Examine current research

When considering the design of space it is important to build from a research foundation to ensure decisions are made from the learning and teaching perspective. You might also conduct your own research on the impact of space on learning through action learning or action research.

Key questions

  • What current research supports the key design considerations for effective learning space?
  • What research can you use to inform development of your desired learning or pedagogies?
  • What research, if any, have you conducted in your context that can inform the development of your space?

Tips for examining current research

  • Research focus areas that address your desired learning.
  • Locate information from different sources.
  • Gather data from users of flexible learning space.
  • Encourage all users to be involved in collating research to build a collective vision.
  • Visit Centre for Education Statistics and Evaluation (CESE), Evaluation resource hub.
  • See the future-focused research page for current research links.

For registered professional learning to guide you through the learning space design process, attend Flexible Learning Space by Design.


Innovative learning spaces have been found to have benefits beyond academics. In the study of three open-plan schools arranged in cross-grade 'neighbourhoods' with varied and differentiated learning spaces, a range of improvements were found. These included improvements in wellbeing, peer support from different-aged peers, opportunities for leadership, increased autonomy and new relationships between students and teachers. The mixed structure allowed for personalisation of learning (Cox & Edwards, 2014).

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