Users with special hearing and communication needs

Criterion 1c aims to ensure that the acoustician has considered designing the building to better meet the acoustic requirements for users with special hearing and communication needs.

The extent and scope this should cover will depend on the building type. The following information, taken from The UK Department for Education ‘Acoustic design of schools: performance standards building bulletin 93′ (February 2015) provides clarity as to the type of users typically to be considered:

Users with special hearing or communication needs includes, but are not limited to, people with permanent hearing impairment or with severe or complex needs, including:

  • speech, language and communication difficulties
  • visual impairments
  • fluctuating hearing impairments caused by conductive hearing loss
  • attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD)
  • an auditory processing disorder or difficulty
  • being on the autistic spectrum

Such users should be considered by the suitably qualified acoustician, along with the other points a-d when giving early design advice regarding room layout, sound insulation and reverberation times etc.

01/03/2019: Amended to clarify that this is a 'typical' list of users, but does not impose a new requirement.