Defense Date

2007

Document Type

Thesis

Degree Name

Master of Science

Department

Environmental Sciences

First Advisor

Dr. R. Leonard Vance

Abstract

Forty-three (43) schools in the City of Richmond were used for this study. The rooms in these schools that were selected for testing were those rooms in which complaints about air quality were made by school staff. Tests were done to find out the counts of the different mold species present in these schools. Air-O-Cell (AOC) samples were taken in all schools, swab samples were taken in a few and in the rest biotapes were used. Samples that were taken were analyzed and interpreted at AmeriSci Laboratories, an accredited industrial hygiene laboratory. Documentation was done for the sampling methods. Statistical analysis was run on the data received. Tables of results were made, discussions done and conclusions drawn from the laboratory results.The null hypothesis for this study is that "Total inside mold counts are not elevated above the total outside mold counts in Richmond Public Schools" and the alternative hypothesis is that "Total inside mold counts are elevated above the total outside mold counts in Richmond Public Schools". Biodiversity of molds in the indoor environment should be equal to biodiversity of molds in the outdoor environment for each of the classrooms sampled. Also, Total indoor mold counts exceeding 1000 counts/m3 means that particular school could be faced with a mold problem. In conclusion, it was found out that 58% of the schools sampled could be faced with mold problems, thereby rejecting the null hypothesis, and 42% had no mold problems at all, supporting the null hypothesis. Cladosporium was the most dominant mold genus in the schools and the school with the highest total count of molds in the rooms sampled was Maggie Walker School. Recommendations were then made to reduce the abundance of molds in Richmond Public Schools.

Rights

© The Author

Is Part Of

VCU University Archives

Is Part Of

VCU Theses and Dissertations

Date of Submission

June 2008

Share

COinS