Ergonomics is about ’fit’: the fit between people, the things they do, the objects they use and the environments they work, travel and play in. If good fit is achieved, the stresses on people are reduced. They are more comfortable, they can do things more quickly and easily, and they make fewer mistakes."
Ergonomics Society (Europe)
"Ergonomics (or human factors) is the scientific discipline concerned with the understanding of interactions among humans and other elements of a system, and the profession that applies theory, principles, data and methods to design in order to optimize human well-being and overall system performance."
"Ergonomists contribute to the design and evaluation of tasks, jobs, products, environments and systems in order to make them compatible with the needs, abilities and limitations of people."
"Derived from the Greek ergon (work) and nomos (laws) to denote the science of work, ergonomics is a systems-oriented discipline which now extends across all aspects of human activity."
Domains of specialization within the discipline of ergonomics are broadly the following;
Physical ergonomics is concerned with human anatomical, anthropometric, physiological and biomechanical characteristics as they relate to physical activity.
Cognitive ergonomics is concerned with mental processes, such as perception, memory, reasoning, and motor response, as they affect interactions among humans and other elements of a system.
Organizational ergonomics is concerned with the optimization of sociotechnical systems, including their organizational structures, policies and processes.
International Ergonomics Association (IEA)
The Human Factors & Ergonomics Society adopted the definition of ergonomics used by the International Ergonomics Association, above.
Human Factors & Ergonomics Society (HFES)
"Making sure that the machinery, tools, and furniture associated with a job fit the workers who do that job is a field of engineering called ergonomics, or human engineering. A properly designed workplace can reduce worker fatigue and increase safety on the job".
"An engineering science concerned with the physical and psychological relationship between machines and people who use them. The ergonomist assesses these interactions and attempts to improve efficiency and reduce strain and discomfort. Applications include the design of automobile interiors and the placement of machine switches and gauges."
"Ergonomics is the science of adapting products and processes to human characteristics and capabilities in order to improve well-being and optimize productivity."
Lueder (Ed.) Ergonomics Payoff.
er·go·nom·ics (ûr·go·nom·iks) n. 1. Used with a sing. verb 2. The applied science of equipment design, as for the workplace, intended to maximize productivity by reducing operator fatigue and discomfort. Also called Biotechnology. Also called Human Engineering. 3. Used with a pl. verb Design factors, as for the workplace, intended to maximize productivity by minimizing operator fatigue and discomfort: The ergonomics of the new office were felt to be optimal. [Greek ergon, work; See verb – in Indo-European Roots.] er·go·nom·ic or er·go·no·met·ric adj. Er·go·nom·i·cal·ly adv. er·gon·o·mist (ûr·gon·om·ist) n.