Effort and Anthropometric Change

Presenters: Paul Adams, Ph.D., senior consultant, Applied Safety and Ergonomics Inc., and Bruce Bradtmiller, Ph.D., Anthrotech

"Effort: A Human Factor That Affects What We Choose To Do"

Dr. Christopher Wickens published an important review article in Human Factors that summarized research findings related to effort and its effects on performance and decision-making. In this presentation, the topic of effort and its effects on decision-making and performance will be discussed in the context of worker behavior and accident investigation. Using Dr. Wickens' taxonomy as a basis, the presenter will briefly introduce how effort affects various types of decisions and behaviors, and provide examples from daily living that illustrate these effects. The purpose of this presentation is to help practitioners understand and apply an area of human factors that intuitively makes sense but which has lacked a bridge between the research community and practical application in product and process design, as well as accident investigation.

"Anthropometric Change In the U.S. Army: Using The 2012 Army Data For Civilian Design"

The Army's 2012 anthropometric survey used largely the same sampling techniques and data gathering techniques that were used in the 1988 ANSUR survey, allowing researchers to track body size change fairly precisely. The significant change in Army body size and shape between 1988 and 2012 has to do mostly with an increase in weight. Stature and stature-related dimensions, such as heights from the floor, have remained largely unchanged. Weight and dimensions related to weight, such as the large circumferences have increased during that time. Because of the differences between military and civilian personnel, it would be unwise to use the Army data directly for civilian applications. However it is possible to adjust the Army summary statistics so they more nearly represent civilian statistics, at least in an approximate way. This approach can be tested using the 1988 survey, from which the raw data have been released. The test results show that the approach certainly is not perfect, and does not substitute for a full survey of U.S. civilians. On the other hand it may produce more realistic civilian design values than using the Army data directly.

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