Title: Using the situation present assessment method to measure situation awareness in simulated submarine track management

Authors: Shayne Loft; Daniel B. Morrell; Samuel Huf

Addresses: School of Psychology, The University of Western Australia, 35 Stirling Hwy, Crawley, Western Australia 6009, Australia ' School of Psychology, The University of Western Australia, 35 Stirling Hwy, Crawley, Western Australia 6009, Australia ' Submarine Human Systems and Analysis, Maritime Operations Division, Defence Science and Technology Organisation, A51, HMAS Stirling, P.O. Box 2188, Rockingham, Western Australia 6967, Austalia

Abstract: Extant query-based measures of situation awareness that require interruption of dynamic tasks can be inappropriate in certain work contexts. A candidate real-time query-based method, the situation present assessment method (SPAM), was used to examine participants' situation awareness in simulated submarine track management. The simulation and situation awareness queries were based upon a goal-directed task analysis conducted with expert submariners. Participants decided whether to engage enemy vessels using rules based on clear firing corridors for submarine torpedoes, and responded to SPAM queries that assessed their awareness of the current and future display situation. Participants were less accurate and slower to respond to SPAM queries that assessed awareness of the future display situation compared to the current display situation. Consistent with theoretical frameworks of visual sampling and attention-situation awareness integration, the relative predictive utility of current- and future- SPAM queries depended on the nature of the display information relevant to performance goals.

Keywords: situation present assessment method; SPAM; situation awareness; submarine track management; attention; visual sampling; simulation; enemy engagement; enemy vessels; clear firing corridors; submarine torpedoes; display information; performance goals.

DOI: 10.1504/IJHFE.2013.055975

International Journal of Human Factors and Ergonomics, 2013 Vol.2 No.1, pp.33 - 48

Received: 15 Nov 2012
Accepted: 24 Feb 2013

Published online: 23 Aug 2013 *

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