Active Learning Space Design Presentation & Discussion on Tuesday, January 15th

Event: Active Learning Space Design Presentation & Discussion
Date: Tuesday, January 15th
Time: 11:00am-1:00pm

11am: Lunch will be served.
11:15 – 12:30am: Presentation by Chip McClellan, Steelcase’s Leader in Education Solutions. Chip McClellan will have the group engage in breakout exercises to demonstrate active learning.
12:30 – 1pm: Q+A Session/Product Testing

Location: Stokes 106 at Haverford College
Lunch and furniture provided by Steelcase

I (Hiroyo) went to the Educause conference in November and attended a workshop “Active Learning Strategies for Active Learning Spaces” by Adam Finkelstein, Educational Developer at Teaching and Learning Services at McGill University.

At the workshop, Adam shared the principles of classroom design McGill uses when designing/renovating the learning spaces. To formulate the design principles, their group used the National Survey for Student Engagement (NSSE)’s Benchmarks for Effective Educational Practice. They used four of NSSE’s benchmarks: 1)  Active & Collective Learning, 2)  Student & Faculty Interaction, 3)  Enriching Educational Experiences, and 4)  Supportive Campus Environment.

You can see all the principles for designing teaching and learning spaces on McGill’s websites.  I listed some key elements that I heard many times during the workshop.

  • Flexible and comfortable furniture to promote collaboration
  • Adequate work surfaces for laptops/tablets and papers
  • Easy information sharing (eg. screen sharing to encourage student-driven learning, writable walls for collaborative areas, and flexible internet access)
  • Small podium in the middle of the classroom to encourage interaction between students and faculty.

Here are some pictures of recent classroom improvements at McGill and video interviews of faculty who teach in these rooms.

The workshop was held in a room that had furniture to promote active learning designed by Steelcase.

Because some faculty members at Haverford expressed interested in active learning spaces, I invited Steelcase to bring their products and give a presentation on how their products can help to promote active and collaborative learning.

Steelcase is bringing Node (movable chairs), Verb (movable tables & whiteboard), and Media: Space (space for collaboration with multiple devices).

See Nodes in action from Steelcase YouTube video

See Verbs in action from Steelcase YouTube video

See Media: Space in action from Steelcase YouTube video

The presentation will be on Tuesday, January 15th from 11:00am -1:00pm in Stokes 106. Lunch will be provided by Steelcase. If you would like to attend to the presentation, please contact the ITT group ( The furniture will be available in Stokes 106 from Tuesday, January 15th to Thursday 24th, 2013. I hope that we can start a conversation about active learning spaces.

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