Studies in Personnel and Industrial Psychology

By Edwin A. Fleishman | Go to book overview

largely as a result of this disruption, loss of sleep resulting in fatigue. The effects of fatigue are cumulative and, to make matters worse, frequently show no obvious sign, so that a man's performance may be severely impaired without his being aware of it.

The need to respect the normal diurnal rhythm has been forcefully expressed by Pierach: "No organ or organ system is exempt from the 24- hour rhythm in its function. . . . Rhythm heals; continued activities contrary to rhythm make one weak and sick."13

For centuries now, men have studied the ebb and flow of the oceans and have used the knowledge thus gained to schedule the comings and goings of ships with a high degree of exactitude. By comparison, we still have much to learn about the tides within the human body--and what little we do know is still not being used to schedule the activities of men to best advantage. It is to be hoped that with further research and experimentation we shall ultimately be able to design shift-work schedules that will insure maximum efficiency and a minimum of personal hardship.


54. Effects of Noise Reduction in a Work Situation*

D. E. Broadbent and E. A. J. Little


INTRODUCTION

TIIE PRESENT STATE of knowledge concerning effects of noise on man has been reviewed by Broadbent.1 Roughly speaking, it is that results of laboratory experiments have now established that an effect of high intensity, meaningless, and continuous noise may appear on working efficiency in laboratory tasks which are long and require continuous attention. The effect of the noise is to increase the frequency of momentary lapses in efficiency rather than to produce decline in rate of work, gross failures of co-ordination, or similar inefficiency. Effects have never been shown with noises of less than 90 db (above the usual arbitrary level of .0002 dynes/sq, cm.). In view of the rather specific nature of the effect found in the laboratory, it remained a doubtful question

____________________
*
From Occupational Psychology, Vol. 34, 1960, pp. 133-40.

The authors wish to thank the management and staff of Kodak Limited for permission to carry out the study and publish the results.

1
D. E. Broadbent, "Effects of Noise on Behaviour," in C. M. Harris (ed.), Handbook of Noise Control ( New York: McGraw-Hill Book Co., 1957).
13
Flerach, op. cit., p. 159.

-512-

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