MEASURING SUBJECTIVE WORKLOAD: WHEN IS ONE SCALE BETTER THAN MANY?

Authors
  1. Hendy, K.C.
  2. Hamilton, K.M.
  3. Landry, L.N.
Corporate Authors
Defence and Civil Inst of Environmental Medicine, Downsview ONT (CAN)
Abstract
The idea that mental workload should be treated as a multidimensional problem is well recognized. Yet the NASA Task Load Index and Subjective Workload Assessment Technique scales incorporate procedures for combining multidimensional judgements into scaler estimates of overall workload. In view of comparable or superior performance claimed for univariate scales, it is reasonable to ask whether the scaled vales are good estimates of overall processing demands and whether workload values derived from multidimensional scales provide better estimates than do judgements made on a univariate scale. This paper examines these issues using data from found independent studies. The results support two conclusions. First, if a measure of the overall demand on human information-processing is required, then a univariate rating is expected to provide a measure that is at least as sensitive to manipulations of task demand as a derived estimate from multivariate data. Second, if a univariate workload rating is not available, a simple unweighed additive model provides an adequate method for combining factor ratings into an estimate of overall workload.
Report Number
DCIEM-92-07 — Research Paper; Reprint
Date of publication
01 Dec 1993
Number of Pages
23
Reprinted from
Human Factors, vol 35, no 4, 1993, p 579-601
DSTKIM No
94-04178
CANDIS No
143222
Format(s):
Hardcopy;Originator's fiche received by DSIS

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