The UBIKO project of the Oulu University Teacher Training School is among the top six contestants for the international Best Research and Practice Project Award. Its final placement will be decided at the EAPRIL2013 Conference in Switzerland at the end of November.
UBIKO is closely related to research on the development of learning environments conducted in the RYM Indoor Environment Program. The project created a demo space, a sort of school cell, that supports understanding, skilful and inspiring learning. Last year, University Properties of Finland Ltd. (UPF) implemented major structural changes in the spaces. The Kirppa cell space between the classrooms was converted into a functional part of the learning environment. The modifiability and acoustics of the spaces were also improved and all furniture was replaced.
– New, more flexible spaces allow decentralized, collaborative and individual learning and team teaching. Spaces can be flexibly modified for different learning situations. The pleasantness of the space and increased cooperation inspire both teachers and students, says Heikki Kontturi, Project Manager of UBIKO.
In the spaces designed by Lumiset Architects LTD, movable tables may be arranged into different configurations or into a safe and quiet reading nook.
The discoveries of the demo at Oulu Teacher Training School are being analyzed, and UPF will help disseminate the results of the research e.g. to Kokkola, Jyväskylä, Hämeenlinna and Tampere.