A self-report critical incident assessment tool for army night vision goggle helicopter operations

Peter F. Renshaw*, Mark W. Wiggins

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

11 Citations (Scopus)


Objective: The present study sought to examine the utility of a self-report tool that was designed as a partial substitute for a face-to-face cognitive interview for critical incidents involving night vision goggles (NVGs). Background: The use of NVGs remains problematic within the military environment, as these devices have been identified as a factor in a significant proportion of aircraft accidents and incidents. The self-report tool was structured to identify some of the cognitive features of human performance that were associated with critical incidents involving NVGs. The tool incorporated a number of different levels of analysis, ranging from specific behavioral responses to broader cognitive constructs. Method: Reports were received from 30 active pilots within the Australian Army using the NVG Critical Incident Assessment Tool (NVGCIAT). Results: The results revealed a correspondence between specific types of NVG-related errors and elements of the Human Factors Analysis and Classification System (HFACS). In addition, uncertainty emerged as a significant factor associated with the critical incidents that were recalled by operators. Conclusion: These results were broadly consistent with previous research and provide some support for the utility of subjective assessment tools as a means of extracting critical incident-related data when face-to-face cognitive interviews are not possible. Application: In some circumstances, the NVGCIAT might be regarded as a substitute cognitive interview protocol with some level of diagnosticity.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)200-213
Number of pages14
JournalHuman Factors
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - Apr 2007
Externally publishedYes


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