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Cederic Chin: An Easier Method for Extracting Tacit Knowledge

An Easier Method for Extracting Tacit Knowledge

Author: Cederic Chin


How do you distill expertise into teachable lessons? Chin explains Applied Cognitive Task Analysis framework (ACTA) in part 5 of his series on tacit knowledge.

ACTA was created by Laura Militello and Robert Hutton. They lead experts through four processes:

  • a task diagram to create the big picture of the process

  • a knowledge audit to identify how expertise is used in the process

  • a simulation interview, describing how they used their expertise in an incident

  • a cognitive demands table, that synthesises the prior steps

The cognitive demands table becomes the basis for training materials.


The simuation interviews remind me of post-incident retrospectives.

This would be handy for creating troubleshooting docs, to help flush out the knowledge we don't realize we have.