Health and Safety

Display Screens


Display Screen Equipment


What is display screen equipment?


Display screen equipment means a display screen, usually forming part of a computer and showing text, numbers or graphics, for instance the PC on your desk or your University laptop.

What does this require?

All workstations have to meet minimum health and safety requirements. Where a workstation is used by someone identified as a "user" further assessment is needed.

A user is someone who regularly uses display screen equipment as an essential work requirement and where normal daily use of equipment is for periods of 2 hours or more.

Users must be provided with adequate training and information about DSE use.

Training module

An on-line training module called Display Screen Equipment (for DSE Users) should be completed by all users and repeat the module at least every two years and every time a user moves to a new office or workstation. This module includes a Risk Assessment for users.

Posture poster for work station (best printed on A3 paper)

Provision of Eye Tests and Glasses

Users are entitled to an eyesight test paid for by the University.

Specsavers Opticians provides this service for the University, on production of a voucher that is issued on completion of the DSE on-line training module. The voucher is valid only at a branch of Specsavers Opticians.

The vouchers are issued by Health and Safety. We can be contacted on health.safety@canterbury.ac.uk .

If the eye test indicates a user requires glasses/lenses specifically for their DSE work, Specsavers Opticians will provide a basic pair of frames or lenses as part of the service.

Eyesight tests should be repeated every 2 years or more frequently if the user develops visual difficulties which may reasonably be considered to be caused by their work.

The DSE on-line module, quiz and assessment will need to be completed again before a further voucher is issued.

For information on how to order furniture, see the University Furniture Purchasing Policy.

The risks

The most common type of complaint associated with computer use includes pain in the arms, hands, neck and shoulders (known as work related upper limb disorders or WRULDS) as well as back pain.

Possible causes include:

Sitting for too long in one position particularly if on a badly designed chair or one that is poorly adjusted;
Insufficient breaks;
Awkward positioning of hands at keyboards;
High workloads; or
Non work factors (e.g. sports or hobbies).

There is further information available in Display Screens: The Main Risks.

What to do if you have a problem

If you experience any health problems you think are associated with workstation use, tell your supervisor or manager so that an investigation of your workstation and working arrangements can be carried out. You should do this after you have undertaken the on-line training module.

Your supervisor or manager may contact Human Resources or Health and Safety for advice and assistance at health.safety@canterbury.ac.uk