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Open for business

Open for business

On Monday, 5,000 AUT students will walk through the doors of a new state-of-the-art Business school.

The building will house around 6,000 students in 37 classrooms, two case rooms and seven seminar rooms over 10,000m2 of purpose-built space.

Each teaching floor has wireless online access and classrooms are equipped with data shows, document cameras, DVD and VCR players, surround sound, guest laptop capabilities and individual laptops for the students. The fully integrated system is operated from a touch pad control panel fitted to the lecturer desk.

AUT's use of cutting edge technology supports the universities commitment to innovative and dynamic learning, says Professor Des Graydon, Dean of the Business Faculty.

“We’ve sharpened up our act to meet the demand of today’s students. We’re providing to undergraduates what top international schools provide for their postgraduates,” he says

Meeting room-style round tables in every classroom will shift focus away from the lecturer onto other students, says Professor Graydon. This will open the gateway to debate and challenge to deliver AUT’s student-centred learning teaching philosophy.

“On the first day of their degree students will sit facing each other not in lecture theatre rows with 400 other people. It mirrors the real world of business which is about integration and relationships.”

“We aim to get top learning from our students,” says Professor Graydon. “Our graduates will demonstrate this.”

Associate Dean of the Business Faculty Jenny Bygrave says students are being taught to interrogate information and challenge the status quo.

“They have to be active; they have to get under the surface. In short, they have to think. Our classrooms have been designed to deliver this learning and teaching philosophy,” she says.

Architects Jasmax have created a building which celebrates AUT's integration and connection with the city, says Euan Mac Kellar, Jasmax director.

“The building form is articulated as a woven basket prised apart to reveal the community using the space within. The concept of layering and weaving is expressed in a strong yet simple form,” he says.

“Whilst the weaving offers a sense of enclosure from the outside, it celebrates openness and connection from the inside.”

LCD screen notice boards in the teaching floor foyers will deliver real-time information to students. The eight screens worth $70,000 have been donated by Cyclone Computers and are integral in linking the faculty’s student and academic community.

Additional building features include a computer lab, informal seating areas, extra study space, student kitchen facilities, drinking fountains and a licensed café which seats 100 people.

New Zealand arts patron James Wallace will provide art from his private 4000-piece collection for use throughout the building. Pieces will be chosen by Desna Jury, Head of Art and Design. The carpet in classrooms and seminar rooms has been designed by an AUT student.

Go on a virtual tour. Click on the ‘Watch now!’ image (at the bottom of the page):

View the image gallery slideshow:


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