Wednesday, August 30, 2006

Collaborative Learning Space Unveiled

Collaborative Learning Environments 2

A new collaborative learning space was unveiled on our campus, as part of our Passport to Technology 3. A small version of the Herman Miller Resolve system has been installed, to complement a larger layout in our Murphy Library. There has been a continual and collaborative process of meetings and discussion between myself and the planning committee in our library. The layout in the photo (left) shows a system to introduce a collaborative learning environment to faculty and students. It will be a place where we can discuss the philosophy of collaborative learning, and how we develop teaching strategies to enhance student learning. We will be tracking how students utilize these new learning environments, and assess how we may "roll out" additional collaborative learning areas in the library and around campus.

Wednesday, August 23, 2006

Collaborative Learning Spaces

Collaborative Learning Environments
When designing new learning spaces, it is important to consider the physical environment, the layout of the space, and the objective of the space in relation to the student. If you have the opportunity to begin with an open area (new or remodeled), surveying many different learning environment before you begin drawing the first line of your design is very important. In my research, I came upon the Herman Miller Resolve system. It is a very unique design with excellent design characteristics. The concept is built upon a matrix structure based upon 120-degree angles. As the literature states, it is an "open, inviting, space-efficient workstations where people feel "comfortable and connected." This concept is very conducive for collaborative learning. I have designed a small demonstration space for this system in our Wing Technology Center, and have been working with our collaborative planning group in Murphy Library to integrate a larger "wishbone" layout. We will be working together to collect data on how students use these spaces to promote learning and interaction in their "university experience." Future postings of our experiences will be posted to this blog. Feel free provide your opinions on this concept.

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