach thousands of students, some of whom are isolated in their own homes. And the platform itself was designed to be fully accessible, to ensure maximum inclusion.
The numbers reflected the success of that goal, with over 20,000 episodes completed on the platform, and over 2,000 students crafting their personal statements. The online platform completely transformed how the Sutton Trust runs its programmes.
And success doesn’t just mean enabling individual students to flourish alone. By connecting them socially, exponential positives can blossom. Social features of the platform were developed to help students break down physical and social barriers: over 14,000 messages were exchanged between them.
hours spent in the online community
messages exchanged between students
The benefits of digital transformation aren’t just growing student’s abilities, confidence, and networks. By applying Filtered’s powerful algorithmic personalisation, Sutton Trust Online delivered exactly what each student needed, when they needed it. 92% of content was rated useful by learners.
However 100% of the data insights provided by the platform will help shape the next generation, filling in usage gaps with fresh content to ensure no student is left behind, and every need is covered.