Skip to main content

Research Repository

Advanced Search

The holistic impact of classroom spaces on learning in specific subjects

Barrett, PS; Davies, F; Zhang, Y; Barrett, LC


PS Barrett

F Davies

Y Zhang

LC Barrett


The HEAD study of UK primary schools sought to isolate the impact of the
physical design of classrooms on the learning progress of pupils aged from
5 to 11 years (US kindergarten to 5th grade). One hundred and fifty-three
classrooms were assessed and links made to the learning of the 3766
pupils in them. Through multilevel modeling the role of physical design was
isolated. Analyses are presented for reading, writing, and math. Variations
in the importance of the physical design parameters are revealed for the
learning of each subject. In addition to some common factors, such as
lighting, a heavy salience for Individualization in relation to math becomes
apparent and the importance emerges of Connection for reading and of
Links to Nature for writing. Possible explanations are suggested. These
results provide a stimulus for additional finesse in practice and for further
investigation by researchers.


Barrett, P., Davies, F., Zhang, Y., & Barrett, L. (2017). The holistic impact of classroom spaces on learning in specific subjects. Environment and Behavior, 49(4), 425-451.

Journal Article Type Article
Acceptance Date Apr 16, 2016
Online Publication Date May 16, 2016
Publication Date May 1, 2017
Deposit Date Apr 19, 2016
Publicly Available Date Jun 15, 2016
Journal Environment and Behavior
Print ISSN 0013-9165
Electronic ISSN 1552-390X
Publisher SAGE Publications
Volume 49
Issue 4
Pages 425-451
Publisher URL
Related Public URLs
Additional Information Funders : Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council (EPSRC)
Projects : HEAD - Holistic Evidence and Design
Grant Number: EP/J015709/1


You might also like

Downloadable Citations