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University of Iowa News Release

June 20, 2005

Carver Grant To Help UI Libraries Update Information Arcade

The University of Iowa Libraries has received a $236,000 grant from the Roy J. Carver Charitable Trust of Muscatine to help expand and renovate the main library's innovative Information Arcade electronic classroom.

Nancy Baker, UI librarian, said technology has changed significantly in the 13 years since the Information Arcade opened in 1992 and the grant ensures the facility will stay on the cutting edge.

"A grant from the Carver Trust helped the university build the Information Arcade in 1992, and we're pleased with their continuing support," said Baker. "This new commitment will help us keep pace with ongoing changes in technology."

Construction on the two-year, $1.36-million project is expected to begin in 2006. The project will expand the Arcade by adding a second electronic classroom to alleviate pressure on the existing room, as well as two others at the Hardin Library for the Health Sciences. All three rooms are booked continuously throughout the academic year. The Information Arcade classroom alone has hosted more than 1,200 courses and taught 630,000 students and faculty since it opened.

The new classroom will explore the use of wireless technology and provide a more flexible teaching environment more closely attuned to the teaching and learning styles of today's education environment. The project will also divide much of the existing space into workstations that allow for more collaborative learning and interaction between students and faculty members. The changes will allow the Arcade to provide learning resources across the curriculum, including science, the arts and humanities and the social sciences.

Michael Hogan, UI provost, said the new Information Arcade will keep the University of Iowa at the forefront of using technology to strengthen teaching and research capabilities for students and faculty.

"The Information Arcade renovations will meet and exceed the needs of the modern, dynamic learning community by nurturing the powerful model of integrated and collaborative education, allowing students, librarians and faculty to work together more effectively," said Hogan.

When it opened in 1992, the Information Arcade was the first facility of its kind and was hailed as a way of using technology to revolutionize the way faculty teach and students learn. Through the Arcade, students can access a wealth of communication networks, databases, software and multimedia technologies. The classroom also features a fully integrated audio-visual system and a network of computer workstations. Since it opened, the Arcade has been the model for dozens of similar facilities at colleges and universities across the country.

STORY SOURCE: University of Iowa News Service, 300 Plaza Centre One, Suite 371, Iowa City, Iowa 52242-2500.

MEDIA CONTACT: Tom Snee, 319-384-0010, tom-snee@uiowa.edu.