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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
- 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…
- Resolving Instructional Challenges in Blended Courses
February 5, 2013
A session at the EDUCAUSE Learning Initiative Annual Meeting
In this interactive session, the presenter will introduce a protocol for improving blended courses; that protocol supplements the traditional "backwards design" process by helping instr…
- Innovating the 21st-Century University: It’s Time!
February 4, 2010
© 2010 Don Tapscott and Anthony D. Williams EDUCAUSE Review, vol. 45, no. 1 (January/February 2010): 16-29 Don Tapscott and Anthony D. Williams Don Tapscott ( http://dontapscott…
- Eight Simple Ways to Embrace the "Froom"
December 22, 2009
Key Takeaways The “froom” concept — forever in the classroom — employs technology to provide a nonlinear, hybrid, always accessible learning environment to engage students and motiv…
- Learning Environments: Where Space, Technology, and Culture Converge
October 29, 2009
The introduction of information technologies into higher education added new dimensions to the educational enterprise and led to investigations into how the design of learning spaces affects teac…
- ELI Session: Creative Collaboration and Immersive Engagement – The Hyperlinked Campus
February 16, 2010
Emerging technologies for communication and creation of content afford the possibility of the connected, "always on" educational environment. The Hyperlinked Campus is a model of open c…
- The Learning Space
February 18, 2009
The primary intent of this web blog is to provide an environment which offers mediated resources in teaching and learning, guidance in classroom design, instructional design, and digital media cr…
- Learning Space 3.0: When Real and Virtual Spaces Collide
September 30, 2008
Demands for flexibility, collaborative learning opportunities, and access to digital information are resulting in a new design paradigm for learning space that transcends academic disciplines. Co…
- Multimedia Services: Strategic Assets for Institutional Success
October 23, 2007
This research bulletin surveys the chief components of contemporary multimedia services in colleges and universities and describes some emerging practices for deploying and sustaining them in an …
- Entering the Interaction Age: Implementing a Future Vision for Campus Learning Spaces
January 1, 2007
© 2007 Andrew J. Milne EDUCAUSE Review, vol. 42, no. 1 (January/February 2007): 12–31 Entering the Interaction Age: Implementing a Future Vision for Campus Learning Spaces...Today …