Beyond the beanbag? Towards new ways of thinking about learning spaces

Jos Boys

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This article looks critically at some of the assumptions in our current ideas about learning spaces, especially the arguments in favour of a shift from formal to informal learning spaces. It suggests that the formal/informal divide hides more than it reveals about the complex relationships between learning and the spaces in which it takes place; and that learning spaces in post-compulsory education remains an under-theorised and under-researched area. Instead we need to develop better conceptual frameworks and richer research methodologies so as to enable a more informed, constructive and creative debate. The article ends by exploring the implications of unpicking the ‘granularity’ of different scales and types of learning space, so as to outline some alternative concepts for analysing what already happens and for enabling creative improvements to the socio-spatial encounters, relationships and processes of teaching and learning in post-compulsory education.
Original languageEnglish
Publication statusPublished - Sept 2009


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