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Glossary

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Learning Curve

The acquisition of any new skill is associated with the potential for lower-than-expected success rates or higher-than-expected complication rates. This phenomenon is often known as a "learning curve." In some cases, this learning curve can be quantified in terms of the number of procedures that must be performed before an operator can replicate the outcomes of more experienced operators.

While learning curves are almost inevitable when new technology or ways of working emerge, minimising their impact is a safety imperative. One option is to perform initial operations or procedures under the supervision of more experienced operators. Plant simulators may play an increasingly important role in decreasing the impact of learning curves on workers, by allowing acquisition of relevant skills in less risky settings.

 

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