An investigation into inductive parameter learning in complex hierarchical knowledge structures representing clinical expertise

  • Sherif Hegazy

    Student thesis: Doctoral ThesisDoctor of Philosophy


    This dissertation investigates the very important and current problem of modelling human expertise. This is an apparent issue in any computer system emulating human decision making. It is prominent in Clinical Decision Support Systems (CDSS) due to the complexity of the induction process and the vast number of parameters in most cases. Other issues such as human error and missing or incomplete data present further challenges.
    In this thesis, the Galatean Risk Screening Tool (GRiST) is used as an example of modelling clinical expertise and parameter elicitation. The tool is a mental health clinical record management system with a top layer of decision support capabilities. It is currently being deployed by several NHS mental health trusts across the UK. The aim of the research is to investigate the problem of parameter elicitation by inducing them from real clinical data rather than from the human experts who provided the decision model. The induced parameters provide an insight into both the data relationships and how experts make decisions themselves. The outcomes help further understand human decision making and, in particular, help GRiST provide more accurate emulations of risk judgements. Although the algorithms and methods presented in this dissertation are applied to GRiST, they can be adopted for other human knowledge engineering domains.
    Date of Award4 Jul 2012
    Original languageEnglish
    SupervisorChristopher Buckingham (Supervisor)


    • clinical decision support
    • parameter elicitation
    • missing data
    • knowledge engineering

    Cite this