Professor Chris Baber, Head of School of EESE, was awarded the Sir Frederic Bartlett medal by the Institute of Ergonomics and Human Factors (IEHF) in April of this year. The award was presented by the President of the IEHF, Dr. Richard Graveling, at the Annual Conference which was held in Cambridge. This location was particularly fitting as the Medal is named after Sir Frederic Bartlett FRS who was the first Professor of Experimental Psychology at the University of Cambridge from 1931 to 1951, and set up its Medical Research Council’s Applied Psychology Unit.

The IEHF awards the Sir Frederic Bartlett Medal for major contributions to ergonomics. Professor Baber received it for contributions to ergonomics teaching and the development of theory and practical application. The citation noted that his work represents a substantial contribution to ergonomics knowledge over the past 20 years, particularly in the areas of human-computer interaction.

Ergonomics is a broad science that looks into equipment design and workers’ relationship with their environment, amongst other things. The word ergonomics is derived from the Greek words ergon and nomoi, meaning ‘work’ and ‘natural laws’ respectively. With advances in technologies comes a new focus in human-computer interaction and cognitive abilities, in which area Professor Baber is a leading voice. Much of his work involves the design and implementation of wearable computers and sensor-based interaction.