Evaluation of three methodologies for assessing work activity during computer\par use.\par

  • Homan M
  • Armstrong T
  • 1

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Abstract

The overall goal of this study was to evaluate three separate methodologies for\par gathering work activity information among computer users. These methodologies\par included worker self-report, work sampling, and activity monitoring. A repeated\par measures design was employed whereby data were collected simultaneously on each\par subject (n = 51) across three consecutive workdays. Exposure information gathered\par included keying time, mouse usage, and time spent performing various work tasks\par (i.e., writing, proofreading, handling documents). Subjects were recruited to\par represent a wide range of keyboard activity and mouse usage. The study found that\par worker self-reports overestimated actual keyboard usage by a factor of\par approximately 1.5 for workers using the keyboard an average of 4 hours per day to\par a factor of 4 for workers using the keyboard an average of 30 min per day. On\par average, there was an approximate twofold difference between worker self-reported\par keying time and that obtained via activity monitoring and work sampling. This\par trend was similar with regard to time spent using the computer mouse. Worker\par self-reported mouse usage was approximately twofold higher than that obtained via\par activity monitoring or work sampling. Self-reported exposure information not only\par resulted in different estimates, but showed greater variance compared with the\par other methodologies. The results of this study suggest that the use of worker\par self-reported exposure information on keying time and mouse usage may not\par represent an accurate account of time spent performing these tasks. In the\par context of epidemiological studies work sampling and/or activity monitoring would\par be more suitable methodologies for obtaining such information.\par

Author-supplied keywords

  • Adult
  • Computers
  • Data Collection/methods
  • Female
  • Human Engineering
  • Humans
  • Job Description
  • Male
  • Occupational Exposure
  • Reproducibility of Results
  • Task Performance and Analysis
  • Truth Disclosure
  • User-Computer Interface
  • Workplace
  • par

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Authors

  • M M par Homan

  • T J par Armstrong

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