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Getting past first base: going all the way with cognitive work analysis

Getting past first base: going all the way with cognitive work analysis
Getting past first base: going all the way with cognitive work analysis
This paper reports the application of Cognitive Work Analysis (CWA) to the problem of communications planning in military aviation. Applications of CWA rarely get beyond the first one or two phases; this paper presents an analysis in which all five phases have been completed. The method offers a formative description of the system, defining the set of boundaries and constraints that shape system activity in terms of work domain, recurring activities, decision making, social organisation and worker competency requirements. It is an analysis that is well suited to environments in which the occurrence of unanticipated events can have serious implications for both safety and productivity. Communications planning in military aviation is such an environment. The outputs of the analysis provided an extensive and exhaustive description of the system, highlighting the uneven spread of activity, across actors involved in communications planning and across the situations in which planning can occur. In addition, a new method for informing worker competency requirements based on abstract functions rather than specific decision steps is proposed and discussed in terms of job design, interface design, and person specification.

cognitive work analysis, communications planning, worker competencies analysis
0003-6870
358-370
McIlroy, Rich C.
68e56daa-5b0b-477e-a643-3c7b78c1b85d
Stanton, Neville A.
351a44ab-09a0-422a-a738-01df1fe0fadd
McIlroy, Rich C.
68e56daa-5b0b-477e-a643-3c7b78c1b85d
Stanton, Neville A.
351a44ab-09a0-422a-a738-01df1fe0fadd

McIlroy, Rich C. and Stanton, Neville A. (2011) Getting past first base: going all the way with cognitive work analysis. Applied Ergonomics, 42 (2), 358-370. (doi:10.1016/j.apergo.2010.08.006). (PMID:20843505)

Record type: Article

Abstract

This paper reports the application of Cognitive Work Analysis (CWA) to the problem of communications planning in military aviation. Applications of CWA rarely get beyond the first one or two phases; this paper presents an analysis in which all five phases have been completed. The method offers a formative description of the system, defining the set of boundaries and constraints that shape system activity in terms of work domain, recurring activities, decision making, social organisation and worker competency requirements. It is an analysis that is well suited to environments in which the occurrence of unanticipated events can have serious implications for both safety and productivity. Communications planning in military aviation is such an environment. The outputs of the analysis provided an extensive and exhaustive description of the system, highlighting the uneven spread of activity, across actors involved in communications planning and across the situations in which planning can occur. In addition, a new method for informing worker competency requirements based on abstract functions rather than specific decision steps is proposed and discussed in terms of job design, interface design, and person specification.

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More information

Published date: January 2011
Keywords: cognitive work analysis, communications planning, worker competencies analysis

Identifiers

Local EPrints ID: 186499
URI: https://eprints.soton.ac.uk/id/eprint/186499
ISSN: 0003-6870
PURE UUID: 33c22d33-68ea-4543-b0c8-3c987c8b14a3
ORCID for Rich C. McIlroy: ORCID iD orcid.org/0000-0003-0326-8101

Catalogue record

Date deposited: 13 May 2011 10:34
Last modified: 06 Jun 2018 12:12

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