Learning Environments Research

, Volume 13, Issue 2, pp 127–145 | Cite as

Architectural design and the learning environment: A framework for school design research

  • Neil Gislason
Original Paper


This article develops a theoretical framework for studying how instructional space, teaching and learning are related in practice. It is argued that a school’s physical design can contribute to the quality of the learning environment, but several non-architectural factors also determine how well a given facility serves as a setting for teaching and learning. Supporting evidence for this argument is drawn from research on school climate and organisation, as well as from the author’s study of three open-plan high schools. Facilities design, educational practice, school culture, and student learning are found to be interrelated aspects of a school’s total learning environment.


Architectural design Educational facilities Learning environments School climate Small schools 


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media B.V. 2010

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.TorontoCanada

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