Ryan Michael Wanzala, Biztech Reporter
Digital literacy is at the forefront of a brand-new workshop space opened by Humber Libraries this month.
The workshop called Idea Lab included a suite of multimedia resources designed to support students and faculty who intend to create digital media. Studio spaces, workshops, and online resources are some of the many components incorporated in the new initiative.
The spaces are available to Humber and the University of Guelph-Humber students and faculty. Priority will be given to students with assignments, such as producing videos, podcasts, and printing 3D objects.
The Idea Lab’s opening was an exciting time for founder Ewan Gibson, who hopes the new space will help students to take their work “to the next level.”
“If a marketing student wants to film an elevator pitch or an ECE student is interested in learning about 3D printing, they now have a place to learn, create and experiment,” Gibson said.
“If that’s the case, then the studios and equipment here and the workshops and online resources might be helpful.”
The Idea Lab also incorporates video cameras, microphones, computer workstations, and lighting equipment. So far, more than 85 people from classes like Sports and Recreation, Business and ECE, came to the Idea Lab seeking resources for specific assignments.
“We’re aware that studio spaces and technologies such as 3D printing already exist on campus,” Gibson said. “But these tend to be specific to certain programs and are only available to a select number of students.”
A strategic plan of the Learning Resource Commons was an inspiration behind the creation of the Idea Lab. The plan intended to use the group study spaces for presentation practice.
Influenced by the emergence of media labs in libraries over the years, Gibson said Humber Libraries “could do something special with these rooms,” and saw the need for these types of learning spaces.
In addition to providing multimedia resources, the Idea Lab arranged seminars and workshops to assist students and faculty about the multiple ways of communicating through digital media, he said.
“We’re not just here for assignment support. You can attend a workshop or book out the spaces, even if you are just curious,” Gibson said.
The Idea Lab hosts a website where users can rent a room to record or print.
The digital space can be found on the third floor of the Learning Resource Commons.