click blueprint to view; click notepad to navigate to subsection sustainable learning spaces link to information about the project link to information about the project design link to reconstructing the archive review link to techne review link to sustainable learning spaces review link to sources home link to descriptive transcript blueprint Like the media landscape itself, the Commons could not be a static space. Rather, the facility would need to transform 
itself and grow as both the technologies and methods of media production changed over time. Even now, we will continue to nurture and 
develop the conversations we have begun in the planning stages of this project, deepening existing relationships and seeking out new 
collaborative opportunities. These partnerships and our planning for continual change are the keys to the fiscal and academic 
sustainability of the Commons. The DMC & DLC partnership had taught us that while we can offer continuous technology training, it is not realistic to expect 
every student who is trained in the theory and practice of digital centers to also be skilled at supporting technological literacies. 
In truth, while the literacies are split between the units’ missions, the support of the literacies happens in the same physical space.  
The shared space might be the reason the separation is working, for now. With the rising interest from students and teachers alike to use mobile devices in all levels of education, and with the current lack of plans in place at many schools to 
recycle these devices, a unique opportunity is at hand. As the teachers who will interact with students and their iPads, e-Readers, or other tablets, we can look to universities like Bellarmine, 
or companies like EWSI and C & I as we consider the options that will divert these devices from the e-waste stream. Thus, the challenge for our Studio is one shared with the field: to study the multimodal composition that happens in these spaces is to better understand that composition 
and to create new opportunities to support it. The first step for the field, then, is to uncover the spaces that already exist so that they can be studied—which is what makes the 
collection of which this chapter is a part so exciting. Our students need to understand and experience how the practices of academic research and writing, the creation of quantitative information and its visual 
representation, and the practices of all academic disciplines are connected and intertwined. An open, networked Learning Commons enables students to participate in these
 “networks of practice,” while serving as a physical reminder of how these practices are connected. The interconnectedness makes the Commons more likely to succeed, 
 as each of the nodes of the network help to sustain and support the others. One of the new cultural narratives emerging from learning spaces, then, builds upon the 
 traditional writing center value of collaboration. This new narrative begins with two people working together and moves outward through an open networked space to 
 connect other individuals, technologies, disciplines, and cultures in a transformational moment of learning. Essentially, we have discovered that this space functions like a single organism with lots of symbiotic creatures feeding off it—maybe not a nice metaphor,
 but an apt one. We all benefit from being in this important space, but we also are constrained by rules and regulations particular to this space. In some ways, 
 we are not able to do things without involving all the constituencies, and if we can do things without consulting others, the attitude often exists that we should still consult them...
 Anyone directing such a space must allow a kind of trade-off—one that adds complexity to administrating a center because directors must negotiate the communal conditions in exchange for 
 being in a preferred and central space. Moving forward, Pahlow believes building ownership of the space will be a central focus (see video 6). As Pahlow noted, “really the goal has been to say … this needs to become 
part of what we do as a college. This active-learning classroom shouldn't be something that we just do every now and then; it should really be thought of every time we design a building, 
every time we design a remodel.” Pahlow hopes the approach to learning and design will become standard procedure for the college, as well as other schools in the Wisconsin Technical College System. 
Schoeller agreed: “It’s upbeat with a good vibe. There’s good mojo in here” (personal communication, 2012). As the sustainability issues of the three case studies in this chapter intimate, classrooms and the buildings that contain them should not simply be seen as neutral stages or 
befitting backdrops supporting timeless instructional performances. These spaces and the activities in which the participants are engaged shape and are shaped by individual initiatives, 
institutional imperatives, and technological forces, among other things. They are sites where money is spent or withheld. They are sites of publicity campaigns, large and small. They are 
sites where instructors and students coordinate their activities—sometimes in tradition-bound rituals that endure irksomely and other times in new ways that inspire dramatically. Most importantly, this study suggests that the flexible classroom is not a panacea for the challenges composition instructors—or any instructors for 
that matter—face when teaching. As learning space researcher Jos Boys (2011) has written, having a flexible space with mobile furnishings “does not automatically mean that 
students will feel empowered or that equipment will be moved … it depends on the conventions and assumptions—the ordinary social and spatial practices—that participants bring to a 
space, the activity and the context” (pp. 129-130). The comments from the instructors in this study demonstrate that while the space is something that can inspire our thinking about 
teaching and can make particular activities easier to facilitate, it is not the single factor that determines success. The functionality in a room must be relevant for the end user. At K-State, we provide faculty with training on the use of the technology, so that they can 
take full advantage of a room’s capabilities. We survey and observe faculty using rooms. If there is a feature that they are unaware of, we provide additional training. 
Our support is a phone call away, with a seven-minute response time. In the evenings, information technology staff conducts routine checks to evaluate general room 
appearance and cleanliness, replace batteries as appropriate, and monitor bulb life of projectors, using a global room viewer. Because the 100+ rooms are in such high demand, 
time is scheduled during the semester to take a room offline for maintenance and upgrades. Spare equipment and projector bulbs are on hand for replacement purposes. 
These efforts underscore our commitment to sustain the existing inventory of technology rooms while looking to the future.