Last semester in my human factors class, my professor had previously worked at an airline company where she worked a variety of projects. We did multiple case studies on crash data. I learned the importance of runway traffic, seating positions, etc. It was super interesting and sounded like a fun career path.
Human Factor Engineers design objects, facilities and environments to optimize overall system performance and human well-being by investigating and analyzing charateristics of human behavior as well as it relation to technology.
Human factors engineering sounds really intimidating but I think it just comes down to how easy you can make others’ lives. I am an undergraduate research assistant in the Werner Lab and the research that I am currently a part of involves understanding the different variables in a home setting that affect healthcare delivery to a child with medical complexity. We use the SEIPS 2.0 model to perform qualitative analysis to understand trends in this healthcare setting that needs to be addressed. However, this is just one of the MANY systems that exist in the world. There are workplace settings, hospital settings, aviation settings, etc. and our goal is to understand how to make the users’ life easier. HFE is an extremely specialized field but there are avenues for opportunities(user experience, product design..)