Classroom design has been the same for decades with the students' seats always turned to face a common board, and rarely does any of this change. Researchers at North Carolina State University are challenging this static nature by developing a flexible and dynamic classroom. This new paradigm has many advantages including lower costs and the ability to be reconfigured for the students' needs.
One of the things the researchers kept in mind when developing the new classroom was that students are coming to classes with their own technology, so having to purchase and maintain laptops for an entire class is not necessary. The typical computer classroom costs around $34,700 but with the new design the cost drops by just over twenty thousand dollars to $14,500. By utilizing mobile infrastructure so whiteboards, desks, and tables can be repositioned the classroom can also be made suitable for students with special needs, both physical and mental.
The flexible classroom program has already been launched and the researchers have been working with universities to employ its concepts. Now the researchers intend to develop materials to guide others to make their own flexible classrooms.
Source: North Carolina State University