NORTH CAROLINA STATE UNIVERSITY
Raleigh, North Carolina
Edward P. Fitts Department of Industrial and Systems Engineering
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Title: Ergonomics (MIE, MS, PhD)
Granted last 3 years: MIE 3, MS 7, PhD 8
Distance learning available: yes
HFES student chapter: yes
Program: Program emphasis is on cognitive engineering/HF in systems design, industrial ergonomics/biomechanics, and occupational safety and health. Students gain breadth of knowledge of physical ergonomics, understanding of approaches to usability evaluation and interface design for human-machine systems, methods for recognition, evaluation and control of safety hazards in complex task environments. Goal is broad preparation. Courses emphasize contemporary theory, concepts, and principles; research techniques and observational methodologies; and the systems approach and computer modeling. Additional courses may be taken in variety of fields, including biomedical engineering, computer science, epidemiology, industrial hygiene, psychology, and public health. (Several courses through ISE program are cross-listed with Psychology.) For superior students, direct-track PhD program exists (MS degree must be completed along the way).
Accredited by: HFES, Institute for Ergonomics & Human Factors (UK)
Contact: David Kaber, NCSU, Dept. Industrial & Systems Engineering, 400 Daniels Hall, 111 Lampe Dr., Raleigh, NC 27695-7906; 919/515-5281; email@example.com, http://www.ie.ncsu.edu/ergolab/.
Catalog: (online) http://www.fis.ncsu.edu/grad_catalog/catalog.htm
Deadlines: 2/1 for financial awards; 6/25 (U.S.) and 3/1 (intl.) for fall
Fee: $65 U.S., $75 international
GRE: 450 v, 680 q, (4.5) 650 a
Other: TOEFL 80 (internet), 575 (paper), 233 (computer), IELTS 6.5 (overall band), 2 years calculus (including matrix/linear algebra), 1 year statistics
Recommended: undergraduate major in engineering, computer science, or related field
Work experience: medium
Interview: medium (if conducted)
Students applying last year: 29
Entered program: 4
% receiving: 90
Available: Fellowship, TA, and RA; all tuition exempt. Also offer positions through NIOSH-sponsored North Carolina Occupational Safety and Health Education and Research Center
Apply: with application
MS: 30 units, thesis research (3-6 units), oral defense of thesis, no languages or practical experience required, approx. 2 years to complete
Nonthesis option: no
MIE: 33 units, no exams, languages, research (project course), or practical experience required, 1 1/2 years to complete.
Nonthesis option: yes
PhD: 72 units beyond BS, qualifying exam, oral defense of dissertation proposal, dissertation research (12-18 units), oral defense of dissertation, no languages or practical experience required, 3 1/2 years beyond MS to complete.
Required courses (credit hours): HF in Systems Design (3), Occupational Biomechanics (3), ISE Seminar (1), Human Performance Modeling (3), Experimental Statistics II (3)
Electives: Occupational Safety Engineering (3), Bayesian Decision Analysis (3), Human-Computer Interaction (3), Systems Safety (3), Ergonomic Performance Assessment (3), Human Information Processing (3), Upper-Extremity Biomechanics (3), Spine Biomechanics (3), Cognitive Engineering (3), Research Practicum in Human Factors & Ergonomics (3), Safety Practicum (3), Risk Assessment (3)
Required courses outside department: 3 minor courses for MS; 5 minor courses for PhD
Recommended courses outside department: 3 to 5 as part of minor
Offered: night classes; statistics in summer
Distance learning courses: Human Factors in Systems Design, Occupational Safety Engineering, Occupational Biomechanics, Bayesian Decision Analysis. No distance degrees currently offered.
Class size: 5-25
Research facilities: Cognitive Ergonomics Lab contains major research instrumentation for study of human-computer/automation interaction in complex systems control, human factors issues in virtual environment interface design for training, and dual-task/team performance in synthetic representations of real-world systems (ATC, commercial aircraft, telerobotics). State-of-the art resources include: STISIM M400 driving simulator with three Dell XPS 720 systems and HD display screens; X-Plane flight simulator workstation including two Dell Optiplex systems; Silicon Graphics (dual-processor) workstation integrated with 3-D InFocus stereoscopic projection system and PC-controllable linear treadmill; two virtual reality (VR) workstations including Dell T5500 and Precision 530 systems integrated with Stereographics and nVidia light-shutter goggles, stereoscopic display screens, and 3-D HDTV Novint and Sensable haptic devices. (VR systems can also be integrated with existing VirtualResearch VR8 Head-mounted Display.) Other major instrumentation includes motion and eye tracking systems; Ascension Technologies MotionStar, Ascension Technologies 6-DOF mouse, Polhemus FastTrak sensor, ASL dual-eye tracker. Lab also has network of Dell Optiplex computers and multiple tablet PCs. Physical Ergonomics Lab has state-of-the-art equipment for lab and field biomechanical analyses, including multiple Lumbar Motion Monitors, Biometrics electro-goniometers and ThoughtTechnologies data analysis software, 10-channel EMG collection/processing system, 16-channel EMG collection/processing system, Kin/Com 125e dynamometer, two 32-channel A/D data acquisition systems, two Bertec 3-D force platforms, Kistler GaitWay treadmill with integrated force platform, Biodex Rehabilitation Treadmill (RT400), keyboard keying force measurement system, two Peak Motus video-based motion analysis system. Lab also has network of PCs for data analysis and desktop computing.
Teaching: Teaching assistantships available at 1/2 or 1/4 time, most involving large undergraduate courses and/or lab sections (Ergonomics, Work Design & Analysis); some teach sophomore-level courses such as Engineering Economy. Advanced students may have opportunity to teach junior/senior-level ergonomics course.
Current research activities: Design of virtual reality applications and haptic control methodologies for fine motor skill rehabilitation; service/nursing robot design and patient emotional response classification; assessment of driver individual differences and in-vehicle distractions on situation awareness and cognitive workload under hazard conditions; developing measures and models of aviation display clutter for prediction of pilot performance; modeling pilot cognitive performance with advanced cockpit automation under next generation operating concepts; study of repetitive stress injuries in maintenance operations; electro-goniometer analysis of posture positions in scaffolding tasks; electromyography analysis of fine motor control following pre-fatiguing manual material handling; work-related musculoskeletal disorders in veterinary tasks and ergonomic interventions.
Active: 9 men, 5 women
First-year students: 3
Mean scores: GPA 3.5, GRE 510 v, 755 q, 662 a
Guk-Ho Gil, Post-Doctoral Research Assoc., PhD 2010, North Carolina State U; computational cognitive modeling; pilot-automation interaction; haptic and virtual reality design; usability evaluation.
Naomi Glasscock, Adjunct Asst. Prof., PhD 2003, North Carolina State U; industrial ergonomics, occupational biomechanics, usability analysis.
David B. Kaber, PhD 1996, Texas Tech U; cognitive ergonomics, human-automation interaction, human-machine interface design.
Chang Soo Nam, Assoc. Prof., PhD 2003, Virginia Tech U; brain-computer interface; cognitive ergonomics; cognitive neuroscience; multi-modal virtual environments; neuroergonomics.
[Updated July 2011]