Graduate Studies


First Advisor

Lindsey Bahe

Date of this Version

Spring 4-19-2019

Document Type



Cook, Brandi G. (2019) "Evaluation of Educational Facilities: Practice and Promise", thesis, University of Nebraska-Lincoln.


A Thesis Presented to the Faculty of The Graduate College at the University of Nebraska In Partial Fulfillment of Requirements For the Degree of Master of Science, Major: Architecture, Under the Supervision of Professor Lindsey Bahe. Lincoln, Nebraska: May 2019

Copyright 2019 Brandi Godlewski Cook


This thesis examines past assessment methods used for the evaluation of built environments with a critical review of past research articles to gain an understanding of the approaches and tools used in the facility evaluations. A selection of approaches used to evaluate higher education and school learning environments are compared and critically analyzed in view of current approaches to teaching and learning. One of the main findings of this study regards how tools are currently used by practitioners, via a cross-sectional online survey of design practitioners and decision-makers. To gain a current view of the processes and tools used by design and architectural professionals the primary investigator partnered with the American Institute of Architects (AIA) Committee on Architecture for Education (CAE) Research Task Force (RTF) group to create and conduct a cross-sectional online survey. The recommendations of this thesis aid readers to understand and create a framework for the AIA CAE RTF to take forward to address industry need for evaluation of educational facilities. Post-occupancy evaluation (POE) is about putting people and their needs first. The architectural community cannot make an environment superior for people and their communities without knowing what they want, learning from previous design endeavors and ensuring communities receive excellence in current designs. POE is about reducing waste. Enormous amounts of money, time, efforts and resources go into creating inappropriate buildings that must be adapted or even demolished after completion. Only by finding out how buildings function can we know how to improve our built environment for the future and to avoid a proliferation of the construction industry’s mistakes.

Advisor: Lindsey Bahe