Assessing Process Models with Cognitive Psychology

S. Zugal, J. Pinggera and B. Weber

In: Proc. EMISA '11, pp. 177–182, 2011.

Abstract. The importance of a business process model to be understandable to its reader is widely acknowledged. In this vein, several approaches to assess and improve understandability exist, such as theoretical quality frameworks, modeling guidelines and process model metrics. In this paper we propose to investigate the issue of understandability from the angle of cognitive psychology. To this end, we discuss how the cognitive process of inference acts as a central process of problem solving. In particular, we illustrate in how far chunking, computational offloading and external memory might have an impact on the understandability of process models. Our propositions are theory-based so far and will serve as basis for planned empirical investigations, as discussed in the research agenda.


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Stefan Zugal
Jakob Pinggera
Barbara Weber