Post Occupancy Survey in collaboration with the Melbourne Graduate School of Education at the University of Melbourne (Australia) and the Edith Cowan University in Perth (Australia)
The research project will investigate the change in behaviour (motivation/well-being) of students with respect to their participation in educational activities, and the change in educational practices as a result of changes in the layout of learning environments. The research is mainly characterised as Scientific Research to evaluate the effectiveness of the change in the organisational model of newly built or renovated learning environments. International literature defines it as Post Occupancy Evaluation, ‘‘The examination of the effectiveness for human users of occupied designed environments”
To investigate the use of areas laid out according to INDIRE’s proposals in the 1+4 Manifesto of innovative spaces after their occupation, also analysing the repercussions in terms of student well-being. As part of this objective, an agreement (Memorandum of Understanding) was signed between the Universities of Melbourne and Perth with the aim of sharing expertise in the field of evaluating the school spaces occupied after any renovations and/or reorganisations through the use of furniture, and by rethinking the physical spaces inside the building. The partnership will be initiated by identifying common research themes, and then by defining the actual research project.
The specific objective is to trigger a process of change by disseminating a new culture of physical space in the school system, and by promoting design processes which involve the various stakeholders (local authorities, financing bodies, professionals) in the creation of school buildings studied to promote a better use of the learning experience by their users.
The research has both a national and international scope since it is a project which has already been implemented in some Australian schools in Melbourne and Perth. This will involve constant international dialogue that is not limited to out two partner universities. The objective is to verify and evaluate the impact of furnishings arranged with a flexible layout in an Italian context. The research will run over at least 3 school terms (2022-2023) with the collaboration of the Universities of Melbourne and Perth, and can be further extended for any additional information that might be required during the project.
The research questions arise from the redefinition of learning environments in the light of INDIRE’s Manifesto on educational spaces:
Q1: What level of motivation and perception of student well-being is due to the reconfiguration of learning environments through the use of flexible school furniture?
Q2: What effect does reconfiguring the learning environment (through furnishings) have on a teacher’s teaching practices?
- Head teachers, teachers and students;
- local government, third sector, households.
- Representatives from regional school governance bodies (UST [Ufficio Scolastico Territoriale – Territorial School Office]/USR [Ufficio Scolastico Regionale – Regional School Department]);
- Networks of schools or regional conferences that can make use of studies and practices.