17 SES 11, 1916-2016 - “Education and Democracy” for a Democratic Learning Space (Part 2)
Symposium continued from 17 SES 10
The title of the paper is inspired by ‘The Democratic Conception in Education’ chapter in John Dewey “Democracy an Education”, and aims at expressing the architectural concerns in the design of democratic educational spaces. The concept of Democracy related to educational purposes raises distinctive interpretations and can be analyzed in different perspectives. Dewey underlines the importance of a full and free interaction between individuals with different interests, and their experience exchange benefits, while breaking down class, race or gender barriers. In a democratic society, the success of the educational process depends on the opportunities given to all members of a group, as well as their capacity to participate and to assimilate other interests. The paper focuses on the contribution of architecture as a driver for the democratization (or not) of educational spaces. Thus addressing the following research questions: How was Dewey’s concept of democracy interpreted in terms of school building and educational space design by European architects during the 20th century? In what other ways did educational spaces raise different meanings of democracy during the 20th and 21st century? What is their current significance? Based on Portuguese case studies interpretations, and comparing with European ones, the paper intends to discuss the architectural premises and strategies behind the design of democratic (or non-democratic) educational spaces. Scoping issues such as (1) social and cultural aspects that deal with the inclusion of different groups (gender, race, mixed cultures) in the same space and thus enabling these groups to live together and share experiences, while promoting outer group communication, community integration and equal opportunities for all (Gehl, 1971; Hertzberger, 2008; Kenney, Dummont, & Kenney, 2005), (2) Religious concerns, (3) Political decisions and the consequent (non) democratic political positions and guidelines, (4) Economical demands, associated to the democratization of education, access to all and the consequent need for mass production of school buildings, as well as the economical constrains regarding cost per student. (5) Urban morphology issues and the design of the premises, considering greater or lesser openness to the urban surroundings (Campos Calvo-Sotelo, 2014; Cannas da Silva, 2011). Also, the role of educational spaces in urban structures and their effect on the urban significance, memory and living. (6) Technical and material solutions, (7) Aesthetical options, (8) Accessibility conditions or (9) Communication, Internet and the physical consequences of the virtual environments on educational spaces (Oblinger, 2003; Ocde, 2015).
Campos Calvo-Sotelo, P. (2014). Innovative Educational Spaces: Architecture,Art and Nature for University Excellence. Aula - Revista de pedagogía de la Universidad de SalamancaRevista de Pedagogía de la Universidad de Salamanca, 20, 159–174. Cannas da Silva, M. L. (2011). Atlas Universitário da Área Metropolitana de Lisboa. Universidade Técnica de Lisboa. Gehl, J. (1971). Life between buildings. Using Public Space (4. Ed). Skive: Arkitetens Forlag, The Danish Architectural Press. Hertzberger, H. (2008). Space and Learning. Lessons in Architecture 3. Rotterdam: 010 Publishers. Kenney, D. R., Dummont, R., & Kenney, G. (2005). Mission and place. Strengthening learning and community trough campus design. Westport: Praeger Publishers. Oblinger, D. G. (2003). Boomers & Gen-Xers Millenials. Understanding new students. Educase Review, (July/August), 36–47. Ocde. (2015). Students, Computers and Learning: Making the Connection. Pisa: OECD Publishing. http://doi.org/http://dx.doi.org/10.1787/9789264239555-en
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