Date of Award

Summer 2007

Document Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)




Human Factors Psychology

Committee Director

James P. Bliss

Committee Member

Terry L. Dickinson

Committee Member

James M. Henson

Committee Member

Rao Chaganty


The purpose of this research was threefold: (1) Present the a-b SDT model as an alternative framework to overcome the limitations of the underlying SDT model and the traditional measures of sensitivity and criterion setting, (2) Provide empirical support to validate the adequacy of the a-b SDT model, and (3) Conduct a Monte Carlo Study to compare and contrast the strengths and weaknesses of both the traditional and the a-b SDT models across the full spectrum of response values with the goal of providing researchers and practitioners with recommendations regarding the adequacy of each model. The results from this research have both theoretical implications and practical applications. The findings from the empirical study suggest that Green and Swets (1966)'s contention that the detection and response processes are independent from each other is questionable. Furthermore, the findings from the Monte Carlo Study suggest that the a-b SDT model provides more accurate measures to capture the dependency between these two processes. This is particularly important for researchers and practitioners who are interested in studying human-automation interaction factors and how sensory and perceptual factors may affect humans' response biases while interacting with automated systems.