Interface design for clinical information systems: An ecological interface design approach

  • Kip Canfield
  • Kerry Petrucci
Conference paper
Part of the Lecture Notes in Computer Science book series (LNCS, volume 733)


This paper uses results from research in Clinical Information Systems (CIS) design, the psychology of clinical reasoning, and Ecological Interface Design (EID) to motivate general design concepts for the human-computer interface of CIS for ambulatory care. There are three primary contributions of this paper to the fields of HCI and Healthcare Informatics. (1) EID is generalized to the very different complex domain of healthcare decision making, (2) The previous work in clinical domain modeling informs the interface design principles of EID, (3) EID holds together a top-down theoretical approach to interface design and a bottom-up approach from specific domains. A specific design for an implemented ambulatory care CIS for geriatrics is used to illustrate the generality of EID.


Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.


  1. 1.
    G. Beeler, P. Gibbons, C. Chute, Development of a Clinical Data Architecture (16th SCAMC, M. Frisse, McGraw-Hill, pp. 244–248, 1992).Google Scholar
  2. 2.
    M. Blois, Information and Medicine: the Nature of Medical Descriptions (University of California Press, Berkeley, CA, 1984).Google Scholar
  3. 3.
    J. Carroll, Introduction, Designing Interaction: Psychology at the Human-Computer Interface in in Designing Interaction J. Carroll, Eds. (Cambridge University Press, New York, NY, 1991).Google Scholar
  4. 4.
    G. Groen, V. Patel, The Relationship Between Comprehension and Reasoning in Medical Expertise in The Nature of Expertise M. Chi, R. Glaser, M. Farr, Eds. (Lawrence Erlbaum Associates, Hillsdale, NJ, 1988).Google Scholar
  5. 5.
    G. Fischer, Domain-oriented design environments. Proceedings of the Seventh Knowledge-based Software Engineering Conference. IEEE Computer Society Press, 1992, pp. 204–213.Google Scholar
  6. 6.
    W. Kintsch, J. Greeno, Understanding and solving word arithmetic problems., Psychological Review 92, pp. 109–129 (1985).PubMedGoogle Scholar
  7. 7.
    T. Landauer, Let's Get Real: A position paper on the role of cognitive psychology in the design of humanly useful and usable systems in Designing Interaction J. Carroll, Eds. (Cambridge University Press, New York, 1991).Google Scholar
  8. 8.
    M. Muller, S. Kuhn, Participatory Design: Introduction (Special Issue Editors), CACM 36:4, 1993.Google Scholar
  9. 9.
    C. McDonald, Delivering X-Ray Images on Hospital Computer Networks MD Computing (1992), pp. 348–350.Google Scholar
  10. 10.
    V. Patel, D. Evans, G. Groen. Biomedical Knowledge and Clinical Reasoning, Manuscript (1989).Google Scholar
  11. 11.
    Z. Pylyshyn, Some Remarks on the Theory-Practice Gap in Designing Interaction J. Carroll, Eds. (Cambridge University Press, New York, NY, 1991).Google Scholar
  12. 12.
    K. Vicente, J. Rasmussen, Ecological Interface Design: Theoretical Foundations, IEEE Transactions on Systems, Man, and Cybernetics 22, pp. 589–606 (1992).Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 1993

Authors and Affiliations

  • Kip Canfield
    • 1
  • Kerry Petrucci
    • 2
  1. 1.Laboratory for Healthcare Informatics Department of Information SystemsUniversity of Maryland, UMBCBaltimoreUSA
  2. 2.Department of Physiological Nursing School of NursingUniversity of WashingtonSeattleUSA

Personalised recommendations