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Education: integrating PTD into undergraduate curricula.

Popov G; Blunt LA; McGlothlin J; Young-Corbett D; Zey JN; Heckel P
Prof Saf 2013 Mar; 58(3):44-49
It has been said, "Good design is obvious. Great design is transparent ' (Joe Sparano, Oxide Design Co.). Likewise, article coauthor James Mc- Glothlin says: PTD need not be apparent, nor obtrusive, nor appear as an add-on, if so, it will not last. For something to be designed that is inherently safe and healthy, pleasing to the eye, has ergonomic features that make it easy to use and/or operate, is well built to withstand the day-to-day demands of its form and function and is affordable, then anything that has PTD as its foundation is truly a creation that will blossom from idea to icon. NIOSH has engaged the nation through its PTD initiative, from industry to labor to professional associations (such as ABET) to academia. Particularly, NIOSH has captured the attention of academia because it has recognized the need to plant the seeds of PTD in the minds of today's students and faculty who will build tomorrow's world. The lists of programs and institutions teaching PTD and conducting related research in this article is not exhaustive. Hundreds of institutions may be conducting similar work. What is important is that the universities sustain this initiative and make it relevant for future engineers and safety professionals. Having qualified faculty members is a key component to achieving this goal. Faculty expertise will vary by program and should include P.E.s in the engineering programs and CSPs and CIHs in the multidisciplinary safety-based programs. More than ever, undergraduate education must create a strong value proposition for students. As young adults transition from high school to college to career, educators must close the skills gap so that the students develop the knowledge they need not only to be competitive in the job market, but also to display necessary technical skills from the day they graduate. Education's challenge is to extend far beyond the traditional lecture hall to a place where students are actively engaged and immersed in the learning process.
Workers; Work-environment; Worker-health; Humans; Men; Women; Preventive-medicine; Hazards; Risk-factors; Safety-measures; Safety-practices; Safety-education
Publication Date
Document Type
Journal Article
Funding Type
Cooperative Agreement
Fiscal Year
Identifying No.
Cooperative-Agreement-Number-U60-OH-009761; B20130321
Issue of Publication
NIOSH Division
Priority Area
Construction; Manufacturing
Source Name
Professional Safety
Performing Organization
Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University
Page last reviewed: March 3, 2021
Content source: National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health Education and Information Division