Texas A&M System Regents approve $85 million classroom project

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COLLEGE STATION, Tex. (KBTX) -

The Texas A&M University System Board of Regents during its meeting today approved a plan for the Texas A&M University flagship campus in College Station to begin construction on the 21st Century Classroom Building.

The $85 million innovative academic learning facility will support Texas A&M’s mission to elevate teaching and learning, community enrichment, build a culture of excellence and meet the teaching and learning demands of a growing campus community.

“Building a modern classroom facility advances our goal of increasing student success through transformational learning,” Texas A&M University Michael K. Young said. “This facility in both layout and technology will be built to optimize how students today learn and will meet the needs of our innovative faculty.”

The 120,672 square foot state-of-the-art facility will offer more than 2,200 classroom seats across 10 classrooms ranging from 72 to 630 seats, and includes active learning classrooms, teaching arenas, tiered classrooms, and a traditional large lecture hall.

Classrooms are designed to address the learning needs of today’s students, engaging best practices in active learning concepts around visibility for students to peers, the instructor, and the media as well as proximity for eye contact and facial expression and flexibility of the space to foster team learning.

In addition, the facility will have more than 600 seats in collaboration study spaces for students inside and outside the building and a small cafe. With enrollment growth, students continue to seek additional spaces on campus that foster collaboration and team learning apart from the classroom itself.

This facility will add much needed informal, yet important, learning spaces similar to those in the MSC and our university libraries to meet this demand.

The facility will be constructed on Texas A&M’s main campus in College Station at the corner of Wellborn Road and Old Main Drive next to the Cain Parking Garage and located near the Memorial Student Center.

The Center for Teaching Excellence, Instructional Technology Services and Instructional Media Services will be relocated to this facility and provide support to the faculty directly within the building. These offices provide direct support for faculty in the classroom.

“We expect this new classroom building will complement the MSC and serve as an academic hub, particularly for our first and second year students, in an active learning environment designed to enhance the engagement of students with their peers and with the instructor,” Joseph Pettibon, vice president for enrollment and academic services said. “Through classroom design, technology, and collaboration spaces, the facility will allow greater innovation and transformational learning opportunities in large classes.”

Construction on the project is scheduled to being in May 2018, with substantial completion scheduled for May 2020 and full utilization for the Fall 2020 semester.