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Community Noise Noise is everywhere (indoors as well as outdoors) Noise seems accepted as a necessary evil in industrial society Noise gets less media.

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Presentation on theme: "Community Noise Noise is everywhere (indoors as well as outdoors) Noise seems accepted as a necessary evil in industrial society Noise gets less media."— Presentation transcript:

1 Community Noise Noise is everywhere (indoors as well as outdoors) Noise seems accepted as a necessary evil in industrial society Noise gets less media attention than other, more conspicuous forms of pollution Noise affects health/well-being Unlike industrial noise, watchdog agencies are less obvious in community noise Aircraft noise may always be present Women, children, and the elderly are especially vulnerable since they spend more time in their homes and neighbourhoods

2 Noise and Health Increase in hypertension (high blood pressure) Increased consumption of medication Increased hospital admissions Increase in physician visits Increase in cardiovascular problems Increase in sleep problems Increase in mortality Lower birth weight babies Slower height and weight gains in children Hearing loss

3 Stress and Health Cognitive appraisal of stress (Lazarus’ model) Perceptions of danger vary with group membership and value systems Physiological effects - Coronary heart disease- High blood pressure - Respiratory disorders- Cancer - Gastrointestinal disease- Complications with pregnancy - Headaches- Dizziness - Sleep disturbances

4 Stress and Health Psychological effects –Contributes to substance and alcohol abuse, smoking, and poor eating habits –These can increase vulnerability to depression, anxiety and sleep maladies Coping attempts (direct and indirect) Certain groups are more at risk Prolonged stress is life threatening

5 Noise and Children Children may be more vulnerable because: –Spend more time outdoors –Physical growth/development is incomplete –Better hearing –Poorer listening skills –Less developed language skills –Immature attention mechanisms –Requirement of a higher signal/noise ratio –Weak frustration coping skills

6 Noise and Children Noise Confusion in Baby Boys –Less space exploration –Less imitative behaviour –More rapid habituation to new sounds High Rise Apartments in New York City –Sound discrimination problems –Poorer reading skills

7 Noise and Children Bronzaft (1981) P.S. 98 is located 220 feet from an elevated train line— classes were disrupted every 4.5 minutes for a 30 second interval. Mean Reading Achievement Test Scores Before Noise Reduction Quiet Side Noisy Side Grade Grade Grade Grade

8 Noise and Children Bronzaft (1981) –Students on the noisy side did significantly poorer on the standardized reading test. –After noise reduction (rubber rail mounts, acoustic ceilings), total noise decreased 6-8dBA (train noise level = dBA) –There were no significant reading test differences for quiet and noisy classrooms following the noise reduction interventions. –Is a Hawthorne effect possible?

9 Noise and Children Los Angeles International Airport (LAX) Study –Difficulty with timed problem solving (but interaction with IQ) The longer they lived in flight path, the worse they did. –The longer they attended school in flight path, the more likely their blood pressure was high. –With insoluble problems, children from noisy schools were frustrated sooner and gave up sooner.

10 Noise Effects in Children Poorer auditory discrimination Reduced physical growth Slower psychological development Poorer progress on standardized tests Lower tolerance for frustration Heightened blood pressure Lessened perceptions of control Lowered attentiveness Heightened distractibility

11 Noise and Altruism Page (1977) - Experiment 1 Noise Level% Helping 50 dB dB dB 35 Dependent measure: picking up dropped cards

12 Noise and Altruism Page (1977) - Experiment 2 Dependent measure: picking up dropped packages Noisy street (92 dB)80% Helped Regular street (72 dB)90% Helped Provided physical help: 72% males 39% females Provided verbal help: 14% males, 45% females

13 Noise and Altruism Mathews & Canon (1975) - Experiment 1 Condition% Helping Natural noise (control, 48 dB) 72 Medium white noise (65 dB) 67 High white noise (85 dB) 37 Dependent measure: Number of arithmetic problems willing to solve

14 Noise and Altruism Matthews & Canon (1975) – Experiment 2 No Cast Condition% Helping Natural noise (50dB) 20 High noise (87 dB) 10 Cast Condition % Helping Natural noise (50 dB) 80 High noise (87 dB) 15 High noise: lawn mower running with muffler removed Low noise: usual background noise in the residential neighbourhood

15 Possible Explanations for Less Aid Under Noisy Conditions: Information overload may cause screening of inputs and a de-emphasis on needs of others Noise may function as a distractor Noise may prevent verbal communication, raising costs (efforts) of social interaction Production of negative affect and mood change: irritation, annoyance, unpleasantness Aversive quality of noise may lead to escape, reducing likelihood of assistance

16 Noise and Perception for Novel Items Korte & Grant (1980) –Location: Dundee, Scotland (pop. 200,000) 2 locations in central business district –High noise (75 dB)Low noise (70 dB) –Novel Items: 1. Pink party hat worn by female, balloons tied to a tree. 2. Sign: “Attention: Project in Progress”, female holding bright yellow teddy bear.

17 Noise and Perception for Novel Items Korte & Grant (1980) –Dependent measure: Awareness of object Noise Level High Low Present35%56% Absent65%44% Support for Milgram’s Overload Model


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