Redefining the Classroom: Incorporating Sensory Cognizant Design Strategies
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The perception of space is generated and understood by the multi-sensory orchestration of our five senses: sight, sound, taste, touch and smell. Through the heightening and/ or reduction of specific senses the mind generates emotional reactions as a response to the external environment. As architects we are directly accountable in the way the built environment is designed and how it may impact the user’s emotions and perception of space. This multi-sensorial approach towards perceiving architecture and the ideology of designing for all the senses is commonly referred to as haptic design. In recent years the architectural profession has begun to move towards understanding the range of disabilities that can alter how one travels through space. However, not all disabilities are supported by organizations that regulate the rules of accessibility and design. Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) is a cognitive impairment that can affect one’s neurosensory response and interactions with the built environment. The intentions of this thesis are to understand how architects can better approach the challenges of sensory design in order to create environments that are inclusive for all individuals. The research examines the state of Ontario elementary school classrooms and the lack of design sensitivity towards students with autism and other sensory processing disorders. Through the exploration of spatial qualities, materiality and the methodology of design collaboration, architecture can be used as a tool to better understand how to diversify spaces into sensory inclusive environments.
Cite this version of the work
Jasdeep Multani (2021). Redefining the Classroom: Incorporating Sensory Cognizant Design Strategies. UWSpace. http://hdl.handle.net/10012/16623