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Evaluating the impacts of architectural features on wayfinding in healthcare settings using virtual response testing

Led by Parkin Director, Robin Snell, Parkin participated in a recent research study conducted by the Cornell University’s Department of Design and Environmental Analysis, Ithaca, NY to evaluate the impacts of colour, graphics, and architectural features on wayfinding in healthcare settings.

The research explores how wayfinding strategies in interior design can contribute to the comfort and wellbeing of patients, visitors, and staff members in healthcare settings. The study utilized a novel testing approach using virtual reality and EEG data to evaluate the effects of three different interior design scenarios, using altered color patterns, graphics, and architectural features intended to enhance wayfinding in a specific hospital facility. The streamlined testing platform and data-analysis approach developed in this work can make this evidence-based approach more feasible for other researchers and designers, eventually leading to a broad comparative dataset incorporating a wide range of buildings and participants.

To learn more, please click here.

A special thanks goes out to the following institutions and consultants for their contribution to the research and the CBACH project.

  • Government of Newfoundland and Labrador Department of Transportation & Works + Department of Health and Community Services
  • Western Health
  • Corner Brook Acute Care Hospital
  • Design and Augmented Intelligence Lab at Cornell University (Julia Kan, Jeffrey Neo, Mi Rae Kim, Matthew Canabarro, Emme Wong, Clair Choi, Elita Gao, and Michael Darfler)
  • Plenary Health and PCL | Marco Constructors
  • Parkin Architects Limited in Joint Venture with B+H Architects


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