"In this new library, students will find a range of environments, from noisy to quiet, in which they can work on an assignment alone or in a group; receive coaching from a peer consultant in research, writing, or presenting; practice a new skill or play with a new idea; learn something unexpectedly; engage easily with each other in spaces engineered to accommodate the sounds of natural conversation; or curl up by the fireplace in a contemplative space with the best views on campus. Students will do all of these things in a building that was crafted with their needs in mind—the right lighting, the right furniture, the right resources, the right services, the right spaces, and the right amount of flexibility. "Going to the library" will take on a whole new meaning as the Mary Idema Pew Library Learning and Information Commons becomes and integral part of every student's experience at Grand Valley."
If you are about to embark on a commons project that involves co-locating services, Rick Anderson, U. of Utah's Marriott Library, recommends eight principles "to bear in mind when faced with requests from other entities on campus to occupy space in the library."
library does not belong to you
2. Say “yes”
or “no” based on strategy, not defensiveness
creates political capital
4. Begin all
space-sharing relationships with a formal document… that clearly lays out
rights and responsibilities of both parties.
5. Bear in mind
that if the library hosts other services, patrons will likely experience them
as “library services”
6. Don’t treat
your guests like tenants, or even like guests; treat them like fellow citizens.
partners to meetings and events, maybe even on a recurring basis.
"In 1968, the Harold F. Johnson Library at Hampshire College was imagined as the “educative aorta of the College,” critical to Hampshire’s interdisciplinary, experimental program. In 2014, we have the opportunity, thanks to the Portal Building project and the bookstore’s impending relocation, to re-envision a library that includes a Learning Commons designed to respond more actively, directly, and with a greater impact, to the Hampshire curriculum."
"Educative aorta" aside, Hampshire College (Amherst, MA) has set its sights on a transformation of the Johnson Library. The process started in November, 2013 and is well documented on the project's web site.
This blog serves as a directory to library websites (234 as of 4/10/14) where you can find models of the innovation that started as the information commons and has evolved into the learrning commons, knowledge commons and many variations.
Scroll down for links to planning documents, conference presentations, online articles and other blogs that might be useful.
I'll also be posting on other matters that point the way to innovations and interesting ideas on how libraries can improve the learning environment.
Suggestions, additions, corrections to email@example.com