The landscape of education is changing. New pedagogies and learning behaviours, facilitated by new technologies, are changing the way our students learn. Furthermore students themselves now expect more from their education – to equip them with the skills, knowledge and experience to make them ready to succeed in an increasingly competitive workplace.
As schools, colleges and embrace this new era it casts a spotlight on the importance of learning environments that motivate and inspire: places that can only be achieved with a careful blend of people, pedagogy, space and technology.
Teaching is no longer about standing at the front of the room and preaching to students. Learning is no longer about sitting at desks in uniform rows as the teachers preach. More interactive teaching styles require classroom spaces to be used differently. Teachers choose to locate themselves in the middle of the space; they use a wide variety of presentation resources rather than the blackboard and make peer-to-peer learning and group projects as relevant as independent study.
The proliferation of technology has prompted this evolution – it has changed the way we use space and consume information. Whether it’s immersive projects on walls and floors or breakout spaces for students to work on tablets and laptops, teachers and students are seeing the benefit of harnessing active learning methods. It increases engagement and participation and in an increasingly social world, it also helps students to learn from each other through self-guided learning and discovery. Education environments are adapting to facilitate this new active learning context.
Amidst all this change there is another key consideration – that of the competitiveness of today’s educators. In the same way businesses seek differentiation and use reputation to gain market share, so too do educators. The use of technology, the environments students occupy and the results they attain all impact reputation. The expression of identity and ethos, the creation of safe and positive environments that emphasise pastoral care, socialisation and values, combined with knowledge and skills contribute to this further.
With a such a variety of factors impacting education it’s no wonder that educators are asking for environments that embrace different learning styles, make students work ready, achieve differentiation and capitalise on technology.
The challenge is one of space and how it is used. Educators are increasingly looking to the commercial sector and the design and build partners they use, to deliver spaces that truly work. They are learning from plc’s commitment to making every square foot of space count, creating spaces that stimulate as much as serve and using environments as a means to be different. The changing landscape of learning presents countless opportunities for educators and students alike. The real challenge is making the commitment to do things differently and better.
To find out more about the education revolution, download our whitepaper When Education and the Workplace Collide, which is full of guidance and advice: