Occidental College’s installation hosts student presentations like a bulletin board.
Santa Monica-based architecture firm Belzberg Architects Group was tasked with renovating one of Occidental College’s buildings, and the finished project features a two-story “digital Post-it wall” to host students’ presentations and projects. The redesign focused on how students think, learn and interact with technology on such a vast scale.
The multimedia wall is situated in the inner atrium of the century-old Johnson Hall, which was also completely redesigned last year to ensure it became a cutting edge center for global affairs.
According to Interior Design, Belzberg founder Hagy Belzberg “found that the old passive learning paradigm—classrooms, lecture halls—was obsolete or at least heading that way.”
The wall’s features include programmable LED lights installed in bright pops of color, and the t10 embedded displays on which students can view imagery, videos and presentations created by their peers. The students are also able to download a project they’re particularly interested in directly to their laptop or tablet through a specially designed app.
By imposing thoughtful and deliberate constraints on how work can be displayed, the wall encourages students to think creatively and consider new ways to present their ideas visually. The wall is put together daily by students from the college’s media lab using software from interactive storytelling company Second Story.
The surrounding areas of the Johnson Hall have also had a makeover, with wider hallways and large windows where students can look into classes while they’re being conducted to encourage a more social learning environment.
This renovation project is a perfect example of how the education system is adapting to the technological advances in the world. There’s no shying away from the power of technology and what it can bring to the learning experience, especially for the next generation of makers and doers.