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Strategies and tactics in fault diagnosis

Morrison, D.L. and Duncan, K.D. (1988) Strategies and tactics in fault diagnosis. Ergonomics, 31 (5). pp. 761-784.

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Large individual differences in the ability to diagnose novel system failures are often noted in the research literature. Recent evidence suggests that measures of reflective cognitive styles may be good predictors of fault diagnosis performance.

In Experiment 1 the styles or strategies developed by novice problem solvers for context independent fault diagnosis tasks were examined in detail. Two different strategies, similar to focusing and scanning strategies described by previous researchers, were found to be consistently adopted by subjects. Experiment 2 showed that a measure of focusing and scanning strategies predicted diagnosis performance better than a measure of reflectivity. In addition it was found that the amount of between subjects' variation that could be accounted for increased as subjects became more practiced at fault-finding.

Publication Type: Journal Article
Murdoch Affiliation: School of Psychology
Publisher: Taylor and Francis
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