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The introduction of information technologies into teaching and learning prompted educators to reexamine the spaces where learning takes place and to design new learning spaces that take fuller advantages of the possibilities that technology offers. The work done on learning spaces has been extremely valuable and serves as the foundation for an expanded look at other factors that affect learning and the context in which learning spaces exist. Those factors include space, but a broader look at the conditions and circumstances of learning reveals that learning is equally influenced by people, by technology and the resources it affords access to, and by the cultural backdrop against which learning takes place. These elements come together in a new, broader discussion of learning environments, which builds on the resources and knowledge generated about learning spaces.
The term learning environment encompasses learning resources and technology, means of teaching, modes of learning, and connections to societal and global contexts. The term also includes human behavioral and cultural dimensions, including the vital role of emotion in learning, and it requires us to examine and sometimes rethink the roles of teachers and students. The focus on information technology in education is expanding from the enhancement of learning spaces to include factors beyond hardware, software, and the network. The learning environment is a composite of human practices and material systems, much as an ecology is the combination of living things and the physical environment.
Articles and Reports
- The Connected Learning Environment, EDUCAUSE Brief, July 2013. This brief describes three hallmark characteristics of connected learning and provides several examples that illustrate each characteristic.
- Privacy Considerations in Cloud-Based Teaching and Learning Environments, ELI White Paper, November 2010.
- The following EDUCAUSE Quarterly Magazine themed issues contain various articles on Learning Enviroments;
- Making the Case for Space: Three Years of Empirical Research on Learning Environments, EDUCAUSE Quarterly, Vol. 33, No. 3, 2010
- Reflections on Play, Pedagogy, and World of Warcraft, EDUCAUSE Quarterly, Vol. 33, No. 3, 2010
- Eight Simple Ways to Embrace the "Froom", EDUCAUSE Quarterly, Vol. 32, No. 4, 2009
- Learning Environments: Where Space, Technology, and Culture Converge, ELI white paper, October 2009
- ELI 7 Things You Should Know About...
- Active Learning Classrooms Pilot Evaluation: Fall 2007 Findings and Recommendations, University of Minnesota, 2007. Report and Web Site
- New Learning Environments for the 21st Century, John Seely Brown, Aspen Symposium 2005
- EDUCAUS Learning Initiative 2010 Annual Meeting, "Learning Environments for a Web 2.0 World"
- EDUCAUSE Learning Initiative 2009 Online Fall Focus Session, "Flattening the Classroom: Building Collaborative Learning Environments"
- EDUCAUSE Learning Initiative 2008 Fall Focus Session, "Revisting Learning Space Design"
Conference Sessions, Videos, and Web Seminars
- The Future of Learning Environments, EDUCAUSE Video, July 2010
- Building Best Practices for Data-Driven Assessment of Technology-Enabled Learning Spaces, ELI Annual Meeting, January 2010.
- Stanford University's Wallenberg Hall: Looking Back, Looking Forward, ELI Annual Meeting, January 2010.
- Clickers and Peer Instruction: A Powerful Way to Improve Student Engagement and Learning, but Only If You Do It Right, ELI Web Seminar, October 05, 2009
- A Space of One's Own: Learning Environments Derived from User-Centered Discovery Techniques, EDUCAUSE Live!, November 21, 2008
- Guidelines for Implementing Authentic Tasks in Web-Based Learning Environments, ELI Web Seminar, November 3, 2008
- Creating Learning Environments that Promote Active Learning, Critical Thinking, Collaborative Learning, and Knowledge Creation, A Solutions in Action Webcast, September 21, 2009
- Powerful But Not a Panacea: Virtual Worlds as a Tool for Situational Learning, ELI Web Seminar, February 19, 2008
- Assessing What Students Learn in Technology-Based Learning Environments, ELI Web Seminar, September 15, 2006
Library Items on this Topic
EDUCAUSE Library Items for Learning Environments
- The Physics and Meaning of Flight: A Case Study in Student-Centered Learning Across Institutions
October 7, 2013
Key Takeaways The U.S. Air Force Academy and Colorado College, a small, private liberal arts institution, collaborated on a physics course on aircraft design with students from b…
- Can the Current Model of Higher Education Survive MOOCs and Online Learning?
October 7, 2013
Not all U.S. colleges and universities will disappear as a result of new technologies, but clearly some will. If higher education institutions embrace the status quo, they will no longer be in…
- The Connected Learning Environment
July 29, 2013
Connected learning environments are changing education, student engagement, and college completion. While e-learning often connotes delivery of information in a sequential, linear fashion, th…
- New Technology-based Models for Postsecondary Learning: Conceptual Frameworks and Research Agendas
June 3, 2013
This report is the result of a National Science Foundation-Sponsored Computing Research Association Workshop held at MIT on January 9-11, 2013. This workshop developed a framework for understan…
- Dynamic Trio: Anytime, Anyplace, Any Path
May 31, 2013
A session at the Southeast Regional Conference
CGTS's current strategy is to build on our existing capabilities to combine instructional delivery, learning environment, and technology into a blended learning model. Instructional delivery…
- Hipsters and Hobos: Learning by Becoming in a Retro Virtual World
May 30, 2013
A session at the Southeast Regional Conference
How can a virtual world facilitate immersive learning? An instructional designer worked with American Studies instructors to develop virtual 1930s and 1950s re-creations for their classes. What d…
- Multiple Lessons Learned from Implementing MOOC Environments at San Jose State University
April 4, 2013
A session at the ELI Online Spring Focus Session: Learning and the MOOC
Provost Ellen Junn will briefly describe how SJSU partnered with two MOOC providers (edX and Udacity) to offer four courses for college credit. She'll summarize a number of significant implica…
- On the Cutting Edge: Innovative Services That Blend Technology with Purpose
February 13, 2013
A session at the West/Southwest Regional Conference
Join this lively session for a look at three exciting and innovative services being offered to meet new challenges on our campuses including data management, the need to rethink and repurpose physi…
- Creating the Virtual Classroom
February 12, 2013
Through the proliferation of high-speed Internet services, integrated multimedia components, and innovative collaboration software, technology has facilitated distance learning in higher educatio…
- How and Why to Leave Your LMS for a Customized Teaching and Learning Environment Using Google Sites and Google+
February 6, 2013
A session at the EDUCAUSE Learning Initiative Annual Meeting
This session will take attendees through the ideas, research, conclusions, decisions, and development that led to a functional online course, all but abandoning the traditional LMS for a new envi…