Behavioural Mapping

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In any man-made environment, discrepancies may exist between the intent of its design and how it is actually used.


Behavioural Mapping allows researchers to determine how participants use a designed space by recording participant behaviours and/or tracking participant movement within the space itself.

Use When

Behavioural mapping can be useful to help identify underlying patterns of participant movement and behaviour within a given environment.

Use For

Planning improvements to an existing space, improving the overall design of similar spaces in the future or confirming that a newly designed or redesigned space supports the behaviours for which it was designed.


This methodology is unobtrusive (done “at a distance”) and often undertaken in public areas, so participant consent may not be required.

The process for “person-centred” behavioural mapping is outlined below.

1) learn the facts here now Materials – Begin with a site plan or map—typically, a top-down-style drawing of the area under study, sketched on paper or created with a graphics software application. Produce multiple photocopies or prints of the map as necessary. (A single sheet can capture both motions and behaviours, visually aggregating the data in the process; however, this may prove more difficult to read than tracking individual participants on separate sheets.)

2) rencontres ado 76 Parameters – List the behaviours that will be recorded during the study. This crucial step helps researchers to avoid making assumptions about the behaviours they might encounter during the study. It also helps them avoid the temptation to record every observed behaviour rather than those deemed most relevant to the research question. Develop a method of notation for locating recorded behaviours on the map, such as initials, symbols or colour- coded dots. Depending on the needs of the study, researchers may also wish to capture basic demographic data on each participant. Some studies may benefit from recording each participant’s movement through the space (usually indicated as a line on the map). However, researchers may also wish to record the various directions that a participant faced, or note the places where a participant stopped moving.

Time is often an important data point in behavioural mapping studies, as well. How long was each stop? For how long was each behaviour displayed? How long was the overall stay or journey of each participant? Define the duration of observing a specific participant. This decision can be based on various conditions: after a set amount of time, when the participant leaves the area, when the researcher loses sight of the participant, or any combination of factors.

3) click now Record – Each researcher records the behaviour of a single participant respectively, making notations on the map until one of the conditions for ceasing observation is met. At this point, the researcher becomes available to observe the next participant who arrives. (Note: researchers should avoid overlapping their observations—in other words, no two researchers should track the same individual.)

4) opcje binarne iq option Analysis – Viewing the results in aggregate is often a useful first step. For example, visually overlaying the paths that participants took may help to determine heavy traffic zones versus underused areas. (Recall that behavioural mapping is typically combined with other qualitative methods in an effort to uncover participant motivations.)

site de rencontre pour ado gatineau Behaviour Mapping in a Coffee Shop: Redesigning a space Note: Various factors—including the time of day, the day of the week, the season, weather conditions, special events and calendar holidays—may have a dramatic impact on the number of participants observed and the types of behaviours displayed. To reduce or otherwise account for these uncontrollable variables, multiple visits to the site, perhaps even over the course of a full year, may be required to accurately capture a site’s usage patterns. Examples:

Cosco, Moore, Islam, M. (2010) illustrate an example of behavioural mapping in two preschool centres:


Place-Centred Behavioural Mapping: Does not require “tracking’” of each individual’s movement through a space. Rather, the area is rapidly surveyed at once and all behaviours are noted on a map. Subsequent “snapshots” can be taken at intervals to help identify consistent patterns. Useful for determining how various areas within the space are used.

Chart-based: This method simply tallies behaviours on a chart, often in conjunction with time data, rather than locating them on a map of the environment. Useful when features of the environment are not the primary focus.

Trace measures: Observing the physical evidence of activities, typically as erosion (e.g. wear patterns or “desire trails” on a lawn) or accretion (e.g. use of recycle bins).

CARS, SOPLAY, SOPARC, OSRAC-P: Four of the several formalized models for behavioural mapping with a special focus on children’s physical activity.

GPS/GIS/RFID/WLAN: Technologies that allow for automatically tracking the movement of pedestrians, cyclists, vehicles, shopping carts, etc.

Time-Laspe Video: Useful for recording vehicle or pedestrian patterns, or the use of a space over longer periods. Data is collected by reviewing the material in a second step.

Shadowing: While somewhat similar to behavioural mapping, this “obtrusive” technique requires following a participant closely to track their movements and behaviour, while punctuating the session with interview-style questions to obtain qualitative data “on the spot” about the participant’s reasoning or motivations.

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