THE LIBRARY IN SUPPORT OF THE NEXT GENERATION CLASSROOM: CONSIDERATIONS AND LESSONS LEARNED

T. Colegrove

University of Nevada, Reno (UNITED STATES)
Over the past decades much has shifted across the landscape of higher education. In the library, print resources have transitioned to electronic formats and availability, leaving classroom instructors questioning the ongoing relevance of the physical library to the academic mission. Over the same timeframe education practice has introduced increasingly active and personalized teaching methods, seemingly demanding more of an already overloaded teaching faculty. Is there a middle ground that can leverage library resources more directly in support of the learning, discovery, and outreach missions of the University? One in which the resources of the library can be brought to bear more directly on the problems of enabling and supporting the constructivist problem-based learning approach of the next generation classroom.

This paper explores new and emerging roles of the library in that support: sharing lessons learned while transforming an underutilized branch library into a vibrant hub of collaborative and problem-based learning. Within the physical commons of the library, equipped with non-traditional technology such as 3D printers and laser cutters, and staffed with personnel skilled at leveraging that technology in support of active learning and engagement, a depth of learning can occur in parallel with classroom instruction. The adjunct spaces and resources of the library become intertwined with the classroom, augmenting and amplifying the efforts of both. Emergent best practices are shared, along with promising results of early collaborations between the library and the classroom.