How do I deal with environmental factors?
Where affective factors relate to your learners and their emotional state, environmental factors relate to the physical environment for assessing and learning.
This environment might be a classroom for some tutors. But it could include other more non-traditional spaces that you use for assessment or teaching purposes, such as a smoko room or boardroom.
Environmental factors often include things like this:
- Seating:. It’s hard to concentrate when the furniture is broken or uncomfortable.
- Classroom layout: As a tutor, you need to be able to move around easily and your learners should be able to see any visual aids you might have like a whiteboard or projector screen.
- Lighting: Natural daylight is best. But if you’re using computers or a projector you need to make sure that these are easy to see with glare from sunlight.
- Temperature: Cooler temperatures keep people alert, but you need to find a temperature that works for the whole class.
- Technology. If you’re using computers or tablets: Do you know how to use them? Do they actually work? Have you done a trial run first?
- Nutrition and sleep: This is less about your teaching environment and more about your learners’ home environments. It’s hard to focus on a test if you haven’t had breakfast or lunch. Or if you are too tired.
As with the factors we already talked about, sometimes environmental factors are out of your control. Or you may only be able to influence them partially. This is going to depend on your teaching context.
For example, if you have your own classroom you’re going to have greater control over the environment than if you have to use a shared space in a work environment.