Five experienced divers and 15 novice divers completed a complex underwater asembly task and sets of written problems in a water-filled tank and in the ocean. Performance measurements included subtask completion times, problem-solving accuracy, activity analysis, and basic physiological variables. Experienced divers showed essentially unchaged performance between tank and ocean. Novice divers performend slower than the experienced divers in the tank and showed a makred decrement in both assembly time and problem-solving accuracy in the ocean. The results suggest that diving experinece improves underwater motor skills rather than work strategy, and that psychological stress was a significant factor even at shallow ocean depths for novices.
Weltman, Gershon; Christianson, Raymond A.; and Egstrom, Glen H.
"Effects of Environment & Experience on Underwater Work Performance,"
Journal of Human Performance in Extreme Environments:
1, Article 2.