Human factors are investigated under the scientific discipline called Ergonomics for comprehending human cognition, or the brain system, in order to design information systems within human factor limitations. How are ergonomics and media psychology related?
Human physiology and cognition are obviously central issues to ergonomics and they take into account human development across the lifespan from that perspective. Media psychology also looks at the experiential aspects of human interaction with objects and environments across the lifespan. It extends the usability to the perceptions of self and self-reflection, such as, identity, self-efficacy (competence), engagement and flow (in contrast to attention), persuasion, qualitative perceptions of aesthetics, and attribution or the meaning we give to our interactions. For example:
Did this experience make me feel competent or incompetent?
Did I feel able to make a good decision as a decision-maker?
Did I feel engaged at an appropriate level–not to hard or too easy–so that I feel effective and energized?
Was the lay-out or design aesthetically pleasing contributing to my overall mood?
How do I feel about using technology? What do I think is the ‘normal’ way of doing this action?
Do I trust the experience or information?
Since humans often attribute actions of others and situational context as reflecting back on themselves, these are important considerations that impact not just whether a person is able to use something, but if they will use it or be productive and effective using it. Media psychology will look how the physical usability impacts these types of experiences, drawing on positive psychology, social cognition, learning theory, multiple intelligences, individual strengths, developmental psychology, and cognitive mapping and schemas in addition to the cognitive and biological issues that ergonomics address.