AN EXPERIMENTAL COMPARISON OF PROCEDURAL AND CONVENTIONAL ELECTRONIC TROUBLESHOOTING.
Final rept. May 67-Aug 68,
APPLIED SCIENCE ASSOCIATES INC VALENCIA PA
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Two groups of subjects solved the same set of 13 troubleshooting and repair problems in seven solid-state circuit modules which contained up to five stages each. Both groups used the same hand tools and test equipment. One group was composed of 41 Air Force 5- and 7- level technicians who normally maintain such equipment as part of their jobs. The technicians used the same troubleshooting techniques they ordinarily used on their jobs, and they were provided with a conventional technical orderlike performance aid to support the task. The other group was composed of 20 high school students with no prior training or experience in electronics. Their training for this study consisted of a special 12-hour course compared to several months for the technicians and they used a specially developed performance aid which told them which check to make, based on the outcome of previous checks. In terms of the speed with which they worked or the frequency with which they were able to effect repairs on the modules, there were no substantial differences between the two groups. But the difference in training time and, therefore, cost of training between the two groups is so great as to suggest the possibility that job-relevant training and proceduralization of the task can introduce substantial savings, even after the cost of developing the special performance aids required by proceduralized troubleshooting is subtracted. The findings of the series of six studies of which this study was one are also summarized. Author
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