To develop a teaching estate that is fit for purpose.
UCL’s central London location is undoubtedly a huge asset, and an important reason why students choose to study with us.
We know that the quality of the teaching estate, and the use we make of it, can make a big difference to staff and students alike – facilitating great teaching and ensuring students are learning in comfortable, well-equipped and inspiring spaces.
However, accommodating a growing student body on a dispersed campus in central London is a challenge.
We expect that the Connected Curriculum’s emphasis on collaborative learning and learning through research is likely to change teaching patterns over the coming years and we need to ensure that our space management is agile enough to respond.
We want to capitalise on the potential of technology to extend and enrich the classroom experience to online learners through virtual classrooms, ‘flipping’ methodologies and tools and streaming.
Over the period covered by this strategy, UCL will expand into East London with the opening of a sizeable campus on the site of the Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park. This also provides an opportunity for us to experiment with new ways of teaching and learning, including spaces for professional and executive education.
Our priorities for objective six
1. Improve timetabling and rooming
To resolve the most pressing problems with timetabling and rooming.
We will have overhauled our timetabling systems (and the resource planning systems that support them) to ensure that we are able to plan effectively for programme delivery and optimize our use of the teaching estate by 2021.
- Update to follow.
2. Make our teaching estate work for us
To review our academic structures, including the shape of the teaching year, to ensure that we are making the most efficient use of our teaching estate without compromising the experience of staff or students.
To establish an Education Spaces Quality Working Group to develop standards for the fit-out of teaching spaces and to oversee the room refresh programme against these standards.
We will have significantly enhanced the quality of UCL’s learning campus by 2021 as our programme of capital investment begins to transform UCL, with a new student centre (bringing together all student services together under one roof for the first time), substantially refurbished buildings for UCL Laws and the Bartlett School of Architecture, and new catering and social spaces.
We will have established facilities in Bloomsbury and in UCL East to kit out as experimental learning spaces, and use these as a test-bed for the potential future evolution of education spaces within UCL.
- The new Student Centre opened, providing 1,000 more study seats, including flexible spaces to facilitate collaborative learning; a Student Enquiries Centre; Student Support and Wellbeing service; two quiet contemplation rooms. (February 2019)
- Develop a Teaching Spaces Standard: formal evaluation of all teaching spaces from staff and students was ‘soft launched’ in 2018/19 and will be actively promoted from the start of 2019/20 to both ensure that any easily rectifiable problems are promptly addressed and to inform and support the effective prioritisation of future refurbishment projects.
- Over £250,000 to be invested this summer to refurbish the Graduate Hub and create a dedicated space for postgraduate research students (June 2019)
- New/refitted spaces: 1-19 Torrington Place features 10 new teaching rooms of capacities ranging from 18 – 120 seats. The Teaching Pop Up in the Main Quad – consisting of two 100 seat and two 50 seat teaching rooms – and a further 91 seat teaching room on the second floor of Central House. Bentham House (UCL School of Laws) and 22 Gordon Street (Bartlett School of Architecture) successfully commissioned. (March 2018)
- Technology Assisted Learning (TEAL) room opened at Torrington Place (January 2018)
- Substantial increase in education space capacity in 2018 (November 2017)
3. Improve module registration
To review our module confirmation and registration systems to ensure that our academic processes facilitate the efficient production of the timetable.
We will support faculties to review programme structures and their modules portfolio to ensure that we are delivering teaching in the most efficient way possible, without compromising academic considerations or student choice.
- Exam Timetable published on February 28, four weeks earlier than 5 years ago. The earlier publication date was made possible by the exceptional engagement by students with the December deadline for module registration. (February 2018)
- Phase 2 of the Academic Model Project to update Portico, UCL’s Student Record System has collected data which will enable such reviews in future (January 2018)