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Smart, Stylish New Classrooms

Studies show a direct correlation between a classroom’s physical environmentNew smart classroom and a student’s ability to learn. This fall, UAlbany students are learning in dozens of newly renovated classrooms equipped with the latest technology and new furnishings designed to enhance their academic experience. It's all part of the University’s multiyear effort to improve instructional spaces across campus.

In addition to three redecorated lecture centers, the Humanities building on the uptown campus has refurbished hallways and three new “smart” classrooms with wired podiums, projectors, screens, and computer access. In addition to the three new smart classrooms, other high tech upgrades in the Humanities are slated to take place this year.

In preparation for the renovations, students, faculty and staff were consulted about the new room designs. For example, students remarked on theNew Desk need for larger chairs and a place to stow bags. The new rooms contain the largest tablet armchair on the market today, with baskets underneath for storage. Colorful and acoustically friendly tile for the floors and sisal for the walls mean eye-pleasing, yet quieter conditions. Lighting is both brighter and conserves energy, with black out shades instead of vertical blinds for best viewing of video or slide projection. Some of the rooms provide flexible seminar-type seating and new tamper proof thermostats.

In addition to the new furnishings, the University has been particularly careful to salvage and recycle as much of the old as possible. “Nothing useful has gone to waste,” says Stacy Stern, who coordinates the rehab project group. “We’re proud of the work that has gone into this project and look forward to valuable feedback as faculty and students begin to utilize these beautiful new spaces.”

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