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6 Accoustical Quality, Student Learning, and Teacher Health
Pages 92-104

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From page 92...
... 6 Acoustical Quality, Student Learning, and Teacher Health G ood acoustical quality in classrooms is critical for student learn ing. Research has shown that noise exposure affects educational outcomes and provides evidence of mechanisms that explain the effects of noise on learning.
From page 93...
...  ACOUSTICAL QUALITY, STUDENT LEARNING, AND TEACHER HEALTH FIGURE 6.1 Key noise and reverberation sources in classrooms. One way to describe the desired acoustical quality in a classroom is 6-1 to specify an acceptable maximum ambient noise level.
From page 94...
...  GREEN SCHOOLS: ATTRIBUTES FOR HEALTH AND LEARNING by reducing the potential for vocal impairment, and it may have the ancillary benefit of reducing teacher absenteeism. This issue is discussed later in this chapter.
From page 95...
...  ACOUSTICAL QUALITY, STUDENT LEARNING, AND TEACHER HEALTH tors are typically unaware of the health issues faced by teachers who instruct in noisy classrooms and the expense that this may cost the school district. Effects of Noise and Reverberation on Speech Perception Speech perception studies have investigated how interference from noise and reverberation influences the recognition of syllables, words, or sentences in classrooms.
From page 96...
... Although reverberant speech sound degrades the intelligibility of speech, the early arriving reflections of the speech sound (those that arrive at the listener within about 0.05 seconds after the direct sound) significantly enhance the apparent loudness of the speech and improve speech intelligibility (Bradley et al., 2003)
From page 97...
... The interference with the recognition of speech sounds and with various tasks may explain, in part, reported impaired student achievement in noisy environments. Green school guidelines should address the design of HVAC systems and walls and doors separating classrooms and corridors and the acoustic quality of windows and walls to the outdoors.
From page 98...
... The authors were also able to conclude that the reading deficits were due to chronic noise exposure and not to the noise levels at the time of the test. A later study of students in New York matched students/schools for low socioeconomic status, student absenteeism, and teacher experience and then analyzed reading achievement test scores for grades two through six (Evans and Maxwell, 1997)
From page 99...
... Because it was a cross-sectional study, the effect of long-term noise exposure to aircraft noise could not be measured. Socioeconomic status was not found to be a factor in the size of the effect.
From page 100...
... 00 GREEN SCHOOLS: ATTRIBUTES FOR HEALTH AND LEARNING that transmits directly to the listening child's hearing aid. This approach is successful because it bypasses the noise and reverberation problems of the classroom.
From page 101...
... 0 ACOUSTICAL QUALITY, STUDENT LEARNING, AND TEACHER HEALTH gery (Williams and Carding, 2005)
From page 102...
... 0 GREEN SCHOOLS: ATTRIBUTES FOR HEALTH AND LEARNING Careful HVAC design and installation are needed to meet requirements for background noise from HVAC sources, especially where soundabsorbing duct liners are not being used. Designers should consider using quiet fans, fan silencers, duct vibration "breaks," and duct systems that deliver air to classrooms at sufficiently low velocities to minimize flow noise.
From page 103...
... Current green school guidelines do not fully address controls on outside noise generation. Given the results of research on the impact of traffic and airplane noise on student performance, these sources and the selection of school sites to avoid loud outdoor sound need to be considered.
From page 104...
... Recommendation 6b: Future green school guidelines should specify acceptable acoustical conditions for classrooms and should require the appropriate design of HVAC systems, the design of walls and doors separating classrooms and corridors, and the acoustic quality of windows and walls adjoining the outdoors. This recommendation is most easily achieved by requiring that green schools comply with American National Standards Institute (ANSI)


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