Decisional Differences among Individuals: A Signal Detection Theory Approach.
NAVAL AEROSPACE MEDICAL RESEARCH LAB PENSACOLA FL
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The applicability of current theory and measures of risk-taking R-T to the understanding and selection of military aviators was investigated. The project consisted of three interrelated sections 1 an extensive review and critique of the literature in R-T, 2 the development of an alternate measure emphasizing the decisional aspects of R-T, and 3 preliminary findings of a brief study employing proposed signal detection theory measure. On the basis of the R-T literature review, a number of serious weaknesses and difficulties in existing R-T measures were enumerated. Because of these problems, an attempt was made to determine an alternative measure which stressed the decisional aspects of the R-T situation. This involved the application of the signal detection theory framework to a psychophysical task of changing signal probabilities. The validity of this approach for determining decisional differences among individuals was investigated in an auditory detection task of limited length. The results in general were favorable to this alternative approach to measuring meaningful individual differences along a statistical decision dimension. Author