The University of Newcastle, Australia
Available in 2020
Course code



10 units


6000 level

Course handbook


Introduces the student to the scope of ergonomics and the application of ergonomic principles to workplace design and work organisation.

The course is organised in modules:


-Psychological models of ergonomics,

-Work physiology,

-Anatomy and biomechanics in ergonomics,



-Task analysis, workspace and workstation design and the workplace

-Ergonomic assessment of the work environment,


-Work organisation and ergonomics.

Availability2020 Course Timetables


  • Semester 1 - 2020

Learning outcomes

On successful completion of the course students will be able to:

1. Identify, explain and evaluate the impact of various personal attributes (anatomical, physiological, anthropometric and psychological) on proper safe working practice;

2. Assess the effect of physical environment factors on comfort and performance;

3. Apply principles of good ergonomic design of work areas and equipment to a range of occupational settings;

4. Explain the influence of ergonomic principles on work organisation and culture.


Major topics include:

  1. An introduction to the scope of ergonomics;
  2. Physical environmental factors, heat, light and vibration and their measurement;
  3. Psychological abilities relating to memory, perception of danger, attention and boredom and their relevance to work design and organisation;
  4. Anthropometrics as related to the work environment.
  5. Task analysis, workspace and workstation design in the workplace.
  6. The physiology of work
  7. Anatomy and biomechanics in relation to ergonomics.
  8. Physiological, psycho-social and organisational aspects of shiftwork;
  9. Impact of ergonomic issues on work attitude, culture and organisation.

Assessment items

In Term Test: On-line Test

Written Assignment: Essay/Written Assignment

Formal Examination: Exam

Online Learning Activity: Online Discussions

Contact hours


Online Activity

Online 1 hour(s) per Week for Full Term

Self-Directed Learning

Self-Directed 7 hour(s) per Week for Full Term

This course involves self directed study and involvement in an email discussion group with discussion relating to the various modules of the course. Students are required to spend on average 120-140 hours of effort or total load