Nov 262014

Faculty and staff from the College of Education and other MSU institutions experienced the College’s latest innovation in space and technology when they attended an Open House for Room 132 in Erickson Hall. The redesigned room is the result of collaboration between members of the CEPSE faculty, the Dean’s Office, and the CEPSE/COE Design Studio.

As a newly refurbished technology-rich space for teaching and learning, Room 132 is designed to be a “virtual flex classroom” in which technologies and class configurations can be changed and modified quickly to support almost any pedagogical strategy or preference. Based on agile design principles, the redesign emphasizes the ability to adjust easily and quickly when solutions are sought through research, planning, and implementation strategies.  As such, the room is a kind of “fly-by-wire” environment where software (as opposed to hardware) solutions are used whenever possible. The space also makes use of other flexible elements like large monitors on two sides of the classroom, telepresence devices like Double and Kubi, and moveable chairs and desks.

Dean Don Heller was in attendance and spoke to the gathering briefly on the importance of the College’s continued stake in advancing educational technology at MSU and beyond. Patrick Dickson was also on hand to give the audience an historical perspective on the College of Education’s experiences with technological innovation as he described the role Room 132 played as the College’s first computer lab. Design Studio Director John Bell gave the event’s main presentation, aided by graduate student assistants of the Design Studio and members of the SLATE (Synchronous Learning and Teaching Environments) Research Group.

After the Open House, CEPSE faculty members Jodene Fine, Ken Frank, Christine Greenhow, Mike Leahy, and Rand Spiro led a Roundtable to discuss pedagogical innovations they have tried in the room. The faculty members detailed how they modified certain pedagogical strategies to better take advantage of the space and technology available.

Do you need to do something similar or does this spotlight spark an idea for something you’d like to try? Come see us in the Design Studio (401b Erickson Hall) or contact us at We’d love to be a part of what you do!