Title A long-term competitive process model of a common procedural error
Publication TypeConference Proceedings
Year of Conference2013
AuthorsTamborello, F, Trafton, JG
Conference NameProceedings of the 35th annual conference of the cognitive science society
PublisherCognitive Science Society
Conference LocationAustin, TX

A novel computational cognitive model explains human
procedural error in terms of declarative memory processes.
This is an early version of a process model intended to predict
and explain multiple classes of procedural error a priori. We
begin with postcompletion error (PCE), a type of systematic
procedural error that people are prone to commit when there
is one step to perform after they have accomplished their
main task goal. Participants in an experiment demonstrated
increased PCE rates following an interruption in a realistic
form-filling task. The model explains PCE as a consequence
of two declarative retrieval processes, spreading activation
and base-level activation, competing with each other because
of features of task and working memory structure. Our
intention is to generalize the model to other classes of
procedural error in complex task environments.

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