A New Level of Learning and Teaching
By Lauren Brown | photo by John T. Consoli | video by University Marketing & Communications
Take a spin in the newest building at Maryland to discover the classrooms of the future.
The Edward St. John Learning and Teaching Center, named for the Baltimore developer, philanthropist and 1961 alumnus who donated $10 million toward its construction, opened in May with the ambitious goal of transforming teaching and learning on campus.
"It’s exciting that the vision for a space that will transform the classroom experience and shape the way faculty teach has
come to fruition.”
–Edward St. John ’61, D.P.S. ’12 (HON.), Founder and Chairman of St. John Properties
The 187,000-square-foot space features labs, informal study spaces, group study rooms, and tech-enhanced TERP Classrooms (short for Teach, Engage, Respond and Participate) with flexibility such as tiered seating, tables, mobile desks and swiveling chairs that encourage active learning and collaboration.
The center, the first new academic building constructed on McKeldin Mall in more than 50 years, incorporates Holzapfel Hall. It also houses the Teaching and Learning Transformation Center, the Academy for Innovation and Entrepreneurship and the Division of Information Technology’s Academic Technology and Innovation team.
BY THE NUMBERS
187,000 gross square feet
12 classrooms and 9 teaching labs, with a total of 1,500 seats
7 huddle rooms (formal meeting spaces for students)
12,000 students served per day
2 second-floor roof gardens, including one for use in courses on plant sciences
1 academy Loft to support innovation and entrepreneurship
Faculty and students who will use the building or who have taught or learned in prototype TERP Classrooms say…
“The science of learning is what the ESJ Center is all about. The inspiring architectural design bridges form and function to help students learn in ways that research has shown to work best.”
–Professor Ben Bederson, Associate Provost of Learning Initiatives and Executive Director of the Teaching and Learning Transformation Center
“Before I had access to a TERP Classroom, I cut up whiteboard from Home Depot so students could each get a section of it, work in groups and upload their drawings. But a TERP classroom, with individual whiteboards around the room, was just fantastic. It’s a much more natural environment for learning.”
–Astronomy Professor Derek Richardson
“The Loft is our dedicated classroom-studio-incubator for all types of innovation classes. Its combination of ideation rooms, team project workspace and low-resolution prototyping tools will foster rapid learning by doing and new levels of creativity and innovation.”
–Dean Chang, Associate Vice President for Innovation and Entrepreneurship
“When I was taking the class in a traditional classroom, six students participated, and that was it. In the TERP Classroom (when I returned as a peer mentor), students have a lot more confidence, and that translated to them being more involved.”
–Corinne Kuntz ’19, Academic Peer Mentor for Psychology 101
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