Student Research: Ling Cui

, Occupational & Environmental Exposure Sciences (OEES) - no longer offered, 2009
Faculty Advisor: Peter W. Johnson

Performance and Physical Exposure Differences Between Children and Adults When Using Standard and Small Computer Input Devices


The early exposure to adult-size computer input devices such as computer mouse place children at risk of injury. Men, women and children are of different statures/sizes. Yet all use the same mouse. The aim of this study was to determine whether reducing the mouse size and/or mouse button activation forces would have an effect on the performance, posture or muscle activity levels when operated by different statured users. Sixteen children (6-8 years old), 8 adult females and 8 adult males (18-65 years old) will participate in the study. Six computer mice will be evaluated by each subject: four standard sized mice each with different button activation forces (0.45, 0.65, 0.85 and 1.05 Newtons), and a medium sized compact mouse and a subcompact mouse with 0.65 Newton button activation force. Performance measures will examine both accuracy and time to complete the tasks with each mouse. Electrogoniometer and Electromyography will assess the posture and muscle load. And subjective ratings will be collected to evaluate subjective preferences. Preliminary results on a subset of subjects are presented.