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ERIC Number: ED259186
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 1985-Mar
Pages: 22
Abstractor: N/A
Reference Count: N/A
An Observational Study of Skilled Memory in Waitresses.
Stevens, Joy
A two-phase study about skilled memory as it is used by waitresses included a participant-observer phase and an observational phase. Participants were three experienced waitresses who had worked at a midtown Manhattan restaurant for 14, 7, and 3 years respectively and a team of 5 confederate customers. Waitresses and customers wore microphones. Customers ordered a lunch consisting of a sandwich, dessert, and beverage. Tapes from four observations taken on separate days for each waitress were transcribed and analyzed. Written checks were also collected and analyzed. Working under the speed contraint of their job, the waitresses were very accurate. Although all orders were given in the form sandwich, dessert, beverage, not only were sandwiches and beverages pulled from a list of 15 items and handled toqether or first, but different kinds of sandwiches and beverages (hot or cold) were clustered together. Desserts were also clustered and were always the last items served. Waitresses appeared to use a double classification system: type of item, subclassified by food location. Information was organized in different ways and was multiply encoded by the waitresses, who anticipated different uses for it at different points in their flow of activity. (Four figures and two tables are attached.) (YLB)
Publication Type: Reports - Research; Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A