IMPACTS: A tool for the Improvement And Measurement of Perceptual, Attentional, and Critical Thinking Skills

Period of Performance: 05/18/2012 - 07/31/2014


Phase 2 SBIR

Recipient Firm

Aptima, Inc.
12 Gill Street Array
Woburn, MA 01801
Principal Investigator


Problem: Marines in the field rely heavily on their ability to survey the human landscape for potential insurgents and other individuals of interest. To support this activity, the Marines' Combat Hunter program trains "profiling", a set of skills used by military and civilian experts to read people and their interactions in complex environments. However, the Combat Hunter program has several critical limitations; it lacks throughput capacity, performance measures, and scientific grounding. Solution: Aptima has developed a prototype capability to address these limitations. IMPACTS is a multi-media software system that provides Marines with profiling education, and exercises identifying cues in still imagery. Enhancements to IMPACTS will enable the collection of trainee performance data to diagnose skill deficiencies, provide diagnostic feedback for improving performance, and select subsequent IMPACTS training activities. These capabilities will support pre-training preparation (before live classes), training evaluation, and increase training throughput for the acquisition of critical combat profiling skills. IMPACTS will be developed to support several ongoing Navy and Marine Corps efforts, including Small Unit Decision Making (SUDM), the Infantry Small Unit Leaders Course (ISULC), and the Perceptual Training Systems and Tools (PercepTS) program.