Learning Spaces and Learning Design

As we begin to think about remodeling learning spaces in Erickson Hall, one of the key thoughts that comes to mind is how learning spaces relate to learning design. When we think about learning design in face-2-face, online, and hybrid courses, student outcomes and pedagogies play an integral role in how design fits into course planning. So as we think about how learning spaces affect student learning, or opportunities to learn, design becomes more than just a plan on an interior design layout. Learning space design becomes an iterative process of creating spaces where students can collaborate, create, write, explore, and push the boundaries of the learning process. Does the space present a wide boundary of comfort for students to explore variable levels of learning process?

Applying the principles of backward course design to learning space design can be considered a good start to conceptualization of the learning design of a new or remodeled space.

  • Analyze the space for physical characteristics, size, and possible layout options. Crowdsource feedback from stakeholders if necessary.
  • Design the space in terms of learning outcomes. What learning experiences do you want students to have in the space? How will the design affect student learning experiences? Does the space accommodate different learning styles?
  • Create/Construct according to the learning design
  • Assess the space through student feedback and adjust when possible

One of the key points that I’ve learned through several learning space design design and feedback cycles is that learning design needs to be as flexible as the furniture in the room. As learning outcomes and pedagogy change, the space should be easy to adapt to those changes. It may mean removing physical items or adding more learning tools, but remaining flexible at a university is a key characteristic to supporting the teaching and learning process.


Redesigning the 133 Erickson Hall Common Area

In the near future, the space just inside the doors of 133 Erickson Hall will be redesigned to accommodate for upcoming changes to college services. The new space will be even more focused on student collaboration and creativity; a digital media maker space if you will. To get feedback on the redesign of the space, I tasked the Technical Interns working for the Center this summer to think about learning space design and maker spaces for teacher education students. Their ideas were literally put down on paper using graph paper and PlayDoh. Below are some of their ideas which will be incorporated into the final design.

Redesign example 2 by TIES

Redesign image by TIES

All for designs with PlayDoh

When the renovation of the space is complete, ideas presented by the students that get included in the final design will be highlighted in this blog. Be sure to check back in a few months!


Hiring new Technical Interns in Education

The Center for Teaching and Technology is hiring new Technical Interns in Educations (TIEs) for Fall 2015. The deadline for applying is Wednesday, April 15th and interviews will begin the week of April 20th. TIEs are the first line of support for faculty and graduate instructors teaching with technology, provide just-in-time support in the Erickson Hall technology classrooms and also assist with digital media projects at the Center for Teaching and Technology. This opportunity is available for all education majors who have been accepted to the program.

Please send your resume and a cover letter to: terrigus@msu.edu

TIES hiring flier

Spring Break 2015 Hours

Happy Spring Break 2015!

The Center will be closed during the week of March 9th – 13th with assistance by appointment only. All of the Technical Interns are home or elsewhere on break and I (Terri) am in and out of the office all week for meetings and a little vacation time. If you have equipment this due back this week, just bring it in after March 16th. If you need to make an appointment, please email: terrigus@msu.edu

Here are some interesting articles to read over the break to get you thinking about teaching and technology:

Nervous About Video Projects?

Digital Literacy, Engagement, and Digital Identity Development

When a Flipped-Classroom Pioneer Hands Off His Video Lectures, This Is What Happens

Annual Technology Conference – Registration is Open

The 31st Annual MSU College of Education Technology conference will be held on Saturday, November 15th, 2014 on the beautiful campus of Michigan State University in Erickson Hall from 8:30 am – 3:00 pm. Through a continued collaboration between the College of Education, the MSU College of Education Alumni Association and the Master of Arts in Educational Technology Program, this year’s conference will be FREE OF CHARGE to all attendees.

Conference Schedule

Doors open at 8:30 a.m. with light refreshments being served. Thank you to TechSmith for sponsoring breakfast. The conference officially begins at 9:00 a.m. with the featured presentation by Rebecca Garcia. The first morning concurrent sessions begin at 10:20 a.m and the second concurrent sessions begin at 11:20 a.m., followed by lunch on your own.  We will provide a list of local food options with the agenda handed out the day of the conference. Afternoon hands-on workshops will begin at 1:20 pm and last one hour and thirty minutes. For a full description of the concurrent sessions and the workshops, please follow the links below. You do not need to sign up for concurrent session, only the afternoon workshops require pre-registration.

Morning Concurrent Sessions

Afternoon workshops

Registration is now open! Follow this link to get started.

The hashtag for the conference is #coetc14

Thank you!

Terri Gustafson & Leigh Graves Wolf, PhD (2014 conference co-coordinators)
Center for Teaching & Technology / Master of Arts in Educational Technology
College of Education – Michigan State University
E: terrigus@msu.edu – P: 517-432-4329
Terri on Twitter: @tgustafson; @Centr4TeachTech
Leigh on Twitter: @gravesle @maet

Annual MSU College of Education Technology Conference – #coetc14 – Call for Proposals is OPEN!

The Call for Presentation and Workshop Proposals is OPEN!
What: Annual Educational Technology Conference, November 15, 2014
Where: Erickson Hall, Michigan State University
Proposals Due: September 15, 2014
Submit proposals here: http://goo.gl/pVsohz

This year’s conference continues the collaboration between the College of Education, the MSU College of Education Alumni Association and the Master of Arts in Educational Technology Program, and similar last year, the conference will be FREE OF CHARGE to all attendees. (Stay tuned for registration information!)

Presentations will be 45 minutes long and workshops will be 1 ½ hours long.  All workshops will be hands-on instruction.  Presenters will be informed of their acceptance by September 30th and will receive information about session times by October 15, 2014.  Thank you!

Rebecca Garcia photo

We are excited to announce that Rebecca Garcia will be the opening keynote. Rebecca is the Co-founder of CoderDojo NYC, a non-profit teaching youth to code. In 2013 she was awarded as a U.S. White House ‘Champion of Change’ for Tech Inclusion for her work to bring STEM education to underrepresented groups, especially youth and women.

Previously she was a Developer at Do Something, the largest non-profit for youth and social change, and CTO of Greatist, a health, fitness and wellness media startup. Currently she is a Developer Evangelist at Squarespace, empowering people to build their ideas on the web.


Terri Gustafson & Leigh Graves Wolf, Ph.D.
Center for Teaching & Technology/Master of Arts in Educational Technology
College of Education – Michigan State University
Erickson Hall
620 Farm Lane, Room 133
East Lansing, MI 48824
E: terrigus@msu.edu – P: 517-432-4329
Twitter: @tgustafson
Twitter: @gravesle @maet


Summer 2014 – Updates to site resources

Another academic year has come to an end and we are busy at the Center with equipment inventory, classroom cleaning, finding homes for items not claimed from our lost and found, and preparing for summer projects. One of the main projects for the Technical Interns this summer will be to update the content on this site, including photos, how-to videos, help guides, and resources. In addition, they have been tasked with designing their ideal model classroom. So I’ve asked the three Technical Interns working this summer to research and use their own on-the-job experience here in the College of Education to visualize their own idealized future classroom. I believe it is important that as future educators they have a vision of what technology they’d like to use in their own classrooms and how they’d like to use it with their students.

My goal this summer is to research how our current spaces are being utilized, learn how other institutions are using their active learning spaces, and create new space for multidisciplinary creative teaching and learning. In addition, I’ll be working on new partnerships in the college for learning portfolios and maker spaces.