Decision support for competent and expert firefighters

Nathan Perry, Mark Wiggins, Merilyn Childs, Gerard Fogarty

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference proceeding contribution


Decision Support Systems have been proposed as a mechanism through which operator performance can be improved. However, before such systems can be implemented, the interaction between the system and the user needs to be understood. The current study investigated competent and expert firefighters’ interaction with three levels of decision support system interfaces, one full processing interface, and two levels of reduced processing interfaces. The results revealed that competent firefighters accessed significantly more feature displays and made significantly more recursions of feature displays than expert firefighters when using the Full processing DSS interface. However, this difference was not evident when participants used the reduced processing interfaces. Expert firefighters made more accurate decisions than competent firefighters, possibly due to the acquisition of features that were more relevant to the decision task. Therefore, mechanisms may be needed to ensure that competent operators process relevant information when making decisions.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationMeeting the future
Subtitle of host publicationpromoting sustainable organisational growth
EditorsPeter H. Langford, Nicholas J. Reynolds, James E. Kehoe
Place of PublicationMelbourne
PublisherAustralian Psychological Society
Number of pages5
ISBN (Print)9780909881399
Publication statusPublished - 2009
EventIndustrial and Organisational Psychology Conference (8th : 2009) - Sydney
Duration: 25 Jun 200928 Jun 2009


ConferenceIndustrial and Organisational Psychology Conference (8th : 2009)

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    Perry, N., Wiggins, M., Childs, M., & Fogarty, G. (2009). Decision support for competent and expert firefighters. In P. H. Langford, N. J. Reynolds, & J. E. Kehoe (Eds.), Meeting the future: promoting sustainable organisational growth (pp. 101-105). Melbourne: Australian Psychological Society.