Oct 11, 2018

New Study: Teachers Say Space Matters

 by Jim McGarry, President/CEO, Education Market Association

Representing and connecting key stakeholders at the intersection of technology, space, curriculum and pedagogy and its collective impact on teaching and learning are more than a mission for the Education Market Association. EDspaces leads the discussion within the industry about how the design, functionality, utilization, and furnishing of educational spaces create an environment conducive to modern learning and dynamic needs of students and educators.

The National Center of Educational Statistics reported approximately 50.7 million students enrolled in public pre k–12 schools and another 5.2 million enrolled in private schools in 2017. An additional 20.4 million students attended colleges and universities, for a grand total of 76.3 million students in elementary, secondary and higher education in the United States. This means 24% of the total U.S. population utilizes an education facility daily as students, and even more if you count the millions of educators, administrators and support staff. In the 2017-2018 school year an estimated $624 billion will be spent related to their education.

It is against this backdrop that EDmarket approached industry research firm, MDR, to conduct a study on the impact of space on student outcomes with the premise that space matters. The report, State of the K-12 Market: The Impact of Space on Student Success, is based on the input of thousands of teachers, with analysis and case studies by architects and facility planners involved in the transformation of learning environments across the country. To compile the data, MDR conducted an online survey with a nationwide sample of educators working in K-12 public schools. Teachers and librarian/media specialists were sent an email invitation to take the survey and approximately 1,685 completed it.

What we have learned is that creative spaces featuring flexibility, a unique atmosphere, and inspiring aesthetics leads to more engagement and plays an important role in student success. The classroom sets the foundation for innovative learning and must keep pace with technology and students’ varied learning styles to support their overall well-being and lead to greater engagement and academic achievement. The data and comments from our research study participants indicate a highly positive and statistically significant impact of active learning and intentionally-designed classrooms on learning.

Some Key Findings:
  • 94% of educators in this study believe space has a high or moderate impact on learning success, so clearly space makes a difference.
  • 74% say they need spaces that will accommodate new technologies.
  • 65% believe their school needs construction or renovation in the next 5 years.
  • 63% of teachers want to add flexible furniture to their classrooms.
These and other interesting results are further broken down by school size, poverty level and market size. The complete study will be released soon and available to EDmarket members for a 20% discount. Click here to order your study now!

Jim McGarry and Melissa Pelletier from MDR will present the findings of the study at their session The Impact of Space on Student Outcomes, on Thursday, November 8 at 11:30 am during EDspaces 2018 in Tampa, FL.

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