New Designs for New Times: An Exploration of Learning Spaces

On the 30th September 2016, the NIDL hosted Professor Mike Keppell, Pro Vice-Chancellor Learning Transformations, Swinburne University, Australia. As part of our regular visiting scholar series Mike gave a presentation entitled, “New Designs for New Times: 21st Century Learning Spaces”.


The presentation explored distributed and personal learning environments across the increasingly seamless spectrum of physical, blended and virtual learning spaces. It argued that higher education in the 21st Century is no longer defined by tangible boundaries of a ‘physical campus’ but by the entire student experience, whether that involves the physical corridors of the campus, attending face-to-face classes, or participating in fully or partially online courses. In addition, the student experience may also involve connecting to virtual environments from home, a local cafe, on the bus or participating in professional practice away from the physical campus. Professor Keppell’s talk explored the diverse range of spaces that can be used to enrich the learning and teaching experience for both academics and students and raised the importance of the need to recognise and purposefully design for the changing nature of learning spaces in higher education.