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Green Habitats: Partners in Sustainable Lighting Education

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2011 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition


Vancouver, BC

Publication Date

June 26, 2011

Start Date

June 26, 2011

End Date

June 29, 2011



Conference Session

"Green" Topics in Architectural Engineering

Tagged Division


Page Count


Page Numbers

22.760.1 - 22.760.12



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Paper Authors


Mary Ann Frank Indiana University Purdue University, Indianapolis

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M.S. Adult Education
Lecturer in Interior Design Technology

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Green Habitats: Partners in Sustainable Lighting EducationThere is currently considerable activity in residential building for LEED certification, includingenergy efficient Habitat for Humanity homes that have reached the Platinum level. Greenlighting design practices contribute to this highest level of LEED achievement howeverhomeowners are not always knowledgeable about how to sustain energy efficiency throughlighting. The LEED for Homes Rating System provides minimal description for achievinglighting credits toward certification and little supplemental information about lighting to educatethe homeowner or other lay person (USGBC, 2008). As a result, homeowners are left to rely ontheir own consumer information with regard to maintaining an energy efficient lighting systemand over time can become less satisfied with the aesthetic and functional results.This paper reviews and examines an educational experience across interior design andarchitectural technology disciplines to learn about energy efficient lighting and apply it in aconsumer education effort. Specifically, it describes the pedagogy of a design project wherestudents apply concepts and technologies of current lighting trends in energy efficiency to thepractice of implementing and maintaining successful lighting systems. The project focuses on: 1. Identifying current LEED Platinum certification for Homes, 2. Correlating LEED standards to appropriate lighting design strategies, 3. Designing an energy efficient lighting system for new Habitat for Humanity construction, and 4. Creating and delivering consumer education for homeowners to successfully maintain their lighting system.The pedagogical discussion focuses on the appropriate combination of the art and science oflighting so that students design functionally effective lighting systems that are also aestheticallypleasing to homeowners. Through this approach, homeowners are more likely to continuemaintenance of their system when it is one that provides pleasing, effective, and energy efficientlighting. Students then educate homeowners in the effective selection of lamps, considering costand characteristics, as well as maintenance strategies to keep lighting optimally functional.Students apply a foundation of lighting education to ever-changing lighting technology and howit can effectively apply to the consumer. Literature reviews of consumer education efforts in newlighting technologies combined with student research of LEED standards in Habitat forHumanity construction address the need for consumer-friendly lighting education.With upcoming U.S. legislation for increased efficiency of incandescent lighting, students learnhow to address public education efforts to realize energy savings. Their contributions toenvironmental sustainability are measured by homeowner response to education andmaintenance strategies that students create. Through this interdisciplinary approach, students ofinterior design and architectural technology build upon the strengths of each discipline to engagein a viable design and teaching opportunity that realizes measurable impact in sustainablepractices.

Frank, M. A. (2011, June), Green Habitats: Partners in Sustainable Lighting Education Paper presented at 2011 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition, Vancouver, BC. 10.18260/1-2--18041

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