Issues : JET is a peer-reviewed, open-access scientific journal : Journal of Ergonomic Technology (JET)

Journal of Ergonomic Technology (JET)
ISSN 2432-1575


Effects of remote counseling using an embodied agent
Publish Date : 2022/01/17  Vol.22
Authors : 
Iwasaki Kazuko, Graduate School of Science and Technology, Kyoto Institute of Technology
*Kida Noriyuki, Faculty of Arts and Sciences, Kyoto Institute of Technology
Report Outline : 
Objectives: We developed a remote counseling environment showing the counselors' facial
expressions in real-time shown to clients as an embodied agent and quantitatively evaluated the length
of utterances and pauses.
Methods: We provided mock counseling using the "dog and rose role-playing technique" to ten
healthy adults as clients and one clinical psychologist as a counselor, in the following counselor's facial
expression conditions presented on a display placed in front of the clients. The conditions were voice,
agent, and real facial expressions, each condition presented for ten minutes.
Results: Pause length during a turn in the agent condition was significantly longer than in the voice
condition. Moreover, in-turn pause length (the length of pausing time after clients start uttering) in the
agent condition was significantly longer than in the voice or real facial expression conditions.
Conclusion: Clients might be able to stay silent easily and have a dialogue with themselves in the
agent condition because they have less interpersonal tension, look at the counselor's nods or facial
expressions as an image, and not feel that they must immediately respond to the counselor.
Keywords: Avatar, utterance time, counselor, client
Count : 20
Effects of original background music(BGM)on the mastication and swallow movements of elementary school lunch period
Publish Date : 2021/09/18  Vol.21
Authors : 
* Naomi Sakuma, Yokohama Municipal Sueyoshi Elementary School, Graduate School of Engineering Kanagawa Institute of Technology
Masaki Korokawa, Department of Information Media, Sound Content Media Laboratory, Kanagawa Institute of technology
Hidenobu Takao, Graduate School of Engineering Kanagawa Institute of Technology
Ryosuke Katayama, Graduate School of Engineering Kanagawa Institute of Technology
Naomi Aiba, Department of Nutrition and Life Science, Kanagawa Institute of Technology
Report Outline : 
Purpose: According to the 2015 Infant Nutrition Survey (Ministry of Health, Labour & Welfare, 2015), approximately 30% of Japanese children are unable to masticate effectively, and education to promote effective mastication movement in children with large individual differences in mastication ability is desired. The purpose of this study was to confirm whether mastication and swallowing education(MSE) using the original BGM for 10 minutes during a school lunch period consisting of a 20-minute meal time promotes masticatory and swallowing movements.
Method: The subjects were 100 children in three classes of first grade of elementary school (Kanagawa, Japan), and each class was divided into three groups: Group A) a control group with no BGM and no MSE, Group B) with BGM and no MSE, and C) with BGM and MSE, comprising of training for 3 weeks. The tempo of the original BGM was set to 120 beats per minute (BPM) based on the number of masticatory movements per minute (mastication speed); in this case, the average number was 58 times per minute. This average mastication speed was obtained from the quantitative data collected via video recording of the masticatory movement of the children who had participated in a previous study. The three groups were compared using the Kruskal-Wallis test along with the application of the Bonferroni correction to counteract the problem of multiple comparisons. The Wilcoxon signed-rank test was used for overall and quartile group comparisons.
Results: Between Groups A, B, and C post-intervention data, there was a significant increase in masticatory speed in a Group C (p<0.05). A significant increase in masticatory speed was observed in a Group C considering the pre-and-post-intervention same group data the intervention (p <0.05). In the pre-and post-quartile comparisons of each of the three groups, a significant increase in masticatory speed was observed only in a Group C, first group (low masticatory speed group) (p<0.05).
Conclusion: MSE with original background music created based on the human factor experiment conducted by Sakuma et al. reported in ‘Int J of Social Sciences, 6(2), 193-207, 2020’ improved children's masticatory speed. Especially, it was found to be particularly effective for children with slow masticatory speed, and we propose this as an educational method to promote mastication and swallowing movements during school lunch time for elementary school children.
Keywords: mastication and swallowing, background music, masticatory speed, school lunch, dietary and nutrition education
Count : 62
Underestimated active joint motions in patients with distal radius fractures:
An observational study
Publish Date : 2021/08/21  Vol.21
Authors : 
Kengo Usuki, Department of Rehabilitation, Graduate School of Health Sciences, Saitama
Prefectural University; Rehabilitation Center, Kitasato University Medical Center
Takako Suzuki, Department of Rehabilitation, Graduate School of Health Sciences, Saitama
Prefectural University
Hiroaki Ueda, Rehabilitation Center, Kitasato University Medical Center
Toshiyuki Ishioka, Department of Rehabilitation, Graduate School of Health Sciences, Saitama
Prefectural University
*Toyohiro Hamaguchi, Department of Rehabilitation, Graduate School of Health Sciences, Saitama
Prefectural University
Report Outline : 
Purpose: Accumulating evidence indicates that underestimation of movements of the fractured hands
leads to delayed recovery of motor function in patients with distal radius fractures (DRF). This study
aimed to clarify the underestimated active range of motion (ROM) of a fractured hand in patients with DRF.
Subjects and Methods: This single-center, observational study included adult female with DRF or without
fractures in the upper limbs and hands. They were divided into the following three groups: (1) DRF,
(2) healthy and unrestricted ROM, and (3) healthy and limited ROM with jigs. All participants estimated
ROM of the wrist and forearm joints at the fracture side based on that at the healthy side. Analysis of
covariance was used to determine differences among the three groups. Outcome measures were differences
between actual and self-conjectural ROM.
Results: The subjective ROM degrees of DRF patients were -20° for volar flexion, -21° for dorsal flexion, -31° for
pronation, and -24° for supination, which were lower than those of Non-fracture participants.
Significant differences between subjectively estimated and actual ROM degrees among groups in wrist joint
volar flexion (χ2 = 26.01, p < 0.01), dorsal flexion (χ2 = 24.00, p < 0.01), pronation (χ2 = 14.10, p < 0.01),
and supination (χ2 = 15.19, p < 0.01) were observed.
Conclusions: This study indicates that self-conjectural ROM of injured joints is underestimated in patients with DRF.
Our findings suggest that active movements should be encouraged in DRF patients with modest hand use.
Key words: Distal radius fracture, Rehabilitation, Self-conjecture, ADL, Range of motion
Count : 98
Evaluation of strings braided by using the Kumihimo Disk
-Comparisons between beginners and experts-
Publish Date : 2021/06/27  Vol.21
Authors : 
Akiko Kimura*, Department Advanced Fibro-science, Kyoto Institute of Technology Graduate School
Akihiko Goto, Department of Information Systems Engineering, Osaka Sangyo University
Noriyuki Kida, Department Applied Biology, Kyoto Institute of Technology
Report Outline : 
Purpose: Beginners and experts made Kumihimo (a Japanese braid) using the Kumihimo Disk by controlling the braiding movements and differences in the shape, flexibility, tactile sensation, appearance, and the comprehensive evaluation of the braided strings between beginners and experts were examined.
Methods: Beginners (N = 21) and experts (N = 18) braided the Yatsu-kongoh Z-spiral. We measured the thickness and aspect ratio of the braided strings, evaluated the flexibility and tactile sensation, and made a comprehensive evaluation based on a five-point scale.
Results: Strings braided by experts obtained higher scores for appearance and comprehensiveness compared to strings made by beginners. Braids made by experts were less flexible and had a hard texture. No correlation in evaluation scores was indicated between the thickness, flexibility, or tactile sensation of braids made by experts. Moreover, a significant correlation was not indicated between the years of experience and the appearance or comprehensive evaluation scores.
Conclusion: The results indicated that braids made by beginners tend to be thicker and have a softer texture. Variables other than the aspect ratio were not correlated with the appearance evaluation, and there was a significant correlation between comprehensive evaluation scores and the variation in thickness and tactile sensations evaluation scores of braids made by experts. The functions of the string are crucial in the comprehensive evaluation, which might have increased the correlation with tactile evaluation.
Keywords: Kumihimo Disk, the thickness of braided strings, tactile evaluation, flexibility evaluation, aspect ratio
Count : 84
3D Assessment of Facial Symmetry for Quantitative Diagnosis of Facial Paralysis
Publish Date : 2021/03/05  Vol.21
Authors : 
Ken Sudo, School of Science and Technology, Keio University
Toshiyuki Tanaka*, School of Science and Technology, Keio University
Report Outline : 
Objective: Facial paralysis is most commonly assessed using a 10-item, 40-point method, with a facial nerve grading system. It has been highlighted that while it is easy for inspectors to be subjective when using these methods, there are problems with objectivity and reproducibility. Furthermore, detailed evaluations using these methods are limited. This study aims to propose a novel objective method for evaluating facial paralysis, considering changes in the depth direction of the face.
Method: 3D shape data of the face are acquired using a Kinect sensor, and facial paralysis is evaluated using 3D shape assessment.
Results: Faces were photographed at rest and when performing facial exercises, such as inflating one cheek, tightly closing both eyes, and closing only one eye. The symmetry of facial movements was calculated using the distance between corresponding points, captured in the shape data point cloud, while at rest and during the facial exercises.
Conclusions: This study proposes a novel objective method to assess facial paralysis that considers changes in the depth direction of the face. The calculations of the symmetry of facial movements using a 3D shape data point cloud, obtained using a Kinect sensor to photograph eight varieties of facial exercises, confirmed that the proposed method objectively and quantitatively evaluates left-right motions.
Keywords: Facial paralysis, Yanagihara method, 3D quantitative evaluation method, Kinect sensor, ICP algorithm
Count : 142
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