Science Hall West Open for Students and Faculty

Building design fosters collaboration and offers students and faculty an interactive learning environment
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The new 67,000-square-foot addition to the University’s Science Building is providing students and faculty with contemporary classrooms and research facilities designed to encourage an interactive learning environment.

“Our faculty scientists worked closely with the architects to design a building and environment that maximizes the ability of faculty to teach students in sophisticated labs and small classes,” says Sandra DeYoung, dean of the College of Science and Health. “We now have a facility that matches the expertise of our faculty.”

The addition, known as Science Hall West, places the University at the forefront of science education in New Jersey. It contains eighteen state-of-the-art modular research laboratories designed to support undergraduate studies and research and twelve teaching labs for upper-level courses. Research and laboratory spaces are configured to allow for collaboration between faculty and students.

“The students are going to benefit greatly from this new modern facility,” says Lance Risley, professor of biology, who has served as project shepherd for the past four years. “Several of the research labs are designed to allow students to work with faculty members as part of a research group, which is a highly desirable educational experience.”

The building also contains two, seventy-five-seat lecture halls, one with traditional theater seating, and the other in a nontraditional horseshoe shape. “The horseshoe shape of the lecture hall places the instructor in the middle of the students, who face each other, making the space very interactive,” says Risley. “This space is indicative of the collaborative experience we are encouraging between faculty and our upper-level students, in which faculty and students are part of a learning community.”

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08/24/10