It has been an interesting day – UQ had some very different spaces to show us. I particularly liked the Advanced Concept Teaching Space. I appreciated Luke Angel’s candour in telling us what worked and what didn’t. I made a note of your comments throughout the day and summarise here the key learning points from today:-
· The model for teaching and learning space design looks the same now as it did 100 years ago. Very little else in the world has resisted change quite so much.
· The best way to engage staff in new designs is to identify programs that are already targeted for redesign for some other reason.
· Too much technology can be terrifying!
· Innovation can be very expensive and it is difficult to ascertain whether there is a good ROI
· A framework for evaluating spaces needs to be developed
o A national framework would be better for benchmarking
o How do we assess the impact of spaces on student learning as part of the evaluation of the space?
· Innovative things can be simple changes to existing formats (changing the design of a raked lecture theatre to allow students to turn round and collaborate with others)
· Exciting spaces can be a great marketing tool but the ‘window of wow’, as Lisa put it, is growing rapidly shorter.
· Consistency of user interfaces is very important – academic staff find it difficult to move from 1 set up to a completely different setup
· Getting the engagement from a key group of academics is essential for ensuring that the space is well utilised
· Radical new approaches to space design need a corresponding change in curriculum (e.g. the new UQ engineering building is using active learning spaces and this is being supported by a new approach to teaching)
· Be very careful what you build into the walls! Consider more carefully how you can enable people to bring their own technology with them