How do you know if you have enough education environments? The answer influences budgeting, staffing, master planning and fundraising efforts for higher education institutions. Bailey Edward has discovered some quick rules of thumb to guide our education design efforts.
• A general classroom, whether lecture style, active learning, or seminar room, is considered to be fully utilized if it is scheduled for 30 hours. It is not uncommon for community colleges to see much higher rates of usage, up to 40 hours, since their day is typically 20% longer than a four-year curriculum’s day.
• A laboratory classroom full utilization factor is 11 hours. This is much lower because of the preparation and clean-up time that needs to be taken into consideration.
• A maximum undergraduate teaching load for instructors is 12 hours per week for a maximum of six separate courses and no research activities; nine hours if counseling and research is part of their responsibility (American Association of University Professors, AAUP).
• A maximum graduate teaching load is nine hours; six is preferred if counseling and research is part of their responsibility (AAUP).
Bailey Edward uses these factors when analyzing raw data to develop baseline performance measures and design parameters. Used alongside course attendance numbers, user workshops and face-to-face interviews, a true picture of a facility’s ‘right size’, the number, size and type of classrooms, and the number of faculty in relation to curriculum, sets a defensible course for growth.