The benefits of practice with interruptions is step-specific

AbstractIn two studies we investigated the effect of resumption practice following an interruption at the same step in a Computerized Physician Order Entry system (CPOE). The results of both studies showed that error rate decreased with increasing amounts of resumption practice. One reason people may have resumed more accurately following an interruption is improvement in a general resumption process. If true, we would expect that participants could be interrupted at any step in a task and show improved resumption with increased practice. Instead, our results suggest that repeatedly resuming from the same step likely produces associative priming between a specific task, interruption, and step. The associative priming allowed participants to resume more successfully with additional interruption practice, but only for that task-interruption-step triplet.

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