Appendix A: Display Screen Equipment and Work Station Checklist

Record of Assessment

Workstation location:
Name of User:
Assessment completed by:
Assessment checked by:
Date of Assessment:
Any further action needed? Yes / No Please specify action required.
Follow up action completed on:

Assessment Checklist

Risk Factor Y N Things to consider Action to take
Display Screens
Are the characters clear and readable?

Make sure the screen is clean and cleaning materials are made available.

Check that text and background colours work well together

Is the text size comfortable to read? Software settings may need adjusting to change text size.
Is the image stable, i.e., free of flicker? Try using different screen colours to reduce flicker, e.g., darker background and lighter text, increase the refresh rate of monitor setting. If the problem persists, contact your IT support.
Is the screen’s specification suitable for its intended use? For example, intensive graphic work or work requiring fine attention to small details may require large display screens.
Are the brightness and /or contrast adjustable? Separate adjustment controls are not essential, provided the user can read the screen easily
Does the screen swivel and tilt?

Swivel and tilt need not be built-in; you can add a swivel and tilt mechanism. However, you may need to replace the screen if:

Swivel/tilt is absent or unsatisfactory.

Work is intensive.

The user has problems getting the screen to a comfortable position.

The height of the screen should be roughly at eye level. A monitor stand may be required. If using an LCD screen, ensure it is adjustable in height, alternatively use a monitor stand.

Is the screen free from glare and reflections? Find the source of the reflections. You might need to move the screen or even the desk and/or shield the screen from the source of the reflections. Screens that use dark characters on a light background are less prone to glare and reflections.
Is the user facing the screen Position the screen in front of the user, to avoid any twisting.
Are adjustable window coverings provided and in adequate condition? Check that curtains/blinds are in good working order. If not, report to Estates and Buildings. If these measures do not work, consider anti-glare screen filters as a last resort and seek specialist help.
Is the keyboard separate from the screen? This is a requirement unless the task makes it impracticable (e.g., where there is a need to use a portable computer).
Does the keyboard tilt? Tilt need not be built-in
Is it possible to find a comfortable keying position?

Try pushing the display screen further back to create more room for the keyboard, hands and wrists.

Keep elbows close to the body, do not overstretch the arms.

Users of thick raised keyboards may need a wrist rest.

Users may find the use of a compact mini-keyboard more comfortable.

Does the user have a good keyboard technique? Training can be used to prevent: – hands bent up at wrist – hitting the keys too hard – overstretching the fingers
Are the characters on the keys easily readable?

Keyboards should be kept clean.

If characters still cannot be read, the keyboard may need modifying or replacing.

Use a keyboard with a matt finish to reduce glare and/or reflection.

Mouse, trackball etc.
Is the device suitable for the tasks it is used for?

If the user is having problems, try a different device.

The mouse and trackball are general-purpose devices suitable for many tasks, and available in a variety of shapes and sizes.

Alternative devices such as touch screens may be better for some tasks (but can be worse for others).

Check the device has been set to suit the user (for right or left-hand user).

Is the device positioned close to the user?

Most devices are best placed as close as possible e.g., right beside the keyboard.

Training may be needed to

prevent arm overreaching.

Tell users not to leave their hand on the device when it is not being used.

Encourage a relaxed arm and straight wrist.

A compact keyboard will help the user to avoid overreaching.

Is there support for the device user’s wrist and forearm?

Support can be gained from, for example, the desk surface. If not, a separate supporting device (gel filled) may help.

The user should be able to find a comfortable working position with the device.

Does the device work smoothly at a speed that suits the user?

Check if cleaning is required (e.g., of mouse ball and rollers). Check the work surface is suitable.

A mouse mat may be needed.

Can the user easily adjust software settings for the speed and accuracy of the pointer? Users may need training in how to adjust device settings.
Is the software suitable for the task?

Software should help the user carry out the task, minimise stress and be user-friendly.

Check users have had appropriate training in using the software. Software should respond quickly and clearly to user input, with adequate feedback, such as clear messages.

Is the work surface large enough for all the necessary equipment, papers etc.?

Create more room by moving printer, reference materials etc. elsewhere. Use multilevel trays for papers/documents.

If necessary, consider providing new power and telecom sockets, so equipment can be moved. There should be some scope for flexible rearrangement

Can the user comfortably reach all the equipment and papers they need to use?

Rearrange equipment, papers etc. to bring frequently used things within easy reach.

A document holder may be needed, positioned to minimise uncomfortable head and eye movements.

Are the surfaces free from glare and reflection? Consider mats or blotters to reduce reflections or glare
Is the chair stable & suitable for the user? Does the chair have a working: – seat back height and tilt adjustment? – Seat height adjustment? – Swivel mechanism? – Castors or glides? The chair may need repairing or replacing if the user is uncomfortable, or the adjustment mechanisms are faulty.
Is the chair adjusted correctly?

The user must be familiar with the chair adjustments.

Adjust the chair height to sit with elbows at approx. 90º & 2cm above the desk when touching the G & H keys.

The user should be able to carry out their work sitting comfortably. Consider training the user on how to adopt suitable postures while working. The arms of chairs can stop the user from getting close enough to use the equipment comfortably.

Consider chairs without armrests or adjustable armrests. Move any obstructions from under the desk.

Is the lower back supported by the chair’s backrest? The user should have a straight back, supported by the chair, with relaxed shoulders
Are forearms horizontal and eyes at roughly the same height as the top of the screen? Adjust the chair height to get the user’s arms in the right position; adjust the monitor height/tilt if necessary
Is there enough room to change position and vary movement?

Space is needed to move and stretch.

Consider reorganising the office layout and check for obstructions. Cables should be tidy and not a trip or snag hazard.

Is the lighting suitable, e.g., not too bright or too dim to work comfortably? Users should be able to control light levels, e.g., by adjusting window blinds or light switches. Consider shading or repositioning light sources or providing local lighting, e.g., desk lamps (but make sure lights do not cause glare by reflecting off walls or other surfaces).
Does the air feel comfortable?

VDUs and other equipment may dry the air.

Green plants may help to increase moisture levels in the air. Circulate fresh air if possible.


Are levels of heat comfortable? Can heating be better controlled? More ventilation or air-conditioning may be required if there is a lot of electronic equipment in the room. or can the user be moved away from the heat source
Are levels of noise comfortable? Consider moving sources of noise, e.g., printers, away from the user. If not, consider soundproofing
Have you carried out a user check (visual inspection) of the visually accessible parts of the equipment and its cable, plug and extension cable? Carry out a user check when the equipment has been relocated. Any faults or significant wear and tear must be reported and repaired as soon as possible (contact your local computing support) Do not use any equipment if defective. Remove from operation and label ‘DO NOT USE – EQUIPMENT FAULTY’.
Further Questions
Is a portable computer frequently used? If so, reduce its use to a minimum. Alternatively, have a docking station (separate keyboard, separate screen or screen elevated, separate mouse or tracking device).
Has the checklist covered all the problems the user may have working with the DSE?
Has the user been advised of their entitlement to eyesight testing, and advised to contact the Occupational Health Unit or the Health and Safety Office or their optician to arrange appropriate eyesight testing?
Does the user take regular breaks working away from the DSE?
Has the user read the display screen equipment policy?

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