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Entries in Education and Culture (53)


Campus Design and the Urban Interface 

Photo courtesy of Gensler

Last December, as part of Gensler’s firmwide Education Practice Area Next Gen Initiative, the London office, where I work, considered all the ways that education campuses interact with their immediate surroundings. We call this the Urban Interface.

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Librii: Five Points Toward an Evolving Library

Image courtesy of Gensler

One billion people live in Africa, but less than three percent of the population has access to broadband Internet.

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Starting the Discourse: Emerging Trends in Higher Education

At the beginning of October, Gensler’s Chicago office hosted its second event of four in a panel series on emerging trends in higher education. To continue the momentum from the first, session, Leveraging the Loop, in June, which culminated with Chicago being designated as “America’s Urban Campus,” Chi-ollege Town: Place Matters set the stage for a collaborative effort between Chicago’s institutions, businesses, and the city itself to harness a new kind of urban campus community. The panelists–Gwen Drury from the University of Wisconsin, Anijo Punnen Mathew from the Institute of Design at IIT, and Julie Burros from the City of Chicago–explored the question of what makes a true ”college town,” a construct strategically important to Chicago and its surrounding region.

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Education Research: How Do We Improve Libraries?

Designing college campuses that keep students happy and lead to better academic performance requires us to have a clear understanding of how students spend their time when they are on campus. It was this need that pushed Gensler to initiate a research project with the goal of mapping out the activities that constitute a typical student day. (Read/download a PDF of the final research report, "Changing Course: Connecting Campus Design to a New Kind of Student," here.) What we learned not only surprised us, but made it clear that it's time to rethink the design of college campuses and the buildings on them.

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Learning is Virtual, but Students Aren't

We talk a lot about the changes that technology is bringing to college campuses. New students are increasingly comfortable with mobile and collaborative technologies. Online research and resource databases, video lectures, and distance-learning models are challenging traditional mainstays of education from the large-lecture format to the university library.

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