Date of Graduation


Document Type


Degree Type



Statler College of Engineering and Mineral Resources


Industrial and Managements Systems Engineering

Committee Chair

Ashish D. Nimbarte.


The design and functionality of the computer or video display unit (VDU) workstation has continuously evolved since its advent. One of the recent developments in the design of VDU workstations that may affect working postures of the head and neck and the activity of corresponding musculature is the use of dual screen monitors. VDU workstations with dual screen monitors are becoming increasing common at offices, libraries, and many other workplaces. A few studies show that user performance and efficiency is positively affected by the use of dual screen monitors, however, currently effect of dual screen monitors on the overall behavior of the neck and shoulder region is unknown. Therefore, this study was aimed at understanding the effect of use of dual screen monitors VDU workstation on the biomechanical behavior of the neck and shoulder musculature. A laboratory study was performed to compare the effect of dual and single screen VDU workstation on the 3D head and neck postures and neck muscles activities. Nine healthy participants were recruited for this study. Each participant performed three types of tasks: (1) reading for ten minutes; (2) typing for five minutes; and (3) search and find tasks for ten minutes using single and dual screen monitors. The results of the present study have showed that user adopted asymmetrical, more rotated, head and neck postures while working with dual screen monitors. Working postures and muscle activity pattern with respect to the monitor layout were found to depend on the type of the task. Typing task elicited higher postural and muscle activity load followed by search and find, and reading tasks. Independent of the tasks, right sternocleidomastoid muscle showed higher activity levels for dual screen layout. This increased activity level may be due to increased head rotation associated with the dual screen monitors.