The Learning Innovation Building, predominately funded by a $13 million grant from the Australian Government, was opened by the Minister for Innovation, Industry, Science and Research and Minister for Higher Education, Senator Kim Carr.
The building is a four-storey high educational facility providing accommodation for three University of Queensland departments. The spaces provided include experimental seminar/teaching spaces, office/administration spaces, meeting/boardrooms, media editing suites and staff support facilities. A studio or atelier space termed the ‘Innovation Laboratory’ forms the focus for various department specific activities. A three-storey high void space will link the horizontal floor plates vertically, improve the internal environment and contribute to the efficiency of the building.
UQ President and Vice-Chancellor Professor Peter Høj said the new building was catering for new and emerging developments in technology-enhanced learning.
“Within this building are facilities and experimental spaces that encourage collaborations that will advance student outcomes—outcomes that will ultimately benefit national productivity by fostering knowledgeable and skilled employees,” Professor Høj said.
The Learning Innovation Building houses centres and institutes including the Teaching Educational Development Institute (TEDI), the Centre for Innovation in Professional Learning (CIPL), the Centre for Educational Innovation and Technology (CEIT) and the Office of Undergraduate Education.
The Learning Innovation Building is the nerve centre for Massive Open Online Courses (MOOCs).
“UQ is part of a prestigious MOOCs consortium, edX, founded by Harvard University and Massachusetts Institute of Technology and joined by high-calibre institutions around the world.”
The UQ professor said the Learning Innovation Building was designed by accomplished University of Queensland architecture alumnus, Richard Kirk, and was in keeping with the university’s goal of sustainability.
The building includes photovoltaic panels providing approximately 25 per cent of the building’s peak demand, high-efficiency lighting and automated blinds and louvre windows adjusting to sunlight, wind, temperature and humidity.
“It is a fitting home for technology-assisted learning that has the potential to invigorate collaborative problem-solving among people from diverse disciplines and industries.”
About the University of QueenslandRanked among the top 100 universities in the world* the University of Queensland is one of Australia’s most highly ranked and awarded learning and research institutions. With a student population of more than 46,800 students, one in every four students is an international student. This multicultural student population will allow you to gain exposure to a range of cultures and networks.
Studies in four key disciplines at the University of Queensland rank in the international top 10 in the latest QS World University Subject Rankings.
Psychology, education, agriculture and forestry, and environmental sciences were UQ's highest-rated areas and among the highest in the world.
Additionally, QS reports in its 2013 assessment that UQ has nine further subject areas in the world’s top 30, including English language and literature, computer science and information systems, chemical engineering, civil and structural engineering, biological sciences, sociology, pharmacy and pharmacology, accounting and finance, and communication and media studies.
In the world’s top 50, UQ subject areas include linguistics, modern languages, medicine, geography, materials science, mathematics, economics and econometrics, law, politics and international studies, and statistics and operational research.
*QS World University Rankings 2012