NASA Logo, National Aeronautics and Space Administration

Procedure Development and Design

I did my Masters Thesis research on the topic of pilot interaction with checklists. I was working at the time as a research assistant for Professor Earl Wiener at the University of Miami. Following the crash of Northwest airlines Flight 255, an accident that involved serious checklist problems, Dr. Wiener was asked by the National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) to testify about human performance and checklist usage by airline pilots. In preparation for the testimony, we looked at many books and scientific articles trying to find information about checklist design. There was none. So I decided to take on the human factors of flight-deck checklists as my thesis topic. Over the years, Earl and I conducted a considerable amount of research on checklists and procedures. Our findings are used by airlines, military units, hospitals, and the nuclear power industry. Currently, I'm working with Michael Heymann and Immanuel Barshi to develop a theory and methodology for the synthesis of emergency procedures and recovery sequences.

Publications

Heymann, M., Degani, A., & Barshi, I. (2007). Generating Procedures and Recovery Sequences: A Formal Approach. Proceedings of the 14th International Symposium of Aviation Psychology, pp. 252-257. April 22-25, Dayton, OH.

Degani, A. (2004). Procedures, Synchronization, and Automation. (A book chapter, from Taming HAL, about procedure design and timing issues.)

Degani, A., Heymann, M., & Shafto, M. (1999). Formal aspects of procedures: The problem of sequential correctness. Proceedings of the 43rd Annual Meeting of the Human Factors and Ergonomics Society. Houston, TX: Human Factors Society.

Degani, A. (1998). Design and Operational Aspects of Flight-Deck Procedures. Proceedings of the International Air Transport Association (IATA) Annual Meeting. Montreal: International Air Transport Association (invited lecture).

Degani, A., & Wiener, E. L. (1997). Procedures in complex systems: The airline cockpit . IEEE Transactions on Systems, Man, and Cybernetics, SMC-27(3), 302-312.

Degani, A., & Wiener, E. L. (1994). Philosophy, policies, procedures, and practices: The Four "P"s of flight deck operations. In N. Johnston, N. McDonald, and R. Fuller (Eds.), Aviation Psychology in Practice (pp. 44-67). Hants, England: Avebury Technical.

Degani, A., & Wiener, E. L. (1994). On the Design of Flight-Deck Procedures. NASA Technical Memorandum #177642. Moffett Field, CA: NASA Ames Research Center.
This report was reprinted in:

  • Flight Safety Foundation Digest: SPECIAL SAFETY REPORT. (1994). Vol. 13(8), pp. 1-67.
  • Callback (NASA's Aviation Safety Reporting System). (1994). No. 184.

Wiener, E. L., & Degani, A. (1994). La progettazione delle procedure di cabina di pilotaggio. Volabilitk. Vol. 24, pp. 48-56.

Degani, A., & Wiener, E. L. (1993). Cockpit checklists: Concepts, design, and use. Human Factors, 35(2), 345-359.

Wiener, E. L., & Degani, A. (1993). The design of procedures. Proceedings of the International Air Transport Association (IATA) Annual Meeting (pp. 34-42). Montreal: International Air Transport Association.

Degani, A. (1992). On the Typography of Flight-Deck Documentation. NASA Technical Memorandum #177605. Moffett Field, CA: NASA Ames Research Center.
This report was reprinted in:

  • Federal Aviation Administration, (1995). Human performance considerations in the use and design of aircraft checklists. Office of Safety Services. Washington, DC: FAA

Degani, A., & Wiener, E. L. (1991). Philosophy, Policies, and Procedures: The Three P's of Flight-Deck Operations. Proceedings of the Sixth International Symposium on Aviation Psychology (pp. 184-191). Columbus, OH: The Ohio State University.

Degani, A., & Wiener, E. L. (1991). Human factors of the cockpit checklist. Journal of the United Nations International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO), 46(6), 18-21.

Degani, A., & Wiener, E. L. (1990). The human factors of flight deck checklists: The normal checklist. NASA Technical Memorandum #177549. Moffett Field, CA: NASA Ames Research Center.
This report was reprinted in:

  • Business Aviation. (1990).
  • USAir Air Safety Journal. (1990).
  • Delta Air Lines Safety Journal. (1991). Vol. 6(1 and 2).
  • Callback (NASA's Aviation Safety Reporting System), No. 136 and No. 137.
  • All Nippon Airlines Journal. (1991). No. 149.
  • Journal of the United Nations Civil Aviation Organization, Vol. 46, No. 6, (June, 1991).
  • Flight Path (Journal of the Arab Airline Pilots), Vol. 4, No. 3, (August, 1991).

Degani, A. (1989). Human Factors of Checklists: The Normal Checklist. Unpublished Masters thesis. Industrial Engineering Department. University of Miami, Florida.

First Gov logo
NASA Logo - nasa.gov