By Ellen E. Shay, Doctoral Learner, Capella University

If you have expertise in human performance technology (HPT) or human performance improvement (HPI) and information technology (IT) systems or expertise in the development of HPT or HPI models, please consider participating in a study of a proposed model of causes of IT system failures. You will be internally validating how well the exploratory model integrates failure causes derived from existing HPT and IT cause analysis models.

With the widespread, ever-increasing reliance on IT in the workplace, determining the root causes of performance gaps in workplaces has become an increasingly complex challenge for HPT or HPI practitioners. Complicating this challenge is the rate at which IT systems fail or otherwise do not meet expectations. With the focus of HPT on the performance of people, HPT cause analysis models consider the IT system, many users’ primary tool for performing their work, as a single element of the model and do not address the IT system at any level of detail. On the other hand, IT system cause analysis models address the IT system in great detail, with the users considered one of many elements, if considered at all. Your participation in the study, as a scholar or practitioner with dual expertise and experience in HPT or HPI and (a) IT or (b) HPT or HPI model development will help determine the potential of a proposed exploratory cause analysis model that combines the strengths of HPT and IT cause analysis models into an integrated model.

To participate in the study, you must meet the following criteria:

HPT or HPI expertise or experience (at least one of the following):

  • Certified Performance Technologist (CPT) certification from the International Society for Performance Improvement (ISPI)
  • Seasoned HPT or HPI professional practitioner with at least 5 years of experience
  • HPT or HPI author

AND at least one of the two areas below:

(1)   IT expertise or experience (at least one of the following):

  • Actively participated in HPT or HPI projects in which the focus or primary intervention addresses IT systems
  • Experience working on IT projects
  • Formal education or training in IT

(2)   HPT or HPI model development expertise or experience:

  • Have published academic articles or books focused on HPT or HPI models and their development

If you are interested in participating in the study, please send a copy of or a link to your résumé or curriculum vitae (Word, RTF, PDF format) to Be sure to include your current contact information.

Please note: ISPI CPTs receive 3 recertification credits for participating in dissertation research.

Please let me know of your interest to participate by March 18, 2013. The three rounds of the Delphi study will start about March 25, 2013, and finish about May 26, 2013.

If you know of HPT or HPI professionals who potentially meet the requirements to participate in the study, please forward them this invitation to participate.

Your responses during the study will be reported in aggregate or encoded form in a dissertation entitled Internal Validation of an Exploratory Human/Information Technology Cause Analysis Model. Your name and personal information will remain confidential.

Thank you for considering participating in this study.

Ellen E. Shay
Doctoral Learner
Capella University

Ellen Shay has over 30 years of experience in instructional design, performance improvement, and human resources development in a variety of areas, including competency-based human resources, intelligence, law enforcement, military aviation, information technology, healthcare, customer service, nonprofits, disabilities, and animal behavior. Presently working as a supervisory instructional systems specialist in the federal government, she also has worked for private industry and nonprofit organizations. Currently a doctoral learner in Capella University’s Training and Performance Improvement specialization, Ellen has a BA in computer science from the University of Florida and an MS in instructional design from Florida State University. She may be reached at