Affordances on Route Selection in an Emergency Situation: A Study with Children

Conference paper
Part of the Advances in Intelligent Systems and Computing book series (AISC, volume 777)


Understanding the influence of affordances during the processes of route selection could be a key factor to improve egress in emergency situations. Previous studies [1], showed that in a T-type corridor, the brightness acted as factor of attraction improving the affordance of that corridor in an emergency egress situation Here, we test this effect in children. Participants were presented with an adapted narrative of a fire inside a school. Their task was to choose which of the two corridors they would follow to leave school. We used T-type intersections in which one corridor (left or right) was brighter than the other. Bright corridors were chosen 48% for group aged 3 to 6 years, 65% for group aged 7 to 10 and 90% for adults. Results can be interpreted as children looking at affordances in a different way than adults, what might have implications in the design of safety built environments.


Affordances Children Emergency egress Wayfinding 


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© Springer International Publishing AG, part of Springer Nature 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Ergonomics Lab, Faculty of Human KineticsUniversidade de LisboaCruz Quebrada - DafundoPortugal
  2. 2.CIAUD, Lisbon School of ArchitectureUniversidade de LisboaLisboaPortugal

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