USA Today reports that institutions of higher learning are making big changes in response to the current generation of students enrolled, or expected to enroll in the near future. Institutions are trying to meet the challenge of accommodating students who are immersed in technology, accustomed to time alone, but are also good at working collaboratively. Hillier Architecture in Princeton, NJ asked more than 200 colleges and universities how they are preparing for the influx of students who have no idea of what life was like before the digital explosion. The research uncovered that many students are used to their own rooms, prompting more single-room and suite options. In addition, instead of vast, open spaces, schools are rethinking their approach to common areas and student centers, and are now opting for more “nooks and crannies” in design. However, today’s “digital native” expects and demands flexibility for the 24/7 lifestyle. Here, there are less overt signs of change. Ed Spencer, associate vice president for student affairs at Virginia Tech University in Blacksburg, says that podcasts and other interactive instruction is crucial for teaching this generation, and adds: “If (instructors) don’t go that route, they’ll have a classroom of students surfing the net, listening to iPods and e-mailing about how bad this professor is.” …