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Graduate assistantship in engineering fall 2007

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  • Graduate assistantship in engineering fall 2007

    Position: Graduate Research assistantship for Master’s of
    Applied Science
    starting Sept 2007 (studying in French)

    Supervising professor: Nancy Black, Ph.D., P.Eng.
    Institution: Faculté d’ingénierie (secteur
    génie industriel)
    Université de Moncton
    Moncton, NB E1A 3E9
    Contact information:

    Title of the proposed research:
    Comparative analysis of musculoskeletal disorder (MSD) risk based on
    motion analyses of common working activities of upper limb prosthesis
    users and others with upper limb disabilities.

    This research assistantship will be awarded to a student studying in
    the Master’s of Applied Science (M.Sc.A.) programme of the Faculté
    d’ingénierie focusing in the field of ergonomics and MSD
    prevention using biomechanical modelling. The research assistant will
    use the relationship between motion-based task efficacy measures, task
    perception and upper limb MSDs risk indices to compare a population at
    greater risk (upper limb prosthesis users) with a general working age
    population. The result of this comparison will help formulate
    suggestions for changes to work environments and tools (including
    prosthesis design) to minimise MSD risk.

    Applicant Requirements
    Applicants should have a Bachelor’s degree preferably in engineering
    (industrial, systems or mechanical), or an equivalent field. Competence
    in French and English, French being the language of study at Université
    de Moncton, and the VICON system being located at the English-language
    Institute of Biomedical Engineering at University of New Brunswick,

    Funding :
    Funding exists for a master’s level student for up to 2 years.
    Additional teaching assistantships may also be available.

    Summary of the proposed research program:
    Task efficacy is defined as goal-oriented effectiveness, and to date
    has been based on composite segmental mechanical energy, calculated over
    the duration of a given goal-oriented task (Black Biden & Rickards
    2005). Other measurements, both qualitative and quantitative are being
    investigated (Black et al. 2004, 2005). Since adult upper limb
    prosthesis users are three times more likely than the general working
    population to develop pain associated with MSDs (Jones and Davidson
    2001; Stocker and Neufeld 2001; Muggleton et al. 1999), this population
    comparison is particularly relevant, although movement patterns used by
    persons with other upper limb disabilities are also of interest.

    Using an 8-camera VICON MCAM system, simultaneous motions of markers on
    both arms will allow detailed modelling of upper limb movements and
    efficacy variations between upper limb prosthesis users and non-users
    during common tasks to help reduce the risk of developing MSDs.

    N.L. Black, E.N. Biden et J. Rickards, 2005. Using potential energy to
    measure work related activities for persons wearing upper limb
    prostheses. Robotica, vol. 23, pp. 319-327. N.L. Black, A. Malloy, M.A.
    Landry, M. Ross, 2005. “Using quantitative motion analysis to indicate
    upper limb postural MSD risk” Association of Canadian Ergonomists Annual
    Conference, Halifax, NS.,Aug 15-18, 2005. 4 pp. on CD-ROM. N.L. Black,
    M. Landry, and M. Ross, 2003. “Étude comparative de RULA, OREGE et
    Analyse des mouvements, methods et matériaux (AMMM) appliqué aux
    activités de la vie quotidienne”, Association of Canadian Ergonomists
    Annual Conference, October 14-17, 2003. 8 pp. on CD-ROM. (paper)
    Jones, L.E. and Davidson, J.H. 1999. Save that arm: a study of
    problems in the remaining arm of unilateral upper limb amputees.
    Prosthetics and Orthotics International, vol. 23, pp. 55-58.
    Muggleton, J.M., Allen, R., Chappell, P.H. 1999. Hand and arm injuries
    associated with repetitive manual work in industry: a review of
    disorders, risk factors and preventive measures. Ergonomics, vol. 42,
    no. 5, pp. 714-739.
    Stocker, D. and Neufeld, G. 1999. A pilot study examining repetitive
    strain injuries in people with limb loss. Conference proceedings of MEC
    '99: Narrowing the Gap, Fredericton, NB, p. 27-30.
    Nancy Black, Ph.D., ing.
    Professeure agrégée

    Département de génie mécanique
    Faculté d'ingénierie
    Université de Moncton
    Moncton, NB E1A 3E9
    téléphone (506) 858-4079
    facsimile (506) 858-4082