Developing Expertise in Complex Socio-Technical Systems
Event Type
Poster Presentation
TimeThursday, April 152:00pm - 3:00pm EDT
LocationHospital Environments
DescriptionComplex socio-technical systems require experts, who can solve a variety of tasks and deal with critical events, even in unprecedented situations. In the area of critical care for instance, the need for experts has tremendously increased especially in times of the pandemic. Dynamic conditions and work environments impact the cognitive workload and require maintaining high situation awareness. These are only some of the challenges that exist in complex socio-technical areas and demonstrate the demand for appropriate expertise development.

This contribution presents fundamental definitions of “expertise”, “experts” and “novices” to seek a common understanding of the development of expertise based on various contexts and one area of application.
Based on this terminology, criteria for comparison are developed based on literature to compare different types of experts, such as physicians in healthcare.
The criteria for comparison include how expertise in that domain is measured, e.g. variety of diseases treated in critical care, as well as the official authorities measuring expertise starting from a novice’s level.
Examples for the area of critical care novices and experts will be provided.

The research method follows a two-fold approach. First, literature research was conducted to gain an understanding of the underlying terminology and collect information about the criteria of experts in different areas. Boundary conditions of the respective area are identified, and characteristics sorted into criteria.

Second, for extending the literature by knowledge not yet published, detailing some parts as well as confirming literature knowledge, interview findings of experts in the respective areas, and experts who educate others to become experts in their area, will be demonstrated.
The semi-structured interviews via telephone and video-calls thus add to the literature findings and detail out the specific criteria for expertise development. All related notes taken for data collection are categorized and compared with the findings in the literature.

The goal is to provide the audience with fundamental terminology in the area of expertise, an overview of different types of expertise, and compare these with pre-defined criteria to allow for further completion of existing terminology. These will translate into design ideas for an ecological interface that shall support the process of expertise development in the respective domains and facilitate the shaping of mental models among novices to become experts. Ultimately, the goal is to promote the acquisition of mental models as such of an expert within complex socio-technical systems and thus improve the effectiveness of learning, performance, and arrangement of resources.