Kathryn Culig

Date of Award


Degree Name

Master of Arts



First Advisor

Dr. John Austin

Second Advisor

Dr. Debra Lindstrom-Hazel

Third Advisor

Dr. Alyce Dickinson

Access Setting

Masters Thesis-Open Access


The first purpose of this study was to examine the effects of office ergonomic assessments and resulting computer workstation adjustments on safe behavior. The adjustments were designed to reduce or eliminate barriers to performing safely, thus creating an environment that would allow participants to assume safe behaviors. The second purpose of the study was to examine the effects of a performance management (PM) package, including ergonomic information, graphic feedback, and praise, which targeted those behaviors that did not substantially change as a result of the workstation adjustments. A multiple baseline design across participants was used to assess the effects of the interventions in seven administrative offices on the campus of a midwestern university. Only two participants exhibited substantial improvements in safety performance during the ergonomic assessment phase of the study, whereas safety performance of all seven participants increased substantially during the PM package phase. Follow-up measures indicated performance maintenance for three of four participants observed. The possible behavioral functions responsible for these performance improvements are discussed in detail. Future research is suggested to further examine the effectiveness of this behavioral technology to support and enhance office ergonomic programs and to bring about lasting behavior change.

Included in

Psychology Commons