Vision and Lighting

Vision is our most precious sense. Our eyes are in constant use every waking minute of every day. The way we use our eyes can determine how well we learn, work and perform throughout our lifetime. Over eighty percent of our learning is mediated through our eyes, indicating the important role our vision plays in our daily activities. The way we use our eyes in our daily routine has changed dramatically over the past number of years. More and more tasks are done at a close viewing distance and we are working under a variety of workplace conditions. Our visual system must adapt to these changes in order for us to function to our maximum potential.

Lighting is one of the most overlooked and under-emphasized components of our workplace. Whether working at the computer or in a warehouse arena, our field of vision needs to be free of reflections and sources of glare. Our lighting needs to prevent problems not cause them. Lighting is workplace-effective when it allows the worker to see the details of a given task easily and accurately. Comfort in lighting is a very individual concern and must be addressed on a one-to-one level; no one lighting pattern will work for every working situation. Those in charge of workplace lighting need to learn what is available to help them make the right choices for their employees. Lighting and vision are interdependent factors and must both be considered when designing a working environment for maximum efficiency.

This course is designed to give the participants awareness and knowledge of how lighting can and will affect workplace well being. It is also an interactive information session that will enlighten the participants to the area of visual function and its role in workplace productivity. By understanding the connection between comfort, health, and productivity and knowing the many options for good ergonomic workplace lighting, attendees will learn how to achieve worker-oriented lighting to insure that the task can be easily and productively accomplished. They will also learn how to become sensitive to potential visual stress that can affect all areas of performance.

The Eye and Visual System

A complete eye examination is more than just reading letters on a chart twenty feet away. It is simply one test of the function of one part of the visual system. The eyeball is just the receiver of light and the comparison of the eye to a camera is limited in understanding how we really see. Visual processing is accomplished in the brain where visual perception occurs. "Eyesight" is the process of properly focusing the incoming light to the proper area of the retina, whereas "vision" is the process of taking that information into the brain, making sense of it and reacting appropriately.

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