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Measuring the sound levels in my apartment

Podcast about the sound level in my immediate surroundings.

Recorded by Hazel

May 31, 2023


Good day everyone! How are you doing nowadays? For this podcast, I am going to talk about an important part of our daily life that we do not usually notice. I will be talking about sound and noise. As a graduate student, it is very important to me to be in an environment where I can peacefully work and hear my own thoughts, so to speak. Some people find it conducive to work in public spaces such as coffee shops or cafés, but I realized that I work best when I am in the comforts of my own home. Coffee shops may provide a nice ambience to people who choose to work or study there, but may be prone to disturbances due to the noise created by other people. According to Borgers (2018), silence is the best noise for studying. Noise can actually be quantified using several tools available on our mobile phones. In a library, it might be expected to have noise that is equivalent to 40 decibels (dB). Sound is all around us and not everyone realizes that exposure to very loud sounds or noise may prove harmful to our hearing and general well-being. According to the Center for Disease Control (CDC), exposure to noise over 70dB for a prolonged time may start to damage our hearing and above 120 dB will immediately harm our ears (CDC, n.d.). To give us an idea about the loudness of our environment, we can make use of several mobile applications that can measure ambient noise. For this podcast, I decided to measure the sound level in my room. I used the application DecibelX (available on the App Store) and according to the app, the noise in my room tonight (around 8:00PM) is less than 30 dB. Even during the day, this area remains quiet and peaceful, with the occasional sounds of people coming to and from their apartment units. To give you an idea about how quiet it is here, the normal hum of the refrigerator is usually at 40dB and normal conversation is usually at 60dB. City traffic and motor vehicles usually generate around 80-90dB and it is not healthy for us to be frequently exposed to that level of noise. My quiet environment ensures that I get enough rest and that my living quarters are conducive to my work as a graduate student. When I am here, it is quite easy for me to read and to think about ideas for my writing projects. When I was in the process of choosing a unit to rent, the level of noise was not really part of my considerations but I am grateful that I ended up choosing a room that is not only accessible to the university but also a productive space where I can complete my school requirements peacefully. I highly suggest that you also take note of the daily sound levels that you are exposed to. Until my next podcast! Have a pleasant and quiet week, everyone! References: Borgers, M. (2018 November 19). Why the sound of silence is the best noise for studying. Center for Disease Control. (n.d.). What noises cause hearing loss?


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