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Social Spaces / Third Spaces LEARNING COMMONS / MEDIA CENTER Source: Learning Per Square Foot article by KI Truly optimal learning environments must be more than revamped classrooms that support laptops and promote collaboration with other students. Learning spaces must also reflect a network of connected places outside the classroom, where learning can flow from one space to the next and the next, and a sense of community is fostered. MyWay lounge chairs, Strive café stools, Athens tables LOBBY / LOUNGE Hub modular seating, Lyra lounge chairs CAFE / DINING Mobile devices and wireless technology allow learning to occur anywhere, any time. Therefore an entire campus can be considered a learning space and designed accordingly. The right design will support technology tools and promote spontaneous and unencumbered student-to-student and student-to-faculty interaction. The right design will create a community of learning in every square foot and leverage space for “socially catalytic” interactions, areas where students and faculty can meet informally or where students can work together on projects. Commons areas (social spaces) have historically served as a place for students to gather for conversation and social activities. Now when students meet in a commons area, they’re likely to bring laptops, smart phones, and other electronic devices that allow them to socialize and pursue academics at the same time. Mobility and ease of furniture reconfiguration is critical for leveraging the learning opportunities that common spaces afford. Doing so will allow for a multitude of functions—group projects, independent study space, areas for presentation preparation and practice. Planning and maintaining areas where students casually bump into one another can support impromptu student engagement and further foster a community of learning. Grazie 4-leg chairs, Athens tables LIVING RoomScape system, Doni task chair p. 46 | Social Spaces