university of essex

Display Screen Equipment (DSE) Safety

Why DSE assessment is important

What DSE users need to do

Employees need to complete the University’s online computer safety course. It will take you about 30 minutes to complete the course and the quiz at the end. The course is self-enrollable at; you will need an enrolment key word which you can obtain from this link: alternatively you can contact your DSE Facilitator or Departmental Administrator. You can also send an email to

Once you have done the course you need to complete a DSE Self Assessment form. This can be accessed via the course or by following the link below. Once you have done the assessment pass it to your DSE Facilitator (see link below).

Links to:
DSE Self Assessment form (doc) (updated April 2013)
Safe use of DSE guidance sheet (pdf)

How to setup your computer workstation video

Using a Computer Leaflet (pdf)

What about students?

There is no requirement in law for students to complete a DSE assessment. However they should still follow the good practice outlined in the Safe Use of DSE guidance sheet and the Using a Computer leaflet to avoid aches and pains. Guidance for pregnant staff and students can be found further down this page.

What are DSE Facilitators?

DSE Facilitators are employees who have been appointed by your Department / Section to help ensure that any actions arising from your DSE Self Assessment are taken. See DSE Roles and Responsibilities below for more details of what they do.

The HSAS runs DSE Facilitator courses, details of which can be found by following the Induction and Training link on the left of this page. If you need to attend a course, contact HSAS (e-mail safety or tel: 2944). Further information about the course content can be found by following the Induction and Training link.

Links to
DSE Facilitators
DSE roles and responsibilities (pdf)
DSE Policy: Working with Display Screen Equipment (pdf)

Common problems

Through visiting employee workstations and discussing their assessments with them, we have found these to be the most common problems:

Additional support for long-term musculoskeletal injuries or disabilities is available from the Occupational Health Service. A management referral form should be completed and sent to the Occupational Health Office or phone extn 2399 for more advice.

Links to
DSE and pregnancy - adjusting your workstation
New and Expectant Mothers Risk Assessment
Obtaining an eye and eyesight test

Find out more about the safe use of DSE

Information on correct posture and workstation layout for computer users
Using DSE at home

The Health and safety Executive (HSE) has produced guidance on the safe use of DSE. See