Acoustics in Educational Spaces & Classrooms

Tuesday, September 1, 2015
Good acoustics play a significant role in the effectiveness of instructional and educational spaces. Classrooms with excessive noise reverberation make it difficult for students to understand what is being taught. This is especially true for children with learning disabilities who have a far more difficult time paying attention to their teacher, which is neither good for the student nor the rest of the class.
 
According to a recent paper issued by the American Speech-Language-Hearing Association (ASHA) along with representatives from the acoustics industry, the optimal Reverberation Time (RT 60) for a classroom is .5 seconds (in the speech intelligibility range).
 
Tips for Soundproofing a Classroom:
  • Install absorption materials on the rear wall, opposite the instructor. Covering them with reflective surfaces causes too much reverb.
  • Add acoustical treatments to the rear ceiling area. Remember to keep the front ceiling to midway reflectivity to help with the projection of the instructor or teacher’s voice.  
  • In order to reach the suggested reverberation time of .5 seconds, you may need to add additional acoustical treatments to the upper side walls or walls opposite windows.
When soundproofing a classroom, these guidelines will greatly increase the students’ ability to understand the instructor and create an enhanced learning environment.
 
Acousti Engineering Company of Florida has had the opportunity to work with many educational centers over our 46 years in business. One of the projects we completed utilizing this acoustical technology to augment education was for Manatee Technical Institute in Bradenton, FL. The two-story, state-of-the-art $44 million facility, boasts 210,000 square feet of space for about a dozen academic programs, including architecture and construction, culinary arts, manufacturing, information technology, hospitality, healthcare, tourism, and more.
 
Acousti was the ceiling and acoustical wall subcontractor for the project under supervision of Beck Group, assisting the general contractor while the job was still being developed. With years of experience under our belt, we helped establish realistic budgets and coordinated with the architect for design, product, and overall intent, providing a one-stop shop of assistance from preparation through completion. The curved ceiling design necessitated detail while the acoustical wall panels had to correspond with elements of the building and blend away into the walls. To enhance the wall's acoustical properties, several wall panels were covered in a special acoustical fabric.
 
For more information about what Acousti Engineering Company of Florida can accomplish for your educational facility, call us today at (800) 434-3467. 
Staff 9/1/2015

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