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Syllabus for

Academic year
PPU185 - Ergonomics: Design for all
Ergonomi: design för alla
Syllabus adopted 2019-02-13 by Head of Programme (or corresponding)
Owner: MPDES
7,5 Credits
Grading: TH - Pass with distinction (5), Pass with credit (4), Pass (3), Fail
Education cycle: Second-cycle
Major subject: Industrial Design Engineering

Teaching language: English
Application code: 16118
Open for exchange students: Yes
Block schedule: D+
Maximum participants: 40

Module   Credit distribution   Examination dates
Sp1 Sp2 Sp3 Sp4 Summer course No Sp
0112 Written and oral assignments 7,5c Grading: TH   7,5c    

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Anna-Lisa Osvalder

  Go to Course Homepage


MTS 7,5 hec


General entry requirements for Master's level (second cycle)
Applicants enrolled in a programme at Chalmers where the course is included in the study programme are exempted from fulfilling the requirements above.

Specific entry requirements

English 6 (or by other approved means with the equivalent proficiency level)
Applicants enrolled in a programme at Chalmers where the course is included in the study programme are exempted from fulfilling the requirements above.

Course specific prerequisites

MMT010 Ergonomics, PPU061 Human-machine systems, or comparable courses


The purpose of the course is to develop competence about the concept Design for all.
In the course knowledge should be achieved about special user needs for elderly, children, people with decreased vision and hearing and people with physical and mental disorders.

The student should also gain deeper knowledge and understanding of the physical and cognitive variation that exist among people and how products and systems should be designed to meet various types of user needs.

Learning outcomes (after completion of the course the student should be able to)

  • Explain, understand and critically reflect on the concept Design for All from an ergomomic, social and etics perspective
  • Understand and critically reflect on inclusive and exclusive design
  • Explain, relate to and in the development of design solutions use theoretical knowledge about:
    - muscular physiology and cognition to understand and characterise how different human abilities develop and then change with age
    - human senses to understand different physical and cognitive impairments
    - anatomy, anthropometrics and biomechanics
  • Identify and predict how ergonomic design affects human conditions and performance in everyday systems, especially for elderly people, people living with disabilities and children.
  • Distinguish, compare and assess contradicting demands for ergonomic design
  • Use and reflect on computer aided analysis of posture, field of vision and reach



The course is based on theoretical lectures about physical, cognitive, antropometric and etical aspects for children, elderly and disabled people, a practical workshop when testing to be blind, sitting in a wheel-chair and being elderly, guest lectures discussing applied design projects, and a group project. 

The project concerns adaption of public spaces to people with various types of disabilities and runs throughout the whole course.


Kroemer, K (2006) Extra-ordinary Ergonomics (course book)

Uni. of Cambridge (2012) Ageing, Adaption and Accessibility: Time for the Inclusive Revolution!

The Delta Centre (2014): Trends in Universal Design, An anthology with global perspectives, theoretical aspects and real world examples.

Steinfeld, E & Maisel, J (2012). Universal Design. Creating Inclusive Environments. John Wiley & Sons, Inc. ISBN: 978-0470399132
Bohgard et. al. (2011) Work and technology on human terms. Prevent, Stockholm.
Fisk & Rogers (1997) Handbook of human factors and the older adult
Pheasant (2002) Bodyspace: Anthropometry/Ergonomics/Design of Work
Pullin, G (2009) Design meets disability. MIT Press.
Lueder, R & Berg Rice, V J (2008). Ergonomics for Children: Designing products and places for toddlers and teens. Taylor & Frances.

Examination including compulsory elements

Grades are given according to the scale: fail, 3, 4 and 5. 

The learning outcomes are assessed through: five home exam assignments based on the course books and lectures (one each week); assignments regarding the practical workshop and the computer lab, as well as a written and oral project presentation. Also there is a final assignment dealing with a reflective summary with guidelines for how you Design for All and a discussion about ethics. To pass the course students must pass all assessment tasks.

Page manager Published: Mon 28 Nov 2016.