The Innovation Fund supports projects across the Library by awarding grants in November and February of each year. Here is a round-up of the projects we have funded in the last 12 months.
Sound, Body, Mind
Arguably the most high-profile project to have been funded (this has been a huge hit on social media, and garnered press attention from the Manchester Evening News) is the Zzz Zone which is now up and running in the Learning Commons. The pod is only with us for a nine month trial period and we’re hoping it will be a success with students.
However, the sleep pod was funded as part of a bigger project to use new technologies across the Library. Not to be overshadowed by the attention the pod has been getting, we have also purchased two ‘Sound Ears’- systems to alert students when noise levels in the Library become unacceptably high.
Learning from every angle
Another addition to the Learning Commons are in the seminar room – portable lecterns and Google Chromecast. These will help sessions held in the seminar room become more interactive, allowing students to instantly share their work or interesting items from the web to add to the discussion.
In the last round of funding IF supported new additions to DigiLab – kits that guide students through the process of making their own electronic devices, such as games consoles and speakers and Arduino starter kits to help develop basic programming skills. Schools are introducing children to these skills earlier and earlier so it is important that we can give our students the skills they need to be successful in the modern workforce.