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Appears in:
Pages: 5145-5154
Publication year: 2016
ISBN: 978-84-608-5617-7
ISSN: 2340-1079
doi: 10.21125/inted.2016.0233

Conference name: 10th International Technology, Education and Development Conference
Dates: 7-9 March, 2016
Location: Valencia, Spain

NEW CLASSROOMS FOR TODAY’S LEARNERS; BLENDING THE BEST OF ONLINE AND FACE-TO-FACE APPROACHES

G. Saunders1, F. Oradini1, T. Moore1, M. Clements2, D. Haylor1, S. Yotov1, P. Hartley3, S. Enright1

1University of Westminster (UNITED KINGDOM)
2University of Lincoln (UNITED KINGDOM)
3Edge Hill University (UNITED KINGDOM)
The physical classroom remains key to curriculum delivery in most traditional campus based universities (Temple, 2007, NMC, 2015). The general trend towards constructivist approaches in learning and teaching is driving the need to have more adaptable physical spaces that are suited to a range of teaching and learning approaches (Valenti, 2015). At the University of Westminster an extensive review of infrastructure for learning and teaching (Mukerjee, 2014) in 2014 showed clearly that academic staff felt inhibited by the physical spaces they taught in. They collectively highlighted a range of issues that made it difficult for them to contemplate more flexible forms of in-class curriculum delivery. Many problems cited were quite basic such as lighting, availability of sufficient whiteboard space and room blackout capability. Classroom furniture was also frequently raised as requiring attention. Audio-visual (AV) and Information Technology (IT) facilities were of course identified as key to the set of teacher’s tools within a modern classroom. The ease of use of the AV and IT was critical in determining the extent to which they were used. Current AV/IT configurations were not seen to encourage nor enable student engagement, again tending to lead to a teacher-centric model of operating within the classroom environment.

Using the feedback gathered about classrooms during the infrastructure review the University embarked on a project to refurbish 22 classrooms across the estate during a 5 month period in 2015. The objectives were broadly to develop classrooms that were more adaptable and therefore hopefully suited to a range of in-class delivery approaches. The project had a budget of £1.5M and engaged an external design company to advise on ‘look and feel’. Extensive consultation with designated contacts within each Faculty was undertaken to try to ensure that subject contexts were taken into account where possible. This seemed especially important in relation to the configuration and nature of AV and IT within each room. The subtle variations with respect to AV and IT, coupled to different types of furniture for each room, meant that no 2 rooms were identically refurbished. There was however a clear intention to standardise across the rooms with respect to control and monitoring of equipment within the classrooms.

In this paper we will show how the designs of the classrooms were agreed and what reasons were used for the various features that are found across the rooms. In addition we will present on user feedback, both staff and students, on the general utility of the rooms and analyse feedback from teachers on how the new spaces have or they believe will influence the conduct of their classroom sessions.

References:
[1] Mukerjee, S. (2014). Agility: A Crucial Capability for Universities in Times of Disruptive Change and Innovation. Australian Universities' Review, 56(1), 56-60.
[2] Temple, P. (2007) Learning spaces for the 21st century: a review of the literature, Higher Education Academy, Available at https://www.heacademy.ac.uk/sites/default/files/learning_spaces_v3.pdf [Accessed 08/11/2015]
[3] Valenti, M. (2015) Beyond Active Learning Transformation of the Learning Space, Educause Review, July/August, pg. 31-38
@InProceedings{SAUNDERS2016NEW,
author = {Saunders, G. and Oradini, F. and Moore, T. and Clements, M. and Haylor, D. and Yotov, S. and Hartley, P. and Enright, S.},
title = {NEW CLASSROOMS FOR TODAY’S LEARNERS; BLENDING THE BEST OF ONLINE AND FACE-TO-FACE APPROACHES},
series = {10th International Technology, Education and Development Conference},
booktitle = {INTED2016 Proceedings},
isbn = {978-84-608-5617-7},
issn = {2340-1079},
doi = {10.21125/inted.2016.0233},
url = {http://dx.doi.org/10.21125/inted.2016.0233},
publisher = {IATED},
location = {Valencia, Spain},
month = {7-9 March, 2016},
year = {2016},
pages = {5145-5154}}
TY - CONF
AU - G. Saunders AU - F. Oradini AU - T. Moore AU - M. Clements AU - D. Haylor AU - S. Yotov AU - P. Hartley AU - S. Enright
TI - NEW CLASSROOMS FOR TODAY’S LEARNERS; BLENDING THE BEST OF ONLINE AND FACE-TO-FACE APPROACHES
SN - 978-84-608-5617-7/2340-1079
DO - 10.21125/inted.2016.0233
PY - 2016
Y1 - 7-9 March, 2016
CI - Valencia, Spain
JO - 10th International Technology, Education and Development Conference
JA - INTED2016 Proceedings
SP - 5145
EP - 5154
ER -
G. Saunders, F. Oradini, T. Moore, M. Clements, D. Haylor, S. Yotov, P. Hartley, S. Enright (2016) NEW CLASSROOMS FOR TODAY’S LEARNERS; BLENDING THE BEST OF ONLINE AND FACE-TO-FACE APPROACHES, INTED2016 Proceedings, pp. 5145-5154.
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