ROOM – A Web-based Interactive Educational Tool on Building Physics

Zhenzhou Weng, David Coley, Alfonso Ramallo Gonzalez

Research output: Chapter or section in a book/report/conference proceedingChapter in a published conference proceeding

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It is known that one of the causes of the performance gap is a disconnect between the ability of building performance software and those that use it. E-learning tools, if designed properly, could be used to address this by educating or re-educating architects and others about building physics. A review of the literature shows that to be successful, any such tool needs to present a consistent pedagogy, support activity-rich interactions and include a meaningful sensory demonstration. The design of a web-based tool (ROOM), which is being developed for assisting the learning of building physics in environmental design, is then described as an example of how to achieve this. Key to ROOM is that it attempts to provide intuitively the high-level visceral knowledge needed of architects. For example, knowing what a reverberation time of 1.5s sounds like, rather than just being able to calculate a reverberation time
using a formula; or knowing that increasing the width of a window to improve the average daylight factor is in general less effective than increasing the widow height.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationPLEA2016 Los Angeles – 32nd International Conference on Passive and Low Energy Architecture. Cities, Buildings, People: Towards Regenerative Environments
EditorsPablo LaRoche, Marc Schiler
Place of PublicationLos Angeles
PublisherPLEA 2016 Los Angeles
Number of pages5
ISBN (Electronic)978-0-692-74961-6
ISBN (Print)978-0-692-74961-6
Publication statusPublished - 11 Jul 2016


  • E-Learning
  • building physics
  • visual demonstration
  • activity-rich interaction
  • problem-based learning


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