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Sample records for change assessment task

  1. Task analysis revisited: refining the phlebotomy technician scope of practice and assessing longitudinal change in competencies.

    PubMed

    Fidler, James R

    2007-06-01

    A random sample of 500 phlebotomy technicians certified by a national organization was queried regarding perceptions of importance of 53 specific practice-related tasks representative of various departmental areas. The sample was surveyed via a mail questionnaire. Role centrality was assessed by considering mean importance ratings and by applying the Rasch measurement model to assigned importance ratings. Approximately 36% of the questionnaires received by respondents were returned. The results revealed which tasks were fundamental to the phlebotomy technician scope of practice. To assess longitudinal change in core duties, task saliency was considered with respect to similar data collected a decade earlier. Task importance may be considered by agencies that educate, credential, or employ phlebotomy technicians in providing current job function descriptions. The longitudinal methodology employed may be applicable to other job roles for which the assessment of change is of interest. PMID:17476028

  2. Frontal EEG theta changes assess the training improvements of novices in flight simulation tasks.

    PubMed

    Borghini, G; Arico, P; Astolfi, L; Toppi, J; Cincotti, F; Mattia, D; Cherubino, P; Vecchiato, G; Maglione, A G; Graziani, I; Babiloni, F

    2013-01-01

    The aim of the study is to analyze the variation of the EEG power spectra in theta band when a novice starts to learn a new task. In particular, the goal is to find out the differences from the beginning of the training to the session in which the performance level is good enough for considering him/her able to complete the task without any problems. While the novices were engaged in the flight simulation tasks we recorded the brain activity by using high resolution EEG techniques as well as neurophysiologic variables such as heart rate (HR) and eye blinks rate (EBR). Results show clear changes in the EEG power spectra in theta band over the frontal brain areas, either over the left, the midline and the right side, during the learning process of the task. These results are also supported by the autonomic signals of HR and EBR, by the performances' trends and by the questionnaires for the evaluation of the perceived workload level. PMID:24111260

  3. A Cognition Analysis of QUASAR's Mathematics Performance Assessment Tasks and Their Sensitivity to Measuring Changes in Middle School Students' Thinking and Reasoning.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Cai, Jinfa, And Others

    1996-01-01

    Presents a conceptual framework for analyzing students' mathematical understanding, reasoning, problem solving, and communication. Analyses of student responses indicated that the tasks appear to measure the complex thinking and reasoning processes that they were designed to assess. Concludes that the QUASAR assessment tasks can capture changes in…

  4. Physiological assessment of task underload

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Comstock, J. Raymond, Jr.; Harris, Randall L., Sr.; Pope, Alan T.

    1988-01-01

    The ultimate goal of research efforts directed at underload, boredom, or complacency in high-technology work environments is to detect conditions or states of the operator that can be demonstrated to lead to performance degradation, and then to intervene in the environment to restore acceptable system performance. Physiological measures may provide indices of changes in condition or state of the operator that may be of value in high-technology work environments. The focus of the present study was on the use of physiological measures in the assessment of operator condition or state in a task underload scenario. A fault acknowledgement task characterized by simple repetitive responses with minimal novelty, complexity, and uncertainty was employed to place subjects in a task underload situation. Physiological measures (electrocardiogram (ECG), electroencephalogram (EEG), and pupil diameter) were monitored during task performance over a one-hour test session for 12 subjects. Each of the physiological measures exhibited changes over the test session indicative of decrements in subject arousal level. While high correlations between physiological measures were found across subjects, individual differences between subjects support the use of profiling techniques to establish baselines unique to each subject.

  5. A Population of Assessment Tasks

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Daro, Phil; Burkhardt, Hugh

    2012-01-01

    We propose the development of a "population" of high-quality assessment tasks that cover the performance goals set out in the "Common Core State Standards for Mathematics." The population will be published. Tests are drawn from this population as a structured random sample guided by a "balancing algorithm."

  6. Disentangling Dimensions in the Dimensional Change Card-Sorting Task

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Kloo, Daniela; Perner, Josef

    2005-01-01

    The dimensional change card-sorting task (DCCS task) is frequently used to assess young children's executive abilities. However, the source of children's difficulty with this task is still under debate. In the standard DCCS task, children have to sort, for example, test cards with a red cherry or a blue banana into two boxes marked with target…

  7. Long-Term Climate Change Assessment Task for the Hanford Site Permanent Isolation Barrier Development Program: Status through FY 1992

    SciTech Connect

    Petersen, K.L.; Chatters, J.C.

    1993-07-01

    The Hanford Site Permanent Isolation Barrier Development Program (Barrier Development Program) was organized (Adams and Wing 1986) to develop the technology needed to provide an in-place disposal capability for the US Department of Energy at the Hanford Site in southeastern Washington. The goals of the Barrier Development Program are to provide defensible evidence that final barrier design(s) will adequately control water infiltration, plant and animal intrusion, and wind and water erosion for a minimum of 1,000 years; to isolate wastes from the accessible environment; and to use markers to warn inadvertent human intruders. Evidence for barrier performance will be obtained by conducting laboratory experiments, field tests, computer modeling, and other studies that establish confidence in the barrier`s ability to meet its 1,000-year design life. The performance and stability of natural barrier analogs that have existed for several millennia and the reconstruction of climate changes during the past 10,000 to 125,000 years also will provide insight into bounding conditions of possible future changes and increase confidence in the barriers design. In the following discussion the term {open_quotes}long-term{close_quotes} references periods of time up to 1000`s of years, distinguishing it from {open_quotes}short-term{close_quotes} weather patterns covering a decade or less. Specific activities focus on planning and conducting a series of studies and tests required to confirm key aspects of the barrier design. The effort is a collaborative one between scientists and engineers from Westinghouse Hanford Company (Westinghouse Hanford) and Pacific Northwest Laboratory (PNL) to design barriers to limit movement of radionuclides and other contaminants to the accessible environment for at least 1,000 years. These activities have been divided into 14 groups of tasks that aid in the complete development of protective barrier and warning marker system.

  8. Assessing L2 Task Performance: Understanding Effects of Task Design

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Tavakoli, Parvaneh

    2009-01-01

    The overarching aim of the research reported here was to investigate the effects of task structure and storyline complexity of oral narrative tasks on second language task performance. Participants were 60 Iranian language learners of English who performed six narrative tasks of varying degree of structure and storyline complexity in an assessment…

  9. Illinois task force on global climate change

    SciTech Connect

    Griffin, B.S.

    1996-12-31

    The purpose of this report is to document progress in the areas of national policy development, emissions reduction, research and education, and adaptation, and to identify specific actions that will be undertaken to implement the Illinois state action plan. The task force has been tracking national and international climate change policy, and helping shape national policy agenda. Identification and implementation of cost-effective mitigation measures has been performed for emissions reduction. In the area of research and education, the task force is developing the capacity to measure climate change indicators, maintaining and enhancing Illinois relevant research, and strengthening climate change education. Activities relevant to adaptation to new policy include strengthening water laws and planning for adaptation. 6 figs., 4 tabs.

  10. Learning effects in the lane change task (LCT)--realistic secondary tasks and transfer of learning.

    PubMed

    Petzoldt, Tibor; Brüggemann, Stephanie; Krems, Josef F

    2014-05-01

    Driver distraction is a factor that is heavily involved in traffic crashes. With in-vehicle devices like navigation systems or mobile phones on the rise, the assessment of their potential to distract the driver has become a pressing issue. Several easy-to-use methods have been developed in recent years to allow for such an assessment in the early stages of product development. One of these methods is the lane change task (LCT), a simple driving simulation in which the driver has to change lanes as indicated by different signs along the road. Although the LCT is an ISO sanctioned procedure, there are still open questions. One issue are learning effects which have been found in previous studies and which have the potential to compromise the comparability of test results. In this paper, we present results on two experiments that further explored the effect of previous experience on LCT and secondary task performance. The results confirm that learning effects occur when combining the LCT with a realistic secondary task. Also, we found evidence for the transfer of learning from one secondary task to another to some degree, provided that the two tasks are sufficiently similar. PMID:24070734

  11. [Population changes and social welfare tasks].

    PubMed

    Lee, H K

    1985-07-01

    Efforts to control population growth made during the last 20 years are expected to maintain a stable population in the future. We cannot limit our concern to the control of population growth but must consider the social welfare task in the aspect of population stability. It is not because population changes set limits to artificial control, but because the order of population changes presents a desirable sign for low fertility. Another important concern is to pay attention to how to make human beings already born and those to be born in the future enjoy their quality of life. Socioeconomic stability requires economic stabilization to meet basic essential needs. Changes in population structure, along with the quantitative growth of population, make changes in patterns of social welfare demands. When the pyramid type of population structure becomes changed to the bell or pot type of population structure, changes in education and employment as well as changes in problems of the aged and medical demands must be made. On the other hand, population changes accompany value changes in the process of modernization of society. These multiple social changes bring about a value of individualism and a nuclear family norm, and an enlargement of women's social participation which, in turn, can cause family problems. At the same time, social deviations and failures may be increased in the industrial society, and, thus, welfare countermeasures have to be taken. In this respect, the base of social welfare for meeting basic demands must be formed not in the past, narrow sense but in the long range and multisided aspects. PMID:12267357

  12. Assessing Visuospatial Abilities in Healthy Aging: A Novel Visuomotor Task.

    PubMed

    de Bruin, Natalie; Bryant, Devon C; MacLean, Jessica N; Gonzalez, Claudia L R

    2016-01-01

    This study examined the efficacy of a novel reaching-and-grasping task in determining visuospatial abilities across adulthood. The task required male and female young (18-25 years) and older adults (60-82 years) to replicate a series of complex models by locating and retrieving the appropriate building blocks from an array. The task allows visuospatial complexity to be manipulated independently from the visuomotor demands. Mental rotation and spatial visualization abilities were assessed. The results showed that the time taken to complete the tasks increased with increased mental rotation complexity. Patterns of hand use were also influenced by the complexity of the models being constructed with right hand use being greater for the less complex models. In addition, although older adults consistently performed the visuomotor tasks slower than the younger adults, their performance was comparable when expressed as the percent change in task demands. This is suggestive that spatial abilities are preserved in older adults. Given the ecologically validity, the described task is an excellent candidate for investigating: (1) developmental; (2) sex-based; and (3) pathology-based differences in spatial abilities in the visuomotor domain. PMID:26869918

  13. Assessing Visuospatial Abilities in Healthy Aging: A Novel Visuomotor Task

    PubMed Central

    de Bruin, Natalie; Bryant, Devon C.; MacLean, Jessica N.; Gonzalez, Claudia L. R.

    2016-01-01

    This study examined the efficacy of a novel reaching-and-grasping task in determining visuospatial abilities across adulthood. The task required male and female young (18–25 years) and older adults (60–82 years) to replicate a series of complex models by locating and retrieving the appropriate building blocks from an array. The task allows visuospatial complexity to be manipulated independently from the visuomotor demands. Mental rotation and spatial visualization abilities were assessed. The results showed that the time taken to complete the tasks increased with increased mental rotation complexity. Patterns of hand use were also influenced by the complexity of the models being constructed with right hand use being greater for the less complex models. In addition, although older adults consistently performed the visuomotor tasks slower than the younger adults, their performance was comparable when expressed as the percent change in task demands. This is suggestive that spatial abilities are preserved in older adults. Given the ecologically validity, the described task is an excellent candidate for investigating: (1) developmental; (2) sex-based; and (3) pathology-based differences in spatial abilities in the visuomotor domain. PMID:26869918

  14. Task-dependent changes of intracortical inhibition.

    PubMed

    Liepert, J; Classen, J; Cohen, L G; Hallett, M

    1998-02-01

    The motor-evoked potential (MEP) to transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS) is inhibited when preceded by a subthreshold TMS stimulus at short intervals (1-6 ms; intracortical inhibition, ICI) and is facilitated when preceded by a subthreshold TMS at longer intervals (10-15 ms; intracortical facilitation, ICF). We studied changes in ICI and ICF associated with two motor tasks requiring a different selectivity in fine motor control of small hand muscles (abductor pollicis brevis muscle, APB, and fourth dorsal interosseous muscle, 4DIO). In experiment 1 (exp. 1), nine healthy subjects completed four sets (5 min duration each) of repetitive (1 Hz) thumb movements. In experiment 2 (exp. 2), the subjects produced the same number of thumb movements, but complete relaxation of 4DIO was demanded. Following free thumb movements (exp. 1), amplitudes of MEPs in response to both single and paired TMS showed a trend to increase with the number of exercise sets in both APB and 4DIO. By contrast, more focal, selective thumb movements involving APB with relaxation of 4DIO (exp. 2) caused an increase in MEP amplitudes after single and paired pulses only in APB, while a marked decrease in MEPs after paired pulses, but not after single TMS, in the actively relaxed 4DIO. This effect was more prominent for the interstimulus interval (ISI) of 1-3 ms than for longer ISIs (8 ms, 10 ms, and 15 ms). F-wave amplitudes reflecting excitability of the alpha motoneuron pool were unaltered in APB and 4DIO, suggesting a supraspinal origin for the observed changes. We conclude that plastic changes of ICI and ICF within the hand representation vary according to the selective requirements of the motor program. Performance of more focal tasks may be associated with a decrease in ICI in muscles engaged in the training task, while at the same time ICI may be increased in an actively relaxed muscle, also required for a focal performance. Additionally, our data further supports the idea that ICI and ICF

  15. The Impact of Assessment Tasks on Subsequent Examination Performance

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Van Gaal, Frank; De Ridder, Annemieke

    2013-01-01

    In this article, the impact of assessment tasks on examination result (measured by examination grades) is investigated. Although many describe the advantages of electronic assessment tasks, few studies have been undertaken which compare a traditional approach using a classical examination with a new approach using assessment tasks. The main…

  16. Assessing the Cost of Task Switching with a Three-Task Paradigm

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Remington, Roger W.; Ruthruff, Eric; Johnston, James C.; Connors, Mary M. (Technical Monitor)

    1998-01-01

    To study task switching when subjects need not inhibit inappropriate responses, we examine tasks with non-overlapping stimulus sets (e.g. color patches and uncolored letters). A new three-task paradigm permits the dissociation of several otherwise confounded variables. We find that performance declines monotonically with increasing time since last performance of a task. Adjusting for the effects of this factor permits a fresh assessment of the relationship between task expectancy and recency (Ruthruff, Remington & Johnston, 1996).

  17. Performance assessment task team progress report

    SciTech Connect

    Wood, D.E.; Curl, R.U.; Armstrong, D.R.; Cook, J.R.; Dolenc, M.R.; Kocher, D.C.; Owens, K.W.; Regnier, E.P.; Roles, G.W.; Seitz, R.R.

    1994-05-01

    The U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) Headquarters EM-35, established a Performance Assessment Task Team (referred to as the Team) to integrate the activities of the sites that are preparing performance assessments (PAs) for disposal of new low-level waste, as required by Chapter III of DOE Order 5820.2A, {open_quotes}Low-Level Waste Management{close_quotes}. The intent of the Team is to achieve a degree of consistency among these PAs as the analyses proceed at the disposal sites. The Team`s purpose is to recommend policy and guidance to the DOE on issues that impact the PAs, including release scenarios and parameters, so that the approaches are as consistent as possible across the DOE complex. The Team has identified issues requiring attention and developed discussion papers for those issues. Some issues have been completed, and the recommendations are provided in this document. Other issues are still being discussed, and the status summaries are provided in this document. A major initiative was to establish a subteam to develop a set of test scenarios and parameters for benchmarking codes in use at the various sites. The activities of the Team are reported here through December 1993.

  18. Cortical Activation Changes During Simple Motor Task over Repeated Sessions

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Matsuzaki, Shuichi; Yamada, Taro; Wada, Yasuhiro

    Recent fMRI studies of human motor function and learning have reported that the magnitude of brain activity involves a decreasing trend over repeated tasks in the absence of improvements in task performance, probably suggesting the effect of habituation. Here we show that similar effect can be detected by NIRS. In experiments, oxygenated hemoglobin (HbO) changes were monitored during a finger tapping task over repeated sessions. Results showed that task-related brain activity exhibited a decreasing trend on motor-related areas over the sessions. These suggest that measurements of NIRS may exhibit the brain-induced trends over repetition of simple motor tasks.

  19. U.S. Navy Task Force Climate Change

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Miller, T.; McBride, B.; St. John, C.

    2011-12-01

    In May 2009, the Chief of Naval Operations established Task Force Climate Change (TFCC) to develop Navy policy, plans, and recommendations regarding future investments to adapt to the world's changing climate. With a near-term focus on the changing Arctic ocean and consequent increase in access to the region, TFCC has adopted a science-based approach in collaboration with other U.S. government agencies, international partners, industry, and academia. TFCC has developed two roadmaps that provide 5-year action plans for the Navy to address the Arctic and global climate change. Critical elements of both roadmaps are assessments of: (1) current and projected climate change, (2) resulting impacts to Naval missions and infrastructure, and (3) associated risks of not taking adaptation actions that are operationally, environmentally, and ecologically sustainable. Through TFCC, the Navy acknowledges the link between climate change and national security, and engages in extensive outreach and strategic communication to remain informed on the best climate science and promote public understanding and support regarding the Navy's climate change efforts.

  20. When Mathematics and Statistics Collide in Assessment Tasks

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Bargagliotti, Anna; Groth, Randall

    2016-01-01

    Because the disciplines of mathematics and statistics are naturally intertwined, designing assessment questions that disentangle mathematical and statistical reasoning can be challenging. We explore the writing statistics assessment tasks that take into consideration potential mathematical reasoning they may inadvertently activate.

  1. Learning from Student Experiences for Online Assessment Tasks

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Qayyum, M. Asim; Smith, David

    2015-01-01

    Introduction: Use of the Internet for open Web searches is common among university students in academic learning tasks. The tools used by students to find relevant information for online assessment tasks were investigated and their information seeking behaviour was documented to explore the impact on assessment design. Method: A mixed methods…

  2. On the Roles of Task Model Variables in Assessment Design.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Mislevy, Robert J.; Steinberg, Linda S.; Almond, Russell G.

    Tasks are the most visible element in an educational assessment. Their purpose, however, is to provide evidence about targets of inference that cannot be directly seen at all: what examinees know and can do, more broadly conceived than can be observed in the context of any particular set of tasks. This paper concerns issues in an assessment design…

  3. Managing Change in Universities: A Sisyphean Task?

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Brown, Sally

    2012-01-01

    Implementing change in higher education is complex and challenging and its results are difficult to measure. This article will argue that university senior management can make change happen but it is rarely straightforward and never easy. It reviews the ways in which leaders aiming to enhance practice can implement enhancement activities,…

  4. Instrumental Assessment of Bradykinesia: A Comparison Between Motor Tasks.

    PubMed

    Mentzel, Thierry Q; Mentzel, Charlotte L; Mentzel, Stijn V; Lieverse, Ritsaert; Daanen, Hein A M; van Harten, Peter N

    2016-03-01

    Bradykinesia, a common symptom in psychiatry, is characterized by reduced movement speed and amplitude. Monitoring for bradykinesia is important, as it has been associated with reductions in quality of life and medication compliance. Subtle forms of bradykinesia have been associated with treatment response in antipsychotic-naïve first episode patients. Therefore, accurate and reliable assessment is of clinical importance. Several mechanical and electronic instruments have been developed for this purpose. However, their content validity is limited. This study investigated which tasks, or combinations thereof, are most suitable for assessing bradykinesia instrumentally. Eleven motor tasks were assessed using inertial sensors. Their capability of distinguishing bradykinetic patients with schizophrenia ( n = 6) from healthy controls ( n = 5) was investigated. Seven tasks significantly discriminated patients from controls. The combination of tasks considered most feasible for the instrumental assessment of bradykinesia was the gait, pronation/supination, leg agility and flexion/extension of elbow tasks (effect size = 2.9). PMID:25823047

  5. How Task Features Impact Evidence from Assessments Embedded in Simulations and Games

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Almond, Russell G.; Kim, Yoon Jeon; Velasquez, Gertrudes; Shute, Valerie J.

    2014-01-01

    One of the key ideas of evidence-centered assessment design (ECD) is that task features can be deliberately manipulated to change the psychometric properties of items. ECD identifies a number of roles that task-feature variables can play, including determining the focus of evidence, guiding form creation, determining item difficulty and…

  6. Toward Dynamic Assessment of Reading: Applying Metacognitive Awareness Guidance to Reading Assessment Tasks.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Guterman, Eva

    2002-01-01

    Tests the effect of using written metacognitive awareness guidance (MCAG) as a tool for activating and engaging learners'"Habits of Mind" while processing authentic reading assessment tasks taken from Israeli kits of assessment tasks. Confirms that applying metacognitive awareness guidance to reading assessment tasks makes a difference in the…

  7. State Writing Assessment: Inclusion of Motivational Factors in Writing Tasks

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Olinghouse, Natalie G.; Zheng, Jinjie; Morlock, Larissa

    2012-01-01

    This study evaluated large-scale state writing assessments for the inclusion of motivational characteristics in the writing task and written prompt. We identified 6 motivational variables from the authentic activity literature: time allocation, audience specification, audience intimacy, definition of task, allowance for multiple perspectives, and…

  8. Evaluating Multiple Perspectives: Approaching the Synthesis Task through Assessing Credibility

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Lafferty, Karen Elizabeth; Summers, Amy; Tanaka, Stephanie; Cavanagh, Jeanne

    2016-01-01

    Introduction of the Common Core State Standards and assessments like the synthesis performance task pose new challenges for secondary English teachers. As students of all ability levels engage with complex text and in tasks that target higher level cognitive skills, teachers need strategies to support their understanding. This article describes…

  9. Postural responses to changing task conditions.

    PubMed

    Hansen, P D; Woollacott, M H; Debu, B

    1988-01-01

    The experimental goal was to investigate discrepancies in the literature concerning postural adaptation and to determine if the prior presentation of horizontal perturbations affected the amplitude of responses to rotational perturbations. Surface EMG recordings from lower leg muscles (gastrocnemius (GAS) and tibialis anterior (TA)) were recorded in twelve subjects, and the amplitudes of the responses were statistically analyzed. We did not find differences between the responses to rotational perturbations which preceded or followed horizontal perturbations. This finding did not support the hypothesis that differences in the order of presentation of the different types of perturbations accounted for the discrepancies in the literature. Furthermore, our design did not show the progressive elimination of the GAS response within three to five sequential trials. Instead, we found a slow but significant response amplitude reduction over ten trials without yielding a permanent disappearance of the response. When analyzing the GAS responses to the rotational perturbations only, we found two components that contributed to the response reduction: 1) an initial reduction between trials one and subsequent trials, which could be due to habituation of a startle-like response; and 2) a second reduction which was more gradual. Our results also showed an immediate change in the response amplitude on the first trial, when the type of perturbation was changed. This is inconsistent with the view that ankle musculature stretch and joint movement are the primary inputs driving the postural responses. Since small ankle dorsiflexing rotations produced by the platform translations caused large GAS responses while large ankle dorsiflexing rotations produced by direct platform rotations caused small GAS responses, this suggests that multiple sensory inputs contribute to the responses. We propose that an initial compensation to a new perturbation type occurs within the first trial by the

  10. Assessing Changes in High School Students' Conceptual Understanding through Concept Maps before and after the Computer-Based Predict-Observe-Explain (CB-POE) Tasks on Acid-Base Chemistry at the Secondary Level

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Yaman, Fatma; Ayas, Alipasa

    2015-01-01

    Although concept maps have been used as alternative assessment methods in education, there has been an ongoing debate on how to evaluate students' concept maps. This study discusses how to evaluate students' concept maps as an assessment tool before and after 15 computer-based Predict-Observe-Explain (CB-POE) tasks related to acid-base chemistry.…

  11. Changing Advising through Assessment

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Light, Richard J.

    2004-01-01

    By asking assessment questions that have direct policy implications, a committee of Harvard advisors, faculty members, and administrators was able to implement specific and concrete on-campus advising initiatives. Only modest amounts of data were collected to effect meaningful changes in student behavior, course design, and assignments. Interviews…

  12. Assessing Literary Reasoning: Text and Task Complexities

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Lee, Carol D.; Goldman, Susan R.

    2015-01-01

    This article addresses 3 broad challenges of assessment in reading comprehension: (a) explicitly articulating the knowledge and skills students need to recognize and be able to use in comprehending complex texts; (b) understanding how knowledge and skills progress and successively deepen and develop over repeated opportunities to engage in tasks…

  13. Functional Task Test: 2. Spaceflight-Induced Cardiovascular Change and Recovery During NASA's Functional Task Test

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Phillips, Tiffany; Arzeno, Natalia M.; Stenger, Michael; Lee, Stuart M. C.; Bloomberg, Jacob J.; Platts, Steven H.

    2011-01-01

    The overall objective of the functional task test (FTT) is to correlate spaceflight-induced physiological adaptations with changes in performance of high priority exploration mission-critical tasks. This presentation will focus on the recovery from fall/stand test (RFST), which measures the cardiovascular response to the transition from the prone posture (simulated fall) to standing in normal gravity, as well as heart rate (HR) during 11 functional tasks. As such, this test describes some aspects of spaceflight-induced cardiovascular deconditioning and the course of recovery in Space Shuttle and International Space Station (ISS) astronauts. The sensorimotor and neuromuscular components of the FTT are described in two separate abstracts: Functional Task Test 1 and 3.

  14. Functional Task Test: 1. Sensorimotor changes Associated with Postflight Alterations in Astronaut Functional Task Performance

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Bloomberg, J. J.; Arzeno, N. H.; Buxton, R. E.; Feiveson, A. H.; Kofman, I. S.; Lee, S. M. C.; Miller, C. A.; Mulavara, A. P.; Platts, S. H.; Peters, B. T.; Phillips, T.; Ploutz-Snyder, L. L.; Reschke, M. F.; Ryder, J. W.; Spiering, B. A.; Stenger, M. B.; Taylor, L. C.; Wickwire, P. J.; Wood, S. J.

    2011-01-01

    Space flight is known to cause alterations in multiple physiological systems including changes in sensorimotor, cardiovascular, and neuromuscular systems. These changes may affect a crewmember s ability to perform critical mission tasks immediately after landing on a planetary surface. The overall goal of this project is to determine the effects of space flight on functional tests that are representative of high priority exploration mission tasks and to identify the key underlying physiological factors that contribute to decrements in performance. This presentation will focus on the sensorimotor contributions to postflight functional performance.

  15. Design and Analysis in Task-Based Language Assessment.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Mislevy, Robert J.; Steinberg, Linda S.; Almond, Russell G.

    2002-01-01

    Introduces a framework for systematizing the design of language performance assessments and explicating the role of tasks within them. Their design outlines fundamental components that must be rationalized and operationalized in order for performance assessment to produce coherent evidence of examinees' abilities. (Author/VWL)

  16. Developmental Changes in Switching between Mental Task Sets: The Influence of Verbal Labeling in Childhood

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Karbach, Julia; Kray, Jutta

    2007-01-01

    Age-related changes in the use of verbal processes for the efficient switching between tasks were investigated in 5-year-old children (N = 32, M age = 5.9 years) and 9-year-old children (N = 32, M age = 9.4 years). Task switching was assessed by means of a cued switching paradigm to examine two switching components: (a) to maintain and select and…

  17. Estimating endogenous changes in task performance from EEG

    PubMed Central

    Touryan, Jon; Apker, Gregory; Lance, Brent J.; Kerick, Scott E.; Ries, Anthony J.; McDowell, Kaleb

    2014-01-01

    Brain wave activity is known to correlate with decrements in behavioral performance as individuals enter states of fatigue, boredom, or low alertness.Many BCI technologies are adversely affected by these changes in user state, limiting their application and constraining their use to relatively short temporal epochs where behavioral performance is likely to be stable. Incorporating a passive BCI that detects when the user is performing poorly at a primary task, and adapts accordingly may prove to increase overall user performance. Here, we explore the potential for extending an established method to generate continuous estimates of behavioral performance from ongoing neural activity; evaluating the extended method by applying it to the original task domain, simulated driving; and generalizing the method by applying it to a BCI-relevant perceptual discrimination task. Specifically, we used EEG log power spectra and sequential forward floating selection (SFFS) to estimate endogenous changes in behavior in both a simulated driving task and a perceptual discrimination task. For the driving task the average correlation coefficient between the actual and estimated lane deviation was 0.37 ± 0.22 (μ ± σ). For the perceptual discrimination task we generated estimates of accuracy, reaction time, and button press duration for each participant. The correlation coefficients between the actual and estimated behavior were similar for these three metrics (accuracy = 0.25 ± 0.37, reaction time = 0.33 ± 0.23, button press duration = 0.36 ± 0.30). These findings illustrate the potential for modeling time-on-task decrements in performance from concurrent measures of neural activity. PMID:24994968

  18. Reliability of assessing trunk motor control using position and force tracking and stabilization tasks

    PubMed Central

    Reeves, N. Peter; Popovich, John M.; Priess, M. Cody; Cholewicki, Jacek; Choi, Jongeun; Radcliffe, Clark J.

    2014-01-01

    System-based methods have been applied to assess trunk motor control in people with and without back pain, although the reliability of these methods has yet to be established. Therefore, the goal of this study was to quantify within- and between-day reliability of assessing trunk motor control using systems-based methods involving position and force tracking and stabilization tasks. Ten healthy subjects performed six tasks, involving tracking and stabilizing of trunk angular position in the sagittal plane, and trunk flexion and extension force. Tracking tasks involved following a one-dimensional, time-varying input signal displayed on a screen by changing trunk position (position tracking) or trunk force (force tracking). Stabilization tasks involved maintaining a constant trunk position (position stabilization) or constant trunk force (force stabilization) while a sagittal plane disturbance input was applied to the pelvis using a robotic platform. Time and frequency domain assessments of error (root mean square and H2 norm, respectively) were computed for each task on two separate days. Intra-class correlation coefficients (ICC) for error and coefficients of multiple correlations (CMC) for frequency response curves were used to quantify reliability of each task. Reliability for all tasks was excellent (between-day ICC ≥ 0.8 and CMC > 0.75, within-day CMC > 0.85). Therefore, position and force control tasks used for assessing trunk motor control can be deemed reliable. PMID:24262851

  19. Changes in cognitive task performance across the menstrual cycle.

    PubMed

    Broverman, D M; Vogel, W; Klaiber, E L; Majcher, D; Shea, D; Paul, V

    1981-08-01

    Menstrual-cycle-related changes in estrogen were expected to differentially affect various cognitive tests. Specifically, the estrogen peak occurring at midcycle in ovulatory women was expected to facilitate performance of highly practiced "automatized" tasks and to impair performance of "perceptual-restructuring" tasks, compared with performance of these tasks in the postovulatory phase of the cycle when progesterone is thought to counteract the action of estrogen. Perceptual-restructuring tasks are defined as tasks in which the initial percepts to obvious stimulus attributes are wrong and must be set aside in favor of percepts to less obvious stimulus attributes. Eight-seven regularly menstruating undergraduate women were studied. Odd-numbered subjects were tested first on or about Day 10 of their cycle and then again on Day 20; even-numbered subjects, in the reverse sequence. Daily basal body temperature records were obtained. These temperature records suggested that 21, or 24%, of the subjects did not ovulate in the cycle(s) studied. No main effect of Day 10 versus Day 20 occurred for any task in the 66 women who did appear to ovulate. However, the magnitude of predicted shifts in performance was significantly correlated with proximity of the "Day 10" testing day to the thermal nadir of the basal body temperature record, the presumed preovulatory estrogen peak; and to the "Day 20" proximity to the basal body temperature thermal peak, the presumed progesterone peak. Subjects tested 3 or fewer days before the thermal nadir and on or after the thermal peak had the predicted significant changes on three of the four administered tasks. No other temporally defined group produced significant changes. The results of the study support the experimental hypotheses and also indicate that precise timing is essential to demonstrate the phenomena. PMID:7276285

  20. Developmental changes in using verbal self-cueing in task-switching situations: the impact of task practice and task-sequencing demands.

    PubMed

    Kray, Jutta; Gaspard, Hanna; Karbach, Julia; Blaye, Agnès

    2013-01-01

    In this study we examined whether developmental changes in using verbal self-cueing for task-goal maintenance are dependent on the amount of task practice and task-sequencing demands. To measure task-goal maintenance we applied a switching paradigm in which children either performed only task A or B in single-task blocks or switched between them on every second trial in mixed-task blocks. Task-goal maintenance was determined by comparing the performance between both blocks (mixing costs). The influence of verbal self-cueing was measured by instructing children to either name the next task aloud or not to verbalize during task preparation. Task-sequencing demands were varied between groups whereas one group received spatial task cues to support keeping track of the task sequence, while the other group did not. We also varied by the amount of prior practice in task switching while one group of participants practiced task switching first, before performing the task naming in addition, and the other group did it vice versa. Results of our study investigating younger (8-10 years) and older children (11-13 years) revealed no age differences in beneficial effects of verbal self-cueing. In line with previous findings, children showed reduced mixing costs under task-naming instructions and under conditions of low task-sequence demands (with the presence of spatial task cues). Our results also indicated that these benefits were only obtained for those groups of children that first received practice in task switching alone with no additional verbalization instruction. These findings suggest that internal task-cueing strategies can be efficiently used in children but only if they received prior practice in the underlying task so that demands on keeping and coordinating various instructions are reduced. Moreover, children benefitted from spatial task cues for better task-goal maintenance only if no verbal task-cueing strategy was introduced first. PMID:24381566

  1. Assessment in Higher Education in the Professions: Action Research as an Authentic Assessment Task

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Maxwell, T. W.

    2012-01-01

    The argument of this article is that assessment in higher education in the professions can benefit from quality assessment tasks linked to professional practice. Such an assessment task would need to be authentic requiring considerable intellectual skill as well as attending to the realities of professional demands. The idea of authentic…

  2. Acquisition and Maintenance of Time-Based Task Change Sequence.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Martin, James E.; And Others

    1987-01-01

    To examine use of antecedent cues to complete a sequence of vocational tasks, five mildly to moderately mentally retarded students (aged 16-19) served as subjects. Written and pictorial prompts, introduced in a least intrusive manner, enabled the students to learn and maintain a sequenced time-based schedule that changed daily. (Author/JDD)

  3. Crafting a Balanced System of Assessment in Wisconsin. Recommendations of the Next Generation Assessment Task Force

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Wisconsin Department of Public Instruction, 2009

    2009-01-01

    The Next Generation Assessment Task Force was convened to formulate Wisconsin's path forward. Task force members listened to leaders from business and technology sectors as well as leaders from PK-12 and higher education. This summary shares the process, definitions, assumptions, and recommendations of the task force. This paper aims to use these…

  4. Automatic Shifts of Attention in the Dimensional Change Card Sort Task: Subtle Changes in Task Materials Lead to Flexible Switching

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Fisher, Anna V.

    2011-01-01

    Two experiments tested a hypothesis that reducing demands on executive control in a Dimensional Change Card Sort task will lead to improved performance in 3-year-olds. In Experiment 1, the shape dimension was represented by two dissimilar values ("stars" and "flowers"), and the color dimension was represented by two similar values ("red" and…

  5. Assessment and Intervention for Academic Task Attack Strategy Competencies

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Busse, R. T.; Lee, Charlene

    2015-01-01

    Many students who underachieve in schools may not be learning as effectively as they could. Direct assessments such as the Academic Competence Evaluation Scales (ACES), School Motivation and Learning Strategies Inventory (SMALSI), and the Academic Task Attack Checklist System (ATACS) can be used to evaluate students' knowledge and use of…

  6. Teachers' Voices on Integrating MCAG into Reading Assessment Tasks.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Guterman, Eva; Boxall, Waltraud

    2002-01-01

    Attempts to address, on behalf of the teacher of reading, some pedagogically significant aspects of metacognition. Tests the effect of using Metacognitive Awareness Guidance (MCAG) in reading assessment tasks given to nine-year-old Israeli pupils. Notes teachers' reactions related to four aspects: use of self-talk, use of metacognitive learning…

  7. "A Priori" Assessment of Language Learning Tasks by Practitioners

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Westhoff, Gerard J.

    2009-01-01

    Teachers' competence to estimate the effectiveness of learning materials is important and often neglected in programmes for teacher education. In this lecture I will try to explore the possibilities of designing scaffolding instruments for a "priori" assessment of language learning tasks, based on insights from SLA and cognitive psychology, more…

  8. Onset of Dyskinesia and Changes in Postural Task Performance during the Course of Neuroleptic Withdrawal.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Newell, Karl M.; Ko, Young G.; Sprague, Robert L.; Mahorney, Steven L.; Bodfish, James W.

    2002-01-01

    The effect of neuroleptic withdrawal on postural task performance of 20 adults with mental retardation was examined. Assessments were conducted at baseline and monthly intervals, extending to one year following complete medication withdrawal, when significant changes in amount of postural motion and sequential pattern of postural movement…

  9. Incorporating detection tasks into the assessment of CT image quality

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Scalzetti, E. M.; Huda, W.; Ogden, K. M.; Khan, M.; Roskopf, M. L.; Ogden, D.

    2006-03-01

    The purpose of this study was to compare traditional and task dependent assessments of CT image quality. Chest CT examinations were obtained with a standard protocol for subjects participating in a lung cancer-screening project. Images were selected for patients whose weight ranged from 45 kg to 159 kg. Six ABR certified radiologists subjectively ranked these images using a traditional six-point ranking scheme that ranged from 1 (inadequate) to 6 (excellent). Three subtle diagnostic tasks were identified: (1) a lung section containing a sub-centimeter nodule of ground-glass opacity in an upper lung (2) a mediastinal section with a lymph node of soft tissue density in the mediastinum; (3) a liver section with a rounded low attenuation lesion in the liver periphery. Each observer was asked to estimate the probability of detecting each type of lesion in the appropriate CT section using a six-point scale ranging from 1 (< 10%) to 6 (> 90%). Traditional and task dependent measures of image quality were plotted as a function of patient weight. For the lung section, task dependent evaluations were very similar to those obtained using the traditional scoring scheme, but with larger inter-observer differences. Task dependent evaluations for the mediastinal section showed no obvious trend with subject weight, whereas there the traditional score decreased from ~4.9 for smaller subjects to ~3.3 for the larger subjects. Task dependent evaluations for the liver section showed a decreasing trend from ~4.1 for the smaller subjects to ~1.9 for the larger subjects, whereas the traditional evaluation had a markedly narrower range of scores. A task-dependent method of assessing CT image quality can be implemented with relative ease, and is likely to be more meaningful in the clinical setting.

  10. Reliability and Validity of Dual-Task Mobility Assessments in People with Chronic Stroke

    PubMed Central

    Yang, Lei; He, Chengqi; Pang, Marco Yiu Chung

    2016-01-01

    Background The ability to perform a cognitive task while walking simultaneously (dual-tasking) is important in real life. However, the psychometric properties of dual-task walking tests have not been well established in stroke. Objective To assess the test-retest reliability, concurrent and known-groups validity of various dual-task walking tests in people with chronic stroke. Design Observational measurement study with a test-retest design. Methods Eighty-eight individuals with chronic stroke participated. The testing protocol involved four walking tasks (walking forward at self-selected and maximal speed, walking backward at self-selected speed, and crossing over obstacles) performed simultaneously with each of the three attention-demanding tasks (verbal fluency, serial 3 subtractions or carrying a cup of water). For each dual-task condition, the time taken to complete the walking task, the correct response rate (CRR) of the cognitive task, and the dual-task effect (DTE) for the walking time and CRR were calculated. Forty-six of the participants were tested twice within 3–4 days to establish test-retest reliability. Results The walking time in various dual-task assessments demonstrated good to excellent reliability [Intraclass correlation coefficient (ICC2,1) = 0.70–0.93; relative minimal detectable change at 95% confidence level (MDC95%) = 29%-45%]. The reliability of the CRR (ICC2,1 = 0.58–0.81) and the DTE in walking time (ICC2,1 = 0.11–0.80) was more varied. The reliability of the DTE in CRR (ICC2,1 = -0.31–0.40) was poor to fair. The walking time and CRR obtained in various dual-task walking tests were moderately to strongly correlated with those of the dual-task Timed-up-and-Go test, thus demonstrating good concurrent validity. None of the tests could discriminate fallers (those who had sustained at least one fall in the past year) from non-fallers. Limitation The results are generalizable to community-dwelling individuals with chronic stroke only

  11. Tactical expertise assessment in youth football using representative tasks.

    PubMed

    Serra-Olivares, Jaime; Clemente, Filipe Manuel; González-Víllora, Sixto

    2016-01-01

    Specific football drills improve the development of technical/tactical and physical variables in players. Based on this principle, in recent years it has been possible to observe in daily training a growing volume of small-sided and conditioned games. These games are smaller and modified forms of formal games that augment players' perception of specific tactics. Despite this approach, the assessment of players' knowledge and tactical execution has not been well documented, due mainly to the difficulty in measuring tactical behavior. For that reason, this study aims to provide a narrative review about the tactical assessment of football training by using representative tasks to measure the tactical expertise of youth football players during small-sided and conditioned games. This study gives an overview of the ecological approach to training and the principles used for representative task design, providing relevant contribution and direction for future research into the assessment of tactical expertise in youth football. PMID:27547675

  12. Assessment of Subtraction Scene Understanding Using a Story-Generation Task

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Kinda, Shigehiro

    2010-01-01

    The present study used a new assessment technique, the story-generation task, to examine students' understanding of subtraction scenes. The students from four grade levels (110 first-, 107 third-, 110 fourth- and 119 sixth-graders) generated stories under the constraints provided by a picture (representing Change, Combine or Compare scene) and a…

  13. The Stoplight Task: A Procedure for Assessing Risk Taking in Humans

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Reilly, Mark P.; Greenwald, Mark K.; Johanson, Chris-Ellyn

    2006-01-01

    The Stoplight Task, a procedure involving a computer analog of a stoplight, was evaluated for assessing risk taking in humans. Seventeen participants earned points later exchangeable for money by completing a response requirement before the red light appeared on a simulated traffic light. The green light signaled to start responding; it changed to…

  14. Pilot task-based assessment of noise levels among firefighters

    PubMed Central

    Neitzel, RL; Hong, O; Quinlan, P; Hulea, R

    2012-01-01

    PURPOSE Over one million American firefighters are routinely exposed to various occupational hazards agents. While efforts have been made to identify and reduce some causes of injuries and illnesses among firefighters, relatively little has been done to evaluate and understand occupational noise exposures in this group. The purpose of this pilot study was to apply a task-based noise exposure assessment methodology to firefighting operations to evaluate potential noise exposure sources, and to use collected task-based noise levels to create noise exposure estimates for evaluation of risk of noise-induced hearing loss by comparison to the 8-hr and 24-hr recommended exposure limits (RELs) for noise of 85 and 80.3 dBA, respectively. METHODS Task-based noise exposures (n=100 measurements) were measured in three different fire departments (a rural department in Southeast Michigan and suburban and urban departments in Northern California). These levels were then combined with time-at-task information collected from firefighters to estimate 8-hr noise exposures for the rural and suburban fire departments (n=6 estimates for each department). Data from 24-hr dosimetry measurements and crude self-reported activity categories from the urban fire department (n=4 measurements) were used to create 24-hr exposure estimates to evaluate the bias associated with the task-based estimates. RESULTS Task-based noise levels were found to range from 82–109 dBA, with the highest levels resulting from use of saws and pneumatic chisels. Some short (e.g., 30 min) sequences of common tasks were found to result in nearly an entire allowable daily exposure. The majority of estimated 8-hr and 24-hr exposures exceeded the relevant recommended exposure limit. Predicted 24-hr exposures showed substantial imprecision in some cases, suggesting the need for increased task specificity. CONCLUSIONS The results indicate potential for overexposure to noise from a variety of firefighting tasks and

  15. Global Change Assessment Model (GCAM)

    EPA Science Inventory

    The Global Change Assessment Model (GCAM) is an integrated assessment model that links the world's energy, agriculture and land use systems with a climate model. The model is designed to assess various climate change policies and technology strategies for the globe over long tim...

  16. Marginal neurofunctional changes in high-performing older adults in a verbal fluency task.

    PubMed

    Marsolais, Yannick; Methqal, Ikram; Joanette, Yves

    2015-01-01

    The maintenance of a high level of performance in aging has often been associated with changes in cerebral activations patterns for various cognitive components. However, relatively few studies have investigated this phenomenon in light of lexical speech production abilities, which have not been systematically found to benefit from neurofunctional reorganization during verbal fluency tasks. In this study, functional magnetic resonance imaging was used to assess overt self-paced semantic and orthographic verbal fluency tasks performed by healthy younger and older adults within a mixed block/event-related fMRI design. Behavioral results indicated similarly high levels of performance between tasks and age groups, while whole brain analysis revealed significant task-related differences in patterns of brain activity, but no significant effect of age or task-by-age interaction across the speech conditions. Only local activity differences were found between age groups. These marginal neurofunctional changes in high-performing older adults are discussed in terms of task demands. PMID:25461916

  17. Assessment Training Effects on Student Assessment Skills and Task Performance in a Technology-Facilitated Peer Assessment

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Liu, Xiongyi; Li, Lan

    2014-01-01

    This study examines the impact of an assessment training module on student assessment skills and task performance in a technology-facilitated peer assessment. Seventy-eight undergraduate students participated in the study. The participants completed an assessment training exercise, prior to engaging in peer-assessment activities. During the…

  18. Assessment, Technology, and Change

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Clarke-Midura, Jody; Dede, Chris

    2010-01-01

    Despite three decades of advances in information and communications technology (ICT) and a generation of research on cognition and new pedagogical strategies, the field of assessment has not progressed much beyond paper-and-pencil item-based tests. Research has shown these instruments are not valid measures of sophisticated intellectual…

  19. Changes in neuromuscular function after tasks involving control of EMG versus torque feedback of the same duration.

    PubMed

    Place, Nicolas; Martin, Alain; Lepers, Romuald

    2006-02-01

    This study was designed to compare alterations in neuromuscular function after two tasks of similar duration involving the control of (1) torque level fixed at 40% maximal voluntary contraction (MVC) torque (torque task) and (2) EMG level when exerting 40% MVC torque on the knee extensor muscles. Ten healthy subjects volunteered to participate in two testing sessions separated by approximately 2 h. Contraction duration for the EMG task was fixed for each subject to the time to task failure of the torque task (104+/-20s). MVC, maximal voluntary activation level, muscle compound action potential (M-wave), peak twitch and potentiated peak doublet were assessed before and immediately after each task using electrical stimulation of the femoral nerve. Average EMG activity of quadriceps muscle increased (p<0.01) during the torque task from 27.7+/-5.4% to 46.2+/-19.3% maximal EMG, whereas torque decreased during the EMG task from 41.5+/-2.9% to 28.9+/-3.8% MVC torque. Alterations in MVC torque (p<0.01) and maximal voluntary activation level (p<0.05) were comparable at termination of the two tasks. Rate of perceived exertion was greater (p<0.05) at the end of the torque task compared to the EMG task. Despite the absence of change in the M-wave for either task, potentiated peak doublet was altered after the torque task (-18+/-14%, p<0.01), whereas there was no change after the EMG task (p>0.05). The absence of peripheral failure at the end of the EMG task could be attributed to (1) a lower intramuscular pressure allowing a lesser accumulation of metabolites and (2) a slower rate of PCr hydrolysis compared to the torque task. PMID:16260087

  20. Evaluation of a novel translational task for assessing emotional biases in different species.

    PubMed

    Anderson, Michael H; Hardcastle, Chloë; Munafò, Marcus R; Robinson, Emma S J

    2012-06-01

    Changes in the processing of emotional information are key features of affective disorders. Neuropsychological tests based on emotional faces or words are used to detect emotional/affective biases in humans, but these tests are not applicable to animal species. In the present study, we investigated whether a novel affective tone discrimination task (ATDT), developed to study emotion-related behaviour in rats, could also be used to quantify changes in affective states in humans. To date, the methods used in human neuropsychology have not been applicable to animal experiments. Participants completed a training session in which they learnt to discriminate specific tone frequencies and to correctly respond in order to gain emotionally valenced outcomes, to obtain rewards (money), or to avoid punishment (an aversive sound clip). During a subsequent test session, additional ambiguous probe tones were presented at frequencies intermediate between the reward and avoidance paired tones. At the end of the task, participants completed self-report questionnaires. All participants made more avoidance responses to the most ambiguous tone cues, suggesting a bias towards avoidance of punishment. Individual differences in the degrees of bias observed were correlated with anxiety measures, suggesting the task's sensitivity to differences in state anxiety within a healthy population. Further studies in clinical populations will be necessary to assess the task's sensitivity to pathological anxiety states. These data suggest that this affective tone discrimination task provides a novel method to study cognitive affective biases in different species, including humans, and offers a novel assessment to study anxiety. PMID:22183974

  1. Changes in the brain intrinsic organization in both on-task state and post-task resting state.

    PubMed

    Wang, Zhijiang; Liu, Jiming; Zhong, Ning; Qin, Yulin; Zhou, Haiyan; Li, Kuncheng

    2012-08-01

    The dynamic and robust characteristics of intrinsic functional connectivity of coherent spontaneous activity are critical for the brain functional stability and flexibility. Studies have demonstrated modulation of intrinsic connectivity within local spatial patterns during or after task performance, such as the default mode network (DMN) and task-specific networks. Moreover, recent studies have compared the global spatial pattern in different tasks or over time. However, it is still unclear how the large-scale intrinsic connectivity varies during and after a task. To better understand this issue, we conducted a functional MRI experiment over three sequential periods: an active semantic-matching task period and two rest periods, before and after the task respectively (namely, on-task state and pre-/post-task resting states), to detect task-driven effect on the dynamic large-scale intrinsic organization in both on-task state and post-task resting state. Three hierarchical levels were investigated, including (a) the whole brain small-world topology, (b) the whole pairwise functional connectivity patterns both within the DMN and between the DMN and other regions (i.e., the global/full DMN topography), and (c) the DMN nodal graph properties. The major findings are: (1) The large-scale small-world configuration of brain functional organization is robust, regardless of the behavioral state changing, while it varies adaptively with significantly higher local efficiency and lower global efficiency during the on-task state (P<0.05, Monte-Carlo corrected); (2) The DMN may be essentially engaged during both task and post-task processes with adaptively varied spatial patterns and nodal graph properties. The present study provides further insights into the robustness and plasticity of the brain intrinsic organization over states, which may be the basis of memory and learning in the brain. PMID:22569542

  2. Co-Constructional Task Analysis: Moving beyond Adult-Based Models to Assess Young Children's Task Performance

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Lee, Scott Weng Fai

    2013-01-01

    The assessment of young children's thinking competence in task performances has typically followed the novice-to-expert regimen involving models of strategies that adults use when engaged in cognitive tasks such as problem-solving and decision-making. Socio-constructivists argue for a balanced pedagogical approach between the adult and child…

  3. Selected component failure rate values from fusion safety assessment tasks

    SciTech Connect

    Cadwallader, L.C.

    1998-09-01

    This report is a compilation of component failure rate and repair rate values that can be used in magnetic fusion safety assessment tasks. Several safety systems are examined, such as gas cleanup systems and plasma shutdown systems. Vacuum system component reliability values, including large vacuum chambers, have been reviewed. Values for water cooling system components have also been reported here. The report concludes with the examination of some equipment important to personnel safety, atmospheres, combustible gases, and airborne releases of radioactivity. These data should be useful to system designers to calculate scoping values for the availability and repair intervals for their systems, and for probabilistic safety or risk analysts to assess fusion systems for safety of the public and the workers.

  4. Selected Component Failure Rate Values from Fusion Safety Assessment Tasks

    SciTech Connect

    Cadwallader, Lee Charles

    1998-09-01

    This report is a compilation of component failure rate and repair rate values that can be used in magnetic fusion safety assessment tasks. Several safety systems are examined, such as gas cleanup systems and plasma shutdown systems. Vacuum system component reliability values, including large vacuum chambers, have been reviewed. Values for water cooling system components have also been reported here. The report concludes with the examination of some equipment important to personnel safety, atmospheres, combustible gases, and airborne releases of radioactivity. These data should be useful to system designers to calculate scoping values for the availability and repair intervals for their systems, and for probabilistic safety or risk analysts to assess fusion systems for safety of the public and the workers.

  5. Creating a New Model for Mainstreaming Climate Change Adaptation for Critical Infrastructure: The New York City Climate Change Adaptation Task Force and the NYC Panel on Climate Change

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Rosenzweig, C.; Solecki, W. D.; Freed, A. M.

    2008-12-01

    The New York City Climate Change Adaptation Task Force, launched in August 2008, aims to secure the city's critical infrastructure against rising seas, higher temperatures and fluctuating water supplies projected to result from climate change. The Climate Change Adaptation Task Force is part of PlaNYC, the city's long- term sustainability plan, and is composed of over 30 city and state agencies, public authorities and companies that operate the region's roads, bridges, tunnels, mass transit, and water, sewer, energy and telecommunications systems - all with critical infrastructure identified as vulnerable. It is one of the most comprehensive adaptation efforts yet launched by an urban region. To guide the effort, Mayor Michael Bloomberg has formed the New York City Panel on Climate Change (NPCC), modeled on the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC). Experts on the panel include climatologists, sea-level rise specialists, adaptation experts, and engineers, as well as representatives from the insurance and legal sectors. The NPCC is developing planning tools for use by the Task Force members that provide information about climate risks, adaptation and risk assessment, prioritization frameworks, and climate protection levels. The advisory panel is supplying climate change projections, helping to identify at- risk infrastructure, and assisting the Task Force in developing adaptation strategies and guidelines for design of new structures. The NPCC will also publish an assessment report in 2009 that will serve as the foundation for climate change adaptation in the New York City region, similar to the IPCC reports. Issues that the Climate Change Adaptation Task Force and the NPCC are addressing include decision- making under climate change uncertainty, effective ways for expert knowledge to be incorporated into public actions, and strategies for maintaining consistent and effective attention to long-term climate change even as municipal governments cycle

  6. Variations in Articulatory Movement with Changes in Speech Task.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Tasko, Stephen M.; McClean, Michael D.

    2004-01-01

    Studies of normal and disordered articulatory movement often rely on the use of short, simple speech tasks. However, the severity of speech disorders can be observed to vary markedly with task. Understanding task-related variations in articulatory kinematic behavior may allow for an improved understanding of normal and disordered speech motor…

  7. Local state space temporal fluctuations: a methodology to reveal changes during a fatiguing repetitive task.

    PubMed

    Sanjari, Mohammad Ali; Arshi, Ahmad Reza; Parnianpour, Mohamad; Seyed-Mohseni, Saeedeh

    2010-10-01

    The effect of muscular fatigue on temporal and spectral features of muscle activities and motor performance, i.e., kinematics and kinetics, has been studied. It is of value to quantify fatigue related kinematic changes in biomechanics and sport sciences using simple measurements of joint angles. In this work, a new approach was introduced to extract kinematic changes from 2D phase portraits to study the fatigue adaptation patterns of subjects performing elbow repetitive movement. This new methodology was used to test the effect of load and repetition rate on the temporal changes of an elbow phase portrait during a dynamic iso-inertial fatiguing task. The local flow variation concept, which quantifies the trajectory shifts in the state space, was used to track the kinematic changes of an elbow repetitive fatiguing task in four conditions (two loads and two repetition rates). Temporal kinematic changes due to muscular fatigue were measured as regional curves for various regions of the phase portrait and were also expressed as a single curve to describe the total drift behavior of trajectories due to fatigue. Finally, the effect of load and repetition rate on the complexity of kinematic changes, measured by permutation entropy, was tested using analysis of variance with repeated measure design. Statistical analysis showed that kinematic changes fluctuated more (showed more complexity) under higher loads (p=0.014), but did not differ under high and low repetition rates (p=0.583). Using the proposed method, new features for complexity of kinematic changes could be obtained from phase portraits. The local changes of trajectories in epochs of time reflected the temporal kinematic changes in various regions of the phase portrait, which can be used for qualitative and quantitative assessment of fatigue adaptation of subjects and evaluation of the influence of task conditions (e.g., load and repetition rate) on kinematic changes. PMID:20887012

  8. Automatic shifts of attention in the Dimensional Change Card Sort task: subtle changes in task materials lead to flexible switching.

    PubMed

    Fisher, Anna V

    2011-01-01

    Two experiments tested a hypothesis that reducing demands on executive control in a Dimensional Change Card Sort task will lead to improved performance in 3-year-olds. In Experiment 1, the shape dimension was represented by two dissimilar values (stars and flowers), and the color dimension was represented by two similar values (red and pink). This configuration of stimuli rendered shape more salient than color. In Experiment 2, attentional weights of each dimension value were manipulated by using two versus four values to represent the dimensions of shape and color. The results indicated that increasing saliency of the postswitch dimension (Experiment 1) and reducing attentional weights of individual dimension values (Experiment 2) lead to a marked improvement in the postswitch sorting accuracy in 3-year-olds. PMID:20674930

  9. Supporting Change in Classroom Assessment

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Sato, Mistilina; Atkin, J. Myron

    2007-01-01

    Formative assessment has been receiving increasing attention in education. But from a classroom teacher's perspective, changing assessment practices is not always an easy, straightforward process. This article describes the experiences of five middle schools science teachers who met together weekly to exchange ideas about integrating formative…

  10. Congress Assesses Climate Change Paleodata

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bierly, Eugene W.

    2006-08-01

    The `hockey stick' graph of surfacetemperature change overthe past millennium and implicationsfor climate change assessments wasthe subject of two hearings held by the U.S.House of Representatives Energy and CommerceSubcommittee on Oversight andInvestigations, on 19 and 27 July. These hearingsmarked only the second time that thecommittee has discussed climate issuessince George W. Bush became president.

  11. Impact of changed positive and negative task-related brain activity on word-retrieval in aging

    PubMed Central

    Meinzer, M.; Seeds, L.; Flaisch, T.; Harnish, S.; Cohen, M.L.; McGregor, K.; Conway, T.; Benjamin, M.; Crosson, B.

    2010-01-01

    Previous functional imaging studies that compared activity patterns in older and younger adults during non-linguistic tasks found evidence for two phenomena: older participants usually show more pronounced task-related positive activity in the brain hemisphere that is not dominant for the task and less pronounced negative task-related activity in temporo-parietal and midline brain regions. The combined effects of these phenomena and the impact on word-retrieval, however, have not yet been assessed. We used functional magnetic resonance imaging to explore task-related positive (active task > baseline) and negative activity (baseline > active task) during semantic and phonemic verbal fluency tasks. Increased right-frontal positive activity during the semantic task and reduced negative activity in the right hemisphere during both tasks was associated with reduced performance in older subjects. No substantial relationship between changes in positive and negative activity was observed in the older participants, pointing towards two partially independent but potentially co-occurring processes. Underlying causes of the observed functional network inefficiency during word-retrieval in older adults need to be determined in the future. PMID:20696496

  12. Self-control assessments of capuchin monkeys with the rotating tray task and the accumulation task.

    PubMed

    Beran, Michael J; Perdue, Bonnie M; Rossettie, Mattea S; James, Brielle T; Whitham, Will; Walker, Bradlyn; Futch, Sara E; Parrish, Audrey E

    2016-08-01

    Recent studies of delay of gratification in capuchin monkeys using a rotating tray (RT) task have shown improved self-control performance in these animals in comparison to the accumulation (AC) task. In this study, we investigated whether this improvement resulted from the difference in methods between the rotating tray task and previous tests, or whether it was the result of greater overall experience with delay of gratification tasks. Experiment 1 produced similar performance levels by capuchins monkeys in the RT and AC tasks when identical reward and temporal parameters were used. Experiment 2 demonstrated a similar result using reward amounts that were more similar to previous AC experiments with these monkeys. In Experiment 3, monkeys performed multiple versions of the AC task with varied reward and temporal parameters. Their self-control behavior was found to be dependent on the overall delay to reward consumption, rather than the overall reward amount ultimately consumed. These findings indicate that these capuchin monkeys' self-control capacities were more likely to have improved across studies because of the greater experience they had with delay of gratification tasks. Experiment 4 and Experiment 5 tested new, task-naïve monkeys on both tasks, finding more limited evidence of self-control, and no evidence that one task was more beneficial than the other in promoting self-control. The results of this study suggest that future testing of this kind should focus on temporal parameters and reward magnitude parameters to establish accurate measures of delay of gratification capacity and development in this species and perhaps others. PMID:27298233

  13. Obstetric Ultrasound Simulator With Task-Based Training and Assessment.

    PubMed

    Liu, Li; Kutarnia, Jason; Belady, Petra; Pedersen, Peder C

    2015-10-01

    The increasing use of point-of-care (POC) ultrasound presents a challenge in providing efficient training to POC ultrasound users for whom formal training is not readily available. In response to this need, we developed an affordable compact laptop-based obstetric ultrasound training simulator. It offers a realistic scanning experience, task-based training, and performance assessment. The position and orientation of the sham transducer are tracked with 5 DoF on an abdomen-sized scan surface with the shape of a cylindrical segment. On the simulator, user interface is rendered a virtual torso whose body surface models the abdomen of the pregnant scan subject. A virtual transducer scans the virtual torso by following the sham transducer movements on the scan surface. A given 3-D training image volume is generated by combining several overlapping 3-D ultrasound sweeps acquired from the pregnant scan subject using a Markov random field-based approach. Obstetric ultrasound training is completed through a series of tasks, guided by the simulator and focused on three aspects: basic medical ultrasound, orientation to obstetric space, and fetal biometry. The scanning performance is automatically evaluated by comparing user-identified anatomical landmarks with reference landmarks preinserted by sonographers. The simulator renders 2-D ultrasound images in real time with 30 frames/s or higher with good image quality; the training procedure follows standard obstetric ultrasound protocol. Thus, for learners without access to formal sonography programs, the simulator is intended to provide structured training in basic obstetrics ultrasound. PMID:25993700

  14. Task-based assessment and optimization of digital breast tomosynthesis

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Young, Stefano

    Digital breast tomosynthesis (DBT) is a new technology for breast cancer screening that promises to complement mammography or supersede it to become the standard for breast imaging. DBT involves taking multiple images in order to synthesize a new image that represents a slice through the breast volume---hence the term tomosynthesis. The primary advantage of this paradigm is that it can reduce the amount of overlapping anatomy in the data, leading to improved visualization of potentially-cancerous findings. The difficulty in DBT is quantifying the advantages of the technology and determining the optimal conditions for its clinical use. This dissertation describes a virtual trial framework for assessing and optimizing DBT technology for the specific task of detecting small, low-contrast masses in the breast. It addresses each component of the imaging chain to some degree, from the patients/phantoms to the imaging hardware to the model observers used to measure signal detectability. The main focus, however, is on quantifying tradeoffs between three key parameters that affect image quality: (1) scan angle, (2) number of projections, and (3) exposure. We show that in low-density breast phantoms, detectability generally increases with both scan angle and number of projections in the anatomical-variability-limited (high-exposure) regime. We also investigate how breast density affects the optimal DBT scan parameters. We show task-specific results that support using an adaptive paradigm in DBT, where the imaging system reconfigures itself in response to information about the patient's breast density. The virtual framework described in this dissertation provides a platform for further investigations of image quality in 3D breast imaging.

  15. Walking while Performing Working Memory Tasks Changes the Prefrontal Cortex Hemodynamic Activations and Gait Kinematics

    PubMed Central

    Lin, Ming-I B.; Lin, Kuan-Hung

    2016-01-01

    Background: Increasing evidence suggests that walking while performing a concurrent task negatively influences gait performance. However, it remains unclear how higher-level cognitive processes and coordination of limb movements are altered in challenging walking environments. This study investigated the influence of cognitive task complexity and walking road condition on the neutral correlates of executive function and postural control in dual-task walking. Methods: Twenty-four healthy young adults completed a series of overground walks with three walking road conditions (wide, narrow, with obstacles) with and without the concurrent n-back working memory tasks of two complexity levels (1-back and 3-back). Prefrontal brain activation was assessed by functional near-infrared spectroscopy. A three-dimensional motion analysis system was used simultaneously to measure gait performance and lower-extremity kinematics. Repeated measures analysis of variance were performed to examine the differences between the conditions. Results: In comparison with standing still, participants showed lower n-back task accuracy while walking, with the worst performance from the road with obstacles. Spatiotemporal gait parameters, lower-extremity joint movements, and the relative changes in oxygenated hemoglobin (HbO) concentration levels were all significantly different across the task complexity and walking path conditions. While dual-tasking participants were found to flex their hips and knees less, leading to a slower gait speed, longer stride time, shorter step length, and greater gait variability than during normal walking. For narrow-road walking, smaller ankle dorsiflexion and larger hip flexion were observed, along with a reduced gait speed. Obstacle negotiation was mainly characterized by increased gait variability than other conditions. HbO levels appeared to be lower during dual-task walking than normal walking. Compared to wide and obstacle conditions, walking on the narrow

  16. Changing students' attitudes towards risky motor tasks: an application of the IZOF model.

    PubMed

    Robazza, Claudio; Bortoli, Laura

    2005-10-01

    The aim of this study was to evaluate the effectiveness of an intervention programme in the physical education setting designed to change attitudes and emotions triggered by potentially risky motor tasks. The individual zones of optimal functioning (IZOF) model was used as a theoretical framework for the study. Italian male and female high school students (N = 84) took part in a 12 lesson intervention and in test-retest sessions. The assessment was conducted using the Motor Activity Anxiety Test to measure the students' approach-avoidance attitudes in the face of physical education tasks purported to engender strong emotional reactions. An idiosyncratic emotional profile was also implemented using a list of pleasant/unpleasant emotional adjectives. Two experimental groups were involved in the learning and performing of several potentially risky, highly emotion-arousing tasks, while two control groups were engaged in low-risk team sports. According to the hypothesis of the study, the programme was effective in decreasing the students' avoidance tendencies towards thrilling tasks and in increasing optimal-pleasant emotions. Our findings also demonstrated the feasibility and utility of applying the IZOF model to the context of physical education. PMID:16194984

  17. Use of Task-Value Instructional Inductions for Facilitating Engagement and Conceptual Change

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Johnson, Marcus Lee; Sinatra, Gale M.

    2013-01-01

    This study explored the relationship between task values, engagement, and conceptual change. One hundred and sixty-six under graduate students were randomly assigned to one of three task value instructional inductions (utility, attainment, and control) to determine whether induced task values would result in different degrees of engagement and…

  18. Attention and Inhibition in Bilingual Children: Evidence from the Dimensional Change Card Sort Task

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Bialystok, Ellen; Martin, Michelle M.

    2004-01-01

    In a previous study, a bilingual advantage for preschool children in solving the dimensional change card sort task was attributed to superiority in inhibition of attention (Bialystok, 1999). However, the task includes difficult representational demands to encode and interpret the task stimuli, and bilinguals may also have profited from superior…

  19. Interactive E-Assessment--Practical Approaches to Constructing More Sophisticated Online Tasks

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Crisp, Geoffrey

    2010-01-01

    This paper will explore some of the practical options that are available to teachers as we move towards Assessment 2.0. Assessment 2.0 describes an environment in which the teacher sets tasks that allow students to use more dynamic, immersive and interactive environments for exploring and creating responses to sophisticated assessment tasks.…

  20. A Framework for Determining the Authenticity of Assessment Tasks: Applied to an Example in Law

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Burton, Kelley

    2011-01-01

    Authentic assessment tasks enhance engagement, retention and the aspirations of students. This paper explores the discipline-generic features of authentic assessment, which reflect what students need to achieve in the real world. Some assessment tasks are more authentic than others and this paper designs a proposed framework supported by the…

  1. Videogame training strategy-induced change in brain function during a complex visuomotor task.

    PubMed

    Lee, Hyunkyu; Voss, Michelle W; Prakash, Ruchika Shaurya; Boot, Walter R; Vo, Loan T K; Basak, Chandramallika; Vanpatter, Matt; Gratton, Gabriele; Fabiani, Monica; Kramer, Arthur F

    2012-07-01

    Although changes in brain function induced by cognitive training have been examined, functional plasticity associated with specific training strategies is still relatively unexplored. In this study, we examined changes in brain function during a complex visuomotor task following training using the Space Fortress video game. To assess brain function, participants completed functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) before and after 30 h of training with one of two training regimens: Hybrid Variable-Priority Training (HVT), with a focus on improving specific skills and managing task priority, or Full Emphasis Training (FET), in which participants simply practiced the game to obtain the highest overall score. Control participants received only 6 h of FET. Compared to FET, HVT learners reached higher performance on the game and showed less brain activation in areas related to visuo-spatial attention and goal-directed movement after training. Compared to the control group, HVT exhibited less brain activation in right dorsolateral prefrontal cortex (DLPFC), coupled with greater performance improvement. Region-of-interest analysis revealed that the reduction in brain activation was correlated with improved performance on the task. This study sheds light on the neurobiological mechanisms of improved learning from directed training (HVT) over non-directed training (FET), which is related to visuo-spatial attention and goal-directed motor planning, while separating the practice-based benefit, which is related to executive control and rule management. PMID:22504276

  2. Description and Prediction of Age-Related Change in Everyday Task Performance.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Marsiske, Michael; Willis, Sherry L.

    Traditionally, assessment of the cognitive competencies of older adults has focused on abstract laboratory tests, which have often seemed quite unlike the demands of tasks encountered in everyday activities. Consequently, external validity of these laboratory tasks has been questioned, and their utility for assessing real-world competence has been…

  3. An Assessment of Caribbean Integrated Science Textbooks' Practical Tasks.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Soyibo, Kola

    1998-01-01

    Analyzes the structure and skill level of the tasks in the practical activities prescribed in eight process-oriented integrated science textbooks for Caribbean students in grades seven through nine. Results indicate that most of the tasks are structured and deductive in approach. Contains 42 references. (DDR)

  4. Assessing and Increasing Staff Preference for Job Tasks Using Concurrent-Chains Schedules and Probabilistic Outcomes

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Reed, Derek D.; DiGennaro Reed, Florence D.; Campisano, Natalie; Lacourse, Kristen; Azulay, Richard L.

    2012-01-01

    The assessment and improvement of staff members' subjective valuation of nonpreferred work tasks may be one way to increase the quality of staff members' work life. The Task Enjoyment Motivation Protocol (Green, Reid, Passante, & Canipe, 2008) provides a process for supervisors to identify the aversive qualities of nonpreferred job tasks. Through…

  5. Theory of Mind in Williams Syndrome Assessed Using a Nonverbal Task

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Porter, Melanie A.; Coltheart, Max; Langdon, Robyn

    2008-01-01

    This study examined Theory of Mind in Williams syndrome (WS) and in normal chronological age-matched and mental age-matched control groups, using a picture sequencing task. This task assesses understanding of pretence, intention and false belief, while controlling for social-script knowledge and physical cause-and-effect reasoning. The task was…

  6. The Time on Task Effect in Reading and Problem Solving Is Moderated by Task Difficulty and Skill: Insights from a Computer-Based Large-Scale Assessment

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Goldhammer, Frank; Naumann, Johannes; Stelter, Annette; Tóth, Krisztina; Rölke, Heiko; Klieme, Eckhard

    2014-01-01

    Computer-based assessment can provide new insights into behavioral processes of task completion that cannot be uncovered by paper-based instruments. Time presents a major characteristic of the task completion process. Psychologically, time on task has 2 different interpretations, suggesting opposing associations with task outcome: Spending more…

  7. Assessment of Spatial Navigation and Docking Performance During Simulated Rover Tasks

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Wood, S. J.; Dean, S. L.; De Dios, Y. E.; Moore, S. T.

    2010-01-01

    INTRODUCTION: Following long-duration exploration transits, pressurized rovers will enhance surface mobility to explore multiple sites across Mars and other planetary bodies. Multiple rovers with docking capabilities are envisioned to expand the range of exploration. However, adaptive changes in sensorimotor and cognitive function may impair the crew s ability to safely navigate and perform docking tasks shortly after transition to the new gravitoinertial environment. The primary goal of this investigation is to quantify post-flight decrements in spatial navigation and docking performance during a rover simulation. METHODS: Eight crewmembers returning from the International Space Station will be tested on a motion simulator during four pre-flight and three post-flight sessions over the first 8 days following landing. The rover simulation consists of a serial presentation of discrete tasks to be completed within a scheduled 10 min block. The tasks are based on navigating around a Martian outpost spread over a 970 sq m terrain. Each task is subdivided into three components to be performed as quickly and accurately as possible: (1) Perspective taking: Subjects use a joystick to indicate direction of target after presentation of a map detailing current orientation and location of the rover with the task to be performed. (2) Navigation: Subjects drive the rover to the desired location while avoiding obstacles. (3) Docking: Fine positioning of the rover is required to dock with another object or align a camera view. Overall operator proficiency will be based on how many tasks the crewmember can complete during the 10 min time block. EXPECTED RESULTS: Functionally relevant testing early post-flight will develop evidence regarding the limitations to early surface operations and what countermeasures are needed. This approach can be easily adapted to a wide variety of simulated vehicle designs to provide sensorimotor assessments for other operational and civilian populations.

  8. Assessment Engineering Task Model Maps, Task Models and Templates as a New Way to Develop and Implement Test Specifications

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Luecht, Richard M.

    2013-01-01

    Assessment engineering is a new way to design and implement scalable, sustainable and ideally lower-cost solutions to the complexities of designing and developing tests. It represents a merger of sorts between cognitive task modeling and engineering design principles--a merger that requires some new thinking about the nature of score scales, item…

  9. Modeling the Psychometric Properties of Complex Performance Assessment Tasks Using Confirmatory Factor Analysis: A Multistage Model for Calibrating Tasks

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Kahraman, Nilufer; De Champlain, Andre; Raymond, Mark

    2012-01-01

    Item-level information, such as difficulty and discrimination are invaluable to the test assembly, equating, and scoring practices. Estimating these parameters within the context of large-scale performance assessments is often hindered by the use of unbalanced designs for assigning examinees to tasks and raters because such designs result in very…

  10. Voice command and the change of mental representation during task performance

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Amalberti, R.; Batejat, D.; Menu, J.-P.

    1987-02-01

    A two task experiment was performed to assess the distribution of mental resources and the competition between mental and speaking resources during task performance. The experiment was designed so that a primary surveillance/detection task was performed along with a secondary task involving the input of flight related information by either keyboard or voice command. Detection time was measured for the primary task and accuracy was determined for both the primary and secondary tasks. Quantitative results show that the use of voice command favors the performance of the primary surveillance task, but, for the secondary task, the voice input was less accurate than the manual keyboard input. Qualitative results with regard to pilot visual comportment and vocal errors are also discussed.

  11. Photomontage: A New Task to Change Speaking into Talking Classrooms

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Hassaskhah, Jaleh; Asli, Shohreh Rahimizadeh

    2015-01-01

    This study introduces photomontage as a task to facilitate talking in English as a Foreign Language classrooms. Thirty-three undergraduate English major students studying at the University of Guilan were assigned to design a composite photographic image by combining images from separate photographic sources, and use it as the stimulus to initiate…

  12. Naturalistic Assessment of Everyday Functioning in Individuals with Mild Cognitive Impairment: The Day Out Task

    PubMed Central

    Schmitter-Edgecombe, Maureen; McAlister, Courtney; Weakley, Alyssa

    2012-01-01

    Objective The Day Out Task (DOT), a naturalistic task that requires multitasking in a real-world setting, was used to examine everyday functioning in individuals with mild cognitive impairment (MCI). Method Thirty-eight participants with MCI and 38 cognitively healthy older adult controls prioritized, organized, initiated and completed a number of subtasks in a campus apartment to prepare for a day out (e.g., determine and gather change for bus, bring a magazine). Participants also completed tests assessing cognitive constructs important in multitasking (i.e., retrospective memory, prospective memory, planning). Results Compared to controls, the MCI group required more time to complete the DOT and demonstrated poorer task accuracy, performing more subtasks incompletely and inaccurately. Despite poorer DOT task accuracy, the MCI and control groups approached completion of the DOT in a similar manner. For the MCI group, retrospective memory was a unique predictor of the number of subtasks left incomplete and inaccurate, while prospective memory was a unique predictor of DOT sequencing. The DOT measures, but not the cognitive tests, were predictive of knowledgeable informant report of everyday functioning. Conclusions These findings suggest that difficulty remembering and keeping track of multiple goals and subgoals may contribute to the poorer performance of individuals with MCI in complex everyday situations. PMID:22846035

  13. Crop Identification Technolgy Assessment for Remote Sensing (CITARS). Volume 1: Task design plan

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Hall, F. G.; Bizzell, R. M.

    1975-01-01

    A plan for quantifying the crop identification performances resulting from the remote identification of corn, soybeans, and wheat is described. Steps for the conversion of multispectral data tapes to classification results are specified. The crop identification performances resulting from the use of several basic types of automatic data processing techniques are compared and examined for significant differences. The techniques are evaluated also for changes in geographic location, time of the year, management practices, and other physical factors. The results of the Crop Identification Technology Assessment for Remote Sensing task will be applied extensively in the Large Area Crop Inventory Experiment.

  14. Electroencephalographic changes during piano playing and related mental tasks.

    PubMed

    Katayama, S; Hori, Y; Inokuchi, S; Hirata, T; Hayashi, Y

    1992-02-01

    Theta activity in EEG was found to be augmented in the frontal midline area in 5 young women while they played classical piano pieces and during related mental tasks. This activity was considered to be a frontal midline theta rhythm with the maximal amplitude mostly in Fz and of the frequency ranging from 5 to 7.5 Hz. This theta activity was observed to increase depending on the degree of the subjects' concentration on piano playing or related tasks. In bilateral parietal derivations, increases in the power value of alpha activity were observed in some subjects while they were listening to music, suggesting that alpha activity was involved in appreciation of music. PMID:1561902

  15. The Differential Effects of Task Complexity on Domain-Specific and Peer Assessment Skills

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    van Zundert, Marjo J.; Sluijsmans, Dominique M. A.; Konings, Karen D.; van Merrienboer, Jeroen J. G.

    2012-01-01

    In this study the relationship between domain-specific skills and peer assessment skills as a function of task complexity is investigated. We hypothesised that peer assessment skills were superposed on domain-specific skills and will therefore suffer more when higher cognitive load is induced by increased task complexity. In a mixed factorial…

  16. Creating Opportunities for Students to Show What They Know: The Role of Scaffolding in Assessment Tasks

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Kang, Hosun; Thompson, Jessica; Windschitl, Mark

    2014-01-01

    This study examines the ways in which teachers provide students with written scaffolds in assessment tasks and the impact of these on students' abilities to demonstrate a core disciplinary proficiency--constructing evidence-based explanations. Data include 76 assessment tasks designed by 33 science teachers and 707 samples of student work. We…

  17. Interactive Computer Based Assessment Tasks: How Problem-Solving Process Data Can Inform Instruction

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Zoanetti, Nathan

    2010-01-01

    This article presents key steps in the design and analysis of a computer based problem-solving assessment featuring interactive tasks. The purpose of the assessment is to support targeted instruction for students by diagnosing strengths and weaknesses at different stages of problem-solving. The first focus of this article is the task piloting…

  18. Improving Postswitch Performance in the Dimensional Change Card-Sorting Task: The Importance of the Switch and of Pretraining by Redescribing the Test Cards

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Mack, Wolfgang

    2007-01-01

    The dimensional change card-sorting task (DCCS) is used to assess the executive abilities of young children. Typically, 3-year-olds have difficulty in performing this task. However, the exact nature of this difficulty is still being debated. In the standard DCCS, children need to sort, for example, test cards with a blue flower or a red car into…

  19. A functional tracking task to assess frontal plane motor control in post stroke gait.

    PubMed

    Reissman, Megan E; Dhaher, Yasin Y

    2015-07-16

    The ability to execute appropriate medio-lateral foot placements during gait is thought to require active frontal plane control and to be critical in maintaining upright posture during gait. The aggregate frontal plane metrics of step width and step width variability have been assessed for post-stroke populations, but only under normal walking conditions. However, in the case of stroke, limb specific differences in sensory-motor control are likely. Thus, an investigation of limb specific motor control characteristics under tracking task conditions is needed to appropriately characterize frontal plane sensory-motor control post-stroke. Chronic stroke subjects (n=15) and age matched control subjects (n=10) tracked static, bilateral foot placement targets at self-selected walking speeds and completed a free walking trial. Variability and error of tracking performance were analyzed for step width and foot placement. Stroke subjects demonstrated reduced ability to control step width variability and foot placement variability, compared to control subjects. Step width variability and affected limb foot placement variability were sensitive to task complexity, increasing significantly in response to a decrease in step width target size. These results show that stroke mediated changes in the sensory-motor integration processes are manifested as inter-limb differences in frontal plane motor variability during a gait tracking task, with an additional sensitivity to task complexity. Additionally, the proposed step width tracking paradigm presents a clinically reproducible motor control metric that can be used for diagnostic assessment or as a potential outcome for a gait training regimen. PMID:26037229

  20. Assessing urban climate change resilience

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Voskaki, Asimina

    2016-04-01

    Recent extreme weather events demonstrate that many urban environments are vulnerable to climate change impacts and as a consequence designing systems for future climate seems to be an important parameter in sustainable urban planning. The focus of this research is the development of a theoretical framework to assess climate change resilience in urban environments. The methodological approach used encompasses literature review, detailed analysis, and combination of data, and the development of a series of evaluation criteria, which are further analyzed into a list of measures. The choice of the specific measures is based upon various environmental, urban planning parameters, social, economic and institutional features taking into consideration key vulnerabilities and risk associated with climate change. The selected criteria are further prioritized to incorporate into the evaluation framework the level of importance of different issues towards a climate change resilient city. The framework could support decision making as regards the ability of an urban system to adapt. In addition it gives information on the level of adaptation, outlining barriers to sustainable urban planning and pointing out drivers for action and reaction.

  1. Metabolic Assessment of Suited Mobility Using Functional Tasks

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Norcross, J. R.; McFarland, S. M.; Ploutz-Snyder, Robert

    2016-01-01

    Existing methods for evaluating extravehicular activity (EVA) suit mobility have typically focused on isolated joint range of motion or torque, but these techniques have little to do with how well a crewmember functionally performs in an EVA suit. To evaluate suited mobility at the system level through measuring metabolic cost (MC) of functional tasks.

  2. Objective assessment of sonographic quality I: task information.

    PubMed

    Nguyen, Nghia Q; Abbey, Craig K; Insana, Michael F

    2013-04-01

    In this paper, we explore relationships between the performance of the ideal observer and information-based measures of class separability in the context of sonographic breast-lesion diagnosis. This investigation was motivated by a finding that, since the test statistic of the ideal observer in sonography is a quadratic function of the echo data, it is not generally normally distributed. We found for some types of boundary discrimination tasks often required for sonographic lesion diagnosis, the deviation of the test statistic from a normal distribution can be significant. Hence the usual relationships between performance and information metrics become uncertain. Using Monte Carlo studies involving five common sonographic lesion-discrimination tasks, we found in each case that the detectability index d(A)(2) from receiver operating characteristic analysis was well approximated by the Kullback-Leibler divergence J, a measure of clinical task information available from the recorded radio-frequency echo data. However, the lesion signal-to-noise ratio, SNR(I)(2), calculated from moments of the ideal observer test statistic, consistently underestimates d(A)(2) for high-contrast boundary discrimination tasks. Thus, in a companion paper, we established a relationship between image-quality properties of the imaging system and J in order to predict ideal performance. These relationships provide a rigorous basis for sonographic instrument evaluation and design. PMID:23247846

  3. A Rubric to Self-Assess and Peer-Assess Mathematical Problem Solving Tasks of College Students

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Egodawatte, Gunawardena

    2010-01-01

    Student involvement in their own assessment can add reflection and metacognition to the learning process. Based on this idea, an assessment instrument was developed to self-assess college students' mathematical problem solving tasks. The main objective of this exercise is to improve student learning. The assessment instrument contains three items:…

  4. Simple statistical inference algorithms for task-dependent wellness assessment.

    PubMed

    Kailas, A; Chong, C-C; Watanabe, F

    2012-07-01

    Stress is a key indicator of wellness in human beings and a prime contributor to performance degradation and errors during various human tasks. The overriding purpose of this paper is to propose two algorithms (probabilistic and non-probabilistic) that iteratively track stress states to compute a wellness index in terms of the stress levels. This paper adopts the physiological view-point that high stress is accompanied with large deviations in biometrics such as body temperature, heart rate, etc., and the proposed algorithms iteratively track these fluctuations to compute a personalized wellness index that is correlated to the engagement levels of the tasks performed by the user. In essence, this paper presents a quantitative relationship between temperature, occupational stress, and wellness during different tasks. The simplicity of the statistical inference algorithms make them favorable candidates for implementation on mobile platforms such as smart phones in the future, thereby providing users an inexpensive application for self-wellness monitoring for a healthier lifestyle. PMID:22676998

  5. Changes in Self-Efficacy and Task Value in Online Learning

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Lee, Cheng-Yuan

    2015-01-01

    This study was designed to investigate whether course content self-efficacy, online technologies self-efficacy, and task value change over the course of a semester. Sixty-nine participating students from four classes provided data through two instruments: (1) the self-efficacy instrument and (2) the task value instrument. Students' self-efficacy…

  6. The Dynamics of Development on the Dimensional Change Card Sorting Task

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    van Bers, Bianca M. C. W.; Visser, Ingmar; van Schijndel, Tessa J. P.; Mandell, Dorothy J.; Raijmakers, Maartje E. J.

    2011-01-01

    A widely used paradigm to study cognitive flexibility in preschoolers is the Dimensional Change Card Sorting (DCCS) task. The developmental dynamics of DCCS performance was studied in a cross-sectional design (N = 93, 3 to 5 years of age) using a computerized version of the standard DCCS task. A model-based analysis of the data showed that…

  7. Motivation, intentionality, and mind wandering: Implications for assessments of task-unrelated thought.

    PubMed

    Seli, Paul; Cheyne, James Allan; Xu, Mengran; Purdon, Christine; Smilek, Daniel

    2015-09-01

    Researchers of mind wandering frequently assume that (a) participants are motivated to do well on the tasks they are given, and (b) task-unrelated thoughts (TUTs) that occur during task performance reflect unintentional, unwanted thoughts that occur despite participants' best intentions to maintain task-focus. Given the relatively boring and tedious nature of most mind-wandering tasks, however, there is the possibility that some participants have little motivation to do well on such tasks, and that this lack of motivation might in turn result in increases specifically in intentional TUTs. In the present study, we explored these possibilities, finding that individuals reporting lower motivation to perform well on a sustained-attention task reported more intentional relative to unintentional TUTs compared with individuals reporting higher motivation. Interestingly, our results indicate that the extent to which participants engage in intentional versus unintentional TUTs does not differentially relate to performance: both types of off-task thought were found to be equally associated with performance decrements. Participants with low levels of task-motivation also engaged in more overall TUTs, however, and this increase in TUTs was associated with greater performance decrements. We discuss these findings in the context of the literature on mind wandering, highlighting the importance of assessing the intentionality of TUTs and motivation to perform well on tasks assessing mind wandering. PMID:25730306

  8. Changes in Practice Schedule and Functional Task Difficulty: a Study Using the Probe Reaction Time Technique

    PubMed Central

    Akizuki, Kazunori; Ohashi, Yukari

    2013-01-01

    [Purpose] Motor learning is accelerated most by optimized task difficulty. When task difficulty is optimized, the amount of information required to complete the task matches the learner's information processing abilities. The practice schedule is one of the factors which changes the amount of task information. We investigated the influence of changes in practice schedule on the amount of task information using the probe reaction time technique. [Methods] Fourteen young male subjects were randomly assigned to a blocked or random practice group. They were required to perform two tasks simultaneously. The primary task consisted of treadmill walking with specific step lengths, and the secondary task consisted of a probe reaction time task. [Results] The blocked practice group was superior to the random practice group in performance during the acquisition phase. In contrast, the random practice group was superior to the blocked practice group in performance during the retention phase. Furthermore, the random practice group had a longer reaction time than the blocked practice group. [Conclusion] From the standpoint of the challenge point framework, motor learning may be accelerated by random practice because random practice probably elicits greater attentional demand than blocked practice. PMID:24259863

  9. Investigating Assessment Bias for Constructed Response Explanation Tasks: Implications for Evaluating Performance Expectations for Scientific Practice

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Federer, Meghan Rector

    frequently incorporate multivalent concepts into explanations of change, resulting in explanatory practices that were scientifically non-normative. However, use of follow-up question approaches was found to resolve this source of bias and thereby increase the validity of inferences about student understanding. The second study focused on issues of item and instrument structure, specifically item feature effects and item position effects, which have been shown to influence measures of student performance across assessment tasks. Results indicated that, along the instrument item sequence, items with similar surface features produced greater sequencing effects than sequences of items with dissimilar surface features. This bias could be addressed by use of a counterbalanced design (i.e., Latin Square) at the population level of analysis. Explanation scores were also highly correlated with student verbosity, despite verbosity being an intrinsically trivial aspect of explanation quality. Attempting to standardize student response length was one proposed solution to the verbosity bias. The third study explored gender differences in students' performance on constructed-response explanation tasks using impact (i.e., mean raw scores) and differential item function (i.e., item difficulties) patterns. While prior research in science education has suggested that females tend to perform better on constructed-response items, the results of this study revealed no overall differences in gender achievement. However, evaluation of specific item features patterns suggested that female respondents have a slight advantage on unfamiliar explanation tasks. That is, male students tended to incorporate fewer scientifically normative concepts (i.e., key concepts) than females for unfamiliar taxa. Conversely, females tended to incorporate more scientifically non-normative ideas (i.e., naive ideas) than males for familiar taxa. Together these results indicate that gender achievement differences for this

  10. Assessment at North Carolina State University: Adapting to Change in the Workplace

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Bresciani, Marilee J.; Griffiths, Jane H.; Rust, Jon P.

    2009-01-01

    Effectively introducing change in job responsibilities, particularly when dealing with tenured faculty, can be challenging. More often, additions or changes to work tasks, such as integrating assessment procedures into existing work tasks, requires employees to apply new and/or more complex knowledge, skill, and ability. When compared to…

  11. A 10-Year Assessment of Information and Communication Technology Tasks Required in Undergraduate Agriculture Courses

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Edgar, Leslie D.; Johnson, Donald M.; Cox, Casandra

    2012-01-01

    This study sought to assess required information and communication technology (ICT) tasks in selected undergraduate agriculture courses in a land-grant university during a 10-year period. Selected agriculture faculty members in the fall 1999 (n = 63), 2004 (n = 55), and 2009 (n = 64) semesters were surveyed to determine the ICT tasks they required…

  12. Assessing Abuse Risk beyond Self-Report: Analog Task of Acceptability of Parent-Child Aggression

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Rodriguez, Christina M.; Russa, Mary Bower; Harmon, Nancy

    2011-01-01

    Objectives: The present investigation reports on the development and initial validation of a new analog task, the Parent-Child Aggression Acceptability Movie Task (P-CAAM), intended to assess respondents' acceptance of parent-child aggression, including both physical discipline and physical abuse. Methods: Two independent samples were utilized to…

  13. A Review of the Validity of Laboratory Cognitive Tasks Used to Assess Symptoms of ADHD

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Nichols, Shana L.; Waschbusch, Daniel A.

    2004-01-01

    The authors of this article reviewed the validity of frequently used laboratory assessment measures of ADHD symptoms using research published since 1991. During this review, there was a strong emphasis on examining the validity of the tasks as they are commonly used by clinicians and researchers. Tasks evaluated included: the Continuous…

  14. Examining the Generalizability of Direct Writing Assessment Tasks. CSE Technical Report 718

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Chen, Eva; Niemi, David; Wang, Jia; Wang, Haiwen; Mirocha, Jim

    2007-01-01

    This study investigated the level of generalizability across a few high quality assessment tasks and the validity of measuring student writing ability using a limited number of essay tasks. More specifically, the research team explored how well writing prompts could measure student general writing ability and if student performance from one…

  15. The role of audience participation and task relevance on change detection during a card trick.

    PubMed

    Smith, Tim J

    2015-01-01

    Magicians utilize many techniques for misdirecting audience attention away from the secret sleight of a trick. One technique is to ask an audience member to participate in a trick either physically by asking them to choose a card or cognitively by having them keep track of a card. While such audience participation is an established part of most magic the cognitive mechanisms by which it operates are unknown. Failure to detect changes to objects while passively viewing magic tricks has been shown to be conditional on the changing feature being irrelevant to the current task. How change blindness operates during interactive tasks is unclear but preliminary evidence suggests that relevance of the changing feature may also play a role (Triesch et al., 2003). The present study created a simple on-line card trick inspired by Triesch et al.'s (2003) that allowed playing cards to be instantaneously replaced without distraction or occlusion as participants were either actively sorting the cards (Doing condition) or watching another person perform the task (Watching conditions). Participants were given one of three sets of instructions. The relevance of the card color to the task increased across the three instructions. During half of the trials a card changed color (but retained its number) as it was moving to the stack. Participants were instructed to immediately report such changes. Analysis of the probability of reporting a change revealed that actively performing the sorting task led to more missed changes than passively watching the same task but only when the changing feature was irrelevant to the sorting task. If the feature was relevant during either the pick-up or put-down action change detection was as good as during the watching block. These results confirm the ability of audience participation to create subtle dynamics of attention and perception during a magic trick and hide otherwise striking changes at the center of attention. PMID:25698986

  16. The role of audience participation and task relevance on change detection during a card trick

    PubMed Central

    Smith, Tim J.

    2015-01-01

    Magicians utilize many techniques for misdirecting audience attention away from the secret sleight of a trick. One technique is to ask an audience member to participate in a trick either physically by asking them to choose a card or cognitively by having them keep track of a card. While such audience participation is an established part of most magic the cognitive mechanisms by which it operates are unknown. Failure to detect changes to objects while passively viewing magic tricks has been shown to be conditional on the changing feature being irrelevant to the current task. How change blindness operates during interactive tasks is unclear but preliminary evidence suggests that relevance of the changing feature may also play a role (Triesch et al., 2003). The present study created a simple on-line card trick inspired by Triesch et al.’s (2003) that allowed playing cards to be instantaneously replaced without distraction or occlusion as participants were either actively sorting the cards (Doing condition) or watching another person perform the task (Watching conditions). Participants were given one of three sets of instructions. The relevance of the card color to the task increased across the three instructions. During half of the trials a card changed color (but retained its number) as it was moving to the stack. Participants were instructed to immediately report such changes. Analysis of the probability of reporting a change revealed that actively performing the sorting task led to more missed changes than passively watching the same task but only when the changing feature was irrelevant to the sorting task. If the feature was relevant during either the pick-up or put-down action change detection was as good as during the watching block. These results confirm the ability of audience participation to create subtle dynamics of attention and perception during a magic trick and hide otherwise striking changes at the center of attention. PMID:25698986

  17. Taking Teaching to (Performance) Task: Linking Pedagogical and Assessment Practices

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Chun, Marc

    2010-01-01

    Because most teaching is done in the classroom, most assessment of learning is done by faculty for their own courses. But since a college or university's collective learning goals, such as the development of higher-order thinking skills, are not the sole province of any single course or faculty member, the assessment of them needs to track the…

  18. Great Performances: Creating Classroom-Based Assessment Tasks. Second Edition

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Shoemaker, Betty; Lewin, Larry

    2011-01-01

    Get an in-depth understanding of how to create fun, engaging, and challenging performance assessments that require students to elaborate on content and demonstrate mastery of skills. This update of an ASCD (Association for Supervision and Curriculum Development) classic includes new scoring methods, reading assessments, and insights on navigating…

  19. The planetary water drama: Dual task of feeding humanity and curbing climate change

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Rockström, J.; Falkenmark, M.; Lannerstad, M.; Karlberg, L.

    2012-08-01

    This paper analyses the potential conflict between resilience of the Earth system and global freshwater requirements for the dual task of carbon sequestration to reduce CO2 in the atmosphere, and food production to feed humanity by 2050. It makes an attempt to assess the order of magnitude of the increased consumptive water use involved and analyses the implications as seen from two parallel perspectives; the global perspective of human development within a “safe operating space” with regard to the definition of the Planetary Boundary for freshwater; and the social-ecological implications at the regional river basin scale in terms of sharpening water shortages and threats to aquatic ecosystems. The paper shows that the consumptive water use involved in the dual task would both transgress the proposed planetary boundary range for global consumptive freshwater use and would further exacerbate already severe river depletion, causing societal problems related to water shortage and water allocation. Thus, strategies to rely on sequestration of CO2 as a mitigation strategy must recognize the high freshwater costs involved, implying that the key climate mitigation strategy must be to reduce emissions. The paper finally highlights the need to analyze both water and carbon tradeoffs from anticipated large scale biofuel production climate change mitigation strategy, to reveal gains and impact of this in contrast to carbon sequestration strategies.

  20. Changes in task demands alter the pattern of zif268 expression in the dentate gyrus.

    PubMed

    Satvat, Elham; Schmidt, Brandy; Argraves, Melissa; Marrone, Diano F; Markus, Etan J

    2011-05-11

    Granule cells of the dentate gyrus (DG) are thought to disambiguate similar experiences--a process termed pattern separation. Using zif268 as a marker of cellular activity, DG function was assessed in rats performing two tasks: a place task (go east) and a response task (turn right). As these tasks occurred within the same physical space (a plus maze) without any physical cue to indicate the correct strategy in a given trial, this scenario critically involves disambiguation of task demands and presumably pattern separation. Performance of the two tasks induced zif268 expression in distinct populations of granule cells within the suprapyramidal but not the infrapyramidal blade of the DG. Repeated performance of the same task (i.e., two response-task trials or two place-task trials), however, elicited zif268 expression within a single subset of the granule cell population. This differential transcription pattern shows that the retrieval of different behavioral strategies or mnemonic demands recruit distinct ensembles of granule cells, possibly to prevent interference between memories of events occurring within the same physical space to permit the selection of appropriate responses. PMID:21562279

  1. A methodology to assess performance of human-robotic systems in achievement of collective tasks

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Howard, Ayanna M.

    2005-01-01

    In this paper, we present a methodology to assess system performance of human-robotic systems in achievement of collective tasks such as habitat construction, geological sampling, and space exploration.

  2. An abbreviated task-oriented assessment (Bay Area Functional Performance Evaluation).

    PubMed

    Mann, W C; Huselid, R

    1993-02-01

    The purpose of this study was to explore development of an abbreviated version of the Task-Oriented Assessment component of the Bay Area Functional Performance Evaluation (BaFPE). The BaFPE is widely used by occupational therapists practicing in mental health, but therapists have requested an instrument that could be administered and scored more quickly. Both a subjective and objective analysis support the development of an abbreviated version of the Task-Oriented Assessment. PMID:8470740

  3. Exploring the Role of Assessment Tasks to Promote Formative Assessment in Key Stage 3 Geography: Evidence from Twelve Teachers

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Tiknaz, Yonca; Sutton, Alan

    2006-01-01

    The article focuses on the planning and implementation of interim assessment tasks in Key Stage 3 Geography. This research identifies three key dimensions which impact on the planning of assessment in the medium and long term. These are: teachers' emerging conceptualization of "formative assessment"; the statutory requirements for assessing…

  4. Performance assessment in complex individual and team tasks

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Eddy, Douglas R.

    1992-01-01

    Described here is an eclectic, performance based approach to assessing cognitive performance from multiple perspectives. The experience gained from assessing the effects of antihistamines and scenario difficulty on C (exp 2) decision making performance in Airborne Warning and Control Systems (AWACS) weapons director (WD) teams can serve as a model for realistic simulations in space operations. Emphasis is placed on the flexibility of measurement, hierarchical organization of measurement levels, data collection from multiple perspectives, and the difficulty of managing large amounts of data.

  5. A novel task assessing intention and emotion attribution: Italian standardization and normative data of the Story-based Empathy Task.

    PubMed

    Dodich, Alessandra; Cerami, Chiara; Canessa, Nicola; Crespi, Chiara; Iannaccone, Sandro; Marcone, Alessandra; Realmuto, Sabrina; Lettieri, Giada; Perani, Daniela; Cappa, Stefano F

    2015-10-01

    Theory of Mind (ToM), the process by which an individual imputes mental states to himself and others, is presently considered as a multidimensional cognitive domain, with two main facets (i.e., cognitive and affective ToM) accounting, respectively, for the ability to understand others' intention (intention attribution-IA) and emotions (emotion attribution-EA). Despite the large amount of literature investigating the behavioural and neural bases of mentalizing abilities in neurological conditions, there is still a lack of validated neuropsychological tools specifically designed to assess such skills. Here, we report the normative data of the Story-Based Empathy Task (SET), a non-verbal test developed for the assessment of intention and emotion attribution in the neurodegenerative conditions characterized by the impairment of social-emotional abilities. It is an easy-to-administer task including 18 stimuli, sub-grouped into two experimental conditions assessing, respectively, the ability to infer others' intentions (SET-IA) and emotions (SET-EA), compared to a control condition of causal inference (SET-CI). Normative data were collected in 136 Italian subjects pooled across subgroups homogenous for age (range 20-79 years), sex, and education (at least 5 years). The results show a detrimental effect of age and a beneficial effect of education on both the global score and each subscale, for which we provide correction grids. This new task could be a useful tool to investigate both affective and cognitive aspects of ToM in the course of disorders of socio-emotional behaviour, such as the fronto-temporal dementia spectrum. PMID:26072203

  6. The Functional Task Test (FTT): An Interdisciplinary Testing Protocol to Investigate the Factors Underlying Changes in Astronaut Functional Performance

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Bloomberg, J. J.; Lawrence, E. L.; Arzeno, N. M.; Buxton, R. E.; Feiveson, A. H.; Kofman, I. S.; Lee, S. M. C.; Mulavara, A. P.; Peters, B. T.; Platts. S. H.; Ploutz-Snyder, L. L.; Reschke, M. F.; Ryder, J. W.; Spiering, B. A.; Stenger, M. B.; Taylor, L. C.; Wood, S. J.

    2011-01-01

    Exposure to space flight causes adaptations in multiple physiological systems including changes in sensorimotor, cardiovascular, and neuromuscular systems. These changes may affect a crewmember s ability to perform critical mission tasks immediately after landing on a planetary surface. The overall goal of this project is to determine the effects of space flight on functional tests that are representative of high priority exploration mission tasks and to identify the key underlying physiological factors that contribute to decrements in performance. To achieve this goal we developed an interdisciplinary testing protocol (Functional Task Test, FTT) that evaluates both astronaut functional performance and related physiological changes. Functional tests include ladder climbing, hatch opening, jump down, manual manipulation of objects and tool use, seat egress and obstacle avoidance, recovery from a fall and object translation tasks. Physiological measures include assessments of postural and gait control, dynamic visual acuity, fine motor control, plasma volume, orthostatic intolerance, upper- and lower-body muscle strength, power, endurance, control, and neuromuscular drive. Crewmembers perform this integrated test protocol before and after short (Shuttle) and long-duration (ISS) space flight. Data are collected on two sessions before flight, on landing day (Shuttle only) and 1, 6 and 30 days after landing. Preliminary results from both Shuttle and ISS crewmembers indicate decrement in performance of the functional tasks after both short and long-duration space flight. On-going data collection continues to improve the statistical power required to map changes in functional task performance to alterations in physiological systems. The information obtained from this study will be used to design and implement countermeasures that specifically target the physiological systems most responsible for the altered functional performance associated with space flight.

  7. Job level risk assessment using task level ACGIH hand activity level TLV scores: a pilot study.

    PubMed

    Drinkaus, Phillip; Sesek, Richard; Bloswick, Donald S; Mann, Clay; Bernard, Thomas

    2005-01-01

    Existing upper extremity musculoskeletal disorder analytical tools are primarily intended for single or mono-task jobs. However, many jobs contain more than 1 task and some include job rotation. This case/control study investigates methods of modifying an existing tool, the American Conference of Governmental Industrial Hygienists (ACGIH) Hand Activity Level (HAL) Threshold Limit Value (TLV), to assess the upper extremity risk of multi-task jobs. Various methods of combining the task differences and ratios into a job level assessment were explored. Two methods returned significant odds ratios, (p < .05) of 18.0 (95% CI 1.8-172) and 12.0 (95% CI 1.2-120). These results indicate that a modified ACGIH HAL TLV may provide insight into the work-related risk of multi-task jobs. Further research is needed to optimize this process. PMID:16219155

  8. Using Single-Participant Research To Assess Counseling Approaches on Children's Off-Task Behavior.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Yarbrough, Jamie L.; Thompson, Charles L.

    2002-01-01

    Researches the efficacy of reality therapy and solution- focused brief counseling with elementary school students engaging in off-task behavior and demonstrates the utility of a single- participant design in conducting counseling research. Significant positive changes in the on-task behaviors of the students resulted from both approaches.…

  9. Training Self-Assessment and Task-Selection Skills: A Cognitive Approach to Improving Self-Regulated Learning

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Kostons, Danny; van Gog, Tamara; Paas, Fred

    2012-01-01

    For self-regulated learning to be effective, students need to be able to accurately assess their own performance on a learning task and use this assessment for the selection of a new learning task. Evidence suggests, however, that students have difficulties with accurate self-assessment and task selection, which may explain the poor learning…

  10. Development of Differentiated Performance Assessment Tasks for Middle School Classrooms.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Moon, Tonya R.; Callahan, Carolyn M.; Brighton, Catherine M.; Tomlinson, Carol A.

    In response to the greatly increased use of statewide high stakes testing, the National Research Center on the Gifted and Talented at the University of Virginia developed differentiated authentic assessments for middle school classroom use that embodied key concepts, principles, generalizations, and processes in the disciplines of English/language…

  11. Assessing Expertise in Introductory Physics Using Categorization Task

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Mason, Andrew; Singh, Chandralekha

    2011-01-01

    The ability to categorize problems based upon underlying principles, rather than surface features or contexts, is considered one of several proxy predictors of expertise in problem solving. With inspiration from the classic study by Chi, Feltovich, and Glaser, we assess the distribution of expertise among introductory physics students by asking…

  12. Assessing inhibitory control: a revised approach to the stop signal task.

    PubMed

    Carter, J D; Farrow, M; Silberstein, R B; Stough, C; Tucker, A; Pipingas, A

    2003-06-01

    The stop signal task (stop task) is designed to assess inhibitory control and is a frequently used research tool in clinical disorders such as ADHD and schizophrenia. Previous methods of setting stop signal delay and of assessing inhibitory control are problematic. The current study reports two modifications that improve the task as a measure of inhibitory control. The first modification was to set stop signal delays proportional to go mean reaction time (go MRT) to better account for inter-subject variability in go MRT. Twenty-eight normal children were tested, and all standard, stop task dependent measures were obtained when delays were set by this method. The second modification was to calculate a novel dependent measure called the area of inhibition (AOI) which provides a more complete measure of inhibitory control than the slope of the relative finishing time z-scores (ZRFT-slope). Implications for the assessment of inhibitory control in clinical populations are discussed. PMID:12931073

  13. Patterns of Resistance in Managing Assessment Change

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Deneen, Christopher; Boud, David

    2014-01-01

    Achieving change in assessment practices in higher education is difficult. One of the reasons for this is resistance among those responsible for teaching and assessing. This paper seeks to explore this resistance through an analysis of staff dialogue during a major attempt to change the assessment practices at one institution. An institution-wide…

  14. Practical Methodology of Cognitive Tasks Within a Navigational Assessment

    PubMed Central

    Robillard, Manon; Mayer-Crittenden, Chantal; Roy-Charland, Annie; Minor-Corriveau, Michèle; Bélanger, Roxanne

    2015-01-01

    This paper describes an approach for measuring navigation accuracy relative to cognitive skills. The methodology behind the assessment will thus be clearly outlined in a step-by-step manner. Navigational skills are important when trying to find symbols within a speech-generating device (SGD) that has a dynamic screen and taxonomical organization. The following skills have been found to impact children’s ability to find symbols when navigating within the levels of an SGD: sustained attention, categorization, cognitive flexibility, and fluid reasoning1,2. According to past studies, working memory was not correlated with navigation1,2. The materials needed for this method include a computerized tablet, an augmentative and alternative communication application, a booklet of symbols, and the Leiter International Performance Scale-Revised (Leiter-R)3. This method has been used in two previous studies. Robillard, Mayer-Crittenden, Roy-Charland, Minor-Corriveau and Bélanger1 assessed typically developing children, while Rondeau, Robillard and Roy-Charland2 assessed children and adolescents with a diagnosis of Autism Spectrum Disorder. The direct observation of this method will facilitate the replication of this study for researchers. It will also help clinicians that work with children who have complex communication needs to determine the children’s ability to navigate an SGD with taxonomical categorization. PMID:26065431

  15. New Congressional Climate Change Task Force Calls on President to Use Administrative Authority

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Showstack, Randy

    2013-02-01

    Spurred by U.S. congressional inaction on climate change and by President Barack Obama's comments on the topic in his 21 January inaugural address, several Democratic members of Congress announced at a Capitol Hill briefing the formation of a bicameral task force on climate change. In addition, they have called on the president to use his administrative authority to deal with the issue.

  16. Changes in the Spinal Neural Circuits are Dependent on the Movement Speed of the Visuomotor Task

    PubMed Central

    Kubota, Shinji; Hirano, Masato; Koizume, Yoshiki; Tanabe, Shigeo; Funase, Kozo

    2015-01-01

    Previous studies have shown that spinal neural circuits are modulated by motor skill training. However, the effects of task movement speed on changes in spinal neural circuits have not been clarified. The aim of this research was to investigate whether spinal neural circuits were affected by task movement speed. Thirty-eight healthy subjects participated in this study. In experiment 1, the effects of task movement speed on the spinal neural circuits were examined. Eighteen subjects performed a visuomotor task involving ankle muscle slow (nine subjects) or fast (nine subjects) movement speed. Another nine subjects performed a non-visuomotor task (controls) in fast movement speed. The motor task training lasted for 20 min. The amounts of D1 inhibition and reciprocal Ia inhibition were measured using H-relfex condition-test paradigm and recorded before, and at 5, 15, and 30 min after the training session. In experiment 2, using transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS), the effects of corticospinal descending inputs on the presynaptic inhibitory pathway were examined before and after performing either a visuomotor (eight subjects) or a control task (eight subjects). All measurements were taken under resting conditions. The amount of D1 inhibition increased after the visuomotor task irrespective of movement speed (P < 0.01). The amount of reciprocal Ia inhibition increased with fast movement speed conditioning (P < 0.01), but was unchanged by slow movement speed conditioning. These changes lasted up to 15 min in D1 inhibition and 5 min in reciprocal Ia inhibition after the training session. The control task did not induce changes in D1 inhibition and reciprocal Ia inhibition. The TMS conditioned inhibitory effects of presynaptic inhibitory pathways decreased following visuomotor tasks (P < 0.01). The size of test H-reflex was almost the same size throughout experiments. The results suggest that supraspinal descending inputs for controlling joint movement are responsible

  17. Using the Hand Laterality Judgement Task to Assess Motor Imagery: A Study of Practice Effects in Repeated Measurements

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Boonstra, Anne M.; de Vries, Sjoerd J.; Veenstra, Evelien; Tepper, Marga; Feenstra, Wya; Otten, Egbert

    2012-01-01

    The aim of this study was to determine whether there is a practice effect on the Hand Laterality Judgement Task (HLJT). The HLJT task is a mental rotation task that can be used to assess motor imagery ability in stroke patients. Thirty-three healthy individuals performed the HLJT and two control tasks twice at a 3-week interval. Differences in the…

  18. Effective Assessment and Institutional Change.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Cote, Christine Brooks; Jordan, Marianne

    2002-01-01

    Describes how assessment is tied tightly to program development at Bowdoin College, with assessment criteria set up during the process of faculty members' seeking funding for research or curriculum innovation. Uses the example of innovations in an introductory biology course to illustrate the process. (EV)

  19. Assessing Affect after Mathematical Problem Solving Tasks: Validating the Chamberlin Affective Instrument for Mathematical Problem Solving

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Chamberlin, Scott A.; Powers, Robert A.

    2013-01-01

    The focus of the article is the validation of an instrument to assess gifted students' affect after mathematical problem solving tasks. Participants were 225 students identified by their district as gifted in grades four to six. The Chamberlin Affective Instrument for Mathematical Problem Solving was used to assess feelings, emotions, and…

  20. Further Thoughts on "How Task Features Impact Evidence from Assessments Embedded in Simulations and Games"

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Oliveri, María Elena; Khan, Saad

    2014-01-01

    María Oliveri, and Saad Khan write that the article: "How Task Features Impact Evidence from Assessments Embedded in Simulations and Games" provided helpful illustrations regarding the implementation of evidence-centered assessment design (Mislevy & Haertel, 2006; Mislevy, Steinberg, & Almond, 1999) with games and simulations.…

  1. Design and Analysis in Task-Based Language Assessment. CSE Technical Report.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Mislevy, Robert J.; Steinberg, Linda S.; Almond, Russell G.

    Task-based language assessment (TBLA) grows from the observation that mastering the grammar and lexicon of a language is not sufficient for using a language to achieve ends in social situations. In TBLA, language use is observed in settings that are more realistic and complex than in discrete skills assessment and that typically require the…

  2. Contextualising Higher Education Assessment Task Words with an "'Anti'-Glossary" Approach

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Richards, Kendall; Pilcher, Nick

    2014-01-01

    Key "generic" assessment task words such as "discuss" and "critically evaluate" are integral to higher education assessment. Although sources such as study skills guides give generic decontextualised glossaries of these words, much research rightly argues for greater dialogue between students (particularly…

  3. Teacher Analysis of Student Knowledge (TASK): A Measure of Learning Trajectory-Oriented Formative Assessment

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Supovitz, Jonathan; Ebby, Caroline B.; Sirinides, Philip

    2013-01-01

    This interactive electronic report provides an overview of an innovative new instrument developed by researchers at the Consortium for Policy Research in Education (CPRE) to authentically measure teachers' formative assessment practices in mathematics. The Teacher Analysis of Student Knowledge, or TASK, instrument assesses mathematics…

  4. Canonical Correlational Models of Students' Perceptions of Assessment Tasks, Motivational Orientations, and Learning Strategies

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Alkharusi, Hussain

    2013-01-01

    The present study aims at deriving correlational models of students' perceptions of assessment tasks, motivational orientations, and learning strategies using canonical analyses. Data were collected from 198 Omani tenth grade students. Results showed that high degrees of authenticity and transparency in assessment were associated with positive…

  5. Increasing the on-task homework behavior of youth with behavior disorders using functional behavioral assessment.

    PubMed

    Hawkins, Renee O; Axelrod, Michael I

    2008-11-01

    Research has shown a positive correlation between time spent on homework and learning. However, students often engage in off-task behaviors to escape the demands of homework. Youth with emotional or behavioral disorders (EBD) are especially likely to engage in off-task behaviors. Effective interventions to increase on-task behavior during homework are needed to increase students' academic success. Functional behavioral assessment (FBA) procedures may be helpful for intervention planning; however, there has been limited research on use of FBA with youth with EBD experiencing poor academic performance or task completion problems. In the current study, FBA methods were used to identify the contingencies maintaining the off-task behavior of four youth with behavior problems. Effects of interventions based on functional hypotheses were compared to the effects of interventions not linked to such hypotheses. Discussion focuses on utility of FBA procedures for developing and implementing effective interventions for youth with EBD. PMID:18490267

  6. The California Teaching Performance Assessment Task for Assessing Student Learning: What Do Teacher Education Candidates Really Learn?

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Verdi, Michael P.; Riggs, Matt L.; Riggs, Iris M.

    2012-01-01

    A group of 87 teacher certification candidates in a program at a large university in Southern California took the California Teaching Performance Assessment task for assessing learners in 2004-2005. These candidates' tests were analyzed with qualitative research methods and their scores calculated with quantitative methods. Subsequently, three…

  7. Job level risk assessment using task level strain index scores: a pilot study.

    PubMed

    Drinkaus, Phillip; Bloswick, Donald S; Sesek, Richard; Mann, Clay; Bernard, Thomas

    2005-01-01

    This paper explores 2 methods of modifying the Strain Index (SI) to assess the ergonomic risk of multi-task jobs. Twenty-eight automotive jobs (15 cases and 13 controls) were studied. The first method is based on the maximum task SI score, and the second method is modeled on the NIOSH Composite Lifting Index (CLI) algorithm, named cumulative assessment of risk to the distal upper extremity (CARD). Significant odds ratios of 11 (CI 1.7-69) and 24 (CI 2.4-240) were obtained using the modified maximum task and CARD, respectively. This indicates that modification of the SI may be useful in determining the risk of distal upper extremity injury associated with a multi-task job. PMID:15938764

  8. Continuously Adaptive vs. Discrete Changes of Task Difficulty in the Training of a Complex Perceptual-Motor Task.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Wood, Milton E.

    The purpose of the effort was to determine the benefits to be derived from the adaptive training technique of automatically adjusting task difficulty as a function of a student skill during early learning of a complex perceptual motor task. A digital computer provided the task dynamics, scoring, and adaptive control of a second-order, two-axis,…

  9. Hemodynamic and affective correlates assessed during performance on the Columbia card task (CCT).

    PubMed

    Holper, Lisa; Murphy, Ryan O

    2014-12-01

    The study aimed to test the potential of functional near-infrared spectroscopy (fNIRS) in combination with electrodermal activity (EDA) in a decision paradigm by means of the Columbia card task (CCT). The CCT is a dynamic decision task characterized by assessing subjects' risk-taking via eliciting voluntary stopping points in a series of incrementally increasingly risky choices. Using the combined fNIRS-EDA approach, we aim to examine the hemodynamic and affective correlates of both decision and outcome responses during performance on the CCT. Twenty healthy subjects completed the Cold and Hot CCT version while fNIRS over prefrontal cortex and EDA were recorded. Results showed that (1) in the decision phase fNIRS revealed larger total hemoglobin concentration changes [tHb] in the Cold as compared to the Hot CCT, whereas EDA revealed an opposite pattern with larger skin conductance responses (SCRs) to the Hot as compared to the Cold CCT. (2) No significant [tHb] signals or SCRs were found in the outcome phase. (3) Coherence calculations between fNIRS and EDA in the heart rate frequency showed a significant increase during the Hot as compared to the Cold CCT. Our findings designate fNIRS as suitable tool for monitoring decision-making processes. The combination of fNIRS and EDA demonstrates the potential of simultaneously assessing the interaction between hemodynamic and affective responses which can provide additional information concerning the relationship between these two physiological systems for various research areas. PMID:24242358

  10. MnemoCity Task: Assessment of Childrens Spatial Memory Using Stereoscopy and Virtual Environments.

    PubMed

    Rodríguez-Andrés, David; Juan, M-Carmen; Méndez-López, Magdalena; Pérez-Hernández, Elena; Lluch, Javier

    2016-01-01

    This paper presents the MnemoCity task, which is a 3D application that introduces the user into a totally 3D virtual environment to evaluate spatial short-term memory. A study has been carried out to validate the MnemoCity task for the assessment of spatial short-term memory in children, by comparing the children's performance in the developed task with current approaches. A total of 160 children participated in the study. The task incorporates two types of interaction: one based on standard interaction and another one based on natural interaction involving physical movement by the user. There were no statistically significant differences in the results of the task using the two types of interaction. Furthermore, statistically significant differences were not found in relation to gender. The correlations between scores were obtained using the MnemoCity task and a traditional procedure for assessing spatial short-term memory. Those results revealed that the type of interaction used did not affect the performance of children in the MnemoCity task. PMID:27579715

  11. Constructivist Learning Environments and the (Im)possibility to Change Students' Perceptions of Assessment Demands and Approaches to Learning

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Gijbels, David; Segers, Mien; Struyf, Elke

    2008-01-01

    Recent research shows that, as students interpret the demands of the assessment tasks, they vary their approaches to learning in order to cope with the assessment tasks. Three research questions are central in the present paper: (1) Do students who participate in a constructivist learning environment change their perception of assessment demands…

  12. Communicating uncertainty: lessons learned and suggestions for climate change assessment

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Patt, Anthony; Dessai, Suraje

    2005-03-01

    Assessments of climate change face the task of making information about uncertainty accessible and useful to decision-makers. The literature in behavior economics provides many examples of how people make decisions under conditions of uncertainty relying on inappropriate heuristics, leading to inconsistent and counterproductive choices. Modern risk communication practices recommend a number of methods to overcome these hurdles, which have been recommended for the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) assessment reports. This paper evaluates the success of the most recent IPCC approach to uncertainty communication, based on a controlled survey of climate change experts. Evaluating the results from the survey, and from a similar survey recently conducted among university students, the paper suggests that the most recent IPCC approach leaves open the possibility for biased and inconsistent responses to the information. The paper concludes by suggesting ways to improve the approach for future IPCC assessment reports. To cite this article: A. Patt, S. Dessai, C. R. Geoscience 337 (2005).

  13. Working memory-related changes in functional connectivity persist beyond task disengagement

    PubMed Central

    Gordon, Evan M.; Breeden, Andrew L.; Bean, Stephanie E.; Vaidya, Chandan J.

    2013-01-01

    We examined whether altered connectivity in functional networks during working memory performance persists following conclusion of that performance, into a subsequent resting state. We conducted functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) in 50 young adults during an initial resting state, followed by an N-back working memory task and a subsequent resting state, in order to examine changes in functional connectivity within and between the default-mode network (DMN) and the task-positive network (TPN) across the three states. We found that alterations in connectivity observed during the N-back task persisted into the subsequent resting state within the TPN and between the DMN and TPN, but not within the DMN. Further, speed of working memory performance and TPN connectivity strength during the N-back task predicted connectivity strength in the subsequent resting state. Finally, DMN connectivity measured before and during the N-back task predicted individual differences in self-reported inattentiveness, but this association was not found during the post-task resting state. Together, these findings have important implications for models of how the brain recovers following effortful cognition, as well as for experimental designs using resting and task scans. PMID:23281202

  14. Short Term Auditory Pacing Changes Dual Motor Task Coordination in Children with and without Dyslexia

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Getchell, Nancy; Mackenzie, Samuel J.; Marmon, Adam R.

    2010-01-01

    This study examined the effect of short-term auditory pacing practice on dual motor task performance in children with and without dyslexia. Groups included dyslexic with Movement Assessment Battery for Children (MABC) scores greater than 15th percentile (D_HIGH, n = 18; mean age 9.89 [plus or minus] 2.0 years), dyslexic with MABC [less than or…

  15. Graph-Theoretical Study of Functional Changes Associated with the Iowa Gambling Task

    PubMed Central

    Bolt, Taylor; Laurienti, Paul J.; Lyday, Robert; Morgan, Ashley; Dagenbach, Dale

    2016-01-01

    The primary aim of this study was to examine changes in functional brain network organization from rest to the Iowa Gambling Task (IGT) using a graph-theoretical approach. Although many functional neuroimaging studies have examined task-based activations in complex-decision making tasks, changes in functional network organization during this task remain unexplored. This study used a repeated-measures approach to examine changes in functional network organization across multiple sessions of resting-state and IGT scans. The results revealed that global network organization shifted from a local, clustered organization at rest to a more global, integrated organization during the IGT. In addition, network organization was stable across sessions of rest and the IGT. Regional analyses of the Default Mode Network (DMN) and Fronto-Parietal Network (FPN) revealed differential patterns of change in regional network organization from rest to the IGT. The results of this study reveal that global and regional network organization is significantly modulated across states and fairly stable over time, and that network changes in the FPN are particularly important in the decision-making processes necessary for successful IGT performance. PMID:27445754

  16. Graph-Theoretical Study of Functional Changes Associated with the Iowa Gambling Task.

    PubMed

    Bolt, Taylor; Laurienti, Paul J; Lyday, Robert; Morgan, Ashley; Dagenbach, Dale

    2016-01-01

    The primary aim of this study was to examine changes in functional brain network organization from rest to the Iowa Gambling Task (IGT) using a graph-theoretical approach. Although many functional neuroimaging studies have examined task-based activations in complex-decision making tasks, changes in functional network organization during this task remain unexplored. This study used a repeated-measures approach to examine changes in functional network organization across multiple sessions of resting-state and IGT scans. The results revealed that global network organization shifted from a local, clustered organization at rest to a more global, integrated organization during the IGT. In addition, network organization was stable across sessions of rest and the IGT. Regional analyses of the Default Mode Network (DMN) and Fronto-Parietal Network (FPN) revealed differential patterns of change in regional network organization from rest to the IGT. The results of this study reveal that global and regional network organization is significantly modulated across states and fairly stable over time, and that network changes in the FPN are particularly important in the decision-making processes necessary for successful IGT performance. PMID:27445754

  17. Underground Test Area Subproject Phase I Data Analysis Task. Volume VIII - Risk Assessment Documentation Package

    SciTech Connect

    1996-12-01

    Volume VIII of the documentation for the Phase I Data Analysis Task performed in support of the current Regional Flow Model, Transport Model, and Risk Assessment for the Nevada Test Site Underground Test Area Subproject contains the risk assessment documentation. Because of the size and complexity of the model area, a considerable quantity of data was collected and analyzed in support of the modeling efforts. The data analysis task was consequently broken into eight subtasks, and descriptions of each subtask's activities are contained in one of the eight volumes that comprise the Phase I Data Analysis Documentation.

  18. Risk assessment of maintenance operations: the analysis of performing task and accident mechanism.

    PubMed

    Carrillo-Castrillo, Jesús A; Rubio-Romero, Juan Carlos; Guadix, Jose; Onieva, Luis

    2015-01-01

    Maintenance operations cover a great number of occupations. Most small and medium-sized enterprises lack the appropriate information to conduct risk assessments of maintenance operations. The objective of this research is to provide a method based on the concepts of task and accident mechanisms for an initial risk assessment by taking into consideration the prevalence and severity of the maintenance accidents reported. Data were gathered from 11,190 reported accidents in maintenance operations in the manufacturing sector of Andalusia from 2003 to 2012. By using a semi-quantitative methodology, likelihood and severity were evaluated based on the actual distribution of accident mechanisms in each of the tasks. Accident mechanisms and tasks were identified by using those variables included in the European Statistics of Accidents at Work methodology. As main results, the estimated risk of the most frequent accident mechanisms identified for each of the analysed tasks is low and the only accident mechanisms with medium risk are accidents when lifting or pushing with physical stress on the musculoskeletal system in tasks involving carrying, and impacts against objects after slipping or stumbling for tasks involving movements. The prioritisation of public preventive actions for the accident mechanisms with a higher estimated risk is highly recommended. PMID:25179119

  19. Reliability of accelerometry to assess impact loads of jumping and landing tasks.

    PubMed

    Simons, Chantal; Bradshaw, Elizabeth J

    2016-01-01

    Overuse injuries, resulting from repetitive subacute impact loading, are a problem in high-performance sports. Monitoring of impact loading may aid in the prevention of these injuries. The current study aimed to establish the intra-day and inter-day reliability of a tri-axial accelerometer to assess impact loading during jumping and landing tasks. Twelve participants wore an accelerometer on their upper and lower back. They performed a continuous hopping task as well as drop landings and rebound jumps from three drop heights (37.5, 57.5 and 77.5 cm), peak resultant acceleration (PRA) was calculated for all tasks. The tasks were performed twice, one week apart at the same time of day. The difference in the mean, intra-class correlation coefficient, coefficient of variation and Cohen's effect size were calculated as measures of reliability. PRA showed good intra-day reliability for the hopping task. Inter-day reliability of the PRA was moderate to good across all tasks. Reliability of PRA was slightly higher when accelerations were recorded on the lower back compared to the upper back. To assess impact loading, during continuous hopping, drop landings and rebound jumps, PRA recorded at both the upper and lower back appears to be a reliable measure. PMID:26836593

  20. Physiological and behavioural changes associated to the management of secondary tasks while driving.

    PubMed

    Collet, C; Clarion, A; Morel, M; Chapon, A; Petit, C

    2009-11-01

    Sharing attention between two tasks requiring the same mental resources is supposed to increase the resulting strain. Phoning while driving may elicit cognitive interference between driving operations and conversation and consequently, may affect driving efficiency. The road scene cues may thus be perceived late or even omitted, increasing the probability to be involved in a critical situation. The aim of the experiment was to study how the additional strain elicited by a secondary task may change drivers' arousal with potential consequences on driving performance. Electrodermal activity, heart rate and reaction time (RT) were the dependent variables. Listening to the radio, holding an in-vehicle or a cell-phone conversation were the secondary communication tasks, performed by 10 participants during a driving sequence on a private circuit. Within nominal driving, each communication task was requested at random to prevent any habituation or anticipation. The cell-phone conversation made RT increase by about 20%, by comparison to the nominal driving condition. Nevertheless, the in-vehicle conversation impacted RT almost in the same proportion. Physiological data showed that arousal level increased as a function of dual-tasks requirements, the in-vehicle conversation eliciting the same strain as the remote conversation. With caution due to contextual differences between these two communication tasks, conversing with a passenger was thus as detrimental as using a cell-phone. PMID:19249012

  1. Emotion has no impact on attention in a change detection flicker task

    PubMed Central

    Bendall, Robert C. A.; Thompson, Catherine

    2015-01-01

    Past research provides conflicting findings regarding the influence of emotion on visual attention. Early studies suggested a broadening of attentional resources in relation to positive mood. However, more recent evidence indicates that positive emotions may not have a beneficial impact on attention, and that the relationship between emotion and attention may be mitigated by factors such as task demand or stimulus valence. The current study explored the effect of emotion on attention using the change detection flicker paradigm. Participants were induced into positive, neutral, and negative mood states and then completed a change detection task. A series of neutral scenes were presented and participants had to identify the location of a disappearing item in each scene. The change was made to the center or the periphery of each scene and it was predicted that peripheral changes would be detected quicker in the positive mood condition and slower in the negative mood condition, compared to the neutral condition. In contrast to previous findings emotion had no influence on attention and whilst central changes were detected faster than peripheral changes, change blindness was not affected by mood. The findings suggest that the relationship between emotion and visual attention is influenced by the characteristics of a task, and any beneficial impact of positive emotion may be related to processing style rather than a “broadening” of attentional resources. PMID:26539141

  2. Analytic and subjective assessments of operator workload imposed by communications tasks in transport aircraft

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Eckel, J. S.; Crabtree, M. S.

    1984-01-01

    Analytical and subjective techniques that are sensitive to the information transmission and processing requirements of individual communications-related tasks are used to assess workload imposed on the aircrew by A-10 communications requirements for civilian transport category aircraft. Communications-related tasks are defined to consist of the verbal exchanges between crews and controllers. Three workload estimating techniques are proposed. The first, an information theoretic analysis, is used to calculate bit values for perceptual, manual, and verbal demands in each communication task. The second, a paired-comparisons technique, obtains subjective estimates of the information processing and memory requirements for specific messages. By combining the results of the first two techniques, a hybrid analytical scale is created. The third, a subjective rank ordering of sequences of communications tasks, provides an overall scaling of communications workload. Recommendations for future research include an examination of communications-induced workload among the air crew and the development of simulation scenarios.

  3. Performing Isometric Force Control in Combination with a Cognitive Task: A Multidimensional Assessment

    PubMed Central

    Temprado, Jean-Jacques; Vieluf, Solveig; Bricot, Nicolas; Berton, Eric; Sleimen-Malkoun, Rita

    2015-01-01

    Introduction We used a multidimensional approach to study isometric force control in single and dual-task conditions. Methods Multiple measures of performance, efficiency, variability, and structural interference were calculated at low and higher force levels under single (force maintenance) and dual-task (force maintenance and reaction time) conditions. Results Reaction time and signal-to-noise ratio were larger in the dual-task conditions. They were also greater for the higher force condition, while sample entropy was lower. Perturbation analyses revealed smaller relative amplitude of downward perturbations for the higher force level. Discussion Attentional effort and efficiency are positively related when force level increases, and inversely related to entropy. These relations were presumably mediated by attentional investment. Behavioral perturbations show that attentional resources and structural interference models are not mutually exclusive to account for dual-task situation. Overall, the present study highlights the interest of a multidimensional assessment of force control. PMID:26571036

  4. Assessing the Effects of Momentary Priming on Memory Retention During an Interference Task

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Schutte, Paul C.

    2007-01-01

    A memory aid, that used brief (33ms) presentations of previously learned information (target words), was assessed on its ability to reinforce memory for target words while the subject was performing an interference task. The interference task required subjects to learn new words and thus interfered with their memory of the target words. The brief presentation (momentary memory priming) was hypothesized to refresh the subjects memory of the target words. 143 subjects, in a within subject design, were given a 33ms presentation of the target memory words during the interference task in a treatment condition and a blank 33ms presentation in the control condition. The primary dependent measure, memory loss over the interference trial, was not significantly different between the two conditions. The memory prime did not appear to hinder the subjects performance on the interference task. This paper describes the experiment and the results along with suggestions for future research.

  5. The Task, Relationship, and Change Behaviors of Successful Title I Elementary Principals in California

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Bray, Beth Anne

    2012-01-01

    Purpose: The purpose of this study was to identify and describe how successful Title I elementary school principals in California prioritize by importance to school success, the 12 literature-based task, relationship, and change dimensions of principal behaviors and which strategies or methods did successful Title I elementary school principals…

  6. Attention as a Cueing Function during Kindergarten Children's Dimensional Change Task Performance

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Coldren, Jeffrey T.; Colombo, John

    2009-01-01

    The purpose of this experiment is to test whether shift flexibility in kindergarten children is a joint function of rule-usage and inhibition of attention. Sixty-six children were given either a distraction or facilitation condition in a computerized version of the dimensional change card sort task. In the distraction condition, the background of…

  7. Relations as Rules: The Role of Attention in the Dimensional Change Card Sort Task

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Honomichl, Ryan D.; Chen, Zhe

    2011-01-01

    Preschoolers are typically unable to switch sorting rules during the Dimensional Change Card Sort task. One explanation for this phenomenon is attentional inflexibility (Kirkham, Cruess, & Diamond, 2003). In 4 experiments with 3- to 4-year-olds, we tested this hypothesis by examining the influence of dimensional salience on switching performance.…

  8. The Effect of Labeling on Preschool Children's Performance in the Dimensional Change Card Sort Task

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Muller, Ulrich; Zelazo, Philip D.; Lurye, Leah E.; Liebermann, Dana P.

    2008-01-01

    Previous research suggests that experimenter-induced labeling of test cards improves preschoolers' performance on the Dimensional Change Card Sort Task (DCCS), a measure of flexible rule use. Three experiments attempted to further clarify how labeling aids performance on the DCCS. Experiment 1 examined the nature of the labeling effect but failed…

  9. Perspective Taking and Cognitive Flexibility in the Dimensional Change Card Sorting (DCCS) Task

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Kloo, Daniela; Perner, Josef; Aichhorn, Markus; Schmidhuber, Nicola

    2010-01-01

    In a study with 79 3-year-olds, we confirm earlier findings that separating the sorting dimensions improve children's performance on the Dimensional Change Card Sorting (DCCS) task. We also demonstrate that the central reason for this facilitation is that the two sorting dimensions are not integral features of a single object. Spatial separation…

  10. Enhancing the Executive Functions of 3-Year-Olds in the Dimensional Change Card Sort Task

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Perone, Sammy; Molitor, Stephen J.; Buss, Aaron T.; Spencer, John P.; Samuelson, Larissa K.

    2015-01-01

    Executive functions enable flexible thinking, something young children are notoriously bad at. For instance, in the dimensional change card sort (DCCS) task, 3-year-olds can sort cards by one dimension (shape), but continue to sort by this dimension when asked to switch (to color). This study tests a prediction of a dynamic neural field model that…

  11. Two Types of Perseveration in the Dimension Change Card Sort Task

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Hanania, Rima

    2010-01-01

    In the Dimension Change Card Sort (DCCS) task, 3-year-olds can sort cards well by one dimension but have difficulty in switching to sort the same cards by another dimension when asked; that is, they perseverate on the first relevant information. What is the information that children perseverate on? Using a new version of the DCCS, the experiments…

  12. Task-dependent changes in cortical excitability and effective connectivity: a combined TMS-EEG study.

    PubMed

    Johnson, Jeffrey S; Kundu, Bornali; Casali, Adenauer G; Postle, Bradley R

    2012-05-01

    The brain's electrical response to transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS) is known to be influenced by exogenous factors such as the frequency and intensity of stimulation and the orientation and positioning of the stimulating coil. Less understood, however, is the influence of endogenous neural factors, such as global brain state, on the TMS-evoked response (TMS-ER). In the present study, we explored how changes in behavioral state affect the TMS-ER by perturbing the superior parietal lobule (SPL) with single pulses of TMS and measuring consequent differences in the frequency, strength, and spatial spread of TMS-evoked currents during the delay period of a spatial short-term memory task and during a period of passive fixation. Results revealed that task performance increased the overall strength of electrical currents induced by TMS, increased the spatial spread of TMS-evoked activity to distal brain regions, and increased the ability of TMS to reset the phase of ongoing broadband cortical oscillations. By contrast, task performance had little effect on the dominant frequency of the TMS-ER, both locally and at distal brain areas. These findings contribute to a growing body of work using combined TMS and neuroimaging methods to explore task-dependent changes in the functional organization of cortical networks implicated in task performance. PMID:22323626

  13. The inter-rater reliability of Strain Index and OCRA Checklist task assessments in cheese processing.

    PubMed

    Paulsen, Robert; Gallu, Tommaso; Gilkey, David; Reiser, Raoul; Murgia, Lelia; Rosecrance, John

    2015-11-01

    The purpose of this study was to characterize the inter-rater reliability of two physical exposure assessment methods of the upper extremity, the Strain Index (SI) and Occupational Repetitive Actions (OCRA) Checklist. These methods are commonly used in occupational health studies and by occupational health practitioners. Seven raters used the SI and OCRA Checklist to assess task-level physical exposures to the upper extremity of workers performing 21 cheese manufacturing tasks. Inter-rater reliability was characterized using a single-measure, agreement-based intraclass correlation coefficient (ICC). Inter-rater reliability of SI assessments was moderate to good (ICC = 0.59, 95% CI: 0.45-0.73), a similar finding to prior studies. Inter-rater reliability of OCRA Checklist assessments was excellent (ICC = 0.80, 95% CI: 0.70-0.89). Task complexity had a small, but non-significant, effect on inter-rater reliability SI and OCRA Checklist scores. Both the SI and OCRA Checklist assessments possess adequate inter-rater reliability for the purposes of occupational health research and practice. The OCRA Checklist inter-rater reliability scores were among the highest reported in the literature for semi-quantitative physical exposure assessment tools of the upper extremity. The OCRA Checklist however, required more training time and time to conduct the risk assessments compared to the SI. PMID:26154218

  14. Revved up or Turned off? How Domain Knowledge Changes the Relationship between Perceived Task Complexity and Task Interest

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Durik, Amanda M.; Matarazzo, Kristina L.

    2009-01-01

    This correlational study examined the relationship between perceived task complexity and task interest for individuals with varying levels of domain knowledge and/or individual interest. Forty-five college student participants (46% women) reported their knowledge and individual interest in biology before learning about the biology of fungus.…

  15. Climate Change, Permafrost and Infrastructure: Task Force Report of the U.S. Arctic Research Commission

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Brigham, L. W.; Nelson, F. E.

    2003-12-01

    During 2002 the U.S. Arctic Research Commission chartered a task force on climate change, permafrost and infrastructure impacts. The task force was asked to identify key issues and research needs to foster a greater understanding of global change impacts on permafrost in the Arctic and their importance to natural and human systems. Permafrost was found to play three key roles in the context of climatic change: as a record keeper by functioning as a temperature archive; as a translator of climate change through subsidence and related impacts; and, as a facilitator of further change through its impacts on the global carbon cycle. Evidence of widespread warming of permafrost and observations of thawing have serious implications for Alaska's transportation network, for the trans-Alaska pipeline, and for nearly 100,000 Alaskans living in areas of permafrost. These impacts resulting from changing permafrost must be met by a timely, well-informed, and coordinated response by a host of federal and state organizations. Key task force findings include: requirements for a dedicated U.S. federal permafrost research program; data management needs; baseline permafrost mapping in Alaska; basic permafrost research focusing on process studies and modeling; and, applied permafrost research on design criteria and contaminants in permafrost environments. This report to the Commissioners makes specific recommendations to seven federal agencies, the State of Alaska, and the National Research Council. These recommendations will be incorporated in future Arctic research planning documents of the U.S. Arctic Research Commission.

  16. Detection of Subtle Cognitive Changes after mTBI Using a Novel Tablet-Based Task.

    PubMed

    Fischer, Tara D; Red, Stuart D; Chuang, Alice Z; Jones, Elizabeth B; McCarthy, James J; Patel, Saumil S; Sereno, Anne B

    2016-07-01

    This study examined the potential for novel tablet-based tasks, modeled after eye tracking techniques, to detect subtle sensorimotor and cognitive deficits after mild traumatic brain injury (mTBI). Specifically, we examined whether performance on these tablet-based tasks (Pro-point and Anti-point) was able to correctly categorize concussed versus non-concussed participants, compared with performance on other standardized tests for concussion. Patients admitted to the emergency department with mTBI were tested on the Pro-point and Anti-point tasks, a current standard cognitive screening test (i.e., the Standard Assessment of Concussion [SAC]), and another eye movement-based tablet test, the King-Devick(®) (KD). Within hours after injury, mTBI patients showed significant slowing in response times, compared with both orthopedic and age-matched control groups, in the Pro-point task, demonstrating deficits in sensorimotor function. Mild TBI patients also showed significant slowing, compared with both control groups, on the Anti-point task, even when controlling for sensorimotor slowing, indicating deficits in cognitive function. Performance on the SAC test revealed similar deficits of cognitive function in the mTBI group, compared with the age-matched control group; however, the KD test showed no evidence of cognitive slowing in mTBI patients, compared with either control group. Further, measuring the sensitivity and specificity of these tasks to accurately predict mTBI with receiver operating characteristic analysis indicated that the Anti-point and Pro-point tasks reached excellent levels of accuracy and fared better than current standardized tools for assessment of concussion. Our findings suggest that these rapid tablet-based tasks are able to reliably detect and measure functional impairment in cognitive and sensorimotor control within hours after mTBI. These tasks may provide a more sensitive diagnostic measure for functional deficits that could prove key to

  17. Complexity Measures, Task Type, and Analytic Evaluations of Speaking Proficiency in a School-Based Assessment Context

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Gan, Zhengdong

    2012-01-01

    This study, which is part of a large-scale study of using objective measures to validate assessment rating scales and assessment tasks in a high-profile school-based assessment initiative in Hong Kong, examined how grammatical complexity measures relate to task type and analytic evaluations of students' speaking proficiency in a classroom-based…

  18. Samples of Students' Responses from the Grade 9 Science Performance-Based Assessment Tasks, June 1993.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Alberta Dept. of Education, Edmonton. Student Evaluation Branch.

    The purpose of this document is to provide teachers, administrators, students, and parents with samples of students' performances that exemplify standards in relation to the 1993 Grade 9 Science Performance-Based Assessment Tasks for the province of Alberta, Canada. A sample of 698 randomly selected students from 31 schools did the…

  19. Teaching and Assessing Science Process Skills in Physics: The "Bubbles" Task.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Solano-Flores, Guillermo

    2000-01-01

    Describes a bubble activity related to the concepts of force and motion. Uses soap solutions for the task and evaluates students according to their performance in the problem solving process and garnering investigation results, which are conceptually based. Promotes and assesses science process skills. (Contains 20 references.) (YDS)

  20. Effect of Assessment Task and Letter Writing Ability on Preschool Children's Spelling Performance

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Puranik, Cynthia; Apel, Kenn

    2010-01-01

    The purpose of this study was to examine whether spelling performance in preschool children varied as a function of the method of assessment and letter writing ability. The authors manipulated the motoric element and memory demands of the task by having children spell single words using letter tiles, orally, and by writing. The authors also…

  1. How Many Words Do You Know? An Integrated Assessment Task for Introductory Statistics Students

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Warton, David I.

    2007-01-01

    A novel assignment exercise is described, in which students use a dictionary to estimate the size of their vocabulary. This task was developed for an introductory statistics service course, although it can be modified for use in survey sampling courses. The exercise can be used to simultaneously assess a range of core statistics skills: sample…

  2. Gender Differences in the Self-Assessment of Accuracy on Cognitive Tasks.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Pallier, Gerry

    2003-01-01

    Examined the effects of gender on the self-assessment of accuracy of visual perceptual judgments. College students completed a test of general knowledge and a visual perceptual task. When results were analyzed by sex, men were more confident than women. Next, people age 17-80 completed tests of cognitive ability. The tendency for men to express…

  3. Evaluating Written, Audio and Video Feedback in Higher Education Summative Assessment Tasks

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    McCarthy, Josh

    2015-01-01

    This paper evaluates various feedback models utilised for summative assessment tasks for tertiary digital media students at the University of South Australia in Australia. The aim of this research project was to establish the advantages and disadvantages of each technique, and to determine which model provided students with more insight into their…

  4. Assessment of Working Memory Capacity in Preschool Children Using the Missing Scan Task

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Roman, Adrienne S.; Pisoni, David B.; Kronenberger, William G.

    2014-01-01

    The purpose of this study was to investigate the feasibility and validity of a modified version of Buschke's missing scan methodology, the Missing Scan Task (MST), to assess working memory capacity (WMC) and cognitive control processes in preschool children 3-6?years in age. Forty typically developing monolingual English-speaking children…

  5. Lecturer and First Year Student (Mis)understandings of Assessment Task Verbs: "Mind the Gap"

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Williams, Kevin

    2005-01-01

    This paper examines the way in which a cohort of first year Chemistry students interpreted commonly used assessment task verbs and compared these responses with their lecturers' usage of these terms. The results of the research suggest that the gap between the understandings held by students new to university, and those held by lecturers, is of…

  6. The Effectiveness of Students Redrafting Continuous Assessment Tasks: The Pivotal Role of Tutors and Feedback

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Dube, Cecilia; Kane, Sandra; Lear, Miriam

    2012-01-01

    In order to improve academic language competence, students in two academic literacy modules at the University of Johannesburg were given opportunities to resubmit continuous assessment tasks utilising tutor feedback to improve performance. Despite the potential benefits to the students, not all of them were taking advantage of this opportunity.…

  7. Task Rotation: Strategies for Differentiating Activities and Assessments by Learning Style. A Strategic Teacher PLC Guide

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Silver, Harvey; Moirao, Daniel; Jackson, Joyce

    2011-01-01

    One of the hardest jobs in teaching is to differentiate learning activities and assessments to your students' learning styles. But you and your colleagues can learn how to do this together when each of you has this guide to the Task Rotation strategy from our ultimate guide to teaching strategies, "The Strategic Teacher". Use the guide in your…

  8. Automatic Assessment of Complex Task Performance in Games and Simulations. CRESST Report 775

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Iseli, Markus R.; Koenig, Alan D.; Lee, John J.; Wainess, Richard

    2010-01-01

    Assessment of complex task performance is crucial to evaluating personnel in critical job functions such as Navy damage control operations aboard ships. Games and simulations can be instrumental in this process, as they can present a broad range of complex scenarios without involving harm to people or property. However, "automatic" performance…

  9. Assessing Young Children's Number Magnitude Representation: A Comparison between Novel and Conventional Tasks

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Reid, Erin E.; Baroody, Arthur J.; Purpura, David J.

    2015-01-01

    Previously, researchers have relied on asking young children to plot a given number on a 0-to-10 number line to assess their mental representation of numbers 1 to 9. However, such a ("conventional") number-to-position (N-P) task may underestimate the accuracy of young children's magnitude estimates and misrepresent the nature of their…

  10. Optimal task-dependent changes of bimanual feedback control and adaptation.

    PubMed

    Diedrichsen, Jörn

    2007-10-01

    The control and adaptation of bimanual movements is often considered to be a function of a fixed set of mechanisms [1, 2]. Here, I show that both feedback control and adaptation change optimally with task goals. Participants reached with two hands to two separate spatial targets (two-cursor condition) or used the same bimanual movements to move a cursor presented at the spatial average location of the two hands to a single target (one-cursor condition). A force field was randomly applied to one of the hands. In the two-cursor condition, online corrections occurred only on the perturbed hand, whereas the other movement was controlled independently. In the one-cursor condition, online correction could be detected on both hands as early as 190 ms after the start. These changes can be shown to be optimal in respect to a simple task-dependent cost function [3]. Adaptation, the influence of a perturbation onto the next movement, also depended on task goals. In the two-cursor condition, only the perturbed hand adapted to a force perturbation [2], whereas in the one-cursor condition, both hands adapted. These findings demonstrate that the central nervous system changes bimanual feedback control and adaptation optimally according to the current task requirements. PMID:17900901

  11. Validation of a novel cognitive bias task based on difference in quantity of reinforcement for assessing environmental enrichment.

    PubMed

    Keen, Heidi A; Nelson, O Lynne; Robbins, Charles T; Evans, Marc; Shepherdson, David J; Newberry, Ruth C

    2014-05-01

    Cognitive bias tasks purport to assess affective states via responses to ambiguous stimuli. We hypothesized that a novel cognitive bias task based on positive reinforcement using quantity differences would detect changes in affect in captive grizzly bears (Ursus arctos horribilis). We trained bears (n = 8) to respond differently (nose or paw touch) to two stimuli (light or dark gray cue cards), with responses counterbalanced across bears. The two cues signaled a small or large food reward, respectively. Responses to ambiguous probe stimuli (i.e., shades of gray) intermediate to the trained stimuli were classified as either 'optimistic,' appropriate for the larger reward, or 'pessimistic,' appropriate for the smaller reward. In Experiment 1, we explored the contrast in reward size necessary to detect a change in response across probe stimuli (large reward, 3 or 6 apple slices: small reward, 1 slice). We observed a change in response across probe stimuli, with no difference in response between reward-value groups, indicating that a contrast of 3:1 apple slices was sufficient to affect responses. In Experiment 2, we investigated cognitive bias after 2.1 h of exposure to enrichment items varying in attractiveness. Results were unaffected by enrichment type or time spent interacting with enrichments, indicating that the task failed to demonstrate criterion validity for comparing mood following exposure to different enrichment items. However, greater time spent pacing prior to testing was associated with 'optimistic' judgments. The data provide some support for use of cognitive bias tasks based on quantity differences in animal welfare assessments involving captive wildlife. PMID:24045850

  12. Assessing Wellness in College Students: A Validation of the Salubrious Lifestyle Scale of the Student Developmental Task and Lifestyle Assessment.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Bates, Jeffrey M.; Cooper, Diane L.; Wachs, Peter M.

    2001-01-01

    Study is a validation of the two proposed subscales for the Salubrious Lifestyle (SL) Scale of the Student Developmental Task and Lifestyle Assessment (SDTLA). The two subscales, Drug/Alcohol and Exercise/Nutrition, were determined from factor analysis of the original SL scale of the SDTLA. Findings support validation of both subscales. (Contains…

  13. Age-related changes in learning across early childhood: a new imitation task.

    PubMed

    Dickerson, Kelly; Gerhardstein, Peter; Zack, Elizabeth; Barr, Rachel

    2013-11-01

    Imitation plays a critical role in social and cognitive development, but the social learning mechanisms contributing to the development of imitation are not well understood. We developed a new imitation task designed to examine social learning mechanisms across the early childhood period. The new task involves assembly of abstract-shaped puzzle pieces in an arbitrary sequence on a magnet board. Additionally, we introduce a new scoring system that extends traditional goal-directed imitation scoring to include measures of both children's success at copying gestures (sliding the puzzle pieces) and goals (connecting the puzzle pieces). In Experiment 1, we demonstrated an age-invariant baseline from 1.5 to 3.5 years of age, accompanied by age-related changes in success at copying goals and gestures from a live demonstrator. In Experiment 2, we applied our new task to learning following a video demonstration. Imitation performance in the video demonstration group lagged behind that of the live demonstration group, showing a protracted video deficit effect. Across both experiments, children were more likely to copy gestures at earlier ages, suggesting mimicry, and only later copy both goals and gestures, suggesting imitation. Taken together, the findings suggest that different social learning strategies may predominate in imitation learning dependent upon the degree of object affordance, task novelty, and task complexity. PMID:22786801

  14. Lost in the move? Secondary task performance impairs tactile change detection on the body.

    PubMed

    Gallace, Alberto; Zeeden, Sophia; Röder, Brigitte; Spence, Charles

    2010-03-01

    Change blindness, the surprising inability of people to detect significant changes between consecutively-presented visual displays, has recently been shown to affect tactile perception as well. Visual change blindness has been observed during saccades and eye blinks, conditions under which people's awareness of visual information is temporarily suppressed. In the present study, we demonstrate change blindness for suprathreshold tactile stimuli resulting from the execution of a secondary task requiring bodily movement. In Experiment 1, the ability of participants to detect changes between two sequentially-presented vibrotactile patterns delivered on their arms and legs was compared while they performed a secondary task consisting of either the execution of a movement with the right arm toward a visual target or the verbal identification of the target side. The results demonstrated that a motor response gave rise to the largest drop in perceptual sensitivity (as measured by changes in d') in detecting changes to the tactile display. In Experiment 2, we replicated these results under conditions in which the participants had to detect tactile changes while turning a steering wheel instead. These findings are discussed in terms of the role played by bodily movements, sensory suppression, and higher order information processing in modulating people's awareness of tactile information across the body surface. PMID:19647451

  15. Integration of classroom science performance assessment tasks by participants of the Wisconsin Performance Assessment Development Project (WPADP)

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Tonnis, Dorothy Ann

    The goals of this interpretive study were to examine selected Wisconsin science teachers' perceptions of teaching and learning science, to describe the scope of classroom performance assessment practices, and to gain an understanding of teachers' personal and professional experiences that influenced their belief systems of teaching, learning and assessment. The study was designed to answer the research questions: (1) How does the integration of performance assessment relate to the teachers' views of teaching and learning? (2) How are the selected teachers integrating performance assessment in their teaching? (3) What past personal and professional experiences have influenced teachers' attitudes and beliefs related to their classroom performance assessment practices? Purposeful sampling was used to select seven Wisconsin elementary, middle and high school science teachers who participated in the WPADP initiative from 1993-1995. Data collection methods included a Teaching Practices Inventory (TPI), semi-structured interviews, teacher developed portfolios, portfolio conferences, and classroom observations. Four themes and multiple categories emerged through data analysis to answer the research questions and to describe the results. Several conclusions were drawn from this research. First, science teachers who appeared to effectively integrate performance assessment, demonstrated transformational thinking in their attitudes and beliefs about teaching and learning science. In addition, these teachers viewed assessment and instructional practices as interdependent. Third, transformational teachers generally used well defined criteria to judge student work and made it public to the students. Transformational teachers provided students with real-world performance assessment tasks that were also learning events. Furthermore, student task responses informed the transformational teachers about effectiveness of instruction, students' complex thinking skills, quality of

  16. Comparative study of upper limb load assessment and occurrence of musculoskeletal disorders at repetitive task workstations.

    PubMed

    Roman-Liu, Danuta; Bugajska, Joanna; Tokarski, Tomasz

    2014-01-01

    This study explored the relationship between subjectively assessed complaints of pain in the arm, forearm and hand, and musculoskeletal load caused by repetitive tasks. Workers (n=942) were divided into 22 subgroups, according to the type of their workstations. They answered questions on perceived musculoskeletal pain of upper limbs. Basic and aggregate indices from a questionnaire on the prevalence, intensity and frequency of pain were compared with an upper limb load indicator (repetitive task index, RTI) calculated with the recently developed Upper Limb Risk Assessment (ULRA). There was relatively strong correlation of RTI and general intensity and frequency of pain in the arm, and general intensity and frequency of pain in the arm and forearm or prevalence of pain in the arm. Frequency and intensity of pain in the arm were weakly correlated. An aggregate indicator of evaluation of MSDs, which was calculated on the basis of the prevalence, intensity and frequency of pain, was to a higher degree associated with the musculoskeletal load of a task than basic evaluative parameters. Thus, such an aggregate indicator can be an alternative in comparing subjectively assessed MSDs with task-related musculoskeletal load and in establishing limit levels for that load. PMID:24975106

  17. A survey and task-based quality assessment of static 2D colormaps

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Bernard, Jürgen; Steiger, Martin; Mittelstädt, Sebastian; Thum, Simon; Keim, Daniel; Kohlhammer, Jörn

    2015-01-01

    Color is one of the most important visual variables since it can be combined with any other visual mapping to encode information without using additional space on the display. Encoding one or two dimensions with color is widely explored and discussed in the field. Also mapping multi-dimensional data to color is applied in a vast number of applications, either to indicate similar, or to discriminate between different elements or (multi-dimensional) structures on the screen. A variety of 2D colormaps exists in literature, covering a large variance with respect to different perceptual aspects. Many of the colormaps have a different perspective on the underlying data structure as a consequence of the various analysis tasks that exist for multivariate data. Thus, a large design space for 2D colormaps exists which makes the development and use of 2D colormaps cumbersome. According to our literature research, 2D colormaps have not been subject of in-depth quality assessment. Therefore, we present a survey of static 2D colormaps as applied for information visualization and related fields. In addition, we map seven devised quality assessment measures for 2D colormaps to seven relevant tasks for multivariate data analysis. Finally, we present the quality assessment results of the 2D colormaps with respect to the seven analysis tasks, and contribute guidelines about which colormaps to select or create for each analysis task.

  18. Comparative Study of Upper Limb Load Assessment and Occurrence of Musculoskeletal Disorders at Repetitive Task Workstations

    PubMed Central

    ROMAN-LIU, Danuta; BUGAJSKA, Joanna; TOKARSKI, Tomasz

    2014-01-01

    This study explored the relationship between subjectively assessed complaints of pain in the arm, forearm and hand, and musculoskeletal load caused by repetitive tasks. Workers (n=942) were divided into 22 subgroups, according to the type of their workstations. They answered questions on perceived musculoskeletal pain of upper limbs. Basic and aggregate indices from a questionnaire on the prevalence, intensity and frequency of pain were compared with an upper limb load indicator (repetitive task index, RTI) calculated with the recently developed Upper Limb Risk Assessment (ULRA). There was relatively strong correlation of RTI and general intensity and frequency of pain in the arm, and general intensity and frequency of pain in the arm and forearm or prevalence of pain in the arm. Frequency and intensity of pain in the arm were weakly correlated. An aggregate indicator of evaluation of MSDs, which was calculated on the basis of the prevalence, intensity and frequency of pain, was to a higher degree associated with the musculoskeletal load of a task than basic evaluative parameters. Thus, such an aggregate indicator can be an alternative in comparing subjectively assessed MSDs with task-related musculoskeletal load and in establishing limit levels for that load. PMID:24975106

  19. Automated Cognitive Health Assessment Using Smart Home Monitoring of Complex Tasks

    PubMed Central

    Dawadi, Prafulla N.; Cook, Diane J.; Schmitter-Edgecombe, Maureen

    2014-01-01

    One of the many services that intelligent systems can provide is the automated assessment of resident well-being. We hypothesize that the functional health of individuals, or ability of individuals to perform activities independently without assistance, can be estimated by tracking their activities using smart home technologies. In this paper, we introduce a machine learning-based method for assessing activity quality in smart homes. To validate our approach we quantify activity quality for 179 volunteer participants who performed a complex, interweaved set of activities in our smart home apartment. We observed a statistically significant correlation (r=0.79) between automated assessment of task quality and direct observation scores. Using machine learning techniques to predict the cognitive health of the participants based on task quality is accomplished with an AUC value of 0.64. We believe that this capability is an important step in understanding everyday functional health of individuals in their home environments. PMID:25530925

  20. Prefrontal Single-Neuron Responses after Changes in Task Contingencies during Trace Eyeblink Conditioning in Rabbits

    PubMed Central

    2016-01-01

    Abstract A number of studies indicate that the medial prefrontal cortex (mPFC) plays a role in mediating the expression of behavioral responses during tasks that require flexible changes in behavior. During trace eyeblink conditioning, evidence suggests that the mPFC provides the cerebellum with a persistent input to bridge the temporal gap between conditioned and unconditioned stimuli. Therefore, the mPFC is in a position to directly mediate the expression of trace conditioned responses. However, it is unknown whether persistent neural responses are associated with the flexible expression of behavior when task contingencies are changed during trace eyeblink conditioning. To investigate this, single-unit activity was recorded in the mPFC of rabbits during extinction and reacquisition of trace eyeblink conditioning, and during training to a different conditional stimulus. Persistent responses remained unchanged after full extinction, and also did not change during reacquisition training. During training to a different tone, however, the generalization of persistent responses to the new stimulus was associated with an animal’s performance—when persistent responses generalized to the new tone, performance was high (>50% response rate). When persistent responses decreased to baseline rates, performance was poor (<50% response rate). The data suggest that persistent mPFC responses do not appear to mediate flexible changes in the expression of the original learning, but do appear to play a role in the generalization of that learning when the task is modified. PMID:27517083

  1. Planning, Implementing, and Assessing an Authentic Performance Task in Middle Grades Classrooms

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Barnes, Nicole C.; Urbankowski, Daniel

    2014-01-01

    As young adolescents, middle grades students experience a wide variety of changes related to their cognitive capabilities, social and emotional well-being, and use of self-regulation strategies. Authentic performance tasks challenge students to apply their knowledge and skills to realistic problems to create products or performances--consistent…

  2. Age-related Multiscale Changes in Brain Signal Variability in Pre-task versus Post-task Resting-state EEG.

    PubMed

    Wang, Hongye; McIntosh, Anthony R; Kovacevic, Natasa; Karachalios, Maria; Protzner, Andrea B

    2016-07-01

    Recent empirical work suggests that, during healthy aging, the variability of network dynamics changes during task performance. Such variability appears to reflect the spontaneous formation and dissolution of different functional networks. We sought to extend these observations into resting-state dynamics. We recorded EEG in young, middle-aged, and older adults during a "rest-task-rest" design and investigated if aging modifies the interaction between resting-state activity and external stimulus-induced activity. Using multiscale entropy as our measure of variability, we found that, with increasing age, resting-state dynamics shifts from distributed to more local neural processing, especially at posterior sources. In the young group, resting-state dynamics also changed from pre- to post-task, where fine-scale entropy increased in task-positive regions and coarse-scale entropy increased in the posterior cingulate, a key region associated with the default mode network. Lastly, pre- and post-task resting-state dynamics were linked to performance on the intervening task for all age groups, but this relationship became weaker with increasing age. Our results suggest that age-related changes in resting-state dynamics occur across different spatial and temporal scales and have consequences for information processing capacity. PMID:26942319

  3. Utilization Assessment of Target Electrification Vehicles at Naval Air Station Whidbey Island: Task 3

    SciTech Connect

    Schey, Steve

    2015-05-01

    Several U.S. Department of Defense based studies have been conducted to identify potential U.S. Department of Defense transportation systems that are strong candidates for introduction or expansion of plug-in electric vehicles (PEVs). Task 2 involved identifying daily operational characteristics of select vehicles and initiating data logging of vehicle movements in order to characterize the vehicle’s mission. Individual observations of these selected vehicles provide the basis for recommendations related to PEV adoption and whether a battery electric vehicle or plug-in hybrid electric vehicle (collectively referred to as PEVs) can fulfill the mission requirements and provide observations related to placement of PEV charging infrastructure. This report provides the results of the data analysis and observations related to replacement of current vehicles with PEVs. This fulfills part of the Task 3 requirements. Task 3 also includes an assessment of the charging infrastructure required to support this replacement, which is the subject of a separate report.

  4. Assessment of Fleet Inventory for Naval Air Station Whidbey Island. Task 1

    SciTech Connect

    Schey, Stephen; Francfort, Jim

    2015-06-01

    Task 1includes a survey of the inventory of non-tactical fleet vehicles at Naval Air Station Whidbey Island (NASWI) to characterize the fleet. This information and characterization are used to select vehicles for monitoring that takes place during Task 2. This monitoring involves data logging of vehicle operation in order to identify the vehicle’s mission and travel requirements. Individual observations of these selected vehicles provide the basis for recommendations related to PEV adoption. It also identifies whether a battery electric vehicle or plug-in hybrid electric vehicle (collectively referred to as PEVs) can fulfill the mission requirements and provide observations related to placement of PEV charging infrastructure. This report provides the results of the assessments and observations of the current non-tactical fleet, fulfilling the Task 1 requirements.

  5. Rest improves performance, nature improves happiness: Assessment of break periods on the abbreviated vigilance task.

    PubMed

    Finkbeiner, Kristin M; Russell, Paul N; Helton, William S

    2016-05-01

    The abbreviated vigilance task can quickly generate vigilance decrements, which has been argued is due to depletion of cognitive resources needed to sustain performance. Researchers suggest inclusion of rest breaks within vigilance tasks improve overall performance (Helton & Russell, 2015; Ross, Russell, & Helton, 2014), while different types of breaks demonstrate different effects. Some literature suggests exposure to natural movements/stimuli helps restore attention (Herzog, Black, Fountaine, & Knotts, 1997; Kaplan, 1995). Participants were randomly assigned to one experimental condition: dog video breaks, robot video breaks, countdown breaks or continuous vigilance. We assessed task performance and subjective reports of stress/workload. The continuous group displayed worst performance, suggesting breaks help restore attention. The dog videos did not affect performance, however, decreased reports of distress. These results support the importance of rest breaks and acknowledge the benefit of natural stimuli for promoting wellbeing/stress relief, overall suggesting performance and wellbeing may be independent, which warrants future studies. PMID:27089530

  6. Age-related changes in attentional selection: quality of task set or degradation of task set across time?

    PubMed

    Jackson, Jonathan D; Balota, David A

    2013-09-01

    The present study explores the nature of attentional selection in younger and older adults. Following R. De Jong, E. Berendsen, and R. Cools (1999, Acta Psychologica, Vol. 101, pp. 379-394), we manipulated the response to stimulus interval (RSI) in two attentional selection paradigms to examine if there are age-related differences in the quality of task set and/or the maintenance of task set across time. In Experiment 1, we found that the interference effect in a spatial interference task was (a) overall larger in older adults compared with younger adults, and (b) smaller at the short RSI (200 ms) compared with the long RSI (2000 ms), and (c) not associated with an interaction between age and RSI. The second experiment explored the same variables in a Stroop color interference paradigm. Again, older adults produced a disproportionately larger interference effect than younger adults, the interference effect was smaller at the short RSI compared with the long RSI, and there was no evidence of an interaction between age and RSI. In both experiments, the larger interference effect could not be attributed to age-related general slowing and there was evidence from Vincentile analyses of increasing interference and age effects at the slower response latencies. These results indicate that attentional selection deficits in these two experiments were due to a breakdown in the quality of the task set as opposed to age-related differences in the maintenance of the task set across time. PMID:23834491

  7. Task-oriented quality assessment and adaptation in real-time mission critical video streaming applications

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Nightingale, James; Wang, Qi; Grecos, Christos

    2015-02-01

    In recent years video traffic has become the dominant application on the Internet with global year-on-year increases in video-oriented consumer services. Driven by improved bandwidth in both mobile and fixed networks, steadily reducing hardware costs and the development of new technologies, many existing and new classes of commercial and industrial video applications are now being upgraded or emerging. Some of the use cases for these applications include areas such as public and private security monitoring for loss prevention or intruder detection, industrial process monitoring and critical infrastructure monitoring. The use of video is becoming commonplace in defence, security, commercial, industrial, educational and health contexts. Towards optimal performances, the design or optimisation in each of these applications should be context aware and task oriented with the characteristics of the video stream (frame rate, spatial resolution, bandwidth etc.) chosen to match the use case requirements. For example, in the security domain, a task-oriented consideration may be that higher resolution video would be required to identify an intruder than to simply detect his presence. Whilst in the same case, contextual factors such as the requirement to transmit over a resource-limited wireless link, may impose constraints on the selection of optimum task-oriented parameters. This paper presents a novel, conceptually simple and easily implemented method of assessing video quality relative to its suitability for a particular task and dynamically adapting videos streams during transmission to ensure that the task can be successfully completed. Firstly we defined two principle classes of tasks: recognition tasks and event detection tasks. These task classes are further subdivided into a set of task-related profiles, each of which is associated with a set of taskoriented attributes (minimum spatial resolution, minimum frame rate etc.). For example, in the detection class

  8. Object representations in visual working memory change according to the task context.

    PubMed

    Balaban, Halely; Luria, Roy

    2016-08-01

    This study investigated whether an item's representation in visual working memory (VWM) can be updated according to changes in the global task context. We used a modified change detection paradigm, in which the items moved before the retention interval. In all of the experiments, we presented identical color-color conjunction items that were arranged to provide a common fate Gestalt grouping cue during their movement. Task context was manipulated by adding a condition highlighting either the integrated interpretation of the conjunction items or their individuated interpretation. We monitored the contralateral delay activity (CDA) as an online marker of VWM. Experiment 1 employed only a minimal global context; the conjunction items were integrated during their movement, but then were partially individuated, at a late stage of the retention interval. The same conjunction items were perfectly integrated in an integration context (Experiment 2). An individuation context successfully produced strong individuation, already during the movement, overriding Gestalt grouping cues (Experiment 3). In Experiment 4, a short priming of the individuation context managed to individuate the conjunction items immediately after the Gestalt cue was no longer available. Thus, the representations of identical items changed according to the task context, suggesting that VWM interprets incoming input according to global factors which can override perceptual cues. PMID:27160997

  9. Assessing dynamics, spatial scale, and uncertainty in task-related brain network analyses.

    PubMed

    Stephen, Emily P; Lepage, Kyle Q; Eden, Uri T; Brunner, Peter; Schalk, Gerwin; Brumberg, Jonathan S; Guenther, Frank H; Kramer, Mark A

    2014-01-01

    The brain is a complex network of interconnected elements, whose interactions evolve dynamically in time to cooperatively perform specific functions. A common technique to probe these interactions involves multi-sensor recordings of brain activity during a repeated task. Many techniques exist to characterize the resulting task-related activity, including establishing functional networks, which represent the statistical associations between brain areas. Although functional network inference is commonly employed to analyze neural time series data, techniques to assess the uncertainty-both in the functional network edges and the corresponding aggregate measures of network topology-are lacking. To address this, we describe a statistically principled approach for computing uncertainty in functional networks and aggregate network measures in task-related data. The approach is based on a resampling procedure that utilizes the trial structure common in experimental recordings. We show in simulations that this approach successfully identifies functional networks and associated measures of confidence emergent during a task in a variety of scenarios, including dynamically evolving networks. In addition, we describe a principled technique for establishing functional networks based on predetermined regions of interest using canonical correlation. Doing so provides additional robustness to the functional network inference. Finally, we illustrate the use of these methods on example invasive brain voltage recordings collected during an overt speech task. The general strategy described here-appropriate for static and dynamic network inference and different statistical measures of coupling-permits the evaluation of confidence in network measures in a variety of settings common to neuroscience. PMID:24678295

  10. TBDQ: A Pragmatic Task-Based Method to Data Quality Assessment and Improvement.

    PubMed

    Vaziri, Reza; Mohsenzadeh, Mehran; Habibi, Jafar

    2016-01-01

    Organizations are increasingly accepting data quality (DQ) as a major key to their success. In order to assess and improve DQ, methods have been devised. Many of these methods attempt to raise DQ by directly manipulating low quality data. Such methods operate reactively and are suitable for organizations with highly developed integrated systems. However, there is a lack of a proactive DQ method for businesses with weak IT infrastructure where data quality is largely affected by tasks that are performed by human agents. This study aims to develop and evaluate a new method for structured data, which is simple and practical so that it can easily be applied to real world situations. The new method detects the potentially risky tasks within a process, and adds new improving tasks to counter them. To achieve continuous improvement, an award system is also developed to help with the better selection of the proposed improving tasks. The task-based DQ method (TBDQ) is most appropriate for small and medium organizations, and simplicity in implementation is one of its most prominent features. TBDQ is case studied in an international trade company. The case study shows that TBDQ is effective in selecting optimal activities for DQ improvement in terms of cost and improvement. PMID:27192547

  11. Assessing dynamics, spatial scale, and uncertainty in task-related brain network analyses

    PubMed Central

    Stephen, Emily P.; Lepage, Kyle Q.; Eden, Uri T.; Brunner, Peter; Schalk, Gerwin; Brumberg, Jonathan S.; Guenther, Frank H.; Kramer, Mark A.

    2014-01-01

    The brain is a complex network of interconnected elements, whose interactions evolve dynamically in time to cooperatively perform specific functions. A common technique to probe these interactions involves multi-sensor recordings of brain activity during a repeated task. Many techniques exist to characterize the resulting task-related activity, including establishing functional networks, which represent the statistical associations between brain areas. Although functional network inference is commonly employed to analyze neural time series data, techniques to assess the uncertainty—both in the functional network edges and the corresponding aggregate measures of network topology—are lacking. To address this, we describe a statistically principled approach for computing uncertainty in functional networks and aggregate network measures in task-related data. The approach is based on a resampling procedure that utilizes the trial structure common in experimental recordings. We show in simulations that this approach successfully identifies functional networks and associated measures of confidence emergent during a task in a variety of scenarios, including dynamically evolving networks. In addition, we describe a principled technique for establishing functional networks based on predetermined regions of interest using canonical correlation. Doing so provides additional robustness to the functional network inference. Finally, we illustrate the use of these methods on example invasive brain voltage recordings collected during an overt speech task. The general strategy described here—appropriate for static and dynamic network inference and different statistical measures of coupling—permits the evaluation of confidence in network measures in a variety of settings common to neuroscience. PMID:24678295

  12. TBDQ: A Pragmatic Task-Based Method to Data Quality Assessment and Improvement

    PubMed Central

    Vaziri, Reza; Mohsenzadeh, Mehran; Habibi, Jafar

    2016-01-01

    Organizations are increasingly accepting data quality (DQ) as a major key to their success. In order to assess and improve DQ, methods have been devised. Many of these methods attempt to raise DQ by directly manipulating low quality data. Such methods operate reactively and are suitable for organizations with highly developed integrated systems. However, there is a lack of a proactive DQ method for businesses with weak IT infrastructure where data quality is largely affected by tasks that are performed by human agents. This study aims to develop and evaluate a new method for structured data, which is simple and practical so that it can easily be applied to real world situations. The new method detects the potentially risky tasks within a process, and adds new improving tasks to counter them. To achieve continuous improvement, an award system is also developed to help with the better selection of the proposed improving tasks. The task-based DQ method (TBDQ) is most appropriate for small and medium organizations, and simplicity in implementation is one of its most prominent features. TBDQ is case studied in an international trade company. The case study shows that TBDQ is effective in selecting optimal activities for DQ improvement in terms of cost and improvement. PMID:27192547

  13. 75 FR 34438 - Defense Science Board Task Force on Trends and Implications of Climate Change for National and...

    Federal Register 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014

    2010-06-17

    ... of the Secretary Defense Science Board Task Force on Trends and Implications of Climate Change for... committee meetings. SUMMARY: The Defense Science Board Task Force on Trends and Implications of Climate Change for National and International Security will meet in closed session on July 14-15 and on July...

  14. Changes in Interest and Affect during a Difficult Reading Task: Relationships with Perceived Difficulty and Reading Fluency

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Fulmer, Sara M.; Tulis, Maria

    2013-01-01

    This study investigated changes in middle school students' interest and affect during a moderately difficult reading task. The aim was to explore how changes in interest (topic and situational) and affect were related to students' reading fluency throughout the task and perceived difficulty. Interest and affect were recorded at four time points:…

  15. Waste isolation safety assessment program. Task 4. Third contractor information meeting

    SciTech Connect

    Not Available

    1980-06-01

    The Contractor Information Meeting (October 14 to 17, 1979) was part of the FY-1979 effort of Task 4 of the Waste Isolation Safety Assessment Program (WISAP): Sorption/Desorption Analysis. The objectives of this task are to: evaluate sorption/desorption measurement methods and develop a standardized measurement procedure; produce a generic data bank of nuclide-geologic interactions using a wide variety of geologic media and groundwaters; perform statistical analysis and synthesis of these data; perform validation studies to compare short-term laboratory studies to long-term in situ behavior; develop a fundamental understanding of sorption/desorption processes; produce x-ray and gamma-emitting isotopes suitable for the study of actinides at tracer concentrations; disseminate resulting information to the international technical community; and provide input data support for repository safety assessment. Conference participants included those subcontracted to WISAP Task 4, representatives and independent subcontractors to the Office of Nuclear Waste Isolation, representatives from other waste disposal programs, and experts in the area of waste/geologic media interaction. Since the meeting, WISAP has been divided into two programs: Assessment of Effectiveness of Geologic Isolation Systems (AEGIS) (modeling efforts) and Waste/Rock Interactions Technology (WRIT) (experimental work). The WRIT program encompasses the work conducted under Task 4. This report contains the information presented at the Task 4, Third Contractor Information Meeting. Technical Reports from the subcontractors, as well as Pacific Northwest Laboratory (PNL), are provided along with transcripts of the question-and-answer sessions. The agenda and abstracts of the presentations are also included. Appendix A is a list of the participants. Appendix B gives an overview of the WRIT program and details the WRIT work breakdown structure for 1980.

  16. Connecting Lines of Research on Task Model Variables, Automatic Item Generation, and Learning Progressions in Game-Based Assessment

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Graf, Edith Aurora

    2014-01-01

    In "How Task Features Impact Evidence from Assessments Embedded in Simulations and Games," Almond, Kim, Velasquez, and Shute have prepared a thought-provoking piece contrasting the roles of task model variables in a traditional assessment of mathematics word problems to their roles in "Newton's Playground," a game designed…

  17. No evidence for feature binding by pigeons in a change detection task.

    PubMed

    Lazareva, Olga F; Wasserman, Edward A

    2016-02-01

    We trained pigeons to respond to one key when two consecutive displays were the same as one another (no-change trial) and to respond to another key when the two displays were different from one another (change trial; change detection task). Change-trial displays were distinguished by a change in all three features (color, orientation, and location) of all four items presented in the display. Pigeons learned this change-no change discrimination to high levels of accuracy. In Experiments 1 and 2, we compared replace trials in which one or two features were replaced by novel features to switch trials in which the features were exchanged among the objects. Pigeons reported both replace and switch trials as "no-change" trials. In contrast, adult humans in Experiment 3 reported both types of trials as "change" trials and showed robust evidence for feature binding. In Experiment 4, we manipulated the total number of objects in the display and the number of objects that underwent change. Unlike people, pigeons showed strong control by the number of feature changes in the second display; pigeons' failure to exhibit feature binding may therefore be attributed to their failure to attend to items in the displays as integral objects. PMID:26394018

  18. Brain functional network changes following Prelimbic area inactivation in a spatial memory extinction task.

    PubMed

    Méndez-Couz, Marta; Conejo, Nélida M; Vallejo, Guillermo; Arias, Jorge L

    2015-01-01

    Several studies suggest a prefrontal cortex involvement during the acquisition and consolidation of spatial memory, suggesting an active modulating role at late stages of acquisition processes. Recently, we have reported that the prelimbic and infralimbic areas of the prefrontal cortex, among other structures, are also specifically involved in the late phases of spatial memory extinction. This study aimed to evaluate whether the inactivation of the prelimbic area of the prefrontal cortex impaired spatial memory extinction. For this purpose, male Wistar rats were implanted bilaterally with cannulae into the prelimbic region of the prefrontal cortex. Animals were trained during 5 consecutive days in a hidden platform task and tested for reference spatial memory immediately after the last training session. One day after completing the training task, bilateral infusion of the GABAA receptor agonist Muscimol was performed before the extinction protocol was carried out. Additionally, cytochrome c oxidase histochemistry was applied to map the metabolic brain activity related to the spatial memory extinction under prelimbic cortex inactivation. Results show that animals acquired the reference memory task in the water maze, and the extinction task was successfully completed without significant impairment. However, analysis of the functional brain networks involved by cytochrome oxidase activity interregional correlations showed changes in brain networks between the group treated with Muscimol as compared to the saline-treated group, supporting the involvement of the mammillary bodies at a the late stage in the memory extinction process. PMID:25813749

  19. Assessing reservoir operations risk under climate change

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Brekke, L.D.; Maurer, E.P.; Anderson, J.D.; Dettinger, M.D.; Townsley, E.S.; Harrison, A.; Pruitt, T.

    2009-01-01

    Risk-based planning offers a robust way to identify strategies that permit adaptive water resources management under climate change. This paper presents a flexible methodology for conducting climate change risk assessments involving reservoir operations. Decision makers can apply this methodology to their systems by selecting future periods and risk metrics relevant to their planning questions and by collectively evaluating system impacts relative to an ensemble of climate projection scenarios (weighted or not). This paper shows multiple applications of this methodology in a case study involving California's Central Valley Project and State Water Project systems. Multiple applications were conducted to show how choices made in conducting the risk assessment, choices known as analytical design decisions, can affect assessed risk. Specifically, risk was reanalyzed for every choice combination of two design decisions: (1) whether to assume climate change will influence flood-control constraints on water supply operations (and how), and (2) whether to weight climate change scenarios (and how). Results show that assessed risk would motivate different planning pathways depending on decision-maker attitudes toward risk (e.g., risk neutral versus risk averse). Results also show that assessed risk at a given risk attitude is sensitive to the analytical design choices listed above, with the choice of whether to adjust flood-control rules under climate change having considerably more influence than the choice on whether to weight climate scenarios. Copyright 2009 by the American Geophysical Union.

  20. Vigilance Task-Related Change in Brain Functional Connectivity as Revealed by Wavelet Phase Coherence Analysis of Near-Infrared Spectroscopy Signals

    PubMed Central

    Wang, Wei; Wang, Bitian; Bu, Lingguo; Xu, Liwei; Li, Zengyong; Fan, Yubo

    2016-01-01

    This study aims to assess the vigilance task-related change in connectivity in healthy adults using wavelet phase coherence (WPCO) analysis of near-infrared spectroscopy signals (NIRS). NIRS is a non-invasive neuroimaging technique for assessing brain activity. Continuous recordings of the NIRS signals were obtained from the prefrontal cortex (PFC) and sensorimotor cortical areas of 20 young healthy adults (24.9 ± 3.3 years) during a 10-min resting state and a 20-min vigilance task state. The vigilance task was used to simulate driving mental load by judging three random numbers (i.e., whether odd numbers). The task was divided into two sessions: the first 10 min (Task t1) and the second 10 min (Task t2). The WPCO of six channel pairs were calculated in five frequency intervals: 0.6–2 Hz (I), 0.145–0.6 Hz (II), 0.052–0.145 Hz (III), 0.021–0.052 Hz (IV), and 0.0095–0.021 Hz (V). The significant WPCO formed global connectivity (GC) maps in intervals I and II and functional connectivity (FC) maps in intervals III to V. Results show that the GC levels in interval I and FC levels in interval III were significantly lower in the Task t2 than in the resting state (p < 0.05), particularly between the left PFC and bilateral sensorimotor regions. Also, the reaction time (RT) shows an increase in Task t2 compared with that in Task t1. However, no significant difference in WPCO was found between Task t1 and resting state. The results showed that the change in FC at the range of 0.6–2 Hz was not attributed to the vigilance task per se, but the interaction effect of vigilance task and time factors. The findings suggest that the decreased attention level might be partly attributed to the reduced GC levels between the left prefrontal region and sensorimotor area. The present results provide a new insight into the vigilance task-related brain activity. PMID:27547182

  1. Vigilance Task-Related Change in Brain Functional Connectivity as Revealed by Wavelet Phase Coherence Analysis of Near-Infrared Spectroscopy Signals.

    PubMed

    Wang, Wei; Wang, Bitian; Bu, Lingguo; Xu, Liwei; Li, Zengyong; Fan, Yubo

    2016-01-01

    This study aims to assess the vigilance task-related change in connectivity in healthy adults using wavelet phase coherence (WPCO) analysis of near-infrared spectroscopy signals (NIRS). NIRS is a non-invasive neuroimaging technique for assessing brain activity. Continuous recordings of the NIRS signals were obtained from the prefrontal cortex (PFC) and sensorimotor cortical areas of 20 young healthy adults (24.9 ± 3.3 years) during a 10-min resting state and a 20-min vigilance task state. The vigilance task was used to simulate driving mental load by judging three random numbers (i.e., whether odd numbers). The task was divided into two sessions: the first 10 min (Task t1) and the second 10 min (Task t2). The WPCO of six channel pairs were calculated in five frequency intervals: 0.6-2 Hz (I), 0.145-0.6 Hz (II), 0.052-0.145 Hz (III), 0.021-0.052 Hz (IV), and 0.0095-0.021 Hz (V). The significant WPCO formed global connectivity (GC) maps in intervals I and II and functional connectivity (FC) maps in intervals III to V. Results show that the GC levels in interval I and FC levels in interval III were significantly lower in the Task t2 than in the resting state (p < 0.05), particularly between the left PFC and bilateral sensorimotor regions. Also, the reaction time (RT) shows an increase in Task t2 compared with that in Task t1. However, no significant difference in WPCO was found between Task t1 and resting state. The results showed that the change in FC at the range of 0.6-2 Hz was not attributed to the vigilance task per se, but the interaction effect of vigilance task and time factors. The findings suggest that the decreased attention level might be partly attributed to the reduced GC levels between the left prefrontal region and sensorimotor area. The present results provide a new insight into the vigilance task-related brain activity. PMID:27547182

  2. Contribution of the Cerebellum in Cue-Dependent Force Changes During an Isometric Precision Grip Task.

    PubMed

    Kutz, Dieter F; Schmid, Barbara C; Meindl, Tobias; Timmann, Dagmar; Kolb, Florian P

    2016-08-01

    The "raspberry task" represents a precision grip task that requires continuous adjustment of grip forces and pull forces. During this task, subjects use a specialised grip rod and have to increase the pull force linearly while the rod is locked. The positions of the fingers are unrestrained and freely selectable. From the finger positions and the geometry of the grip rod, a physical lever was derived which is a comprehensive measurement of the subject's grip behaviour. In this study, the involvement of the cerebellum in establishing cued force changes (CFC) was examined. The auditory stimulus was associated with a motor behaviour that has to be readjusted during an ongoing movement that already started. Moreover, cerebellar involvement on grip behaviour was examined. The results show that patients presenting with degenerating cerebellar disease (CBL) were able to elicit CFC and were additionally able to optimise grip behaviour by minimising the lever. Comparison of the results of CBL with a control group of healthy subjects showed, however, that the CFC incidence was significantly lower and the reduction of the lever was less in CBL. Hence, the cerebellum is involved not only in the classical conditioning of reflexes but also in the association of sensory stimuli with complex changes in motor behaviour. Furthermore, the cerebellum is involved in the optimisation of grip behaviour during ongoing movements. Recent studies lead to the assumption that the cerebello-reticulo-spinal pathway might be important for the reduced optimisation of grip behaviour in CBL. PMID:26208705

  3. Visual Scanning Patterns during the Dimensional Change Card Sorting Task in Children with Autism Spectrum Disorder

    PubMed Central

    Yi, Li; Liu, Yubing; Li, Yunyi; Fan, Yuebo; Huang, Dan; Gao, Dingguo

    2012-01-01

    Impaired cognitive flexibility in children with autism spectrum disorder (ASD) has been reported in previous literature. The present study explored ASD children's visual scanning patterns during the Dimensional Change Card Sorting (DCCS) task using eye-tracking technique. ASD and typical developing (TD) children completed the standardized DCCS procedure on the computer while their eye movements were tracked. Behavioral results confirmed previous findings on ASD children's deficits in executive function. ASD children's visual scanning patterns also showed some specific underlying processes in the DCCS task compared to TD children. For example, ASD children looked shorter at the correct card in the postswitch phase and spent longer time at blank areas than TD children did. ASD children did not show a bias to the color dimension as TD children did. The correlations between the behavioral performance and eye moments were also discussed. PMID:23050145

  4. Enhancing the executive functions of 3-year-olds in the dimensional change card sort task

    PubMed Central

    Perone, Sammy; Molitor, Stephen; Buss, Aaron T.; Spencer, John P.; Samuelson, Larissa K.

    2015-01-01

    Executive functions (EFs) enable flexible thinking, something young children are notoriously bad at. For instance, in the dimensional change card sort (DCCS) task, 3-year-olds can sort cards by one dimension (shape), but continue to sort by this dimension when asked to switch (to color). This study tests a prediction of a Dynamic Neural Field (DNF) model that prior experience with the post-switch dimension can enhance 3-year-old’s performance in the DCCS task. In Experiment 1A, a matching game was used to pre-expose 3-year-olds (n=36) to color. This facilitated switching from sorting by shape to color. In Experiment 1B, 3-year-olds (n=18) were pre-exposed to shape. This did not facilitate switching from sorting by color to shape. The DNF model was used to provide a mechanistic explanation for this asymmetry. PMID:25441395

  5. Examining Gender Differences in Written Assessment Tasks in Biology: A Case Study of Evolutionary Explanations

    PubMed Central

    Federer, Meghan Rector; Nehm, Ross H.; Pearl, Dennis K.

    2016-01-01

    Understanding sources of performance bias in science assessment provides important insights into whether science curricula and/or assessments are valid representations of student abilities. Research investigating assessment bias due to factors such as instrument structure, participant characteristics, and item types are well documented across a variety of disciplines. However, the relationships among these factors are unclear for tasks evaluating understanding through performance on scientific practices, such as explanation. Using item-response theory (Rasch analysis), we evaluated differences in performance by gender on a constructed-response (CR) assessment about natural selection (ACORNS). Three isomorphic item strands of the instrument were administered to a sample of undergraduate biology majors and nonmajors (Group 1: n = 662 [female = 51.6%]; G2: n = 184 [female = 55.9%]; G3: n = 642 [female = 55.1%]). Overall, our results identify relationships between item features and performance by gender; however, the effect is small in the majority of cases, suggesting that males and females tend to incorporate similar concepts into their CR explanations. These results highlight the importance of examining gender effects on performance in written assessment tasks in biology. PMID:26865642

  6. Examining Gender Differences in Written Assessment Tasks in Biology: A Case Study of Evolutionary Explanations.

    PubMed

    Federer, Meghan Rector; Nehm, Ross H; Pearl, Dennis K

    2016-01-01

    Understanding sources of performance bias in science assessment provides important insights into whether science curricula and/or assessments are valid representations of student abilities. Research investigating assessment bias due to factors such as instrument structure, participant characteristics, and item types are well documented across a variety of disciplines. However, the relationships among these factors are unclear for tasks evaluating understanding through performance on scientific practices, such as explanation. Using item-response theory (Rasch analysis), we evaluated differences in performance by gender on a constructed-response (CR) assessment about natural selection (ACORNS). Three isomorphic item strands of the instrument were administered to a sample of undergraduate biology majors and nonmajors (Group 1: n = 662 [female = 51.6%]; G2: n = 184 [female = 55.9%]; G3: n = 642 [female = 55.1%]). Overall, our results identify relationships between item features and performance by gender; however, the effect is small in the majority of cases, suggesting that males and females tend to incorporate similar concepts into their CR explanations. These results highlight the importance of examining gender effects on performance in written assessment tasks in biology. PMID:26865642

  7. Using fiction to assess mental state understanding: a new task for assessing theory of mind in adults.

    PubMed

    Dodell-Feder, David; Lincoln, Sarah Hope; Coulson, Joseph P; Hooker, Christine I

    2013-01-01

    Social functioning depends on the ability to attribute and reason about the mental states of others--an ability known as theory of mind (ToM). Research in this field is limited by the use of tasks in which ceiling effects are ubiquitous, rendering them insensitive to individual differences in ToM ability and instances of subtle ToM impairment. Here, we present data from a new ToM task--the Short Story Task (SST)--intended to improve upon many aspects of existing ToM measures. More specifically, the SST was designed to: (a) assess the full range of individual differences in ToM ability without suffering from ceiling effects; (b) incorporate a range of mental states of differing complexity, including epistemic states, affective states, and intentions to be inferred from a first- and second-order level; (c) use ToM stimuli representative of real-world social interactions; (d) require participants to utilize social context when making mental state inferences; (e) exhibit adequate psychometric properties; and (f) be quick and easy to administer and score. In the task, participants read a short story and were asked questions that assessed explicit mental state reasoning, spontaneous mental state inference, and comprehension of the non-mental aspects of the story. Responses were scored according to a rubric that assigned greater points for accurate mental state attributions that included multiple characters' mental states. Results demonstrate that the SST is sensitive to variation in ToM ability, can be accurately scored by multiple raters, and exhibits concurrent validity with other social cognitive tasks. The results support the effectiveness of this new measure of ToM in the study of social cognition. The findings are also consistent with studies demonstrating significant relationships among narrative transportation, ToM, and the reading of fiction. Together, the data indicate that reading fiction may be an avenue for improving ToM ability. PMID:24244736

  8. Using Fiction to Assess Mental State Understanding: A New Task for Assessing Theory of Mind in Adults

    PubMed Central

    Dodell-Feder, David; Lincoln, Sarah Hope; Coulson, Joseph P.; Hooker, Christine I.

    2013-01-01

    Social functioning depends on the ability to attribute and reason about the mental states of others – an ability known as theory of mind (ToM). Research in this field is limited by the use of tasks in which ceiling effects are ubiquitous, rendering them insensitive to individual differences in ToM ability and instances of subtle ToM impairment. Here, we present data from a new ToM task – the Short Story Task (SST) - intended to improve upon many aspects of existing ToM measures. More specifically, the SST was designed to: (a) assess the full range of individual differences in ToM ability without suffering from ceiling effects; (b) incorporate a range of mental states of differing complexity, including epistemic states, affective states, and intentions to be inferred from a first- and second-order level; (c) use ToM stimuli representative of real-world social interactions; (d) require participants to utilize social context when making mental state inferences; (e) exhibit adequate psychometric properties; and (f) be quick and easy to administer and score. In the task, participants read a short story and were asked questions that assessed explicit mental state reasoning, spontaneous mental state inference, and comprehension of the non-mental aspects of the story. Responses were scored according to a rubric that assigned greater points for accurate mental state attributions that included multiple characters’ mental states. Results demonstrate that the SST is sensitive to variation in ToM ability, can be accurately scored by multiple raters, and exhibits concurrent validity with other social cognitive tasks. The results support the effectiveness of this new measure of ToM in the study of social cognition. The findings are also consistent with studies demonstrating significant relationships among narrative transportation, ToM, and the reading of fiction. Together, the data indicate that reading fiction may be an avenue for improving ToM ability. PMID:24244736

  9. Effects of noise and mental task performance upon changes in cerebral blood flow parameters.

    PubMed

    Nowakowska-Kotas, Marta; Pokryszko-Dragan, Anna; Brodowski, Mirosław; Szydło, Mariusz; Podemski, Ryszard

    2015-01-01

    The objectives of this paper were to determine whether traffic noise influences the parameters of cerebral blood flow (CBF) measured by functional transcranial Doppler sonography (fTCD) during the performance of mental tasks, and to see whether impact of noise on CBF changes with age. The study comprised 36 healthy volunteers, 22 women and 14 men, aged 25-49 years. The fTCD was performed using a fixed 2-MHz probe, aiming for an evaluation of mean velocity (MFV) and the pulsatility index (PI) in the middle cerebral artery (MCA) on both sides. Subsequently, fTCD was monitored: At rest; during performance of the Paced Auditory Serial Addition Test (PASAT); during exposure to traffic noise; and during concomitant exposure to noise and PASAT performance. MFV and PI were compared for particular conditions and correlated with age. During exposure to noise, flow parameters did not change significantly. PASAT performance in silence increased MFV and decreased PI in MCA on both sides. During PASAT performance, on exposure to noise, MCV and PI changed significantly only in the left MCA. However, values of MFV were significantly lower during noise than in silence. Correlations with age were noted for velocities in the right MCA during PASAT performance in silence and for PI on both sides during PASAT performed in noise conditions. Noise impairs the CBF during mental tasks. A comparison of changes in CBF parameters correlated with age suggests that the involvement of the nondominant hemisphere in managing with noise effects increases with age. PMID:26572702

  10. Effects of noise and mental task performance upon changes in cerebral blood flow parameters

    PubMed Central

    Nowakowska-Kotas, Marta; Pokryszko-Dragan, Anna; Brodowski, Mirosław; Szydło, Mariusz; Podemski, Ryszard

    2015-01-01

    The objectives of this paper were to determine whether traffic noise influences the parameters of cerebral blood flow (CBF) measured by functional transcranial Doppler sonography (fTCD) during the performance of mental tasks, and to see whether impact of noise on CBF changes with age. The study comprised 36 healthy volunteers, 22 women and 14 men, aged 25-49 years. The fTCD was performed using a fixed 2-MHz probe, aiming for an evaluation of mean velocity (MFV) and the pulsatility index (PI) in the middle cerebral artery (MCA) on both sides. Subsequently, fTCD was monitored: At rest; during performance of the Paced Auditory Serial Addition Test (PASAT); during exposure to traffic noise; and during concomitant exposure to noise and PASAT performance. MFV and PI were compared for particular conditions and correlated with age. During exposure to noise, flow parameters did not change significantly. PASAT performance in silence increased MFV and decreased PI in MCA on both sides. During PASAT performance, on exposure to noise, MCV and PI changed significantly only in the left MCA. However, values of MFV were significantly lower during noise than in silence. Correlations with age were noted for velocities in the right MCA during PASAT performance in silence and for PI on both sides during PASAT performed in noise conditions. Noise impairs the CBF during mental tasks. A comparison of changes in CBF parameters correlated with age suggests that the involvement of the nondominant hemisphere in managing with noise effects increases with age. PMID:26572702

  11. Climate change and coastal vulnerability assessment: Scenarios for integrated assessment

    USGS Publications Warehouse

    Nicholls, R.J.; Wong, P.P.; Burkett, V.; Woodroffe, C.D.; Hay, J.

    2008-01-01

    Coastal vulnerability assessments still focus mainly on sea-level rise, with less attention paid to other dimensions of climate change. The influence of non-climatic environmental change or socio-economic change is even less considered, and is often completely ignored. Given that the profound coastal changes of the twentieth century are likely to continue through the twenty-first century, this is a major omission, which may overstate the importance of climate change, and may also miss significant interactions of climate change with other non-climate drivers. To better support climate and coastal management policy development, more integrated assessments of climatic change in coastal areas are required, including the significant non-climatic changes. This paper explores the development of relevant climate and non-climate drivers, with an emphasis on the non-climate drivers. While these issues are applicable within any scenario framework, our ideas are illustrated using the widely used SRES scenarios, with both impacts and adaptation being considered. Importantly, scenario development is a process, and the assumptions that are made about future conditions concerning the coast need to be explicit, transparent and open to scientific debate concerning their realism and likelihood. These issues are generic across other sectors. ?? Integrated Research System for Sustainability Science and Springer 2008.

  12. Temporal Distinctiveness in Task Switching: Assessing the Mixture-Distribution Assumption

    PubMed Central

    Grange, James A.

    2016-01-01

    In task switching, increasing the response–cue interval has been shown to reduce the switch cost. This has been attributed to a time-based decay process influencing the activation of memory representations of tasks (task-sets). Recently, an alternative account based on interference rather than decay has been successfully applied to this data (Horoufchin et al., 2011a). In this account, variation of the RCI is thought to influence the temporal distinctiveness (TD) of episodic traces in memory, thus affecting their retrieval probability. This can affect performance as retrieval probability influences response time: If retrieval succeeds, responding is fast due to positive priming; if retrieval fails, responding is slow, due to having to perform the task via a slow algorithmic process. This account—and a recent formal model (Grange and Cross, 2015)—makes the strong prediction that all RTs are a mixture of one of two processes: a fast process when retrieval succeeds, and a slow process when retrieval fails. The present paper assesses the evidence for this mixture-distribution assumption in TD data. In a first section, statistical evidence for mixture-distributions is found using the fixed-point property test. In a second section, a mathematical process model with mixture-distributions at its core is fitted to the response time distribution data. Both approaches provide good evidence in support of the mixture-distribution assumption, and thus support temporal distinctiveness accounts of the data. PMID:26941697

  13. Temporal Distinctiveness in Task Switching: Assessing the Mixture-Distribution Assumption.

    PubMed

    Grange, James A

    2016-01-01

    In task switching, increasing the response-cue interval has been shown to reduce the switch cost. This has been attributed to a time-based decay process influencing the activation of memory representations of tasks (task-sets). Recently, an alternative account based on interference rather than decay has been successfully applied to this data (Horoufchin et al., 2011a). In this account, variation of the RCI is thought to influence the temporal distinctiveness (TD) of episodic traces in memory, thus affecting their retrieval probability. This can affect performance as retrieval probability influences response time: If retrieval succeeds, responding is fast due to positive priming; if retrieval fails, responding is slow, due to having to perform the task via a slow algorithmic process. This account-and a recent formal model (Grange and Cross, 2015)-makes the strong prediction that all RTs are a mixture of one of two processes: a fast process when retrieval succeeds, and a slow process when retrieval fails. The present paper assesses the evidence for this mixture-distribution assumption in TD data. In a first section, statistical evidence for mixture-distributions is found using the fixed-point property test. In a second section, a mathematical process model with mixture-distributions at its core is fitted to the response time distribution data. Both approaches provide good evidence in support of the mixture-distribution assumption, and thus support temporal distinctiveness accounts of the data. PMID:26941697

  14. Toxicity assessment for RMA target contaminants. Volume 1. Endangerment assessment RMA, task 35. Final draft report

    SciTech Connect

    1987-06-01

    This report is detailed discussion of the evaluations performed to develop the toxicity assessment for RMA contaminants in soil. The objectives of the toxicity assessment are to determine the nature and extent of health and environmental hazards associated with exposure to contaminants present at the site and identify a quantitative index of toxicity for each target contaminant, referred to in this assessment as DT. The toxicity assessment for the RMA target contaminants has been performed consistent with published EPA guidelines and addresses only human health hazards associated with contaminants in soil. Each toxicity profile is composed of seven sections: 1. summary; 2. chemical and physical properties; and 3. transport and rate.

  15. Changes in task-extrinsic context do not affect the persistence of long-term cumulative structural priming.

    PubMed

    Kutta, Timothy J; Kaschak, Michael P

    2012-11-01

    We present two experiments exploring the role of extrinsic memory factors (i.e., factors that are extrinsic to the primary task that is being performed) and intrinsic memory factors (i.e., factors that are intrinsic to the primary task being completed) in the persistence of cumulative structural priming effects. Participants completed a two-phase experiment, where the first phase established a bias toward producing either the double object or prepositional object construction, and the second phase assessed the effects of this bias. Extrinsic memory factors were manipulated by having participants complete the two phases of the study in the same or different locations (physical context change) or while watching the same or different videos (video context change). Participants completed the second phase of the study 10 min after the first phase of the study in Experiment 1, and after a delay of 1 week in Experiment 2. Results suggest that the observed structural priming effects were not affected by manipulations of extrinsic memory factors. These data suggest that explicit memory does not play a large role in the long-term persistence of cumulative structural priming effects. PMID:23103416

  16. A longitudinal study on dual-tasking effects on gait: cognitive change predicts gait variance in the elderly.

    PubMed

    MacAulay, Rebecca K; Brouillette, Robert M; Foil, Heather C; Bruce-Keller, Annadora J; Keller, Jeffrey N

    2014-01-01

    Neuropsychological abilities have found to explain a large proportion of variance in objective measures of walking gait that predict both dementia and falling within the elderly. However, to this date there has been little research on the interplay between changes in these neuropsychological processes and walking gait overtime. To our knowledge, the present study is the first to investigate intra-individual changes in neurocognitive test performance and gait step time at two-time points across a one-year span. Neuropsychological test scores from 440 elderly individuals deemed cognitively normal at Year One were analyzed via repeated measures t-tests to assess for decline in cognitive performance at Year Two. 34 of these 440 individuals neuropsychological test performance significantly declined at Year Two; whereas the "non-decliners" displayed improved memory, working memory, attention/processing speed test performance. Neuropsychological test scores were also submitted to factor analysis at both time points for data reduction purposes and to assess the factor stability overtime. Results at Year One yielded a three-factor solution: Language/Memory, Executive Attention/Processing Speed, and Working Memory. Year Two's test scores also generated a three-factor solution (Working Memory, Language/Executive Attention/Processing Speed, and Memory). Notably, language measures loaded on Executive Attention/Processing Speed rather than on the Memory factor at Year Two. Hierarchal multiple regression revealed that both Executive Attention/Processing Speed and sex significantly predicted variance in dual task step time at both time points. Remarkably, in the "decliners", the magnitude of the contribution of the neuropsychological characteristics to gait variance significantly increased at Year Two. In summary, this study provides longitudinal evidence of the dynamic relationship between intra-individual cognitive change and its influence on dual task gait step time. These

  17. Assessing Knowledge Change in Computer Science

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Nash, Jane Gradwohl; Bravaco, Ralph J.; Simonson, Shai

    2006-01-01

    The purpose of this study was to assess structural knowledge change across a two-week workshop designed to provide high-school teachers with training in Java and Object Oriented Programming. Both before and after the workshop, teachers assigned relatedness ratings to pairs of key concepts regarding Java and Object Oriented Programming. Their…

  18. Attentional Effects on Phenomenological Appearance: How They Change with Task Instructions and Measurement Methods

    PubMed Central

    Anderson, Britt

    2016-01-01

    It has been reported that exogenous cues accentuate contrast appearance. The empirical finding is controversial because non-veridical perception challenges the idea that attention prioritizes processing resources to make perception better, and because philosophers have used the finding to challenge representational accounts of mental experience. The present experiments confirm that when evaluated with comparison paradigms exogenous cues increase the apparent contrast. In addition, contrast appearance was also changed by simply changing the purpose of a secondary task. When comparison and discrimination reports were combined in a single experiment there was a behavioral disassociation: contrast enhanced for comparison responses, but did not change for discrimination judgments, even when participants made both types of judgment for a single stimulus. That a single object can have multiple simultaneous appearances leads inescapably to the conclusion that our unitary mental experience is illusory. PMID:27022928

  19. Attentional Effects on Phenomenological Appearance: How They Change with Task Instructions and Measurement Methods.

    PubMed

    Anderson, Britt

    2016-01-01

    It has been reported that exogenous cues accentuate contrast appearance. The empirical finding is controversial because non-veridical perception challenges the idea that attention prioritizes processing resources to make perception better, and because philosophers have used the finding to challenge representational accounts of mental experience. The present experiments confirm that when evaluated with comparison paradigms exogenous cues increase the apparent contrast. In addition, contrast appearance was also changed by simply changing the purpose of a secondary task. When comparison and discrimination reports were combined in a single experiment there was a behavioral disassociation: contrast enhanced for comparison responses, but did not change for discrimination judgments, even when participants made both types of judgment for a single stimulus. That a single object can have multiple simultaneous appearances leads inescapably to the conclusion that our unitary mental experience is illusory. PMID:27022928

  20. The Academic Diligence Task (ADT): Assessing Individual Differences in Effort on Tedious but Important Schoolwork

    PubMed Central

    Galla, Brian M.; Plummer, Benjamin D.; White, Rachel E.; Meketon, David; D’Mello, Sidney K.; Duckworth, Angela L.

    2014-01-01

    The current study reports on the development and validation of the Academic Diligence Task (ADT), designed to assess the tendency to expend effort on academic tasks which are tedious in the moment but valued in the long-term. In this novel online task, students allocate their time between solving simple math problems (framed as beneficial for problem solving skills) and, alternatively, playing Tetris or watching entertaining videos. Using a large sample of high school seniors (N = 921), the ADT demonstrated convergent validity with self-report ratings of Big Five conscientiousness and its facets, self-control and grit, as well as discriminant validity from theoretically unrelated constructs, such as Big Five extraversion, openness, and emotional stability, test anxiety, life satisfaction, and positive and negative affect. The ADT also demonstrated incremental predictive validity for objectively measured GPA, standardized math and reading achievement test scores, high school graduation, and college enrollment, over and beyond demographics and intelligence. Collectively, findings suggest the feasibility of online behavioral measures to assess noncognitive individual differences that predict academic outcomes. PMID:25258470

  1. Exploring General Versus Task-Specific Assessments of Metacognition in University Chemistry Students: A Multitrait-Multimethod Analysis

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wang, Chia-Yu

    2015-08-01

    The purpose of this study was to use multiple assessments to investigate the general versus task-specific characteristics of metacognition in dissimilar chemistry topics. This mixed-method approach investigated the nature of undergraduate general chemistry students' metacognition using four assessments: a self-report questionnaire, assessment of concurrent metacognitive skills, confidence judgment, and calibration accuracy. Data were analyzed using a multitrait-multimethod correlation matrix, supplemented with regression analyses, and qualitative interpretation. Significant correlations among task performance, calibration accuracy, and concurrent metacognition within a task suggest a converging relationship. Confidence judgment, however, was not associated with task performance or the other metacognitive measurements. The results partially support hypotheses of both general and task-specific metacognition. However, general and task-specific properties of metacognition were detected using different assessments. Case studies were constructed for two participants to illustrate how concurrent metacognition varied within different task demands. Considerations of how each assessment may appropriate different metacognitive constructs and the importance of the alignment of analytical constructs when using multiple assessments are discussed. These results may help lead to improvements in metacognition assessment and may provide insights into designs of effective metacognitive instruction.

  2. Apolipoprotein E Genotype Linked to Spatial Gait Characteristics: Predictors of Cognitive Dual Task Gait Change

    PubMed Central

    MacAulay, Rebecca K.; Allaire, Ted; Brouillette, Robert; Foil, Heather; Bruce-Keller, Annadora J.; Keller, Jeffrey N.

    2016-01-01

    Background Developing measures to detect preclinical Alzheimer’s Disease is vital, as prodromal stage interventions may prove more efficacious in altering the disease’s trajectory. Gait changes may serve as a useful clinical heuristic that precedes cognitive decline. This study provides the first systematic investigation of gait characteristics relationship with relevant demographic, physical, genetic (Apolipoprotein E genotype), and health risk factors in non-demented older adults during a cognitive-load dual task walking condition. Methods The GAITRite system provided objective measurement of gait characteristics in APOE-e4 “carriers” (n = 75) and “non-carriers” (n = 224). Analyses examined stride length and step time gait characteristics during simple and dual-task (spelling five-letter words backwards) conditions in relation to demographic, physical, genetic, and health risk factors. Results Slower step time and shorter stride length associated with older age, greater health risk, and worse physical performance (ps < .05). Men and women differed in height, gait characteristics, health risk factors and global cognition (ps < .05). APOE-e4 associated with a higher likelihood of hypercholesterolemia and overall illness index scores (ps < .05). No genotype-sex interactions on gait were found. APOE-e4 was linked to shorter stride length and greater dual-task related disturbances in stride length. Conclusions Stride length has been linked to heightened fall risk, attention decrements and structural brain changes in older adults. Our results indicate that stride length is a useful behavioral marker of cognitive change that is associated with genetic risk for AD. Sex disparities in motor decline may be a function of health risk factors. PMID:27486898

  3. The use of a task-based exposure assessment model (T-BEAM) for assessment of metal fume exposures during welding and thermal cutting.

    PubMed

    Susi, P; Goldberg, M; Barnes, P; Stafford, E

    2000-01-01

    Elevated disease rates have been documented among construction workers for cancer, pneumonoconiosis, asbestosis, and silicosis. However, methodologies for exposure assessment in construction are not well described in the U.S. literature. Working through a cooperative agreement with the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH), the Center to Protect Workers' Rights--a research arm of the Building and Construction Trades Department, AFL-CIO--has developed and used a "Task-Based Exposure Assessment Model (T-BEAM)" for construction. The characteristic elements of T-BEAM are: (1) an emphasis on the identification, implementation, and evaluation of engineering and work practice controls; and (2) use of experienced, specially trained construction workers (construction safety and health specialists) in the exposure assessment process. A task-based approach was used because tasks, or specialized skills, form the single greatest thread of continuity in the dynamic environment of construction. Workers in the construction industry come from several crafts and are typically employed by a large number of contractors throughout their career. Project types (e.g., residential or industrial rehabilitation) are also highly variable and present unique health risks. Finally, because construction involves building, renovating, or dismantling physical surroundings, the work site is constantly changing. Between 1995 and 1996, T-BEAM was applied to the collection of approximately 200 personal exposure measurements associated with "hot work tasks"--welding and thermal cutting. Data were collected with the assistance of specially trained, journeyman ironworkers, pipe fitters, and boilermakers on nine construction sites located throughout the United States. Portable local exhaust ventilation was provided to participating contractors with the intent of measuring its impact on exposure. Results indicate that data collected in a standardized, systematic fashion from multiple

  4. Uncertainty-dependent activity within the ventral striatum predicts task-related changes in response strategy.

    PubMed

    Buzzell, George A; Roberts, Daniel M; Fedota, John R; Thompson, James C; Parasuraman, Raja; McDonald, Craig G

    2016-04-01

    Recent neuroimaging work has demonstrated that the ventral striatum (VS) encodes confidence in perceptual decisions. However, it remains unclear whether perceptual uncertainty can signal the need to adapt behavior (such as by responding more cautiously) and whether such behavioral changes are related to uncertainty-dependent activity within the VS. Changes in response strategy have previously been observed following errors and are associated with both medial frontal cortex (MFC) and VS, two components of the performance-monitoring network. If uncertainty can elicit changes in response strategy (slowing), then one might hypothesize that these changes rely on the performance-monitoring network. In the present study, we investigated the link between perceptual uncertainty and task-related behavioral adaptations (response slowing and accuracy increases), as well as how such behavioral changes relate to uncertainty-dependent activity within MFC and VS. Our participants performed a two-choice perceptual decision-making task in which perceptual uncertainty was reported on each trial while behavioral and event-related functional magnetic resonance imaging data were collected. Analysis of the behavioral data revealed that uncertain (but correct) responses led to slowing on subsequent trials, a phenomenon that was positively correlated with increased accuracy. Critically, post-uncertainty slowing was negatively correlated with the VS activity elicited by uncertain responses. In agreement with previous reports, increases in MFC activation were observed for uncertain responses, although MFC activity was not correlated with post-uncertainty slowing. These results suggest that perceptual uncertainty can serve as a signal to adapt one's response strategy and that such behavioral changes are closely tied to the VS, a key node in the performance-monitoring network. PMID:26453582

  5. How sequential changes in reward magnitude modulate cognitive flexibility: Evidence from voluntary task switching.

    PubMed

    Fröber, Kerstin; Dreisbach, Gesine

    2016-02-01

    There is much evidence that the prospect of reward modulates cognitive control in terms of more stable behavior. Increases in expected reward magnitude, however, have been suggested to increase flexible behavior as evidenced by reduced switch costs. In a series of experiments, the authors provide evidence that this increased cognitive flexibility following increases in reward magnitude also promotes deliberate task switching. A modified task switching paradigm with forced- and free-choice trials and varying reward prospects was used. In Experiments 1-3 the prospect of a reward increase as compared to unchanged high reward increased voluntary switching rate (VSR). Experiment 4 showed that the prospect of a reward decrease did not alter VSR as compared to unchanged low reward. Experiment 5 used a standard voluntary task switching procedure and confirmed VSR effects found in Experiments 1-4. These findings are strong evidence for a mechanism that biases the cognitive system either toward stability or flexibility depending on changing reward expectation. Results are discussed within the framework of the adaptive gain theory. PMID:26237619

  6. Consideration of environmental change in performance assessments.

    PubMed

    Pinedo, P; Thorne, M; Egan, M; Calvez, M; Kautsky, U

    2005-01-01

    Depending on the particular circumstances in which a post-closure performance assessment of a radioactive waste repository is made, it may be appropriate to follow simple or more complex approaches in characterising the biosphere. Several different Example Reference Biospheres were explored in BIOMASS Theme 1 to address a range of issues that arise. Here, consideration is given to Example Reference Biospheres relevant to representing the implications of changes that may occur within the biosphere system during the period over which releases of radionuclides from a disposal facility might take place. Mechanisms of change considered include those extrinsic and intrinsic to the system of interest. An overall methodology for incorporating environmental change into assessments is proposed. This includes screening of primary mechanisms of change; identification of possible time sequences of change; development of a coherent description of the regional landscape response for each time sequence; integration of source term and geosphere-biosphere interface information; identification and description of one or more time series of assessment biospheres; and evaluation of the advantages and disadvantages of simulating the effects of sequences of biosphere systems and the transitions between them, or of defining a set of biosphere systems to be represented individually in a non-sequential analysis. The usefulness of the methodology is explored in two site-specific examples and one generic example. PMID:16198459

  7. The 2008 California climate change assessment

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Franco, G.

    2008-12-01

    In 2005, Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger signed Executive Order S-03-05, which laid the foundation for California's ambitious greenhouse gas mitigation reduction efforts. The 2020 goal is now codified in state law requiring bringing 2020 emissions to the 1990 levels. The Executive Order also mandates the preparation of biennial updates on the latest climate change science, potential impacts, and assessment of the state's efforts to manage its climate change risks through various adaptation options. In 2006, the first of these mandated scientific assessments (The Governor's Scenarios Report) was released. Based on new scientific studies conducted in the interim, the next assessment, the '2008 Governor's Scenarios Report' is currently in preparation. It has three principal goals: (1) to improve the assessment of climate changes for California and associated impacts on key physical and biological indicators; (2) to begin to translate these physical and biological impacts into sectoral economic impacts; and (3) to begin to develop and evaluate strategies for key sectors or regions for adapting to climate changes already underway. Contributors to this session will present some of this new research to the scientific community. Among the most exciting new insights are impacts assessments for the all-important water and agricultural sectors, coastal areas, public health and related air quality and environmental justice issues, the forestry and energy sectors. This presentation will give an overview of the overall effort which will result in about 35 scientific papers from different research institutions in California. All of the studies are interlinked in such a way as to produce a consistent overall assessment.

  8. Development of a Virtual Approach-Avoidance Task to Assess Alcohol Cravings.

    PubMed

    Kim, Deok-Yong; Lee, Jang-Han

    2015-12-01

    The aim of the present study was to develop a new approach-avoidance task in a virtual environment that could be used to assess the response to virtual alcohol-related situations by heavy social drinkers (HSDs) and light social drinkers (LSDs). Thirty-six male undergraduates (18 HSDs, 18 LSDs) responded to signals when they pulled or pushed a joystick after watching scenes of alcohol- or nonalcohol-related situations in a virtual environment. The HSD group spent more time on moving away from alcohol-related situations than nonalcohol-related situations. We found that the HSD group had difficulty in avoiding alcohol-related situations in the virtual environment. The Virtual Approach-Avoidance Task might more accurately measure the levels of social drinkers' craving to drink as it provides realistic situations and allows individuals to be immersed in virtual environments. PMID:26544667

  9. Key tasks in healthcare marketing: assessing importance and current level of knowledge.

    PubMed

    Kennett, Pamela A; Henson, Steve W; Crow, Stephen M; Hartman, Sandra J

    2005-01-01

    When examining the healthcare industry, the need for continuing education in internal functions (i.e., HR management) has been documented. However, equally important to success in the healthcare industry are external functions such as marketing. In an expansion of research on internally focused functions, we report findings from an exploratory study designed to examine the perceptions of executives about managerial skill needs in the externally focused area of marketing. Specifically, we examine eight key tasks in marketing and ask executives to rate the level of knowledge required for each and then to assess current, or actual, levels of knowledge in the field. Findings suggest that pricing strategy, product strategy, and segmentation and targeting were the tasks that require the most knowledge for healthcare marketers, and that they do, in fact, perceive various gaps in all of the areas examined. Implications and suggestions for future research are provided. PMID:16318012

  10. Upper-Extremity Dual-Task Function: An Innovative Method to Assess Cognitive Impairment in Older Adults

    PubMed Central

    Toosizadeh, Nima; Najafi, Bijan; Reiman, Eric M.; Mager, Reine M.; Veldhuizen, Jaimeson K.; O’Connor, Kathy; Zamrini, Edward; Mohler, Jane

    2016-01-01

    Background: Difficulties in orchestrating simultaneous tasks (i.e., dual-tasking) have been associated with cognitive impairments in older adults. Gait tests have been commonly used as the motor task component for dual-task assessments; however, many older adults have mobility impairments or there is a lack of space in busy clinical settings. We assessed an upper-extremity function (UEF) test as an alternative motor task to study the dual-task motor performance in older adults. Methods: Older adults (≥65 years) were recruited, and cognitive ability was measured using the Montreal cognitive assessment (MoCA). Participants performed repetitive elbow flexion with their maximum pace, once single-task, and once while counting backward by one (dual-task). Single- and dual-task gait tests were also performed with normal speed. Three-dimensional kinematics was measured both from upper-extremity and lower-extremity using wearable sensors to determine UEF and gait parameters. Parameters were compared between the cognitively impaired and healthy groups using analysis of variance tests, while controlling for age, gender, and body mass index (BMI). Correlations between UEF and gait parameters for dual-task and dual-task cost were assessed using linear regression models. Results: Sixty-seven older adults were recruited (age = 83 ± 10 years). Based on MoCA, 10 (15%) were cognitively impaired. While no significant differences were observed in the single-task condition, within the dual-task condition, the cognitively impaired group showed significantly less arm flexion speed (62%, d = 1.51, p = 0.02) and range of motion (27%, d = 0.93, p = 0.04), and higher speed variability (88%, d = 1.82, p < 0.0001) compared to the cognitively intact group, when adjusted with age, gender, and BMI. Significant correlations were observed between UEF speed parameters and gait stride velocity for dual-task condition (r = 0.55, p < 0.0001) and dual-task cost (r = 0.28, p = 0.03). Conclusion: We