University launches plans for Collaborative Teaching Laboratory

The University has launched ambitious new plans for a £40 million state-of-the-art Collaborative Teaching Laboratory (CTL) to facilitate the teaching of science, technology, engineering and maths (STEM) subjects.  It will enable collaborative and interdisciplinary working amongst undergraduate and postgraduate taught students, providing a transformational teaching experience to enable them to develop the skills and experience required by employers.

The CTL will benefit from high-specification equipment and modern technologies, supporting informal inquiry and independent learning, serving the needs of a diverse community.

The Laboratory will be built in two phases:

  • Phase one, which is due for completion in September 2016, will involve a partial refurbishment of the Mechanical and Civil Engineering Building to create a Heavy Engineering Lab with flexible learning spaces that can be used for laboratory and classroom work.
  • Phase two is due to open in the 2017/18 academic year and will see a purpose-built space on campus located between the Biosciences Building and the Learning Centre.  The building will feature Dry, Wet and E-labs for use by different student groups at the same time, and a public engagement space allowing the University to showcase science and STEM subjects to a wider audience.  This flexible space will provide opportunities for outreach, student recruitment, continuing professional development (CPD) and business engagement activities, and will strengthen new and existing links with key stakeholders, including industry partners, alumni and the University of Birmingham School.


Artist’s impression of the Heavy Engineering Lab

Professor Jon Binner, Deputy Head of the College of Engineering and Physical Sciences, says: 

These exciting new facilities will be critical for the future by helping Birmingham develop talented graduates who can make a real difference to industry and other employers. We’re making good progress on the physical design of the labs and, just as importantly, the creative thinking needed to introduce this new approach to student learning.

For more information on the CTL please email


Artist’s impression of the CTL