Principles For Aiding Complex Military Decision Making
Hutchins, Susan G.
Morrison, Jeffrey G.
Kelly, Richard T.
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The Tactical Decision Making Under Stress (TADMUS) program is being conducted to apply recent developments in decision theory and human-system interaction technology to the design of a decision support system for enhancing tactical decision making under the highly complex conditions involved in anti-air warfare scenarios in littoral environments. Our goal is to present decision support information in a format that minimizes any mismatches between the cognitive characteristics of the human decision maker and the design and response characteristics of the decision support system. Decision makers are presented with decision support tools which parallel the cognitive strategies they already employ, thus reducing the number of decision making errors. Hence, prototype display development has been based on decision making models postulated by naturalistic decision-making theory. Incorporating current human-system interaction design principles is expected to reduce cognitive processing demands and thereby mitigate decision errors caused by cognitive overload, which have been documented through research and experimentation. Topics include a discussion of: (1) the theoretical background for the TADMUS program; (2) a description of the cognitive tasks performed; (3) the decision support and human- system interaction design principles incorporated to reduce the cognitive processing load on the decision maker; and (4) a brief description of the types of errors made by decision makers and interpretations of the cause of these errors based on the cognitive psychology literature.
Paper presented to the Second International Command and Control Research and Technology Symposium, Monterey, Ca.
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