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1 Critical Thinking An Introduction to Situational Awareness and Decision Making Reviewer's references:U.S. Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) Advisory Circular ( AC) 60-22, Aeronautical Decision MakingU.K. Civil Aviation Authority (CAA) CAP737, Crew Resource Management (CRM) TrainingU.K. CAA CAP 719, Fundamental HF Concepts (ICAO Digest No 1)International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) Human Factors Training ManualESSAI - Enhancing Safety through Situation Awareness Integration in training; European research project.Australian Civil Aviation Safety Authority (CASA) Flight Safety Australia, Situation Awareness, November 1998Australian CASA Flight Safety Australia, Mental Is Everything, March-April 2001New Zealand CAA Vector, Airmanship Situation Awareness, January-February 2003GuidelinesfFor Situation Awareness Training. Carolyn PrinceSituational Awareness, Key Component of Safe Flight, Constance BovierManaging Situation Awareness on the Flight Deck or the Next Best Thing to a Crystal Ball. Sheryl L. Chappell, U.S. National Aeronautics and Space Administration ( NASA)Defining Critical Thinking. Michael Scriven and Richard PaulEvaluating Critical Thinking Skills. <www.nadn.navy.mil/CTL/CTRubric.htm>Developing Thinking Skills: Critical Thinking at the Army Management Staff College. Roy EichhornHabits of the Mind. Susan AlvaradoCritical Thinking in Everyday Life. <www.criticalthinking.org>The Memory Key. Fiona McPhersonBeyond Feelings. Vincent RugirioWorking Memory. Brian T. Wilson, Atlantic Southeast Airlines<http://biotechcriticalthinking.ifas.ufl.edu/docs/fact_sheets/skills.pdf>Graphic credit: AirbusThinking about thinkingThis presentation provides an overview of how to improve critical thinking. It is intended to enhance the reader's awareness but it shall not supersede the applicable regulations or airline's operational documentation; should any deviation appear between this presentation and the airline’s AFM / (M)MEL / FCOM / QRH / FCTM, the latter shall prevail at all times.
2 IntroductionThis self-study guide provides advice on how to improve your thinking and introduces the associated aspects of situational awareness and decision making. These subjects are essential processes in threat and error management, which must be used in daily operations. Thinking is the core skill in these activities; critical thinking involves controlling our thinking; thinking about our own thinking.The guide is in five sections:Threat and Error ManagementSituational AwarenessDecision MakingCritical ThinkingThinking — Situational Awareness and Decision MakingProbable cause in 80% of accidents (NTSB):Unprofessional attitude, 47%Pilot technique/decision making. 26%Visual perception – situation misjudgement, 19%U.K. CAA CAP 681 Global Fatal Accident ReviewThe most frequently identified causal factors in the 589 fatal accidents were:1) Lack of positional awareness in air, 244 (41.4%)2) Omission of action/inappropriate action, 216 (36.7%)3) Flight handling, 177 (30.1%)4) Poor professional judgement/airmanship, 134 (22.8%)5) Slow and/or low on approach, 113 (19.2%)6) Failure in Crew Resource Management (CRM), 101 (17.1%)7) Press-on-itis, 97 (16.5%)8) Deliberate non-adherence to procedures, 72 (12.2%)9) Design shortcomings, 67 (11.4%)10) Post crash fire, 63 (10.7%)Note: The factors are not mutually exclusive as each accident generally involves more than one factor.It is interesting to note that the 8 most frequently identified causal factors (including primary) belonged to the Crew group.Everyone thinks; it is our nature to do so. But much of our thinking, left to itself, is biased, distorted, partial, uninformed or downright prejudiced. Yet, the quality of our life — and that of what we produce, make or build — depends precisely on the quality of our thought. Shoddy thinking is costly, both in money and in quality of life. Excellence in thought, however, must be systematically cultivated.Speaker’s notes provide additional information, they can be selected by clicking the right mouse button, select Screen, select Speakers notes.This presentation can be printed in the notes format to provide a personal reference document.
3 Threat and Error Management Threat and error management (TEM) is a major safety process in aviation.TEM consists of detecting, avoiding or trapping threats and errors that challenge safe operations. Where threats and errors are not contained, the resulting conditions must be managed and their adverse effects reduced.All flight and ground operationsThreatsErrorsUndesired StatesDetectAvoid / TrapMitigateSituational Awareness“Threat management is managing your future.”“Error msnagement is managing your past.” Don Gunther, Continental AirlinesGoals of threat and error management (TEM):1. To create awareness and understanding of the risks and hazards.2. To detect and warn of the presence of abnormal conditions or imminent dangers.3. To protect people and the environment from injury and damage.4. To recover from abnormal conditions and to restore the system to a safe state.5. To contain the results of abnormal conditions or hazards.6. To enable the potential victims to escape abnormal conditions or hazards.TEM – data from LOSA (line operations safety audit):72% of flights had at least one external threat; average two per flightTerrain, weather, malfunction, ATC64% of flights had at least one error; average two per flightIncorrect settings, automation, monitoring53% of errors had no pilot responseSituation awareness and decision makingResistResolveRecoverDecision MakingPlanePathPeopleFly the aircraft, Navigate, Communicate, Manage
4 Situational Awareness Situational awareness is having an accurate understanding of our surroundings — where we are, what happened, what is happening, what is changing and what could happen.Good situational awareness requires:Gathering data (sensing, perception), seeking cues in the environmentAssembling information to give understanding (comprehension)Thinking ahead (projection)Thinking about situational awareness involves:Directing our attention to seek data; scanning a range of sourcesEvaluating information without bias, for accuracy and relevanceUnderstanding, using our knowledge and previous experiencesComparing and checking, visualizing future events — ‘What if?’Planning ahead, considering possible outcomesSituational awareness is the accurate perception and understanding of all the factors and conditions within the four fundamental risk elements (pilot, aircraft, environment, operation) that affect safety before, during and after the flight.(U.S. Federal Aviation Administration [FAA] Advisory Circular [AC] 60-22)There are increasing levels of situational awareness:First, we have to see somethingSecond, we need to gain an understanding of what we seeThen, we must use what we have seen and understood by thinking aheadThink about what you will be looking for; what is important at each stage of flight:Focus on a broad region — keep the big pictureFocus on a narrow region — pay attention to detailFocus on the right information — don't get sidetracked or distractedManage your attentionPeoplePathPlaneFutureNowSituationSCANEVALUATEANTICIPATECONSIDERPlanningAheadGathering dataUnderstanding
5 Decision MakingDecision making involves assessment and choosing a course of action.Decision making requires an understanding of the situation and controlled thinking.The situation determines the urgency of the decision, risks and limits of action.Controlled thinking:Reduces riskModerates behaviorManages time constraintsUses knowledge; seeks optionsJudges relevance and the quality of the choicePrepares for action, evaluates the outcome or a future situationT H I N KO O D AObserveOrientDeduceActD E C I D EDetect a changeEstimate significanceChoose a safe outcomeIdentify possible actionsDo take actionEvaluate the resultGRADEGather InformationReview InformationAnalyze AlternativesDecideEvaluate Outcome of Action5 DDetectDetermineDecideDoDisciplineDecision making is a systematic approach to the mental process used by pilots to consistently determine the best course of action in response to a given set of circumstances.(FAA AC 60-22, Aeronautical Decision Making)Decision making is a process that involves assessing the situation and then choosing a course of action (controlled thinking).Situation assessment involves defining the problem and assessing the levels of risk associated with the situation and the amount of time available for solving the problem.Once the problem is defined, a course of action must be chosen. The course of action is selected from the options applicable to the situation.What we write or what we say reflects our thinking. Our behavior and reactions in most situations are governed by our thinking; thus, our behavior, actions, situation assessment and decision making can be adversely affected by previous thoughts, text or statements."Routine" flight operations are underemphasized. Yet, routine flight operations claim many more lives than abnormal or emergency operations.
6 Critical ThinkingCritical thinking provides the mental control and discipline required for situational assessment and decision making. It involves several skills that can be learned, practiced and improved.Control your mind by:Seeking and understanding information, facts and dataEffective planning, briefing and communicationIncreasing knowledge; gaining experienceLearning within a context (situation)Maintain discipline by:Being aware of how you think; hazardous attitudesEvaluating your actions; having self regulationBeing aware of all available resourcesBeing sensitive to feedbackCritical thinking is the skill of thinking about your thinkingCritical thinking is that mode of thinking — about any subject, content or problem — in which the thinker improves the quality of his or her thinking by skillfully taking charge of the structures inherent in thinking and imposing intellectual standards upon them.Hazardous attitudes:Anti-Authority. This is the thought pattern found in people who resent the control of their actions by any outside authority. The general thought is: ‘Do not tell me! No one can tell me what to do.”Impulsivity. This is the thought pattern found in people who, when facing a moment of decision, feel that they must do something, anything, and do it quickly. This thought is characterized in the student manual as: ‘Do something — quickly!”Invulnerability. This is the thought pattern of people who feel that nothing disastrous could happen to them, personally, The thought is characterized in the student manual by the statement: “It won’t happen to me!”Macho. This is the thought pattern of people who are always trying to prove that they are better than others; they “prove” themselves by taking risks and try to impress others by acting dangerously. The thought is characterized in the student manual by the statement: “I can do it.”Out of Control. People who have this thought pattern feel that they can do very little, if anything, to control what happens. When things go well, it is attributed to good luck. When things go badly, it is attributed to bad luck, or it is generally the fault of someone else. This thought is characterized in the student manual by the question: “What’s the use?”Critical thinking is the “quality control of the mind."Critical thinking is the thinking that we must do ‘inside of the box’ before thinking ‘outside of the box.’“Are we in charge of our thinking, or is our thinking in charge of us?“Think inside the box before you think outside of the box“Are we in charge of our thinking, or is our thinking in charge of us?“
7 Critical Thinking — Self awareness Self awareness — self questioning, self monitoringAm I biased in my thinking?Have I made a plan for what I want to do?Are my ideas or knowledge on this issue correct?Am I aware of my thinking; what am I trying to do?Am I using all of the resources for what I want to do?Am I evaluating my thinking; what would I do differently next time?Am I aware of how well I am doing; do I need to change my actions or intentions?Monitoring is checking the quality or testing the accuracy of a situationon a regular basis. It is keeping a close watch overparameters and supervising the outcome.It is checking for threats in our thinking.Thinking Skills:Interpretation – categorization, decoding, clarifying meaningAnalysis – examining ideas, identifying arguments, analyzing argumentsEvaluation – assessing claims, assessing arguments, self examination, self correctionInference – querying claims, conjecturing alternatives, drawing conclusionsExplanation – stating results, justifying procedures, presenting argumentsChecking Purpose / objectiveEnsure that the end objective is understood, what are we going to achieveSeeking Information / facts / dataRelevant evidence should be sought, reliable and true, reported clearly. All data should be considered, data to address the purpose, to support and refute the evidenceReasoningAvoiding taking things for granted, checking the purpose is valid, the problem is solvable, the resources are available. Assumptions should be clearly stated and must be justifiedInterpretation Using proven data to clarify the proposed solution or to justify your position, checking for contradictions. Being consistent, deep thinking, and clearPoints of viewUnderstanding your view, how was it developed, background knowledge, experience, does it make sense. Acknowledging that similar and opposing points of view exist. Understanding and discussing opposing points of viewConclusions / implications / consequencesReasoning should lead somewhere! What are the consequences or implications of our reasoning?What will happen if we take the course of action?Are the implications, conclusions, and consequences realistic / valid?
8 Critical Thinking — Knowledge Improving your thinking — KnowledgeAbout yourselfCommitment: to safety, not following feelings or preferencePositive attitudes: persistence, resourcefulness, learning from failureAttention to detail: seeing the big picture, determining relevance, assessing riskAbout the thinking processesKnowing the facts necessary to do a task by seeking informationKnowing how to do a task, how to scan, understand and think aheadKnowing why certain strategies work, when to use them, why one is better than anotherKnowledge to control the thinking processesSelf evaluation: assessing current technical knowledge, setting objectives, selecting resourcesSelf regulation: checking progress; reviewing choices, procedures, objectives, resourcesPlanning: choosing and planning a path to the objective, using proceduresValuable intellectual virtues — yourself:Intellectual humility: Being aware of your knowledge, being sensitive to self-deception, bias, prejudice and a limiting viewpoint.Intellectual courage: Being aware of the need to face and fairly address ideas, beliefs or viewpoints on which you have strong negative emotions and may not have given serious thought.Intellectual empathy: Being aware of the need to put yourself in the place of others in order to understand them. Being able to reconstruct accurately other people’s viewpoints and reasoning from premises, assumptions, and ideas other than our own. (See the other person’s point of view.)Intellectual integrity: Recognizing the need to be true to your thinking; being consistent in the standards applied; holding yourself to the same standards of evidence and proof as for your antagonists; to practice what is suggested for others; and to honestly admit errors and inconsistencies in your thought and action.Intellectual perseverance: Being aware of the need to use intellectual insights and truths in spite of difficulties, obstacles and frustrations. Following rational principles despite the irrational opposition of others; knowing the need to resist confusion and unanswered questions to achieve deeper understanding or insight.Faith in reason: Having confidence that your interests and those around you are best served by open reasoning, by encouraging people to come to their own conclusions. That people can learn to think for themselves, to form rational viewpoints, draw reasonable conclusions, think coherently and logically, persuade each other by reason, and become reasonable persons, despite the obstacles in everyone’s character, personality or culture.Fair-mindedness: Being aware of the need to treat all viewpoints alike, without reference to one's own feelings or interests, or the feelings or interests of your co-workers, group, community or nation; this implies adherence to intellectual standards without reference to your advantage or the advantage of your group (peer pressure).Graphic credit: FAAPlanning is the process of thinking about what you will do in the event of something happening or not happening.
9 Critical Thinking — Habits Improving your thinking — HabitsChanging our thinking habits requires effort; clear thinking is an essentialpart of airmanship and has to be developed throughout our careers.Unskilled: Basic training only provides those skills necessary to be safe.Safe: Continuation training and experience enable an effective operation.Effective: More technical knowledge, practiced skills and experience give an efficient operation.Efficient: Skillful command in controlling the aircraft and team leadership move toward a precision operation.Precision: An operator who has gained and maintains precise technical and non-technical skills as a result of great personal effort.A well-cultivated critical thinker:Raises vital questions and problems, formulating them clearly and precisely;Gathers and assesses relevant information, using abstract ideas to interpret it effectively;Comes to well-reasoned conclusions and solutions, testing them against relevant criteria and standards;Thinks open-mindedly within alternative systems of thought, recognizing and assessing, as required, knowing their assumptions, implications and practical consequences; and,Communicates effectively with others in identifying solutions to complex problems.Managing interruptions and distractionsManaging attention resourceAvoiding judgments which are influenced by what is typical, orjudgments based on what come easily to mindjudgments relying on what comes first"When I use a word," Humpty Dumpty said in rather a scornful tone, "it means just what I choose it to mean — neither more nor less." – Lewis CarrollExpert thinkersFocus on central issuesIdentify relevant informationConsider information on meritTest and check the basis of their awareness and decisions
10 Critical Thinking — Personal briefing Improving your thinking — BriefingBefore flight, self-briefing reinforces memory cues and knowledge, which aid the recall of information for use in situational assessment and decision making.Know what, who, where and when to prioritize your attentionAlways brief routine operations — repetition aids memoryStructure the briefing along the intended flight pathVisualize your actions (plane, path, people)Consider the significant threatsRecall lessons from trainingRefresh SOPsQuestionsImproving critical thinking:PracticeKnowledgeTake a wide viewConsider several optionsBe prepared to change your view/planTest the accuracy of information and ‘facts’“The only situation you should talk yourself into is a safe one.”Expertise is not only what you remember, it is how you remember information and how you will recall it.Memory recall is quicker with facts in order — What, Who, Where, When (4 Ws)Graphic credit: BAE SystemsDo not rush:Your thoughts control your actions.
11 Critical Thinking — Personal debrief Improving your thinking — DebriefAfter each flight, consider the following points — Plus, Minus, InterestingPlus:What was goodWhat went according to planMinus:What was not so good, and whyWhat didn’t you know; find the answer before the next flightInteresting:Have you changed the way you see things: threats, risks, people or proceduresWhat did you learn, why, and where did the information come from?Will you share this with others; if not why not?Anything for an air safety event report?Any issues for confidential reporting?Did you experience:High workloadPoor attitudesBiased opinionsMismanaged timeUnanswered questions‘Those who cannot remember the past are condemned to repeat it.’ – George Santayana (quoted by Orville Wright)Debriefing: (causes, effects, characteristics, etc.). Mood, emotion, stress, fatigue, ‘getting behind the aircraft,’ peer pressure, hazardous attitudes, ‘press-on-itis’, fixed mindset, reduced situation awareness, and times of confusionIdentify examples of good and bad thinkingConnect issues to training or prior knowledgeCompare/contrast with another flight/experienceCritique/evaluate judgment, apply this to a situation, scenario or caseWhat were you most satisfied with in how you worked?When were you least satisfied? What skills did you use/need?What do you feel that you improved? In what ways do you feel more capable?What were the chief obstacles to being efficient? What will you do differently next time?To improve you thinking, you might ask yourself questions like these:When did I do my worst thinking today? When did I do my best?What, in fact, did I think about today? Did I figure anything out?Did I allow any negative thinking to frustrate me unnecessarily?If I had to repeat today, what would I do differently? Why?Did I do anything today to further my long-term goals?Did I act in accordance with my own expressed values?If I spent everyday this way for 10 years, would I at the end have accomplished something worthy of that time?Skills to improve, queries to look up, things still to discover, procedures to reconfirmPlusMinusInterestingDebriefing
12 Thinking about Situational Awareness and Decision Making Situational awareness and decision making depend on our ability to think.Thinking enables humans to be very successful, but this ability also enables errors that, if not controlled, present risks in our daily activities.All flight and ground operationsValue your ability, use it wiselyThreatsErrorsUndesired StatesAttention resourcesDecision MakingSituationalAwarenessError: A mismatch between the perceived and actual situationA mismatch between intended and actual outcomes of deciding to act.What exactly is the situation/problem?How can I put it into the form of a question?How does it relate to my goals, purposes and needs?State the problem as clearly and precisely as you can.Study the initial information to clarify the “kind” of problem or situation that you are dealing with. Figure out what sorts of things you are going to have to do to solve it. (Sensing)Distinguish problems over which you have some control from problems over which you have no control. Concentrating your efforts on those problems you can potentially solve. (Choice)Figure out the information you need and actively seek that information. (Sensing)Carefully analyze and interpret the information you collect, drawing what reasonable inferences you can. (Comparison)Figure out your options for action. What can you do in the short term? In the long term?Recognize your limitations as far as time and resources. (Comparison)Evaluate your options, taking into account their advantages and disadvantages in the situation you are in. (Choice)Adopt a safe strategic approach to the problem and follow through on that strategy. This may involve direct action or a carefully thought-through wait-and-see strategy.When you act, monitor the implications of your action as they begin to emerge. Be ready at a moment’s notice to revise your actions if the situation requires it. (Monitor)Be prepared to shift your plans or your analysis or statement of the problem, or all three, as more information about the problem becomes available to you.Senses:SeeHearTouchSmellTasteActionMonitorFeedbackReviewResponseWorking memoryLong-term memory - knowledge, biases, beliefsPattern recognitionComparisonChoiceSelection
13 Critical Thinking — for Situational Awareness Critical thinking for situational awareness — seek informationEssential components:Accuracy — Is the information true?Clarity — Can the information be understood?Precision — Seek detail to understand the situation.Relevance — Is the information connected to the situation?Depth — Does the information address the complexity of the situation?Breadth — Are there other points of view or other ways to consider this situation?Logic — Does your understanding of the situation make sense?Whenever you do not understand something, ask yourself a question for clarification?“Situations are discovered, not created.”Questions for any situation:Origin of information:How did you come to think this?Can you remember the circumstances in which you formed this belief?Supporting information:Why do you believe this?Do you have evidence for this?What are some of the reasons why people believe this?In believing this, aren't you assuming that such and such is true? Is that a sound assumption?Conflict with other thoughts:Some people might object to your understanding by saying . . .How would you explain the situation to them?What do you think of this contrasting view?How would you answer the objection that . . .?Implications and consequences:What are the practical consequences of believing this?What would we have to do to put it into action?What follows from the view that . . .?Is this consistent?What does this imply?Your description of a situation will depend on the clarity, accuracy, precision, relevance, coherence, logic, depth, consistency, and fairness of your observations.
14 Critical Thinking — for Decision Making Critical thinking for decision making — the choice of actionEssential components:State the objective of the decision to be madeIdentify information to be used in making the decisionGather the evidence and information required to make a decisionMake a decision based on criteria (a safe outcome), information and risksAsk what the evidence and information mean, considering the objectiveRoutineTrainedForUnusualNovelSituationKnowledgeSkillRulesNeedsUsesRequiresThink about the situation, compare with SOPs, training and previous experience“We can’t solve problems with the same thinking that we used to create them.” – Albert EinsteinProficient decision makers are skilled; they are able to recognize a large number of situations as familiar and to retrieve an appropriate response. In novel situations where no familiar pattern fits, proficient decision makers supplement recognition with processes that verify its results and correct problems.In general, there are three types of options within decision making: rule-based, choice and creative.For rule-based decisions, there is only one action required for a particular condition. Once the problem is recognized, the solution should be evident (e.g., engine failure).Choice decisions involve several options with trade-offs between them (e.g., selecting alternative airports). The choice of a suitable option depends on the objectives of the operator, the flight and the circumstances.Creative decisions relate to situations in which no suitable options are readily available. The decision maker must think about the situation to find a solution (e.g., using analogies to similar situations).There are different reasons why pilots struggle with decision making: (G Klein)Lack of experience, external pressures (time pressure, ambiguity), competing goals such as schedule versus safetyHow can pilots be helped to make better decisions? By teaching them how to ask better questions — questions that are easier to answer and that are more productive. With ‘on the job training’ (e.g., during cruise the more experienced pilot shares his expertise with the less experienced pilot). By improving the process evaluation by training the "observers" to "evaluate" the decision making. By teaching mission planning: this is looking at the vulnerable parts of the flight and preparing alternatives.Think about which SOP applies to the situation, compare with trainingAlmost automatic action; SOPs have been thought through during training
15 Critical Thinking Threat and Error Management Decision Making Critical thinking is at the center of all safety processes and human activity.Threat and ErrorManagementDecisionMakingSituationalAwarenessCritical ThinkingWhenever you don’t understand something, ask yourself a question of clarification.Whenever you are dealing with a complex problem, formulate the question you are trying to answer in several different ways:Am I focused on the main problem or task? How is this connected? How is that connected? Does my information directly relate to the problem or task? Where do I need to focus my attention? Are we being diverted to unrelated matters? Am I failing to consider relevant viewpoints? How is your point relevant to the issue we are addressing? What facts are actually going to help us answer the question?What considerations should be set aside? Does this truly bear on the question? How does it connect?Questions you can ask to discipline your thinking:What precise question are we trying to answer? Is that the best question to ask in this situation? Is there a more important issue we should be addressing? Does this question capture the real issue we are facing? What information do we need to answer the question? What conclusions seem justified in light of the facts? What is our point of view? Do we need to consider another? Is there another way to look at the question? What are some related questions we need to consider?Critical thinking is self-directed, self-disciplined, self-monitored and self-corrective thinking.
16 Information To print the Presenter Notes: In Windows Explorer, change the presentation file extension from .pps to .pptOpen the new ppt file and select File, Print, print what Notes Pages.If the presentation seems to be running slowly, try one or more of the following:Reduce the resolution for the slide show presentation display.On the Slide Show menu, click Set Up Show.Under Performance, in the Slide show resolution box, click 640x480 in the list.Note. Changing resolution may cause the slide image to be slightly shifted. If this happens, either choose a different resolution or click Use Current Resolution.Set the colour depth to 16 bit for optimal performance. For information on changing the number of colours displayed on your monitor, see Microsoft Windows Help.On the Slide Show menu, click Set Up Show. Under Performance, select the Use hardware graphics acceleration check box. If your computer has this capability, Office PowerPoint 2003 will attempt to use it.Note. If you notice performance problems with the slide show after you change this setting, turn off the option. Your computer may not have this capability.Animations (PowerPoint Ver 2003 required). Download reader fromAnimation performance will be much better with a video card that has Microsoft Direct 3D. (Direct 3D is a component of Microsoft DirectX, which is a set of advanced multimedia system services built into the Microsoft Windows operating system.) Many video card manufacturers take advantage of this technology; check with the documentation you received with your computer to find out if Direct 3D is supported.