A holistic approach for the assessment of the indoor environmental quality, student productivity, and energy consumption in primary schools
The perception of the indoor environmental quality (IEQ) through questionnaires in conjunction with in-field measurements related to the indoor air quality (IAQ), the thermal comfort and the lighting environment were studied in nine naturally ventilated schools of Athens, Greece. Cluster analysis was carried out in order to determine the ranges of indoor air pollutants, temperature (T), relative humidity (RH), and ventilation rates at which the students were satisfied with the indoor environment. It was found that increased levels of particulate matter did not have a negative effect on students’ perception while students seemed to link the degradation of IAQ with temperature variations. Statistically significant correlations were further found between measurement results and students’ perception of the IEQ. Students’ sick building syndrome (SBS) symptoms and performance of schoolwork were also investigated as a function of the levels of indoor air pollutants and ventilation, and there were found significant positive correlations between particulate matter (PM) and certain health symptoms. Students’ learning performance seemed to be affected by the ventilation rates and carbon dioxide (CO2) concentrations while certain health effects positively correlated to the levels of PM and CO2. The energy consumption of schools was rather low compared to other national findings, and both the electricity and oil consumption for heating positively correlated to the levels of indoor air pollutants.
KeywordsIEQ Questionnaires Measurements Productivity Energy Schools
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