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Higher Education Common Spaces for Today’s Learners

students studying in a higher education common space

If we understand that the future of work is going to be centered on creative, collaborative pursuits, then it makes sense that we also adjust our higher education common spaces to meet similar demands. After all, students need to train for the type of work environments they will be entering!

In order to both meet the aesthetic and functional expectations of modern learners and adequately prepare students for their future, higher education needs to consider interior spaces that meet these needs. This doesn’t just apply to the classroom, however. Common spaces such as library lounges, the iconic quad, and study spaces located in shared dormitory space are all important to creating a modern, functional space for creativity and collaboration.

Pick Seating That Moves (With) You

One of the top considerations is designing a flexible space that can provide quiet, solitary reflection or adjust to be part of a bustling collaborative discussion. Choosing seating arrangements and furniture that can adjust to different needs is one way to optimize the space for a variety of uses.

Get a Charge

Today’s learners need a place to plug in . . . literally. Gorgeous seating designed with work in mind will go unused if there’s no convenient place to plug in a laptop or charge a phone. Make sure to build functional electrical outlets into any planned higher education common space.

Bring the Outside In

Well-lit spaces are not only inviting, they keep young learners energized and inspired. Using natural lighting through the inclusion of large windows and skylights will cut down on the cost of adding artificial lights and create a space that brightens minds, too.

Make Secret Nooks

While our vision of the future is often full of collaborative discussions and group work, the truth is that creativity requires quiet time alone, too. Design this into your functional spaces and make sure that every corner and nook is put to good use. By providing semi-secluded spaces that encourage quiet work, you’ll be giving students everything they need.

Students Require Well-Designed Higher Education Common Spaces

While the classroom may be the most common space to get redesign consideration, the truth is a lot of today’s learners are doing their work outside the classroom. Whether it’s because they take online classes or because instructors are using “flipped classroom” models to better use their time together, students need spaces where they can get work done without interruption and with inspiration. A well-designed college campus will make sure they get what they need. Contact Tangram today to see how to create common higher education spaces that will make the grade.

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