Laurea UAS, Lohja campus, in Finland, has a learning environment, Yrityslabra, for business management and administration students who want to complete their studies by doing real-life business assignments. This chapter depicts the elements of a physical learning environment that have contributed to improving learning results on Laurea Lohja campus. The campus was challenged with addressing long studying and graduation times, loss of students to other campuses, difficulties in employment after graduation and lack of cooperation between Laurea and organizations. To solve these problems, Laurea Lohja created a learning environment called Yrityslabra (Business Lab). As a result of the continuing development work and material gathered (interviews, memos from teacher development meetings, student evaluation discussions, and written evaluations), five distinctive elements for a learning environment were found. These elements are: informal physical environment, informal social environment, teacher’s role as a mentor, personal learning process, and project management process. As the result of the new learning environment, students on Laurea Lohja campus, for example, have shorter graduation times, and there are less drop-outs in the middle of the studies. Students also find work in their own field of interest and do so right after graduation. Also, there is increased interest for the graduating students to further their studies at the master’s level.
Kortelainen, M.J., Kyttä, J. and Laakkonen, T. (2014), "Five Elements Leading to Better Learning Environments: Case Yrityslabra", Inquiry-Based Learning for the Arts, Humanities, and Social Sciences: A Conceptual and Practical Resource for Educators (Innovations in Higher Education Teaching and Learning, Vol. 2), Emerald Group Publishing Limited, Bingley, pp. 219-241. https://doi.org/10.1108/S2055-364120140000002020
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