Verderber, S.F. 1986. Dimensions of person-window transactions in the hospital environment. Environment and Behavior 18(4):450-466.
An empirical investigation focused on person-window transactions in the physical medicine and rehabilitation environment. Attributes of windows view, daylight, and spaces perceived as insufficient in these respects were studied in six hospitals. Preference, environmental documentation, and behaviors associated with windows and windowless rooms were the subject of a two-part interview and questionnaire. The respondent group numbered 250 persons. Nonmetric multidimensional scaling (MDS) was utilized, yielding an array of 21 cognitive dimensions. From evaluations of 56 photographs that sampled a broad spectrum of spaces ranging from highly windowed to windowless, 8 visual dimensions were identified; and 13 nonvisual dimensions distilled from 89 written response items were identified that addressed degree of satisfaction and associated behaviors. Among the findings, ideal window and view conditions frequently contrasted the actual conditions in one's hospital setting; informative views of urban life and nature beyond the hospital, accessible from one's typical viewing angle and position within the room, were desired; minimally windowed rooms were equated with architecturally windowless spaces, and window-views substitutes in windowless rooms were distinguished from similar rooms without such compensatory measures. Implications for hospital planning and design are discussed.