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HN2013 Ergonomics, Human Factors and Patient Safety 6.0 credits

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Headings with content from the Course syllabus HN2013 (Autumn 2019–) are denoted with an asterisk ( )

Content and learning outcomes

Course contents

·         Background, development and relationship between ergonomics, human factors and patient safety.

·         Humans cognitive and physical capacities, as individuals and in work.

·         The systems view and sociotechnical systems.

·         Risks in healthcare.

·         Methods and tools for analysis, design and evaluation of work, work environment and products.

·         Human factors and ergonomics concepts and terminology.

·         Methods for risk analysis from a systems perspective.

·         Patient safety concepts and terminology.

·         Measures for increased safety in healthcare systems.

·         Read and discuss scientific papers within the area of patient safety and worker safety.

Intended learning outcomes

By the end of the course each student will be able to:

·         describe, exemplify and reflect on methods for applying knowledge about humans in the design, development and evaluation of medical technology.

·         describe and discuss different approaches in analyses of incidents in complex systems.

·         describe, exemplify and reflect on the main principles of system safety and how factors on different levels in the system can contribute to patient safety and the safety of the healthcare personnel.

·         describe, exemplify and explain how organizational issues and the work environment affects patient safety.

·         describe, exemplify and reflect on how medical technology affects the work environment and patient safety.

·         describe, exemplify and reflect on how medical technology engineers actively can contribute to improve the work environment and patient safety in healthcare.

Course disposition

No information inserted

Literature and preparations

Specific prerequisites

120 university credits (hp) In engineering or natural sciences and documented proficiency in English corresponding to English B/English 6.

Recommended prerequisites

No information inserted


No information inserted


Scientific papers presented at the course start and listed at KTH-Social

Vetenskapliga artiklar som presenteras vid kursstarten och som finns listade och tillgängliga på KTH-Social

Examination and completion

If the course is discontinued, students may request to be examined during the following two academic years.

Grading scale

A, B, C, D, E, FX, F


  • INL1 - Assignments, 2.0 credits, grading scale: P, F
  • SEM1 - Seminars, 2.0 credits, grading scale: P, F
  • TEN1 - Examination, 2.0 credits, grading scale: A, B, C, D, E, FX, F

Based on recommendation from KTH’s coordinator for disabilities, the examiner will decide how to adapt an examination for students with documented disability.

The examiner may apply another examination format when re-examining individual students.

Other requirements for final grade

Active participation in seminars 2 credits P/F

Written presentation of assignments 2 credits P/ F

Written home exam 2 credits A-F

Opportunity to complete the requirements via supplementary examination

No information inserted

Opportunity to raise an approved grade via renewed examination

No information inserted


Profile picture Mats Ericson

Ethical approach

  • All members of a group are responsible for the group's work.
  • In any assessment, every student shall honestly disclose any help received and sources used.
  • In an oral assessment, every student shall be able to present and answer questions about the entire assignment and solution.

Further information

Course web

Further information about the course can be found on the Course web at the link below. Information on the Course web will later be moved to this site.

Course web HN2013

Offered by

CBH/Biomedical Engineering and Health Systems

Main field of study

Technology and Health

Education cycle

Second cycle

Add-on studies

No information inserted


Mats Ericson (