UCI Medical Education

UCI Medical Education
Irvine, CA
Project Team:

In response to the need for patient-centered care by interprofessional healthcare teams, health-science education has been moving rapidly towards a team-based learning environment. As a result, curriculum has shifted away from basic science, taught in didactic mode, towards hands-on experiential learning models to promote lifelong learning, open inquiry, teamwork, and critical thinking. This shift required a new way of thinking about the ecosystem of spaces that make up the student experience. Gensler and Tangram were brought on by the UCI Medical School to help reimagine three floors of their existing building to support this new way of learning.

The basement includes the transformation of an existing tiered lecture hall into state-of-the-art anatomy labs and support spaces. Labs have been designed to continue group learning at the cadaver tables with audio/visual support as well as virtual anatomy stations–combining lecture and hands-on activities for effective learning outcomes. The hallway was designed to create an elevated sense of arrival with a branding wall, informal seating arrangements and visual connections to the lab. Back-of-house spaces include restrooms, showers, changing rooms with lockers, cold room storage and a cadaver preparation area.

Level 3 incorporates a large format flat-floor active learning center designed to accommodate over 144 students in groups of 8. Each table cluster is equipped with integrated power and data, and instructors are able to switch between didactic and interactive modes to support the new curriculum. Additional small seminar/break-out rooms are arranged around the central classroom to facilitate ongoing group learning. The hallways have also been activated with branding and informal seating arrangements and a coffee bar, supporting ongoing conversations between classes. The use of glazing between the rooms and circulation spaces brings in daylight and views throughout.

With views along the perimeter and abundant natural daylight, Level 4 consists of a new collaborative faculty office space that balances focused work areas with informal seating arrangements. A new student lounge with adjacent lockers and lounge creates an informal space to foster community outside of the classrooms. A variety of seating arrangements access a shared kitchen, a focused study room as well as additional small group study rooms and a maker space so students can choose the environments that best support their social and learning needs.

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