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Essential Reading
Bligh, B. & Pearshouse, I. (2011) Doing Learning Space Evaluation. In A. Boddington & J. Boys  (eds) Re-shaping Learning: A Critical Reader: The Future of Learning Spaces in Post compulsory Education Rotterdam: Sense Publishers/ pp. 3-18.
Ellis, R. A. & Goodyear, P. (2016) Models of learning space: integrating research on space, place and learning in higher education Review of Education Volume 4, Issue 2, pp. 149–191.
Ossa-Richardson, A. (2014), ‘The Idea of a University and its Concrete Form’. In P. Temple (ed.), The Physical University: Contours of space and place in higher education. Abingdon: Routledge.
Further Reading
Association of University Directors of Estates (AUDE) (2015) Higher Education Estates Statistics report http://www.aude.ac.uk/resources/news/view?g=7f6f8a92-3d5d-4afc-aca3-e860b68ee928
CABE. (2005), Design with distinction: the value of good building design in higher education  London: Commission for Architecture and the Built Environment.
Coulson, J., Roberts, P. and Taylor, I. (2015), University Trends: Contemporary Campus Design. Abingdon: Routledge.
Clark, H. (2002), Building education: the role of the physical environment in enhancing teaching and research. London: Institute of Education, University of London.
De Botton, A. (2007), The Architecture of Happiness. London: Penguin Books.
Dittoe, W. (2006), ‘Seriously cool places: the future of learning-centered built environments’. In D. Oblinger (ed.), Learning spaces. Washington, DC: Educause.
Edwards, B. (2000), University architecture. London: Spon Press.
Edwards, R. and Usher, R. (2003), ‘Putting space back on the map of learning’. In R. Edwards and R. Usher (eds), Space, curriculum and learning. Greenwich, CT: Information Age Publishing.
Gabrielsen, M. and Saugstad, T. (2007), ‘From identity to facility – the new buildings for the Faculty of Humanities at the University of Copenhagen’. Scandinavian Journal of Educational Research, 51, 531-546.
HEFCE. (2005), Sustainable development in higher education (05/28). Bristol: Higher Education Funding Council for England.
Jamieson, P. (2003), ‘Designing more effective on-campus teaching and learning spaces: a role for academic developers’. International Journal for Academic Development, 8, 119-133.
Jamieson, P., Fisher, K., Gilding, T., Taylor, P. and Trevitt, A. (2000), ‘Place and space in the design of new learning environments’. Higher Education Research and Development, 19, 221-236.
JISC. (2006), Designing spaces for effective learning: a guide to 21st century learning space design. Bristol: JISC Development Group.
Jones, S. , Sutcliffe, M. J. , Bragg, J. & Harris, D. (2016) To what extent is capital expenditure in UK higher education meeting the pedagogical needs of staff and students? Journal of Higher Education Policy and Management, Vol.38 (4), p.477-489.
Kuh, G., Kinzie, J., Schuh, J. and Whitt, E. (2005), Student success in college: creating conditions that matter. San Francisco, CA: Jossey-Bass.
Kuntz, A., Petrovic, J. and Ginocchio, L. (2012), ‘A Changing Sense of Place: a case study of academic culture and the built environment’. Higher Education Policy, 25, 433-451.
Matthews, G. & Walton, G.  (2014) Strategic development of university library space New Library World, Vol.115 (5/6), pp.249-237
Mitchell, W. (2007), Imagining MIT: designing a campus for the twenty-first century. Cambridge, MA: MIT Press.
Neary, M. et al (2010), Learning landscapes in higher education. Lincoln: Centre for Educational Research and Development, University of Lincoln.
Norgard, R. and Bengtsen, S. (2016), ‘Academic citizenship beyond the campus: a call for the placeful university’. Higher Education Research and Development, 35 (1), 4-16.
Savin-Baden, M. (2011) ‘Research Spaces’, in Re-Shaping Learning: A Critical Reader. ed. by Boddington, A., & Boys, J. (Rotterdam: Sense Publishers), 93-104.
Scott-Webber, L. (2004), In sync: environmental behavior research and the design of learning spaces. Ann Arbor, MI: The Society for College and University Planning.
SMP. (2006a), UK higher education space management project: Impact on space of future changes in higher education (2006/10). Bristol: Higher Education Funding Council for England
SMP. (2006b), UK higher education space management project: promoting space efficiency in building design (2006/09). Bristol: Higher Education Funding Council for England.
Strange, C. and Banning, J. (2001), Educating by design: creating campus learning environments that work. San Francisco, CA: Jossey-Bass.
Temple, P. (ed.) (2014), The Physical University: Contours of space and place in higher education. Abingdon: Routledge.
Temple, P. and Barnett, R. (2007), ‘Higher education space: future directions’. Planning for Higher Education, 36, 5-15.
Temple, Callender,   Grove, L, Kersh, N. (2014 ) Managing the Student Experience in a shifting Higher Education Landscape (York: HEA )
Trow, M. (2010/1968), ‘The Campus as a Context for Learning’. In M. Burrage (ed.), Martin Trow: Twentieth-Century Higher Education: Elite to Mass to Universal. Baltimore, MD: The Johns Hopkins University Press.
Useful websites
The Learning Landscapes project, University of Lincoln final report
The Space Management Group’s website
The Jisc web pages on learning spaces
Some reflections on recent assignments:
This section does three things, briefly. First, it sets the context for standards, by trying to gloss ‘mastery’ – the evidence of success at Master’s level. Then it comments on MBA assignments in general, drawing on experience from the programme. Finally, it offers some guidance on the short (3,000 word) form of the assignment.
Our working definition of ‘mastery’ is:
confidence in handling source material – expert opinion, empirical research evidence, experience, exemplifications etc. – to analyse evidence, develop an argument and arrive at conclusions (which may be action-focused). The confidence is based on competences and capabilities and allows the author’s voice to have an authority of its own, both personal and professional, derived from the sources, but not wholly dependent upon them.
That leads to some of the features of weaker assignments:

–  too much time is spent ‘setting a scene’, separate from any analysis
–  the analysis, then, risks being separated from the context, since these discursive descriptions tend not to be used to frame the argument. There is often a disjunction between the first part, where evidence of reading is paraded and cited, and the second, where issues of substance and the core of the question are tackled
–  so, readings are not used actively and in an integrated way, but ‘decoratively’. At times, these literature reviews seem to be a defence against fears of failing to have an appropriate ‘academic’ level; often they serve as diversions (deliberate or subconscious) from engaging with deeper analysis
–  preference is given to panoramic, encyclopaedic review, and not enough to analysis in depth of strategically-selected issues
–  points are made in a general way, often asserted, without referencing, or use of examples. Sometimes opinions are taken as axiomatic fact and not challenged.
In 3,000 words, you cannot give a comprehensive treatment, and there is no room for long preliminaries. So, to take a question about Quality1, the assignment does not need a long discourse on the history of QA, and any discussion of the nature of quality, and its meaning, might be best used to illustrate one of the tensions identified. Equally, general reviews of literature on organisations and their strategic management must be avoided. The question almost shouts to have a table, listing, on one side, the tensions and dilemmas, and, on the other, the matching response[s]. Or, dilemmas can be listed as bullet points, each with a brief example, or a reference to someone who has identified it. It is perfectly acceptable to select one or two as illustrative of general features and to examine them in depth, with links to the principles and strategic responses they prompt (or should provoke). So, you show wider awareness, with minimal reference to examples and experts, but also skill in the strategic selection of issues to pursue in more depth and the active engagement with selected material.
Taking a question from the Managing Knowledge Exchange and Engagement module2, again, avoid over-long introductions on definitions of strategy, or of the concept of regionalism. You might list pressures for a regional strategy. Then, identify elements of it. But the question is about steps, so it is a process focus. If you were to identify, say, outreach to SMEs, or research partnerships, as elements of a strategy, then, again, this is an acceptable tactic, in managing the assignment within the word limit, to choose one of those to analyse the stages in strategy development. Several authors have identified such sequential approaches and you could work with one, while acknowledging that there are others. You might then consider how far the sequence you have treated in depth is transferable to other elements.
What this implies is a select set of references for the short-form assignment. Some are used to show you know about the wider writing. Four or five, used actively, with, say, another dozen or so used intelligently to show awareness of the field, will suffice in this form.


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