Error Analysis and Expert-Novice Differences in Medical Diagnosis

Nicholas BOREHAM

University of Manchester

Training and support for diagnosis are often based on a narrow definition of the cognitive skills involved in this critical task. The present chapter examines the complexity of medical diagnosis by analyzing errors and comparing expert and novice diagnostic strategies. The results suggest that diagnosis may involve as many as five interacting lines of reasoning. Training and decision support in complex, dynamic environments should take account of all the cognitive operations these imply.

What is diagnosis? The word entered the English language in the seventeenth century, introduced from the ancient Greek writings of Galen and Hippocrates. ...

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