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TitleEffects of Color and Light on Selected Elementary Students.
LanguageEnglish
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DOCUMENT RESUME

ED 383 445 PS 023 327

AUTHOR Grangaard, Ellen Mannel
TITLE Effects of Color and Light on Selected Elementary

Students.

PUB DATE May 93
NOTE 183p.; Ph.D. Dissertation, University of Nevada. For

related document, see ED 382 381.
PUB TYPE Dissertations/Theses Doctoral Dissertations (041)

EDRS PRICE MF01/PC08 Plus Postage.
DESCRIPTORS *Classroom Environment; *Color; Elementary Education;

*Elementary School Students; Environmental
Influences; *Heart Rate; *Lighting; Student
Adjustment; *Time on Task

IDENTIFIERS Blood Pressure; Physiological Response

ABSTRACT
This study compared children's off-task behavior and

physiological response in a normal elementary classroom setting with
those in a prescribed classroom environment. In the prescribed
environment, the colors of the classroom walls were changed from
brown and off-white to blue, while Duro-test Vita-lite fluorescent
tubes without diffusers replaced the standard cool-white fluorescent
tubes with diffusers in the lighting fixtures. Eleven first-graders
took part in the study, which measured their off-task behaviors,
blood pressure, and pulse twice each day at the same time each day
for 10-day periods it the original classroom environment, then in the
prescribed environment, and back in the original environment. Results
indicated that off-task behaviors, as recorded by three observers,
dropped 24 percent after the change from the normal to the prescribed
environment, and that systolic blood pressure readings dropped 9
percent after the change. Blood pressure readings demonstrated a
gradual increase after the return to the normal environment.
(Observer credentials, and olood pressure and pulse readings are
appended. Contains 126 references.) (MDM)

***********************************************************************

Reproductions supplied by EDRS are the best that can be made
* from the original document.
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Page 2

U.S. DEPARTMENT OF EDUCATION
aficoolEciticOomililosearchandinviovmW

EDUCATIONAL RESOURCES INFORMATION
CENTER (ERIC)

)<This document has been reproduced as
eceivod from the person or organization

originating it
Minor changes have been made to
improve reproduction quality

Points of view or opinions stated in this
document do not necessarily represent
official OERI position or policy

EFFECTS OF COLOR AND LIGHT ON SELECTED
ELEMENTARY STUDENTS

by

Ellen Mannel Grangaard

A dissertation submitted in partial fulfillment
of the requirements for the degree of

Doctor of Education

in

Educational Administration

-PERMISSION TO REPRODUCE THIS

MATERIAL HAS BEEN GRANTED BY

EV_(?Xl Mc.AsTvcr
0,0.scQ1

TO THE EDUCATIONAL RESOURCES
INFORMATION CENTER (ERIC)

Department of Educational Administration and Higher Education
University of Nevada, Las Vegas

May, 1993

BEST COPY AVAILABLE

Page 79

70

in off-task behaviors on Day 5 of the recordings.

A total of 310 off-task behaviors were counted during

the first six days of Phase II with a total of 356 for the

seven days of Phase II. Judge A accounted for 25% or 86 of

them, Judge B, 50% or 200, with 70 or 20% having been

counted by Judge C. Table 2

Table 2

Phase II Off-Task Behaviors Recorded By Three Observers

Days 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 Total

Judge A 12 14 8 16 11 13 12 86 25%

Judge B 29 34 30 23 25 30 29 200 56%

Judge C 12 16 11 12 8 6 5 70 20%

Total 53 64 49 51 44 49 46 356

Daily Mean 17.7 21.3 16.3 17 14.6 16.3 15.3

Phase II Mean 50.8 Standard Deviation 5.05

Off-task behaviors on the first day of the second phase

were less than one standard deviation above the mean (53).

Day 2 exhibited an increase of 11 (17%) more than Day 1, 53

to 64. Off-task behaviors decreased on Day 3 from 64 to 49

(23%), but increased by two on Day 4 and then made a sharp

increase on Day 6 (11). The last day of Phase II showed off-

task behaviors at 46, 4.8 below the Phase 11 mean and 28%

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71

below the second day of Phase II which had the highest

number of recorded off-task behaviors for this phase, but 20

off-task behaviors below the last day of Phase I (30%).

Judge A recorded the same percentage of the total off-

task behaviors during Phase I and Phase II demonstrating a

greater consistency in counting procedures. The school

counsellor accounted for a higher percentage of the total,

from 48% to 56% during the second phase while Judge C had a

lower percentage of the total, decreasing from 28% to 20%.

Total off-task behaviors decreased by 89 or 22% from

399 during the first phase (original environment) of the

study to 310 during the first six days of the second phase

(prescribed environment). The decrease was recorded between

Phase I and Phase II when the only change in the classroom

was in the color and light. The standard classroom off-white

and standard fluorescent cool-white tubes were changed to

the blue environment with the full-spectrum Vita-Lites.

With other factors remaining constant within the classroom,

there is substantial reason to believe that the change in

the classroom color and light contributed to an important

decrease in off-task behaviors.

During Phase III, Judge A accounted for 4% more of the

off-task behaviors than during Phase I and II while Judge B

the school counsellor had a smaller percent of the total at

49%, but still counted more than twice as many off-task

behaviors as Judge C (21%) the first grade classroom

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