Date of Award

Fall 2003

Document Type

Thesis - Open Access

Degree Name

Master of Science in Human Factors & Systems


Human Factors and Systems

Committee Chair

Shawn Doherty, Ph.D.

Committee Member

Steve Hall, Ph.D.

Committee Member

Kenneth Fleming, Ph.D.


There exist many factors that contribute to the optimal manual control of a system by a human operator (HO). Two such variables include control gain and display gain. Of particular interest to the following experiment is the contribution of these two variables to the manual tracking performance of any HO conducting a compensatory tracking task while using a first control-order tracking system. Since the optimal level of control gain required for maximal manual control of a tracking device is system dependent, it may be expected that the same holds true of display gain. Regardless, it is the purpose of the following proposed experiment to show that superior HO performance of the compensatory manual tracking system under study may be brought about by the combination of lower levels of control gain and higher levels of display gain in comparison to the combination of any other levels of these same variables. Tracking performance will be measured by the root mean squared error (RMSE) of tracking deviation as measured by the amount of distance that the element being controlled by participants under study deviated from the tracking device within a given time period.

Included in

Ergonomics Commons