Improving Student Learning

The Taylor Institute is dedicated to better understanding and improving student learning. It supports research into how students learn best, helps instructors build their teaching and learning expertise, and brings together people across campus to form a community for teaching and learning. Through the College of Discovery, Creativity and Innovation, the Taylor Institute will provide undergraduate students with opportunities for research and experiential learning.


View a slideshow of photos of the Taylor Institute building.

A Beacon for Teaching

The most striking feature is the building’s translucent glass spine, which glows like a beacon at night. The spine consists of a pair of 220-foot-long steel trusses that project out over the east and west doors: 35 feet over the west entrance, and 55 feet over the east entrance. Inside, the spine forms an atrium with a suspended amphitheatre and a series of hanging pods.

An Extraordinary Gift

The Taylor Institute building was made possible by a $40 million donation from the Taylor Family Foundation. Don and Ruth Taylor share a passion for inspiring students and supporting the development of teachers. That passion inspired them to make their generous gift, which is the only one in the history of the University of Calgary to fund entire building.

Learning Spaces

The learning spaces in the Taylor Institute allow instructors to reimagine what a classroom can look like and how student learning can happen. The spaces are fully flexible: tables, chairs, screens, whiteboards and instructors’ stations are mobile and can be arranged in any configuration. The transparent design of the learning spaces allows others to observe teaching in action and brings teaching into the open.

Timelapse and Flythrough

Watch a timelapse of the building’s construction, and see a flythrough of the building atrium.

A Forum for Teaching

The forum on the main floor has retractable seating that allows it to convert from a flat floor classroom to a 340-seat public lecture space.

A Green Building

The Taylor Institute incorporates a number of features that reduce its environmental impact. High-performance windows, LED lighting controlled by daylight sensors, radiant heating and cooling, and a well-insulated, light-coloured roof combine to reduce the building’s energy use by 71%. The building’s landscaping includes native grasses and shrubs and an efficient irrigation system, to reduce water use for irrigation by 70%.