7. Does the campus have formal classroom standards?

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1 B. Classroom Standards Overview This section explores the use of campus-wide standards regarding classroom technologies. The existence of effective standards for teaching technologies in classrooms can be an effective indicator of an institution s commitment to using those technologies to support the enhancement of teaching and learning. The first two questions in this section therefore explore the use of classroom standards on the nineteen campuses in this survey. The next question looks at whether campuses assign functional levels to classroom technology that can be used to match classrooms with faculty needs. Finally, each campus was asked how they obtain and use faculty input regarding standards or guidelines used to design classrooms. 7. Does the campus have formal classroom standards? a. The campus has a complete and detailed set of written standards for the renovation and construction of classrooms. b. The campus has a set of written guidelines that are widely accepted for the renovation and construction of classrooms. c. The campus has informal guidelines for designing classrooms, prepared by a specific classroom support department. d. The campus has no classroom standards. Responses From Survey Institutions This question generated a wide range of response. Four institutions indicated that they had detailed written standards for classrooms (level a ), while five additional campuses had written guidelines for classrooms that were widely accepted (level b ) as de facto standards. However, two others indicated that they had no standards at all (level d ). Among the remaining eight campuses, it was most common for the institutions to have only informal guidelines for classroom construction and renovation that were prepared by a particular campus department (level c ). These guidelines were only sporadically honored as standards for the renovation and construction of classrooms. The University of Washington has fifty pages of written guidelines that are part of the campus Facilities Design Manual. A specific senior manager within the Classroom Support Unit supervises the implementation of these guidelines on all campus construction and renovation projects involving classrooms.

2 The University of California, Santa Cruz has a comprehensive manual that is used by the Classroom Subcommittee to guide all classroom construction and renovation. This manual has been published and is used by many other institutions. San Francisco State University is working with its seventh generation of written classroom standards. The instructional technology group works closely with campus physical plant staff in implementing those standards. The University of Nevada, Reno has written standards that have been approved by both the Facilities Management and Planning Committee and the President. A representative of the classroom support group sits on the Facilities Committee and also serves as a staff liaison on all classroom renovation and construction projects. Those campuses with formal classroom standards were the most likely to have effectively integrated technology for teaching into their classrooms. These institutions were also far more likely to experience good cooperation between classroom support and physical plant units. Although there is certainly no linear causal relationship involved, there is a tendency for those institutions without written standards to be less likely to integrate teaching technology into classrooms. 8. Does the campus have mandatory classroom construction standards? a. The campus standards for classrooms are mandatory and are rigorously followed. b. The campus has widely accepted or mandatory standards for classrooms and these standards are usually followed. c. The campus has guidelines for classrooms and these guidelines are followed when and if academic input is considered and budgets allow. d. The campus does not have mandatory standards for classrooms. Responses From Survey Institutions Since many campuses have no formal standards for classrooms, it is not surprising that only five of the nineteen campuses have what they consider to be mandatory standards for the construction or renovation of classrooms (levels a or b ). Even among these five top-ranked campuses, three noted that circumstances (usually budget shortfalls) cause the standards to sometimes be ignored. Seven campuses use general guidelines for classrooms that are applied somewhat erratically (level c ). The remaining eleven campuses do not have mandatory standards at all for classrooms.

3 The University of California, Santa Cruz campus has a comprehensive set of mandatory standards for classroom construction and renovation. These standards are revisited annually. There is also a funding formula that creates new funding for the classroom support organization based on both the number of new classrooms and student FTE. On the University of Washington campus, a ten year plan for the renovation and construction of classrooms with teaching technology was prepared by the Classroom Support staff and approved by both the senior administration and the Faculty Senate. The University of Nevada, Reno applied a mandatory set of standards for the inclusion of teaching technology and networking to the construction of sixteen classrooms and a conference center in a new campus building. All funding for this technology was required to be part of the building construction budget. Given the overall weak relationship between classroom support organizations and physical plant units (see question #4), it is hardly surprising that few institutions have mandatory classroom standards. Physical plant units still, by and large, control whether or not any standards that exist are actually applied. Even those institutions that possess such standards state that ultimate success in applying those standards takes constant hard work to gain lasting acceptance of those standards by physical plant units. 9. Are differing levels assigned to classroom technology? a. Distinct levels describing the teaching technologies available have been assigned to all classrooms. These levels are understood by faculty and are used by the campus office responsible for scheduling classrooms to match classroom capabilities with faculty needs. b. Levels describing teaching technology have been assigned to classrooms, but the levels may not be distinct. The levels are sometimes used to match classroom capabilities with faculty needs, but there are no clear and consistent procedures for doing so. c. A list is kept of classrooms that have special teaching technologies, but this list is not used consistently to match classroom capabilities with faculty needs. d. No levels are assigned to classrooms. Responses From Survey Institutions Only one campus did not assign labels to classrooms indicating levels of teaching technology available (level d ). However, nine other institutions keep only a general listing of classrooms that contain teaching technology (level c ). Thus, ten of nineteen institutions do not clearly classify rooms by the level of

4 technology they contain. Three institutions do both assign distinct labels to classrooms and match those labels with faculty needs (level a ), while the remaining six have labels, but lack clear and consistent procedures for using those labels in assigning faculty to classrooms (level b ). The University of Nevada, Reno assigns a level of I through V to all campus classrooms. These levels indicate distinct types of teaching technology that are available in each classroom. The Registrar s Office includes these labels in its database of classrooms and also utilizes the labels on the scheduling form that goes to all faculty for requesting classrooms. The Registrar makes every attempt to assign classrooms to faculty based on their need for a particular level of technology. The classroom standards developed by the University of Washington assign specific levels to each classroom. The written standards provide considerable detail about the physical facilities and technologies that are included in each level. It was not common to find levels of teaching technology clearly assigned to classrooms. On many campuses that lacked distinct labels (rating c or d ), the installation of teaching technology in classrooms was lacking. Therefore, there was little need to provide distinctions among levels. Comment was frequently heard, however, that faculty on many campuses are frustrated at the difficulty in getting assigned to classrooms with teaching technologies that meet their needs. Experience at the University of Nevada, Reno indicates that the assignment of clear levels to all classrooms can greatly assist faculty in identifying and scheduling proper classrooms. This practice ensures that the significant campus investments made in classroom renovation and construction do not go to waste. 10. How is faculty input obtained regarding classrooms? a. Faculty input regarding classrooms is regularly and consistently gathered using a variety of formal and informal means. There are clear procedures applied to ensure that faculty input is included in the design and renovation of classrooms. b. Faculty input regarding use of classrooms is gathered through a variety of both formal and informal means. There are procedures for applying this input to the design and renovation of classrooms, but these procedures are informal. c. Faculty input is gathered mainly through informal means, such as conversations with classroom support staff. There is no concerted effort to apply such input to classroom design and renovation. d. Little or no effort is made to gather faculty input regarding use of classrooms.

5 Responses From Survey Institutions: Eleven of the survey institutions make a serious effort to obtain input from faculty regarding the need for teaching technologies. In addition, these institutions strive to apply this input in practice, by formally or informally relating the faculty input to the design of new and renovated classrooms (levels a and b ). A very diverse set of activities is used to gather such input including formal surveys, study committees, web sites, training sessions, and even inclusion of faculty on building committees. Another six institutions regularly gather input from faculty through informal means that usually involve contact with classroom support staff (level c ). Only two campuses said that they did not make any effort to gather faculty input on classroom issues. The University of California, Santa Cruz uses its Classroom Subcommittee to coordinate input from the campus. A renovation project called Improvement to the Arts had four faculty members on the review committee. Some faculty are actually invited to percent review meetings, wherein practical decisions are made regarding the construction or renovation of classrooms. The University of California, San Diego receives input from faculty through comment cards distributed on campus, the department web site, polls of media equipment users, personal meetings with faculty, and comments received during training sessions. Classroom support staff are assigned to work with a particular section of the campus and are required to periodically contact all faculty from that area. The SC campus conducted a technology fair, where possible new classroom equipment and classroom furnishings were demonstrated to faculty. The University of Nevada, Reno assigns classroom support and instructional technology personnel to meet in the classroom with all faculty using smart classrooms during the first or second class of each semester. It is clear that classroom support units realize that faculty members are their primary clientele. At more than one-half the institutions surveyed, a formal and concerted effort is made to both gather input from faculty and to apply that input to classroom projects. Those campuses that have had the good fortune to receive significant funding for classroom renovation or construction have especially appreciated the importance and value of faculty input. In addition, many such campuses have come to realize that many faculty will express displeasure if they are not consulted on projects that affect so large a part of their daily working lives. By and large, those remaining institutions that only make an informal effort to gather input from faculty have not experienced large construction and renovation projects involving classrooms.

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