The University of Michigan has launched Study Spaces at U-M, a web-based space reservation system to help students find and reserve designated individual study spaces, computer stations, a space to take a remote class, or just a dedicated quiet spot between classes.
The system currently has more than 1,400 individual spaces that can be reserved on North and Central campuses. All individual study spaces are socially distanced and have disinfecting materials available to align with public health safety requirements.
Reserved spaces are available in facilities managed by the College of Engineering, LSA, School for Environment and Sustainability, Gerald R. Ford School of Public Policy, School of Information, Palmer Commons, Rackham Graduate School, University Unions, University Libraries, and U-M Museum of Art.
Students may explore available spaces and reserve them directly from the Study Spaces at U-M website, and some are already using the program to better plan their time on campus.
“I do not have any mandatory in-person classes, but I come to campus around once a week to print class materials and run other errands,” LSA senior Tianyu Jiang said. “When fall term first began, I wasn’t sure where I could study outside of class that would be safe during COVID.
“Now with Study Spaces, I am able to reserve a few different spaces and have quiet study time. Study Spaces are especially helpful when I have remote interviews or need to take exams.”
Students can reserve traditional study spaces and computer stations through the Study Spaces at U-M tool, as well as spaces that are unique and not usually used as study space.
UMMA created an inviting study space in the iconic Lizzie and Jonathan Tisch Apse. The Michigan Union and Palmer Commons similarly are making meeting rooms and event facilities available for individual study through the site. LSA is making available some small classrooms not being used this term for classes.
We knew that public health and safety requirements would limit spaces available for studying and that students may need or want to reserve these spaces for use in advance,” said Amy Dittmar, senior vice provost for academic and budgetary affairs.
“Launching the new site was a creative way to address the needs we’ve been hearing from campus, and having a quiet and peaceful place to study is important to our students’ academic success and well-being.”
A cross-unit team — led by the Provost’s Office, Information and Technology Services, the College of Engineering and the University Library — considered options for addressing this need and found that a tool already in use by the library could be expanded for broader campus use quickly.
“This project was a great opportunity for many units to work together to quickly and proactively address this anticipated need of our students, and we were more than happy to be a partner in this effort,” said Ravi Pendse, vice president for information technology and chief information officer.
“While this tool was launched in response to the pandemic, we look forward to seeing it grow as a student-centric service to provide even more value to schools, colleges, and the campus community,” Pendse added.
Units that are interested in learning more about Study Spaces at U-M or in joining the system may contact 4HELP@umich.edu. When making spaces available in the tool, units have the flexibility to define the reservation rules, available hours, and other information regarding each seat or space.