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Checklists and Procedures

Formal checklists and procedures are used in both normal and non-normal situations to guide the actions of skilled professionals. In normal operations, checklists are used to ensure that all essential steps for a phase or segment of work have been properly completed. In off-nominal, emergency, and abnormal situations, written procedures are essential tools to guide appropriate operator response. Developing normal, emergency, and abnormal checklists can be quite complex; for example, checklists for flight crew use in emergency or abnormal situations must be appropriate for the specific situation encountered, easy to access and read and must provide sufficient information to guide crew response effectively. To minimize human error during execution, they must also be designed and written to accommodate the demands of high workload and the human performance limitations imposed by stress. We study the design, content, and use of checklists and procedures used in normal, emergency, and abnormal situations. Our research involves different modes of presentation (paper, stand-alone electronic, integrated electronic) as well as adaptive checklists and procedures, whose content changes in real-time.

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