Design framework and principles for learning environment co-design: Synthesis from literature and three empirical studies

Tiina Mäkelä*, Teemu Leinonen

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleScientificpeer-review

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Abstract

The need for environments conducive to learning and wellbeing has been broadly recog-nised. Considering particularly learner perceptions in the learning environment design is known to improve both their learning and wellbeing. There are no, however, shared theoretical frameworks guiding the learning environment co-design from the learner perspective. As a response to this challenge, a learning environment design (LED) framework was developed based on the literature and co-design involving learners aged 7 to 19 (n = 342) in Finland (n = 266) and Spain (n = 76). The LED framework entails 53 characteristics grouped under seven constructs. It draws attention to the importance of balancing communality with individuality, comfort with health, and novelty with conventionality. Flexibility and functionality are recognised as central enablers for a quality learning environment. The study suggests a design framework and principles for learning environment co-design. They can serve as a research-based introduction to the topic after which priorities can be defined based on the concrete design target and goals, and concrete design solutions can be created in the participatory design involving learners and other key stakeholders.

Original languageEnglish
Article number581
Pages (from-to)1-22
Number of pages22
JournalBuildings
Volume11
Issue number12
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 25 Nov 2021
MoE publication typeA1 Journal article-refereed

Keywords

  • Co-design
  • Design framework
  • Design principles
  • Educational design research
  • Learning and wellbe-ing
  • Learning environments
  • Participatory design

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