Industry News




 

12/15/2011

From College to Corporate: Learning Spaces Ease Transition to the Workplace

By Jeff Vredevoogd,Tracy Fouchea

 
From College to Corporate: Learning Spaces Ease Transition to the Workplace

Much like a worn-in pair of jeans, people often have a comfort level with familiar, traditional spaces – perhaps none more so than the classroom.

The smell of chalk, the sight of tab-armed desks and a professor’s lectern can jog memories of a favorite class, time spent passing notes or mastering a challenging subject. But what if the classroom could do more to outfit students for the working world by giving students a competitive advantage?                                          

As colleges and universities seek to provide resources for the career-focused and tech-savvy Millennial generation on campus today, they are reexamining the impact of the physical environment on learning.

Furniture design manufacturer Herman Miller has partnered with numerous schools as part of its Learning Spaces Research Program (LSRP), exploring forward-thinking ways to design spaces that support 21st century students. The result of its extensive research and data collection is a new classroom model called the learning studio.

These spaces feature flexible layouts with furniture that can be easily rearranged, offer easy access to technology and include collaborative workspaces that boost engagement. In many ways, learning studio elements echo office settings, thus helping support the real-world skill development necessary for the eventual transition to corporate life.   

Presentation Preparation: Finding a Voice

The professional world is filled with opportunities to present – a reality that often sparks anxiety among those who fear public speaking. When learning environments foster group discussion and encourage presentations, students are able to practice these skills with peers long before they’ll be required to do so with clients. Classrooms can support this goal with furnishings and technology that easily accommodate roundtable conversations and opportunities for students to showcase their ideas.

Data reflects a measurable gain in student comfort and confidence when presenting in front of a group in learning studio environments like these, and students themselves reportedly felt more relaxed and comfortable presenting in the learning studios over traditional classrooms.   

Strong presentation and articulate critical thinking skills are paramount for post-graduate success. By removing boundaries between students and faculty, students are empowered to debate and defend their positions with professors, much the way they’ll eventually do with a boss or manager. Breaking down barriers to technology should be viewed as an enabling factor, serving as a sail to power student presentations and drive learning, not an anchor weighing them down. 

Collaboration and Engagement: Key Professional Behaviors

In all realms of life, social, collaborative spaces keep minds, voices and projects moving, while stimulating, engaging spaces draw people in and spark creative thinking. Collaboration and engagement are major contributors to success in the classroom and in the office.  64% of participants found high-quality, student-faculty engagement to be the hallmark of an effective learning space.

According to an old saying, “you can go to college and get a degree, or you can get engaged and get an education.” This is no different from the expectations of tomorrow’s workforce, that can go to work and do a job, or get engaged and be a successful worker that cares about colleagues, clients and making a difference. Clearly, making collaboration and engagement a habit for students in the classroom pays off in the workplace.      

Learning environments should recognize the importance of collaboration and make it a priority. Rooms should be configured with students facing one another to promote interactive learning, and include maneuverable furnishings that support breaking into small groups for projects and discussion. And when appropriate, instructors should be empowered to clear the decks – stacking and storing furniture elements when not needed or not in use in favor of open space.

According to the research, only 48% of participants felt that traditional classrooms were effective for group work, whereas learning studios were found to support group work by 86% of participants – a substantial 38 percent increase.

Inspiration Goes Both Ways: Corporate Learning Environments

According to Eliot Masie, chairman and chief learning officer for The Masie Center’s Learning Consortium, the most unique thing about the human species is our capacity for life-long learning. As students for life, the line blurs between formalized classroom settings and learning in the real world.

”Educators must build bridges among higher education, K-12 and corporate learning,” Masie says.

Higher education institutions share a common goal to prepare students for the future and their own individual tomorrows, whatever they may be. Classrooms and learning spaces that remain locked in the past reinforce old practices. In a rapidly changing education and corporate landscape, it will be spaces that drive change and allow for collaboration, engagement, technology and flexibility that will prepare the future workforce to thrive after graduation and beyond.


Jeff Vredevoogd
is Director, Herman Miller Education, and Tracy Fouchea LSRP Program Manager.
 


Visit our website today to learn about the design flexibility of a Morton building and the endless possibilities of partnering with our designBUILD team.


Wood construction is both cost and energy efficient. Check out Morton Buildings and our designBUILD team online today to discover all the benefits of post-frame construction.


When choosing a metal-clad building for your next construction project, consider Morton Buildings, Inc., and their designBUILD team, we’ll make your dream a reality.

Bluebeam® Revu® simplifies digital facilities document management from design review to leveraging as-builts, maintenance manuals and O&Ms submittals.

Yaskawa drives offer quality performance for air handlers and cooling towers on the roof to secondary chilled water pumps in the basement

We Can Help You Reduce Energy by 30%

Our mission is to help our customers manage their buildings' energy costs, improve reliability, and enhance performance while having a positive impact on the environment.
CLICK HERE to find out how.


Visit our website today to learn about the design flexibility of a Morton building and the endless possibilities of partnering with our designBUILD team.


Wood construction is both cost and energy efficient. Check out Morton Buildings and our designBUILD team online today to discover all the benefits of post-frame construction.


When choosing a metal-clad building for your next construction project, consider Morton Buildings, Inc., and their designBUILD team, we’ll make your dream a reality.

Bluebeam® Revu® simplifies digital facilities document management from design review to leveraging as-builts, maintenance manuals and O&Ms submittals.

Yaskawa drives offer quality performance for air handlers and cooling towers on the roof to secondary chilled water pumps in the basement

We Can Help You Reduce Energy by 30%

Our mission is to help our customers manage their buildings' energy costs, improve reliability, and enhance performance while having a positive impact on the environment.
CLICK HERE to find out how.


 
07/22/2014

How to keep building occupants safe during the hot season.

07/21/2014

Spaces grow denser as the industry emerges from a slump.

07/18/2014

Study ranks states on fuel and consumption.

07/16/2014

Enhance cleaning practices at your educational facilities.

07/11/2014

Tenants have low tolerance for even one pest sighting, a new survey reveals.

07/10/2014

Battery installations will fuel federal research.

07/03/2014

An ongoing pilot program targets carbon neutrality.

06/27/2014

Potential substitute chemicals boast a low global warming potential.

06/26/2014

Tap into the DOE’s new data stream for renewable energy.

06/23/2014

What to do when the rain stops and the flood recedes.

06/18/2014

Mitigation policies grow in response to changing climate.

06/17/2014

The 2014 World Cup welcomes six LEED-certified arenas.

06/11/2014

An updated study now observes local consequences.

06/06/2014

New survey reveals increasing interest in off-site work.

06/04/2014

Gain ground on sustainability goals.

05/30/2014

With World Environment Day quickly approaching, now is the perfect time for cleaning professionals to think about implementing a green cleaning program or review green products currently in use.

05/28/2014

In 2013, approximately 6.5 million people were employed in the renewable energy industry worldwide.

05/27/2014

Saving money through energy management strategies in Canadian healthcare institutions just got easier.

05/22/2014

A recent study has revealed that the bacteria Legionella, commonly found in fresh water, is able to survive in certain automobile windshield washer fluids.

05/21/2014

Industrial symbiosis is essential to a company’s environmental efforts and can even drive profits.

Page 1 of 43
FirstPrevious[1]2345678910NextLast

Sponsored Links