Many people, especially young people with different degrees of autism, find it difficult to concentrate on their studies in a noisy, crowded atmosphere. Autistic people may have a reaction to a red wall, distant noise, and any type of high energy activity. Even a library, a place that is supposed to be quiet, can be unnerving to people with autism spectrum disorder (ASD). People with this condition interpret sounds and sights differently. They may also have a social anxiety and communication problem that inhibits their interactions with other people, especially on a lively college campus.
Dublin City University adopted a new policy in the library by offering special sensory pods for people who have difficulty adapting to the library’s busy environment. These pods, placed discreetly along the walls of the libraries on three of its campuses, offer a small, sound dampening enclosure for reading and studying. This is a new sensory-friendly space designed mainly for autistic students. Other students who are bothered by sounds may also use the pod.
Sensory Pod Design
This is a great place to relax, eliminate stress, and unwind! A sliding door offers entry into a warm and quiet space they can control. The pods have fresh air circulation, but they are still a private space. Each pod is temperature-controlled with air conditioning. The person inside the pod can choose the level of lighting and even the color of the light. Soft lighting is often preferred to the brighter lights of a library. The pod comes with soft pillows and even blankets! Special speakers that control sound can provide music or an opportunity to listen to a recorded lecture.
A pod is a personal escape, a snug retreat, for the person who needs his or her own small space for a limited time. City University of Dublin has found the pod program to be very popular and productive. The university conducted a study over an 18-month period to determine the aspects of college life that aggravated students with autism spectrum disorder and made it difficult for them to attend. The study revealed that noise was a major issue along with food odors, cluttered furniture, walls painted red, and flickering lights. DCU has made an effort to become the world’s first autism-friendly university.
It is important to note that people with autism spectrum disorder experience different reactions to various situations. There are many varieties of symptoms for these conditions. This can include problems with social interactions. Autistic individuals have different talents and often exhibit very high levels of intelligence. They often continue through colleges and universities to attain graduate degrees. DCU is determined to encourage all of its students, including those with various autism spectrum disorders.
The Future for Pods
YOURspace in Fort Wayne, Indiana, manufacturers of pods of all sizes, creates pods that are compliant with the Americans with Disabilities Act. Specifically designed with top-of-the-line sensory equipment to help children and adults relax, engage, or develop within the space of a private pod. With the flexibility of different sizes, features, and equipment, these pods can be built to suit the different abilities and needs of our customers. Plus they are one of the few pods on the market that are ADA Compliant.
Pods include special work-from-home spaces that are private, ergonomically comfortable, quiet, and functional. Office space pods can be assembled and installed in all buildings and residences. Pods are available in different sizes with various color combinations.
At YOURspace, we look forward to creating pods for school rooms and libraries that will help and encourage young people with autism spectrum disorders. More public schools are finding ways to work with students with different disabilities. The library pods will offer ASD students the perfect place to relax and unwind.
Contact us for more information on creating special pods for your education facility.