Brill and Wang tie higher in-classroom noise levels to degraded ability to math test scores among students in grades 3, 5, 8, and 11. They report that “Three metrics describing the classroom acoustics, including the average daily A-weighted equivalent level for non-speech, the average daily difference between the A-weighted equivalent levels for speech and non-speech (a signal to noise ratio), and the mid-frequency averaged reverberation time, were analyzed against classroom-aggregated standardized reading and math achievement test scores, while controlling for classroom demographics inclu
Mintz and colleagues studied how having contact with nature influenced human experience during COVID-19 lockdowns. They determined that “Nature contact [was] associated with higher positive affect [mood], and lower negative affect/stress. Various forms of contact with real nature were beneficial to well-being. . . . The study took place in Israel during the last week of the first COVID-19 lockdown, when citizens were restricted to remain within 100 m of home. . . .
Engelen, Rahmann, and de Jong reviewed published studies to learn more about how design influences Quality of Life (QoL) of older individuals. They report that their work “takes a cross-disciplinary approach to understand the current evidence of the relationship between design, healthy ageing and QoL. . . . The extracted literature suggests there is good evidence for the role of biophilia, and indoor environmental quality; emerging evidence for technology, wayfinding, and opportunities for social interactions; but limited evidence for safety/security and adaptability/fit.
Bongiorno and colleagues set out to learn more about how people find their way through cities. The group reports that they “analyze salient features of human path planning through a statistical analysis of a massive dataset of GPS traces, which reveals that (1) people increasingly deviate from the shortest path when the distance between origin and destination increases and (2) chosen paths are statistically different when origin and destination are swapped.
Larson investigated workplace experiences. She determined via interviews that “workers use various practices including personalization and reconfiguration of one’s workspace, creating positive meanings, carving out private spaces, and creating community to create home at work. The humanistic geography literature suggests that workers undergo these activities in order to thrive and live an authentic human existence.
Kalantari and Shepley assessed the experience of living in a high-rise building. They determined via reviewing previously published studies that “negative psychological and social impacts have been consistently associated with high-rise environments, particularly for lower-income populations.”
Researchers continue to investigate the implications of experiencing enriched environments. A team lead by Borgmeyer, reports in an article published in Cell Reports that “’We usually enjoy a beautiful environment, socializing, a cosy apartment, good restaurants, a park - all this inspires us,’ says Robert Ahrends. . . . Previous studies have already shown that such an enriched environment can sometimes have a positive effect on child development or even on the human ability to regenerate, e.g. after a stroke. . . .
Jarvis and colleagues studied the implications of experiencing green environments. They report that “Early childhood development was assessed via teacher ratings on the Early Development Instrument (EDI), and we used the total EDI score as the primary outcome variable. We estimated greenspace using percentage vegetation derived from spectral unmixing of annual Landsat satellite image composites. Lifetime residential exposure to greenspace was estimated as the mean of annual percentage vegetation values within 250 m of participants’ residential postal codes. . .
Lee, Lee, and Choi investigated the psychological implications of savoring art. They learned that “Previous research has indicated that engaging in art activities is beneficial to both psychological and physical well-being; however, few studies have examined the link between attitudes toward art and well-being. In the present study, we have termed a positive and appreciative attitude toward art as savoring art and have investigated the relationship between savoring art and individual well-being. . . .
Munzel and colleagues continue the research into links between environmental conditions and disease. They report that “Noncommunicable diseases (NCDs) are fatal for more than 38 million people each year and are thus the main contributors to the global burden of disease accounting for 70% of mortality. The majority of these deaths are caused by cardiovascular disease.