In today’s modern climate, education and learning take place in multiple and diverse spaces. Increasingly, these spaces are both physical and virtual in nature. Access to and use of information and communication technologies, and the emergence of knowledge-based economies necessitate an understanding of the plurality of spaces (such as homes, workplaces, international space and cyberspace) in which learning can take place. The spaces of policy making with respect to education are also being transformed, away from traditional centres of policy formation towards the incorporation of a wider range of actors and sites. These changes coincide with a more general interest in space and spatial theory across the social sciences, where notions of simultaneity and diversity replace more modernist conceptions of linear progress and development through time.

This volume proffers a unique perspective on the transformation of education in the 21st century, by bringing together leading researchers in education, sociology and geography to address directly questions of space in relation to education and learning. This collection of essays:

  • examines the changing and diverse spaces and concepts of education (occurring simultaneously at different scales and in different parts of the world)
  • explores where education and learning take place
  • discusses how spaces of education vary at different stages (compulsory schooling, tertiary and higher education, adult education and workplace learning)
  • inspects the ways in which the meanings attached to education and learning change in different national and regional contexts.


Changing Spaces of Education is an important and timely contribution to a growing area of concern within the social sciences and amongst practitioners and policy-makers, reflecting an urgent need to understand the ways in which both education and learning are being reconfigured, not just nationally, but also internationally and transnationally. It is essential reading for final-year undergraduates, postgraduates and researchers in geography, sociology, education and policy studies, with an aim, too, of informing policy and practice in this area.

chapter |17 pages

Changing spaces of education

An introduction
ByRachel Brooks, Alison Fuller, Johanna Waters

part |59 pages

International/transnational spaces of education

chapter |18 pages

Transnational spaces, international students

Emergent perspectives on educational mobilities
ByJohanna Waters, Rachel Brooks

chapter |20 pages

Constructing transnational higher education spaces

International branch campus developments in the United Arab Emirates
ByKate Geddie

chapter |19 pages

Third culture kids

The global nomads of transnational spaces of learning
ByMary Hayden

part |55 pages

New policy spaces of education

chapter |15 pages

Autonomy in the global era

Euro-regionalism and new policy spaces in education
ByLaura C. Engel

chapter |18 pages

‘You expect school to be the happiest times of their lives, but it's not'

New policy spaces and the unattainable pursuit of equity
ByMolly Warrington

chapter |20 pages

School building redesign

Everyday spaces, Transformational policy discourses
ByJohn Horton, Peter Kraftl

part |68 pages

Lifelong learning and work spaces

chapter |22 pages

New places of work, new spaces of learning

ByAlan Felstead, Nick Jewson

chapter |23 pages

Bridging institutional divides

Linking education, careers and work in ‘organizational space' and ‘skill space’ dominated employment systems
ByGünter Hefler, Jörg Markowitsch

chapter |21 pages

The spatial dimensions of workplace learning

Acquiring literacy and numeracy skills within the workplace
ByNatasha Kersh, Edmund Waite, Karen Evans

part |58 pages

Cyber-spaces and virtual learning

chapter |14 pages

(Im)mobilities and (dis)locating practices in cyber-education

ByRichard Edwards

chapter |25 pages

Learning in an open world

ByGráinne Conole

chapter |17 pages

Cyber-spatial mediations and educational mobilities

International students and the internet
ByFrancis Collins

chapter |3 pages


From changing spaces of education to changing spaces of learning
ByAlison Fuller, Rachel Brooks, Johanna Waters