We report on the growth, fabrication and electroluminescence (EL) characteristics of light-emitting diodes (LEDs) based on Er-doped GaN (GaN:Er) and GaN/AlGaN multiple quantum well (MQW:Er) active layers. The LED structures were grown using metal organic chemical vapor deposition and processed into 300x300 μm2 mesa devices. The LEDs exhibit emission at 1.54 μm, due to Er intra-4f transitions, under forward bias conditions. The 1.54 μm emission properties from LEDs with MQWs:Er and GaN:Er active layers were probed. The LEDs fabricated using MQWs:Er exhibited improved performance as evidenced by a factor of 4 enhancement in the optical power output as compared to conventional GaN:Er based LEDs. The results demonstrate a significant advance in the development of current injected, chip-scale emitters and waveguide amplifiers based on Er doped semiconductors.