Contacts

Alison Bell

Alison Bell

Senior Lecturer
Work Health & Safety Academic Program

Certified Professional Ergonomist
PhD, University of Wollongong

Email: abell@uow.edu.au
Phone: +61 2 42 21 4095

UOW Scholars Profile - Alison Bell

Qualifications

  • PhD
  • Master of Science (Research), University of Wollongong, 2008
  • Certificate IV in Workplace Assessment and Training (upgraded), 2008
  • Graduate Certificate in Health Science (Education), University of Sydney, 2005
  • Post Graduate Diploma of Safety Science, University of New South Wales, 1990
  • Bachelor of Applied Science (Occupational Therapy), Cumberland College of Health Sciences (now University of Sydney), 1982

 

Background

Alison Bell is an Occupational Therapist and Certified Professional Ergonomist who joined the UOW academic staff after a 20 year career – initially working in clinical settings in Australia and the UK.  She moved into industry and worked in injury prevention, training and occupational rehabilitation across a variety of settings, primarily mining and heavy manufacturing sectors. She has a passion for lifelong learning and the transformative power of education and feels privileged to be a part of her student’s growth as people and professionals as they complete their studies at UOW.   

Alison’s research interests are in the area of physical ergonomics and the interface of people with their environment and products within that environment. Her current PhD research examines the ‘openability’ of hospital food and beverage packaging by the older consumer – to ultimately influence the design of the packaging for ease of opening and therefore nutritional intake. Previous research has included upper limb musculoskeletal disorders among cleaning workers; the outcomes of this research has been used to inform codes of practice in the cleaning industry in Australia through the ‘Clean Start Agreement’ and an invitation to join the Commonwealth Cleaning Consultative Group on Fair Work Principles for Cleaning Workers (2010).

 

Awards

  • Graduate Scholar Award, International Conference on Food Studies, 2014
  • Vice Chancellor’s award for Outstanding Contribution to Teaching and Learning, University of Wollongong, 2009
  • National Finalist, Lecturer of the Year, 2009
  • Peer Recognition Award, Australian College of Educators, 2008
  • Faculty Scholar, 2008
  • Best HBS Student Presentation, 2006 HDR Conference

 

Teaching and Coordinating

  • HAS 979 Ergonomic Essentials
  • HAS 871 WHS Risk Management
  • HAS 973 Occupational Health & Safety Systems

 

Research Interests

Commissioned Research Grants

  • 2009: Developing best practice OHS guidance to the light and recreational boating industry. (Boating Industry of Australia, NSW Branch), WorkCover Assist.  $98,000 
  • 2007: Reducing armed robbery in pharmacies. (Pharmacy Guild of NSW), WorkCover Assist.  $110,000 
  • 2005: Assessment of the repetitive manual tasks of cleaning workers.  (Cleaning Industry Steering Committee), WorkCover Assist Grant  $125,840 

 

External Research Grants

  • 2012: Coal Services Grant. Improving footwear for underground coal miners.  $193,000
  • 2010: UOW Community Partnerships Grant with BHP Billiton. Improving shoe fit and function for use by underground coal miners.  $19, 851

 

Internal Research Grants

  • 2014: Global Challenges Grant  Living Well Longer theme: ‘Openability’ of hospital food & beverage packaging for older people $3,425
  • 2012: UOW ECRG. Lying in a hospital bed or sitting in a chair is there a difference in hand function (dexterity and strength) and how does this affect the ‘openability’ of hospital food and beverage packaging by the over 65 year old?  $3,000
  • 2009: UOW ECRG. Opening the discussion; interpreting stakeholders views on hospital food and beverage packaging. $2,495
  • 2008: UOW ECRG. Forces required by hospital patients to open food and beverage packaging.  $2,917

 

Publications

  1. Bell, A., (2014). Open Sesame: exploring the ‘usability’ of hospital food and beverage packaging for the over 65s.  PhD Snapshot Presentation: Human Factors and Ergonomics Society Annual Conference, November 17-19, Adelaide: Australia. 
  2. Bell, A., Walton, K., Chevis, J., Yoxall, A. (2014). Exploring ‘Openability’ of Hospital Food & Beverage Packaging by ‘Well Elderly’.  International Conference on Food Studies. October 20-21, Prato: Italy 
  3. Yoxall, A; Bell, A.  If at first you don't succeed: Older consumers & hospital food & beverage packaging – a matter of try, try and try again! , International Association of Packaging Institutes 2014 Conference Proceedings (p. 80). June 16-18, Melbourne: Australia. 
  4. Collier, B. R., Holland, L., McGhee, D., Sampson, J. A., Bell, A., Stapley, P. J. & Groeller, H. (2014). Precision markedly attenuates repetitive lift capacity. Ergonomics: an international journal of research and practice in human factors and ergonomics, 57 (9), 1427-1439. 
  5. Rowson, J., Sangrar, A., Rodriguez-Falcon, E., Bell, A. F., Walton, K. A., Yoxall, A. & Kamat, S. (2014). Rating accessibility of packaging: a medical packaging example. Packaging Technology and Science, 27 (7), 577-589. 
  6. Walton, K., Douglas, A., Brown, M., Kennedy, M., Groeller, H., Flood, V., Bell, A., Cusick, A. & Palmer, G. (2013). Developing a multidisciplinary SIM Laboratory within the School of Health Sciences. In J. Van Dijk (Eds.), SimHealth 2013 Conference Proceedings (pp. 50-50). Australia: Simulation Australia. 
  7. Westblade, N., Bell, A., Walton, K., Chevis, J. & Morson, K. (2013). Does grip and pinch strength affect the openability of packages in the over 65 year old? A comparison between 2 postures. Nutrition and Dietetics, 70 (S1), 45-45. 
  8. Morson, K., Bell, A. & Walton, K. (2013). Influences on openability of hospital food and beverage packaging by the elderly: the role of dexterity and posture. Nutrition and Dietetics, 70 (S1), 44-44. 
  9. Bell, A., Chevis, J., Westblade, N., Morson, K. & Walton, K. (2013). Lying down on the job- does posture affect grip strength and opening hospital food and beverage packaging?  Australian Occupational Therapy Journal, 60 (Suppl. S1), 84-85. 
  10. Rowson, J., Sangrar, A., Rodriguez-Falcon, E., Bell, A. F., Walton, K. A., Yoxall, A. & Kamat, S. (2013). Rating accessibility of packaging: a medical packaging example. Packaging Technology and Science, Online First. 
  11. Parrish, D., Walton, K., Stoyles, G., Andersen, P., Bell, A., Kampers, D. & Rush, L. (2012). Identifying student engagement challenges in the Faculty of Health and Behavioural Sciences. HERDSA 2012 Australia: HERDSA Inc. 
  12. Bell, A. F, Walton, K., Chevis, J.S., Davies, K., Manson, C., Wypych, A., Yoxall, A., Kirkby, J.  (2013), ‘Accessing packaged food and beverages in hospital.  Exploring experiences of patients and staff,’ Appetite, vol. 60, pp. 231-238. 
  13. Bell, A., (2012), ‘Open Sesame: Exploring the ‘openability of hospital food and beverage packaging for the over 65s.’ Human Factors & Ergonomics Society of Australia Annual Conference, 2012, Canberra. 
  14. Weigall, F., Bell, A., Mernagh, A. (2012), ‘Developing Workplace Health and Safety Guidance for the Recreational & Light Commercial Boating Industries,’  NSW Safety Show, 23-25 October 2012, Sydney 
  15. Bell, A. F. & Steele, J. R. 2012, 'Risk of musculoskeletal injury among cleaners during vacuuming', Ergonomics, vol. 55, no. 2, pp. 237-247. 
  16. Bell, A. (2010), 'Ergonomics: more than seating', 28th Annual Conference & Exhibition of the Australian Institute of Occupational Hygienists Inc (AIOH), Australian Institute of Occupational Hygienists Inc, pp. 14-14. 
  17. Bell, A. (2009) How to identify, develop and measure competencies for an Occupational Hygienist.  Australian Institute of Occupational Hygienists Annual Conference, December 2009, Canberra 
  18. Bell, A. (2009) Cleaning workers, vacuum cleaning and work-related upper limb musculoskeletal risk; or why vacuuming sucks!  Human Factors and Ergonomics Society of Australia Annual Conference, November 2009, Melbourne 
  19. Walton, K. L., Manson, C., Davies, K., Wypych, A., Chevis, J., Bell, A. F. & Williams, P. (2009) Problematic food and beverage packaging in hospitals. In Dietitians Association of Australia 27th National Conference, 28-30 May, Darwin. Nutrition and Dietetics, 66 (s1), A7-A7. 
  20. Bell, A. (2008) Assessment of Professional Competence of Occupational Hygienists in Higher Education courses. Australian Learning and Teaching Roundtable September 2008, Sydney 
  21. Bell, A. (2007) Use of observational assessment tools to assess the risk of upper limb work related musculoskeletal disorders (WRMSDs). Hong Kong Occupational Therapy Association Conference June 2007, Hong Kong 
  22. Bell, A. F. & Weigall, F. (2006) Risk Factors for Armed Hold Ups in Pharmacy, Safety Institute of Australia (NSW Division) Inc, Safety Conference October 2006, Sydney 
  23. Weigall F, Bell A & Simpson K (2006) Psychosocial risk factors for upper limb musculoskeletal disorders – case studies from industry.  Proceedings from the International Ergonomics Association Triennial Conference July 2006, Maastricht: Netherlands 
  24. Bell A, Simpson K & Weigall F (2006) Physical risk factors for upper limb musculoskeletal disorders - case studies from industry.  Proceedings from the International Ergonomics Association Triennial Conference July 2006, Maastricht: Netherlands 
  25. Weigall F, Bell A & Simpson K (2006) Influencing population health – the role of allied health professionals in raising the standards in occupational health.  Proceedings from the 14th Congress of the World Federation of Occupational Therapists July 2006, Sydney 
  26. Weigall F & Bell A (2006) Our changing workforce – the impact on the assessment and management of work-related musculoskeletal disorders. Proceedings from the 14th Congress of the World Federation of Occupational Therapists July 2006, Sydney 
  27. Bell A, Simpson K & Weigall F (2006) A review of tools used to assess the physical risk factors that contribute to upper limb work related musculoskeletal disorders.  Proceedings from the 14th Congress of the World Federation of Occupational Therapists July 2006, Sydney 
  28. Weigall F & Bell A (2006) A review of tools used to assess the work organisation/psychosocial risk factors that contribute to upper limb work related musculoskeletal disorders.  Proceedings from the 14th Congress of the World Federation of Occupational Therapists July 2006, Sydney 
  29. Weigall F, Simpson K & Bell A (2006) An assessment of the repetitive manual tasks of cleaners.  Gosford NSW: WorkCover NSW 
  30. Bell (2003) Occupational Therapists: A Key Role in Injury Management.  Proceedings of the  OT Australia NSW Conference, Sydney 
Last reviewed: 9 November, 2017