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Improvements to learning and teaching spaces this summer

30 July 2013

A range of centrally bookable learning and teaching spaces are being upgraded over the summer in order to provide a more pleasant working environment and enhanced facilities.

Clock at UCL

Colleagues in Information Services Division and UCL Estates have been collaborating to plan the refurbishment and upgrading of a range of learning and teaching spaces across the Bloomsbury campus this summer. This will transform some of the older learning spaces into study environments befitting UCL's reputation.

Having based the plans on feedback received via recent staff and student surveys, the team hopes that these refurbishments will work well for teaching and enhance the student experience.

Teaching spaces

A common complaint in the staff survey was the lack of a managed PC in some of the teaching rooms. From the start of the 2013/14 academic year, the team will be installing a managed PC in every centrally bookable lecture theatre and classroom currently without one.

Other improvements are also taking place:

  • The sound equipment in the Cruciform lecture theatres will be replaced while they are closed as part of the Cruciform Hub works, and a new digital sound system will be installed in the Darwin B40 LT for teaching and Lunch Hour Lectures.
  • Classrooms receiving upgrades include Anatomy B15 and 23 Gordon Square 203. Older Hitachi projectors in the Gordon Square houses will also be replaced with more reliable units.
  • Foster Court 130 and 132 will be upgraded to incorporate a new type of teaching station in which the document camera is sunk into the desk (see illustration below). This will provide a much larger writing and display surface and the team will be evaluating whether these provide benefits for subjects which use writing heavily in their teaching.
Desk with embedded document camera
  • The 1-19 Torrington Place 113 computer room will receive a makeover and the teaching facilities in DMS Watson G15 will be upgraded too, with a new teaching station and display screens being installed.
  • Over the next year, 26 Gordon Square B32 will become a room that’s suitable for project-based teaching and for evaluating new technologies.

Student spaces

A number of student areas are also being upgraded and refurbished:

  • In the DMS Watson Science Library, the locations of the undergraduate and postgraduate computer facilities will be swapped in order to form a quieter study area on the mezzanine level. This project is a UCL Estates collaboration with UCL Library Services and Information Services Division.
  • Chadwick B04 is ceasing to be a bookable teaching room for most of the year, becoming an open-access PC room instead. The room will contain 23 PCs and three laptop areas where students can do group work using their own technology, which can be connected to a shared screen.
  • Pearson B01 is being redecorated to provide a more attractive environment with new signage to enhance use.
  • As well as these central spaces, around 30 ‘quick win’ projects, managed by UCL Estates, will transform a range of departmental spaces into attractive student common rooms and social study areas.

Other projects

Two other projects will affect learning and teaching spaces this summer:

  • All PCs in student rooms, teaching spaces and halls of residence will be upgraded to the Desktop@UCL service, providing a modern Windows 7 computing environment.
  • All printers in student spaces will be replaced with new multi-function devices running the print@UCL service, supporting print, copy and scan and mobile printing.

Further information

  • To find out more, view the works schedule, which is updated regularly. 
  • If you have any comments on any of these projects, please contact the E-Learning Environments team by emailing ele@ucl.ac.uk.

Page last modified on 30 jul 13 10:44


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