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Concurrent Task Management and Prospective Memory: Pilot Error as a Model for the Vulnerability of Experts  (2006)
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In five of the 27 major U.S. airline accidents between 1987 and 2001 in which the NTSB found crew error
to be a causal factor, inadvertent omission of a normal procedural step played a pivotal role. Such
omissions are a form of prospective memory error. My research group is attempting to link real-world
prospective memory phenomena with task demands and with underlying cognitive processes. I briefly
summarize studies from three quite different but complementary approaches: ethnographic studies,
analyses of accident and incident reports, and laboratory studies. Five types of situation presented
prospective memory challenges: episodic tasks, habitual tasks, atypical actions substituted for habitual
actions, interrupted tasks, and interleaving tasks/monitoring. An experimental study found that inadequate
encoding, inadequate cueing, and competing demands for attention make individuals vulnerable to
forgetting to resume interrupted tasks.
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Concurrent, management, memory, pilot, prospective, task, vulnerability
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In Proceedings of the Human Factors and Ergonomics Society 50th Annual Meeting (pp. 903-114). San Francisco, CA: HFES.
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Adobe PDF Icon  Dismukes_HFES.pdf (Download Acrobat Reader Click to download Adobe Acrabat Reader)
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Last Updated: August 15, 2019