The Neurobiology of Biophilia & Spatial Cognition

This On Demand CEU is a recorded presentation from a previously live webinar event. This course explores the neurobiology behind Biophilia’s most healing attribute: a visual connection to nature, which also happens to be the feature with the most robust peer-reviewed research backing its therapeutic qualities. We learn about the connection between the immune system and sensory processing, as well as how environmental features precipitate a neural chemistry that modulates our attraction/aversion to the built environment.

The course unveils the healing potential of indoor sky illusions and how cognitive mechanisms map out our body’s location in relation to our immediate surroundings, as well as to perceived connections to nature. This understanding of how distinct areas of the brain assemble our embodied sense of place provide valuable insights in the design of enclosed interiors for human wellness.

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The Therapeutic Benefits of Perceived Open Space for Healthcare Patients and Staff

This On Demand CEU is a recorded presentation from a previously live webinar event. In this course we explore the impact that healthcare environments can have on patient and staff wellness. We examine the role natural daylight and perceived open space play in modulating cognitive function, and how we can engage our past memories of natural environments to create a therapeutic patient experience. The course introduces a cognitive approach to design that underscores the restorative value of perceived open space as a healing attribute that can engage our biophilic memory.

Two spatial reference frames present in nature, the perceived zenith, the highest point above the observer, and the perceived horizon line, the farthest point before the observer, can be recreated in an enclosed interior space by staging an appropriate illusion to alter our perception of space. Recreating these fundamental spatial maps through an effective illusion enables a range of wellness benefits normally associated with interiors applying more traditional biophilic design principles.

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