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Western University
Psychology 2990A/B
Doug Hazlewood

Engineering PsychologyHistory and Scope of Engineering PsychologyEngineering Psychology The design of machines and equipment for human use and the determination of the appropriate human behaviours for the efficient operation of the machines also called human factors human engineering ergonomicsUntil the 1940s the design of machinery and equipment was solely the responsibility of engineersAdapting the worker to the machine was accomplished through timeandmotion studiesWeapons developed for WWII placed great demands on humans for strength sensing and perceiving however mistakes were still frequentThe system or interaction of the person and the machine was not functioning properlyA pilot would be used to one type of plane and then sit in another and not know where anything wasNo consistency in operating characteristics of aircraft controls1979 an accident occurred in a Nuclear Power plant at Three Mile Island because of lack of attention to human needsHuman factors are the reason for 66 of aircraft accidentsEngineering psychologists were added to staff to investigate pilot and crew fatigue stress health issues and equipment designHighmounted brake lights reduce the incidence of rearend collisions by 50Also study the effect of tinting or solar film on car windowsMail carriers mailbag with a waistsupport strap and a double bag using both shoulders reduces back problemsMost welldeveloped human factors programs are in the automobile electronics and food industriesNet gains between 1 and 12 over the cost of applying human factors to a workplaceMembers of Human Factors and Ergonomics Society consist of psychologists and engineers but also people from medicine sociology and behavioural sciencesIncrease in the number of psychologist careers in engineering psychologyTime and Motion StudyAn early attempt to redesign work tools and to reshape the way workers performed routine repetitive jobs1898 Fredrick Taylor had the first systematic attempt to study the performance of specific job tasksHe looked at steel shovelers and determined the optimum shovel and weightFirst empirical demonstration of the relationship between work tools and worker efficiencyFrank Gilbreth and Lillian Gilbreth were the biggest promoters of time and motion studies Interested in the mechanics of job performanceEliminate all unnecessary motionStarted with bricklaying Frank became the fastest bricklayer and eventually designed a scaffold so that the layer would always be at an appropriate height350 bricks an hour instead of 120Buttoned his vest from bottom up because it took 4 seconds lessLillianwrote a book called Motion Study and organized workshops on industrial managementIt was her idea to have trash cans with foot pedals and shelves on the side of fridge doorsTime and motion engineers are sometimes called efficiency expertsUPS Drivers carry packages under their left arm step out with their right foot and hold truck keys with teeth face upRules for increasing speed and accuracy of manual jobsMinimize distance between workers and suppliesBoth hands should begin and end movements at the same timeHands should never be idleHands should never do tasks that can be performed by other parts of the bodyMaterials should be held by a mechanical deviceWork bench or table should be of sufficient heightWorkers and labour unions are suspicious of time and motion studies
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