The Adams Center, located in the Brown Library atrium, has plans to create a learning research lab to enhance learning across ACU’s campus.
The Adams Center was born in 1992 and serves as a resource to faculty who want opportunities to enhance the way they teach and relate to students through a variety of different learning experiences and daily lunches.
“We have three areas in the Adams Center where we serve,” said Dr. Lesa Breeding, Adams Center executive director, “Faculty development, Instructional Design and Educational technology.”
The Adams Center is where faculty come when they want to integrate technology and other teaching tools into their classroom. The center provides a variety of training and tools to faculty for the purposes of enhancing the teaching and learning experience.
Currently, they are working to create a space where research can be conducted in order to learn more about the effectiveness of specific teaching styles, including mobile integration. The lab is expected to be in use by Fall 2013.
There will be a room in the Adams Center built like a classroom and equipped with cameras and microphones. Experiments will be conducted with consenting students to give the Adams Center staff a better chance to review the effects of specific teaching methods. All research will be processed through the internal review board, making it a safe place for human subjects to volunteer.
“We exist to learn,” said Dr. Jennifer Shewmaker, associate professor of psychology. “We exist to challenge preconceived notions and say, ‘how does that really work?’ And so this gives us a place where we can do that when we think about human learning.”
There will also be a smaller room across the hall that will be suitable for one student at a time. Here, researchers can observe the way a student interacts with an iPad or other mobile learning device.
This is an exciting time for the university as the Adams Center explores what technology and new teaching methods can produce in the classroom.
Shewmaker said, “I think that it is super exciting to have a place where teachers can come and say, ‘I’m thinking about doing this but I want to see how it works and is it going to be a benefit to my students?'”