Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Science

First Advisor

Michael Morabito, PhD


Interactive Electronic Technical Manuals will soon become a requirement for aircraft maintenance technicians. An important aspect in their development is the selection of an input device that will enhance, rather than impede, technician performance. The purpose of this thesis was to evaluate two types of input devices that can he used: a voice recognition input and a keypad input. Studies to date have evaluated the superiority of digital data over paper data, and advantages of using a Head Mounted Display Device over a flat screen laptop computer. No research has evaluated the input device. An experiment was conducted to determine which interface allowed the technicians to work faster. Sixteen F- 16 avionics maintenance technicians from the 178th Tactical Fighter Group, Ohio Air National Guard, performed two parallel tasks using each input device. One task was performed using a keypad input device and another task was performed using a voice recognition input device Raw data showed no statistical difference in task completion between input devices. However, when computer processing time was subtracted from the voice task times, there was a slight time difference found. Most importantly, results indicate that the technicians liked the advantages of the voice recognition input device over the keypad input device. The primary conclusion is that voice recognition may be a desirable input configuration and further study is warranted in more stringent environmental conditions.

AFIT Designator


DTIC Accession Number



Co-authored thesis.

Presented to the Faculty of the Graduate School of Logistics and Acquisition Management of the Air Force Institute of Technology.