Teaching Resources >> Exercises

These building investigation exercises are described during the training session and included in the packet. You may download and modify them as needed. When you develop something unique for your own classes, send it to us and we'll post it for all to share. These are Microsoft Word documents. Click on the icons below to download.

Vital Signs Equipment Day
Twelve exercises that quickly introduce students to equipment use, topics, and issues in and about a building or space.

  Title (size in kb) Description  
1. Lighting Variation
(161 kb)
Find the work surface with the greatest variation in horizontal illuminance.  
2. Surface Temp.
(149 kb)
Find the hottest and coldest surfaces.  
3. Plug Loads
(238 kb)
Calculate and compare the power draw of two pieces of equipment.  
4. Glass Transmittance
(1006 kb)
Measure and calculate solar transmittance pyranometer measurements.  
5. Illuminance
(528 kb)
Measure and compare the illuminance levels in three spaces.  
6. Triangulate
(42 kb)
Measure and calculate building heights using a simple triangulation method.
7. Thermal Comfort
(329 kb)
Measure air temperature, dry bulb, wet bulb temperature and relative humidity.
8. Glare
(326 kb)
Measure the brightness of several surfaces and calculate a luminance ratio.
9. Sun Angle Calculator
(303 kb)
Find the position of the sun with the sun angle calculator.
10. Compass
(1100 kb)
Determine the actual position of the building using a compass.
11. Indoor Air Quality
(747 kb)
Observe and record carbon dioxide and VOC levels.
12. Hotseat
(232 kb)
Determine use of a chair by using temperature as a proxy for occupancy.

How Much Energy Do You Use?
A one-week exercise that asks each student to calculate how much energy she or he uses personally, estimate plug loads by taking an inventory of all appliances in his or her home, examine her or his utility bill, and figure out the cost of using the most cherished appliance.
Download document (19 kb)

Your Secret Life
A one-week exercise that familiarizes students with developing a hypothesis, collecting data with a HoboTM, and analyzing results in the form of a graph to reach a conclusion. Temperature loggers are placed somewhere within a building (e.g. refrigerator, south-facing glazing).
Download document (118 kb)

Case Study Project
A five-week exercise in which student teams conduct a building investigation (abstract, introduction, hypothesis, methodology, data analysis, conclusion, design lessons learned) and then develop web-based documents.
Download document (53 kb)


Teaching Documents
- Exercises
- Case Study Evaluation
- Others' Contributions
- Passing the Baton

Workshop Documents
- Training Workshop RFP
- FAQs about the RFP
- Team Presentations
   Aug 2005 New Smyrna Beach, FL
Oct 2004 Falmouth, MA
   Jan 2004 Phoenix, AZ
   Aug 2003 Oberlin, OH
Jan 2003 Portland, OR

Admin Documents
- Word Template (229 kb)
- Surveys
   Pre Evaluation (166 kb pdf)
   Post Evaluation (156 kb pdf)
   Return Sheet (58 kb doc)

Brook Muller measures incident radiation on glass