Document Type


Publication Date





The role of the human operator in automation augmented domains has shifted from primary decision-maker to collaborative partner, where the human often has to understand and manage state changes that result from the automation itself. Due to the challenges of these progressively complex states, there is increasing demand for automation systems that provide effective humanautomation interfaces that keep the human more “in-the-loop”. Effective human-automation interaction in this situation is akin to effective human-human communication: an effective conversation occurs when people use commonly understood verbal and non-verbal mechanisms that lead to shared understanding, or common ground. In this paper, we demonstrate how the application of a communication grounding framework, typically used to describe the practices of effective human communication, can be used as an analytic tool to assess human-automation interfaces. This analytic tool can be used to highlight design flaws likely to result in breakdowns in human-automation interaction, and ultimately lead to human error.