Loughborough University expands estate of high quality, flexible learning spaces on West Park campus.
Ford College is a large, mainly open-plan building, situated on West Park campus and previously rented out to a third party business. At the end of 2015, Loughborough University took back the building to create the West Park Teaching Hub, a new set of learning spaces intended to enhance the quality and variety of teaching rooms and informal work areas available within the West Park area of campus.
Following a competitive tender, Loughborough selected Pure AV to design and install audio visual systems for deployment in the newly created West Park Teaching Hub. Featuring a new set of learning spaces intended to enhance the quality and variety of teaching rooms and informal work areas, the development includes four, tiered lecture theatres, four flat teaching rooms, an informal learning space and digital signage throughout.
A core aspect of the audio visual design is the delivery of a consistent end-user experience so that regardless of the room type or location on campus, the audio visual technology and user interface encountered by academic room users is familiar. To achieve this, the University has established a standardised approach to equipment selection and programming.
The standard room set-up includes Extron touch screens and control, Panasonic projection and displays, Wolfvision visualisers, Teammate lecterns and lecture capture.
Teaching support manager at Loughborough University, Aaron Turlington-Smith explained;
It is important to create a familiar environment for the academic staff, they want to concentrate on lesson delivery free from anxiety about the technology they will have to use. This approach with the integration and programming completed by Pure AV has allowed us to create an effective teaching environment and offer academics the added comfort of a familiar interface for room usage.
A further objective of the West Park project was to increase the amount of informal learning spaces available to students. Caroline Pepper, learning environments manager, explained;
Prior to the introduction of the West Park Teaching Hub we had students walking considerable distances between lectures to find suitable areas for informal study and group work. Within West Park we have informal study areas adjacent to the formal teaching spaces so that when students filter out from timetabled lectures they have a comfortable area, equipped with collaborative furniture where they can continue with conversations and engage in group work activity.
The feedback from both students and academics on the facilities within the West Park Teaching Hub has been extremely positive. The post occupancy evaluation of the building completed by Caroline Pepper and her team revealing significant improvements in ratings of the facilities by both academics and students. The evidence from the qualitative feedback particularly positive about the consolidation of both formal and informal spaces within the one area.
The West Park Teaching Hub provides everything under one roof so I can stay all day, it's really productive for my studies.
The project itself was deployed without issue and delivered by the team at Pure AV ahead of schedule. From the point of view of project deployment, Aaron Turlington-Smith had this to say;
The project delivery at West Park Teaching Hub was fantastic. Communication (with Pure AV) was excellent throughout the project. Since the opening of the building, feedback from end users has been great, and the equipment has performed as envisaged, with no issues whatsoever.