During the last term break a group of staff from Good News Lutheran College, Tarneit attended the Transitions Conference as part of the ongoing research project that is being conducted by Melbourne University into the impact that learning environments can have on teacher change and student outcomes. I’ve met with them since the conference to discuss the impact and learning from the conference. It was obviously inspiring and thought provoking.
The Innovative Learning Environments and Teacher Change group (ILETC) have this week released a range of conference resources on their website including slides from presentations. ILETC is doing the research to answer the questions that many people have about a contemporary transformation of learning in the area of the impact that learning environments have on both teaching and learning. I can highly recommend reading their Learning Environment Design and Use report which was released last December. It is a must read if you are going to be renovating or designing learning spaces in your schools. If you cannot find a copy on their website, then please contact me and I can email you a copy.
Some more information about the Transitions 19 Conference:
Transitions 19: 02-04 October
The University of Melbourne brought together 130 educators, architects, researchers, policy makers and representatives of industry from 11 countries to explore what is involved in the journey from traditional to more innovative learning spaces. This is the third year the ILETC project team have organised Transitions.
The conference followed a format that used an innovative learning environment to demonstrate the ideas being presented and incorporate workshop activities. The ILETC team collaborated with project partners, Steelcase, to design an experience that supported traditional approaches to sharing academic research, accommodated a large audience and also demonstrated the influence of the physical environment on engagement and learning.
Participants experienced presentations by academic and practitioner researchers from across the world. At the end of each of the themes, participants became involved in the research work of the ILETC by completing a variety of workshop or discussion activities that were designed to provide experiences of different modes of learning. We then provided input by completing short activities such as surveys or checklists. This year the project tested the Spatial Typologies which are currently in development.
This input is currently being analysed and will gather evidence into how teachers can use the untapped potential of Innovative Learning Environments (ILEs) to improve learning outcomes for students. It will identify whether there is a link between quality teaching and effective use of ILEs and develop practical tools to assist teachers to adapt their teaching practices to maximise deeper learning. It is exciting to know that this research is happening and will validate many of the practices which we as teachers are beginning to implement. If you are interested in reading more about this research the ILETC website is a source of much information at http://www.iletc.com.au/
Education Officer – Learning