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Civil-Comp Proceedings
ISSN 1759-3433
CCP: 36
Edited by: B. Kumar and A. Retik
Paper IV.2

Influence of Cognitive Overload and Bias on Engineering Design

J.C. Savage, J.C. Miles, C.J. Moore and C. Miles

Department of Civil Engineering, University of Wales, Cardiff, United Kingdom

Full Bibliographic Reference for this paper
J.C. Savage, J.C. Miles, C.J. Moore, C. Miles, "Influence of Cognitive Overload and Bias on Engineering Design", in B. Kumar, A. Retik, (Editors), "Information Representation and Delivery in Civil and Structural Engineering Design", Civil-Comp Press, Edinburgh, UK, pp 77-83, 1996. doi:10.4203/ccp.36.4.2
The research aims to investigate the influence of cognitive overload and bias on engineering design. In order to investigate the design process, simple design tasks which emulate design activity have been developed and used. These tasks enable possible influencing factors on the design process to be isolated and hence their impact assessed.

Two main experiments have been performed to date. Both experiments incorporated simple tasks with easily identifiable components. This allowed the experimenters to single out factors that could be manipulated in order to determine their effect.

The first investigation looked at the effects of time and cost on the design process. From this set of tests, it was established that time and cost constraints both affected designer behaviour.

The second study was performed in order to readdress some of the design shortcomings of the first. Here a new set of tasks were developed for future experimentation. This set of tasks give a 43.75-50.00 percent prediction that subjects will produce a specific design. This is not to say, however, that subjects cannot produce other designs, the opportunity to be creative or use alternative solutions still exist.

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