Root Cause Analysis as a threshold concept.

A response to the Like Driving a Car Activity
created by Brian Smith (@brian.smith)

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My current field of discipline is in Information Technology. One common threshold concept is Root Cause Analysis. To the uninitiated in the field this concept is daunting. How to arrive a the root cause for an incident / problem / event.  Often that cause is obfuscated or appears unknown and beyond reach. To those operating in the field and used to this form of analysis they use a number of methods and techniques to perform this analysis. These include: The Five (5) Ways – a technique to go from symptom or observation to underlying cause.  Diagramming – system and component diagrams.  These are helpful aids in the analysis. To visualize the system under observation for all of the component relationships within a system and their interactions. Decision Trees – this diagramming methodology helps to describe the logic of systems. A useful aid in determining if systematic logic was at fault or contributed to the event.  All of these techniques would be deployed intuitively by a seasoned root cause analyst. However, for someone new to the discipline they would need to practice and master these methods and techniques to perform a root cause analysis.

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