Classroom design for children with autism spectrum disorder

Alexis Ziegler
ARC623 | Fall 2019

According to the Autism and Developmental Disabilities Monitoring (ADDM) Network, Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) has increased from 1 in 150 children from 2000-2002 to 1 in 59 children in 2018 among children 8 years and older. ASD experts believe that the early years in school, more specifically preschool through 6th grade, are critical in reaching children and establishing a solid foundation for learning and their general well- being (Martin, 2016). Architects and designers must begin to examine the important relationship that occurs between the physical design of space and human behavior.

For this design proposal a current special needs classroom from Iroquois Elma Primary was evaluated. The evaluation included an assessment of materials, usage and organization of space, as well as the acoustic and lighting design. Based on the evaluated design features, a design proposal has been created to improve the existing classroom environment.