Assessment of campus landscape quality experience in higher education institutions from aspect of students. Case study: campus of Ferdowsi University of Mashhad, Iran

Document Type : Research Paper


1 Msc. student of environment, shahid Beheshti University

2 Geography and environment science faculty,Hakim Sabzevari university


1. Introduction
In recent decades, the development of higher education in Iran has always been associated with the development of physical training centers that this process, especially in the last ten years with the establishment of new fields and increasing the capacity of educational institutions and universities in different sections intensified. However, the quality of the centers of higher education institutions has not involved uniform by population growth and other factors. Open and green spaces are factors have the important role in the evaluation quality of academic centers that usually ignored in the process of physical development centers. Educational spaces, regardless of their buildings and facilities, due to the quality of the environment and your perspective can impact cognitive, emotional and behavioral users to leave. The quality of a school is judged by its sense of place and by the activities going on across the campus. Prospective students, their parents, and faculty count the overall feel of a campus as part of their decision when selecting a school. It also contributes significantly to a university’s ongoing efforts to attract and sustain the best students, faculty and staff, and to reflect its social purpose in a positive way. Few people are happy attending a campus that recognizes the importance of campus landscape spaces; it is no longer the leftover of buildings. Ferdowsi University of Mashhad is the third university in Iran witch due to the diversity of the audience, scope and focus of the units has led the campus landscape and one of the most important and immediate collection of the university. In this research, the main problem of is to evaluate the measures affecting the quality of the campus landscape environment from aspect of Ferdowsi university students. To analyze the components of effective strategies for improving quality, planning and development of university provide current perspectives. One of the goals of this study was to identify the components of the quality of the campus landscape environment of Ferdowsi University and providing visual and environmental quality is to improve quality of life and education. Other objectives of this study are:
- Strengthening the genius loci on campus landscape environment
- Assessment and improvement of University open and green spaces.
-Attention to beauty and aesthetics from the perspective of users, and its use in the planning and development of the current landscape.
- Assessment of ecological effects of landscape and green space from aspect of users.

2. Methodology
The study is analytical research and was used questionnaire to obtain information. For university campus, it is easy to identify the majority end-users of campus landscape spaces are students. Faculty, staffs, parents, visitors and surrounding community members are also important users. Only the major end-users (college students) were chosen to simplify the process. Among college students, the study population included all male and female students living in hostels are the number about 9,000. According to Morgan table, we selected 367 students as a sample size, with half of them from different genders by random sampling. A reliability analysis of the questionnaires is necessary to test how real they reflect the facts. We use Cronbach’s Alpha coefficient to test on the questionnaire items by means of internal reliability consistency. The analysis by software (spss) was performed. Factor analysis to obtain the effect of each variable was used sub-parts on evaluating the quality of campus landscape environment. Also, to obtain the relationship between variables correlation test was used. Pearson correlations and among the parameters has been conducted to build an effective linear regression equation and illustrate whether there is a significant correlation between the items of natural landscape, belonging to the place, visual assessment, health and ecological aspects.

3. Results
The results showed that visual- perception variable, are explained 21.8% of the variance by random sampling and are the highest representation that evaluate by an agent. The highest Pearson’s correlation coefficient with the variable quality, related to the visual- perception with (0.93), respectively. Genius loci and vitality and mental health and nuanced next. Physical aspect of environment has the lowest correlation with the quality of the environment. So, results show the environment quality from aspect of the women with (19.98), less than men (47/21), respectively. Due to the significant mean difference in level of more than 99% is significant. The conclusion we can draw is that a significant positive correlation consists in the relation between the visual assessment, belonging to the place, health, ecological aspects and architectural environment.

4. Discussion
Results of this study provide a framework that takes user’s needs and requirements into account, and the traceability of these needs to design attributes. It also provides other advantages; yet it is not without some tradeoff and limitation. The testing results of scale reliability demonstrate that all the sub-scales are reliable as a whole. On this condition, through the Pearson correlations analysis among the independent variables and between the independent values and dependent variables, we can see that the visual assessment, belonging to the place, health, ecological aspects and architectural environment correlate positively with environment quality, which accords with the hypothesis test. By the following approach, the multiple regression analysis has been conducted in the article, which verifies that the visual assessment, belonging to the place, health, ecological aspects and architectural environment are the independent variables in the regression equation and that all three factors can well predict environment quality. In addition, the coefficients the visual assessment, belonging to the place and health are put in a descending order. The relatively highest coefficient of these three factors reveals the fact that students depend more on subjective variables in campus environment.

5. Conclusion
The results show that the quality of the campus landscape environment directly related with the perception elements. The judicious use of characteristics of landscape elements such as form, color, texture and the like can be used to increase the quality of environmental impact. In addition, visual quality, to create a sense of place and identity formation has a direct effect. These factors led to the formation of students' minds, and it reinforced the university environment. The important note is physical and environmental variables that indicate a lack of attention to the combination of green open spaces and architectural elements. Also, due to the lack of differentiation and function of sex and use of existing spaces, the quality of the environment for the female students to male students is a significant difference in the health. In landscape planning and design, little attention was given to listening to user’s needs or concerns in the past. It is not unusual to see design professionals formulate their design ideas solely based on their experience, “insight”, creativity and artistic training. Although with this approach, design professional may create great designs, however, faced with a set of complex and occasionally conflicting individual and community issues, resolution of the community and project needs may be limited and incomplete. As an important landscape design, the design of campus landscape spaces affects millions of people. Nowadays university campuses are no longer ignored on the global outcry of taking serious actions to safeguard the environment. Universities should be modeled as centers that can enhance teaching and learning and accommodate the needs of all learners and to serve as center of the community for promoting sustainability that could support the concept that high institutions are important symbols of ‘‘place’’. Universities should also be welcoming to all members of their community and promote partnership and collaboration with all stakeholders in policymaking and planning a sustainable environment for learning and research. This can result in problem solving and innovations that support the goals of a sustainable campus.


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