UBC Undergraduate Research

Sorting Behaviours : Do 3D Display Boxes Improve Sorting Accuracy? Talbot, Clare; Findikliev, Caroline; Davie, Christina; Lau, Ed; Noroian, Emma; Pereyaslavsky, Nicole


The purpose of our research study was to examine whether the sorting behaviours of individuals who frequented the Nest on the University of British Columbia campus would be improved by the addition of customized 3D display boxes to waste sorting bins, which originally featured 2D signage. To test our hypothesis that participants’ sorting behaviours would be more accurate relative to the use of 3D display boxes, in comparison to existing 2D signage, participant behaviours at a sort-it-out station in the Nest were observed for a total of four weeks. The first two weeks consisted of a control condition, during which bins were observed with their original 2D signage, and the last two weeks consisted of an experimental condition, during which bins’ 2D signage was replaced with 3D display boxes. When the conditions were compared through statistical analysis, the 3D display boxes were found to have a significant effect on the total number of items correctly disposed of, and on participants’ individual measures of sorting accuracy. Our results show that 3D display boxes are an effective method of improving waste sorting accuracy and have valuable implications for sustainable policy and practices on and off the UBC campus. Disclaimer: “UBC SEEDS provides students with the opportunity to share the findings of their studies, as well as their opinions, conclusions and recommendations with the UBC community. The reader should bear in mind that this is a student project/report and is not an official document of UBC. Furthermore readers should bear in mind that these reports may not reflect the current status of activities at UBC. We urge you to contact the research persons mentioned in a report or the SEEDS Coordinator about the current status of the subject matter of a project/report.”

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