Two industrial engineers at the Augmentation and Training of Humans with Engineering in North America lab at Iowa State University have created a professional certification program for engineers seeking to amplify human performance.
The program was developed by the Society of Augmented Engineers and Scientists, based at the lab, to foster abilities needed to create tools and methods for enhancing human capabilities.
The subjects involved delve into how humans interact with their environment—not only on an individual basis, but also from a macro-ergonomic standpoint, says society co-founder and president Richard T. Stone. “We feel this new certification program doesn’t just lend credibility in the field; it helps to define the science,” Stone says.
The program covers diverse topics including psychophysics; information processing; stimulus-response; signal detection theory; and the basics of auditory, haptic, olfactory and gustatory systems. Additional topics include Gestalt theory, human decision making, ergonomics, safety, and best practices in human-centric and exoskeleton design.
“We found current certifications lacking,” says co-founder and society COO Tom Schnieders. “We felt that requiring a more stringent application process, as well as requiring continuing education, would lead to a rigorous standard of competency.” Certification is offered for augmented engineer (A.Eng) and augmented scientist (A.Sci) credentials.
The program also includes a review of the basics of static and dynamic engineering. Stone says such concepts are fundamental to understanding how to best design systems that work and are intuitive, beneficial and safe for the user. The certification program is now live on the SAES website. The registration fee is $100.