Muted reverberation in the classroom

Recommendation 76
– finish walls and ceilings with sound absorbing materials
– apply the latest techniques and materials against reverberation

Chapter (theme)
Architectural spaces (noise / acoustics)

Because of
sensory sensitivity: sound

In order to
decrease or avoid noise.

In the theme ‘sound’ it is stated that noise is one of the – if not the – most important sensory challenge for people on the spectrum. In ‘noise and acoustics’ the noise to which students and teachers are subjected on a daily basis is rather extensively discussed. Noise in schools appear to be the order of the day in all modern countries.
In other words: measures which bring down noise levels in schools are essential to the well-being of students on the spectrum.

Reverberation is a crucial problem in school classes. Regardless of the noise source (from outside, through installations such as the air system and, significantly, from students and teachers themselves), it is the reverberation which determines the nuisance factor.

Muting the reverberation in a school class is a technical matter which cannot be treated in detail here. The principle is to make floors, walls and ceilings sound-absorbent. In this area new techniques and materials are developed all the time.

One of many examples is to be found in Oberdörster&Tiesler who installed sound-absorbing wall- and ceiling boards which achieved a spectacular increase in ‘quiet class time’. Work related stress of teachers decreased accordingly.


See a picture of detailed reverberation measures p 10 of Oberdörster Markus en Gerhart Tiesler, Akoestiek in Moderne Onderwijsgebouwen. Over pedagogische trends, ruimte akoestiek, gezondheid leraren en gedrag leerlingen, Bremen, Universiteit van Bremen, Instituut voor interdisciplinair onderwijsonderzoek, 2006. DPF