Study FreshStudy Fresh aims to increase productivity in Queensland schools through ensuring the healthiest possible learning environment. To do this, we run workshops with schools where students build their own indoor air quality (IAQ) sensors, monitor the air quality in their classrooms and learn ways through which they can improve it.

IAQ can be a problem in occupied spaces such as classrooms when there is insufficient ventilation to replace stale air. The trend towards retrofitting reverse cycle air conditioners into classrooms has been vital in improving the thermal comfort of our learning environments, but it can have a detrimental effect on air quality if windows are shut continuously for AC operation. Unlike heat or cool, we can’t always sense poor IAQ until it is bad enough to affect concentration and cognitive performance. Which is why it is vital to measure it. By measuring IAQ in classrooms, Study Fresh intends to start conversations with teachers and students and assist them in negotiating better air quality in classrooms.

So far Study Fresh has engaged over 550 students across 15 schools in hands-on workshops and collected IAQ data from over 40 classrooms. The workshops provide children with a hands-on introduction to simple programming in Python and fit within schools’ Digital Technologies curriculums. The logger deployments have assisted teachers in identifying problematic classrooms and working toward solutions to improve ventilation.

See the Study Fresh feature on p.16 of the Future Learning Magazine

Would your school like to get involved with Study Fresh? Contact Dr Stephen Snow: s.snow@uq.edu.au

UQ Study Fresh interviews from STEMPunks

UQ Study Fresh visits Mater Dei Catholic School, Brisbane 

UQ Study Fresh visits Brisbane Grammar School

This project is made possible by the Office of the Queensland Chief Scientist Citizen Science Grants.

Going Regional!

Study Fresh is hitting the road, thanks to further support from the Office of the Queensland Chief Scientist through the Engaging Science Grants scheme. We have already visited the towns of Warwick, Dalby, Oakey and are looking forward to meeting some more future air quality scientists in schools as we get around southern regional Queensland! Are you a school located in regional Queensland and want to take part? 

Get in touch

Dr Stephen Snow
e: s.snow@uq.edu.au


[Photo below is from Dalby SHS, reproduced from the school newsletter with permission]

 

Project members

Academic and Research Staff

Dr Paola Leardini, School of Architecture

Dr Lisa Ottenhaus, School of Civil Engineering

Dr Marie Boden

Lecturer
School of Information Technology and Electrical Engineering

Dr Mashhuda Glencross

Senior Lecturer in Computer Science
School of Information Technology and Electrical Engineering