2023 Cognitive Ergonomics

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Academic unit or major
Graduate major in Industrial Engineering and Economics
Aoki Hirotaka 
Class Format
Lecture    (Face-to-face)
Media-enhanced courses
Day/Period(Room No.)
Mon3-4(W9-414)  Thr3-4(W9-414)  
Course number
Academic year
Offered quarter
Syllabus updated
Lecture notes updated
Language used
Access Index

Course description and aims

This course aims at obtaining knowledge and basic skills about the discipline called cognitive ergonomics, their approaches and applications to actual design of human-machine systems and work systems. Among various human factors and functions that ergonomics try to solve, this class focuses on cognitive aspects of human attitudes, behaviours and actions, and explores applications of their cognitive ergonomic approaches, methods and techniques to design and evaluation of human-machine systems and human behaviour-related issues. Contents covered in this class are largely divided into four areas, for which some case studies are included: (1) Introduction to human factors and ergonomics, (2) Human-centred design, (3) Usability, and (4) Case study. In this class, in addition to lectures, a group assignment (+ presentation and discussion) will be made concerning a specific topic for better understanding of cognitive ergonomic concepts and approaches. Simple questions – just one-page answer required – will be also given every week in the end of lecture for the same purpose.

Student learning outcomes

By the end of this course, students will be able to explain Human Factors and Ergonomics thinking, approache, methods/techniques, and their applications to real-world issues, e.g., design of human-machine systems based on human cognitive aspects.


Basics of Human Factors and Ergonomics, human cognitive mechanism, human centred design, usability

Competencies that will be developed

Specialist skills Intercultural skills Communication skills Critical thinking skills Practical and/or problem-solving skills

Class flow

In each class, fundamentals of related topics, approaches, methods and techniques will be lectured. Small quiz and discussion related to issues or topics will be performed for their better understandig. In addition, group work will be made twice to enhance students' appication of ergonomic skills and knowledge to their own problems.

Course schedule/Required learning

  Course schedule Required learning
Class 1 Introduction to Human Factors and Ergonomics Understand overviews of HFE, its principles and basics.
Class 2 Approaches to HFE Issues Explain the typical methods/approaches and thinking processes used in HFE.
Class 3 Basics of Human Characteristics: Physical Factors Explain the basics of human physical factors.
Class 4 Basics of Human Characteristics: Perceptual and Cognitive Factors Explain the basics of human cognitive factors.
Class 5 Basics of Human-Machine Systems Explain application domains of human-machine sysmtes research and some example cases.
Class 6 Human Centred Design Approaches to Systems/Products Explain user-centred design processes and methods included in the processes, roughly.
Class 7 Basics of Usability I Explain two types of definition of usability and typical methodologies included in usability engineering.
Class 8 Basics of Usability II Explain practical methods for usability design/evaluation, roughly.
Class 9 Design and Evaluation of Usability Explain practical methods for usability design/evaluation, roughly.
Class 10 Eye-Tracking Applications to Cognitive Ergonomic Issues Explain eye tracking for cognitive task analysis and its applications.
Class 11 Applications to Issues in Marketing Explain applications in marketing domain.
Class 12 Applications to Issues in Medicine Explain applications in medical domain.
Class 13 Groupwork Gain understandings of the problem identification processes based on cognitive ergonomics approach.
Class 14 Presentation Gain understandings of the problem identification processes based on cognitive ergonomics approach.

Out-of-Class Study Time (Preparation and Review)

To enhance effective learning, students are encouraged to spend approximately 100 minutes preparing for class and another 100 minutes reviewing class content afterwards (including assignments) for each class.
They should do so by referring to textbooks and other course material.


None required.

Reference books, course materials, etc.

Instruction manuals and course materials are provided during class.

Assessment criteria and methods

Students' knowledge of topics in the lecture, and their ability to apply them to groupworks will be assessed. Short quiz/discussion 50%, groupwork 50%. Full attendance are compulsory.

Related courses

  • Healthcare Quality and Safety
  • IEE.C202 : Modern Industrial Engineering I
  • Industrial Engineering in Modern Society II
  • IEE.C302 : Quality Management

Prerequisites (i.e., required knowledge, skills, courses, etc.)

No prerequisites.

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