• Previous studies have modelled humans moving in masses in Essay

• Previous studies have modelled humans moving in masses in various ways (pages 47 and 48) and these studies have various limitations which are discussed. What are these methods and limitations?

• What conclusions did these studies draw? How does that relate to this study’s hypothesis? (hint: what is the hypothesis?)

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• Having determined the hypothesis, how did the experimenters set about quantifying it? (ie. What were their measured parameters?)

• What factors did they manipulate directly to observe the outcome? Which ones did they hold constant?

• What factors did they measure to form an outcome?

• What was the nature of the experiment?

• How did they set it up?(page 49)

The trial was a mock evacuation with each run being a combination of 1.

Number of Evacuees, 2.Number of Exits, 3.Size of exits and 4.Distribution of exits. They start at start area, and they have to exit as quick as possible. Camera was mounted 8m above the floor. Group Park 3

• What did they use to record the results?

• What sources of error do you anticipate?

People are hard to model; there is a complicated thought process behind each person’s actions that could affect the results of the experiment and the accuracy of the model.

Each person has a distinct personality and that could affect their response.

In addition, the ‘decision points’ reflected may not be accurate because a person may make the decision to switch targets before actually changing their direction.


Participants bias. Some participants may try to guess want the experimenters want to achieve and alter their behaviour to align with what they think.

Group 7

• What do you think you might have done better?

Put different groups of people from different backgrounds, e.g. Age groups and Mental disabilities

Diffferent Settings, put a bigger room maybe, or rly small room or different shapes, and different wall material.

Group Park 3

• What was the nature of their data and manipulation? (hint: Marginal utility in this experiment is a measure of how useful certain knowledge is in helping to come to a decision.) (pages 50 – 51)

The data was statistic based since the experimenters define the decision moment to be the time of being certain of the preferred movement direction. The trajectories are then analysed and data are drawn based off that.

-Grp 4

• What conditions did they create and test under?

• What conclusions did they draw? (Pages 52-53)

• What have the experimenters done that is novel?

All previous studies were based on simulations that had made certain assumptions about human behaviour, and this study was the first to use experimental data to get the theoretical model of human crowding behaviour (1)

• How is it novel?

• How have they addressed the problems that other experimenters have not?

• How have they attempted to address limitations in their own study?

In claiming that the results may be flawed due to the fact that the people involved in the experiment do not realistically interact with one another as they do in actual scenarios, they add to the fact that in telling people to be mindful of others in fleeing the space, the decisions made may not accurately reflect the decisions made in a real evacuation under stress and time constraints.

Furthermore, in comparing the effectiveness of experiments conducted with mice or ants, and stating that the results obtained cannot be reasonably generalized to humans, they impose the expectation to show an experiment in which their findings can be generalised to most evacuation situations (with humans) to a reasonable extent.

Grp 6

• What further study can evolve from this?

– Perception of social influence during emergencies relate to their demographic characteristics

– The presence of acute stress and fear in future experiments

– Internal interactions and collective decisions of subgroups in human crowds

Group 7 ^

• What immediate benefits could these results bring?

Organisations can make their exit sign more visible. Business and other organisations can ‘lead’ their teams more easily as with the results of this experiment, people are more easily manipulated. Group 5

Buildings can be constructed with herd behaviour in mind. For example, when you are designing an auditorium, the placement of the entry and exit points can be improved in order to ensure that the entry/exit points are better utilized.

Grp 6

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