Creating a teaching and learning space
The physical space of a lecture theatre and didactic classroom setting were for a long time seen as the optimal teaching space. Ongoing development and use of technology in teaching means it is now possible to bring much more diverse materials into the physical classroom setting, to bring the classroom materials into off-campus environments, and to create virtual classrooms that can be attended anywhere in the world. There are many interconnected locations and spaces that students finds themselves in when studying, such as private learning areas that are in the home, or informal learning areas such as the library.
Technology has played an important part in how new spaces are formed and utilised. Students are spending less time on campus as they are able to download lectures, use tablet devices, computers, internet, email and mobiles; consequently technology has influenced the student learning space. Building design of educational spaces has seen the creation of open areas, learning pods and digital enhancements. As teachers we need to consider both the physical and virtual learning and teaching spaces and what is required for optimal learning opportunities.
- The Future of Learning Environments (YouTube, 8:25min)
- The impact of innovative learning space at Aston (YouTube, 3:13min)
Framework for designing future student learning environments
An Australian Learning and Teaching Council Report (2009) noted Scott Morris' metaphors for everyday learning spaces as:
|Campfire||Watering hole||Cave||Mountain top|
A structured space in which students face a teacher and listen to traditional knowledge
An informal space where students can discuss, create and collaborate informally
A private space for independent and reflective work
A space for presenting work to an audience to demonstrate understanding
Consider these metaphors within various teaching and learning spaces. Does your teaching environment provide learning spaces for each metaphor?
|Types||Use||Space description||Possible metaphors|
|Formal collaborative innovative spaces||Small group work|
|Private learning space||
|Outdoor spaces||Social and informal learning|