The School of Engineering at the University of South Australia came to Woods Bagot with the ambition of creating a learning environment for the newly created combined ‘Foundation Studies’ in engineering, where four streams of 1st year students are introduced to the breadth of the field of Engineering through a range of collaborative, cross – disciplinary and sometimes competitive projects.
Whilst the school had not developed a brief of what this space might look like, they were convinced that if they were to attract and retain the right students, it would have to be a space where students were able to explore, discuss, search, study and socialise and where they would feel valued as Engineering students.
Woods Bagot worked with the School of Engineering to articulate the ambitions for the project in a ‘project vision’ which then, in effect, became the design brief. The space we have designed in response to that brief is an exciting, flexible work space made up of a number of zones, each enabling different learning modes, the whole facilitating the new pedagogies the school wishes to explore. The next step is working with the University to develop the future learning environment concept to meet the needs of other schools and campuses.