Type and Source of Light

Type and Source of Light

Orientation of Windows (OW)

From the supporting literature (linked above), there is no consistency in the orientation of windows. However, the design of windows that maximize daylight was supported by many researchers. The quality of classroom is measured by its design features and or use features. The orientation of windows that maximize natural lighting reduces energy consumption. Blocking elements should be away from lighting source.


1. Maximize the use of natural lighting in the design, orientation, and selection of window system.

2. Avoid designing classrooms without windows.

3. The orientation of window should be away from all blocking elements.

4. Always use lighting fixtures to support daylight.

5. Select light fixtures whose wavelengths are equal or similar to sunshine.

6. Consider students behavior and outcomes as it relates to lighting, in the design of classrooms, school buildings, and window orientation.

7. Northern and southern classroom orientations improve energy saving in buildings.

Lighting Sources (LS)

From the supporting literature (linked above), lighting sources defined as daylight and lighting fixtures. It is important to complement daylight with lighting fixtures for improved health and performance of occupants. The choice and selection of lighting fixtures that supports natural light should be based on fitness and performance.


1. Select lighting source based on suitability for the task, building, neighborhood, energy efficiency, beauty, and lighting system performance.

Natural Light (NL)

From the supporting literature (linked above, daylight improves students behavior, achievement, and performance. Maximizing the use of natural light reduces heat gain, and increases savings by reducing energy demand, operation, and maintenance cost. Natural light guarantees improved health, productivity, safety, reduces stress and energy cost. Daylight also makes buildings sustainable and enhance their aesthetic view.


1. Promote the design of classrooms and buildings that maximize natural lighting.

2. The design of classrooms and choice of lighting system should be centered on the occupants, to reflect their psychological and physiological well-being.

3. Consider the age, height, and weight of students in determining the amount of light and color that is appropriate for them.

Lighting Fixtures (LF)

From the supporting literature (linked above), lighting fixtures involves all lighting sources other than daylight. Lighting fixtures complement natural light for optimal performance. Different lighting fixtures have impacts on students, and the choice of these fixtures are influenced by designers and architects rather than occupants and educators. In choosing any lighting fixture such as low-frequency ballast, high-frequency ballast, cool white fluorescent lamps, LED, full-spectrum fluorescent, full-spectrum fluorescent lamps with ultraviolet light supplements, high-pressure sodium vapor lamps and other lamps, it is important to address the concern of BUG, flicker and color temperature. For quality illumination, lighting fixtures should provide equal or similar to that of daylight.


1. Use the right amount and quality of lighting fixtures to complement natural light.

2. Select lighting fixtures based on task suitability, energy efficiency, and performance.

3. Select lighting fixtures with adjustable lighting control.

4. Use flicker-free automatic dimming luminaries.

5. Avoid using (artificial light) Light at Night (LAN).

Task Lighting (TL)

From the supporting literature (linked above), task lighting involves the measurement of light, light standards and availability. It identifies the combined amount of daylight and artificial light available for a given task. There was no consistency on lighting standard by researchers. However, it was observed that light level for classrooms should not be below 30 fc. The distribution of light in a classroom is important, as well as the level of illumination and color temperature. Low or very high levels impacts student reading. Artificial light settings also vary greatly in classrooms and should be controlled.Recommendations

1. The distribution of light in classrooms should not exceed a ratio of 8:1 of maximum foot-candles to minimum foot-candles.

2. Classrooms should be of moderate illumination, not low and not too bright (high).

3. Select an illumination level that fits classroom activity.

Glare (GL)

From the supporting literature (linked above), the existence of strong and uncontrolled light in classrooms impacts students health and performance. It also increases students stress level and makes them uncomfortable. Glare can either be directly from a light source (sunlight or artificial light) or from reflecting objects and can also be a combination of both. The effect of glare on students varies and could depend on factors such as age, weight, height, and academic achievement.


1. Avoid illuminating classrooms with inefficient lamps.

2. Ensure that lights are evenly distributed and controlled.

3. Use blinds and other shading devices to control glare.

4. Consider the orientation of windows in the design of classrooms.

5. Use a trackable digital blind system that maximizes the use of natural light, energy efficient, and also shows blinds’ position and rate of change.

6. Examine the impact of different types of lighting systems and sources on students.

7. Encourage the adoption of an integrated design approach. This ensures that the concern for glare is taken care of in the design.

8. Educate building occupants on the building design and control systems.

9. Create a system that encourages feedback from the occupants and incorporate their feedback into the design.

Quality of Lighting (QL)

From the supporting literature (linked above), the provision of quality lighting is key to students performance. The quality of light provided by lighting fixtures should be same or similar to that of daylight. An integrated approach to quality lighting will involve different professionals, sustainability issues, human factors, and any other factor that does not impact human health. Quality lighting refers to natural light and artificial light that meet certain standards and expectations.


1. Maximize the use of natural lighting.

2. Complement natural light with good lighting fixtures.

3. In addition to specific standards and expectations, select lighting fixtures that meet LEED standard.


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