OBJECTIVE: An understanding of end users is necessary if one is to design to meet human needs. This study measured four broad concepts related to lighting to contribute to our understanding of end users in this domain: knowledge about technical aspects of lighting; beliefs about the effects of lighting on people; preferences regarding lighting; and importance of lighting. RESEARCH DESIGN: The study was a survey of a large group of university undergraduates. Sets of questions relating to each of the four concepts were created from the literature on lighting and interviews with other subjects. The lighting types and settings deliberately referred to circumstances familiar to these subjects. The questionnaire was completed during university classes. ANALYSIS: Descriptive statistics and inferential analyses of specific hypotheses were used to assess the state of these end users' knowledge, beliefs, preferences, and ratings of the importance of lighting and the interrelations between these variables. KEY FINDINGS: The results show that lighting is important to laypeople and reveal that people to whom it is important desire more control over lighting. These subjects perceived that they had little control over lighting but desired much more. A large percentage of respondents believed that fluorescent lighting can be detrimental to one's health, and those who endorse these views about health effects also believe that natural daylight is superior to electric light. CONCLUSION: Design to meet human needs will improve if better understanding is gained of the beliefs, preferences, and knowledge of the client. This report includes specific suggestions for applications and provides pointers for both designers and researchers.
Journal of Interior Design – Wiley
Published: Sep 1, 1993
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