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The Role of Individual and Team Cognition in Uninhabited Air Vehicle Command-and-Control

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Final performance rept. 15 Feb-31 Dec 2003

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This report documents a three-year AFOSR-funded research effort designed to study individual and team cognition in Unmanned Aerial Vehicle command-and-control. Three experiments were conducted in the CERTT labs UAV-STE Unmanned Aerial Vehicle - Synthetic Task Environment. Experiments 1 and 2 had two main manipulations, dispersion co-located vs. distributed and workload low or high and consisted of 20 teams flying multiple 40-minute missions. The results from these experiments indicate that team performance was affected by increased workload, but not impacted by the dispersion condition, although dispersion did affect knowledge and team process. In Experiment 3 data were collected in CERTTs UAV-STE from five expert teams in order to benchmark team performance. The task acquisition curve was accelerated for several of these teams. What differentiated the expert teams were their long histories of working together in a networked selling e.g., internet video games. It appears that this background alone was enough to speed up their task acquisition in terms of both team process and performance. In addition to these three experiments, this report also documents archival analyses in which we identify individual and role-specific characteristics that are associated with team performance and find support for the utility of holistic and on-line knowledge elicitation in order to accurately assess team knowledge as it relates to team performance. The findings of this report can be summarized broadly by the implication for an increased focus on ongoing, coordinative and other process behaviors rather than focusing on static knowledge for improving applications, theory, and methodology, as they relate to team cognition.

Subject Categories:

  • Pilotless Aircraft
  • Psychology
  • Navigation and Guidance

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