Training and Testing Revisited: A Modest Proposal for Change
ARMY RESEARCH LAB FORT BLISS TX
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The present article is a follow-up to an earlier ITEA Journal article addressing the increasingly complex relationship between training and operational testing see Hawley 2007. In the initial article, the lead author argued that effective test player individual, crew, or unit preparation is essential to valid operational testing. Inadequate preparation invariably results in a flawed test and undermines the validity of data essential to system improvement and acquisition decision making. The initial article outlined a set of pretest training actions that must occur if test players are to be properly prepared to participate in meaningful operational testing. These actions fell into three categories 1 establishing a stable performance environment prior to testing, 2 pretest training conduct, and 3 pretest training evaluation. With respect to pretest training, Hawley 2007 concluded by asserting that test planners are faced with two choices Plan and conduct adequate pretest training, or live with the consequences of a flawed test. The present discussion has an admittedly Army flavor, and many of our observations are taken from tests on Army systems, but the observations are generally applicable to other classes of systems and to other services as well.
- Human Factors Engineering and Man Machine Systems