Looking Ahead: Goals for the New Year

The New Year is full of new goals and resolutions for the coming year. This is the time of year to set new goals or continue to pursue them. For this coming year, the General Purpose Classroom project is continuing to strive to provide instructors and students with classrooms and technology to improve their teaching and learning experience. While we are continuing to fulfill our long term goal of maintaining the General Purpose Classrooms on campus, we have also set new goals for ourselves.

Our major goal for this year is to start moving away from the proximity locks (keypad) and replacing them with Global locks. Currently, the only rooms left that still have proximity locks are Holden 28, 33, 38, 104, 106, 109, 111, 154, 155, and 225 as well as Agricultural Science 214. There are many benefits to making this switch, besides increasing the uniformity of the classroom access.

By switching to the Global lock system, we’ll be better able to manage access to the rooms. The Global locks allow us to remotely unlock doors. If there is an issue with an instructor’s proximity card, he or she will not have to wait for someone to come to them to unlock their room. Instructors will also have more door unlocking options. By swiping their card through the card reader or holding their proximity card up to the chip reader twice, they will be able to keep the door unlocked for the duration of their class. This ensures that their class will not be interrupted by students being locked out. Or if instructors want to keep the room locked during their class, they can just swipe or present their credentials once. This unlocks the door for a few seconds to allow their entry. Afterwards, it will unlock.

For access to these rooms, we just need instructor R#’s to add access. Instructors can contact us with their R# and we can add their access to the room they will be using. Even though regular magnetic cards can be used to gain access, we encourage instructors to get proximity cards from the ID office. Using the proximity function of the global lock keeps the card from wearing out as quickly. Using the card slide on the side of the lock can create more wear and tear on the card and force the user to replace the card sooner. Classroom Technology Services has created a video detailing how to use these global locks which can be viewed here.

More information regarding this latest project goal will be forthcoming. We’ll be keeping everyone up-to-date on the progress of this change.

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End of Semester Brings New Changes

For most, the close of the semester means the end. End of semesters usually herald graduations and good-byes. However, for our office this will be a time of new and exciting beginnings. Academic Support and Facilities Resources has recently become a part of Operations Division at Texas Tech. We will no longer be known by our previous moniker: ASFR. We are now under Space Planning and Inventory within Planning and Administration.

Along with the name change, we are also changing locations. On the afternoon of December 15th, we are relocating to the Physical Plant, 3122 Main Street on campus. We will no longer be located in Suite 5 of the Administration Building’s east basement. Our offices will be located on the first floor of the Physical Plant in 120.

Even though we are changing locations, we will still be able to offer the same services and answer the same questions about GPCs or events that you may have. To pick up temporary access cards and keys for events, you can visit JP Williams in 120. Any questions regarding events can be directed to him. There will be signs posted to guide you in the right direction. For any questions regarding General Purpose Classrooms, room access, or lock programming, you can contact us at (806) 742-3658 or email us at asfr.facilities@ttu.edu.

We are looking forward to these new and exciting changes as the Fall semester ends and the Spring semester begins!

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New Location Map

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

November Announcements!

This Fall semester has seen many changes so far in the academic school year. Two of which have occurred for our office and Classroom Technology Services. We are pleased to announce and congratulate JP Williams and Timothy Honeycutt on their new positions.

Filling the role of Events Coordinator for our office is JP Williams. He joined our office this past October. In his role as Events Coordinator, he will be in charge of event scheduling. He is the go-to person to answer questions about event requests through Ad Astra. He will also be checking out temporary access cards for events. JP is a Texas Tech Alumni, graduating with a B.S. in Exercise Sport Science in 2013 and a M.S. in Sport Management in 2015. In his off time, he likes to work in his shop, ride his motorcycle, and spend time with friends and family.

Congratulations are also in order for Classroom Technology Services. Timothy Honeycutt is now the Section Supervisor for CTS starting the first of November. Formerly, Tim occupied the position of IT Support Technician with CTS. He has done a phenomenal job providing service to instructors as well as ensuring the hardware and software in the room runs smoothly. We know  he’ll continue to make great contributions to the General Purpose Classroom Project. Congratulations to Tim for his new promotion!

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Time to Take a Bow: GPC Media Shout-Out!

Congratulations everyone! Our GPC Project made the DT and was featured in an article by Media Communications. The GPC classrooms held the spot light in an article featured on August 24th of this year. The article highlighted the ongoing goals of the GPC Project since its inception as well as the popularity of these rooms among Tech faculty. The article from Media Communications goes into further detail about the selection process of room locations, technology, as well as the interior/furniture and how they are all geared to improving the teaching and learning experience of the faculty and students.

The technology in the classrooms is a big draw for many instructors, however, it can often be intimidating. Many instructors not only appreciate the rooms’ versatile technology, but also the service that is provided when a problem arises. Instructors find Classroom Technology Service’s response to issues prompt and helpful. Several instructors commented that CTS staff demonstrated rapid responses to problems as well as professionalism whenever they are needed. They also included a short video that gives an overview of the versatility of our GPC classrooms.

Thank you all for the hard work and determination that has gone into keeping this project running. The success and popularity of these rooms with students and faculty is entirely attributed to your efforts. Your work does not go unnoticed by the people who have classes and events in GPC classrooms. Congrats to CTS for their trouble shooting work over the phone and in person!

Keep up the good work everyone!

The full DT article can be read at: http://www.dailytoreador.com/news/gpc-project-creates-better-classrooms/article_fb493f3e-4ad9-11e5-a0e5-b75fd5497e01.html

The full Media Communications article can be read at: http://today.ttu.edu/posts/2015/08/general-purpose-classroom-project-upgrades-facilities-technology

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We’re Going Global: GPC Classrooms are Getting New Locks

Academic Support and Facilities Resources (ASFR) is always looking for ways to improve the learning environment for not only students, but also the teaching staff at Texas Tech University. The new Global Locks which are being installed on GPC doors are part of this process. The purpose behind these locks allow for greater customization for the instructor as well as to increase classroom security.

Instructors using classrooms with Global Locks will be able to decide whether or not they want to leave their classrooms locked or unlocked during their lecture. 1 swipe of their proximity card will unlock the door for a short amount of time for the instructor to gain access to the room. This can enforce attendance policies if the instructor chooses this selection. 2 swipes of their proximity card will leave the door unlocked for the duration of the class period. This feature is especially useful during exams. Instead of having to keep the door propped open for students who come in late, instructors can simply leave the door unlocked. This minimizes the level of distraction to the students  in the middle of the exam. Not only are they not distracted by noise from the hallway, but they are also not distracted by late arrivals knocking on the door.

Another improved feature of the Global Locks is that they can be controlled remotely. ASFR can lock or unlock a door from their computer. This saves time and resources. Instructors will not have to wait on someone from ASFR to physically come to their room to unlock it. Since these locks can be programmed and controlled remotely, they can serve as a back-up incase of an emergency.

To access a locked door, an instructor holds up their access card to the card reader to unlock the door or they can use the card swipe on the side. When the lock turns green, the door is open. The handles on doors with Global Locks do not turn when unlocked. Instead of trying to turn the handle after unlocking the door, just give the door a push or a pull. There will be reminders posted about how to access these rooms printed above the Global Lock. If the door lock is red, this means the door is locked. If you swipe or use the proximity chip in your raider card and are unable to access the room, please contact ASFR. Our office’s contact information is also located under the door number of the room.

The GPC rooms which currently have Global Locks are Holden 127, 128, 130, 152, 255, Science 112, Human Science 273, and Math 12, 108. The GPCs in Media and Communications are in the process of transitioning from proximity locks with keypads to Global Locks. Until the Global Locks are up and running, proximity locks will still be in use. For this reason, we encourage all instructors to get proximity cards to use with the Global locks. Constant use of the card slider can wear out your card. However, proximity cards can just be held up to the lock’s sensor. This ensures that the card lasts much longer.

Classroom Technology Services has also created an excellent informative video that demonstrates the Global Lock’s usage. The video can be viewed by clicking here.

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Back-to-School with Holden Hall

Summer renovations are over!

 For the past several months three of Holden Hall’s classrooms have been under renovation, becoming two larger classrooms. Interior, technology, and furniture have all been changed to better suit the needs of faculty and students alike. Many of these changes will improve both the teaching and learning experiences of faculty and students. Great effort has gone into reshaping these rooms into an improved learning space. Months of planning, construction, repainting, carpeting, and installing new lighting and technology and furniture have finally paid off. The renovations are now ready for the new semester.

 This Fall semester, Holden 128 and 130 are now ready to house new and returning students. No matter the subject matter of the course these two rooms now have the resources to accommodate them. Faculty can utilize the updated technology in their lectures. Group work will also be much easier to accomplish with the new gliding chairs. These newly renovated rooms will help create a positive educational environment for new and returning students.

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HH 126 Before: Photo taken by Marissa Virgadamo

HH 126 Before: Photo taken by Marissa Virgadamo

HH 128 Before: Photo taken by Marissa Virgadamo

HH 128 Before: Photo taken by Marissa Virgadamo

HH 130 Before: Photo taken by Marissa Virgadamo

HH 130 Before: Photo taken by Marissa Virgadamo

HH 128 After: Photo taken by Amie Faal

HH 128 After: Photo taken by Amie Faal

HH 130 After: Photo taken by Amie Faal

HH 130 After: Photo taken by Amie Faal

Flip This Room: Holden Hall Gets a Facelift!

Holden 126, 128, and 130 are receiving a makeover to better meet the needs of faculty and students. Holden Hall classrooms such as these have housed courses from a variety of disciplines. Everything from History and Math to Music Appreciation and Political Science have been taught in Holden 126, 128, and 130. Such a wide variety of courses need access to a learning environment to suit their needs. The new improvements will not only update these rooms, but also improve the teaching and learning experience of faculty and students.

Construction began in June with tearing down the walls between each room. The new wall now divides the middle of what used to be Room 128. These three smaller rooms will become two larger rooms to seat approximately 60 students. The construction on the two rooms is projected to be completed before the Fall semester starts. After this facelift, Holden 128 and 130 are going to be given a fresh coat of paint and equipped with more updated technology and furniture.

Holden 128 and 130 are going to be part of the Platinum series consisting of a blue, grey, and black color scheme. The chalkboards and wooden lecterns will be replaced with white boards, CPUs with touch screens, and projectors. There will also be ports provided to connect laptops. Faculty will be able to run DVD and Blu Ray discs as well. The older multi-colored stationary desks with wire frame baskets under the chairs will be replaced with new rolling desks. These new desks will match unlike the older multi-colored desks. The desks will be on gliders for improved collaboration among students. The new desks will also be more ambidextrous. Finding a left-handed desk or a right-handed desk will no longer be an issue for students. Two ADA desks will also be designated for each room. As for the flooring in the new rooms, the linoleum will be replaced with carpet. New technology and furniture will further aid the learning process of Texas Tech students.

Summer renovations will flip these older rooms into a newer educational environment.

Renovations are still underway. Please subscribe or check back for updates and more information about these changes.

Photo taken by Marissa Virgadamo

 Holden 126 Before – Photo taken by Marissa Virgadamo

Holden 128 - Before Photo taken by Marissa Virgadamo

Holden 128 – Before Photo taken by Marissa Virgadamo

Holden 130 Before Photo taken by Marissa Virgadamo

Holden 130 Before Photo taken by Marissa Virgadamo

Holden 128 In progress - Photo taken by Marissa Virgadamo

Holden 128 In progress – Photo taken by Marissa Virgadamo

Holden 128 In progress - Photo taken by Marissa Virgadamo

Holden 128 In progress – Photo taken by Marissa Virgadamo

HH 130 In progress - Photo taken by Marissa Virgadamo

HH 130 In progress – Photo taken by Marissa Virgadamo

HH 130 In progress - Photo taken by Marissa Virgadamo

HH 130 In progress – Photo taken by Marissa Virgadamo