Harvard University, Cambridge, MA
Jones Architecture was hired by the Faculty of Arts and Sciences to consult on learning environments and guide the effort to re-think the typical classroom. Through a series of brainstorming sessions with a committee of faculty, administration, and information technology staff, a goal for the classroom was developed and implemented in Harvard Hall room 202.
Contrary to expectations about what is necessary to facilitate change in classrooms, the design committee agreed that a low tech rather than high tech approach would do best to support new modes of learning and teaching for all faculty who have varying levels of experience. The classroom is equipped with mobile tables and chairs, re-configurable for any teaching mode, ample power for lap-tops and devices, and an abundance of writable surfaces on available wall space and mobile easels. As a “pilot” classroom we are excited to see how this design is modified using feedback from faculty as it is implemented in other classrooms across campus.
In early 2018, Jones Architecture was asked back to Harvard University Faculty of Arts and Sciences to develop solutions for the remaining four classrooms in Harvard Hall. Initial conversations have focused on the lessons learned from this pilot classroom—what has worked? what could have been done differently? etc. We are currently working with Harvard FAS to renovate the remainder of the interior at Harvard Hall to update all learning environments.