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Learning Design : Home

Info about Learning Design Team

Spaces, Materials, and Equipment

Our spaces, materials, and equipment play an active role in advancing campus learning, enabling new kinds of teaching and allowing learners to explore new technologies and research practices.

We lend equipment and offer spaces for media production, immersive technology, and making.

Services and Programs for Faculty, Students, and Staff

Learning Design services and programs focus on and partner with undergraduates, graduate students, faculty, librarians, and community members across Philadelphia. Our programs include:

Course Profiles

The Learning Design team has worked with faculty and classes across campus to design and support assignments that make use of equipment and software available through the library.  Learn more about how some of those courses: 

Studying Teaching and Research Behavior

We study teaching and research behavior at Penn and keep up with emerging trends in information literacy, pedagogy, and learning technology.  Here are a few examples of our work:

Learning Design Team

The TRL Learning Design team:

  • Serves as a conduit and incubator for new learning methods and technologies
  • Empowers faculty, librarians, and other instructors to become more effective teachers
  • Prepares students to be technologically adaptive and information literate researchers, to be engaged and critical thinkers and doers at Penn and beyond

We do this by providing space, access to technology, training, teaching support, and student, faculty, and librarian programs.  

Our Values

  • We work across the libraries and the university as partners.
  • We believe that good initiatives include research, assessment, and engagement.
  • We believe inclusive spaces, programs, and initiatives build stronger outcomes and a better environment for everyone


Dorothy Espalto

Digital Media and Design Specialist

Dorothy combines her skills in design, communication, and project management to support the Libraries' outreach and engagement efforts.

Katie Rawson

Director of Learning Innovation

Katie Rawson leads the Learning Design team. Contact her to explore learning groups and workshops, student engagement, teaching with technology, Level Up, and the Librarians Teaching Institute.

Chava Spivak-Birndorf

Emerging Technologies Librarian

Chava coordinates Education Commons services, including 3D printing and other technology resources for teaching and collaboration. Chava came the EC from the Weigle Information Commons, where she worked as an intern, providing support for NVivo, web design, coding, and developing an online presence. Contact her about the EC and TinkerLab.

David Toccafondi

Media Lab Manager

David Toccafondi manages the Vitale Digital Media Lab. He is a Penn alumnus, and has worked at the Library in various capacities since 1995. Contact him about the lab and studio, media production, and immersive technology.


Nicole D. Santiago

Information Literacy Librarian

Nicole D. Santiago is the Information Literacy Librarian. Contact her about Library Lounge and information literacy instruction and strategies.

Eric BarattaEric Baratta

Weigle Information Commons Manager

Eric Baratta is the manager of the Weigle Information Commons, including the Goldstein Electronic Classroom and the Collaborative Classroom. Contact him about the spaces, technology, and programming at WIC.