Labs

There are many options to consider when deciding on designs for laboratories. Traditional labs built from the 1950s and 1960s don't do a good job of accommodating the new, hands-on, open-ended work being done by undergraduates today. Modern teaching labs should incorporate appropriate numbers and styles of student workstations, shared benches, and storage spaces in an organizational model that corresponds to the preferred teaching style. Design choices in a teaching lab can either impede or enable effective teaching, so considerations of noise and sight lines must also be made with the desired method of teaching in mind. In labs more dedicated to research than teaching, equipment purchases and classroom arrangement can be adjusted to better accommodate the research purposes of a particular discipline. It must be noted that the spaces surrounding a lab can be as important to teaching and research as the labs themselves. With this in mind, planners should take care that adjacencies are well-designed and integrated into the overall educational goals of construction or remodeling.