Tuesday, 1 March 2011

Two new project meetings visited.

Today I attended the first project meeting concerned with the conversion of an old 190 seat lecture theatre into a circa 60 seat collaborative learning space.  The session was chaired by John Peacock the General Manger, Learning Environments and attended by his AV\IT manager a project manager Peter and myself.
This project is within the Health Sciences department and has been proposed for several years but has now received the green light. However the time scale is now tight. Sound familiar?
I will be attending further project meetings and this coincides really well with my visit and I hope to give some input into the final design. I hope to get some picture of the project as it develops.

Later I attended a workshop at Methodist Ladies College (MLC) led by Peter. Once again I am lucky to get in at the start of a project during my time here. What a place! It is a very well resourced private school and has some great spaces; several of them designed by Peter in the year 12 (16-17 yrs) areas. Unfortunately I left my simm card at my apartment and don’t have the cable to get the pics I took which are stored on my cameras internal memory. Doh!
The project is to re-design an ‘open’ space used by the lower school pupils. The project architects were present as well as the lower school teaching staff. We discussed what it was that they wanted to achieve in the space and how it would be divided. It was clear that there are times when two groups could be using the same space which would need to be divided in some way. This put me in mind of the coloured spaces Az posted about at Newcastle. Send me a pic Az and I will post it.
There was much discussion about the furniture and how the floor space may be used by the girls. I mentioned the success of the bean bags that we provided in the Hugh Owen library at Aberystwyth which received some interest.
I was pleased that I was able to give some assistance with the AV solution they may use and to steer the project away from data projectors. This was a case of doing as had been done previously at the school and being unaware of the alternatives. Providing mobile large interactive screen solutions will give much more adaptability to the space.
I will be attending a few more of the project meetings before I leave so hope to see something close to the final design on paper.
On writing this blog it occurred to me that there was no student input into the discussion. This may come later as this was the first workshop. Peter, perhaps you could clarify.
Overall a very busy and productive day in terms of personal development and the advancement of two quite different projects.
Here are some videos. When I comment about the screen I meant to stay solid wall not different colours. The outdoors video is included to demonstrate what can be done to provide a learning space in quite small areas.


  1. Hi Nigel, I'm interested in the Health Sciences project as we are about to open an open access student study space to be shared by Health Scientists and Electronic and Electrical Engineers..... We are also creating our first interactive lecture theatre for Health Sciences later this year, so it would be good to hear about their ideas/plans/requirements of a collaborative space

    sounds like another good/productive day!


  2. Good stuff mate, I'm interested to hear about the way the stakeholders work together. At these project meetings do you think they all 'speak the same language'? i.e. a shared vocabulary. Are there any students involved in the discussions?


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