SAFE08012 2019 Ergonomics

General Details

Full Title
Transcript Title
N/A %
Subject Area
SAFE - Safety Studies
ESCI - Environmental Science
08 - NFQ Level 8
05 - 05 Credits
Start Term
2019 - Full Academic Year 2019-20
End Term
9999 - The End of Time
Edel Costello, Rachel Nugent
Programme Membership
SG_SOCCU_H08 201900 Bachelor of Science (Honours) in Science in Occupational Safety and Health SG_SOCCU_K08 201900 Level 8 Honours Degree Add-on in Science in Occupational Safety and Health

This module examines the role of ergonomics in occupational loss control from the human factors perspective including the individual, the task and the organisation.

Learning Outcomes

On completion of this module the learner will/should be able to;


Analyse organisational failures inherent in accident causation. 


Assess root cause factors and make recommendations for corrective actions.


Appraise the role of human factors in OSH loss.


Describe and justify ergonomic principles for safer, healthier and more efficient and effective activities in the workplace.


Evaluate and propose ergonomic interventions to manage OSH risks.

Teaching and Learning Strategies

This module will be delivered full-time and will include lectures augmented by independent learning and directed learning. Moodle will be used as a repository of educational resources and as a means of assessment (e.g. quizzes and uploading assignments).

Module Assessment Strategies

This module is 30% Continuous Assessment and 70% Final Exam.

Ongoing assessment of understanding and acquisition of knowledge will take place during each lecture using discussion and questions and answers - formative feedback occurs at this time.

Students demonstrate their knowledge of the practical application of hazard identification techniques & risk assessment methodologies by completing a work based assignment - summative and formative feedback will be given.

The final exam allows students to demonstrate their knowledge of the role of ergonomics in occupational loss control from the human factors perspective including the individual, the task and the organisation.

Repeat Assessments

Repeat Continuous Assessment and/or Final Exam

Module Dependencies


Indicative Syllabus

1. Analyse organisational failures inherent in accident causation.

  • Ergonomic risk factors.
  • Accident Causation Theories.
  • Intractable realities in accident prevention.

2. Assess root cause factors and make recommendations for corrective actions.

  • Information processing, coding, compatibility and standardisation.
  • Classification of human error.
  • Decision making.

3. Appraise the role of human factors in OSH loss.

  • Physical, cognitive & organisational ergonomics.
  • The role of the human in human-machine systems.
  • Fundamentals and fallacies of user centred design and the design process.
  • Workplace layout and equipment design.

4. Describe and justify ergonomic principles for safer, healthier and more efficient and effective activities in the workplace.

  • Musculoskeletal disorders and job and work design.
  • The workstation, anthropometrics data, zone of convenient reach, power zone, organisation.

5. Evaluate and propose ergonomic interventions to manage OSH risks.

  • Ergonomic risk assessments.
  • Hand tool design.
  • Human Machine Systems & human-machine interface, displays & controls.

Coursework & Assessment Breakdown

Coursework & Continuous Assessment
30 %
End of Semester / Year Formal Exam
70 %

Coursework Assessment

Title Type Form Percent Week Learning Outcomes Assessed
1 In class discussion, questions & answers Formative Performance Evaluation - % OnGoing 1,2,3,4,5
2 Assignment brief Continuous Assessment Assignment 30 % Week 5 4

End of Semester / Year Assessment

Title Type Form Percent Week Learning Outcomes Assessed
1 Final Exam Final Exam Closed Book Exam 70 % End of Term 1,2,3,4,5

Full Time Mode Workload

Type Location Description Hours Frequency Avg Workload
Lecture Flat Classroom Lecture 2 Weekly 2.00
Independent Learning UNKNOWN Self Study 5 Weekly 5.00
Total Full Time Average Weekly Learner Contact Time 2.00 Hours

Required & Recommended Book List

Recommended Reading
1997-11-30 A Guide to Human Factors and Ergonomics, Second Edition CRC Press
ISBN 0748401229 ISBN-13 9780748401222

This book focuses on the role of ergonomics in the manufacturing context, and looks at a number of design issues: anthropometry, posture, manual materials handling, lighting, noise, warnings, signals, controls, information processing, workstation layout, process layout, shift-work, job satisfaction, task analysis, ergonomic assessment and enhancing manufacturability and maintainability. Intended for engineers and students of engineering who design manufacturing systems and workstations, this text is also invaluable to human factors/ergonomics professionals who want to understand the manufacturing applications of ergonomics.

Required Reading
2005 Ergonomics: The history and scope of human factors Taylor & Francis
ISBN 0415322588 ISBN-13 9780415322584

Heinrich Schenker: A Research and Information Guide is an annotated bibliography concerning both the nature of primary sources related to the composer and the scope and significance of the secondary sources which deal with him, his compositions, and his influence as a composer and theorist.

Required Reading
2004-08-30 Handbook of Human Factors and Ergonomics Methods CRC Press
ISBN 9780203489925 ISBN-13 0203489926

Research suggests that ergonomists tend to restrict themselves to two or three of their favorite methods in the design of systems, despite a multitude of variations in the problems that they face. Human Factors and Ergonomics Methods delivers an authoritative and practical account of methods that incorporate human capabilities and limitations, environmental factors, human-machine interaction, and other factors into system design. The Handbook describes 83 methods in a standardized format, promoting the use of methods that may have formerly been unfamiliar to designers. The handbook comprises six sections, each representing a specialized field of ergonomics with a representative selection of associated methods. The sections highlight facets of human factors and ergonomics in systems analysis, design, and evaluation. Sections I through III address individuals and their interactions with the world. Section IV explores social groupings and their interactions (team methods), and Section V examines the effect of the environment on workers. The final section provides an overview of work systems-macroergonomics methods. An onion-layer model frames each method; working from the individual, to the team, to the environment, to the work system. Each chapter begins with an introduction written by the chapter's editor, offering a brief overview of the field and a description of the methods covered. The Handbook provides a representative set of contemporary methods that are valuable in ergonomic analyses and evaluations. The layout of each chapter is standardized for ease-of-use, so you can quickly locate relevant information about each method. Content descriptions are brief, and references are made to other texts, papers, and case studies. Standard descriptions of methods encourage browsing through several potential methods before tackling a problem.

Recommended Reading
2016-08-05 Ergonomic Workplace Design for Health, Wellness, and Productivity CRC Press
ISBN 9781315356440 ISBN-13 1315356449

Even with todays mobile technology, most work is still undertaken in a physical workplace. Todays workplaces need to be healthy environments that minimize the risks of illnesses or injuries to occupants to compete in the marketplace. This necessitates the application of good ergonomics design principles to the creation of effective workplaces, and this is the focus of this book. This book will: Focus on ergonomic design for better health and ergonomic design for better productivity Presents environments that support new ways of working and alternative workplace strategies, as well as the impacts of new technologies Covers the role of ergonomics design in creating sustainable workplaces Includes ergonomics design for a wide variety of workplaces, from offices to hospitals, to hotels to vehicles, etc... Shows the design principles on how to design and create a healthy and productive workplace The market lacks an ergonomics design book that covers the topics that this book will cover. This book summarizes design principles for practitioners, and applies them to the variety of workplace settings described in the book. No other book currently on the market does that.

Recommended Reading
2016-09-16 Ergonomics in Action Routledge
ISBN 9781134958535 ISBN-13 1134958536

This is a reprint of 978-0-901357-47-2 Ergonomics in action: a practical guide for the workplace is a no-nonsense introduction to the principles of workplace ergonomics. The book is very user-friendly and written in a clear, jargon-free style, and gives straightforward explanations and practical examples. Useful summaries at the end of each chapter highlight key points at a glance. The book focuses on ergonomics in the design process, job design and work organisation. It covers specific areas of ergonomic importance; including hand tools, computer use and manual handling, and also addresses the complex and sometimes controversial topic of upper limb disorders. Ergonomics in action also includes a chapter on the basics of anthropometry and offers several practical case studies to illustrate the human and commercial benefits of following good ergonomic principles. As a consultant ergonomist, Celine McKeown has extensive experience of applying the principles of ergonomics to a wide variety of sectors. She also trains, advises and writes on a broad range of ergonomics and health and safety issues.

Recommended Reading
2014-02-21 Health, Safety and Ergonomics Butterworth-Heinemann
ISBN 9781483192314 ISBN-13 1483192318

Health, Safety and Ergonomics provides an account of the part ergonomics play in the improvement of working conditions. The book begins with the presentation of the advantages of ergonomics intervention. Subsequent chapters focus on the discussion of the principles, applications, and methods of ergonomics such as assessment and prediction of human reliability, hazard awareness and risk perception, and work-related musculo-skeletal disorders. Manufacturing automation, the cost of ergonomic limitations, and the direct benefit from ergonomics action on health and safety are elucidated as well. Ergonomics researchers, health and safety engineers, and production managers will find the book useful.

Recommended Reading
2006-03-15 International Encyclopedia of Ergonomics and Human Factors, Second Edition - 3 Volume Set CRC Press
ISBN 0849375479 ISBN-13 9780849375477

The previous edition of the International Encyclopedia of Ergonomics and Human Factors made history as the first unified source of reliable information drawn from many realms of science and technology and created specifically with ergonomics professionals in mind. It was also a winner of the Best Reference Award 2002 from the Engineering Libraries Division, American Society of Engineering Education, USA, and the Outstanding Academic Title 2002 from Choice Magazine. Not content to rest on his laurels, human factors and ergonomics expert Professor Waldemar Karwowski has overhauled his standard-setting resource, incorporating coverage of tried and true methods, fundamental principles, and major paradigm shifts in philosophy, thought, and design. Demonstrating the truly interdisciplinary nature of this field, these changes make the second edition even more comprehensive, more informative, more, in a word, encyclopedic. Keeping the format popularized by the first edition, the new edition has been completely revised and updated. Divided into 13 sections and organized alphabetically within each section, the entries provide a clear and simple outline of the topics as well as precise and practical information. The book reviews applications, tools, and innovative concepts related to ergonomic research. Technical terms are defined (where possible) within entries as well as in a glossary. Students and professionals will find this format invaluable, whether they have ergonomics, engineering, computing, or psychology backgrounds. Experts and researchers will also find it an excellent source of information on areas beyond the range of their direct interests.

Module Resources

Non ISBN Literary Resources

Marras, W., Karwoski, V., 2006, The Occupational Ergonomics Handbook, Vol. I & Vol. II, Boca Raton aylor & Francis

Karwowski, W., Marras W., 2003. Occupational Ergonomics Design and Management of Work Systems, Boca Raton, CRC Press

Karwowski, W., 2006, International Encyclopaedia of Ergonomics and Human Factors, CRC Press

Decker, S., 2006, The Field Guide to Understanding Human Error, 2nd ed., Aldershot, Ashgate Publishing

Dekker, S.W.A., 2005. Ten Questions About Human Error, Mahwah, New Jersey, Lawrence Erlbaum Associates, Inc..

Peters, G.A., Peters, B.J., 2006, Human Error, Causes & Controls, CRC Press

Cacciabue, P.C., 2004, Guide to applying Human Factors Methods: Human Error and Accidents,  Springer

Roughton, J.E., 2008, Job Hazard Analysis, London, Butterworth-Heinemann

Stanton, N.A., 2005, Human Factors and Ergonomics Methods, CRC Press

Ammerman, M., 2006, Root Cause Analysis: Improving Performance for Bottom-line Results, Boca Raton, Taylor & Francis Group

Sanders, M.H., 2004, Ergonomics and the Management of Musculoskeletal Disorders, Butterworth-Heinemann

Marras, W.S., 2008, The Working Back, John Wiley & Sons

Bhattacharya, A., 2012, Occupational Ergonomics: Theory & Applications, 2nd ed., CRC Press

McCauley Bush, P., 2011, Ergonomics: Foundational Principles, Applications and Technologies, CRC Press

Reese, C.D., 2011, Accident/Incident Prevention Techniques, 2nd ed., CRC Press

Kumar, S., 2007, Biomechanics in Ergonomics, CRC Press

Journal Resources


Other Resources


Additional Information