MSc Technology, Work and Health
Functional and well-designed work systems, organisations and environments are essential for a healthy and productive working life, and professionals with knowledge in proactive occupational safety and health management play a vital role. In this programme, students learn how to plan, design and analyse work environments, from the perspectives of sustainable work and organisational performance.
Technology, Work and Health at KTH
This master’s programme provides a deeper understanding of the interplay between human, technology and organisation, from the perspectives of sustainable work and organisational performance. As a student, you will gain knowledge and proficiency in proactive occupational safety and health (OSH) management, as well as in how to plan, design and analyse work environments. You will acquire advanced theoretical and applied knowledge of physical, cognitive and organisational ergonomics, which is needed to address issues of worker health and work sustainability in all sectors of society. Programme content can be applied in the development of organisations and processes, with a focus on improvements of work and ergonomic interventions for sustainable working life.
The programme connects closely to the UN Sustainable Development Goal #8: Decent work and economic growth. It includes one elective course, “Ergonomics in Challenge Driven Product Development”, which is given in collaboration with Botho University (Botswana) and connects to several of the UN goals.
The education in the programme is based on blended learning. Between on-campus meetings, you will study independently or in groups with course projects and e-learning activities. Our ongoing research collaborations with multiple local partners provide the opportunity to engage real worksites during field trips and project work.
During the first year, students have the opportunity to specialise within Work Environment Engineering (WEE), or Human Factors and Ergonomics (HFE).
Work Environment Engineering (WEE)
Work Environment Engineering includes coursework on the theory and practice of technical and physical work environments, as well as organisation and OSH management. This specialisation focuses on the technical work environment, from the organisation of work via change management and risk assessments to the effects of the work environment on an organisation’s operational and financial performance. After completion of your studies, you will have suitable knowledge, understanding and proficiency to work as a Work Environment Engineer.
Human Factors and Ergonomics (HFE)
Human Factors and Ergonomics includes the topics of OSH management and product development, as well as the planning and design of work environments. You will learn how to apply the theory, principles, data and methods to design work environments and works systems for human well-being and overall system performance. After completion of your studies, you will have relevant knowledge and proficiency to work as a Human Factors Specialist or Ergonomist.
This is a two-year programme (120 ECTS credits) given in English. Graduates are awarded the degree of Master of Science. The programme is given at KTH Campus and KTH Flemingsberg in Stockholm by the School of Engineering Sciences in Chemistry, Biotechnology and Health (at KTH).
In the second half of the second year, a 30-credit degree project is carried out in the student’s area of focus. The project may be done individually or in groups of two students. There is also a possibility to choose a one-year master's degree (60 credits), and instead do a 15-credit degree project, in the second half of the first year.
Find out what students from the programme think about their time at KTH.
As a graduate of this programme, you will have vast career opportunities, and employment prospects are good. Saco, Sweden's central organisation for academics, describes high demand for work environment engineers and little competition for jobs, even for new graduates. Employers of Work Environment Engineers and Human Factors Specialists can be found nationally and globally in the public, municipal, and private sectors. According to Saco, the Swedish Work Environment Authority has an expansion goal of having 300 inspectors employed by 2030 and is currently recruiting.
A master's degree in Work, Technology and Health provides you with:
- ·the capacity to actively influence and manage change and development projects within the field of technical work environments.
- knowledge of and competence with risk assessment methods, safety strategies and project management within production development.
- entrée into a dynamic, high-demand career.
- the ability to make a difference in the health and economic productivity for people, companies, and society.
This programme is designed to support professional careers as specialists within public authorities and administrations, in municipal or private OSH organisations, or consultancies. Graduates are well-prepared to work with investigations, risk assessments, change management, and planning and design of products, work environments, and work organisations. On completion of this programme, it is possible to pursue an academic research career and continue on studies leading to a PhD at KTH or other universities.
Graduates from KTH have the knowledge and tools for moving society in a more sustainable direction, as sustainable development is an integral part of all programmes. The three key sustainable development goals addressed by the master's programme in Technology, Work and Health are:
The programme overall is closely linked to SDG #8: Decent work and economic growth. Work is an integral part of people lives and an essential determinant of health. Thus, the programme also relates to SDG #3: Good health and well-being. Work-related accidents and diseases are common in all countries, and students in this programme gain a broad understanding of worker’s health: that of blue- and white-collar workers, of all genders, ages and socioeconomic classes. The programme also relates to SDG #10 Industry, innovation and infrastructure, by demonstrating how to achieve sustainable and competitive work systems with a minimum of physical, chemical and psychosocial risk factors.
Faculty and research
The programme faculty includes teachers that are employed at the Division of Ergonomics, all with a PhD within the areas of the programme. Additionally, work environment experts from outside the university contribute to teaching with substantial experience in the professional application of the study topics.
The master’s programme is closely related to the research projects of the division, and the majority of the student projects includes data collection from real workplaces. The faculty consists of several well-known researchers within the field of ergonomics, work environment risk assessments, and organisation management. The senior researchers are: