Fast and frugal models of clinical judgement in novice and expert physicians

Frank Kee, John Jenkins, S. McIlwaine, Christopher Patterson, S. Harper, Michael Shields

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

19 Citations (Scopus)


Our objective was to study whether “compensatory” models provide better descriptions of clinical judgment than fast and frugal models, according to expertise and experience. Fifty practitioners appraised 60 vignettes describing a child with an exacerbation of asthma and rated their propensities to admit the child. Linear logistic (LL) models of their judgments were compared with a matching heuristic (MH) model that searched available cues in order of importance for a critical value indicating an admission decision. There was a small difference between the 2 models in the proportion of patients allocated correctly (admit or not-admit decisions), 91.2% and 87.8%, respectively. The proportion allocated correctly by the LL model was lower for consultants than juniors, whereas the MH model performed equally well for both. In this vignette study, neither model provided any better description of judgments made by consultants or by pediatricians compared to other grades and specialties.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)293-300
Number of pages8
JournalMedical Decision Making
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - Jul 2003


  • linear models
  • clinical judgment
  • fast and frugal

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health
  • Health Informatics
  • Health Information Management
  • Nursing(all)

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