Adaptive Behaviours and Occupancy Patterns in UK Primary Schools: Impacts on Comfort and Indoor Quality

Sepideh Sadat Korsavi, Azadeh Montazami

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference proceedingpeer-review

6 Citations (Scopus)
114 Downloads (Pure)


To improve the quality of school environment and reach state of comfort, it’s important that teachers and students take appropriate personal and environmental adaptive behaviours. Studies on adaptive behaviours are mainly focused on adults, especially in residential and office buildings while children’s adaptive behaviours at schools are not largely studied. This paper has investigated adaptive behaviours, influential factors and their impact on comfort and indoor quality by doing field studies in 4 primary schools and 15 classrooms in Coventry, UK during July, September, October and November 2017 through observations, subjective and objective measurements. The results are derived from observations on around 400 students aged 9-11 and from more than 600 surveys. Results illustrate that students usually take personal adaptive behaviours after or before breaks, and the number of these behaviours increases during warmer seasons and in afternoon sessions. Students’ decisions over appropriate clothing level is related to time of year, however, 27% of students could improve their thermal vote by taking off or taking on jumpers/cardigans. Some environmental adaptive behaviours like door operation are less related to climatic factors, however, window operation is correlated to indoor temperature (R2=0.29) and outdoor temperature (R2=0.35). Observations show that around 80% of all environmental adaptive behaviours are done by teachers, teacher assistants or on their request, which can provide conditions that are not comfortable for children. Therefore, it is important to facilitate adaptive behaviour of children to improve their comfort level.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationProceedings of 10th Windsor Conference
Subtitle of host publicationRethinking Comfort
EditorsLuisa Brotas, Susan Roaf, Fergus Nicol, Michael Humphreys
PublisherNCEUB 2018
Number of pages13
ISBN (Print)978-0-9928957-8-5
Publication statusPublished - 12 Apr 2018
EventWindsor Conference: Rethinking Thermal Comfort - London, United Kingdom
Duration: 12 Apr 201815 Apr 2018
Conference number: 10


ConferenceWindsor Conference
Country/TerritoryUnited Kingdom
Internet address

Bibliographical note

May be reproduced free of charge in any medium for the purposes of private research and study.


  • Adaptive behaviours
  • Comfort
  • Indoor quality
  • Children
  • Schools


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