CA Labs Science Center / Beta Testing

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The fabrication lab represents one step toward where our curriculum could go in a more adaptable environment.

This is what science looks like today

Within the first weeks of CA’s inaugural engineering course, the Science Department’s Amy Kumpel distributed shoe boxes to her class containing the following items: scissors, pliers, wire cutters, jumper leads, a three-volt motor, AA batteries, binder clips, paper clips, old CDs, a glue gun, and electrical tape. She challenged students to: 1) work in groups, and 2) build a dancing bug. The students set themselves up in the fabrication lab, a renovated space in the basement of the main building outfitted with work tables and white boards. 

The lab also serves as a beta classroom for the kind of pedagogy CA could offer, such as engineering, with more flexible teaching spaces.

It wasn’t long before office-supply insects, with CD wings and paper-clip legs, were bouncing and buzzing across the lab tables. This is what science looks like today: It’s collaborative, it requires equal parts critical and creative thinking. And it can take up a lot of table space. The fabrication lab represents one step toward where our curriculum could go in a more adaptable environment.