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Elevate the Learning Environment: USG for Education

Schools are staples of our communities and a foundational aspect of our lives, from the fundamentals in K-12 to pursuing careers and passions in higher education. With such importance placed on the educational system, both in and out of the classroom, there is increased focus on how to make school a more positive and exciting experience for students to grow—and it starts with the physical space itself.

Educational spaces have unique building requirements. From practical needs like cleanability and durability to more specialized considerations such as aesthetics and sound performance, schools need to be a place that exemplifies a welcoming environment to learn and teach. As a result, design considerations for educational facilities have a direct influence on levels of interaction, engagement, and satisfaction for all.

Unmatched Experience

The immediate and long-term purpose of the space and the needs of those using it are the most important considerations when designing for education. And when you consider the fact that the average age of a school building in the United States is nearly half a century old—a majority of which have had few or no major renovations, replacements, or additions throughout their lifetime—there is more than enough room for improvement in the education space.

USG has a team of impassioned experts that can help meet unique challenges and draw best practices from our deep industry expertise. USG works directly with architects, education administrators, facility managers, engineers, IT specialists, and more to deliver premier learning environments that benefit students, faculty, and staff. Through this collaborative effort, USG has earned a successful track record of educational projects across public and private K-12, universities, and colleges.

Creative Design

From performance halls to student centers, high-profile spaces need some character. Whether it’s custom colors, perforations, or finishes, material selection should establish a personality while also welcoming students, faculty, staff, and visitors.

In other spaces like labs and study rooms, creativity is found in simplicity itself. Sleek and subtle designs can provide students and teachers an uplifting and inspiring environment to focus and collaborate. USG Ceilings Plus® acoustical ceiling and wall systems can help achieve aesthetic beauty and high performance from a range of acoustic baffles or pods with countless finish and material options. USG Ceilings Plus® energizes any space with color, texture, acoustics, and visual depth through cutting-edge engineering and innovative design for an inspired ceiling system.

Acoustical Performance

Sound control and absorption have significant impacts on the quality of the experience within an education space. For large spaces of communal gathering like a commons area or lunchroom, it’s important to consider noise reduction ceiling features as people will be talking at the same time in different areas of the room. This also applies to auditoriums and music rooms for both rehearsals and performances that require intentional acoustical consideration.

In classrooms and lecture halls, all voices should be heard clearly and at an appropriate volume without reverberation, echo, or distortion. This allows students to focus on their teachers with the ability to break off into smaller collaborative groups for project work.

USG’s range of acoustical ceiling panels and suspended ceiling systems offers the ease of access and upkeep needed in open plenum designs with focused acoustical performance. Airborne and impact sound can also be mitigated through UL-certified floor/ceiling assemblies using USG STRUCTO-CRETE® Brand Structural Panels with either USG Levelrock® Brand or USG Fiberock® Brand underlayments.

Efficient Installation & Maintenance

Ceiling integration with lighting and HVAC fixtures can help improve accessibility and streamline upkeep throughout the lifetime of the building. Additionally, the expediency of USG Design Solutions allows for high design details with lead times of 8 weeks or less. Considering that most school construction schedules are limited to windows of time when classes are not in session, such as summer break, these modular ceiling system solutions are perfect for educational projects that need a quick turnaround.

Durable Quality

Schools often experience significant wear and tear over the course of a school year.  Many of USG’s ceilings prevent sag, mold, and mildew and are impact-, scratch-, and fire-resistant, contributing to the health and safety of the learning environment. Additionally, washability and cleanability are two additional considerations to ensure the general hygiene and longevity of ceilings in high-traffic areas of the school.

With a range of abuse-resistant as well as mold- and moisture-resistant wallboard, USG offers building materials that can stand the test of time schoolyear after schoolyear. Outside of the halls, USG Securock® Brand Roof Boards can protect the elements from getting in through impact-resistant and resilient roofing solutions.

The USG Solution

USG understands the importance of well-rounded and cohesive building design within the educational space. That’s why USG offers a robust portfolio of building materials, including wall, ceiling, flooring, sheathing, structural, and roofing products that allow project stakeholders to work with a single partner across the lifecycle of a project.

Learn more about how USG elevates the learning environment here.