Education 129

Education 129


3700 rue McTavish


96 students

Alignment with Principles for Designing Teaching and Learning Spaces

Academic Challenge

  • Layout: Substantial work surfaces for notebooks, laptops, and textbooks
  • Furniture: Comfortable, adjustable-height chairs on wheels permit students to work individually or in groups at their tables.
  • Technologies: Access to resources: table-top power plugs for student laptops, LMS, internet (via student laptops). Multiple sources and screens for simultaneous display of different learning materials. Lecture recording permits individual review of courses materials after attending class.
  • Lighting/colour: Appropriate lighting for individual work. Yellow accents on tabletops and other surfaces brighten the room. 

Learning with Peers

  • Layout: Promotes face-to-face communication with a unique small group table design on each tier. Students can move about classroom with ease due to centre aisle. Unobstructed sightlines.
  • Furniture: Chairs on wheels permit students to turn and discuss with those nearby, supporting a variety of collaborative learning approaches. Rounded tables allow students to work together collaboratively in small groups of up to six.
  • Technologies: Shared workspaces on writable whiteboards at each table. Videoconferencing permits collaborating with students at external sites.
  • Acoustics: Sound zones support multiple simultaneous conversations among students. Appropriate amplification is available, with a push-button microphone for students at each table.
  • Lighting/colour: Different lighting patterns and levels support different learning activities.

Experiences with Faculty

  • Layout: Instructor is not limited to the “front of the room” and instead has access to all students due to unobstructed sightlines and the centre aisle.
  • Furniture: The podium does not interfere with sightlines or movement, and has a large surface for instructional materials.  
  • Technologies: Dual-source projection, multiple classroom technology sources (document camera, data projector, computer, Sympodium, etc.) and multiple screens permit display of different learning materials. Videoconferencing feedback screens permit the instructor to view the image on the screen that is being projected to an external site. 
  • Acoustics: Sound zones ensure that not only are students able to hear the instructor, but that the instructor is also able to hear the students. Wireless and wired (headset) audio amplification available for instructors.
  • Lighting/colour: Lighting patterns support multiple types of teaching tasks.

Campus Environment

  • University standards have been applied, including improvements to lighting and IT consistent with teaching and learning needs.
  • Designed for all populations using the space: well-lit, with standardized room controls to facilitate use of multiple classrooms.  
  • Classrooms that incorporate elements of active and collaborative learning are part of a vision for campus learning spaces of many different sizes.

High-Impact Practices (HIPs)

  • Both physical and virtual affordances help maximize HIPs for student learning within and beyond this classroom.


IT instructions

Photograph before renovation

Education 129 (before)


McGill University is on land which has long served as a site of meeting and exchange amongst Indigenous peoples, including the Haudenosaunee and Anishinabeg nations. We acknowledge and thank the diverse Indigenous people whose footsteps have marked this territory on which peoples of the world now gather.

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