Offering a multimedia-focused classroom space, versatile support structure, and customized online tools, McGraw’s learning laboratory presents a unique opportunity to explore and experiment with digital pedagogy. DLL is staffed by McGraw’s Educational Technology group and founded on the idea that good technologies for teaching and learning are rooted in the same principles as sound pedagogy – encouraging creativity, exploration, discovery, and collaboration.

Multimedia Laboratory

Open seven days a week, Digital Learning Lab is a flexible classroom space optimized for teaching and learning with technology. To encourage social interaction and group discussion, class participants can share their screens wirelessly, with immersive stereo sound, via 150” laser projection or a portable 70” LCD screen. Large movable whiteboards bring presentations where you want them.  For group work, individual projects and class sessions, DLL offers an audio room, digitization room, fast Mac Pro computers, 27” Apple displays, a customized palette of multimedia software, and networked storage (DLL Drive).

“There are so many opportunities to incorporate technology in the classroom to enhance how faculty teach and how students learn. It is not about employing technologies simply as bells and whistles. It requires thinking hard about what we want students to learn and how technology can help achieve that.”

Rebecca Graves-Bayazitoglu
Former Director of the McGraw Center for Teaching and Learning

Support Structure

Working with the Digital Learning Lab means gaining a pedagogical partner for your course. In our collaborations with faculty, we offer a range of resources to help scaffold instructional goals. In addition to providing a unique (and soon to be renovated) technology-enhanced classroom space, we specialize in creating customized websites, blogs, tools, and training sessions for Princeton courses.

Instructors are welcome to meet with us early in the semester to design a strategy to support their vision for the course. Web-based solutions, such as blogs, foster community and collaboration and are easily tailored to a specific pedagogical approach. For hands-on exploration and training, the DLL can be reserved for one or more class sessions. Faculty are welcome to teach in the DLL, or they may partner with DLL staff to build an interactive session with a specialist. Recent seminars (see below) include video production and editing, audio recording/podcasting, digital narrative, digital mapping and timelines, and web development.

Following the instructional session(s), students can utilize the DLL space and its resources to complete their digital assignments. Outside of class sessions, the DLL is a student-centric space where campus communities are encouraged to engage in dialogues around digital tools and creative processes. In addition to a student-led DLL multimedia workshop series each semester, students reserve the DLL for competitions, club gatherings, k-12 outreach, study sessions, and workshops. The DLL also maintains a staff of 15-20 students, each with tutoring experience and expertise in various multimedia workflows, who are available for questions or consultations outside of normal business hours.

Digital Tools & Platforms

In addition to the resources contained within our physical space (130 Lewis Library), Digital Learning Lab also works with faculty to integrate existing tools or, when necessary, develop new tools to address teaching goals.  Our aim is to promote and develop approaches that are pedagogically effective, and also intuitive, sustainable, work well within the campus technology infrastructure, and are well-suited to the Princeton University community.

The DLL maintains a wide range of platforms for teaching and leaning, such as blogs, wikis, and media curation tools, on the McGraw Commons platform. With blogs and other collaborative digital environments, we can help you build a community that extends beyond the walls of the classroom. Recent projects include course blogs for traveling journalism classes, video annotation tools for collaborative analysis of films, and course sites for shared reading responses.

Depending on the pedagogical needs of the instructor, we partner with faculty to prototype, develop, and implement custom applications for teaching and learning. For those faculty members who may be interested in developing custom teaching tools, the 250th Anniversary Fund for Innovation in Undergraduate Education may be a helpful resource.  The Digital Learning Lab often collaborates with recipients of this fund to plan and develop the technology aspects of their proposals, but an award is not required to collaborate with the Digital Learning Lab or with the McGraw Center.

A new McGraw DLL, optimized for teaching with technology.

LEARN MORE

Collaboration

Five triangular table clusters organize the room for active pedagogy, group projects, and peer-to-peer instruction, while improving traffic flow and accessibility in the space. Adding two wall-length whiteboards and movable whiteboard walls fosters epic brainstorming sessions.

Wireless Screen Sharing

With one wall dedicated to a 10-foot-tall by 30-foot-wide 4K screen, there is ample room to show multiple screens at the same time. An internal network makes it possible for students and faculty to wirelessly share their smartphone, laptop, or desktop screen with the video wall.

Immersive Sound

At the DLL, students record and edit multitrack recordings that dramatically combine narration, sound effects and music. With five HD speakers and Princeton’s cutting-edge audio-processing software, the DLL is a laboratory for immersive audio editing.