The Role of Hierarchical Task Analysis (HTA)

Research Paper Title

HTA: The development and use of tools for Hierarchical Task Analysis in the Armed Forces and elsewhere.


This report seeks to cover the recent past, and current usage of the Hierarchical Task Analysis (HTA) technique in, and for, the UK Armed forces.

The reasons why an HTA should be (or may have been) conducted will be considered in Section 3. The next section (4) will consider current and recent practices in a selection of Governmental and other organisations – both at home and abroad. In Section 5 there will be a comprehensive discussion of the development, enhancement, and extension of the original HTA approach, together with an indication of what an adequate HTA Tool should contain. A review of software based tools for performing an HTA, and of related tools and tool-sets will be given in Section 6.

Why conduct an HTA?

In general, there are two reasons for the conduct of an HTA relating to the Armed forces:

  1. Its use (or that of something similar) has been mandated by Government, or by a
    Governmental Organisation or major commercial enterprise, as part of a larger
    process. This has been observed both in the UK (as part of the Training Needs
    Analysis required by the Defence Acquisition process) and in the US (as part of
    the Aviation Safety process).
  2. Its use for the development of a training programme or training package, or for
    the formal understanding of some complex activity for reasons that are not
    immediately concerned with training (HF Integration, Safety, Error Avoidance
    being examples).


HTA in the Armed Forces & Elsewhere (HFIDTC, 2004-03-30)


Hone, G. & Stanton, N. (2004) HTA: The Development and Use of Tools for Hierarchical Task Analysis in the Armed Forces and Elsewhere. HFIDTC (Human Factors Integration Defence Technology Centre).


Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.