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A new time demands new schools


How can the physical environments in schools enable or disable teaching and learning? This is the focus of a new research project to be conducted in the next year by Anneli Frelin and Jan Grannäs, researchers in educational sciences at the University of Gävle.

Modern skolbyggnad

“We would like to build on experiences, for instance, concerning on how school facilities are used today. A school building isn’t necessarily good or bad in itself; it depends on what kind of teaching that is going to be carried out there and with what resources,” Annel Frelin says.

Big investments to be made

Jan Grannäs and Anneli Frelin would also like to explore the fields of architecture, curriculum studies and education for research results on school buildings and the importance of the physical environment for learning.

“We are facing big investments in existing and future school buildings, so we need to identify in what areas there is a need for new research on how to develop sustainable schools for the future, also economically and socially,” Jan Grannäs says.

The project “Bygga skola” is carried out by Ifous – innovation, research and development in schools and pre-schools - and managed by Suzanne de Lava, Arkitekturanalys. In the autumn, so called “Walking tours” with a variety of representatives from the school system will be carried out, and a report will be presented during the spring of 2019.



Ifous is an independent research institute with a focus on innovation, research and development in Swedish schools and pre-schools, and its members are primarily, school organisers (a municipality or the operator of an independent school). Four school organisers in the areas of Stockholm and Gothenburg with a special interest in deepening knowledge on the connection between the physical school environments and the conditions for learnings have financed the project.


Jan Grannäs and Anneli Frelin have during a long period of time conducted research projects on the educational environment of schools. They are participants in STORIES at the University of Gävle and DRAPES (Design, Research and Practice in Educational Spaces), a European research group with a focus on educational spaces.



For more information, please contact:
Jan Grannäs, reader in curriculum studies at the University of Gävle
Phone: 026-64 84 97, 070-518 15 15
Email: jan.grannas@hig.se

Anneli Frelin, professor in curriculum studies at the University of Gävle
phone: 026-64 81 43, 072-011 74 94
Email: anneli.frelin@hig.se

Text: Douglas Öhrbom
Photo: Anneli Frelin

Published by: Douglas Öhrbom Page responsible: Anders Munck Updated: 2018-10-31
Högskolan i Gävle
Box 801 76 GÄVLE
026-64 85 00 (växel)