Ergonomics Essay

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Ergonomics Ergonomics, as defined by the Board of Certification for Professional Ergonomists (BCPE), "is a body of knowledge about human abilities, human limitations and human characteristics that are relevant to design. Ergonomic design is the application of this body of knowledge to the design of tools, machines, systems, tasks, jobs, and environments for safe, comfortable and effective human use". The term ergonomics is derived from the Greek word ergos meaning "work" and nomos meaning "natural laws of" or "study of." The profession has two major branches with considerable overlap. One discipline, sometimes referred to as "industrial ergonomics," or "occupational biomechanics," concentrates on the physical aspects of work and…show more content…
Scientific Management, a method that improved worker efficiency by improving the job process, became popular. Frederick W. Taylor, a well known management theorist, was a pioneer of this approach and evaluated jobs to determine the "One Best Way" they could be performed. At Bethlehem Steel, Taylor dramatically increased worker production and wages in a shovelling task by matching the shovel with the type of material that was being moved (ashes, coal or ore). Frank and Lillian Gilberth, another set of management theorists, made jobs more efficient and less fatiguing through time motion analysis and standardizing tools, materials and the job process. By applying this approach, the number of motions in bricklaying was reduced from 18 to 4.5 allowing bricklayers to increase their pace of laying bricks from 120 to 350 bricks per hour. World War II prompted greater interest in human-machine interaction as the efficiency of sophisticated military equipment (i.e., airplanes) could be compromised by bad or confusing design. Design concepts of fitting the machine to the size of the soldier and logical/understandable control buttons evolved. After World War II, the focus of concern expanded to include worker safety as well as productivity. Research began in a variety of areas such as: · Muscle force required to

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