The lime green chairs are Knoll Generation. We had many samples delivered and students sat and rolled around in them. This chair was the hands-down winner. The chair back is made of a flexible plastic that twists and turns with your body. The chairs are made from about 45% recycled materials.We implemented a tiered technology strategy in the room. We aimed to create a space where students can bring what they carry in their pockets or backpacks (handheld devices, laptops, thumb drives) and easily put it all on display. You see booths with built-in monitors to share between 2-3 people. We have the very popular, counter height collaboration table (Steelcase) and and adjacent soft seating "presentation practice area" where you can share between 5-6 people, and then the workstation/lab area in the middle of the room where you can put your work on display for everyone. If you want to work by yourself, the laptop counter space is there. Students can also take control of three different audio zones to share their music.These resources are all self-monitored with no administrative rules limiting potential uses, we know that as administrators, we can't pre-determine or even imagine the ways in which students will learn to use the space and equipment, so it is completely self-governed. Students also have access to a cable TV signal that they can move around the room. We installed separate data and video-switching networks all integrated through the Crestron platform. It was very difficult to coordinator the efforts of the architects, electricians, and AV vendor. Even with a walk through with plans in hand during rough-in there were still a number of problems we had to correct along the way. I was personally in the space at least 3-4 a week during construction in an efforts to identify problems and we still didn't manage to catch them all.
Dear Bill,This looks like a really nice facility, clearly a lot of thought has gone into it.I am really interested in the provision of music and how that is accessed and managed by the students? We have not provided any music in any of our facilities yet, partly because we are still concentrating on getting the facilities right (or as “right” as we can!) but also partly due to the fact that we have a huge problem here with students telling us that we don’t have enough quiet spaces for them to study in. They like the social learning suites, but for the individual student who wants to work on his/her own without actually being alone, they are far too noisy.I am also as a result interested in the provision of TV for the same reasons, is this for work or leisure? We have a number of TVs in our learning suites, but they only show 24 hour rolling news with subtitles.I completely agree with your last paragraph, I have been on site for our new facility almost every day and we are still identifying problems, I don’t know how we eliminate them entirely, but without constant attendance on site, there would be many more.We have just had the results of a student survey of learning spaces undertaken last term. The top 5 issues are:1. Not enough PCs2. Too many PCs being used for Facebook3. Not enough quiet study spaces4. Lecture Theatre Heating and Cooling problems5. Uncomfortable Lecture Theatre seating with writing benches too small/far away!So, still lots to doBest wishesT
ToniYour list above could be from Aberystwyth.It is interesting that 1 and 2 in particular are regular complaints we have.1 is also interesting because some institutions are removing PCs or Macs becasue of the rise in mobile computing owned by students. This was the case at UVA if you remember where university provided computer provision was almost elimninated. Is this still the case Bill? We discussed this when we met at UCD and I seem to recall it was not a popular decision.What I am seeing at Aberystwyth is that students are using both thier mobile computing devices and the university provided ones at the same time. This of course feeds directly into the space design in terms of desk space and power.
Our central ITC department has continued down this path. There aren't really any other spaces on campus where you'd find readily available MACs like we put in our new space, we are seeing a large amount of walk-in traffic for use of these computers...we decided to go against the grain in this respect and install the workstations and it has been informative to see the students response. This is a tricky question related to administrative efforts to influence student behavior/norms.