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Classroom Acoustics: Current and Future Criteria for the Assessment of Acoustics for Learning

Assuring that a student can hear the teacher and classmates clearly, without having to filter out excessive noise has been a common goal of the past, but the current standards fall short of the optimum acoustic for the act of learning. Several important factors have been overlooked by the current acoustic criteria for listening while learning. First, the actions involved in receiving new information while listening in a learning environment and their relationship with the multiple levels of perception and concentration during the “discovery phase” of the integration of new ideas. This presentation describes an approach to define distinct acoustic criteria for learning environments. Data collected from several prototype classrooms specifically built to assess criteria significance, renovation cost/value, measurement reproducibility with acoustic criteria determined on a seat-by-seat basis will be presented.

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