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School furniture match to students' anthropometry in the Gaza Strip

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This study aimed at comparing primary school students' anthropometry to the dimensions of school furniture and determining whether the furniture used matches the students' anthropometry. A sample of 600 male students, whose ages were between 6 and 11 years, from five primary schools in the Gaza Strip governorates participated in the study. Several students' body dimensions were measured. The dimensions measured included elbow-seat height, shoulder height, knee height, popliteal height and buttock-popliteal length. Measurements of the dimensions of the classroom furniture indicated that there was a considerable mismatch between the students' body dimensions and the classroom furniture. The mismatches in seat height, seat depth and desk height occurred for 99% of the students, while the mismatch for the back rest height was only 35%. Two design specifications were proposed in order to decrease the mismatch percentage based on the data obtained. The two proposed designs showed a considerable improvement in the match percentages as compared to the existing design. Statement of Relevance: Having identified mismatches between the dimensions of the school furniture used in primary schools in the Gaza Strip, two new design specifications are proposed and shown to improve match with the students' anthropometric dimensions. The findings of the study are also an important addition to local knowledge on school children's anthropometry.
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Keywords: anthropometry, school furniture; students

Document Type: Research Article

Affiliations: School of Industrial Engineering, Islamic University-Gaza, Gaza Strip

Publication date: March 1, 2010

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