Information Technology Services

Drop Shadow

Minutes of the ILSD Committee Meeting

Nov. 20, 2008, 12:00-1:30 pm

Present were Andrew Milne (CEO of Tidebreak, Inc.), Andy Allen, Jerry Ammer, Ali Castro, Nail Cho, Carole Huston, Cel Johnson, David Light, Sue Lowery, Karen Macauley, Shahra Meshkaty, Jack Pope, Conley Robinson, Arthur Rush, Jeff Simmons, James Straub, Fernando Ubaldo, Chris Wessells, Mary Whelan, Greg Zackowski, and Mary Kowit.

Andy Allen welcomed the group and read the charge of the ILSD Committee from the website. He informed the committee that the ILSD reports are going to contribute to USD’s WASC document. The committee will also be providing feedback to the Campus Master Planning group, and will advise USD’s provost and CIO on learning space design. The focus of today’s meeting is to be the actual design of innovative and effective learning spaces that work for the Net Generation.

It was suggested that future meetings of the ILSD Committee be held on February 12 and May 12, 2009, with the possibility that another meeting be scheduled between those two.

Shahra distributed copies of a draft of the Campus Master Planning document relating to academic planning. Andy requested that members of the committee read it and provide feedback before December 3, the date of the Academic Affairs Committee meeting, by which time we would like to have some suggestions to bring to that committee.

Chris Wessells said we want to look at what we want students to learn, who our students are and what skills do they bring to USD, and what promotes student learning. What skills do we want our students to come away with? He referred often to the table shown in his presentation.

Shahra said that in a stimulating learning environment, students want to remain there. They’re able to share content and work on peer-to-peer projects; the setup should be interactive. Chris commented that this requires ubiquitous broadband wireless access. Shahra commented that the technology should be effective and transparent for both students and faculty.

USD has two types of classrooms. Serra 155 is an example of our most advanced classroom. “Scale up classrooms” have movable round tables, whiteboards all around, with the teacher in the middle of the room. Chris showed photos of innovative classroom and other learning spaces from other institutions. Students and faculty coming to USD have certain technology expectations and USD must remain competitive.

Shahra then introduced Andrew Milne, CEO of Tidebreak, Inc. Andrew spoke about collaborative software’s contributions to the student experience. The learning space should have comfort and flexibility utilizing such devices as rearrangeable tables and chairs, dual projection screens, and expanded whiteboard space. He showed examples from Stanford University and Loyola’s Information Commons areas, which has 35 group rooms, a help desk, and no books, though it adjoins the library.

Tidebreak can actually help measure how a learning space is being used. The software can generate a log file which provides a data log which can be used for feedback.

Shahra then spoke about the redesign of the Serra 155 lab. The room had been underutilized and ITS wanted to set up an experimental room that could also be used for interdisciplinary learning. The redesign experience involved extensive meetings. Conley told the group about the advantages of a raised floor under which all power and data cables can be laid. The plan is now to install a raised floor during the Copley Library remodel as well.

Mary Whelan mentioned that the higher you raise the floor, the longer the access ramps must be, cutting down appreciably on maximum occupancy of a learning space.

In Serra 155, round tables and Herman Miller chairs, both with and without arms, were selected. Computers were mounted on swiveling brackets on the tabletops. The redesign was truly the partnership of the whole team: Facilities, University Design, the ITS team, and all the vendors involved. The room still has its original number (26) of workstations.

The meeting adjourned at 1:30. Following the meeting was a 1:30 to 2:30 presentation to the provost, deans, and several faculty members. From 2:30 to 4:30 faculty members were invited to tour the S155 classroom, where the iTeam was present to show them how to operate all the new technology in the room.

Minutes provided by Mary Kowit.