College campus student housing trends

Universities want to increase enrollment, retain the brightest students, raise money through fundraising, attract the best faculty, and inspire learning.

Architect and design firms like ozarch can help set a college campus apart from other campuses by utilizing innovative design solutions.

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Not all college students want to live on campus in dorms and would prefer to live off campus but near the university at a reasonable price.

Designers and developers are looking to fulfill this demand by various methods. One such method is to renovate older vacant buildings and build micro-housing units. This type of housing is an efficient solution for areas where land is scarce.

The modular building model uses renewable and energy efficient processes where a building is created off-site. Reduced waste, lower build times, and lower overall costs are a result of using modular designs.

Modular construction is increasingly being used to create quick and convenient dormitories and classrooms for colleges and universities.

No more cinder block walls

Student housing of yesterday was made of cinder block walls and dull dorms with bunk beds. This is no longer the trend as dorm life and college living have been upgraded due to expectations and rising costs of education.

The trend is towards creating high-tech dorms designed to provide a better college campus experience.

Increased privacy

Most incoming freshman students are used to their privacy and have never shared a bedroom with anyone.

While the shared room is likely to remain, colleges and universities are keeping privacy concerns in mind when deciding how many students will share a room. A common layout is a suite where several rooms share a common area and a bathroom.

Fully managed network

Most students not only use but rely on multiple internet-connected devices. They use smartphones, laptops, tablets, and video streaming devices.

The emphasis used to be on bandwidth or capacity. The trend is towards the need to have enough wireless density to be able to support the number of connected devices.

Wi-Fi services available in student housing needs to provide enough access points to ensure service that is always available at a fast speed for multiple devices for a single student.

To keep up with the technological trends, it is important for universities and colleges to have an overall Wi-Fi system that ensures students are able to connect their devices, stay connected, and have a positive user experience.

Different living preferences

There is a trend towards designing student housing to appeal to many different living style desires. Many universities are offering a variety of units within the same building giving students choices.

This trend of offering a variety of housing designs to students allows universities to offer options that align their identity with the social, academic, and living experience to appeal to everyone.

Common spaces

Students look for value in where they live. Universities and colleges are responding by providing more social and academic spaces because they realize that learning goes way beyond the classroom.

An example is including a common dining area in a residence hall where students can gather to socialize, study, and interact with other students where they live.

Increase retention and academic performance

Universities want to recruit quality students so it is in their best interest to make sure their needs are met in an effort to retain them. Research shows that one of the main reasons students leave a college is because of lack of engagement.

To counter this concern, the trend has been and will continue to be towards designing spaces that include meeting and music rooms, as well as tech and fitness spaces.

Universities are keeping up with these trends by focusing design elements around collaboration, group study, dining, and wellness into housing units.

The goal is to encourage students to be engaged with each other and allow them to collaborate in spaces designed specifically for meeting, connecting, and interacting with their peers.

Fostering a sense of community

Gone are the days that students looked at where they live on college campuses as only a place to sleep. They want to live in a manner that reflects their styles of learning and living.

Design and architect experts are looking to keep up with the trends of student desires and expectations. More and more students are spending more time in housing facilities. It is in the best interest of colleges and universities to provide spaces for students to relax, study, eat, socialize, and connect with their peers.

Trends are towards providing more common areas like meeting rooms, game rooms, and lounges where students can meet and interact.