Collaboration to create Collaborative Learning Environments

– Exploring a new model – Beyond the computer commons and group study – requiring collaboration of faculty, librarians and technology specialists.
– Players: library staff, instructional support, students, it staff, architects, faculty.
– Recommendations: develop a plan for the introduction of CLE’s in libraries, computer labs and other campus spaces.
– Library services: foot traffic down, but network traffic up.
– Ramification for service models, space utilization and staff allocation… Computers and laptop spaces being fully utilized. Peer reference model so Librarians could concentrate more on formal instruction. Relaxed food and drink regulations.

Instructional Research & Theory
– disconnect between teaching environment and how students learn in other areas… doesn’t make sense.
– in past collaboration was called cheating…
– workforce and society demands teamwork, communication skills, and problem solving.
– re-thinking concepts of teaching, learning, classroom, assessments, etc.
– Positive interdependence: mutual goals, mutual rewards, interdependent roles, structured tasks.
– Appropriate groups sized, heterogeneous, 3-5 per team.
– Group processing: building team skills, feedback to teams and teachers.

Environment to facilitate collaborative computing:
– IT: ubiquitous computing, anytime anywhere, hardware upgrades – multimedia labs, classrooms, etc., Student expectations.
– Things we learned: Combinations of individual and group work areas; classroom, informal learning, workstation areas; support staff – IT and research based; PC & Mac; presentation hardware (whiteboard smartboards); Furniture – all mobile chairs tables & walls!; comfortable and inviting; Needs to be centrally located. Amenities (coffee n food, parking, long hours of operation.
– Before: The computer lab in basement – lots of computers with 2 student staff.
– After: three sections – individual workstations, collaborative learning environment, 2 classrooms
– collaborative learning environment – teaching space laptops whiteboards, start board, all on wheels; groups work area – movable tables chairs, whiteboards desktop computers wireless access; informal study area – leather chairs coffee informal.

– Help faculty learn about, and how to use the new collaborative spaces.
– First area should be the comfortable seating area, then collaborative space behind, and teaching areas behind that.