Spaces for Knowledge Generation is an ALTC project which was undertaken as a partnership between La Trobe University as lead institution, Charles Sturt University, Apple and Kneeler Design Architects. The context of the learning experience necessarily changes over time, with technological, economic and social developments influencing the types of learning spaces learners and teachers require to achieve their learning outcomes, and this $220,000 project was designed to inform, guide and support sustainable development of learning and teaching spaces and practices, maximising flexibility so as to be used by as many disciplines as feasible. The project was based on the philosophy that constructivist approaches to learning, as well as to research and study, should make use of technologies and approaches that students favour, and that learning spaces should therefore be organised to accommodate learner-generated aspects of learning. Spaces for Knowledge Generation provides a model for designing student learning environments that is future-focused and sustainable for the medium term.
An article by SKG Project member Matthew Riddle and Project Leader Assoc Prof Kay Souter following on from work on this project on student perspectives was published last week in the Journal of Learning Spaces. To view the article, click here:
Designing informal learning spaces using student perspectives
My name is John, I am a third year Student at the Thurgoona Campus, I have set my alarm early today to make sure I get the best seat in the lounge room in the residential college. The lounge has a wireless network and I complete with nine others for a spot. As a typical student I am not really too interested in logging in to the Learning Management System, but I would much rather send an email to my girlfriend who lives 200 kilometres away – I really miss her… and of course I need to satisfy my daily dose of facebooking.
My house mates are also getting up; looks like some have definitely been out partying, others are trying to do some last minute homework, and I think some just enjoy catching up over breakfast.
I’m studying Education and it is a short walk across campus to my morning lecture. It’s an old but cosy lecture theatre which fits about 30 students. Today’s lecture is on independent learning, it has really made me think twice about how I should approach things.
After my lecture I head to the 24/7 learning commons in the library, I’m meeting with three of my classmate to discuss the latest assignment. It really helps to talk about it with others, but sometimes I feel so overwhelmed by the amount of work we have to do.
I’ve found a quiet corner in the learning commons to complete the individual section of the assignment, I try to finish as much work as I can but realise that I won’t be able to complete it before lunch.
Either way, I pack up my stuff and head to the Gums Café just outside the commons to meet my mates for lunch. We enjoy our meal, joking and laughing, doing anything we can to distract ourselves from the fact that exams are approaching.
Lunch over and I’m back to the learning commons to look for some books, and to use Google scholar to find some articles for my essay. I’ve logged onto the online discussion forum to clarify some issues with my classmates about the assignment. I am hoping to finish it within a couple of hours.
I pack up from the library and call my girlfriend on my iPhone as I walk back to the residences.
The best part of the week – Friday night drinks at the local pub with my friends.