The Learning Ground at PSU Library

The first floor computer lab in Portland State University Library has undergone a significant renovation over the past several months. The Learning Ground, the new name for this updated space, occupies the north corner of the Library building and traditionally has been the most popular computer lab on campus. The Library and Office of Information Technologies jointly proposed renovating this space to the Associated Students of PSU, who were looking for projects to fund from student fees.

The Learning Ground at Portland State Library

With funding from ASPSU, OIT, and the Library, the new lab space opened during the fall term. The lab area features additional desktop PCs and Macs as well as several quick-print workstations and a dedicated counter area for laptop users.

In January, we opened the Sandbox, an expansion into the area formerly occupied by the New Books browsing area and adjacent to the computer lab. The Sandbox is an experimental, collaborative space with a range of technologies aimed at fostering student collaboration, including wall-embedded LCD displays, touch-screen computers, floor-to-ceiling writeable wall surfaces and whiteboards, and a variety of seating and workspaces.

The Sandbox at Portland State University Library
A view into the Sandbox through the windows from the Library lobby.
Flexibile Furniture in the Sandbox
All the furniture is easily moved. This table can be adjusted to seating or standing height.
study room
This room was vacated by the Campus Public Safety Office and is now part of the Sandbox. Students can keep the space open or close the sliding barn doors.
A view to the outside from inside the Sandbox
The view from inside the Sandbox out to the Park Blocks at PSU.

The Sandbox is designed to evolve; the technology and space will change with students’ use and needs, and we are glad to have this new space to meet the needs of Portland State University students.


  1. Looks like a great space! I would be curious to have an update in future on how students have responded to it.

  2. Thanks, Robin! We’re interested to see, too. The new lab is, not surprisingly, just as popular as the old one. The Sandbox just opened, and it’s been interesting to see students’ reactions so far.

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