Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Science In Aviation Human Factors



First Advisor

Deborah Carstens

Second Advisor

Meredith Carroll

Third Advisor

Andrew Cudmore


Before a general aviation pilot conducts a flight, they obtain a preflight weather briefing that shares information on possible hazards along the intended route of flight. These preflight weather briefings are typically obtained either verbally, via a narrative delivered over a telephone, or visually, where graphical and textual information is presented on a computer or tablet display. This study compared verbal and graphical/textual weather briefings in a within-subjects study that altered the order in which participants received each format. Thirty-six participants were given a survey that contained two flight scenarios, each with specific weather scenarios and a specific briefing format. Measures of likelihood to make a decision, confidence in this decision, perception of risk, difficulty to interpret weather information, and ambiguity of weather information were collected along with four open-ended questions per each scenario. Overall, the order in which a pilot receives either a verbal or a graphical/textual briefing affects both decision and confidence depending on which briefing is received first as well as the type of weather to be encountered on each leg of a flight. Graphical/textual weather formats that were delivered first generally resulted in a higher likelihood to fly but with slightly lowered confidence, while a verbal briefing that contained weather specific to precipitation resulted in the lowest likelihood with the highest confidence in that decision. Recommendations were made as to which briefing format should be received first based upon the type of weather to be encountered enroute. Consideration for the first weather briefing received on a multi-leg flight has shown to affect the decision and confidence on a subsequent leg if a second briefing with a different format is received.

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