Academic Innovation Center (AIC)
Bryant’s Academic Innovation Center, the groundbreaking resource for experiential learning that opened in fall of 2016, expands upon the successes gleaned from the Ideation Lab and Bello 102. Within its 48,000 square feet are breakout spaces that inspire design thinking and creative problem solving; tiered classrooms that encourage debate and build critical thinking and communication skills; flat classrooms that support flexible teaching styles and encourage collaboration; and the Innovation Forum, a space where furnishings and whiteboards can be reconfigured to support various group learning activities. Kip Ellis, lead designer of the Center, describes some of the key design drivers for the building.
The building has 10 classrooms, five of which are “tiered” rooms inspired by the case study method of teaching, and the other five are “flat”, with furniture that is fully reconfigurable to accommodate different pedagogies and classroom dynamics. Twenty-four study and breakout rooms are available for student work, and the large Innovation Forum provides a space for presentations, conferences, workshops and other academic activities. All of the spaces within the AIC have wireless networking, and many rooms have digital displays that can be connected to wirelessly.