Part-Task Training versus Whole-Task Training for Simple versus Complex Tasks

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Hillman, Kerstie McKinzey
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Middle Tennessee State University
There is a plethora of approaches to training people on complex tasks. One method that has commonly been used is the whole-task training approach. Another approach that has been used to train individuals on a complex task is through part-task training. Throughout literature there has been a debate regarding which method is more effective for training individuals to complete complex tasks. One measure that has been neglected throughout most research is retention. Most studies have either only measured immediate performance or measured retention a few days to a week after training. The purpose of this study was to examine whether part-task or whole-task training is superior for teaching complex versus simple tasks. The researchers also measured performance at two different times to distinguish between measures of immediate performance and measures of actual retention. The results, limitations, and suggestions for future research are discussed further.
Instructional design, Organizational behavior, Cognitive psychology