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This paper examines decision makers’ selection of contextual control modes as described by Hollnagel’s Contextual Control Model, and evaluates real-time, unobtrusive measures of a decision maker’s immediate mode. In a two-part experiment, participants performed airline rescheduling tasks. The first portion varied task time limits, the second introduced a sudden change in the task. Participants reported operating in, and transitioning between, different contextual control modes in response to time limits and task changes. Computer interaction did not correlate to contextual control modes. Contextual control modes did not correlate with TLX ratings of demand and effort, but did correlate with TLX-frustration and TLX-performance ratings. The results suggest that decision making performance may be determined by use of context-appropriate contextual control modes, and imply that the design of decision aids should work to support those modes.