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    The Learning Landscapes Project

    Two rooms have been reconfigured for the coming academic year to pilot and evaluate pedagogic approaches facilitated by flexible and engaging learning spaces: C207 and CG48. In addition, the default furniture layout of teaching room W153 in the Williams building has been arranged in a way that supports a more collaborative, interactive learning experience.

    Room C207

    Room C207 (see image above) has been designed to foster active practice-based learning, which supports moving from a traditional didactic ‘lecture’ layout to a more active, co-designed and co-delivered learning environment. Students occupy clusters of tables enabling greater collaboration, each supplied with power and connectivity to Wi-Fi services. Each cluster has a dedicated interactive screen that can also be used for key-note presentations. The visualizer aids staff to release content to the whole class or to individual tables.

    Room CG48

    Room CG48 (see image above) has been designed to foster active practice-based learning by enabling maximum flexibility in layout. Tables and chairs can be rapidly arranged in various groupings to suit a wide variety of teaching needs with no requirement to book ahead for support in rearranging layouts.

    Learn more about the Learning Landscape project

    The underpinning principles in considering the Learning Landscape allow for a multi-dimensional approach to the design and use of learning spaces (real and virtual) that recognises advances in pedagogic thinking and, in particular, the principles of Active Learning.

    The project aims to reflect the relevance of a number of key aspects such as:

    • supporting student-centered and co-designed pedagogies;
    • supporting the development of communities of learning;
    • flexibility in the use of spaces to match curriculum needs;
    • maximising our estate capabilities;
    • responding to the opportunities of technology-led learning;
    • being fit for the future and;
    • designs that celebrate our diversity and inclusivity of learning.

    Our vision the future

    Active learning 1

    Active Learning Classroom, University of Minnesota

    Future learning spaces will:

    • Be inspiring spaces designed between academics, estate professionals and students that encourage inquiry-based and learner-centered pedagogies, motivating all towards successful outcomes and achievements.
    • Be a catalyst for innovative approaches to teaching and learning and support our intentions for an ‘inclusive curriculum’.
    • Facilitate communities of learning including students, academics, professional services, our contractors and regional employers in order to enhance co-creation and joint projects.
    • Recognise the continuing movement towards technology-rich and technology-empowering learning that operates in a globally connected environment.
    • Enable flexible access to learning opportunities and support a variety of pathways to success.
    • Support learning that occurs in real and virtual spaces, on and off campus and in collaboration with stakeholders.
    • Be managed through systems and processes that are student-focused and allow confidence in published timetables, providing increasing ability and responsibility for students to manage their own learning spaces, real and virtual.
    • Provide flexible and multi-faceted spaces that enable a variety of teaching uses and curriculum developments, including the developing MDX-GF.

    Active learning

    Delft University of Technology, Netherlands

    Nature of the project

    The project will be iterative in nature, able to address the developing academic strategy initiatives over the future period. Our view is that the project should provide a clear vision of how the University could create future learning spaces to match our ambitions and sector developments and, after initial scoping of potential, to make recommendations for action, in the form of pilot projects, on a periodic basis during its lifetime. In this respect, there is no natural ‘concluding’ period to the project as learning landscapes will be ever-evolving.

    Three key phases of the project have been identified:

    • Visioning – engage with all stakeholders to reflect future requirements of Middlesex students, academics and partners in order to identify opportunities and provide a vision as to how our learning landscape could be shaped by these consultations.
    • Reality check – evaluate what is realistic to achieve, by when and how the vison could be put into practice, adding insight and, as a result, influencing existing project thinking across the University.
    • Recommendations – make recommendations and oversee implementation of specific pilot projects that allow the University and its partners to develop and promulgate good practice and guidance.

    Active learning

    Cave 2, Monash University, Australia

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