95871 - Ergonomics and Environmental Psychology

Academic Year 2023/2024

  • Docente: Marco Costa
  • Credits: 6
  • SSD: M-PSI/01
  • Language: Italian
  • Teaching Mode: Traditional lectures
  • Campus: Cesena
  • Corso: Second cycle degree programme (LM) in Applied cognitive psychology (cod. 0991)

Learning outcomes

The student will learn how the environment could impact human cognition and behavior and, the reverse, how human cognition and behavior could impact the environment.

Studying the methods of cognitive ergonomics the students will be able to analyize important factors that affect usability and error-prevention in design. The students will be able to plan interventions for increasing safety, usability, legibility in different domains.

The student will be able to analyse how changes in architectural or landscape design will affect user's cognition and behavior, and how to project interventions in the field of environmental psychology.

Course contents


- Cognitive ergonomics, methods in ergonomics, reaction times and eye movements for the assessment of cognitive load. Usability improvement in human-machine interfaces, websites, advertisement.

- Cognitive maps and improvement of wayfinding in new environments.

- Cognitive psychology applied to road safety.

Environmental Psychology

Cognitive representation of space: landmarks, edges, paths, nodes, districts.
Aesthetics of architecture and landscape.
Biophilic design and restorative effects of green spaces.
Ecological behaviors.
Place attachment.
Proxemics, interpersonal distances and territoriality.
Color perception, color measure and color use in architecture.
Lightening design.
Environmental noise and noise sensitivity.
Applied cognitive psychology for the improvement of residential, work, therapeutic and educational environments.


Costa, M (2016). Psicologia ambientale e architettonica. Milano: FrancoAngeli.

Di Nocera, F. (2010). Che cos'è l'ergonomia cognitiva. Roma: Carocci

Teaching methods

Lessons, practical exercises, analysis of scientific papers.

Assessment methods

Written examination with 10 open questions in 90 m. In case the candidates are lower than five the exam will be oral. 

Office hours

See the website of Marco Costa