Indoor lighting can affect a person’s mood, performance, and overall experience in numerous ways. Studies have recently shown that lighting and learning are closely connected and that indoor lighting that mimics natural lighting can have an impact on students’ ability to learn and retain material. LED lights give designers and teachers the ability to create indoor light that is perceived to be the same as outdoor lighting and because LED lights can be programmed to dim and brighten as needed, light levels, as well as light temperatures, can be adjusted throughout the day.
Lighting and Learning
A study completed by ZNL TransferZentrum für Neurowissenschaften und Lernen (Transfer Centre for Neuroscience and Learning) between November 2011 and February 2012 found that artificial lighting designed or programmed to mimic daylight increased concentration and performance in students. The study was conducted at two schools in Germany and results showed that students working in classrooms lit by biologically-optimized lights were able to work faster, concentrated longer and made an average of 33% fewer errors than students in classrooms lit with more traditional lighting options.
Lighting and learning with LED lights
To recreate the feeling of natural light and the sky in a classroom, researchers partnered with a local LED light manufacturer. LED light strips were installed in the classroom with blue and white LED lights that could be controlled independently of each other. This design closely simulated the sky and gave researchers and teachers the ability to create a range of lighting temperatures and values.
The science behind lighting and learning
Researchers believe that mimicking natural lighting helps a student’s circadian rhythm allowing students to be more alert during times that they are typically more tired, especially in the mornings. Teachers in the study also reported feeling better throughout the day after the LED lights were installed.