Negative consequences of pressure on marksmanship may be offset by early training exposure to contextually relevant threat training: a systematic review and meta-analysis

Daniel Cooper*, Joel Fuller, Mark W. Wiggins, Jodie A. Wills, Tim Doyle, Luana C. Main

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

Abstract

Objective The purpose of this meta-analytic review is to examine the relationship between increased psychological pressure and Use of Force (UOF) behaviours, identifying current training methodologies and effectiveness of transfer of training interventions in high threat-simulated scenarios. Background Data from UOF performance within Law Enforcement indicates a low transfer of marksmanship training into real-world UOF, resulting in unnecessary damage to property, personal injury and increased risk to loss of life. This meta-analysis examines both the impact of increased pressure and current training interventions. Method A meta-analysis was conducted across a wide range of published research to answer the primary research questions. Results Increased levels of perceived pressure demonstrated an average decrease in marksmanship accuracy of 14.8%, together with a small increase in incorrect Decision Making (DM) and faster reaction Times (RT). Experience demonstrated a mitigating effect for pressure for marksmanship with a 1.1% increase for every one year of service but no effect on DM or RT. Training interventions utilizing a variety of early contextually relevant exposures to increased pressure improved performance over traditional training on average by 10.6%. Conclusion The outcomes illustrate the negative effect of pressure on marksmanship and UOF behaviours, and that early exposure to contextually relevant pressure may increase the transfer of training to real-world performance. Application Occupational experience is an important component in reducing the impact of pressure on UOF performance, and transfer of training may be enhanced through training methodologies that combine early exposure to contextually relevant pressure, that may replicate the benefits of experience.

Original languageEnglish
Number of pages18
JournalHuman Factors
DOIs
Publication statusE-pub ahead of print - 6 Apr 2022

Keywords

  • decision making
  • skilled performance
  • transfer of training
  • simulation based skill acquisition
  • perception-action

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