Skill Acquisition and Training
The Teen Driver Safety Research team at The Children's Hospital of Philadelphia Research Institute is working to reduce the frequency and severity of crashes involving teens behind the wheel. The following projects are currently underway:
- Young Driver Research Initiative (YDRI)
This unique academic-industry alliance between The Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia Research Institute and State Farm Mutual Automobile Insurance Company addresses not only concerns about driving, but also the parent-teen relationship, peer relationships among teens, and issues around adolescent, cognitive, and emotional development. Several YDRI peer-reviewed papers have been published about how these factors contribute to teens’ driving behaviors. Current research in this area is focusing on understanding how to optimize the learning-to-drive experience of young drivers.
Studies of newly-licensed teen drivers indicate that they exit the learner permit period with significant difficulty executing a variety of driving behaviors. The ability to identify these driving skill deficits during the learner permit phase would significantly advance teen driver research. Recent CHOP research pinpointed the specific types of teen driver errors most likely to lead to a serious crash, and the YDRI team is working to develop interventions to reduce these errors from occurring when teens begin driving independently.
One study, which is currently underway, Development of an On-Road Driving Assessment for Learner Teen Drivers, aims to develop a safe, developmentally appropriate, and challenging assessment of teen drivers during the learner permit phase. To be called the On-Road Driving Assessment for Learner Teen Drivers (tODA), it will assess a wide range of specific driving tasks and characterize the nature of safety-relevant errors (classified as "critical errors") that teens make during the learner phase. The tODA expands the repertoire of driving assessments for teens and could be used in research studies or practical evaluations of driving performance.
Please contact Dennis Durbin, MD, MSCE, for more study information at email@example.com; (215) 590-7331.
This project is funded by State Farm Mutual Automobile Insurance Company.
- Evaluation of an Online Training Program Designed to Prevent Young Driver Crashes
Can an online driver training program be effective in promoting the adoption of safe driving behaviors and in reducing crashes? The inherent danger of driving makes this question challenging to study on the road. To answer these questions, our research team is using its new, high-fidelity driving simulator to provide a realistic driving experience in which to study ways to prevent crashes. We hope to learn what improves and impairs safe driving performance and behavior under a wide variety of driving conditions. A series of studies is underway to develop and validate new simulator methods and then to put them to use in the evaluation of online training programs.
Please contact Dana Bonfiglio for more study information at firstname.lastname@example.org ;(267) 426-7031.
This project is funded by the Pennsylvania State Department of Health.
- Increasing Tacit Knowledge of Driving Hazards, Risk Assessment, and Crash Mitigating Factors
This project will design a web-based training program to improve driver safety by helping drivers understand hazards, more accurately assess their risk associated with hazards, and take the appropriate actions in response to the presence of hazards. The training system is designed to be motivating, using video footage from a driving simulator to display realistic scenarios and interactive traffic events. The system requires trainees to respond to scenarios and provides immediate assessment and feedback on these responses. The feedback is customized to each trainee and includes suggestions for a more appropriate response to each of the scenarios, as well as useful tips.
For more information on this study, please contact Yi-Ching Lee, PhD at (267) 426-5217 or LEEY1@email.chop.edu.
This project is funded by the Army Research Institute, Department of Defense.