If the walls could talk…

lecture theatre

Across colleges and universities there are a variety of rooms and areas in which learning takes place, sometimes there is teaching and sometimes there isn’t.

Lecture theatres are used to deliver lectures, students use the library to read and discover and classrooms can be used for a range of activities.

If the spaces we use for teaching and learning could speak to us, what would they say?

Would we want to listen?


There is an institutional memory within those walls that is inaccessible and lost every time the learners leave the room. The room doesn’t remember what worked well or what could have been better. The spaces, if they could store experiences and feedback, would know what was the ideal environment for different learning activities.

What could we do about it?

The spaces across colleges and universities are core to teaching and learning. Are we using them effectively to enhance and enrich the learning journey?

One question that gives different responses is, does the environment in which we learn have any or a significant impact on that journey?

Some people say that they can teach anywhere and often do. Other people say that all teachers can remember a time when they tried to teach in a poor room.

We know learning can happen anytime and anywhere, the key question is does the environment in which it is happening, make that more effective or does it impair the learning process?

Could we use data gathered from teachers and students, as well as space usage, to inform and improve teaching and learning?

What would those improvements look like?

Teaching staff often have little power or control over the spaces they work in. However could we change that?

Could Jisc help build the tools required to make the gathering and analysis of that data easier as well as exploring how to best act upon the insights produced to make changes?

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