A Quiet Place… For Study

As the semester comes to an end, workload is increasing for students across campus. During open periods, students are struggling to find a silent space to study and get their work done. However, there are multiple options to remedy this predicament.


Photo: N. Buscaglia

The St. Augustine Center for Social Impact made waves across campus upon its installation. It immediately became the centerpiece of Malvern’s campus, establishing a state-of-the-art collaborative space with room for a multitude of new classrooms and facilities. However, it is widely agreed upon among the student body that there is one key aspect missing from the building: a quiet study space. 

Malvern has recently been known for its collaborative atmosphere. A stroll through campus will consistently reveal students working together in a competitive yet welcoming atmosphere, all through the aid of teachers around them. However, all of this creates a great deal of noise and distraction throughout campus, which may be ideal for a group or creative effort, but largely unhelpful for those who are focused on individual work. It is quite difficult to read complicated texts or write high-quality papers often expected by Malvern teachers in such loud areas. It proves to be almost impossible to finish any individual reading or writing during community time when often over two hundred students are crowding the CSI. 

It is important to note the incredible atmosphere that many have learned to love at Malvern. Through the “organized chaos” that may be occurring in common spaces during open periods, some of the best relationships and collaborative work are created. Personally, I’ve been able to use community time effectively to work on group projects or homework assignments that can be done with others. I’ve also been participating at the Peer To Peer Learning Center, assisting underclassmen and building relationships through the program. 

Creating a quiet space on campus should be a relatively easy fix. For one, the effort to begin one is already in the works by way of the Peer To Peer Learning Center. During classes, the center is almost completely silent and widely regarded as a quiet study area. However, when tutoring is active during community time, the volume once again increases. This leaves lunch through community time (11:15-12:35) as the only time of day in which students may struggle to find a quiet spot to study.  This is often the only open time students have during the day, making it crucial to be as productive as possible. 

One of the most viable options for a quiet study space could be an empty classroom. I believe that seniors could be trusted to supervise underclassmen in a silent study area, so teachers do not need to staff the classrooms. Seniors could easily be incentivized to oversee the spaces through lunch coupons or activity credits. The effort to create such a space would be widely welcomed. Students who do not need to study in a silent area, additionally, will never be required to attend. Multiple classrooms could easily be used to account for larger groups of students. 

Another option is making the entire top floor of the CSI a quiet area. This would need to be enforced by teachers in the beginning, as this is currently known as a collaborative space for students. However, due to the acoustics on the middle and bottom floor, making an entire floor silent is not viable unless it’s the top one. 

Malvern’s lack of a silent study area is only a minor inconvenience and has multiple simple solutions. Students should expect a quiet study space by the end of the year because of how simple it is to create one. Talks around campus have already begun and efforts have been put into place to create one. I am thankful that this small of a problem is one of the most pressing day to day issues on campus.