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Title: Ergonomic suitability of educational furniture and possible health implications in a university setting
Authors: Odunaiya, Nse A. 
Owonuwa, Dolapo D 
Oguntibeju, Oluwafemi Omoniyi 
Keywords: Unsuitability;Furniture;Possible health hazards;Students;University
Issue Date: 2014
Publisher: Dovepress
Journal: Advances in Medical Education and Practice 
Abstract: Ergonomically unsuitable school furniture is frequently considered one of the major causes of severe posture problems in adulthood. This study was designed to determine the ergonomic suitability of educational furniture in the lecture theaters at the University of Ibadan to serve as a case study. Sample of convenience was used to select participants for this study. The lecture theaters were selected based on their capacity, design, and dimension. A total of 240 students (120 males and 120 females) participated in this study. The ergonomic suitability of lecture theaters was determined by analyzing the mismatches between student anthropometric dimensions and furniture dimensions, and also by analyzing the design and orientation of the lecture theaters. The data were analyzed using descriptive statistics of mean, standard deviation, range, and median. The results showed that there was a significant difference in height between males and females but no significant difference between other anthropometric variables measured. About 20% of the participants had a fitting seat height, while seat height was unsuitable for the remaining 80.4%. On the other hand, 23.3% had a fitting seat depth, while it was unsuitable for 76.7% of the participants, and 99.6% of the participants had fitting desk clearance but 0.4% found it unsuitable. A total of 25.8% of the participants had a fitting desk height, while 74.2% of the students found it unsuitable. It was concluded that the furniture in the lecture theaters at the university studied was not ergonomically suitable for the students. Hence it is recommended that further studies, including more universities across a wide spectrum of society, should be performed to determine the effect of furniture on student health, and the need to adopt the use of adjustable furniture in lecture theaters to prevent health hazards that may occur secondary to the use of unsuitable furniture.
ISSN: 1179-7258
Appears in Collections:HWSci - Journal Articles (DHET subsidised)

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