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Sample records for affect task performance

  1. Luminance controlled pupil size affects Landolt C task performance

    SciTech Connect

    Berman, S.M. ); Fein, G. ); Jewett, D.L.; Ashford, F. )

    1993-02-01

    Subjects judged the orientation of a 2 min. gap Landolt C located at a distance of 2.4 m. The stimuli were presented in central vision on a CRT, at low to medium contrast. The effects of varying the spectrum and luminance of surround lighting were assessed on both pupil size (measured using infrared pupillometry during task performance) and task accuracy. The task display was protected from the surround lighting, so that its luminance and contrast could be varied independently of the changes in the surround lighting. Indirect surround illumination was provided by either two illuminants of very different scotopic spectral content but with the same photopic luminance (Experiments 1 and 3), or by using the same illuminant at two different luminance levels (Experiment 2). In Experiment 3, the effect of changing surround spectrum was compared to the effect of varying task background luminance between 12 cd/m[sup 2] and 73 cd/m[sup 2]. In all experiments, scotopically enhanced surround lighting produced pupil areas which were reduced by almost 50% in comparison with surround lighting with relatively less scotopic luminance. Concomitantly there was improvement in Landolt C task performance with the scotopically enhanced surround lighting at all contrast and luminance levels. In these experiments, smaller pupil sizes were associated with significantly better visual-task performance in spite of lower task retinal illuminance when compared to the condition with larger pupils. These results suggest that changes in surround spectrum can compensate for the effect on task performance of a reduction in task luminance and supports the hypothesis that lighting energy savings could accrue in the workplace by shifting lamp spectra to obtain greater scotopic efficacy.

  2. Luminance controlled pupil size affects Landolt C task performance. Revision

    SciTech Connect

    Berman, S.M.; Fein, G.; Jewett, D.L.; Ashford, F.

    1993-02-01

    Subjects judged the orientation of a 2 min. gap Landolt C located at a distance of 2.4 m. The stimuli were presented in central vision on a CRT, at low to medium contrast. The effects of varying the spectrum and luminance of surround lighting were assessed on both pupil size (measured using infrared pupillometry during task performance) and task accuracy. The task display was protected from the surround lighting, so that its luminance and contrast could be varied independently of the changes in the surround lighting. Indirect surround illumination was provided by either two illuminants of very different scotopic spectral content but with the same photopic luminance (Experiments 1 and 3), or by using the same illuminant at two different luminance levels (Experiment 2). In Experiment 3, the effect of changing surround spectrum was compared to the effect of varying task background luminance between 12 cd/m{sup 2} and 73 cd/m{sup 2}. In all experiments, scotopically enhanced surround lighting produced pupil areas which were reduced by almost 50% in comparison with surround lighting with relatively less scotopic luminance. Concomitantly there was improvement in Landolt C task performance with the scotopically enhanced surround lighting at all contrast and luminance levels. In these experiments, smaller pupil sizes were associated with significantly better visual-task performance in spite of lower task retinal illuminance when compared to the condition with larger pupils. These results suggest that changes in surround spectrum can compensate for the effect on task performance of a reduction in task luminance and supports the hypothesis that lighting energy savings could accrue in the workplace by shifting lamp spectra to obtain greater scotopic efficacy.

  3. Embodied Information in Cognitive Tasks: Haptic Weight Sensations Affect Task Performance and Processing Style

    PubMed Central

    Kaspar, Kai; Vennekötter, Alina

    2015-01-01

    Research in the field of embodied cognition showed that incidental weight sensations influence peoples’ judgments about a variety of issues and objects. Most studies found that heaviness compared to lightness increases the perception of importance, seriousness, and potency. In two experiments, we broadened this scope by investigating the impact of weight sensations on cognitive performance. In Experiment 1, we found that the performance in an anagram task was reduced when participants held a heavy versus a light clipboard in their hands. Reduced performance was accompanied by an increase in the perceived effort. In Experiment 2, a heavy clipboard elicited a specific response heuristic in a two-alternative forced-choice task. Participants showed a significant right side bias when holding a heavy clipboard in their hands. After the task, participants in the heavy clipboard condition reported to be more frustrated than participants in the light clipboard condition. In both experiments, we did not find evidence for mediated effects that had been proposed by previous literature. Overall, the results indicate that weight effects go beyond judgment formation and highlight new avenues for future research. PMID:26421084

  4. Embodied Information in Cognitive Tasks: Haptic Weight Sensations Affect Task Performance and Processing Style.

    PubMed

    Kaspar, Kai; Vennekötter, Alina

    2015-01-01

    Research in the field of embodied cognition showed that incidental weight sensations influence peoples' judgments about a variety of issues and objects. Most studies found that heaviness compared to lightness increases the perception of importance, seriousness, and potency. In two experiments, we broadened this scope by investigating the impact of weight sensations on cognitive performance. In Experiment 1, we found that the performance in an anagram task was reduced when participants held a heavy versus a light clipboard in their hands. Reduced performance was accompanied by an increase in the perceived effort. In Experiment 2, a heavy clipboard elicited a specific response heuristic in a two-alternative forced-choice task. Participants showed a significant right side bias when holding a heavy clipboard in their hands. After the task, participants in the heavy clipboard condition reported to be more frustrated than participants in the light clipboard condition. In both experiments, we did not find evidence for mediated effects that had been proposed by previous literature. Overall, the results indicate that weight effects go beyond judgment formation and highlight new avenues for future research. PMID:26421084

  5. To branch out or stay focused? Affective shifts differentially predict organizational citizenship behavior and task performance.

    PubMed

    Yang, Liu-Qin; Simon, Lauren S; Wang, Lei; Zheng, Xiaoming

    2016-06-01

    We draw from personality systems interaction (PSI) theory (Kuhl, 2000) and regulatory focus theory (Higgins, 1997) to examine how dynamic positive and negative affective processes interact to predict both task and contextual performance. Using a twice-daily diary design over the course of a 3-week period, results from multilevel regression analysis revealed that distinct patterns of change in positive and negative affect optimally predicted contextual and task performance among a sample of 71 employees at a medium-sized technology company. Specifically, within persons, increases (upshifts) in positive affect over the course of a workday better predicted the subsequent day's organizational citizenship behavior (OCB) when such increases were coupled with decreases (downshifts) in negative affect. The optimal pattern of change in positive and negative affect differed, however, in predicting task performance. That is, upshifts in positive affect over the course of the workday better predicted the subsequent day's task performance when such upshifts were accompanied by upshifts in negative affect. The contribution of our findings to PSI theory and the broader affective and motivation regulation literatures, along with practical implications, are discussed. (PsycINFO Database Record PMID:26882443

  6. The Functional Effect of Teacher Positive and Neutral Affect on Task Performance of Students with Significant Disabilities

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Park, Sungho; Singer, George H. S.; Gibson, Mary

    2005-01-01

    The study uses an alternating treatment design to evaluate the functional effect of teacher's affect on students' task performance. Tradition in special education holds that teachers should engage students using positive and enthusiastic affect for task presentations and praise. To test this assumption, we compared two affective conditions. Three…

  7. Self-Reported Stickiness of Mind-Wandering Affects Task Performance.

    PubMed

    van Vugt, Marieke K; Broers, Nico

    2016-01-01

    When asked to perform a certain task, we typically spend a decent amount of time thinking thoughts unrelated to that task-a phenomenon referred to as "mind-wandering." It is thought that this mind-wandering is driven at least in part by our unfinished goals and concerns. Previous studies have shown that just after presenting a participant with their own concerns, their reports of task-unrelated thinking increased somewhat. However, effects of these concerns on task performance were somewhat inconsistent. In this study we take the opposite approach, and examine whether task performance depends on the self-reported thought content. Specifically, a particularly intriguing aspect of mind-wandering that has hitherto received little attention is the difficulty of disengaging from it, in other words, the "stickiness" of the thoughts. While presenting participants with their own concerns was not associated with clear effects on task performance, we showed that the reports of off-task thinking and variability of response times increased with the amount of self-reported stickiness of thoughts. This suggests that the stickiness of mind-wandering is a relevant variable, and participants are able to meaningfully report on it.

  8. Self-Reported Stickiness of Mind-Wandering Affects Task Performance.

    PubMed

    van Vugt, Marieke K; Broers, Nico

    2016-01-01

    When asked to perform a certain task, we typically spend a decent amount of time thinking thoughts unrelated to that task-a phenomenon referred to as "mind-wandering." It is thought that this mind-wandering is driven at least in part by our unfinished goals and concerns. Previous studies have shown that just after presenting a participant with their own concerns, their reports of task-unrelated thinking increased somewhat. However, effects of these concerns on task performance were somewhat inconsistent. In this study we take the opposite approach, and examine whether task performance depends on the self-reported thought content. Specifically, a particularly intriguing aspect of mind-wandering that has hitherto received little attention is the difficulty of disengaging from it, in other words, the "stickiness" of the thoughts. While presenting participants with their own concerns was not associated with clear effects on task performance, we showed that the reports of off-task thinking and variability of response times increased with the amount of self-reported stickiness of thoughts. This suggests that the stickiness of mind-wandering is a relevant variable, and participants are able to meaningfully report on it. PMID:27242636

  9. Self-Reported Stickiness of Mind-Wandering Affects Task Performance

    PubMed Central

    van Vugt, Marieke K.; Broers, Nico

    2016-01-01

    When asked to perform a certain task, we typically spend a decent amount of time thinking thoughts unrelated to that task–a phenomenon referred to as “mind-wandering.” It is thought that this mind-wandering is driven at least in part by our unfinished goals and concerns. Previous studies have shown that just after presenting a participant with their own concerns, their reports of task-unrelated thinking increased somewhat. However, effects of these concerns on task performance were somewhat inconsistent. In this study we take the opposite approach, and examine whether task performance depends on the self-reported thought content. Specifically, a particularly intriguing aspect of mind-wandering that has hitherto received little attention is the difficulty of disengaging from it, in other words, the “stickiness” of the thoughts. While presenting participants with their own concerns was not associated with clear effects on task performance, we showed that the reports of off-task thinking and variability of response times increased with the amount of self-reported stickiness of thoughts. This suggests that the stickiness of mind-wandering is a relevant variable, and participants are able to meaningfully report on it. PMID:27242636

  10. Thinking about the weather: How display salience and knowledge affect performance in a graphic inference task.

    PubMed

    Hegarty, Mary; Canham, Matt S; Fabrikant, Sara I

    2010-01-01

    Three experiments examined how bottom-up and top-down processes interact when people view and make inferences from complex visual displays (weather maps). Bottom-up effects of display design were investigated by manipulating the relative visual salience of task-relevant and task-irrelevant information across different maps. Top-down effects of domain knowledge were investigated by examining performance and eye fixations before and after participants learned relevant meteorological principles. Map design and knowledge interacted such that salience had no effect on performance before participants learned the meteorological principles; however, after learning, participants were more accurate if they viewed maps that made task-relevant information more visually salient. Effects of display design on task performance were somewhat dissociated from effects of display design on eye fixations. The results support a model in which eye fixations are directed primarily by top-down factors (task and domain knowledge). They suggest that good display design facilitates performance not just by guiding where viewers look in a complex display but also by facilitating processing of the visual features that represent task-relevant information at a given display location. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2009 APA, all rights reserved).

  11. Emotional task management: neural correlates of switching between affective and non-affective task-sets

    PubMed Central

    Reeck, Crystal

    2015-01-01

    Although task-switching has been investigated extensively, its interaction with emotionally salient task content remains unclear. Prioritized processing of affective stimulus content may enhance accessibility of affective task-sets and generate increased interference when switching between affective and non-affective task-sets. Previous research has demonstrated that more dominant task-sets experience greater switch costs, as they necessitate active inhibition during performance of less entrenched tasks. Extending this logic to the affective domain, the present experiment examined (a) whether affective task-sets are more dominant than non-affective ones, and (b) what neural mechanisms regulate affective task-sets, so that weaker, non-affective task-sets can be executed. While undergoing functional magnetic resonance imaging, participants categorized face stimuli according to either their gender (non-affective task) or their emotional expression (affective task). Behavioral results were consistent with the affective task dominance hypothesis: participants were slower to switch to the affective task, and cross-task interference was strongest when participants tried to switch from the affective to the non-affective task. These behavioral costs of controlling the affective task-set were mirrored in the activation of a right-lateralized frontostriatal network previously implicated in task-set updating and response inhibition. Connectivity between amygdala and right ventrolateral prefrontal cortex was especially pronounced during cross-task interference from affective features. PMID:25552571

  12. Human factors with nonhumans - Factors that affect computer-task performance

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Washburn, David A.

    1992-01-01

    There are two general strategies that may be employed for 'doing human factors research with nonhuman animals'. First, one may use the methods of traditional human factors investigations to examine the nonhuman animal-to-machine interface. Alternatively, one might use performance by nonhuman animals as a surrogate for or model of performance by a human operator. Each of these approaches is illustrated with data in the present review. Chronic ambient noise was found to have a significant but inconsequential effect on computer-task performance by rhesus monkeys (Macaca mulatta). Additional data supported the generality of findings such as these to humans, showing that rhesus monkeys are appropriate models of human psychomotor performance. It is argued that ultimately the interface between comparative psychology and technology will depend on the coordinated use of both strategies of investigation.

  13. Causal attribution and affective response as mediated by task performance and self-acceptance.

    PubMed

    Green, T D; Bailey, R C; Zinser, O; Williams, D E

    1994-12-01

    Predictions derived from cognitive consistency theories, self-esteem theories, and ego-serving-bias theory concerning how students would make attributional and affective responses to their academic performance were investigated. 202 university students completed a measure of self-acceptance of their college ability and made attributional and affective responses to an hypothetical examination performance. Analyses showed that students receiving positive feedback perceived greater internal causality and responded with greater positive affect than students receiving negative feedback. Self-acceptance did not moderate the attributions or affective reactions. The results supported the ego-serving-bias theory and provided partial support for self-esteem theory. Findings did not support predictions from cognitive-consistency theory.

  14. How Explicit and Implicit Test Instructions in an Implicit Learning Task Affect Performance

    PubMed Central

    Witt, Arnaud; Puspitawati, Ira; Vinter, Annie

    2013-01-01

    Typically developing children aged 5 to 8 years were exposed to artificial grammar learning. Following an implicit exposure phase, half of the participants received neutral instructions at test while the other half received instructions making a direct, explicit reference to the training phase. We first aimed to assess whether implicit learning operated in the two test conditions. We then evaluated the differential impact of age on learning performances as a function of test instructions. The results showed that performance did not vary as a function of age in the implicit instructions condition, while age effects emerged when explicit instructions were employed at test. However, performance was affected differently by age and the instructions given at test, depending on whether the implicit learning of short or long units was assessed. These results suggest that the claim that the implicit learning process is independent of age needs to be revised. PMID:23326409

  15. Identity-level representations affect unfamiliar face matching performance in sequential but not simultaneous tasks.

    PubMed

    Menon, Nadia; White, David; Kemp, Richard I

    2015-01-01

    According to cognitive and neurological models of the face-processing system, faces are represented at two levels of abstraction. First, image-based pictorial representations code a particular instance of a face and include information that is unrelated to identity-such as lighting, pose, and expression. Second, at a more abstract level, identity-specific representations combine information from various encounters with a single face. Here we tested whether identity-level representations mediate unfamiliar face matching performance. Across three experiments we manipulated identity attributions to pairs of target images and measured the effect on subsequent identification decisions. Participants were instructed that target images were either two photos of the same person (1ID condition) or photos of two different people (2ID condition). This manipulation consistently affected performance in sequential matching: 1ID instructions improved accuracy on "match" trials and caused participants to adopt a more liberal response bias than the 2ID condition. However, this manipulation did not affect performance in simultaneous matching. We conclude that identity-level representations, generated in working memory, influence the amount of variation tolerated between images, when making identity judgements in sequential face matching. PMID:25686094

  16. Thinking about the Weather: How Display Salience and Knowledge Affect Performance in a Graphic Inference Task

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Hegarty, Mary; Canham, Matt S.; Fabrikant, Sara I.

    2010-01-01

    Three experiments examined how bottom-up and top-down processes interact when people view and make inferences from complex visual displays (weather maps). Bottom-up effects of display design were investigated by manipulating the relative visual salience of task-relevant and task-irrelevant information across different maps. Top-down effects of…

  17. Differences in cortical activity between methamphetamine-dependent and healthy individuals performing a facial affect matching task.

    PubMed

    Payer, Doris E; Lieberman, Matthew D; Monterosso, John R; Xu, Jiansong; Fong, Timothy W; London, Edythe D

    2008-01-11

    As individuals who abuse methamphetamine (MA) often exhibit socially maladaptive behaviors such as violence and aggression, it is possible that they respond abnormally to social cues. To investigate this issue, we exposed 12 MA-dependent participants (abstinent 5-16 days) and 12 healthy comparison participants to fearful and angry faces while they performed an affect matching task during functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI). Although the groups did not differ in task performance, the healthy participants showed more task-related activity than the MA-dependent participants in a set of cortical regions consisting of the ventrolateral prefrontal cortex (VLPFC), temporoparietal junction (TPJ), anterior and posterior temporal cortex, and fusiform gyrus in the right hemisphere, and the cuneus in the left hemisphere. In contrast, the MA-dependent participants showed more task-related activity than the healthy participants in the dorsal anterior cingulate cortex (dACC). As expected, the task elicited activation of the amygdala in both groups; however, contrary to expectation, we found no difference between groups in this activation. Dorsal ACC hyperactivity, along with high self-ratings of hostility and interpersonal sensitivity in the MA-dependent group, suggest a hyper-sensitivity to socially threatening cues in the MA-dependent participants, while lower VLPFC activation could point to a deficit in integrating socio-emotional information and/or regulating this limbic hyperactivity. Additional activation differences in neural circuitry related to social cognition (TPJ, anterior, and posterior temporal cortex) suggest further socio-emotional deficits. Together, the results point to cortical abnormalities that could underlie the socially inappropriate behaviors often shown by individuals who abuse MA. PMID:17964741

  18. Generalizing Screen Inferiority--Does the Medium, Screen versus Paper, Affect Performance Even with Brief Tasks?

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Sidi, Yael; Ophir, Yael; Ackerman, Rakefet

    2016-01-01

    Screen inferiority in performance and metacognitive processes has been repeatedly found with text learning. Common explanations for screen inferiority relate to technological and physiological disadvantages associated with extensive reading on screen. However, recent studies point to lesser recruitment of mental effort on screen than on paper.…

  19. The use of a displacement device negatively affects the performance of dogs (Canis familiaris) in visible object displacement tasks

    PubMed Central

    Müller, Corsin A.; Riemer, Stefanie; Range, Friederike; Huber, Ludwig

    2014-01-01

    Visible and invisible displacement tasks have been used widely for comparative studies of animals’ understanding of object permanence, with evidence accumulating that some species can solve invisible displacement tasks and thus reach Piagetian stage 6 of object permanence. In contrast, dogs appear to rely on associative cues, such as the location of the displacement device, during invisible displacement tasks. It remains unclear, however, whether dogs, and other species that failed in invisible displacement tasks, do so due to their inability to form a mental representation of the target object, or simply due to the involvement of a more salient but potentially misleading associative cue, the displacement device. Here we show that the use of a displacement device impairs the performance of dogs also in visible displacement tasks: their search accuracy was significantly lower when a visible displacement was performed with a displacement device, and only two of initially 42 dogs passed the sham-baiting control conditions. The negative influence of the displacement device in visible displacement tasks may be explained by strong associative cues overriding explicit information about the target object’s location, reminiscent of an overshadowing effect, and/or object individuation errors as the target object is placed within the displacement device and moves along a spatiotemporally identical trajectory. Our data suggest that a comprehensive appraisal of a species’ performance in object permanence tasks should include visible displacement tasks with the same displacement device used in invisible displacements, which typically has not been done in the past. PMID:24611641

  20. Can stereotype threat affect motor performance in the absence of explicit monitoring processes? Evidence using a strength task.

    PubMed

    Chalabaev, Aïna; Brisswalter, Jeanick; Radel, Rémi; Coombes, Stephen A; Easthope, Christopher; Clément-Guillotin, Corentin

    2013-04-01

    Previous evidence shows that stereotype threat impairs complex motor skills through increased conscious monitoring of task performance. Given that one-step motor skills may not be susceptible to these processes, we examined whether performance on a simple strength task may be reduced under stereotype threat. Forty females and males performed maximum voluntary contractions under stereotypical or nullified-stereotype conditions. Results showed that the velocity of force production within the first milliseconds of the contraction decreased in females when the negative stereotype was induced, whereas maximal force did not change. In males, the stereotype induction only increased maximal force. These findings suggest that stereotype threat may impair motor skills in the absence of explicit monitoring processes, by influencing the planning stage of force production. PMID:23535978

  1. Can stereotype threat affect motor performance in the absence of explicit monitoring processes? Evidence using a strength task.

    PubMed

    Chalabaev, Aïna; Brisswalter, Jeanick; Radel, Rémi; Coombes, Stephen A; Easthope, Christopher; Clément-Guillotin, Corentin

    2013-04-01

    Previous evidence shows that stereotype threat impairs complex motor skills through increased conscious monitoring of task performance. Given that one-step motor skills may not be susceptible to these processes, we examined whether performance on a simple strength task may be reduced under stereotype threat. Forty females and males performed maximum voluntary contractions under stereotypical or nullified-stereotype conditions. Results showed that the velocity of force production within the first milliseconds of the contraction decreased in females when the negative stereotype was induced, whereas maximal force did not change. In males, the stereotype induction only increased maximal force. These findings suggest that stereotype threat may impair motor skills in the absence of explicit monitoring processes, by influencing the planning stage of force production.

  2. Tablet Keyboard Configuration Affects Performance, Discomfort and Task Difficulty for Thumb Typing in a Two-Handed Grip

    PubMed Central

    Trudeau, Matthieu B.; Catalano, Paul J.; Jindrich, Devin L.; Dennerlein, Jack T.

    2013-01-01

    When holding a tablet computer with two hands, the touch keyboard configuration imposes postural constraints on the user because of the need to simultaneously hold the device and type with the thumbs. Designers have provided users with several possible keyboard configurations (device orientation, keyboard layout and location). However, potential differences in performance, usability and postures among these configurations have not been explored. We hypothesize that (1) the narrower standard keyboard layout in the portrait orientation leads to lower self-reported discomfort and less reach than the landscape orientation; (2) a split keyboard layout results in better overall outcomes compared to the standard layout; and (3) the conventional bottom keyboard location leads to the best outcomes overall compared to other locations. A repeated measures laboratory experiment of 12 tablet owners measured typing speed, discomfort, task difficulty, and thumb/wrist joint postures using an active marker system during typing tasks for different combinations of device orientation (portrait and landscape), keyboard layout (standard and split), and keyboard location (bottom, middle, top). The narrower standard keyboard with the device in the portrait orientation was associated with less discomfort (least squares mean (and S.E.) 2.9±0.6) than the landscape orientation (4.5±0.7). Additionally, the split keyboard decreased the amount of reaching required by the thumb in the landscape orientation as defined by a reduced range of motion and less MCP extension, which may have led to reduced discomfort (2.7±0.6) compared to the standard layout (4.5±0.7). However, typing speed was greater for the standard layout (127±5 char./min.) compared to the split layout (113±4 char./min.) regardless of device orientation and keyboard location. Usage guidelines and designers can incorporate these findings to optimize keyboard design parameters and form factors that promote user performance and

  3. Comparison versus Contrast: Task Specifics Affect Category Acquisition

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Ankowski, Amber A.; Vlach, Haley A.; Sandhofer, Catherine M.

    2013-01-01

    A large literature has documented that comparison and contrast lead to better performance in a variety of tasks. However, studies of comparison and contrast present contradictory conclusions as to when and how these processes benefit learners. Across four studies, we examined how the specifics of the comparison and contrast task affect performance…

  4. Predictive performance models and multiple task performance

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Wickens, Christopher D.; Larish, Inge; Contorer, Aaron

    1989-01-01

    Five models that predict how performance of multiple tasks will interact in complex task scenarios are discussed. The models are shown in terms of the assumptions they make about human operator divided attention. The different assumptions about attention are then empirically validated in a multitask helicopter flight simulation. It is concluded from this simulation that the most important assumption relates to the coding of demand level of different component tasks.

  5. Task Importance Affects Event-based Prospective Memory Performance in Adults with HIV-Associated Neurocognitive Disorders and HIV-infected Young Adults with Problematic Substance Use

    PubMed Central

    Woods, Steven Paul; Doyle, Katie L.; Morgan, Erin E.; Naar-King, Sylvie; Outlaw, Angulique Y.; Nichols, Sharon L.; Loft, Shayne

    2014-01-01

    Objective Two experiments were conducted to examine the effects of task importance on event-based prospective memory (PM) in separate samples of adults with HIV-associated Neurocognitive Disorders (HAND) and HIV-infected young adults with Substance Use Disorders (SUD). Method All participants completed three conditions of an ongoing lexical decision task: 1) without PM task requirements; 2) with PM task requirements that emphasized the importance of the ongoing task; and 3) with PM task requirements that emphasized the importance of the PM task. Results In both experiments, all HIV+ groups showed the expected increase in response costs to the ongoing task when the PM task’s importance was emphasized. In Experiment 1, individuals with HAND showed significantly lower PM accuracy as compared to HIV+ subjects without HAND when the importance of the ongoing task was emphasized, but improved significantly and no longer differed from HIV+ subjects without HAND when the PM task was emphasized. A similar pattern of findings emerged in Experiment 2, whereby HIV+ young adults with SUD (especially cannabis) showed significant improvements in PM accuracy when the PM task was emphasized. Conclusions Findings suggest that both HAND and SUD may increase the amount of cognitive attentional resources that need to be allocated to support PM performance in persons living with HIV infection. PMID:24834469

  6. Can short-term oral fine motor training affect precision of task performance and induce cortical plasticity of the jaw muscles?

    PubMed

    Zhang, Hong; Kumar, Abhishek; Kothari, Mohit; Luo, Xiaoping; Trulsson, Mats; Svensson, Krister G; Svensson, Peter

    2016-07-01

    The aim was to test the hypothesis that short-term oral sensorimotor training of the jaw muscles would increase the precision of task performance and induce neuroplastic changes in the corticomotor pathways, related to the masseter muscle. Fifteen healthy volunteers performed six series with ten trials of an oral sensorimotor task. The task was to manipulate and position a spherical chocolate candy in between the anterior teeth and split it into two equal halves. The precision of the task performance was evaluated by comparing the ratio between the two split halves. A series of "hold-and-split" tasks was also performed before and after the training. The hold force and split force along with the electromyographic (EMG) activity of jaw muscles were recorded. Motor-evoked potentials and cortical motor maps of the right masseter muscle were evoked by transcranial magnetic stimulation. There was a significant effect of series on the precision of the task performance during the short-term oral sensorimotor training (P < 0.002). The hold force during the "hold-and-split" task was significantly lower after training than before the short-term training (P = 0.011). However, there was no change in the split force and the EMG activity of the jaw muscles before and after the training. Further, there was a significant increase in the amplitude of the motor-evoked potentials (P < 0.016) and in the motor cortex map areas (P = 0.033), after the short-term oral sensorimotor training. Therefore, short-term oral sensorimotor task training increased the precision of task performance and induced signs of neuroplastic changes in the corticomotor pathways, related to the masseter muscle.

  7. Can short-term oral fine motor training affect precision of task performance and induce cortical plasticity of the jaw muscles?

    PubMed

    Zhang, Hong; Kumar, Abhishek; Kothari, Mohit; Luo, Xiaoping; Trulsson, Mats; Svensson, Krister G; Svensson, Peter

    2016-07-01

    The aim was to test the hypothesis that short-term oral sensorimotor training of the jaw muscles would increase the precision of task performance and induce neuroplastic changes in the corticomotor pathways, related to the masseter muscle. Fifteen healthy volunteers performed six series with ten trials of an oral sensorimotor task. The task was to manipulate and position a spherical chocolate candy in between the anterior teeth and split it into two equal halves. The precision of the task performance was evaluated by comparing the ratio between the two split halves. A series of "hold-and-split" tasks was also performed before and after the training. The hold force and split force along with the electromyographic (EMG) activity of jaw muscles were recorded. Motor-evoked potentials and cortical motor maps of the right masseter muscle were evoked by transcranial magnetic stimulation. There was a significant effect of series on the precision of the task performance during the short-term oral sensorimotor training (P < 0.002). The hold force during the "hold-and-split" task was significantly lower after training than before the short-term training (P = 0.011). However, there was no change in the split force and the EMG activity of the jaw muscles before and after the training. Further, there was a significant increase in the amplitude of the motor-evoked potentials (P < 0.016) and in the motor cortex map areas (P = 0.033), after the short-term oral sensorimotor training. Therefore, short-term oral sensorimotor task training increased the precision of task performance and induced signs of neuroplastic changes in the corticomotor pathways, related to the masseter muscle. PMID:26914481

  8. Affective biasing of choices in gambling task decision making.

    PubMed

    Hinson, John M; Whitney, Paul; Holben, Heather; Wirick, Aaron K

    2006-09-01

    The proponents of the somatic marker hypothesis presume that rational decision making is guided by emotional reactions that are developed from prior experience. Supporting evidence for the hypothesis comes almost exclusively from the short-term affective reactions that are learned during the course of a hypothetical decision-making task--the gambling task (GT). We examined GT performance and affective reactions to choices when those choices were biased by words that had preexisting affective value. In one experiment, affectively valued words directly signaled good and bad choices. A congruent relation between affective value of word and choice outcome improved GT performance, whereas an incongruent relation greatly interfered with performance. In another experiment, affectively valued words were maintained as a working memory (WM) load between GT choices. A WM load with affectively positive words somewhat improved GT performance, whereas affectively negative words interfered with performance. Somatic markers-indicated by differential anticipatory skin conductance response (SCR) amplitude for good and bad choices-appeared at a point in the GT session when choice performance was superior. However, differential SCR developed during the session after good choice performance was already established. These results indicate that preexisting affective biases can influence GT decision making. In addition, the somatic markers that are regular accompaniments of GT decision making appeared to be temporally lagging indicators of choice performance. PMID:17243355

  9. Affective biasing of choices in gambling task decision making.

    PubMed

    Hinson, John M; Whitney, Paul; Holben, Heather; Wirick, Aaron K

    2006-09-01

    The proponents of the somatic marker hypothesis presume that rational decision making is guided by emotional reactions that are developed from prior experience. Supporting evidence for the hypothesis comes almost exclusively from the short-term affective reactions that are learned during the course of a hypothetical decision-making task--the gambling task (GT). We examined GT performance and affective reactions to choices when those choices were biased by words that had preexisting affective value. In one experiment, affectively valued words directly signaled good and bad choices. A congruent relation between affective value of word and choice outcome improved GT performance, whereas an incongruent relation greatly interfered with performance. In another experiment, affectively valued words were maintained as a working memory (WM) load between GT choices. A WM load with affectively positive words somewhat improved GT performance, whereas affectively negative words interfered with performance. Somatic markers-indicated by differential anticipatory skin conductance response (SCR) amplitude for good and bad choices-appeared at a point in the GT session when choice performance was superior. However, differential SCR developed during the session after good choice performance was already established. These results indicate that preexisting affective biases can influence GT decision making. In addition, the somatic markers that are regular accompaniments of GT decision making appeared to be temporally lagging indicators of choice performance.

  10. Does language dominance affect cognitive performance in bilinguals? Lifespan evidence from preschoolers through older adults on card sorting, Simon, and metalinguistic tasks

    PubMed Central

    Gathercole, Virginia C. Mueller; Thomas, Enlli M.; Kennedy, Ivan; Prys, Cynog; Young, Nia; Viñas Guasch, Nestor; Roberts, Emily J.; Hughes, Emma K.; Jones, Leah

    2014-01-01

    This study explores the extent to which a bilingual advantage can be observed for three tasks in an established population of fully fluent bilinguals from childhood through adulthood. Welsh-English simultaneous and early sequential bilinguals, as well as English monolinguals, aged 3 years through older adults, were tested on three sets of cognitive and executive function tasks. Bilinguals were Welsh-dominant, balanced, or English-dominant, with only Welsh, Welsh and English, or only English at home. Card sorting, Simon, and a metalinguistic judgment task (650, 557, and 354 participants, respectively) reveal little support for a bilingual advantage, either in relation to control or globally. Primarily there is no difference in performance across groups, but there is occasionally better performance by monolinguals or persons dominant in the language being tested, and in one case-in one condition and in one age group-lower performance by the monolinguals. The lack of evidence for a bilingual advantage in these simultaneous and early sequential bilinguals suggests the need for much closer scrutiny of what type of bilingual might demonstrate the reported effects, under what conditions, and why. PMID:24550853

  11. Acute physical exercise affected processing efficiency in an auditory attention task more than processing effectiveness.

    PubMed

    Dutke, Stephan; Jaitner, Thomas; Berse, Timo; Barenberg, Jonathan

    2014-02-01

    Research on effects of acute physical exercise on performance in a concurrent cognitive task has generated equivocal evidence. Processing efficiency theory predicts that concurrent physical exercise can increase resource requirements for sustaining cognitive performance even when the level of performance is unaffected. This hypothesis was tested in a dual-task experiment. Sixty young adults worked on a primary auditory attention task and a secondary interval production task while cycling on a bicycle ergometer. Physical load (cycling) and cognitive load of the primary task were manipulated. Neither physical nor cognitive load affected primary task performance, but both factors interacted on secondary task performance. Sustaining primary task performance under increased physical and/or cognitive load increased resource consumption as indicated by decreased secondary task performance. Results demonstrated that physical exercise effects on cognition might be underestimated when only single task performance is the focus.

  12. Task appraisals, emotions, and performance goal orientation.

    PubMed

    Fisher, Cynthia D; Minbashian, Amirali; Beckmann, Nadin; Wood, Robert E

    2013-03-01

    We predict real-time fluctuations in employees' positive and negative emotions from concurrent appraisals of the immediate task situation and individual differences in performance goal orientation. Task confidence, task importance, positive emotions, and negative emotions were assessed 5 times per day for 3 weeks in an experience sampling study of 135 managers. At the within-person level, appraisals of task confidence, task importance, and their interaction predicted momentary positive and negative emotions as hypothesized. Dispositional performance goal orientation was expected to moderate emotional reactivity to appraisals of task confidence and task importance. The hypothesized relationships were significant in the case of appraisals of task importance. Those high on performance goal orientation reacted to appraisals of task importance with stronger negative and weaker positive emotions than those low on performance goal orientation. PMID:23276116

  13. Why Does Background Noise Debilitate Simple Task Performance?

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Kohfeld, David L.; Goedecke, Dennis W.

    An earlier study indicated that a subject's performance on simple mental tasks, such as tracing soluble and unsoluble geometric designs and proofreading, was not affected by background noise regardless of its intensity, unpredictability, or uncontrollability. But, since background noise did have a significant effect on postnoise task performance,…

  14. Task usefulness affects perception of rivalrous images.

    PubMed

    Chopin, Adrien; Mamassian, Pascal

    2010-12-01

    In bistable perception, several interpretations of the same physical stimulus are perceived in alternation. If one interpretation appears to help the observer to be successful in an auxiliary task, will that interpretation be seen more often than the other? We addressed this question using rivalrous stimuli. One of the elicited percepts presented an advantage for a separate visual search task that was run in close temporal proximity to the rivalry task. We found that the percept that was useful for the search task became dominant over the alternate percept. Observers were not aware of the manipulation that made one percept more useful, which suggests that usefulness was learned implicitly. The learning influenced only the first percept of each rivalrous presentation, but the bias persisted even when the useful percept was no longer useful. The long-lasting aspect of the effect distinguishes it from other documented attentional effects on bistable perception. Therefore, using implicit learning, we demonstrated that task usefulness can durably change the appearance of a stimulus.

  15. Human Performance on the Temporal Bisection Task

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Kopec, Charles D.; Brody, Carlos D.

    2010-01-01

    The perception and processing of temporal information are tasks the brain must continuously perform. These include measuring the duration of stimuli, storing duration information in memory, recalling such memories, and comparing two durations. How the brain accomplishes these tasks, however, is still open for debate. The temporal bisection task,…

  16. Exposure of baboons to combined 60 Hz electric and magnetic fields does not produce work stoppage or affect operant performance on a match-to-sample task

    SciTech Connect

    Orr, J.L.; Rogers, W.R.; Smith, H.D.

    1995-12-31

    The authors examined the effects of combined 60 Hz electric and magnetic field (EMF) exposure on performance of delayed match-to-sample (MTS) procedure involving the flash rate of a light as the stimulus. Six baboons (Papio cynocephalus) fully acquired the task; four others functioned accurately only when cued. All ten subjects were assigned to EMF-exposed or sham-exposed groups of five and were used to test for a work-stoppage effect that was previously observed with initial exposure to electric fields (EF) of 30 or 60 kV/m. Here, the authors report the results of two experiments, each consisting of 6 week preexposure, exposure, and postexposure periods. They found no evidence of work stoppage with fields of 6 kV/m and 50 {micro}T (0.5 G) or with 30 kV/m and 100 {micro}T (1.0 G). In neither experiment was there evidence of an adverse effect of 60 Hz EMF exposure on MTS performance.

  17. Effects of a Coactor's Focus of Attention on Task Performance

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Bockler, Anne; Knoblich, Gunther; Sebanz, Natalie

    2012-01-01

    Coactors take into account certain aspects of each other's tasks even when this is not required to perform their own task. The present experiments investigated whether the way a coactor allocates attention affects one's own attentional relation to stimuli that are attended jointly (Experiment 1), individually (Experiment 2), or in parallel…

  18. Mood states determine the degree of task shielding in dual-task performance.

    PubMed

    Zwosta, Katharina; Hommel, Bernhard; Goschke, Thomas; Fischer, Rico

    2013-01-01

    Current models of multitasking assume that dual-task performance and the degree of multitasking are affected by cognitive control strategies. In particular, cognitive control is assumed to regulate the amount of shielding of the prioritised task from crosstalk from the secondary task. We investigated whether and how task shielding is influenced by mood states. Participants were exposed to two short film clips, one inducing high and one inducing low arousal, of either negative or positive content. Negative mood led to stronger shielding of the prioritised task (i.e., less crosstalk) than positive mood, irrespective of arousal. These findings support the assumption that emotional states determine the parameters of cognitive control and play an important role in regulating dual-task performance.

  19. Oculomotor tasks affect differently postural control in healthy children.

    PubMed

    Bucci, Maria Pia; Ajrezo, Layla; Wiener-Vacher, Sylvette

    2015-11-01

    Eye movements affect postural stability in children. The present study focuses on the effect of different types of eye movements on postural stability in healthy children. Both eye movements and postural stability have been recorded in 51 healthy children from 6.3 to 15.5 years old. Eye movements were recorded binocularly with a video oculography (MobilEBT(®)), and postural stability was measured while child was standing on a force platform (TechnoConcept(®)). Children performed three oculomotor tasks: saccades, pursuits and reading a text silently. We measured the number of saccades made in the three oculomotor tasks, the number of words read, and the surface area, the length and mean velocity of the center of pressure (CoP). According to previous studies, postural control improves with age until 10-12 years. Saccades toward a target as well as during a reading task reduce significantly the CoP displacement and its velocity, while during pursuit eye movements all children increase postural parameters (i.e., the surface area, the length and mean velocity of the CoP). These results suggest the presence of an interaction between the oculomotor control and the postural system. Visual attention to perform saccades (to stationary targets or to words) influences postural stability more than the frequency of saccade triggering does. PMID:26096315

  20. The minimum entropy principle and task performance.

    PubMed

    Guastello, Stephen J; Gorin, Hillary; Huschen, Samuel; Peters, Natalie E; Fabisch, Megan; Poston, Kirsten; Weinberger, Kelsey

    2013-07-01

    According to the minimum entropy principle, efficient cognitive performance is produced with a neurocognitive strategy that involves a minimum of degrees of freedom. Although high performance is often regarded as consistent performance as well, some variability in performance still remains which allows the person to adapt to changing goal conditions or fatigue. The present study investigated the connection between performance, entropy in performance, and four task-switching strategies. Fifty-one undergraduates performed 7 different computer-based cognitive tasks producing sets of 49 responses under instructional conditions requiring task quotas or no quotas. The temporal patterns of performance were analyzed using orbital decomposition to extract pattern types and lengths, which were then compared with regard to Shannon entropy, topological entropy, and overall performance. Task switching strategies from a previous study were available for the same participants as well. Results indicated that both topological entropy and Shannon entropy were negatively correlated with performance. Some task-switching strategies produced lower entropy in performance than others. Stepwise regression showed that the top three predictors of performance were Shannon entropy and arithmetic and spatial abilities. Additional implications for the prediction of work performance with cognitive ability measurements and the applicability of the minimum entropy principle to multidimensional performance criteria and team work are discussed.

  1. Task 5: Architecture sensitivity to STME performance

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Schnackel, J. A.

    1992-09-01

    This document was prepared for Task 5: Architecture Sensitivity to Space Transportation Main Engine (STME) Performance. Information provided in this report documents the architecture sensitivities with respect to STME performance parameters. Suggested STME thrust level was driven by Task 5 sensitivities and Task 4 vehicle configurations. Recommendations on STME thrust level are presented in this report. Sensitivities to STME parameters and vehicle system parameters were evaluated. Design of Experiment (DOE) approaches were used to understand the relative importance of each parameter. Suggested sensitivity parameters and their respective ranges were provided to the Task 5 lead. Our recommendation on analysis approach for the sensitivities was a central composite faced design. Task 5 sensitivities should be updated following final Task 4 architecture recommendations. A suggested analysis approach is provided in the analysis section of this report (Part C, Appendix I, Analysis). This analysis approach was used on Advanced Launch System (ALS) Phase 2 to improve the evaluation of alternate engine designs and vehicle subsystem evaluations. It is suggested that the analysis approach outlined in Part C be utilized to update Task when final Task 4 architecture information is available. Contents of this submittal include: Part A, Narrative Summary; Part B, View Graphs with facing page text; Part C, Appendix I, Analysis Part C, Appendix II, Data.

  2. The Curvilinear Relationship between State Neuroticism and Momentary Task Performance

    PubMed Central

    Debusscher, Jonas; Hofmans, Joeri; De Fruyt, Filip

    2014-01-01

    A daily diary and two experience sampling studies were carried out to investigate curvilinearity of the within-person relationship between state neuroticism and task performance, as well as the moderating effects of within-person variation in momentary job demands (i.e., work pressure and task complexity). In one, results showed that under high work pressure, the state neuroticism–task performance relationship was best described by an exponentially decreasing curve, whereas an inverted U-shaped curve was found for tasks low in work pressure, while in another study, a similar trend was visible for task complexity. In the final study, the state neuroticism–momentary task performance relationship was a linear one, and this relationship was moderated by momentary task complexity. Together, results from all three studies showed that it is important to take into account the moderating effects of momentary job demands because within-person variation in job demands affects the way in which state neuroticism relates to momentary levels of task performance. Specifically, we found that experiencing low levels of state neuroticism may be most beneficial in high demanding tasks, whereas more moderate levels of state neuroticism are optimal under low momentary job demands. PMID:25238547

  3. Affective differences in Iowa Gambling Task performance associated with sexual risk taking and substance use among HIV-positive and HIV-negative men who have sex with men

    PubMed Central

    Golub, Sarit A.; Thompson, Louisa I.; Kowalczyk, William J.

    2016-01-01

    We investigated the relationship between emotional distress and decision-making in sexual risk and substance use behavior among 174 (ages 25 to 50, 53% black) men who have sex with men (MSM), a population at increased risk for HIV. The sample was stratified by HIV status. Measures of affective decision-making (Iowa Gambling Task, IGT, Bechara et al., 1994), depression, anxiety, sex acts, and substance use during the past 60 days were collected at our research center. Negative binomial regression models were used to examine the relationship between age, HIV status, anxiety, depression, and IGT performance in the prediction of number of risky sex acts and substance use days. Among those without anxiety or depression, both number of risky sex acts and drug use days decreased with better performance during risky trials (i.e., last two blocks) of the IGT. For those with higher rates of anxiety, but not depression, IGT risk trial performance and risky sex acts increased concomitantly. Anxiety also interacted with IGT performance across all trials to predict substance use, such that anxiety was associated with greater substance use among those with better IGT performance. The opposite was true for those with depression, but only during risk trials. HIV-positive participants reported fewer substance use days than HIV-negative participants, but there was no difference in association between behavior and IGT performance by HIV status. Our findings suggest that anxiety may exacerbate risk-taking behavior when affective decision-making ability is intact. The relationship between affective decision-making and risk taking may be sensitive to different profiles of emotional distress, as well as behavioral context. Investigations of affective decision-making in sexual risk taking and substance use should examine different distress profiles separately, with implications for HIV prevention efforts. PMID:26745769

  4. Manipulator Performance Evaluation Using Fitts' Taping Task

    SciTech Connect

    Draper, J.V.; Jared, B.C.; Noakes, M.W.

    1999-04-25

    Metaphorically, a teleoperator with master controllers projects the user's arms and hands into a re- mote area, Therefore, human users interact with teleoperators at a more fundamental level than they do with most human-machine systems. Instead of inputting decisions about how the system should func- tion, teleoperator users input the movements they might make if they were truly in the remote area and the remote machine must recreate their trajectories and impedance. This intense human-machine inter- action requires displays and controls more carefully attuned to human motor capabilities than is neces- sary with most systems. It is important for teleoperated manipulators to be able to recreate human trajectories and impedance in real time. One method for assessing manipulator performance is to observe how well a system be- haves while a human user completes human dexterity tasks with it. Fitts' tapping task has been, used many times in the past for this purpose. This report describes such a performance assessment. The International Submarine Engineering (ISE) Autonomous/Teleoperated Operations Manipulator (ATOM) servomanipulator system was evalu- ated using a generic positioning accuracy task. The task is a simple one but has the merits of (1) pro- ducing a performance function estimate rather than a point estimate and (2) being widely used in the past for human and servomanipulator dexterity tests. Results of testing using this task may, therefore, allow comparison with other manipulators, and is generically representative of a broad class of tasks. Results of the testing indicate that the ATOM manipulator is capable of performing the task. Force reflection had a negative impact on task efficiency in these data. This was most likely caused by the high resistance to movement the master controller exhibited with the force reflection engaged. Measurements of exerted forces were not made, so it is not possible to say whether the force reflection helped partici- pants

  5. Using Performance Task Data to Improve Instruction

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Abbott, Amy L.; Wren, Douglas G.

    2016-01-01

    Two well-accepted ideas among educators are (a) performance assessment is an effective means of assessing higher-order thinking skills and (b) data-driven instruction planning is a valuable tool for optimizing student learning. This article describes a locally developed performance task (LDPT) designed to measure critical thinking, problem…

  6. Does a Speaking Task Affect Second Language Comprehensibility?

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Crowther, Dustin; Trofimovich, Pavel; Isaacs, Talia; Saito, Kazuya

    2015-01-01

    The current study investigated task effects on listener perception of second language (L2) comprehensibility (ease of understanding). Sixty university-level adult speakers of English from 4 first language (L1) backgrounds (Chinese, Romance, Hindi, Farsi), with 15 speakers per group, were recorded performing 2 tasks (IELTS long-turn speaking task…

  7. Mental and psychomotor task performance in noise

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    1984-01-01

    The possible adverse effects of noise on mental and psychomotor task performance were a matter of practical concern for centuries and continue to be a matter of scientific controversy. A review indicates that except for the masking or interferences with the hearing of sounds needed to perform a given task, noise does not necessarily interfer with work performance. However, because of difficulties in the experimental control of some of these possible effects, the results of research on work performance in noise were inconsistent and difficult to encompass in any simple theoretical construct. Indeed, reviews of research in this area conclude that simple generalizations about possible effects of noise on work performance cannot be made. Nevertheless, several general theories were put forth.

  8. [Performance indicators: the role of 'task uncertainty'].

    PubMed

    van Dishoeck, Anne-Margreet; Lingsma, Hester F; Steyerberg, Ewout W

    2010-01-01

    In recent years, quality of care has occupied a prominent place in health care. Different performance indicators are used to assess the quality of care. There is some debate about the value of outcome versus process indicators in measuring aspects of quality of care. Van de Geer et al. carried out a field study in a medical rehabilitation centre in the Netherlands in which four low task uncertainty teams ('hand trauma', 'heart failure', 'amputation', 'chronic pain'), and four high task uncertainty teams ('children with developmental coordination disorder', 'Parkinson disease', 'young children (aged 1-4 years) with developmental disorders', 'acquired brain injuries') participated in the development of performance indicators. They concluded that task uncertainty is an important factor to be considered in the development of indicators, and in the choice between the use of process and outcome indicators. Notably, outcome indicators are only useful in health problems with little variation and little task uncertainty, while many tasks are complex and uncertain. The participation of health care professionals in the development of quality indicators is, therefore, very important.

  9. Performance Tasks and the Pedagogy of Broadway

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Chun, Marc

    2012-01-01

    If educators want students to practice and prepare for challenges they might eventually face, there are a number of useful strategies to connect academic learning to the "real world." One is to ask students to complete what are variously called "performance tasks," "case studies," "simulations," or "project- or problem-based learning units."…

  10. Pointing Device Performance in Steering Tasks.

    PubMed

    Senanayake, Ransalu; Goonetilleke, Ravindra S

    2016-06-01

    Use of touch-screen-based interactions is growing rapidly. Hence, knowing the maneuvering efficacy of touch screens relative to other pointing devices is of great importance in the context of graphical user interfaces. Movement time, accuracy, and user preferences of four pointing device settings were evaluated on a computer with 14 participants aged 20.1 ± 3.13 years. It was found that, depending on the difficulty of the task, the optimal settings differ for ballistic and visual control tasks. With a touch screen, resting the arm increased movement time for steering tasks. When both performance and comfort are considered, whether to use a mouse or a touch screen for person-computer interaction depends on the steering difficulty. Hence, a input device should be chosen based on the application, and should be optimized to match the graphical user interface. PMID:27216944

  11. Shared Learning Shapes Human Performance: Transfer Effects in Task Sharing

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Milanese, Nadia; Iani, Cristina; Rubichi, Sandro

    2010-01-01

    We investigated whether performing a task with a co-actor shapes the way a subsequent task is performed. In four experiments participants were administered a Simon task after practicing a spatial compatibility task with an incompatible S-R mapping. In Experiment 1 they performed both tasks alongside another person; in Experiment 2 they performed…

  12. 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

  13. Action video game experience affects oculomotor performance.

    PubMed

    West, Greg L; Al-Aidroos, Naseem; Pratt, Jay

    2013-01-01

    Action video games have been show to affect a variety of visual and cognitive processes. There is, however, little evidence of whether playing video games can also affect motor action. To investigate the potential link between experience playing action video games and changes in oculomotor action, we tested habitual action video game players (VGPs) and non-video game players (NVGPs) in a saccadic trajectory deviation task. We demonstrate that spatial curvature of a saccadic trajectory towards or away from distractor is profoundly different between VGPs and NVGPs. In addition, task performance accuracy improved over time only in VGPs. Results are discussed in the context of the competing interplay between stimulus-driven motor programming and top-down inhibition during oculomotor execution.

  14. Impact of tasks and users' characteristics on virtual reality performance.

    PubMed

    Tyndiuk, F; Lespinet-Najib, V; Thomas, G; Schlick, C

    2007-06-01

    A better understanding of how users perform virtual reality (VR) tasks may help build better VR interfaces. In this study, we concentrated on the compensatory behavior in VR depending on the tasks and users' characteristics. The tasks characteristics considered were display size (large display vs. desktop monitor) and tasks types (manipulation and travel). The users' characteristics studied were the visual attention abilities and users' satisfaction. Ninety-five subjects participated in the experimentation composed of two parts: the first one consisted in cognitive tests used to evaluate visual attention abilities, and the second one was based on a set of VR tasks. Our result showed that large displays positively affect on performance for some kinds of VR tasks. Moreover, this impact was linked to users' satisfaction and visual attention abilities. Indeed, users with low-level attention abilities and users who preferred the large display took more advantage of large displays. We concluded that large displays can be considered cognitive aids depending on the tasks and users' characteristics.

  15. Promising High Monetary Rewards for Future Task Performance Increases Intermediate Task Performance

    PubMed Central

    Zedelius, Claire M.; Veling, Harm; Bijleveld, Erik; Aarts, Henk

    2012-01-01

    In everyday life contexts and work settings, monetary rewards are often contingent on future performance. Based on research showing that the anticipation of rewards causes improved task performance through enhanced task preparation, the present study tested the hypothesis that the promise of monetary rewards for future performance would not only increase future performance, but also performance on an unrewarded intermediate task. Participants performed an auditory Simon task in which they responded to two consecutive tones. While participants could earn high vs. low monetary rewards for fast responses to every second tone, their responses to the first tone were not rewarded. Moreover, we compared performance under conditions in which reward information could prompt strategic performance adjustments (i.e., when reward information was presented for a relatively long duration) to conditions preventing strategic performance adjustments (i.e., when reward information was presented very briefly). Results showed that high (vs. low) rewards sped up both rewarded and intermediate, unrewarded responses, and the effect was independent of the duration of reward presentation. Moreover, long presentation led to a speed-accuracy trade-off for both rewarded and unrewarded tones, whereas short presentation sped up responses to rewarded and unrewarded tones without this trade-off. These results suggest that high rewards for future performance boost intermediate performance due to enhanced task preparation, and they do so regardless whether people respond to rewards in a strategic or non-strategic manner. PMID:22905145

  16. Effect of task complexity on mental performance during immersion hypothermia.

    PubMed

    Giesbrecht, G G; Arnett, J L; Vela, E; Bristow, G K

    1993-03-01

    The effect of task complexity on the decrement in mental performance during immersion hypothermia was studied. Psychometric tests of varying length and complexity were administered: 1) prior to cold water immersion (baseline); 2) soon after immersion to the neck in cold (8 degrees C) water but prior to any decrease in core temperature; and 3) after 55 to 80 min of immersion when core temperature had decreased 2-4 degrees C. Results indicated that tests placing relatively minimal cognitive demands on individuals, such as auditory attention, the Benton visual recognition test and forward digit span, were unaffected by either initial cold water immersion or central cooling. On the other hand, tests requiring relatively greater mental manipulation and short term memory (i.e., backward digit span) or processing and analysis (i.e., Stroop test) showed a slight improvement upon cold water immersion (perhaps related to increased arousal and/or learning) but a significant decrement following central cooling of 2-4 degrees C. Thus, relatively simple tasks were unaffected by central cooling, whereas more complex tasks were adversely affected. Cold water immersion itself did not interfere with performance of any tasks. Central nervous system cooling probably interferes with mental processing although discomfort and/or the physiological and physical effects of cold on the neuromuscular aspects of speech, required for responses to some of the tasks, may also affect performance.

  17. The influence of a working memory task on affective perception of facial expressions.

    PubMed

    Lim, Seung-Lark; Bruce, Amanda S; Aupperle, Robin L

    2014-01-01

    In a dual-task paradigm, participants performed a spatial location working memory task and a forced two-choice perceptual decision task (neutral vs. fearful) with gradually morphed emotional faces (neutral ∼ fearful). Task-irrelevant word distractors (negative, neutral, and control) were experimentally manipulated during spatial working memory encoding. We hypothesized that, if affective perception is influenced by concurrent cognitive load using a working memory task, task-irrelevant emotional distractors would bias subsequent perceptual decision-making on ambiguous facial expression. We found that when either neutral or negative emotional words were presented as task-irrelevant working-memory distractors, participants more frequently reported fearful face perception - but only at the higher emotional intensity levels of morphed faces. Also, the affective perception bias due to negative emotional distractors correlated with a decrease in working memory performance. Taken together, our findings suggest that concurrent working memory load by task-irrelevant distractors has an impact on affective perception of facial expressions. PMID:25347772

  18. The influence of a working memory task on affective perception of facial expressions.

    PubMed

    Lim, Seung-Lark; Bruce, Amanda S; Aupperle, Robin L

    2014-01-01

    In a dual-task paradigm, participants performed a spatial location working memory task and a forced two-choice perceptual decision task (neutral vs. fearful) with gradually morphed emotional faces (neutral ∼ fearful). Task-irrelevant word distractors (negative, neutral, and control) were experimentally manipulated during spatial working memory encoding. We hypothesized that, if affective perception is influenced by concurrent cognitive load using a working memory task, task-irrelevant emotional distractors would bias subsequent perceptual decision-making on ambiguous facial expression. We found that when either neutral or negative emotional words were presented as task-irrelevant working-memory distractors, participants more frequently reported fearful face perception - but only at the higher emotional intensity levels of morphed faces. Also, the affective perception bias due to negative emotional distractors correlated with a decrease in working memory performance. Taken together, our findings suggest that concurrent working memory load by task-irrelevant distractors has an impact on affective perception of facial expressions.

  19. Investigating Perfect Timesharing: The Relationship between IM-Compatible Tasks and Dual-Task Performance

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Halvorson, Kimberly M.; Ebner, Herschel; Hazeltine, Eliot

    2013-01-01

    Why are dual-task costs reduced with ideomotor (IM) compatible tasks (Greenwald & Shulman, 1973; Lien, Proctor & Allen, 2002)? In the present experiments, we first examine three different measures of single-task performance (pure single-task blocks, mixed blocks, and long stimulus onset asynchrony [SOA] trials in dual-task blocks) and two measures…

  20. Relation of cognitive appraisal to cardiovascular reactivity, affect, and task engagement.

    PubMed

    Maier, Karl J; Waldstein, Shari R; Synowski, Stephen J

    2003-08-01

    The relation of primary cognitive appraisals to cardiovascular reactivity, affect, task engagement, and perceived stress was examined in 56 men (ages 18-29). Systolic blood pressure (SBP), diastolic blood pressure (DBP), heart rate, preejection period, stroke index, cardiac index, and total peripheral resistance were assessed at rest and during performance of a computerized mental arithmetic task. Extending on prior investigations, threat and challenge appraisals were assessed independently from one another and from secondary appraisals. Positive and negative affect, task engagement, and levels of perceived stress were also assessed. Results indicated that threat (R2 =.08, p =.01), challenge (R2 =.14, p =.003), and their interaction (R2 =.11, p =.006) independently predicted DBP reactivity; DBP responses were greatest among participants with a high threat/low challenge pattern of appraisal. Threat appraisals predicted greater negative affect (R2 =.32) and perceived stress (R2 =.48), whereas challenge appraisals were related to greater positive affect (R2 =.44) and task engagement (R2 =.40, ps <.0001). Greater positive affect was correlated with increased SBP and DBP reactivity, and greater levels of task engagement with increased DBP response (ps < or = .002). Results suggest that primary cognitive appraisals are more potent predictors of affect and task engagement than cardiovascular reactivity.

  1. 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…

  2. Developmental and individual differences in performance on phonological synthesis tasks.

    PubMed

    Torgesen, J K; Wagner, R K; Balthazar, M; Davis, C; Morgan, S; Simmons, K; Stage, S; Zirps, F

    1989-06-01

    This study was conducted in order to examine the role of individual differences in working memory and lexical access in accounting for age and reading skill related differences in performance on phonological synthesis tasks. The performance of 28 kindergarten, first-, and second-grade children with normal reading skills, as well as that of 28 reading-disabled second graders, was compared under four testing conditions. The testing conditions were formed by completely crossing rate of presentation of phoneme strings with type of stimulus to be blended (real or nonword). Both independent variables affected performance on the blending tasks, with better performance obtained at faster presentation rates and with real words. There was a developmental discontinuity in overall performance, with the kindergarten children obtaining substantially lower scores than the first or second graders. In the comparison of second-grade good and poor readers, there was a significant interaction between groups, presentation rates, and type of stimulus. The findings are discussed in terms of their implications for a general model of performance on the sound blending task, as well as their value for interpreting individual differences on the task. PMID:2738517

  3. Emotion, working memory task demands and individual differences predict behavior, cognitive effort and negative affect.

    PubMed

    Storbeck, Justin; Davidson, Nicole A; Dahl, Chelsea F; Blass, Sara; Yung, Edwin

    2015-01-01

    We examined whether positive and negative affect motivates verbal and spatial working memory processes, respectively, which have implications for the expenditure of mental effort. We argue that when emotion promotes cognitive tendencies that are goal incompatible with task demands, greater cognitive effort is required to perform well. We sought to investigate whether this increase in cognitive effort impairs behavioural control over a broad domain of self-control tasks. Moreover, we predicted that individuals with higher behavioural inhibition system (BIS) sensitivities would report more negative affect within the goal incompatible conditions because such individuals report higher negative affect during cognitive challenge. Positive or negative affective states were induced followed by completing a verbal or spatial 2-back working memory task. All participants then completed one of three self-control tasks. Overall, we observed that conditions of emotion and working memory incompatibility (positive/spatial and negative/verbal) performed worse on the self-control tasks, and within the incompatible conditions individuals with higher BIS sensitivities reported more negative affect at the end of the study. The combination of findings suggests that emotion and working memory compatibility reduces cognitive effort and impairs behavioural control.

  4. Investigating perfect timesharing: the relationship between IM-compatible tasks and dual-task performance.

    PubMed

    Halvorson, Kimberly M; Ebner, Herschel; Hazeltine, Eliot

    2013-04-01

    Why are dual-task costs reduced with ideomotor (IM) compatible tasks (Greenwald & Shulman, 1973; Lien, Proctor & Allen, 2002)? In the present experiments, we first examine three different measures of single-task performance (pure single-task blocks, mixed blocks, and long stimulus onset asynchrony [SOA] trials in dual-task blocks) and two measures of dual-task performance (simultaneous stimulus presentation blocks and simultaneous stimulus presentation trials in blocks with mixed SOAs), and show that these different measures produce different estimates of the cost. Next we examine whether the near elimination of costs can be explained by assuming that one or both of the tasks bypasses capacity-limited central operations. The results indicate that both tasks must be IM-compatible to nearly eliminate the dual-task costs, suggesting that the relationship between the tasks plays a critical role in overlapping performance. PMID:22866763

  5. Recollective performance advantages for implicit memory tasks.

    PubMed

    Sheldon, Signy A M; Moscovitch, Morris

    2010-10-01

    A commonly held assumption is that processes underlying explicit and implicit memory are distinct. Recent evidence, however, suggests that they may interact more than previously believed. Using the remember-know procedure the current study examines the relation between recollection, a process thought to be exclusive to explicit memory, and performance on two implicit memory tasks, lexical decision and word stem completion. We found that, for both implicit tasks, words that were recollected were associated with greater priming effects than were words given a subsequent familiarity rating or words that had been studied but were not recognised (misses). Broadly, our results suggest that non-voluntary processes underlying explicit memory also benefit priming, a measure of implicit memory. More specifically, given that this benefit was due to a particular aspect of explicit memory (recollection), these results are consistent with some strength models of memory and with Moscovitch's (2008) proposal that recollection is a two-stage process, one rapid and unconscious and the other more effortful and conscious.

  6. Interpersonal synergies: static prehension tasks performed by two actors.

    PubMed

    Solnik, Stanislaw; Reschechtko, Sasha; Wu, Yen-Hsun; Zatsiorsky, Vladimir M; Latash, Mark L

    2016-08-01

    We investigated multidigit synergies stabilizing components of the resultant force vector during joint performance of a static prehension task by two persons as compared to similar tasks performed by a single person using both hands. Subjects transferred the instrumented handle from the right hand to the left hand (one-person condition) or passed that handle to another person (two-person condition) while keeping the handle's position and orientation stationary. Only three digits were involved per hand, the thumb, the index finger, and the middle finger; the forces and moments produced by the digits were measured by six-component sensors. We estimated the performance-stabilizing synergies within the uncontrolled manifold framework by quantifying the intertrial variance structure of digit forces and moments. The analysis was performed at three levels: between hands, between virtual finger and virtual thumb (imagined digits producing the same mechanical variables as the corresponding actual digits combined) produced by the two hands (in both interpersonal and intrapersonal conditions), and between the thumb and virtual finger for one hand only. Additionally, we performed correlation and phase synchronization analyses of resultant tangential forces and internal normal forces. Overall, the one-person conditions were characterized by higher amount of intertrial variance that did not affect resultant normal force components, higher internal components of normal forces, and stronger synchronization of the normal forces generated by the hands. Our observations suggest that in two-person tasks, when participants try to achieve a common mechanical outcome, the performance-stabilizing synergies depend on non-visual information exchange, possibly via the haptic and proprioceptive systems. Therefore, synergies quantified in tasks using visual feedback only may not be generalizable to more natural tasks. PMID:27021074

  7. Group Motivation and Group Task Performance: The Expectancy-Valence Theory Approach.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Nakanishi, Masayuki

    1988-01-01

    Investigated effects of group motivation on group task performance. Created two levels of valence, expectancy and instrumentality. Valence variable reflected on group productivity on unstructured and task persistence measures. Expectancy variable's effect was on task persistence measure. Instrumentality affected group productivity on structured…

  8. Task-irrelevant stimulus salience affects visual search.

    PubMed

    Lamy, Dominique; Zoaris, Loren

    2009-05-01

    The relative contributions of stimulus salience and task-related goals in guiding attention remain an issue of debate. Several studies have demonstrated that top-down factors play an important role, as they often override capture by salient irrelevant objects. However, Yantis and Egeth [Yantis, S., & Egeth, H. E. (1999). On the distinction between visual salience and stimulus-driven attentional capture. Journal of Experimental Psychology: Human Perception and Performance, 25, 661-676.] have made the more radical claim that salience plays no role in visual search unless the observer adopts an attentional set for singletons or "singleton-detection mode". We reexamine their claim while disentangling effects of stimulus salience from effects of attentional set and inter-trial repetition. The results show that stimulus salience guides attention even when salience is task irrelevant.

  9. How Cross-Language Similarity and Task Demands Affect Cognate Recognition

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Dijkstra, Ton; Miwa, Koji; Brummelhuis, Bianca; Sappelli, Maya; Baayen, Harald

    2010-01-01

    This study examines how the cross-linguistic similarity of translation equivalents affects bilingual word recognition. Performing one of three tasks, Dutch-English bilinguals processed cognates with varying degrees of form overlap between their English and Dutch counterparts (e.g., "lamp-lamp" vs. "flood-vloed" vs. "song-lied"). In lexical…

  10. New paradigm for task switching strategies while performing multiple tasks: entropy and symbolic dynamics analysis of voluntary patterns.

    PubMed

    Guastello, Stephen J; Gorin, Hillary; Huschen, Samuel; Peters, Natalie E; Fabisch, Megan; Poston, Kirsten

    2012-10-01

    It has become well established in laboratory experiments that switching tasks, perhaps due to interruptions at work, incur costs in response time to complete the next task. Conditions are also known that exaggerate or lessen the switching costs. Although switching costs can contribute to fatigue, task switching can also be an adaptive response to fatigue. The present study introduces a new research paradigm for studying the emergence of voluntary task switching regimes, self-organizing processes therein, and the possibly conflicting roles of switching costs and minimum entropy. Fifty-four undergraduates performed 7 different computer-based cognitive tasks producing sets of 49 responses under instructional conditions requiring task quotas or no quotas. The sequences of task choices were analyzed using orbital decomposition to extract pattern types and lengths, which were then classified and compared with regard to Shannon entropy, topological entropy, number of task switches involved, and overall performance. Results indicated that similar but different patterns were generated under the two instructional conditions, and better performance was associated with lower topological entropy. Both entropy metrics were associated with the amount of voluntary task switching. Future research should explore conditions affecting the trade-off between switching costs and entropy, levels of automaticity between task elements, and the role of voluntary switching regimes on fatigue.

  11. Questionnaire assessment of estimated radiation effects upon military task performance

    SciTech Connect

    Glickman, A.S.; Winne, P.S.; Morgan, B.B. Jr.; Moe, R.B.

    1984-04-01

    One hundred twenty-five supervisors in four types of U.S. Army combat systems estimated the degree of degradation of military tasks for 30 descriptive symptom complexes associated with various radiation exposures. Results indicated that (a) the relative order of symptom effects were highly consistent across positions and the types of systems, (b) performances were expected to be deleteriously affected under most illness conditions, even mild ones, but incapacitation was not anticipated until illness conditions became quite severe, and (c) the most important factors in estimating performances were fluid loss and fatigability/weakness.

  12. On the importance of Task 1 and error performance measures in PRP dual-task studies

    PubMed Central

    Strobach, Tilo; Schütz, Anja; Schubert, Torsten

    2015-01-01

    The psychological refractory period (PRP) paradigm is a dominant research tool in the literature on dual-task performance. In this paradigm a first and second component task (i.e., Task 1 and Task 2) are presented with variable stimulus onset asynchronies (SOAs) and priority to perform Task 1. The main indicator of dual-task impairment in PRP situations is an increasing Task 2-RT with decreasing SOAs. This impairment is typically explained with some task components being processed strictly sequentially in the context of the prominent central bottleneck theory. This assumption could implicitly suggest that processes of Task 1 are unaffected by Task 2 and bottleneck processing, i.e., decreasing SOAs do not increase reaction times (RTs) and error rates of the first task. The aim of the present review is to assess whether PRP dual-task studies included both RT and error data presentations and statistical analyses and whether studies including both data types (i.e., RTs and error rates) show data consistent with this assumption (i.e., decreasing SOAs and unaffected RTs and/or error rates in Task 1). This review demonstrates that, in contrast to RT presentations and analyses, error data is underrepresented in a substantial number of studies. Furthermore, a substantial number of studies with RT and error data showed a statistically significant impairment of Task 1 performance with decreasing SOA. Thus, these studies produced data that is not primarily consistent with the strong assumption that processes of Task 1 are unaffected by Task 2 and bottleneck processing in the context of PRP dual-task situations; this calls for a more careful report and analysis of Task 1 performance in PRP studies and for a more careful consideration of theories proposing additions to the bottleneck assumption, which are sufficiently general to explain Task 1 and Task 2 effects. PMID:25904890

  13. Tool and Task Analysis Guide for Vocational Welding (150 Tasks). Performance Based Vocational Education.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    John H. Hinds Area Vocational School, Elwood, IN.

    This book contains a task inventory, a task analysis of 150 tasks from that inventory, and a tool list for performance-based welding courses in the state of Indiana. The task inventory and tool list reflect 28 job titles found in Indiana. In the first part of the guide, tasks are listed by these domains: carbon-arc, electron beam, G.M.A.W., gas…

  14. Quantum Tunneling Affects Engine Performance.

    PubMed

    Som, Sibendu; Liu, Wei; Zhou, Dingyu D Y; Magnotti, Gina M; Sivaramakrishnan, Raghu; Longman, Douglas E; Skodje, Rex T; Davis, Michael J

    2013-06-20

    We study the role of individual reaction rates on engine performance, with an emphasis on the contribution of quantum tunneling. It is demonstrated that the effect of quantum tunneling corrections for the reaction HO2 + HO2 = H2O2 + O2 can have a noticeable impact on the performance of a high-fidelity model of a compression-ignition (e.g., diesel) engine, and that an accurate prediction of ignition delay time for the engine model requires an accurate estimation of the tunneling correction for this reaction. The three-dimensional model includes detailed descriptions of the chemistry of a surrogate for a biodiesel fuel, as well as all the features of the engine, such as the liquid fuel spray and turbulence. This study is part of a larger investigation of how the features of the dynamics and potential energy surfaces of key reactions, as well as their reaction rate uncertainties, affect engine performance, and results in these directions are also presented here.

  15. The Task Is Not Enough: Processing Approaches to Task-Based Performance

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Skehan, Peter; Xiaoyue, Bei; Qian, Li; Wang, Zhan

    2012-01-01

    This article reports on three research studies, all of which concern second language task performance. The first focuses on planning, and compares on-line and strategic planning as well as task repetition. The second study examines the role of familiarity on task performance, and compares this with conventional strategic planning. The third study…

  16. The effects of stimulus modality and task integrality: Predicting dual-task performance and workload from single-task levels

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Hart, S. G.; Shively, R. J.; Vidulich, M. A.; Miller, R. C.

    1986-01-01

    The influence of stimulus modality and task difficulty on workload and performance was investigated. The goal was to quantify the cost (in terms of response time and experienced workload) incurred when essentially serial task components shared common elements (e.g., the response to one initiated the other) which could be accomplished in parallel. The experimental tasks were based on the Fittsberg paradigm; the solution to a SternBERG-type memory task determines which of two identical FITTS targets are acquired. Previous research suggested that such functionally integrated dual tasks are performed with substantially less workload and faster response times than would be predicted by suming single-task components when both are presented in the same stimulus modality (visual). The physical integration of task elements was varied (although their functional relationship remained the same) to determine whether dual-task facilitation would persist if task components were presented in different sensory modalities. Again, it was found that the cost of performing the two-stage task was considerably less than the sum of component single-task levels when both were presented visually. Less facilitation was found when task elements were presented in different sensory modalities. These results suggest the importance of distinguishing between concurrent tasks that complete for limited resources from those that beneficially share common resources when selecting the stimulus modalities for information displays.

  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. Success Estimations and Performance in Children as Influenced by Age, Gender, and Task.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Lee, Amelia M.; And Others

    1988-01-01

    Randomly assigned 80 boys and girls in grades 3 and 7 to either a football-related or a dance-related group. Performance expectancies obtained prior to engaging in a novel motor task can be affected by the way a task is presented. Boys were more affected than girls by labels of sex appropriateness. (Author/BJV)

  19. The Effect of Background Music and Background Noise on the Task Performance of Introverts and Extraverts

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Cassidy, Gianna; MacDonald, Raymond A. R.

    2007-01-01

    The study investigated the effects of music with high arousal potential and negative affect (HA), music with low arousal potential and positive affect (LA), and everyday noise, on the cognitive task performance of introverts and extraverts. Forty participants completed five cognitive tasks: immediate recall, free recall, numerical and delayed…

  20. Embodied simulation as part of affective evaluation processes: task dependence of valence concordant EMG activity.

    PubMed

    Weinreich, André; Funcke, Jakob Maria

    2014-01-01

    Drawing on recent findings, this study examines whether valence concordant electromyography (EMG) responses can be explained as an unconditional effect of mere stimulus processing or as somatosensory simulation driven by task-dependent processing strategies. While facial EMG over the Corrugator supercilii and the Zygomaticus major was measured, each participant performed two tasks with pictures of album covers. One task was an affective evaluation task and the other was to attribute the album covers to one of five decades. The Embodied Emotion Account predicts that valence concordant EMG is more likely to occur if the task necessitates a somatosensory simulation of the evaluative meaning of stimuli. Results support this prediction with regard to Corrugator supercilii in that valence concordant EMG activity was only present in the affective evaluation task but not in the non-evaluative task. Results for the Zygomaticus major were ambiguous. Our findings are in line with the view that EMG activity is an embodied part of the evaluation process and not a mere physical outcome.

  1. Aging and Concurrent Task Performance: Cognitive Demand and Motor Control

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Albinet, Cedric; Tomporowski, Phillip D.; Beasman, Kathryn

    2006-01-01

    A motor task that requires fine control of upper limb movements and a cognitive task that requires executive processing--first performing them separately and then concurrently--was performed by 18 young and 18 older adults. The motor task required participants to tap alternatively on two targets, the sizes of which varied systematically. The…

  2. The Effects of Self-Esteem and Task Perception on Goal Setting, Efficacy, and Task Performance.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Tang, Thomas Li-Ping; Reynolds, David Bryan

    This study examined the effects of self-esteem and task perception on goal setting, efficacy, and task performance in 52 recreational dart throwers who were members of two dart organizations. Task perception was manipulated by asking each dart thrower to compete against self, a difficult competitor, and an easy competitor on the same dart game.…

  3. Modeling Task Switching without Switching Tasks: A Short-Term Priming Account of Explicitly Cued Performance

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Schneider, Darryl W.; Logan, Gordon D.

    2005-01-01

    Switch costs in task switching are commonly attributed to an executive control process of task-set reconfiguration, particularly in studies involving the explicit task-cuing procedure. The authors propose an alternative account of explicitly cued performance that is based on 2 mechanisms: priming of cue encoding from residual activation of cues in…

  4. Task demands moderate stereotype threat effects on memory performance.

    PubMed

    Hess, Thomas M; Emery, Lisa; Queen, Tara L

    2009-06-01

    Previous research has demonstrated that older adults' memory performance is adversely affected by the explicit activation of negative stereotypes about aging. In this study, we examined the impact of stereotype threat on recognition memory, with specific interest in (a) the generalizability of previously observed effects, (b) the subjective experience of memory, and (c) the moderating effects of task demands. Older participants subjected to threat performed worse than did those in a nonthreat condition but only when performance constraints were high (i.e., memory decisions had to be made within a limited time frame). This effect was reflected in the subjective experience of memory, with participants in this condition having a lower ratio of "remember" to "know" responses. The absence of threat effects when constraints were minimal provides important boundary information regarding stereotype influences on memory performance.

  5. Lucid dreaming and ventromedial versus dorsolateral prefrontal task performance.

    PubMed

    Neider, Michelle; Pace-Schott, Edward F; Forselius, Erica; Pittman, Brian; Morgan, Peter T

    2011-06-01

    Activity in the prefrontal cortex may distinguish the meta-awareness experienced during lucid dreams from its absence in normal dreams. To examine a possible relationship between dream lucidity and prefrontal task performance, we carried out a prospective study in 28 high school students. Participants performed the Wisconsin Card Sort and Iowa Gambling tasks, then for 1 week kept dream journals and reported sleep quality and lucidity-related dream characteristics. Participants who exhibited a greater degree of lucidity performed significantly better on the task that engages the ventromedial prefrontal cortex (the Iowa Gambling Task), but degree of lucidity achieved did not distinguish performance on the task that engages the dorsolateral prefrontal cortex (the Wisconsin Card Sort Task), nor did it distinguish self-reported sleep quality or baseline characteristics. The association between performance on the Iowa Gambling Task and lucidity suggests a connection between lucid dreaming and ventromedial prefrontal function. PMID:20829072

  6. Lucid Dreaming and Ventromedial versus Dorsolateral Prefrontal Task Performance

    PubMed Central

    Neider, Michelle; Pace-Schott, Edward F.; Forselius, Erica; Pittman, Brian; Morgan, Peter T.

    2010-01-01

    Activity in the prefrontal cortex may distinguish the meta-awareness experienced during lucid dreams from its absence in normal dreams. To examine a possible relationship between dream lucidity and prefrontal task performance, we carried out a prospective study in 28 high school students. Participants performed the Wisconsin Card Sort and Iowa Gambling tasks, then for one week kept dream journals and reported sleep quality and lucidity-related dream characteristics. Participants who exhibited a greater degree of lucidity performed significantly better on the task that engages the ventromedial prefrontal cortex (the Iowa Gambling Task), but degree of lucidity achieved did not distinguish performance on the task that engages the dorsolateral prefrontal cortex (the Wisconsin Card Sort Task), nor did it distinguish self-reported sleep quality or baseline characteristics. The association between performance on the Iowa Gambling Task and lucidity suggests a connection between lucid dreaming and ventromedial prefrontal function. PMID:20829072

  7. Lucid dreaming and ventromedial versus dorsolateral prefrontal task performance.

    PubMed

    Neider, Michelle; Pace-Schott, Edward F; Forselius, Erica; Pittman, Brian; Morgan, Peter T

    2011-06-01

    Activity in the prefrontal cortex may distinguish the meta-awareness experienced during lucid dreams from its absence in normal dreams. To examine a possible relationship between dream lucidity and prefrontal task performance, we carried out a prospective study in 28 high school students. Participants performed the Wisconsin Card Sort and Iowa Gambling tasks, then for 1 week kept dream journals and reported sleep quality and lucidity-related dream characteristics. Participants who exhibited a greater degree of lucidity performed significantly better on the task that engages the ventromedial prefrontal cortex (the Iowa Gambling Task), but degree of lucidity achieved did not distinguish performance on the task that engages the dorsolateral prefrontal cortex (the Wisconsin Card Sort Task), nor did it distinguish self-reported sleep quality or baseline characteristics. The association between performance on the Iowa Gambling Task and lucidity suggests a connection between lucid dreaming and ventromedial prefrontal function.

  8. Aligning Task Control with Desire for Control: Implications for Performance

    PubMed Central

    Ramsey, Alex T.; Etcheverry, Paul E.

    2015-01-01

    The current study examined whether matches between task control and participants' desire for control over their environment lead to better task performance than mismatches. Work control and desire for control were manipulated, and participants engaged in timed tasks. As predicted, performance was higher in cases of match, even when task control and desire for control were low. Task control and desire for control may predict work performance in combination, highlighting the importance of Person-Environment Fit theory for both selection and work design. By manipulating desire for control, our research also explores the potentially state-dependent quality of this individual difference variable. PMID:26045630

  9. Selecting Tasks for Evaluating Human Performance as a Function of Gravity

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Norcross, Jason R.; Gernhardt, Michael L.

    2011-01-01

    A challenge in understanding human performance as a function of gravity is determining which tasks to research. Initial studies began with treadmill walking, which was easy to quantify and control. However, with the development of pressurized rovers, it is less important to optimize human performance for ambulation as pressurized rovers will likely perform gross translation for them. Future crews are likely to spend much of their extravehicular activity (EVA) performing geology, construction,a nd maintenance type tasks. With these types of tasks, people have different performance strategies, and it is often difficult to quantify the task and measure steady-state metabolic rates or perform biomechanical analysis. For many of these types of tasks, subjective feedback may be the only data that can be collected. However, subjective data may not fully support a rigorous scientific comparison of human performance across different gravity levels and suit factors. NASA would benefit from having a wide variety of quantifiable tasks that allow human performance comparison across different conditions. In order to determine which tasks will effectively support scientific studies, many different tasks and data analysis techniques will need to be employed. Many of these tasks and techniques will not be effective, but some will produce quantifiable results that are sensitive enough to show performance differences. One of the primary concerns related to EVA performance is metabolic rate. The higher the metabolic rate, the faster the astronaut will exhaust consumables. The focus of this poster will be on how different tasks affect metabolic rate across different gravity levels.

  10. Effects of Selected Task Performance Criteria at Initiating Adaptive Task Real locations

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Montgomery, Demaris A.

    2001-01-01

    In the current report various performance assessment methods used to initiate mode transfers between manual control and automation for adaptive task reallocation were tested. Participants monitored two secondary tasks for critical events while actively controlling a process in a fictional system. One of the secondary monitoring tasks could be automated whenever operators' performance was below acceptable levels. Automation of the secondary task and transfer of the secondary task back to manual control were either human- or machine-initiated. Human-initiated transfers were based on the operator's assessment of the current task demands while machine-initiated transfers were based on the operators' performance. Different performance assessment methods were tested in two separate experiments.

  11. Continuous Performance Tasks: Not Just about Sustaining Attention

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Roebuck, Hettie; Freigang, Claudia; Barry, Johanna G.

    2016-01-01

    Purpose: Continuous performance tasks (CPTs) are used to measure individual differences in sustained attention. Many different stimuli have been used as response targets without consideration of their impact on task performance. Here, we compared CPT performance in typically developing adults and children to assess the role of stimulus processing…

  12. Individual Differences and Development in Water-Level Task Performance.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Thomas, Hoben; Turner, Geoffrey, F. W.

    1991-01-01

    Presents research on individuals' ability to perform Piaget's water-level task. At almost every age and for each sex, some subjects had high probability of success and some had low. Age-related improvement was not a result of children's increasing accuracy in task performance. Differences in performance between sexes were evident at all ages.…

  13. Cardiac data increase association between self-report and both expert ratings of task load and task performance in flight simulator tasks: An exploratory study.

    PubMed

    Lehrer, Paul; Karavidas, Maria; Lu, Shou-En; Vaschillo, Evgeny; Vaschillo, Bronya; Cheng, Andrew

    2010-05-01

    Seven professional airplane pilots participated in a one-session test in a Boeing 737-800 simulator. Mental workload for 18 flight tasks was rated by experienced test pilots (hereinafter called "expert ratings") and by study participants' self-report on NASA's Task Load Index (TLX) scale. Pilot performance was rated by a check pilot. The standard deviation of R-R intervals (SDNN) significantly added 3.7% improvement over the TLX in distinguishing high from moderate-load tasks and 2.3% improvement in distinguishing high from combined moderate and low-load tasks. Minimum RRI in the task significantly discriminated high- from medium- and low-load tasks, but did not add significant predictive variance to the TLX. The low-frequency/high-frequency (LF:HF) RRI ratio based on spectral analysis of R-R intervals, and ventricular relaxation time were each negatively related to pilot performance ratings independently of TLX values, while minimum and average RRI were positively related, showing added contribution of these cardiac measures for predicting performance. Cardiac results were not affected by controlling either for respiration rate or motor activity assessed by accelerometry. The results suggest that cardiac assessment can be a useful addition to self-report measures for determining flight task mental workload and risk for performance decrements. Replication on a larger sample is needed to confirm and extend the results.

  14. Appraisal, Coping, Task Performance, and Cardiovascular Responses during the Evaluated Speaking Task.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Baggett, H. Lane; And Others

    1996-01-01

    Appraisal, coping, task performance, and cardiovascular responses were examined among men high and low in speech anxiety who prepared and performed a speech under evaluative conditions. Speech-anxious men saw the task as more threatening. They were more stressed, anxious, distracted, and aware of their emotions, focused on the passage of time, and…

  15. The Role of Task Complexity, Modality, and Aptitude in Narrative Task Performance

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Kormos, Judit; Trebits, Anna

    2012-01-01

    The study reported in this paper investigated the relationship between components of aptitude and the fluency, lexical variety, syntactic complexity, and accuracy of performance in two types of written and spoken narrative tasks. We also addressed the question of how narrative performance varies in tasks of different cognitive complexity in the…

  16. Children's Performance on a False-belief Task Is Impaired by Activation of an Evolutionarily-Canalized Response System.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Keenan, Thomas; Ellis, Bruce J.

    2003-01-01

    Two studies examined how task content that activates predator-avoidance affects preschool children's performance on a false-belief task. Findings indicated that the proportion of correct answers on the playmate-avoidance task was greater than that for the predator-avoidance task, suggesting that activation of the predator-avoidance system…

  17. Characterization of task-free and task-performance brain states via functional connectome patterns.

    PubMed

    Zhang, Xin; Guo, Lei; Li, Xiang; Zhang, Tuo; Zhu, Dajiang; Li, Kaiming; Chen, Hanbo; Lv, Jinglei; Jin, Changfeng; Zhao, Qun; Li, Lingjiang; Liu, Tianming

    2013-12-01

    Both resting state fMRI (R-fMRI) and task-based fMRI (T-fMRI) have been widely used to study the functional activities of the human brain during task-free and task-performance periods, respectively. However, due to the difficulty in strictly controlling the participating subject's mental status and their cognitive behaviors during R-fMRI/T-fMRI scans, it has been challenging to ascertain whether or not an R-fMRI/T-fMRI scan truly reflects the participant's functional brain states during task-free/task-performance periods. This paper presents a novel computational approach to characterizing and differentiating the brain's functional status into task-free or task-performance states, by which the functional brain activities can be effectively understood and differentiated. Briefly, the brain's functional state is represented by a whole-brain quasi-stable connectome pattern (WQCP) of R-fMRI or T-fMRI data based on 358 consistent cortical landmarks across individuals, and then an effective sparse representation method was applied to learn the atomic connectome patterns (ACPs) of both task-free and task-performance states. Experimental results demonstrated that the learned ACPs for R-fMRI and T-fMRI datasets are substantially different, as expected. A certain portion of ACPs from R-fMRI and T-fMRI data were overlapped, suggesting some subjects with overlapping ACPs were not in the expected task-free/task-performance brain states. Besides, potential outliers in the T-fMRI dataset were further investigated via functional activation detections in different groups, and our results revealed unexpected task-performances of some subjects. This work offers novel insights into the functional architectures of the brain.

  18. Characterization of Task-free and Task-performance Brain States via Functional Connectome Patterns

    PubMed Central

    Zhang, Xin; Guo, Lei; Li, Xiang; Zhang, Tuo; Zhu, Dajiang; Li, Kaiming; Chen, Hanbo; Lv, Jinglei; Jin, Changfeng; Zhao, Qun; Li, Lingjiang; Liu, Tianming

    2014-01-01

    Both resting state fMRI (R-fMRI) and task-based fMRI (T-fMRI) have been widely used to study the functional activities of the human brain during task-free and task-performance periods, respectively. However, due to the difficulty in strictly controlling the participating subject's mental status and their cognitive behaviors during R-fMRI/T-fMRI scans, it has been challenging to ascertain whether or not an R-fMRI/T-fMRI scan truly reflects the participant's functional brain states during task-free/task-performance periods. This paper presents a novel computational approach to characterizing and differentiating the brain's functional status into task-free or task-performance states, by which the functional brain activities can be effectively understood and differentiated. Briefly, the brain's functional state is represented by a whole-brain quasi-stable connectome pattern (WQCP) of R-fMRI or T-fMRI data based on 358 consistent cortical landmarks across individuals, and then an effective sparse representation method was applied to learn the atomic connectome patterns (ACP) of both task-free and task-performance states. Experimental results demonstrated that the learned ACPs for R-fMRI and T-fMRI datasets are substantially different, as expected. A certain portion of ACPs from R-fMRI and T-fMRI data were overlapped, suggesting some subjects with overlapping ACPs were not in the expected task-free/task-performance brain states. Besides, potential outliers in the T-fMRI dataset were further investigated via functional activation detections in different groups, and our results revealed unexpected task-performances of some subjects. This work offers novel insights into the functional architectures of the brain. PMID:23938590

  19. Task-free MRI predicts individual differences in brain activity during task performance.

    PubMed

    Tavor, I; Parker Jones, O; Mars, R B; Smith, S M; Behrens, T E; Jbabdi, S

    2016-04-01

    When asked to perform the same task, different individuals exhibit markedly different patterns of brain activity. This variability is often attributed to volatile factors, such as task strategy or compliance. We propose that individual differences in brain responses are, to a large degree, inherent to the brain and can be predicted from task-independent measurements collected at rest. Using a large set of task conditions, spanning several behavioral domains, we train a simple model that relates task-independent measurements to task activity and evaluate the model by predicting task activation maps for unseen subjects using magnetic resonance imaging. Our model can accurately predict individual differences in brain activity and highlights a coupling between brain connectivity and function that can be captured at the level of individual subjects. PMID:27124457

  20. Task-free MRI predicts individual differences in brain activity during task performance.

    PubMed

    Tavor, I; Parker Jones, O; Mars, R B; Smith, S M; Behrens, T E; Jbabdi, S

    2016-04-01

    When asked to perform the same task, different individuals exhibit markedly different patterns of brain activity. This variability is often attributed to volatile factors, such as task strategy or compliance. We propose that individual differences in brain responses are, to a large degree, inherent to the brain and can be predicted from task-independent measurements collected at rest. Using a large set of task conditions, spanning several behavioral domains, we train a simple model that relates task-independent measurements to task activity and evaluate the model by predicting task activation maps for unseen subjects using magnetic resonance imaging. Our model can accurately predict individual differences in brain activity and highlights a coupling between brain connectivity and function that can be captured at the level of individual subjects.

  1. Sleep Deprivation and Time-on-Task Performance Decrement in the Rat Psychomotor Vigilance Task

    PubMed Central

    Oonk, Marcella; Davis, Christopher J.; Krueger, James M.; Wisor, Jonathan P.; Van Dongen, Hans P.A.

    2015-01-01

    Study Objectives: The rat psychomotor vigilance task (rPVT) was developed as a rodent analog of the human psychomotor vigilance task (hPVT). We examined whether rPVT performance displays time-on-task effects similar to those observed on the hPVT. Design: The rPVT requires rats to respond to a randomly presented light stimulus to obtain a water reward. Rats were water deprived for 22 h prior to each 30-min rPVT session to motivate performance. We analyzed rPVT performance over time on task and as a function of the response-stimulus interval, at baseline and after sleep deprivation. Setting: The study was conducted in an academic research vivarium. Participants: Male Long-Evans rats were trained to respond to a 0.5 sec stimulus light within 3 sec of stimulus onset. Complete data were available for n = 20 rats. Interventions: Rats performed the rPVT for 30 min at baseline and after 24 h total sleep deprivation by gentle handling. Measurements and Results: Compared to baseline, sleep deprived rats displayed increased performance lapses and premature responses, similar to hPVT lapses of attention and false starts. However, in contrast to hPVT performance, the time-on-task performance decrement was not significantly enhanced by sleep deprivation. Moreover, following sleep deprivation, rPVT response times were not consistently increased after short response-stimulus intervals. Conclusions: The rat psychomotor vigilance task manifests similarities to the human psychomotor vigilance task in global performance outcomes, but not in post-sleep deprivation effects of time on task and response-stimulus interval. Citation: Oonk M, Davis CJ, Krueger JM, Wisor JP, Van Dongen HPA. Sleep deprivation and time-on-task performance decrement in the rat psychomotor vigilance task. SLEEP 2015;38(3):445–451. PMID:25515099

  2. The association between media multitasking, task-switching, and dual-task performance.

    PubMed

    Alzahabi, Reem; Becker, Mark W

    2013-10-01

    The recent rise in media use has prompted researchers to investigate its influence on users' basic cognitive processes, such as attention and cognitive control. However, most of these investigations have failed to consider that the rise in media use has been accompanied by an even more dramatic rise in media multitasking (engaging with multiple forms of media simultaneously). Here we investigate how one's ability to switch between 2 tasks and to perform 2 tasks simultaneously is associated with media multitasking experience. Participants saw displays comprised of a number-letter pair and classified the number as odd or even and/or the letter as a consonant or vowel. In task-switching blocks, a cue indicated which classification to perform on each trial. In dual-task blocks, participants performed both classifications. Heavy and light media multitaskers showed comparable performance in the dual-task. Across 2 experiments, heavy media multitaskers were better able to switch between tasks in the task-switching paradigm. Thus, while media multitasking was not associated with increased ability to process 2 tasks in parallel, it was associated with an increased ability to shift between discrete tasks.

  3. The relations of daily task accomplishment satisfaction with changes in affect: a multilevel study in nurses.

    PubMed

    Gabriel, Allison S; Diefendorff, James M; Erickson, Rebecca J

    2011-09-01

    Focusing on a sample of nurses, this investigation examined the relationships of daily task accomplishment satisfaction (for direct and indirect care tasks) with changes in positive and negative affect from preshift to postshift. Not accomplishing tasks to one's satisfaction was conceptualized as a daily workplace stressor that should increase daily negative affect and decrease daily positive affect from preshift to postshift. Further, because of the greater centrality of direct care nursing tasks to nursing work role identities (relative to indirect care tasks), we expected that task accomplishment satisfaction (or lack thereof) for these tasks would have stronger effects on changes in affect than would task accomplishment satisfaction for indirect care tasks. We also examined 2 person-level resources, collegial nurse-physician relations and psychological resilience, as moderators of the relationships among these daily variables, with the expectation that these resources would buffer the harmful effects of low task accomplishment satisfaction on nurse affect. Results supported almost all of the proposed effects, though the cross-level interactions were observed only for the effects of indirect care task accomplishment satisfaction on affect and not for direct care task accomplishment satisfaction on affect. PMID:21639600

  4. Human performance in a multiple-task environment: effects of automation reliability on visual attention allocation.

    PubMed

    Cullen, Ralph H; Rogers, Wendy A; Fisk, Arthur D

    2013-11-01

    Diagnostic automation has been posited to alleviate the high demands of multiple-task environments; however, mixed effects have been found pertaining to performance aid success. To better understand these effects, attention allocation must be studied directly. We developed a multiple-task environment to study the effects of automation on visual attention. Participants interacted with a system providing varying levels of automation and automation reliability and then were transferred to a system with no support. Attention allocation was measured by tracking the number of times each task was viewed. We found that participants receiving automation allocated their time according to the task frequency and that tasks that benefited most from automation were most harmed when it was removed. The results suggest that the degree to which automation affects multiple-task performance is dependent on the relative attributes of the tasks involved. Moreover, there is an inverse relationship between support and cost when automation fails.

  5. Error framing effects on performance: cognitive, motivational, and affective pathways.

    PubMed

    Steele-Johnson, Debra; Kalinoski, Zachary T

    2014-01-01

    Our purpose was to examine whether positive error framing, that is, making errors salient and cuing individuals to see errors as useful, can benefit learning when task exploration is constrained. Recent research has demonstrated the benefits of a newer approach to training, that is, error management training, that includes the opportunity to actively explore the task and framing errors as beneficial to learning complex tasks (Keith & Frese, 2008). Other research has highlighted the important role of errors in on-the-job learning in complex domains (Hutchins, 1995). Participants (N = 168) from a large undergraduate university performed a class scheduling task. Results provided support for a hypothesized path model in which error framing influenced cognitive, motivational, and affective factors which in turn differentially affected performance quantity and quality. Within this model, error framing had significant direct effects on metacognition and self-efficacy. Our results suggest that positive error framing can have beneficial effects even when tasks cannot be structured to support extensive exploration. Whereas future research can expand our understanding of error framing effects on outcomes, results from the current study suggest that positive error framing can facilitate learning from errors in real-time performance of tasks. PMID:24617273

  6. Performance management in healthcare: performance indicator development, task uncertainty, and types of performance indicators.

    PubMed

    van der Geer, Eric; van Tuijl, Harrie F J M; Rutte, Christel G

    2009-11-01

    In healthcare, performance indicators are increasingly used to measure and control quality and efficiency of care-providing teams. This article demonstrates that when controllability is emphasized during indicator development, the level of task uncertainty influences the type of resulting performance indicators. We report findings from a field study in a medical rehabilitation centre in The Netherlands, where four low task uncertain teams ('hand trauma', 'heart failure', 'amputation', 'chronic pain'), and four high task uncertain teams ('children with developmental coordination disorders (DCD)', 'parkinson's disease', 'young children (0-4 years) with developmental disorders', and 'acquired brain injuries') participated in the development of performance indicators using the Productivity Measurement and Enhancement System (ProMES) method. Results show that teams higher on task uncertainty developed relatively more process indicators compared to outcome indicators, whereas the reverse was true for teams lower on task uncertainty. Additionally, process indicators developed by high task uncertain teams were more of a problem solving nature than process indicators developed by low task uncertain teams, which had a more procedural character. The study expands existing knowledge by providing a framework which explicates the task processes to be executed under different levels of task uncertainty, and in line with that appropriate performance indicators for healthcare teams.

  7. Letter search does not affect semantic priming in a probe naming task.

    PubMed

    Küper, Kristina; Heil, Martin

    2008-11-01

    The normally robust semantic priming effect observed in lexical decision is usually reduced to the point of being absent, when a letter search has to be performed on the prime. It has been argued that semantic activation is thus not an automatic process but rather cognitively controlled and therefore adaptable to task demands. We examined the effects of letter search priming on pronunciation times and found a reliable semantic priming effect, following letter search that was not affected at all relative to a standard condition, where participants silently read the prime. Thus the nature of the prime task did not seem to affect the processing mode employed, semantic access occurred even though attention was focused on surface properties of the prime.

  8. Deep Thinking Increases Task-Set Shielding and Reduces Shifting Flexibility in Dual-Task Performance

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Fischer, Rico; Hommel, Bernhard

    2012-01-01

    Performing two tasks concurrently is difficult, which has been taken to imply the existence of a structural processing bottleneck. Here we sought to assess whether and to what degree one's multitasking abilities depend on the cognitive-control style one engages in. Participants were primed with creativity tasks that either called for divergent…

  9. Short-term memory and dual task performance

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Regan, J. E.

    1982-01-01

    Two hypotheses concerning the way in which short-term memory interacts with another task in a dual task situation are considered. It is noted that when two tasks are combined, the activity of controlling and organizing performance on both tasks simultaneously may compete with either task for a resource; this resource may be space in a central mechanism or general processing capacity or it may be some task-specific resource. If a special relationship exists between short-term memory and control, especially if there is an identity relationship between short-term and a central controlling mechanism, then short-term memory performance should show a decrement in a dual task situation. Even if short-term memory does not have any particular identity with a controlling mechanism, but both tasks draw on some common resource or resources, then a tradeoff between the two tasks in allocating resources is possible and could be reflected in performance. The persistent concurrence cost in memory performance in these experiments suggests that short-term memory may have a unique status in the information processing system.

  10. Performance pressure and caffeine both affect cognitive performance, but likely through independent mechanisms.

    PubMed

    Boere, Julia J; Fellinger, Lizz; Huizinga, Duncan J H; Wong, Sebastiaan F; Bijleveld, Erik

    2016-02-01

    A prevalent combination in daily life, performance pressure and caffeine intake have both been shown to impact people's cognitive performance. Here, we examined the possibility that pressure and caffeine affect cognitive performance via a shared pathway. In an experiment, participants performed a modular arithmetic task. Performance pressure and caffeine intake were orthogonally manipulated. Findings indicated that pressure and caffeine both negatively impacted performance. However, (a) pressure vs. caffeine affected performance on different trial types, and (b) there was no hint of an interactive effect. So, though the evidence is indirect, findings suggest that pressure and caffeine shape performance via distinct mechanisms, rather than a shared one.

  11. Comparing species decisions in a dichotomous choice task: adjusting task parameters improves performance in monkeys.

    PubMed

    Prétôt, Laurent; Bshary, Redouan; Brosnan, Sarah F

    2016-07-01

    In comparative psychology, both similarities and differences among species are studied to better understand the evolution of their behavior. To do so, we first test species in tasks using similar procedures, but if differences are found, it is important to determine their underlying cause(s) (e.g., are they due to ecology, cognitive ability, an artifact of the study, and/or some other factor?). In our previous work, primates performed unexpectedly poorly on an apparently simple two-choice discrimination task based on the natural behavior of cleaner fish, while the fish did quite well. In this task, if the subjects first chose one of the options (ephemeral) they received both food items, but if they chose the other (permanent) option first, the ephemeral option disappeared. Here, we test several proposed explanations for primates' relatively poorer performance. In Study 1, we used a computerized paradigm that differed from the previous test by removing interaction with human experimenters, which may be distracting, and providing a more standardized testing environment. In Study 2, we adapted the computerized paradigm from Study 1 to be more relevant to primate ecology. Monkeys' overall performance in these adapted tasks matched the performance of the fish in the original study, showing that with the appropriate modifications they can solve the task. We discuss these results in light of comparative research, which requires balancing procedural similarity with considerations of how the details of the task or the context may influence how different species perceive and solve tasks differently. PMID:27086302

  12. Viewer Perspective Affects Central Bottleneck Requirements in Spatial Translation Tasks

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Franz, Elizabeth A.; Sebastian, Alexandra; Hust, Christina; Norris, Tom

    2008-01-01

    A psychological refractory period (PRP) approach and the locus of slack logic were applied to examine the novel question of whether spatial translation processes can begin before the central bottleneck when effector or noneffector stimuli are processed from an egocentric (viewer-centered) perspective. In single tasks, trials requiring spatial…

  13. Interference effects of vocalization on dual task performance

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Owens, J. M.; Goodman, L. S.; Pianka, M. J.

    1984-09-01

    Voice command and control systems have been proposed as a potential means of off-loading the typically overburdened visual information processing system. However, prior to introducing novel human-machine interfacing technologies in high workload environments, consideration must be given to the integration of the new technologists within existing task structures to ensure that no new sources of workload or interference are systematically introduced. This study examined the use of voice interactive systems technology in the joint performance of two cognitive information processing tasks requiring continuous memory and choice reaction wherein a basis for intertask interference might be expected. Stimuli for the continuous memory task were presented aurally and either voice or keyboard responding was required in the choice reaction task. Performance was significantly degraded in each task when voice responding was required in the choice reaction time task. Performance degradation was evident in higher error scores for both the choice reaction and continuous memory tasks. Performance decrements observed under conditions of high intertask stimulus similarity were not statistically significant. The results signal the need to consider further the task requirements for verbal short-term memory when applying speech technology in multitask environments.

  14. The Factor Structure of Test Task Characteristics and Examinee Performance

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Carr, Nathan T.

    2006-01-01

    The present study focuses on the task characteristics of reading passages and key sentences in a test of second language reading. Using a new methodological approach to describe variation in test task characteristics and explore how differences in these characteristics might relate to examinee performance, it posed the two following research…

  15. Modeling Cognitive Strategies during Complex Task Performing Process

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Mazman, Sacide Guzin; Altun, Arif

    2012-01-01

    The purpose of this study is to examine individuals' computer based complex task performing processes and strategies in order to determine the reasons of failure by cognitive task analysis method and cued retrospective think aloud with eye movement data. Study group was five senior students from Computer Education and Instructional Technologies…

  16. Performance in Dual Tasks. Final Report.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Hunt, Earl; Lansman, Marcy

    This project was designed to construct a single theoretical framework for the analysis of problem solving and real time "attention and performance" behavior. The model was developed as a computer program. It was designed in a similar manner to that of various problem solving simulations that use the "production system" approach. The program has…

  17. Task-focused behavior mediates the associations between supportive interpersonal environments and students' academic performance.

    PubMed

    Kiuru, Noona; Pakarinen, Eija; Vasalampi, Kati; Silinskas, Gintautas; Aunola, Kaisa; Poikkeus, Anna-Maija; Metsäpelto, Riitta-Leena; Lerkkanen, Marja-Kristiina; Nurmi, Jari-Erik

    2014-04-01

    In the longitudinal study presented here, we tested the theoretical assumption that children's task-focused behavior in learning situations mediates the associations between supportive interpersonal environments and academic performance. The sample consisted of 2,137 Finnish-speaking children. Data on supportive interpersonal environments (characterized by authoritative parenting, positive teacher affect toward the child, and peer acceptance) were gathered in Grade 1. The children's task-focused behavior was measured in Grades 2 and 3, and academic performance was measured in Grades 1 and 4. The results supported our assumption by showing that all three supportive environments were positively associated with children's subsequent academic performance via increased task-focused behavior in learning situations. These findings suggest that students' academic performance can be promoted by increasing the support they receive from peers, parents, and teachers because such increased support leads to better task focus in learning tasks. PMID:24532054

  18. Organizational citizenship behavior and performance evaluations: exploring the impact of task interdependence.

    PubMed

    Bachrach, Daniel G; Powell, Benjamin C; Bendoly, Elliot; Richey, R Glenn

    2006-01-01

    The influence of task interdependence on the importance attributed to organizational citizenship behavior (OCB) in evaluations of employee performance was investigated in 3 studies. In Study 1,238 undergraduates were exposed to a task interdependence manipulation and a unit-level performance manipulation and provided citizenship ratings. In Study 2,148 master of business administration students were exposed to a task interdependence manipulation and then rated the importance of OCB in their evaluations of employee performance. In Study 3,130 managers rated the task interdependence in their unit of principal responsibility and the importance of OCB in their overall evaluations of employee performance. The results suggest task interdependence may affect the importance attributed to OCB by evaluators. Implications of these results are explored.

  19. Computer task performance by subjects with Duchenne muscular dystrophy

    PubMed Central

    Malheiros, Silvia Regina Pinheiro; da Silva, Talita Dias; Favero, Francis Meire; de Abreu, Luiz Carlos; Fregni, Felipe; Ribeiro, Denise Cardoso; de Mello Monteiro, Carlos Bandeira

    2016-01-01

    Aims Two specific objectives were established to quantify computer task performance among people with Duchenne muscular dystrophy (DMD). First, we compared simple computational task performance between subjects with DMD and age-matched typically developing (TD) subjects. Second, we examined correlations between the ability of subjects with DMD to learn the computational task and their motor functionality, age, and initial task performance. Method The study included 84 individuals (42 with DMD, mean age of 18±5.5 years, and 42 age-matched controls). They executed a computer maze task; all participants performed the acquisition (20 attempts) and retention (five attempts) phases, repeating the same maze. A different maze was used to verify transfer performance (five attempts). The Motor Function Measure Scale was applied, and the results were compared with maze task performance. Results In the acquisition phase, a significant decrease was found in movement time (MT) between the first and last acquisition block, but only for the DMD group. For the DMD group, MT during transfer was shorter than during the first acquisition block, indicating improvement from the first acquisition block to transfer. In addition, the TD group showed shorter MT than the DMD group across the study. Conclusion DMD participants improved their performance after practicing a computational task; however, the difference in MT was present in all attempts among DMD and control subjects. Computational task improvement was positively influenced by the initial performance of individuals with DMD. In turn, the initial performance was influenced by their distal functionality but not their age or overall functionality. PMID:26766911

  20. Circadian Effects on Simple Components of Complex Task Performance

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Clegg, Benjamin A.; Wickens, Christopher D.; Vieane, Alex Z.; Gutzwiller, Robert S.; Sebok, Angelia L.

    2015-01-01

    The goal of this study was to advance understanding and prediction of the impact of circadian rhythm on aspects of complex task performance during unexpected automation failures, and subsequent fault management. Participants trained on two tasks: a process control simulation, featuring automated support; and a multi-tasking platform. Participants then completed one task in a very early morning (circadian night) session, and the other during a late afternoon (circadian day) session. Small effects of time of day were seen on simple components of task performance, but impacts on more demanding components, such as those that occur following an automation failure, were muted relative to previous studies where circadian rhythm was compounded with sleep deprivation and fatigue. Circadian low participants engaged in compensatory strategies, rather than passively monitoring the automation. The findings and implications are discussed in the context of a model that includes the effects of sleep and fatigue factors.

  1. Cognitive correlates of hemispheric performance on dichotic tasks.

    PubMed

    Johnson, R C; Green, P; Ahern, F M; Cole, R E

    Older (age 50+) adults were tested twice on three measures of dichotic memory and once on three measures of cognition. Internal consistencies of all three measures generally were adequate. However, test-retest reliabilities, by ear of presentation, were comparatively low for the three dichotic measures. A measure of vocabulary (a left hemisphere dominant cognitive ability) was related to performance on most dichotic tasks. Years of education (an index of left hemisphere mediated crystallized intelligence) was related to performance on left but not right hemisphere function on two of three dichotic tasks. Performance on tests of spatial ability was related to performance on left ear/right hemisphere but not right ear/left hemisphere function on two of three dichotic memory tasks. Individual differences in accuracy of recall and recognition of stimuli presented via dichotic tasks to the right ear/left hemisphere and the left ear/right hemisphere appear to have different cognitive correlates. Right hemisphere performance on dichotic tasks generally shows a significant negative association with age, as did performance on right hemisphere dominant cognitive tasks. On the other hand, most measures of left hemisphere performance showed no decline associated with age.

  2. Sleep Restriction during Simulated Wildfire Suppression: Effect on Physical Task Performance

    PubMed Central

    Vincent, Grace; Ferguson, Sally A.; Tran, Jacqueline; Larsen, Brianna; Wolkow, Alexander; Aisbett, Brad

    2015-01-01

    Objectives To examine the effects of sleep restriction on firefighters’ physical task performance during simulated wildfire suppression. Methods Thirty-five firefighters were matched and randomly allocated to either a control condition (8-hour sleep opportunity, n = 18) or a sleep restricted condition (4-hour sleep opportunity, n = 17). Performance on physical work tasks was evaluated across three days. In addition, heart rate, core temperature, and worker activity were measured continuously. Rate of perceived and exertion and effort sensation were evaluated during the physical work periods. Results There were no differences between the sleep-restricted and control groups in firefighters’ task performance, heart rate, core temperature, or perceptual responses during self-paced simulated firefighting work tasks. However, the sleep-restricted group were less active during periods of non-physical work compared to the control group. Conclusions Under self-paced work conditions, 4 h of sleep restriction did not adversely affect firefighters’ performance on physical work tasks. However, the sleep-restricted group were less physically active throughout the simulation. This may indicate that sleep-restricted participants adapted their behaviour to conserve effort during rest periods, to subsequently ensure they were able to maintain performance during the firefighter work tasks. This work contributes new knowledge to inform fire agencies of firefighters’ operational capabilities when their sleep is restricted during multi-day wildfire events. The work also highlights the need for further research to explore how sleep restriction affects physical performance during tasks of varying duration, intensity, and complexity. PMID:25615988

  3. Task Switching versus Cue Switching: Using Transition Cuing to Disentangle Sequential Effects in Task-Switching Performance

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Schneider, Darryl W.; Logan, Gordon D.

    2007-01-01

    Recent methodological advances have allowed researchers to address confounds in the measurement of task-switch costs in task-switching performance by dissociating cue switching from task switching. For example, in the transition-cuing procedure, which involves presenting cues for task transitions rather than for tasks, cue transitions (cue…

  4. Habitual routines in task-performing groups

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Gersick, C. J.; Hackman, J. R.

    1990-01-01

    Groups, like individuals, often develop habitual routines for dealing with frequently encountered stimuli. Although such routines are consequential for group life and work, little is known about them. This paper reconnoiters the territory of habitual behavior in groups that perform work within organizations. We offer a definition of group habits, identify their functions and dysfunctions, suggest how they develop and are maintained, and identify the circumstances when they are likely to be altered or abandoned. Throughout, we give special attention to the social nature of habitual routines in groups, to the interaction between habitual behavior and group life cycle phenomena, and to the role of the organizational context in prompting, shaping, and terminating habitual routines.

  5. The effect of horizontal versus vertical task presentation on children's performance in coordinate tasks.

    PubMed

    Worsfold, Naomi; Davis, Alyson; De Bruyn, Bart

    2008-01-01

    Empirical work on children's ability to understand spatial coordinates has focused on the factors that increase children's proficiency. When interpreting performance, it should be considered that presenting a coordinate task on a horizontal surface might constrain the responses that children make because some target positions are further away from the child than others. Vertical task presentation removes this constraint. Children aged 3 to 9 years were presented with an interpretative coordinate task administered on a touchscreen, presented in an egocentric-vertical position or egocentric-horizontal position. The results show that for 5- to 7-year-old children vertical presentation led to far more correct responses than horizontal presentation. Analysis of the children's errors suggests that this may be due to the fact that vertical presentation suppresses children's bias towards responding in relation to one rather than both coordinates. Taken together these findings contribute to understanding why children's performance in xy coordination tasks is highly contextually sensitive.

  6. Accommodation in Astigmatic Children During Visual Task Performance

    PubMed Central

    Harvey, Erin M.; Miller, Joseph M.; Apple, Howard P.; Parashar, Pavan; Twelker, J. Daniel; Crescioni, Mabel; Davis, Amy L.; Leonard-Green, Tina K.; Campus, Irene; Sherrill, Duane L.

    2014-01-01

    Purpose. To determine the accuracy and stability of accommodation in uncorrected children during visual task performance. Methods. Subjects were second- to seventh-grade children from a highly astigmatic population. Measurements of noncycloplegic right eye spherical equivalent (Mnc) were obtained while uncorrected subjects performed three visual tasks at near (40 cm) and distance (2 m). Tasks included reading sentences with stimulus letter size near acuity threshold and an age-appropriate letter size (high task demands) and viewing a video (low task demand). Repeated measures ANOVA assessed the influence of astigmatism, task demand, and accommodative demand on accuracy (mean Mnc) and variability (mean SD of Mnc) of accommodation. Results. For near and distance analyses, respectively, sample size was 321 and 247, mean age was 10.37 (SD 1.77) and 10.30 (SD 1.74) years, mean cycloplegic M was 0.48 (SD 1.10) and 0.79 diopters (D) (SD 1.00), and mean astigmatism was 0.99 (SD 1.15) and 0.75 D (SD 0.96). Poor accommodative accuracy was associated with high astigmatism, low task demand (video viewing), and high accommodative demand. The negative effect of accommodative demand on accuracy increased with increasing astigmatism, with the poorest accommodative accuracy observed in high astigmats (≥3.00 D) with high accommodative demand/high hyperopia (1.53 D and 2.05 D of underaccommodation for near and distant stimuli, respectively). Accommodative variability was greatest in high astigmats and was uniformly high across task condition. No/low and moderate astigmats showed higher variability for the video task than the reading tasks. Conclusions. Accuracy of accommodation is reduced in uncorrected children with high astigmatism and high accommodative demand/high hyperopia, but improves with increased visual task demand (reading). High astigmats showed the greatest variability in accommodation. PMID:25103265

  7. Task Performance with List-Mode Data

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Caucci, Luca

    This dissertation investigates the application of list-mode data to detection, estimation, and image reconstruction problems, with an emphasis on emission tomography in medical imaging. We begin by introducing a theoretical framework for list-mode data and we use it to define two observers that operate on list-mode data. These observers are applied to the problem of detecting a signal (known in shape and location) buried in a random lumpy background. We then consider maximum-likelihood methods for the estimation of numerical parameters from list-mode data, and we characterize the performance of these estimators via the so-called Fisher information matrix. Reconstruction from PET list-mode data is then considered. In a process we called "double maximum-likelihood" reconstruction, we consider a simple PET imaging system and we use maximum-likelihood methods to first estimate a parameter vector for each pair of gamma-ray photons that is detected by the hardware. The collection of these parameter vectors forms a list, which is then fed to another maximum-likelihood algorithm for volumetric reconstruction over a grid of voxels. Efficient parallel implementation of the algorithms discussed above is then presented. In this work, we take advantage of two low-cost, mass-produced computing platforms that have recently appeared on the market, and we provide some details on implementing our algorithms on these devices. We conclude this dissertation work by elaborating on a possible application of list-mode data to X-ray digital mammography. We argue that today's CMOS detectors and computing platforms have become fast enough to make X-ray digital mammography list-mode data acquisition and processing feasible.

  8. Effects of Self-Esteem and Perceived Goal Difficulty on Goal Setting, Certainty, Task Performance, and Attributions.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Tang, Thomas Li-Ping; Reynolds, David B.

    1993-01-01

    Fifty-two subjects competed on a task against themselves, a difficult competitor, and an easy competitor. Certainty, ability attribution, and task satisfaction for those with low self-esteem were affected by perceived goal difficulty but not for those with high self-esteem. Low self-esteem groups had lower goals, certainty, and task performance.…

  9. How does self-efficacy affect performance of learner?

    PubMed

    Vakani, Farhan; Sheerani, Mughis; Afzal, Azam; Amin, Almas

    2012-01-01

    All types of attribution based on which learners make their judgement (i.e., self efficacy), about academic success or failure or about a specific task usually affect their performance and their capabilities to deal with different realities. It is perhaps the most distinctive capability of self-reflection. Many of the cognitive theorists have defined it as a meta-cognitive capability. This judgement influence learners choose what to do, how much effort to be invested in the activity, how long to carry the phase of disappointment, and whether to approach the task anxiously or with assurance.

  10. An opportunity cost model of subjective effort and task performance

    PubMed Central

    Kurzban, Robert; Duckworth, Angela; Kable, Joseph W.; Myers, Justus

    2013-01-01

    Why does performing certain tasks cause the aversive experience of mental effort and concomitant deterioration in task performance? One explanation posits a physical resource that is depleted over time. We propose an alternate explanation that centers on mental representations of the costs and benefits associated with task performance. Specifically, certain computational mechanisms, especially those associated with executive function, can be deployed for only a limited number of simultaneous tasks at any given moment. Consequently, the deployment of these computational mechanisms carries an opportunity cost – that is, the next-best use to which these systems might be put. We argue that the phenomenology of effort can be understood as the felt output of these cost/benefit computations. In turn, the subjective experience of effort motivates reduced deployment of these computational mechanisms in the service of the present task. These opportunity cost representations, then, together with other cost/benefit calculations, determine effort expended and, everything else equal, result in performance reductions. In making our case for this position, we review alternate explanations both for the phenomenology of effort associated with these tasks and for performance reductions over time. Likewise, we review the broad range of relevant empirical results from across subdisciplines, especially psychology and neuroscience. We hope that our proposal will help to build links among the diverse fields that have been addressing similar questions from different perspectives, and we emphasize ways in which alternate models might be empirically distinguished. PMID:24304775

  11. How Coriolis meter design affects field performance

    SciTech Connect

    Levien, A.; Dudiak, A.

    1995-12-31

    Although many possibilities exist for the design of Coriolis flowmeters, a common set of fundamental physical principles affect practical meter design. Design criteria such as tube geometry, alloy section, operating frequencies, stress levels, and tubing wall thickness have varying impacts on meter performance. Additionally, field conditions such as changing temperature, pressure, pipeline stress and vibration affect measurement performance. The challenge created in Coriolis flow meter design is to maximize the sensitivity of the meter Coriolis forces, while minimizing the impact of outside environmental influences. Data are presented on the physical principles that affect Coriolis flowmeters, and how the various aspects of meter design influence field performance.

  12. Effects of a standing and three dynamic workstations on computer task performance and cognitive function tests.

    PubMed

    Commissaris, Dianne A C M; Könemann, Reinier; Hiemstra-van Mastrigt, Suzanne; Burford, Eva-Maria; Botter, Juliane; Douwes, Marjolein; Ellegast, Rolf P

    2014-11-01

    Sedentary work entails health risks. Dynamic (or active) workstations, at which computer tasks can be combined with physical activity, may reduce the risks of sedentary behaviour. The aim of this study was to evaluate short term task performance while working on three dynamic workstations: a treadmill, an elliptical trainer, a bicycle ergometer and a conventional standing workstation. A standard sitting workstation served as control condition. Fifteen Dutch adults performed five standardised but common office tasks in an office-like laboratory setting. Both objective and perceived work performance were measured. With the exception of high precision mouse tasks, short term work performance was not affected by working on a dynamic or a standing workstation. The participant's perception of decreased performance might complicate the acceptance of dynamic workstations, although most participants indicate that they would use a dynamic workstation if available at the workplace.

  13. Studying Orientations and Performance on Verbal Fluency Tasks in a Second Language

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Andreou, Eleni; Andreou, Georgia; Vlachos, Filippos

    2005-01-01

    Previous research has shown that studying orientations are important factors in determining academic performance. The main purpose of this study was to investigate how Greek students' approaches to studying in combination with gender, academic discipline, and professional degree in English affect performance on verbal fluency tasks in English as a…

  14. Psychological and physiological correlates of stress: Performance on a cooperative task

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Roessler, R.; Lester, J.; Knapp, T.

    1976-01-01

    The relationship of personality dimensions to performance was investigated. The personality measure used to select subjects, the Barratt impulsiveness scale, is hypothesized to be related to a style of behavior which should affect the trend of choices which various subjects will make. Personality dimensions were specifically examined during performance of a cooperative task, the Prisoner's Dilemma.

  15. The Effects of Verbal Reinforcement, Interest, and "Usable Performance Feedback" upon Task Performance.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Fish, Marian C.; White, Mary Alice

    1978-01-01

    The influence of student task interest and of usable performance feedback on the effectiveness of verbal reinforcement was investigated in fifth graders who received approval, disapproval, or neutral reinforcement. Neither reinforcement nor reinforcement-task variable interaction provided enough motivation to improve accuracy of task performance.…

  16. Influence of gender on psychomotor vigilance task performance by adolescents.

    PubMed

    Beijamini, F; Silva, A G T; Peixoto, C A T; Louzada, F M

    2008-08-01

    During adolescence, the sleep phase delay associated with early school times increases daytime sleepiness and reduces psychomotor performance. Some studies have shown an effect of gender on psychomotor performance in adults and children. Males present faster reaction times (RT) compared with females. The aim of the present study was to evaluate the influence of gender on Palm psychomotor vigilance task (PVT) performance in adolescents. Thirty-four adolescents (19 girls, 13 to 16 years old) attending morning school classes of a public school in Curitiba, PR, Brazil, participated in the study. Sleep patterns were measured using actigraphy and sleepiness data were accessed with the Karolinska Sleepiness Scale (KSS). KSS and PVT measurements were collected at two times in the morning (8:00 and 11:00 h). The data were compared using one-way ANOVA, considering gender as a factor. ANOVA indicated that gender did not affect sleep patterns and subjective somnolence; however, a statistically significant effect of gender was detected for PVT performance. Boys presented faster RT (RT-PVT1: 345.51 ms, F = 6.08, P < 0.05; RT-PVT2: 343.30 ms, F = 6.35, P < 0.05) and fewer lapses (lapses-PVT1: 8.71, F = 4.45, P < 0.05; lapses-PVT2: 7.82, F = 7.06, P < 0.05) compared with girls (RT-PVT1: 402.96; RT-PVT2: 415.70; lapses-PVT1: 16.33; lapses-PVT2: 17.80). These results showed that this effect of gender, already reported in adults and children, is also observed in adolescents. The influence of gender should be taken into account in studies that use Palm PVT to evaluate psychomotor performance in this age range. PMID:18797710

  17. Influence of gender on psychomotor vigilance task performance by adolescents.

    PubMed

    Beijamini, F; Silva, A G T; Peixoto, C A T; Louzada, F M

    2008-08-01

    During adolescence, the sleep phase delay associated with early school times increases daytime sleepiness and reduces psychomotor performance. Some studies have shown an effect of gender on psychomotor performance in adults and children. Males present faster reaction times (RT) compared with females. The aim of the present study was to evaluate the influence of gender on Palm psychomotor vigilance task (PVT) performance in adolescents. Thirty-four adolescents (19 girls, 13 to 16 years old) attending morning school classes of a public school in Curitiba, PR, Brazil, participated in the study. Sleep patterns were measured using actigraphy and sleepiness data were accessed with the Karolinska Sleepiness Scale (KSS). KSS and PVT measurements were collected at two times in the morning (8:00 and 11:00 h). The data were compared using one-way ANOVA, considering gender as a factor. ANOVA indicated that gender did not affect sleep patterns and subjective somnolence; however, a statistically significant effect of gender was detected for PVT performance. Boys presented faster RT (RT-PVT1: 345.51 ms, F = 6.08, P < 0.05; RT-PVT2: 343.30 ms, F = 6.35, P < 0.05) and fewer lapses (lapses-PVT1: 8.71, F = 4.45, P < 0.05; lapses-PVT2: 7.82, F = 7.06, P < 0.05) compared with girls (RT-PVT1: 402.96; RT-PVT2: 415.70; lapses-PVT1: 16.33; lapses-PVT2: 17.80). These results showed that this effect of gender, already reported in adults and children, is also observed in adolescents. The influence of gender should be taken into account in studies that use Palm PVT to evaluate psychomotor performance in this age range.

  18. Vestibular disorders and dual task performance: Impairment when walking a straight path

    PubMed Central

    Roberts, Jess C.; Cohen, Helen S.; Sangi-Haghpeykar, Haleh

    2013-01-01

    Locomotion is impaired in some people with vestibular disorders. Performance on cognitive tasks is also impaired in many people with vestibular disorders. The goal of this study was to determine if patients with vestibular disorders have decreased ability to complete a dual task performance involving a cognitive task, an additional motor task or both tasks, combined along a linear path. Subjects were normal, had benign paroxysmal positional vertigo, or had various vestibular disorders that caused unilateral weakness. They were asked to walk 7.62 m in a straight line with eyes open or closed, without extra tasks, and while nodding the head, naming things, and both nodding and naming. The patients walked significantly slower than controls, especially when performing the cognitive task. Patients had greater ataxia and began veering sooner than normals. The subjects’ veering increased significantly with the addition of cognitive tasks. The patient groups did not differ significantly from each other. The changes in velocity did not affect the veering. These data suggest that patients with vestibular disorders are impaired in their ability to complete a linear path when cognitive tasks are added. PMID:21558642

  19. Glaucoma and Disability: Which tasks are affected, and at what stage of disease?

    PubMed Central

    Ramulu, Pradeep

    2009-01-01

    Purpose of Review To summarize recent work from clinical and epidemiological studies which describe how, and at what stage, glaucoma affects the performance of important vision-related activities. Recent Findings Difficulties with the extremes of lighting are the most frequent complaint in glaucoma. Individuals with bilateral glaucoma also self-report difficulty with a broad array of tasks including reading, walking, and driving. Bilateral glaucoma is associated with driving cessation and limitation, bumping into objects, slower walking, and falls. Some, but not all, studies also demonstrate higher accident rates in glaucoma. Measurable effects on reading speed have only been observed with field damage severe enough to affect binocular central acuity. Summary Glaucoma with bilateral visual field loss is associated with increased symptoms and a measurable decline in mobility and driving. Further work is necessary to establish whether unilateral glaucoma has a significant impact on patients, to determine whether reading difficulty is common in subjects with bilateral glaucoma, and to establish the effects of lighting conditions on task performance in glaucoma. PMID:19240541

  20. Dual-task performance under acute stress in female adolescents with borderline personality disorder.

    PubMed

    Kaess, Michael; Parzer, Peter; Koenig, Julian; Resch, Franz; Brunner, Romuald

    2016-09-01

    Research to elucidate early alterations of higher cognitive processes in adolescents with BPD is rare. This study investigated differences in dual-task performance in adolescents with BPD during stress and non-stress conditions. The study sample comprised 30 female adolescents with BPD and 34 healthy controls. The impact of stress on dual-task performance was measured using a standardized stressor. Self-reports of distress and measures of heart rate (HR) were obtained to measure stress reactivity. There were no group differences in task performance. Under stress conditions, the performance on the auditory task decreased in both groups but without significant group differences. Healthy controls showed an increase of mean HR after stress induction compared to no change in the BPD group. The finding of attenuated HR response to acute stress in adolescent patients with BPD may contradict current theories that the affective hyperresponsivity in BPD is based on a biologically determined mechanism. PMID:26852226

  1. High definition television: Evaluation for remote task performance

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Draper, J. V.; Handel, S. J.; Herndon, J. N.

    High definition television (HDTV) transmits a video image with more than twice the number of horizontal scan lines that standard resolution television provides (1125 for HDTV to 525 for standard resolution television), with impressive picture quality improvement. These experimental activities are part of a joint collaboration between the U.S. Department of Energy (USDOE) and the Power Reactor and Nuclear Fuel Development Corporation (PNC) of Japan in the field of the Nuclear Fuel Cycle: Reprocessing Technology. Objects in the HDTV picture have more sharply defined edges, better contrast, and more accurate shading and color pattern reproduction. Because television is a key component for teleoperator performance, picture quality improvement could improve speed and accuracy. This paper describes three experiments which evaluated the impact of HDTV on remote task performance. HDTV was compared to standard resolution, monochromatic television and standard resolution, stereoscopic, monochromatic television. Tasks included judgement of depth in a televised scene, visual inspection, and a remote maintenance task. The experiments show that HDTV can improve performance. HDTV is superior to monoscopic, monochromatic, standard resolution television and to stereoscopic television for remote inspection tasks; it is less proficient than stereo television for distance matching. HDTV leads to lower error rate during tasks but does not reduce time required to complete tasks.

  2. Task Level Job Performance Criteria Development. Final Report.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Wiley, Llewellyn N.; Hahn, Clifford P.

    This study investigated possibilities for improving identification of job performance requirements by examining job incumbent's performance on separate tasks. Three specialties were studied: 291X0, Telecommunications Operation Specialist; 304X4, Group Radio Communications Equipment Repairman; and 431X1C, Aircraft Maintenance Specialist.…

  3. Learning Styles and Performance in Second Language Tasks

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Andreou, Eleni; Andreou, Georgia; Vlachos, Filippos

    2008-01-01

    Given the paucity of research that has examined associations between learning styles and chosen academic discipline in connection with performance on different second language (L2) verbal fluency tasks, the authors undertook the current study with the aim of investigating the relationship between Greek students' learning styles and performance on…

  4. Competitive Game Play Attenuates Self-Other Integration during Joint Task Performance

    PubMed Central

    Ruissen, Margit I.; de Bruijn, Ellen R. A.

    2016-01-01

    Joint task performance is facilitated by sharing and integrating each other’s action representations. Research has shown that the amount of this so-called self-other integration depends on situational aspects related to the social context, including differences in the social relationship between co-acting individuals. There are indications that a cooperative relationship facilitates self-other integration while a competitive relationship results in more individualistic task performance. However, findings from previous studies in which the cooperative or competitive element was manipulated during task performance are inconsistent. Therefore, the present study aimed to manipulate the social relationship between two individuals prior to performing a social Simon task. This task is frequently used to measure self-other integration and distinction processes. A mixed-within-and-between-subjects design was used in which three groups of participants performed both a standard Simon task and a social Simon task after having played a Tetris game either individually, in cooperation with a co-actor, or in competition against another participant. Performance on the standard Simon task was not affected by the Tetris manipulation. However, a sustained effect of the induced cooperative versus competitive relationship was found on the social Simon Task. Less self-other integration was found in participants who had first played a competitive Tetris game compared to participants who had played a cooperative or solo version of the game. The current study thus demonstrates that an established cooperative or competitive relationship is sufficient to modulate the degree of self-other integration on subsequent joint task performance. Importantly, by using Tetris, attention to others’ actions was beneficial both during cooperative and competitive game play and can thus not explain the competition-induced reduction of self-other integration. PMID:26973571

  5. Competitive Game Play Attenuates Self-Other Integration during Joint Task Performance.

    PubMed

    Ruissen, Margit I; de Bruijn, Ellen R A

    2016-01-01

    Joint task performance is facilitated by sharing and integrating each other's action representations. Research has shown that the amount of this so-called self-other integration depends on situational aspects related to the social context, including differences in the social relationship between co-acting individuals. There are indications that a cooperative relationship facilitates self-other integration while a competitive relationship results in more individualistic task performance. However, findings from previous studies in which the cooperative or competitive element was manipulated during task performance are inconsistent. Therefore, the present study aimed to manipulate the social relationship between two individuals prior to performing a social Simon task. This task is frequently used to measure self-other integration and distinction processes. A mixed-within-and-between-subjects design was used in which three groups of participants performed both a standard Simon task and a social Simon task after having played a Tetris game either individually, in cooperation with a co-actor, or in competition against another participant. Performance on the standard Simon task was not affected by the Tetris manipulation. However, a sustained effect of the induced cooperative versus competitive relationship was found on the social Simon Task. Less self-other integration was found in participants who had first played a competitive Tetris game compared to participants who had played a cooperative or solo version of the game. The current study thus demonstrates that an established cooperative or competitive relationship is sufficient to modulate the degree of self-other integration on subsequent joint task performance. Importantly, by using Tetris, attention to others' actions was beneficial both during cooperative and competitive game play and can thus not explain the competition-induced reduction of self-other integration. PMID:26973571

  6. Neuronal Substrates Underlying Performance Variability in Well-Trained Skillful Motor Task in Humans.

    PubMed

    Mizuguchi, Nobuaki; Uehara, Shintaro; Hirose, Satoshi; Yamamoto, Shinji; Naito, Eiichi

    2016-01-01

    Motor performance fluctuates trial by trial even in a well-trained motor skill. Here we show neural substrates underlying such behavioral fluctuation in humans. We first scanned brain activity with functional magnetic resonance imaging while healthy participants repeatedly performed a 10 s skillful sequential finger-tapping task. Before starting the experiment, the participants had completed intensive training. We evaluated task performance per trial (number of correct sequences in 10 s) and depicted brain regions where the activity changes in association with the fluctuation of the task performance across trials. We found that the activity in a broader range of frontoparietocerebellar network, including the bilateral dorsolateral prefrontal cortex (DLPFC), anterior cingulate and anterior insular cortices, and left cerebellar hemisphere, was negatively correlated with the task performance. We further showed in another transcranial direct current stimulation (tDCS) experiment that task performance deteriorated, when we applied anodal tDCS to the right DLPFC. These results indicate that fluctuation of brain activity in the nonmotor frontoparietocerebellar network may underlie trial-by-trial performance variability even in a well-trained motor skill, and its neuromodulation with tDCS may affect the task performance. PMID:27516909

  7. Neuronal Substrates Underlying Performance Variability in Well-Trained Skillful Motor Task in Humans

    PubMed Central

    2016-01-01

    Motor performance fluctuates trial by trial even in a well-trained motor skill. Here we show neural substrates underlying such behavioral fluctuation in humans. We first scanned brain activity with functional magnetic resonance imaging while healthy participants repeatedly performed a 10 s skillful sequential finger-tapping task. Before starting the experiment, the participants had completed intensive training. We evaluated task performance per trial (number of correct sequences in 10 s) and depicted brain regions where the activity changes in association with the fluctuation of the task performance across trials. We found that the activity in a broader range of frontoparietocerebellar network, including the bilateral dorsolateral prefrontal cortex (DLPFC), anterior cingulate and anterior insular cortices, and left cerebellar hemisphere, was negatively correlated with the task performance. We further showed in another transcranial direct current stimulation (tDCS) experiment that task performance deteriorated, when we applied anodal tDCS to the right DLPFC. These results indicate that fluctuation of brain activity in the nonmotor frontoparietocerebellar network may underlie trial-by-trial performance variability even in a well-trained motor skill, and its neuromodulation with tDCS may affect the task performance. PMID:27516909

  8. Development of additional tasks for the executive function performance test.

    PubMed

    Hahn, Bridget; Baum, Carolyn; Moore, Jennifer; Ehrlich-Jones, Linda; Spoeri, Susan; Doherty, Meghan; Wolf, Timothy J

    2014-01-01

    OBJECTIVE. The Executive Function Performance Test (EFPT) is a reliable and valid performance-based assessment of executive function for people with stroke. The objective of this study was to enhance the clinical utility of the EFPT by developing and testing additional tasks for the EFPT in the Alternate EFPT (aEFPT). METHOD. We performed a cross-sectional study with poststroke participants (n = 25) and healthy control participants (n = 25). All participants completed a neuropsychological assessment battery and both the EFPT and the aEFPT. RESULTS. No statistically significant differences were found between the EFPT and the aEFPT when examining total scores, construct scores, and two overall task scores. Correlations between the aEFPT and the neuropsychological measures were adequate to strong (r2s = .59-.83). CONCLUSION. The aEFPT tasks are comparable to the original EFPT tasks, providing occupational therapy practitioners with additional tasks that can be used clinically to identify performance-based executive function deficits in people with stroke. PMID:25397771

  9. Comparing performance in discrete and continuous comparison tasks.

    PubMed

    Leibovich, Tali; Henik, Avishai

    2014-05-01

    The approximate number system (ANS) theory suggests that all magnitudes, discrete (i.e., number of items) or continuous (i.e., size, density, etc.), are processed by a shared system and comply with Weber's law. The current study reexamined this notion by comparing performance in discrete (comparing numerosities of dot arrays) and continuous (comparisons of area of squares) tasks. We found that: (a) threshold of discrimination was higher for continuous than for discrete comparisons; (b) while performance in the discrete task complied with Weber's law, performance in the continuous task violated it; and (c) performance in the discrete task was influenced by continuous properties (e.g., dot density, dot cumulative area) of the dot array that were not predictive of numerosities or task relevant. Therefore, we propose that the magnitude processing system (MPS) is actually divided into separate (yet interactive) systems for discrete and continuous magnitude processing. Further subdivisions are discussed. We argue that cooperation between these systems results in a holistic comparison of magnitudes, one that takes into account continuous properties in addition to numerosities. Considering the MPS as two systems opens the door to new and important questions that shed light on both normal and impaired development of the numerical system.

  10. Human task animation from performance models and natural language input

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Esakov, Jeffrey; Badler, Norman I.; Jung, Moon

    1989-01-01

    Graphical manipulation of human figures is essential for certain types of human factors analyses such as reach, clearance, fit, and view. In many situations, however, the animation of simulated people performing various tasks may be based on more complicated functions involving multiple simultaneous reaches, critical timing, resource availability, and human performance capabilities. One rather effective means for creating such a simulation is through a natural language description of the tasks to be carried out. Given an anthropometrically-sized figure and a geometric workplace environment, various simple actions such as reach, turn, and view can be effectively controlled from language commands or standard NASA checklist procedures. The commands may also be generated by external simulation tools. Task timing is determined from actual performance models, if available, such as strength models or Fitts' Law. The resulting action specification are animated on a Silicon Graphics Iris workstation in real-time.

  11. Effects of force reflection on servomanipulator task performance

    SciTech Connect

    Draper, J.V.; Moore, W.E.; Herndon, J.N.; Weil, B.S.

    1986-01-01

    This paper reports results of a testing program that assessed the impact of force reflection on servomanipulator task performance. The testing program compared three force-reflection levels: 4 to 1 (four units of force on the slave produce one unit of force at the master controller), 1 to 1, and infinity to 1 (no force reflection). Time required to complete tasks, rate of occurrence of errors, the maximum force applied to task components, and variability in forces during completion of representative remote handling tasks were used as dependent variables. Operators exhibited lower error rates, lower peak forces, and more consistent application of forces using force reflection than they did without it. These data support the hypothesis that force reflection provides useful information for servomanipulator operators.

  12. SpaceDock: A Performance Task Platform for Spaceflight Operations

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Marshburn, Thomas H.; Strangman, Gary E.; Strauss, Monica S.; Sutton, Jeffrey P.

    2003-01-01

    Preliminary evidence during both short- and long-duration spaceflight indicates that perceptual-motor coordination changes occur and persist in-flight. However, there is presently no in-flight method for evaluating astronaut performance on mission-critical tasks such as docking. We present a portable platform we have developed for attempting and evaluating docking, and describe the results of a pilot study wherein flight novices learned the docking task. Methods: A dual-joystick, six degrees of freedom platform-called SpaceDock-was developed to enable portable, adaptable performance testing in a spaceflight operations setting. Upon this platform, a simplified docking task was created, involving a constant rate of approach towards a docking target and requiring the user to correct translation in two dimensions and attitude orientation along one dimension (either pitch or roll). Ten flight naive subjects performed the task over a 45 min period and all joystick inputs and timings were collected, from which we could successfully reconstruct travel paths, input profiles and relative target displacements. Results: Subjects exhibited significant improvements in docking over the course of the experiment. Learning to compensate for roll-alterations was robust, whereas compensation for pitch-alterations was not in evidence in this population and relatively short training period. Conclusion: The SpaceDock platform can provide a novel method for training and testing subjects, on a spaceflight-relevant task, and can be used to examine behavioral learning, strategy use, and has been adapted for use in brain imaging experiments.

  13. Performing behavioral tasks in subjects with intracranial electrodes.

    PubMed

    Johnson, Matthew A; Thompson, Susan; Gonzalez-Martinez, Jorge; Park, Hyun-Joo; Bulacio, Juan; Najm, Imad; Kahn, Kevin; Kerr, Matthew; Sarma, Sridevi V; Gale, John T

    2014-01-01

    Patients having stereo-electroencephalography (SEEG) electrode, subdural grid or depth electrode implants have a multitude of electrodes implanted in different areas of their brain for the localization of their seizure focus and eloquent areas. After implantation, the patient must remain in the hospital until the pathological area of brain is found and possibly resected. During this time, these patients offer a unique opportunity to the research community because any number of behavioral paradigms can be performed to uncover the neural correlates that guide behavior. Here we present a method for recording brain activity from intracranial implants as subjects perform a behavioral task designed to assess decision-making and reward encoding. All electrophysiological data from the intracranial electrodes are recorded during the behavioral task, allowing for the examination of the many brain areas involved in a single function at time scales relevant to behavior. Moreover, and unlike animal studies, human patients can learn a wide variety of behavioral tasks quickly, allowing for the ability to perform more than one task in the same subject or for performing controls. Despite the many advantages of this technique for understanding human brain function, there are also methodological limitations that we discuss, including environmental factors, analgesic effects, time constraints and recordings from diseased tissue. This method may be easily implemented by any institution that performs intracranial assessments; providing the opportunity to directly examine human brain function during behavior. PMID:25349952

  14. Erroneous Knowledge of Results Affects Decision and Memory Processes on Timing Tasks

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Ryan, Lawrence J.; Fritz, Matthew S.

    2007-01-01

    On mental timing tasks, erroneous knowledge of results (KR) leads to incorrect performance accompanied by the subjective judgment of accurate performance. Using the start-stop technique (an analogue of the peak interval procedure) with both reproduction and production timing tasks, the authors analyze what processes erroneous KR alters. KR…

  15. Performance under dichoptic versus binocular viewing conditions - Effects of attention and task requirements

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Kimchi, Ruth; Gopher, Daniel; Rubin, Yifat; Raij, David

    1993-01-01

    Three experiments investigated subjects' ability to allocate attention and cope with task requirements under dichoptic versus binocular viewing conditions. Experiments 1 and 2 employed a target detection task in compound and noncompound stimuli, and Experiment 3 employed a relative-proximity judgment task. The tasks were performed in a focused attention condition in which subjects had to attend to the stimulus presented to one eye or field (under dichoptic and binocular viewing conditions, respectively) while ignoring the stimulus presented to the other eye or field, and in a divided attention condition in which subjects had to attend to the stimuli presented to both eyes or fields. Subjects' performance was affected by the interaction of attention conditions with task requirements, but it was generally the same under dichoptic and binocular viewing conditions. The more dependent the task was on finer discrimination, the more performance was impaired by divided attention. These results suggest that at least with discrete tasks and relatively short exposure durations, performance when each eye is presented with a separate stimulus is the same as when the entire field of stimulation is viewed by both eyes.

  16. Changes in Relevance Criteria and Problem Stages in Task Performance.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Vakkari, Pertti; Hakala, Nanna

    2000-01-01

    This study of students at the University of Tampere (Finland) analyzes how changes in relevance criteria are related to changes in problem stages during the task performance process in information retrieval. Provides a conceptual framework, including Kuhlthau's information search process model and prior knowledge; and compares bibliographic…

  17. Career Development, Collective Efficacy, and Individual Task Performance

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Kellett, Janet B.; Humphrey, Ronald H.; Sleeth, Randall G.

    2009-01-01

    Purpose: The purpose of this paper is to test the hypothesis that perceived collective efficacy would mediate the effects of self-efficacy on individual task performance. Design/methodology/approach: An assessment center design with 147 participants in 49 three-person groups was used. Findings: It is found that for individuals working on an…

  18. Music and Spatial Task Performance: A Causal Relationship.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Rauscher, Frances H.; And Others

    This research paper reports on testing the hypothesis that music and spatial task performance are causally related. Two complementary studies are presented that replicate and explore previous findings. One study of college students showed that listening to a Mozart sonata induces subsequent short-term spatial reasoning facilitation and tested the…

  19. Analytic versus Holistic Scoring of Science Performance Tasks.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Klein, Stephen P.; Stecher, Brian M.; Shavelson, Richard J.; McCaffrey, Daniel; Ormseth, Tor; Bell, Robert M.; Comfort, Kathy; Othman, Abdul R.

    1998-01-01

    Two studies involving 368 elementary and high school students and 29 readers were conducted to investigate reader consistency, score reliability, and reader time requirements of three hands-on science performance tasks. Holistic scores were as reliable as analytic scores, and there was a high correlation between them after they were disattenuated…

  20. Computer-Aided Performance Training for Diagnostic and Procedural Tasks.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Rigney, Joseph W.; And Others

    Two computer programs for computer-assisted performance training were developed to give the students the opportunity for concentrated practice of troubleshooting and procedural tasks in naval electronics. In contrast to the usual approach taken in computer-assisted instruction (CAI), these programs simulate essential aspects of devices and tasks…

  1. Performance of Down syndrome subjects during a coincident timing task

    PubMed Central

    2013-01-01

    Background The time synchronization is a very important ability for the acquisition and performance of motor skills that generate the need to adapt the actions of body segments to external events of the environment that are changing their position in space. Down Syndrome (DS) individuals may present some deficits to perform tasks with synchronization demand. We aimed to investigate the performance of individuals with DS in a simple Coincident Timing task. Method 32 individuals were divided into 2 groups: the Down syndrome group (DSG) comprised of 16 individuals with average age of 20 (+/− 5 years old), and a control group (CG) comprised of 16 individuals of the same age. All individuals performed the Simple Timing (ST) task and their performance was measured in milliseconds. The study was conducted in a single phase with the execution of 20 consecutive trials for each participant. Results There was a significant difference in the intergroup analysis for the accuracy adjustment - Absolute Error (Z = 3.656, p = 0.001); and for the performance consistence - Variable Error (Z = 2.939, p = 0.003). Conclusion DS individuals have more difficulty in integrating the motor action to an external stimulus and they also present more inconsistence in performance. Both groups presented the same tendency to delay their motor responses. PMID:23618314

  2. How gender and task difficulty affect a sport-protective response in young adults.

    PubMed

    Lipps, David B; Eckner, James T; Richardson, James K; Ashton-Miller, James A

    2013-01-01

    We tested the hypotheses that gender and task difficulty affect the reaction, movement, and total response times associated with performing a head protective response. Twenty-four healthy young adults (13 females) performed a protective response by raising their hands from waist level to block a foam ball fired at their head from an air cannon. Participants initially stood 8.25 m away from the cannon ('low difficulty'), and were moved successively closer in 60 cm increments until they failed to block at least five of eight balls ('high difficulty'). Limb motion was quantified using optoelectronic markers on the participants' left wrist. Males had significantly faster total response times (P = 0.042), a trend towards faster movement times (P = 0.054), and faster peak wrist velocity (P < 0.001) and acceleration (P = 0.032) than females. Reaction time, movement time, and total response time were significantly faster under high difficulty conditions for both genders (P < 0.001). This study suggests that baseball and softball pitchers and fielders should have sufficient time to protect their head from a batted ball under optimal conditions if they are adequately prepared for the task. PMID:23234296

  3. How gender and task difficulty affect a sport-protective response in young adults

    PubMed Central

    Lipps, David B.; Eckner, James T.; Richardson, James K.; Ashton-Miller, James A.

    2013-01-01

    We tested the hypotheses that gender and task difficulty affect the reaction, movement, and total response times associated with performing a head protective response. Twenty-four healthy young adults (13 females) performed a protective response of raising their hands from waist level to block a foam ball fired at their head from an air cannon. Participants initially stood 8.25 m away from the cannon (‘low difficulty’), and were moved successively closer in 60 cm increments until they failed to block at least 5 of 8 balls (‘high difficulty’). Limb motion was quantified using optoelectronic markers on the participants’ left wrist. Males had significantly faster total response times (p = 0.042), a trend towards faster movement times (p = 0.054), and faster peak wrist velocity (p < .001) and acceleration (p = 0.032) than females. Reaction time, movement time, and total response time were significantly faster under high difficulty conditions for both genders (p < .001). This study suggests that baseball and softball pitchers and fielders should have sufficient time to protect their head from a batted ball under optimal conditions if they are adequately prepared for the task. PMID:23234296

  4. How gender and task difficulty affect a sport-protective response in young adults.

    PubMed

    Lipps, David B; Eckner, James T; Richardson, James K; Ashton-Miller, James A

    2013-01-01

    We tested the hypotheses that gender and task difficulty affect the reaction, movement, and total response times associated with performing a head protective response. Twenty-four healthy young adults (13 females) performed a protective response by raising their hands from waist level to block a foam ball fired at their head from an air cannon. Participants initially stood 8.25 m away from the cannon ('low difficulty'), and were moved successively closer in 60 cm increments until they failed to block at least five of eight balls ('high difficulty'). Limb motion was quantified using optoelectronic markers on the participants' left wrist. Males had significantly faster total response times (P = 0.042), a trend towards faster movement times (P = 0.054), and faster peak wrist velocity (P < 0.001) and acceleration (P = 0.032) than females. Reaction time, movement time, and total response time were significantly faster under high difficulty conditions for both genders (P < 0.001). This study suggests that baseball and softball pitchers and fielders should have sufficient time to protect their head from a batted ball under optimal conditions if they are adequately prepared for the task.

  5. Human task performance baseline: results from a cross-band facial identification perception study

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Byrd, Kenneth A.; Choi, Hee-Sue

    2015-05-01

    Cross-band facial recognition is a difficult task, even for the most robust matching algorithms. Inherent factors such as camera effects (blur, noise, and sampling), and variation in pose and illumination, are known to negatively affect algorithm performance. Because cross-band matching algorithms are in the infancy of development, it is currently unclear if their performance is superior to human observers performing this task. In this paper, we present findings from a pilot study aimed at analyzing the ability of an ensemble of human observers to perform the 1:N cross-band facial identification task on degraded facial images, where the probe and gallery images were captured in different spectral bands (visible, SWIR, MWIR and LWIR). Results from our 11-alternative forced choice perception study indicate that: 1) a group of observers familiar with even a subset of subjects in a gallery set are, on average, able to perform the task with higher probability (p > 0.15) than a group of observers with no prior exposure, and 2) task performance for both the familiar and unfamiliar groups increased 1.5-3.4% when matching multi-spectral probe images to galleries of 24-bit color facial images vs. 8-bit monochrome facial images. For the SWIR case, however, we observed a 9.1% increase in performance with 24-bit facial images vs. 8-bit facial images. Results from this study can be leveraged for future work directly comparing cross-band matching performance of humans vs. algorithms.

  6. Signal detection theory and methods for evaluating human performance in decision tasks

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Obrien, Kevin; Feldman, Evan M.

    1993-01-01

    Signal Detection Theory (SDT) can be used to assess decision making performance in tasks that are not commonly thought of as perceptual. SDT takes into account both the sensitivity and biases in responding when explaining the detection of external events. In the standard SDT tasks, stimuli are selected in order to reveal the sensory capabilities of the observer. SDT can also be used to describe performance when decisions must be made as to the classification of easily and reliably sensed stimuli. Numbers are stimuli that are minimally affected by sensory processing and can belong to meaningful categories that overlap. Multiple studies have shown that the task of categorizing numbers from overlapping normal distributions produces performance predictable by SDT. These findings are particularly interesting in view of the similarity between the task of the categorizing numbers and that of determining the status of a mechanical system based on numerical values that represent sensor readings. Examples of the use of SDT to evaluate performance in decision tasks are reviewed. The methods and assumptions of SDT are shown to be effective in the measurement, evaluation, and prediction of human performance in such tasks.

  7. ONE NIGHT OF SLEEP DEPRIVATION AFFECTS REACTION TIME, BUT NOT INTERFERENCE OR FACILITATION IN A STROOP TASK

    PubMed Central

    Cain, Sean W.; Silva, Edward J.; Chang, Anne-Marie; Ronda, Joseph M.; Duffy, Jeanne F.

    2011-01-01

    The Stroop color-naming task is one of the most widely studied tasks involving the inhibition of a prepotent response, regarded as an executive function. Several studies have examined performance on versions of the Stroop task under conditions of acute sleep deprivation. Though these studies revealed effects on Stroop performance, the results often do not differentiate between general effects of sleep deprivation on performance and effects specifically on interference in the Stroop task. To examine the effect of prolonged wakefulness on performance on the Stroop task, we studied participants in a 40-hour “constant routine” protocol during which they remained awake in constant conditions and performed a Stroop color-naming task every two hours. We found that reaction time was slowest when the color and word did not match (incongruent), fastest when the color and word did match (congruent), and intermediate when participants named the color of the non-word stimulus (neutral). Performance on all three trial types degraded significantly as a function of time awake. Extended wakefulness did not significantly change the additional time needed respond when the color and word did not match (Stroop interference), nor did it change the amount of facilitation when color and word matched. These results indicate that one night of sleep deprivation influences performance on the Stroop task by an overall increase in response time, but does not appear to impact the underlying processes of interference or facilitation. The results suggest that the degree to which an “executive function” is affected by sleep deprivation may depend on the particular executive function studied and the degree to which it is subserved by the prefrontal cortex. PMID:21477910

  8. One night of sleep deprivation affects reaction time, but not interference or facilitation in a Stroop task.

    PubMed

    Cain, Sean W; Silva, Edward J; Chang, Anne-Marie; Ronda, Joseph M; Duffy, Jeanne F

    2011-06-01

    The Stroop color-naming task is one of the most widely studied tasks involving the inhibition of a prepotent response, regarded as an executive function. Several studies have examined performance on versions of the Stroop task under conditions of acute sleep deprivation. Though these studies revealed effects on Stroop performance, the results often do not differentiate between general effects of sleep deprivation on performance and effects specifically on interference in the Stroop task. To examine the effect of prolonged wakefulness on performance on the Stroop task, we studied participants in a 40-h "constant routine" protocol during which they remained awake in constant conditions and performed a Stroop color-naming task every two hours. We found that reaction time was slowest when the color and word did not match (incongruent), fastest when the color and word did match (congruent), and intermediate when participants named the color of the non-word stimulus (neutral). Performance on all three trial types degraded significantly as a function of time awake. Extended wakefulness did not significantly change the additional time needed to respond when the color and word did not match (Stroop interference), nor did it change the amount of facilitation when color and word matched. These results indicate that one night of sleep deprivation influences performance on the Stroop task by an overall increase in response time, but does not appear to impact the underlying processes of interference or facilitation. The results suggest that the degree to which an "executive function" is affected by sleep deprivation may depend on the particular executive function studied and the degree to which it is subserved by the prefrontal cortex.

  9. Evaluation of high-definition television for remote task performance

    SciTech Connect

    Draper, J.V.; Fujita, Y.; Herndon, J.N.

    1987-04-01

    High-definition television (HDTV) transmits a video image with more than twice the number (1125 for HDTV to 525 for standard-resolution TV) of horizontal scan lines that standard-resolution TV provides. The improvement in picture quality (compared to standard-resolution TV) that the extra scan lines provide is impressive. Objects in the HDTV picture have more sharply defined edges, better contrast, and more accurate reproduction of shading and color patterns than do those in the standard-resolution TV picture. Because the TV viewing system is a key component for teleoperator performance, an improvement in TV picture quality could mean an improvement in the speed and accuracy with which teleoperators perform tasks. This report describes three experiments designed to evaluate the impact of HDTV on the performance of typical remote tasks. The performance of HDTV was compared to that of standard-resolution, monochromatic TV and standard-resolution, stereoscopic, monochromatic TV in the context of judgment of depth in a televised scene, visual inspection of an object, and performance of a typical remote handling task. The results of the three experiments show that in some areas HDTV can lead to improvement in teleoperator performance. Observers inspecting a small object for a flaw were more accurate with HDTV than with either of the standard-resolution systems. High resolution is critical for detection of small-scale flaws of the type in the experiment (a scratch on a glass bottle). These experiments provided an evaluation of HDTV television for use in tasks that must be routinely performed to remotely maintain a nuclear fuel reprocessing facility. 5 refs., 7 figs., 9 tabs.

  10. Task performance on constrained reconstructions: human observer performance compared with suboptimal Bayesian performance

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Wagner, Robert F.; Myers, Kyle J.; Hanson, Kenneth M.

    1992-06-01

    We have previously described how imaging systems and image reconstruction algorithms can be evaluated on the basis of how well binary-discrimination tasks can be performed by a machine algorithm that `views' the reconstructions. Algorithms used in these investigations have been based on approximations to the ideal observer of Bayesian statistical decision theory. The present work examines the performance of an extended family of such algorithmic observers viewing tomographic images reconstructed from a small number of views using the Cambridge Maximum Entropy software, MEMSYS 3. We investigate the effects on the performance of these observers due to varying the parameter (alpha) ; this parameter controls the stopping point of the iterative reconstruction technique and effectively determines the smoothness of the reconstruction. For the detection task considered here, performance is maximum at the lowest values of (alpha) studied; these values are encountered as one moves toward the limit of maximum likelihood estimation while maintaining the positivity constraint intrinsic to entropic priors. A breakdown in the validity of a Gaussian approximation used by one of the machine algorithms (the posterior probability) was observed in this region. Measurements on human observers performing the same task show that they perform comparably to the best machine observers in the region of highest machine scores, i.e., smallest values of (alpha) . For increasing values of (alpha) , both human and machine observer performance degrade. The falloff in human performance is more rapid than that of the machine observer at the largest values of (alpha) (lowest performance) studied. This behavior is common to all such studies of the so-called psychometric function.

  11. Gait characteristics in patients with major depression performing cognitive and motor tasks while walking.

    PubMed

    Radovanović, Saša; Jovičić, Milica; Marić, Nadja P; Kostić, Vladimir

    2014-06-30

    Depressed patients demonstrate alterations in motor and cognitive functioning that can affect their adjustments to the variations in everyday life environment. The objective was to explore gait parameters and variability of patients with major depressive disorder in dual task walking situations. Eight patients and 20 healthy controls performed motor, mental and combined motor+mental tasks while walking. Calculated parameters were cycle time, stride length, swing time, double support time and their coefficients of variation (CV). Patients demonstrated greater gait variability (swing time CV) than controls during baseline walk (t(26)=2.64, p<0.05) and motor dual task (t(26)=3.68, p<0.05). Moreover, the transition from mental to combined task decreased stride length (M=126.48±15.35 and M=121.19±13.55, p<0.001) and increased double support time (M=0.266±0.072 and M=0.287±0.076, p<0.01) only in controls. Also, gait variability increased in controls during the combined task, while remaining the same or decreasing in patients. Tasks that required greater cognitive involvement affected gait variability in patients more than controls, but only up to a certain level, after which patients׳ stability appeared unaffected by the increase of cognitive demand. This could be explained by a tendency of patients to neglect complex cognitive tasks while walking in order to preserve stability and prevent possible falls.

  12. Predicting subsequent task performance from goal motivation and goal failure

    PubMed Central

    Healy, Laura C.; Ntoumanis, Nikos; Stewart, Brandon D.; Duda, Joan L.

    2015-01-01

    Recent research has demonstrated that the cognitive processes associated with goal pursuit can continue to interfere with unrelated tasks when a goal is unfulfilled. Drawing from the self-regulation and goal-striving literatures, the present study explored the impact of goal failure on subsequent cognitive and physical task performance. Furthermore, we examined if the autonomous or controlled motivation underpinning goal striving moderates the responses to goal failure. Athletes (75 male, 59 female, Mage = 19.90 years, SDage = 3.50) completed a cycling trial with the goal of covering a given distance in 8 min. Prior to the trial, their motivation was primed using a video. During the trial they were provided with manipulated performance feedback, thus creating conditions of goal success or failure. No differences emerged in the responses to goal failure between the primed motivation or performance feedback conditions. We make recommendations for future research into how individuals can deal with failure in goal striving. PMID:26191029

  13. Is dual-task performance necessarily impaired in space?

    PubMed

    Fowler, B; Bock, O; Comfort, D

    2000-01-01

    Recent single-subject experiments in space have reported impaired dual-task performance that could result from either a direct effect of microgravity on the central nervous system or from the multistressor environment. We sought to distinguish between these hypotheses using 6 astronauts in the 16-day NASA Neurolab mission, testing them at intervals with a dual task consisting of primary pursuit tracking without vision of the hand and secondary reaction time (RT). The participants were highly trained, instructed to maintain a fixed attention strategy, and restrained in the apparatus. The results showed that absolute and variable tracking error, as well as correct RT and the standard deviation of RT, were unimpaired. However, RT errors became more variable, an effect attributed to a decrease in strategic control. We conclude that the impairments observed in previous dual-task space experiments can be attributed to stressors rather than to microgravity and that performance deficits are probably not a necessary concomitant of space flight if attention is paid to task design and astronaut training.

  14. Cue Utilization and Cognitive Load in Novel Task Performance

    PubMed Central

    Brouwers, Sue; Wiggins, Mark W.; Helton, William; O’Hare, David; Griffin, Barbara

    2016-01-01

    This study was designed to examine whether differences in cue utilization were associated with differences in performance during a novel, simulated rail control task, and whether these differences reflected a reduction in cognitive load. Two experiments were conducted, the first of which involved the completion of a 20-min rail control simulation that required participants to re-route trains that periodically required a diversion. Participants with a greater level of cue utilization recorded a consistently greater response latency, consistent with a strategy that maintained accuracy, but reduced the demands on cognitive resources. In the second experiment, participants completed the rail task, during which a concurrent, secondary task was introduced. The results revealed an interaction, whereby participants with lesser levels of cue utilization recorded an increase in response latency that exceeded the response latency recorded for participants with greater levels of cue utilization. The relative consistency of response latencies for participants with greater levels of cue utilization, across all blocks, despite the imposition of a secondary task, suggested that those participants with greater levels of cue utilization had adopted a strategy that was effectively minimizing the impact of additional sources of cognitive load on their performance. PMID:27064669

  15. The effect of exercise-induced arousal on cognitive task performance: a meta-regression analysis.

    PubMed

    Lambourne, Kate; Tomporowski, Phillip

    2010-06-23

    The effects of acute exercise on cognitive performance were examined using meta-analytic techniques. The overall mean effect size was dependent on the timing of cognitive assessment. During exercise, cognitive task performance was impaired by a mean effect of -0.14. However, impairments were only observed during the first 20min of exercise. Otherwise, exercise-induced arousal enhanced performance on tasks that involved rapid decisions and automatized behaviors. Following exercise, cognitive task performance improved by a mean effect of 0.20. Arousal continued to facilitate speeded mental processes and also enhanced memory storage and retrieval. Positive effects were observed following exercise regardless of whether the study protocol was designed to measure the effects of steady-state exercise, fatiguing exercise, or the inverted-U hypothesis. Finally, cognitive performance was affected differentially by exercise mode. Cycling was associated with enhanced performance during and after exercise, whereas treadmill running led to impaired performance during exercise and a small improvement in performance following exercise. These results are indicative of the complex relation between exercise and cognition. Cognitive performance may be enhanced or impaired depending on when it is measured, the type of cognitive task selected, and the type of exercise performed.

  16. Cognitive Style as a Factor Affecting Task-Based Reading Comprehension Test Scores

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Salmani-Nodoushan, Mohammad Ali

    2005-01-01

    For purposes of the present study, it was hypothesized that field (in)dependence would introduce systematic variance into Iranian EFL learners' overall and task-specific performance on task-based reading comprehension tests. 1743 freshman, sophomore, junior, and senior students all majoring in English at different Iranian universities and colleges…

  17. Do Content, Format, and Level of Inquiry Affect Scores on Open-Ended Science Tasks?

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Stecher, Brian M.; Klein, Stephen P.; Solano-Flores, Guillermo; McCaffrey, Dan; Robyn, Abby; Shavelson, Richard J.; Haertel, Edward

    This study investigated three factors that may contribute to the large variation in student performance across open-ended measures. These factors are content domain, format (whether the task required only pencil and paper or involved a hands-on manipulation of equipment), and level of inquiry (whether the task guided the student toward the…

  18. Trajectory generation for two robots cooperating to perform a task

    SciTech Connect

    Lewis, C.L.

    1995-10-01

    This paper formulates an algorithm for trajectory generation for two robots cooperating to perform an assembly task. Treating the two robots as a single redundant system, this paper derives two Jacobian matrices which relate the joint rates of the entire system to the relative motion of the grippers with respect to one another. The advantage of this formulation over existing methods is that a variety of secondary criteria can be conveniently satisfied using motion in the null-space of the relative Jacobian. This paper presents methods for generating dual-arm joint trajectories which perform assembly tasks while at the same time avoiding obstacles and joint limits, and also maintaining constraints on the absolute position and orientation of the end-effectors.

  19. Observer analysis and its impact on task performance modeling

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Jacobs, Eddie L.; Brown, Jeremy B.

    2014-05-01

    Fire fighters use relatively low cost thermal imaging cameras to locate hot spots and fire hazards in buildings. This research describes the analyses performed to study the impact of thermal image quality on fire fighter fire hazard detection task performance. Using human perception data collected by the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) for fire fighters detecting hazards in a thermal image, an observer analysis was performed to quantify the sensitivity and bias of each observer. Using this analysis, the subjects were divided into three groups representing three different levels of performance. The top-performing group was used for the remainder of the modeling. Models were developed which related image quality factors such as contrast, brightness, spatial resolution, and noise to task performance probabilities. The models were fitted to the human perception data using logistic regression, as well as probit regression. Probit regression was found to yield superior fits and showed that models with not only 2nd order parameter interactions, but also 3rd order parameter interactions performed the best.

  20. Influence of drive and timing mechanisms on breathing pattern and ventilation during mental task performance.

    PubMed

    Wientjes, C J; Grossman, P; Gaillard, A W

    1998-09-01

    Assessment of multiple respiratory measures may provide insight into how behavioral demands affect the breathing pattern. This is illustrated by data from a study among 44 subjects, in which tidal volume, respiration rate, minute ventilation and indices of central drive and timing mechanisms were assessed via inductive plethysmography, in addition to end-tidal PCO2. After a baseline, three conditions of a memory comparison task were presented. The first two conditions differed only with regard to the presence or absence of feedback of performance (NFB and FB). In the third 'all-or-nothing' (AON) condition, subjects only received a monetary bonus, if their performance exceeded that of the previous two conditions. Minute ventilation increased from baseline to all task conditions, and from NFB and FB to AON. Respiration rate increased in all task conditions, but there were no differences between task conditions. Tidal volume decreased during NFB, but was equal to baseline during FB and AON. Of the respiratory control indices, inspiratory flow rate covaried much more closely with minute ventilation than duty cycle. The task performance induced a minor degree of hyperventilation. The discussion focusses on how behavioral demands affect respiratory control processes to produce alterations in breathing pattern and ventilation.

  1. Transient tasks and enduring emotions: the impacts of affective content, task relevance, and picture duration on the sustained late positive potential.

    PubMed

    Gable, Philip A; Adams, David L; Proudfit, Greg Hajcak

    2015-03-01

    The present experiments were designed to examine the influences of picture duration, task relevance, and affective content on neural measures of sustained engagement, as indexed by the late positive potential (LPP). Much prior work has shown that the event-related potential in and around the P3-here referred to as the early LPP-is modulated by affective content, nonaffective task relevance, and stimulus duration. However, later portions of the LPP (>1,000 ms) may represent either a return to baseline or a continued physiological process related to motivational engagement. In the present experiments, we tested whether modulation of the later LPP depends on varying motivational engagement using stimulus duration, affective content, and task relevance. The results of Experiment 1 revealed that stimulus duration modulates the sustained LPP (i.e., 1,000-2,000 ms) in response to affective, but not task-relevant, stimuli from a modified counting oddball task. The results of Experiment 2 revealed that the sustained increase in the LPP is sensitive to both emotional content and task relevance when the task requires sustained engagement with target stimuli (e.g., determining the duration of stimulus presentation). The impacts of emotional content and task relevance had additive effects on the later portion of the LPP. In sum, both emotional content and task relevance can result in a protracted increase in the later LPP. These data suggest that affective content automatically sustains engagement, whereas task relevance only prolongs engagement when it is necessary for task completion.

  2. ERP measures of math anxiety: how math anxiety affects working memory and mental calculation tasks?

    PubMed

    Klados, Manousos A; Simos, Panagiotis; Micheloyannis, Sifis; Margulies, Daniel; Bamidis, Panagiotis D

    2015-01-01

    There have been several attempts to account for the impact of Mathematical Anxiety (MA) on brain activity with variable results. The present study examines the effects of MA on ERP amplitude during performance of simple arithmetic calculations and working memory tasks. Data were obtained from 32 university students as they solved four types of arithmetic problems (one- and two-digit addition and multiplication) and a working memory task comprised of three levels of difficulty (1, 2, and 3-back task). Compared to the Low-MA group, High-MA individuals demonstrated reduced ERP amplitude at frontocentral (between 180-320 ms) and centroparietal locations (between 380-420 ms). These effects were independent of task difficulty/complexity, individual performance, and general state/trait anxiety levels. Results support the hypothesis that higher levels of self-reported MA are associated with lower cortical activation during the early stages of the processing of numeric stimuli in the context of cognitive tasks.

  3. Effects of multitasking on operator performance using computational and auditory tasks.

    PubMed

    Fasanya, Bankole K

    2016-09-01

    This study investigated the effects of multiple cognitive tasks on human performance. Twenty-four students at North Carolina A&T State University participated in the study. The primary task was auditory signal change perception and the secondary task was a computational task. Results showed that participants' performance in a single task was statistically significantly different from their performance in combined tasks: (a) algebra problems (algebra problem primary and auditory perception secondary); (b) auditory perception tasks (auditory perception primary and algebra problems secondary); and (c) mean false-alarm score in auditory perception (auditory detection primary and algebra problems secondary). Using signal detection theory (SDT), participants' performance measured in terms of sensitivity was calculated as -0.54 for combined tasks (algebra problems the primary task) and -0.53 auditory perceptions the primary task. During auditory perception tasks alone, SDT was found to be 2.51. Performance was 83% in a single task compared to 17% when combined tasks.

  4. Working memory capacity predicts conflict-task performance.

    PubMed

    Gulbinaite, Rasa; Johnson, Addie

    2014-01-01

    The relationship between the ability to maintain task goals and working memory capacity (WMC) is firmly established, but evidence for WMC-related differences in conflict processing is mixed. We investigated whether WMC (measured using two complex-span tasks) mediates differences in adjustments of cognitive control in response to conflict. Participants performed a Simon task in which congruent and incongruent trials were equiprobable, but in which the proportion of congruency repetitions (congruent trials followed by congruent trials or incongruent trials followed by incongruent trials) and thus the need for trial-by-trial adjustments in cognitive control varied by block. The overall Simon effect did not depend on WMC capacity. However, for the low-WMC participants the Simon effect decreased as the proportion of congruency repetitions decreased, whereas for the high- and average-WMC participants it was relatively constant across conditions. Distribution analysis of the Simon effect showed more evidence for the inhibition of stimulus location in the low- than in the high-WMC participants, especially when the proportion of congruency repetitions was low. We hypothesize that low-WMC individuals exhibit more interference from task-irrelevant information due to weaker preparatory control prior to stimulus presentation and, thus, stronger reliance on reactive recruitment of cognitive control. PMID:24199908

  5. Working memory capacity predicts conflict-task performance.

    PubMed

    Gulbinaite, Rasa; Johnson, Addie

    2014-01-01

    The relationship between the ability to maintain task goals and working memory capacity (WMC) is firmly established, but evidence for WMC-related differences in conflict processing is mixed. We investigated whether WMC (measured using two complex-span tasks) mediates differences in adjustments of cognitive control in response to conflict. Participants performed a Simon task in which congruent and incongruent trials were equiprobable, but in which the proportion of congruency repetitions (congruent trials followed by congruent trials or incongruent trials followed by incongruent trials) and thus the need for trial-by-trial adjustments in cognitive control varied by block. The overall Simon effect did not depend on WMC capacity. However, for the low-WMC participants the Simon effect decreased as the proportion of congruency repetitions decreased, whereas for the high- and average-WMC participants it was relatively constant across conditions. Distribution analysis of the Simon effect showed more evidence for the inhibition of stimulus location in the low- than in the high-WMC participants, especially when the proportion of congruency repetitions was low. We hypothesize that low-WMC individuals exhibit more interference from task-irrelevant information due to weaker preparatory control prior to stimulus presentation and, thus, stronger reliance on reactive recruitment of cognitive control.

  6. Comparisons of population subgroups performance on a keyboard psychomotor task

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Stapleford, R. L.

    1973-01-01

    Response time and pass/fail data were obtained from 163 subjects performing a psychomotor task. The basic task comprised a random five digit number briefly displayed to the subject at the start of each trail, and the keyboard on which the subject was to enter the number as fast as he could accurately do so after the display was extinguished. Some tests were run with the addition of a secondary task which required the subject to respond to a displayed light appearing at a random time. Matched pairs of subjects were selected from the group to analyze the effects of age, sex, intelligence, prior keyboard skill, and drinking habits. There was little or no effect due to age or drinking habits. Differences in response time were: average IQ subjects faster than low IQ subjects by 0.5 to 0.6 sec; subjects with prior keyboard skill faster by 0.4 to 0.5 sec; and female subjects faster by 0.2 to 0.3 sec. These effects were generally insensitive to the presence of the secondary task.

  7. Does complexity matter? Meta-analysis of learner performance in artificial grammar tasks.

    PubMed

    Schiff, Rachel; Katan, Pesia

    2014-01-01

    Complexity has been shown to affect performance on artificial grammar learning (AGL) tasks (categorization of test items as grammatical/ungrammatical according to the implicitly trained grammar rules). However, previously published AGL experiments did not utilize consistent measures to investigate the comprehensive effect of grammar complexity on task performance. The present study focused on computerizing Bollt and Jones's (2000) technique of calculating topological entropy (TE), a quantitative measure of AGL charts' complexity, with the aim of examining associations between grammar systems' TE and learners' AGL task performance. We surveyed the literature and identified 56 previous AGL experiments based on 10 different grammars that met the sampling criteria. Using the automated matrix-lift-action method, we assigned a TE value for each of these 10 previously used AGL systems and examined its correlation with learners' task performance. The meta-regression analysis showed a significant correlation, demonstrating that the complexity effect transcended the different settings and conditions in which the categorization task was performed. The results reinforced the importance of using this new automated tool to uniformly measure grammar systems' complexity when experimenting with and evaluating the findings of AGL studies.

  8. Musical training, bilingualism, and executive function: a closer look at task switching and dual-task performance.

    PubMed

    Moradzadeh, Linda; Blumenthal, Galit; Wiseheart, Melody

    2015-07-01

    This study investigated whether musical training and bilingualism are associated with enhancements in specific components of executive function, namely, task switching and dual-task performance. Participants (n = 153) belonging to one of four groups (monolingual musician, bilingual musician, bilingual non-musician, or monolingual non-musician) were matched on age and socioeconomic status and administered task switching and dual-task paradigms. Results demonstrated reduced global and local switch costs in musicians compared with non-musicians, suggesting that musical training can contribute to increased efficiency in the ability to shift flexibly between mental sets. On dual-task performance, musicians also outperformed non-musicians. There was neither a cognitive advantage for bilinguals relative to monolinguals, nor an interaction between music and language to suggest additive effects of both types of experience. These findings demonstrate that long-term musical training is associated with improvements in task switching and dual-task performance.

  9. Amphetamine affects the start of responding in the peak interval timing task.

    PubMed

    Taylor, Kathleen M; Horvitz, Jon C; Balsam, Peter D

    2007-02-22

    In this paper we investigate how amphetamine affects performance in a PI task by comparing two analyses of responding during peak trials. After training on 24 s fixed interval (FI-24) with 96 s peak trials, rats were given amphetamine for 4 consecutive days at doses of .5 and 1.0 mg/kg. Responses during peak trials were fitted with a Gaussian distribution to estimate the expected time of reinforcement from the peak time. A single trials analysis was also performed to determine the start time and stop time of the transition into and out of a high rate of responding on each peak trial. Amphetamine significantly decreased peak times as measured with the Gaussian curve fitting. However, in the single trials analysis, animals initiated responding significantly earlier, but did not stop responding earlier. Thus, fitting a Gaussian to the average performance across trials sometimes provides a different characterization of the timing process than does analyzing the start and stop of responding on individual trials. In the current experiment, the latter approach provided a more precise characterization of the effects of amphetamine on response timing.

  10. Informational properties of neural nets performing algorithmic and logical tasks.

    PubMed

    Ritz, B M; Hofacker, G L

    1996-06-01

    It is argued that the genetic information necessary to encode an algorithmic neural processor tutoring an otherwise randomly connected biological neural net is represented by the entropy of the analogous minimal Turing machine. Such a near-minimal machine is constructed performing the whole range of bivalent propositional logic in n variables. Neural nets computing the same task are presented; their informational entropy can be gauged with reference to the analogous Turing machine. It is also shown that nets with one hidden layer can be trained to perform algorithms solving propositional logic by error back-propagation. PMID:8672562

  11. Informational properties of neural nets performing algorithmic and logical tasks.

    PubMed

    Ritz, B M; Hofacker, G L

    1996-06-01

    It is argued that the genetic information necessary to encode an algorithmic neural processor tutoring an otherwise randomly connected biological neural net is represented by the entropy of the analogous minimal Turing machine. Such a near-minimal machine is constructed performing the whole range of bivalent propositional logic in n variables. Neural nets computing the same task are presented; their informational entropy can be gauged with reference to the analogous Turing machine. It is also shown that nets with one hidden layer can be trained to perform algorithms solving propositional logic by error back-propagation.

  12. Attentional Mechanisms during the Performance of a Subsecond Timing Task.

    PubMed

    Toscano-Zapién, Anna L; Velázquez-López, Daniel; Velázquez-Martínez, David N

    2016-01-01

    There is evidence that timing processes in the suprasecond scale are modulated by attentional mechanisms; in addition, some studies have shown that attentional mechanisms also affect timing in the subsecond scale. Our aim was to study eye movements and pupil diameter during a temporal bisection task in the subsecond range. Subjects were trained to discriminate anchor intervals of 200 or 800 msec, and were then confronted with intermediate durations. Eye movements revealed that subjects used different cognitive strategies during the bisection timing task. When the stimulus to be timed appeared randomly at a central or 4 peripheral positions on a screen, some subjects choose to maintain their gaze toward the central area while other followed the peripheral placement of the stimulus; some others subjects used both strategies. The time of subjective equality did not differ between subjects who employed different attentional mechanisms. However, differences emerged in the timing variance and attentional indexes (time taken to initial fixation, latency to respond, pupil dilatation and duration and number of fixations to stimulus areas). Timing in the subsecond range seems invariant despite the use of different attentional strategies. Future research should determine whether the selection of attentional mechanisms is related to particular timing tasks or instructions or whether it represents idiosyncratic cognitive "styles". PMID:27467762

  13. Attentional Mechanisms during the Performance of a Subsecond Timing Task

    PubMed Central

    Velázquez-Martínez, David N.

    2016-01-01

    There is evidence that timing processes in the suprasecond scale are modulated by attentional mechanisms; in addition, some studies have shown that attentional mechanisms also affect timing in the subsecond scale. Our aim was to study eye movements and pupil diameter during a temporal bisection task in the subsecond range. Subjects were trained to discriminate anchor intervals of 200 or 800 msec, and were then confronted with intermediate durations. Eye movements revealed that subjects used different cognitive strategies during the bisection timing task. When the stimulus to be timed appeared randomly at a central or 4 peripheral positions on a screen, some subjects choose to maintain their gaze toward the central area while other followed the peripheral placement of the stimulus; some others subjects used both strategies. The time of subjective equality did not differ between subjects who employed different attentional mechanisms. However, differences emerged in the timing variance and attentional indexes (time taken to initial fixation, latency to respond, pupil dilatation and duration and number of fixations to stimulus areas). Timing in the subsecond range seems invariant despite the use of different attentional strategies. Future research should determine whether the selection of attentional mechanisms is related to particular timing tasks or instructions or whether it represents idiosyncratic cognitive “styles”. PMID:27467762

  14. Attentional Mechanisms during the Performance of a Subsecond Timing Task.

    PubMed

    Toscano-Zapién, Anna L; Velázquez-López, Daniel; Velázquez-Martínez, David N

    2016-01-01

    There is evidence that timing processes in the suprasecond scale are modulated by attentional mechanisms; in addition, some studies have shown that attentional mechanisms also affect timing in the subsecond scale. Our aim was to study eye movements and pupil diameter during a temporal bisection task in the subsecond range. Subjects were trained to discriminate anchor intervals of 200 or 800 msec, and were then confronted with intermediate durations. Eye movements revealed that subjects used different cognitive strategies during the bisection timing task. When the stimulus to be timed appeared randomly at a central or 4 peripheral positions on a screen, some subjects choose to maintain their gaze toward the central area while other followed the peripheral placement of the stimulus; some others subjects used both strategies. The time of subjective equality did not differ between subjects who employed different attentional mechanisms. However, differences emerged in the timing variance and attentional indexes (time taken to initial fixation, latency to respond, pupil dilatation and duration and number of fixations to stimulus areas). Timing in the subsecond range seems invariant despite the use of different attentional strategies. Future research should determine whether the selection of attentional mechanisms is related to particular timing tasks or instructions or whether it represents idiosyncratic cognitive "styles".

  15. A wavelet contrast metric for the targeting task performance metric

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Preece, Bradley L.; Flug, Eric A.

    2016-05-01

    Target acquisition performance depends strongly on the contrast of the target. The Targeting Task Performance (TTP) metric, within the Night Vision Integrated Performance Model (NV-IPM), uses a combination of resolution, signal-to-noise ratio (SNR), and contrast to predict and model system performance. While the dependence on resolution and SNR are well defined and understood, defining a robust and versatile contrast metric for a wide variety of acquisition tasks is more difficult. In this correspondence, a wavelet contrast metric (WCM) is developed under the assumption that the human eye processes spatial differences in a manner similar to a wavelet transform. The amount of perceivable information, or useful wavelet coefficients, is used to predict the total viewable contrast to the human eye. The WCM is intended to better match the measured performance of the human vision system for high-contrast, low-contrast, and low-observable targets. After further validation, the new contrast metric can be incorporated using a modified TTP metric into the latest Army target acquisition software suite, the NV-IPM.

  16. Temporal prediction errors modulate task-switching performance.

    PubMed

    Limongi, Roberto; Silva, Angélica M; Góngora-Costa, Begoña

    2015-01-01

    We have previously shown that temporal prediction errors (PEs, the differences between the expected and the actual stimulus' onset times) modulate the effective connectivity between the anterior cingulate cortex and the right anterior insular cortex (rAI), causing the activity of the rAI to decrease. The activity of the rAI is associated with efficient performance under uncertainty (e.g., changing a prepared behavior when a change demand is not expected), which leads to hypothesize that temporal PEs might disrupt behavior-change performance under uncertainty. This hypothesis has not been tested at a behavioral level. In this work, we evaluated this hypothesis within the context of task switching and concurrent temporal predictions. Our participants performed temporal predictions while observing one moving ball striking a stationary ball which bounced off with a variable temporal gap. Simultaneously, they performed a simple color comparison task. In some trials, a change signal made the participants change their behaviors. Performance accuracy decreased as a function of both the temporal PE and the delay. Explaining these results without appealing to ad hoc concepts such as "executive control" is a challenge for cognitive neuroscience. We provide a predictive coding explanation. We hypothesize that exteroceptive and proprioceptive minimization of PEs would converge in a fronto-basal ganglia network which would include the rAI. Both temporal gaps (or uncertainty) and temporal PEs would drive and modulate this network respectively. Whereas the temporal gaps would drive the activity of the rAI, the temporal PEs would modulate the endogenous excitatory connections of the fronto-striatal network. We conclude that in the context of perceptual uncertainty, the system is not able to minimize perceptual PE, causing the ongoing behavior to finalize and, in consequence, disrupting task switching. PMID:26379568

  17. Temporal prediction errors modulate task-switching performance

    PubMed Central

    Limongi, Roberto; Silva, Angélica M.; Góngora-Costa, Begoña

    2015-01-01

    We have previously shown that temporal prediction errors (PEs, the differences between the expected and the actual stimulus’ onset times) modulate the effective connectivity between the anterior cingulate cortex and the right anterior insular cortex (rAI), causing the activity of the rAI to decrease. The activity of the rAI is associated with efficient performance under uncertainty (e.g., changing a prepared behavior when a change demand is not expected), which leads to hypothesize that temporal PEs might disrupt behavior-change performance under uncertainty. This hypothesis has not been tested at a behavioral level. In this work, we evaluated this hypothesis within the context of task switching and concurrent temporal predictions. Our participants performed temporal predictions while observing one moving ball striking a stationary ball which bounced off with a variable temporal gap. Simultaneously, they performed a simple color comparison task. In some trials, a change signal made the participants change their behaviors. Performance accuracy decreased as a function of both the temporal PE and the delay. Explaining these results without appealing to ad hoc concepts such as “executive control” is a challenge for cognitive neuroscience. We provide a predictive coding explanation. We hypothesize that exteroceptive and proprioceptive minimization of PEs would converge in a fronto-basal ganglia network which would include the rAI. Both temporal gaps (or uncertainty) and temporal PEs would drive and modulate this network respectively. Whereas the temporal gaps would drive the activity of the rAI, the temporal PEs would modulate the endogenous excitatory connections of the fronto-striatal network. We conclude that in the context of perceptual uncertainty, the system is not able to minimize perceptual PE, causing the ongoing behavior to finalize and, in consequence, disrupting task switching. PMID:26379568

  18. Temporal prediction errors modulate task-switching performance.

    PubMed

    Limongi, Roberto; Silva, Angélica M; Góngora-Costa, Begoña

    2015-01-01

    We have previously shown that temporal prediction errors (PEs, the differences between the expected and the actual stimulus' onset times) modulate the effective connectivity between the anterior cingulate cortex and the right anterior insular cortex (rAI), causing the activity of the rAI to decrease. The activity of the rAI is associated with efficient performance under uncertainty (e.g., changing a prepared behavior when a change demand is not expected), which leads to hypothesize that temporal PEs might disrupt behavior-change performance under uncertainty. This hypothesis has not been tested at a behavioral level. In this work, we evaluated this hypothesis within the context of task switching and concurrent temporal predictions. Our participants performed temporal predictions while observing one moving ball striking a stationary ball which bounced off with a variable temporal gap. Simultaneously, they performed a simple color comparison task. In some trials, a change signal made the participants change their behaviors. Performance accuracy decreased as a function of both the temporal PE and the delay. Explaining these results without appealing to ad hoc concepts such as "executive control" is a challenge for cognitive neuroscience. We provide a predictive coding explanation. We hypothesize that exteroceptive and proprioceptive minimization of PEs would converge in a fronto-basal ganglia network which would include the rAI. Both temporal gaps (or uncertainty) and temporal PEs would drive and modulate this network respectively. Whereas the temporal gaps would drive the activity of the rAI, the temporal PEs would modulate the endogenous excitatory connections of the fronto-striatal network. We conclude that in the context of perceptual uncertainty, the system is not able to minimize perceptual PE, causing the ongoing behavior to finalize and, in consequence, disrupting task switching.

  19. Typical and atypical antipsychotic medications differentially affect two nondeclarative memory tasks in schizophrenic patients: a double dissociation.

    PubMed

    Beninger, Richard J; Wasserman, James; Zanibbi, Katherine; Charbonneau, Danielle; Mangels, Jennifer; Beninger, Bruce V

    2003-06-01

    Nondeclarative memory (NDM) has subtypes associated with different brain regions; learning of a probabilistic classification task is impaired by striatal damage and learning of a gambling task is impaired by ventromedial prefrontocortical damage. Typical and atypical antipsychotic medications differentially affect immediate early gene expression in the striatum and frontal cortex in normal rats. This suggested the hypothesis that schizophrenic patients treated with typical antipsychotics will have impaired probabilistic classification learning (PCL) and that similar patients treated with atypical antipsychotics will have impaired learning of the gambling task. Groups of schizophrenia patients treated with typical or atypical antipsychotics did not differ from each other on the Brief Psychiatric Rating Scale (BPRS), Mini Mental State Exam (MMSE) or a number of indexes of the Wisconsin Card Sorting Task (WCST) but performed worse than normal controls on these instruments. In the first study, patients treated with typicals (n=20) but not atypicals (n=20) or normal controls (n=32) were impaired in probabilistic classification. In the second study, those treated with atypicals (n=18) but not typicals (n=18) or normal controls (n=18) were impaired in the gambling task. Results suggest that typical and atypical antipsychotics differentially affect nondeclarative memory mediated by different brain regions. PMID:12729880

  20. Modeling boost performance using a two dimensional implementation of the targeting task performance metric

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Preece, Bradley L.; Haefner, David P.; Fanning, Jonathan D.

    2012-06-01

    Using post-processing filters to enhance image detail, a process commonly referred to as boost, can significantly affect the performance of an EO/IR system. The US Army's target acquisition models currently use the Targeting Task Performance (TTP) metric to quantify sensor performance. The TTP metric accounts for each element in the system including: blur and noise introduced by the imager, any additional post-processing steps, and the effects of the Human Visual System (HVS). The current implementation of the TTP metric assumes spatial separability, which can introduce significant errors when the TTP is applied to systems using non-separable filters. To accurately apply the TTP metric to systems incorporating boost, we have implement a two-dimensional (2D) version of the TTP metric. The accuracy of the 2D TTP metric was verified through a series of perception experiments involving various levels of boost. The 2D TTP metric has been incorporated into the Night Vision Integrated Performance Model (NV-IPM) allowing accurate system modeling of non-separable image filters.

  1. Is Performance in Task-Cuing Experiments Mediated by Task Set Selection or Associative Compound Retrieval?

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Forrest, Charlotte L. D.; Monsell, Stephen; McLaren, Ian P. L.

    2014-01-01

    Task-cuing experiments are usually intended to explore control of task set. But when small stimulus sets are used, they plausibly afford learning of the response associated with a combination of cue and stimulus, without reference to tasks. In 3 experiments we presented the typical trials of a task-cuing experiment: a cue (colored shape) followed,…

  2. The Effect of a Workload-Preview on Task-Prioritization and Task-Performance

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Minotra, Dev

    2012-01-01

    With increased volume and sophistication of cyber attacks in recent years, maintaining situation awareness and effective task-prioritization strategy is critical to the task of cybersecurity analysts. However, high levels of mental-workload associated with the task of cybersecurity analyst's limits their ability to prioritize tasks.…

  3. Effect of alternative video displays on postures, perceived effort, and performance during microsurgery skill tasks.

    PubMed

    Yu, Denny; Green, Cooper; Kasten, Steven J; Sackllah, Michael E; Armstrong, Thomas J

    2016-03-01

    Physical work demands and posture constraint from operating microscopes may adversely affect microsurgeon health and performance. Alternative video displays were developed to reduce posture constraints. Their effects on postures, perceived efforts, and performance were compared with the microscope. Sixteen participants performed microsurgery skill tasks using both stereo and non-stereoscopic microscopes and video displays. Results showed that neck angles were 9-13° more neutral and shoulder flexion were 9-10° more elevated on the video display than the microscope. Time observed in neck extension was higher (30% vs. 17%) and neck movements were 3x more frequent on the video display than microscopes. Ratings of perceived efforts did not differ among displays, but usability ratings were better on the microscope than the video display. Performance times on the video displays were 66-110% slower than microscopes. Although postures improved, further research is needed to improve task performance on video displays.

  4. Effects of reaction time variability and age on brain activity during Stroop task performance.

    PubMed

    Tam, Angela; Luedke, Angela C; Walsh, Jeremy J; Fernandez-Ruiz, Juan; Garcia, Angeles

    2015-09-01

    Variability in reaction time during task performance may reflect fluctuations in attention and cause reduced performance in goal-directed tasks, yet it is unclear whether the mechanisms behind this phenomenon change with age. Using fMRI, we tested young and cognitively healthy older adults with the Stroop task to determine whether aging affects the neural mechanisms underlying intra-individual reaction time variability. We found significant between-group differences in BOLD activity modulated by reaction time. In older adults, longer reaction times were associated with greater activity in frontoparietal attentional areas, while in younger adults longer reaction times were associated with greater activity in default mode network areas. Our results suggest that the neural correlates of reaction time variability change with healthy aging, reinforcing the concept of functional plasticity to maintain high cognitive function throughout the lifespan.

  5. Benefits of Stimulus Exposure: Developmental Learning Independent of Task Performance

    PubMed Central

    Green, David B.; Ohlemacher, Jocelyn; Rosen, Merri J.

    2016-01-01

    Perceptual learning (training-induced performance improvement) can be elicited by task-irrelevant stimulus exposure in humans. In contrast, task-irrelevant stimulus exposure in animals typically disrupts perception in juveniles while causing little to no effect in adults. This may be due to the extent of exposure, which is brief in humans while chronic in animals. Here we assessed the effects of short bouts of passive stimulus exposure on learning during development in gerbils, compared with non-passive stimulus exposure (i.e., during testing). We used prepulse inhibition of the acoustic startle response, a method that can be applied at any age, to measure gap detection thresholds across four age groups, spanning development. First, we showed that both gap detection thresholds and gap detection learning across sessions displayed a long developmental trajectory, improving throughout the juvenile period. Additionally, we demonstrated larger within- and across-animal performance variability in younger animals. These results are generally consistent with results in humans, where there are extended developmental trajectories for both the perception of temporally-varying signals, and the effects of perceptual training, as well as increased variability and poorer performance consistency in children. We then chose an age (mid-juveniles) that displayed clear learning over sessions in order to assess effects of brief passive stimulus exposure on this learning. We compared learning in mid-juveniles exposed to either gap detection testing (gaps paired with startles) or equivalent gap exposure without testing (gaps alone) for three sessions. Learning was equivalent in both these groups and better than both naïve age-matched animals and controls receiving no gap exposure but only startle testing. Thus, short bouts of exposure to gaps independent of task performance is sufficient to induce learning at this age, and is as effective as gap detection testing. PMID:27378837

  6. Benefits of Stimulus Exposure: Developmental Learning Independent of Task Performance.

    PubMed

    Green, David B; Ohlemacher, Jocelyn; Rosen, Merri J

    2016-01-01

    Perceptual learning (training-induced performance improvement) can be elicited by task-irrelevant stimulus exposure in humans. In contrast, task-irrelevant stimulus exposure in animals typically disrupts perception in juveniles while causing little to no effect in adults. This may be due to the extent of exposure, which is brief in humans while chronic in animals. Here we assessed the effects of short bouts of passive stimulus exposure on learning during development in gerbils, compared with non-passive stimulus exposure (i.e., during testing). We used prepulse inhibition of the acoustic startle response, a method that can be applied at any age, to measure gap detection thresholds across four age groups, spanning development. First, we showed that both gap detection thresholds and gap detection learning across sessions displayed a long developmental trajectory, improving throughout the juvenile period. Additionally, we demonstrated larger within- and across-animal performance variability in younger animals. These results are generally consistent with results in humans, where there are extended developmental trajectories for both the perception of temporally-varying signals, and the effects of perceptual training, as well as increased variability and poorer performance consistency in children. We then chose an age (mid-juveniles) that displayed clear learning over sessions in order to assess effects of brief passive stimulus exposure on this learning. We compared learning in mid-juveniles exposed to either gap detection testing (gaps paired with startles) or equivalent gap exposure without testing (gaps alone) for three sessions. Learning was equivalent in both these groups and better than both naïve age-matched animals and controls receiving no gap exposure but only startle testing. Thus, short bouts of exposure to gaps independent of task performance is sufficient to induce learning at this age, and is as effective as gap detection testing.

  7. Benefits of Stimulus Exposure: Developmental Learning Independent of Task Performance.

    PubMed

    Green, David B; Ohlemacher, Jocelyn; Rosen, Merri J

    2016-01-01

    Perceptual learning (training-induced performance improvement) can be elicited by task-irrelevant stimulus exposure in humans. In contrast, task-irrelevant stimulus exposure in animals typically disrupts perception in juveniles while causing little to no effect in adults. This may be due to the extent of exposure, which is brief in humans while chronic in animals. Here we assessed the effects of short bouts of passive stimulus exposure on learning during development in gerbils, compared with non-passive stimulus exposure (i.e., during testing). We used prepulse inhibition of the acoustic startle response, a method that can be applied at any age, to measure gap detection thresholds across four age groups, spanning development. First, we showed that both gap detection thresholds and gap detection learning across sessions displayed a long developmental trajectory, improving throughout the juvenile period. Additionally, we demonstrated larger within- and across-animal performance variability in younger animals. These results are generally consistent with results in humans, where there are extended developmental trajectories for both the perception of temporally-varying signals, and the effects of perceptual training, as well as increased variability and poorer performance consistency in children. We then chose an age (mid-juveniles) that displayed clear learning over sessions in order to assess effects of brief passive stimulus exposure on this learning. We compared learning in mid-juveniles exposed to either gap detection testing (gaps paired with startles) or equivalent gap exposure without testing (gaps alone) for three sessions. Learning was equivalent in both these groups and better than both naïve age-matched animals and controls receiving no gap exposure but only startle testing. Thus, short bouts of exposure to gaps independent of task performance is sufficient to induce learning at this age, and is as effective as gap detection testing. PMID:27378837

  8. Sex Differences in Performance on Piagetian Spatial Tasks: Differences in Competence or Performance?

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Liben, Lynn S.; Golbeck, Susan L.

    1980-01-01

    Results indicate that the performance factors examined do, in part, account for subjects' difficulties on standard Piagetian horizontality and verticality tasks but that they cannot fully account for the overall sex differences. (RH)

  9. Characterization of cognitive and motor performance during dual-tasking in healthy older adults and patients with Parkinson's disease.

    PubMed

    Wild, Lucia Bartmann; de Lima, Daiane Borba; Balardin, Joana Bisol; Rizzi, Luana; Giacobbo, Bruno Lima; Oliveira, Henrique Bianchi; de Lima Argimon, Irani Iracema; Peyré-Tartaruga, Leonardo Alexandre; Rieder, Carlos R M; Bromberg, Elke

    2013-02-01

    The primary purpose of this study was to investigate the effect of dual-tasking on cognitive performance and gait parameters in patients with idiopathic Parkinson's disease (PD) without dementia. The impact of cognitive task complexity on cognition and walking was also examined. Eighteen patients with PD (ages 53-88, 10 women; Hoehn and Yahr stage I-II) and 18 older adults (ages 61-84; 10 women) completed two neuropsychological measures of executive function/attention (the Stroop Test and Wisconsin Card Sorting Test). Cognitive performance and gait parameters related to functional mobility of stride were measured under single (cognitive task only) and dual-task (cognitive task during walking) conditions with different levels of difficulty and different types of stimuli. In addition, dual-task cognitive costs were calculated. Although cognitive performance showed no significant difference between controls and PD patients during single or dual-tasking conditions, only the patients had a decrease in cognitive performance during walking. Gait parameters of patients differed significantly from controls at single and dual-task conditions, indicating that patients gave priority to gait while cognitive performance suffered. Dual-task cognitive costs of patients increased with task complexity, reaching significantly higher values then controls in the arithmetic task, which was correlated with scores on executive function/attention (Stroop Color-Word Page). Baseline motor functioning and task executive/attentional load affect the performance of cognitive tasks of PD patients while walking. These findings provide insight into the functional strategies used by PD patients in the initial phases of the disease to manage dual-task interference. PMID:23052601

  10. Individual differences in 10-month-olds' performance on the A-not-B task.

    PubMed

    Johansson, Maria; Forssman, Linda; Bohlin, Gunilla

    2014-04-01

    This study used the classical A-not-B task (Piaget, ) to explore individual differences in cognitive flexibility in 10-month-old infants by: (1) examining how differences in search performance during A trials relate to search performance during B trials; (2) studying the relation between temperamental dimensions and A-not-B performance; and (3) investigating differences in search performance between looking and reaching responses within the same task. Forty infants were tested on a fixed-design-version of the A-not-B task, not allowing for training or individual adjustment, but instead eliciting additional search behaviors than the common correct responses in A trials and perseverative errors in B trials. Infants were also rated by their parents on the temperamental scales Activity level and Attention span. The main findings were: (1) performance on A trials affected B trial performance, with infants being more correct on A trials having more incorrect and less 'no search' responses on B trials; (2) activity level, but not attention span, was related to performance on the A-not-B task, with infants performing better on A trials having a lower activity level; and (3) there were a few differences in performance with regard to modality, indicating that responding correctly by looking may be less cognitively demanding than doing so by reaching. This study demonstrated that 10-month-olds show a wide variation of search behaviors on this A-not-B task, resulting in individual differences in performance. These differences are suggested to reflect variation in temperamental activity level as well as maturity of short term/working memory, inhibition and cognitive flexibility. PMID:24646045

  11. Affective decision-making on the Iowa gambling task in children and adolescents with fetal alcohol spectrum disorders.

    PubMed

    Kully-Martens, Katrina; Treit, Sarah; Pei, Jacqueline; Rasmussen, Carmen

    2013-02-01

    Individuals with fetal alcohol spectrum disorders (FASD) have difficulties with cognitive-based executive function (EF) tasks. The goal of the present study was to determine if children with FASD have impairments on the Iowa Gambling Task (IGT), which measures affective EF (i.e., decision-making and risk-taking). Individuals with FASD (n = 31) and healthy controls (n = 31), aged 8-17 completed the IGT. Children with FASD were significantly impaired on the IGT compared to controls. Over the course of the task, control scores improved, whereas children with FASD exhibited an overall decrease in scores. Scores increased significantly with age in the control group but did not differ significantly with age for FASD participants. Children with FASD exhibited decision-making and risk-taking impairments on a hot EF task. Children with FASD did not appear to learn from negative experiences and shift to making more positive decisions over time and their performance did not improve with age. The implications of poor task performance and a lack of age-related findings in children with FASD are discussed.

  12. Functional Task Test: 3. Skeletal Muscle Performance Adaptations to Space Flight

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Ryder, Jeffrey W.; Wickwire, P. J.; Buxton, R. E.; Bloomberg, J. J.; Ploutz-Snyder, L.

    2011-01-01

    The functional task test is a multi-disciplinary study investigating how space-flight induced changes to physiological systems impacts functional task performance. Impairment of neuromuscular function would be expected to negatively affect functional performance of crewmembers following exposure to microgravity. This presentation reports the results for muscle performance testing in crewmembers. Functional task performance will be presented in the abstract "Functional Task Test 1: sensory motor adaptations associated with postflight alternations in astronaut functional task performance." METHODS: Muscle performance measures were obtained in crewmembers before and after short-duration space flight aboard the Space Shuttle and long-duration International Space Station (ISS) missions. The battery of muscle performance tests included leg press and bench press measures of isometric force, isotonic power and total work. Knee extension was used for the measurement of central activation and maximal isometric force. Upper and lower body force steadiness control were measured on the bench press and knee extension machine, respectively. Tests were implemented 60 and 30 days before launch, on landing day (Shuttle crew only), and 6, 10 and 30 days after landing. Seven Space Shuttle crew and four ISS crew have completed the muscle performance testing to date. RESULTS: Preliminary results for Space Shuttle crew reveal significant reductions in the leg press performance metrics of maximal isometric force, power and total work on R+0 (p<0.05). Bench press total work was also significantly impaired, although maximal isometric force and power were not significantly affected. No changes were noted for measurements of central activation or force steadiness. Results for ISS crew were not analyzed due to the current small sample size. DISCUSSION: Significant reductions in lower body muscle performance metrics were observed in returning Shuttle crew and these adaptations are likely

  13. Human problem solving performance in a fault diagnosis task

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Rouse, W. B.

    1978-01-01

    It is proposed that humans in automated systems will be asked to assume the role of troubleshooter or problem solver and that the problems which they will be asked to solve in such systems will not be amenable to rote solution. The design of visual displays for problem solving in such situations is considered, and the results of two experimental investigations of human problem solving performance in the diagnosis of faults in graphically displayed network problems are discussed. The effects of problem size, forced-pacing, computer aiding, and training are considered. Results indicate that human performance deviates from optimality as problem size increases. Forced-pacing appears to cause the human to adopt fairly brute force strategies, as compared to those adopted in self-paced situations. Computer aiding substantially lessens the number of mistaken diagnoses by performing the bookkeeping portions of the task.

  14. High-definition television evaluation for remote handling task performance

    SciTech Connect

    Fujita, Y.; Omori, E.; Hayashi, S.; Draper, J.V.; Herndon, J.N.

    1986-01-01

    This paper describes experiments designed to evaluate the impact of HDTV on the performance of typical remote tasks. The experiments described in this paper compared the performance of four operators using HDTV with their performance while using other television systems. The experiments included four television systems: (1) high-definition color television, (2) high-definition monochromatic television, (3) standard-resolution monochromatic television, and (4) standard-resolution stereoscopic monochromatic television. The stereo system accomplished stereoscopy by displaying two cross-polarized images, one reflected by a half-silvered mirror and one seen through the mirror. Observers wore a pair of glasses with cross-polarized lenses so that the left eye received only the view from the left camera and the right eye received only the view from the right camera.

  15. High-definition television evaluation for remote handling task performance

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Fujita, Y.; Omori, E.; Hayashi, S.; Draper, J. V.; Herndon, J. N.

    Described are experiments designed to evaluate the impact of HDTV (High-Definition Television) on the performance of typical remote tasks. The experiments described in this paper compared the performance of four operators using HDTV with their performance while using other television systems. The experiments included four television systems: (1) high-definition color television, (2) high-definition monochromatic television, (3) standard-resolution monochromatic television, and (4) standard-resolution stereoscopic monochromatic television. The stereo system accomplished stereoscopy by displaying two cross-polarized images, one reflected by a half-silvered mirror and one seen through the mirror. Observers wore spectacles with cross-polarized lenses so that the left eye received only the view from the left camera and the right eye received only the view from the right camera.

  16. Helicopter Pilot Performance for Discrete-maneuver Flight Tasks

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Heffley, R. K.; Bourne, S. M.; Hindson, W. S.

    1984-01-01

    This paper describes a current study of several basic helicopter flight maneuvers. The data base consists of in-flight measurements from instrumented helicopters using experienced pilots. The analysis technique is simple enough to apply without automatic data processing, and the results can be used to build quantitative matah models of the flight task and some aspects of the pilot control strategy. In addition to describing the performance measurement technqiue, some results are presented which define the aggressiveness and amplitude of maneuvering for several lateral maneuvers including turns and sidesteps.

  17. Dual-task performance in older adults during discrete gait perturbation.

    PubMed

    Nnodim, Joseph O; Kim, Hogene; Ashton-Miller, James A

    2016-04-01

    The dual-task (motor and cognitive) performance of eight older adults (72.0 ± 6.4 years; 5 female; 3 male) was evaluated. Vocal choice reaction times (cognitive task) were measured at standstill as well as during unperturbed and perturbed gait (motor task). The perturbation was administered using customized shoes instrumented to lower a small (18.4 mm high) aluminum flap suddenly under the medial or lateral forefoot during a single swing phase of 12 of 30 gait trials. The ankle inverted or everted an average of 10 or 9 degrees, respectively, depending on the flap deployed. Medial and lateral perturbations were randomized between the left and right feet. The results show that vocal choice reaction time was significantly prolonged by gait, both perturbed (614.7 ± 80.2 ms) and unperturbed (529.9 ± 119.3 ms), compared to standstill (332.8 ± 76.5 ms; p = 0.0015). Further, the prolongation associated with gait perturbation was significant, compared to that with unperturbed gait (p = 0.016). The kinematics of the first post-perturbation (recovery) step, with or without concomitant vocal choice reaction task performance, was not significantly different from those of the average step during unperturbed gait. We conclude that in healthy older adults, the requirement to respond to a gait challenge resulted in deterioration in the performance of a concurrent cognitive task as indicated by significant prolongation of response time in the vocal choice reaction task. In contrast, performance of the motor task was not adversely affected.

  18. Gait in amyotrophic lateral sclerosis: Is gait pattern differently affected in spinal and bulbar onset of the disease during dual task walking?

    PubMed

    Radovanović, Sasa; Milićev, Milena; Perić, Stojan; Basta, Ivana; Kostić, Vladimir; Stević, Zorica

    2014-12-01

    Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) is characterized by weakness, fatigue, loss of balance and coordination. The purpose of the study was to examine gait in ALS patients. Gait was compared in ALS with spinal and bulbar onset, while performing dual mental and motor tasks. Dual-task walking was performed by 27 ALS patients, 13 with spinal- and 14 with bulbar-onset disease. Twenty-nine healthy subjects were used as a control group. The subjects performed a basic, simple walking task, dual-motor task, dual-mental task, and combined motor and mental tasks. Results showed that dual-task paradigm has an effect on gait in ALS patients. Gait was differently affected in spinal and bulbar onset of ALS by some of the given tasks. Mental tasks had a larger effect than motor tasks in all gait parameters. In conclusion, both ALS forms have impaired gait in dual tasks. Simple walk in patients with spinal onset shows higher variability of certain gait parameters compared to bulbar-onset patients and controls. Differences in gait could also indicate postural instability and possible falls in complex walking situations.

  19. Short-term visual deprivation reduces interference effects of task-irrelevant facial expressions on affective prosody judgments.

    PubMed

    Fengler, Ineke; Nava, Elena; Röder, Brigitte

    2015-01-01

    Several studies have suggested that neuroplasticity can be triggered by short-term visual deprivation in healthy adults. Specifically, these studies have provided evidence that visual deprivation reversibly affects basic perceptual abilities. The present study investigated the long-lasting effects of short-term visual deprivation on emotion perception. To this aim, we visually deprived a group of young healthy adults, age-matched with a group of non-deprived controls, for 3 h and tested them before and after visual deprivation (i.e., after 8 h on average and at 4 week follow-up) on an audio-visual (i.e., faces and voices) emotion discrimination task. To observe changes at the level of basic perceptual skills, we additionally employed a simple audio-visual (i.e., tone bursts and light flashes) discrimination task and two unimodal (one auditory and one visual) perceptual threshold measures. During the 3 h period, both groups performed a series of auditory tasks. To exclude the possibility that changes in emotion discrimination may emerge as a consequence of the exposure to auditory stimulation during the 3 h stay in the dark, we visually deprived an additional group of age-matched participants who concurrently performed unrelated (i.e., tactile) tasks to the later tested abilities. The two visually deprived groups showed enhanced affective prosodic discrimination abilities in the context of incongruent facial expressions following the period of visual deprivation; this effect was partially maintained until follow-up. By contrast, no changes were observed in affective facial expression discrimination and in the basic perception tasks in any group. These findings suggest that short-term visual deprivation per se triggers a reweighting of visual and auditory emotional cues, which seems to possibly prevail for longer durations.

  20. Effects of spatial congruency on saccade and visual discrimination performance in a dual-task paradigm.

    PubMed

    Moehler, Tobias; Fiehler, Katja

    2014-12-01

    The present study investigated the coupling of selection-for-perception and selection-for-action during saccadic eye movement planning in three dual-task experiments. We focused on the effects of spatial congruency of saccade target (ST) location and discrimination target (DT) location and the time between ST-cue and Go-signal (SOA) on saccadic eye movement performance. In two experiments, participants performed a visual discrimination task at a cued location while programming a saccadic eye movement to a cued location. In the third experiment, the discrimination task was not cued and appeared at a random location. Spatial congruency of ST-location and DT-location resulted in enhanced perceptual performance irrespective of SOA. Perceptual performance in spatially incongruent trials was above chance, but only when the DT-location was cued. Saccade accuracy and precision were also affected by spatial congruency showing superior performance when the ST- and DT-location coincided. Saccade latency was only affected by spatial congruency when the DT-cue was predictive of the ST-location. Moreover, saccades consistently curved away from the incongruent DT-locations. Importantly, the effects of spatial congruency on saccade parameters only occurred when the DT-location was cued; therefore, results from experiments 1 and 2 are due to the endogenous allocation of attention to the DT-location and not caused by the salience of the probe. The SOA affected saccade latency showing decreasing latencies with increasing SOA. In conclusion, our results demonstrate that visuospatial attention can be voluntarily distributed upon spatially distinct perceptual and motor goals in dual-task situations, resulting in a decline of visual discrimination and saccade performance.

  1. The Regulation of Task Performance: A Trans-Disciplinary Review

    PubMed Central

    Clark, Ian; Dumas, Guillaume

    2016-01-01

    Definitions of meta-cognition typically have two components: (1) knowledge about one's own cognitive functioning; and, (2) control over one's own cognitive activities. Since Flavell and his colleagues provided the empirical foundation on which to build studies of meta-cognition and the autonoetic (self) knowledge required for effective learning, the intervening years have seen the extensive dissemination of theoretical and empirical research on meta-cognition, which now encompasses a variety of issues and domains including educational psychology and neuroscience. Nevertheless, the psychological and neural underpinnings of meta-cognitive predictions and reflections that determine subsequent regulation of task performance remain ill understood. This article provides an outline of meta-cognition in the science of education with evidence drawn from neuroimaging, psycho-physiological, and psychological literature. We will rigorously explore research that addresses the pivotal role of the prefrontal cortex (PFC) in controlling the meta-cognitive processes that underpin the self-regulated learning (SRL) strategies learners employ to regulate task performance. The article delineates what those strategies are, and how the learning environment can facilitate or frustrate strategy use by influencing learners' self-efficacy. PMID:26779050

  2. The Regulation of Task Performance: A Trans-Disciplinary Review.

    PubMed

    Clark, Ian; Dumas, Guillaume

    2015-01-01

    Definitions of meta-cognition typically have two components: (1) knowledge about one's own cognitive functioning; and, (2) control over one's own cognitive activities. Since Flavell and his colleagues provided the empirical foundation on which to build studies of meta-cognition and the autonoetic (self) knowledge required for effective learning, the intervening years have seen the extensive dissemination of theoretical and empirical research on meta-cognition, which now encompasses a variety of issues and domains including educational psychology and neuroscience. Nevertheless, the psychological and neural underpinnings of meta-cognitive predictions and reflections that determine subsequent regulation of task performance remain ill understood. This article provides an outline of meta-cognition in the science of education with evidence drawn from neuroimaging, psycho-physiological, and psychological literature. We will rigorously explore research that addresses the pivotal role of the prefrontal cortex (PFC) in controlling the meta-cognitive processes that underpin the self-regulated learning (SRL) strategies learners employ to regulate task performance. The article delineates what those strategies are, and how the learning environment can facilitate or frustrate strategy use by influencing learners' self-efficacy. PMID:26779050

  3. Task Performance and Meta-Cognitive Outcomes When Using Activity Workstations and Traditional Desks

    PubMed Central

    Pilcher, June J.; Baker, Victoria C.

    2016-01-01

    The purpose of the current study is to compare the effects of light physical activity to sedentary behavior on cognitive task performance and meta-cognitive responses. Thirty-eight undergraduate students participated in the study. The participants used a stationary bicycle with a desk top and a traditional desk while completing two complex cognitive tasks and measures of affect, motivation, morale, and engagement. The participants pedaled the stationary bicycle at a slow pace (similar in exertion to a normal walking pace) while working. The results indicated that cognitive task performance did not change between the two workstations. However, positive affect, motivation, and morale improved when using the stationary bicycle. These results suggest that activity workstations could be implemented in the work place and in educational settings to help decrease sedentary behavior without negatively affecting performance. Furthermore, individuals could experience a positive emotional response when working on activity workstations which in turn could help encourage individuals to choose to be more physical active during daily activities. PMID:27445921

  4. Task Performance and Meta-Cognitive Outcomes When Using Activity Workstations and Traditional Desks.

    PubMed

    Pilcher, June J; Baker, Victoria C

    2016-01-01

    The purpose of the current study is to compare the effects of light physical activity to sedentary behavior on cognitive task performance and meta-cognitive responses. Thirty-eight undergraduate students participated in the study. The participants used a stationary bicycle with a desk top and a traditional desk while completing two complex cognitive tasks and measures of affect, motivation, morale, and engagement. The participants pedaled the stationary bicycle at a slow pace (similar in exertion to a normal walking pace) while working. The results indicated that cognitive task performance did not change between the two workstations. However, positive affect, motivation, and morale improved when using the stationary bicycle. These results suggest that activity workstations could be implemented in the work place and in educational settings to help decrease sedentary behavior without negatively affecting performance. Furthermore, individuals could experience a positive emotional response when working on activity workstations which in turn could help encourage individuals to choose to be more physical active during daily activities. PMID:27445921

  5. Factors affecting the process performance of biofiltration

    SciTech Connect

    Kopchynski, D.M.; Farmer, R.W.; Maier, W.J.

    1996-11-01

    Biofiltration is an emerging biological treatment technology for the removal of airborne VOCs from industrial process waste streams. Removal of air-phase VOCs by biofiltration is accomplished by contacting a process airstream with an active microbial biofilm attached to a solid phase packing. VOCs that partition into the biofilm are aerobically oxidized to the endproducts of water, carbon dioxide and salts. A multiple reactor biofiltration pilot plant test program has been in progress at the University of Minnesota Environmental Engineering Laboratories since 1992. The primary goal of the program is to study factors that affect biofiltration process performance. Initial results of this test program were reported in a previous conference paper and master`s thesis. This paper presents the results of more recent studies that focus on the effects of: (1) biofilm accumulation (which in turn causes a decrease in biofilter bed porosity and packing bed surface area), (2) rates of nutrient addition, and (3) chemical properties of the target contaminant, on biofiltration removal performance. Removal performance was evaluated by determining biofilter removal capacities and efficiencies for various substrate feeds. The performance parameters were measured under constant contaminant inlet concentrations and under constant temperature. Three VOCs were selected for study and they are: MEK, (methyl ethyl ketone), xylene, and hexane. MEK, xylene, and hexane were chosen because they are representative of widely used industrial solvents and they have significantly different Henry`s law constants relative to each other (the MEK value < Xylene value < Hexane value). Henry`s law constants quantify the partitioning of a chemical between the air and water-biofilm phase and therefore can be used to correlate the effect of chemical properties on biofilter removal capacities. This paper also introduces a new model for the biofiltration process.

  6. 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:…

  7. Counting-On, Trading and Partitioning: Effects of Training and Prior Knowledge on Performance on Base-10 Tasks

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Saxton, Matthew; Cakir, Kadir

    2006-01-01

    Factors affecting performance on base-10 tasks were investigated in a series of four studies with a total of 453 children aged 5-7 years. Training in counting-on was found to enhance child performance on base-10 tasks (Studies 2, 3, and 4), while prior knowledge of counting-on (Study 1), trading (Studies 1 and 3), and partitioning (Studies 1 and…

  8. Testing the embodied account of object naming: a concurrent motor task affects naming artifacts and animals.

    PubMed

    Matheson, Heath E; White, Nicole; McMullen, Patricia A

    2014-01-01

    Embodied theories of object representation propose that the same neural networks are involved in encoding and retrieving object knowledge. In the present study, we investigated whether motor programs play a causal role in the retrieval of object names. Participants performed an object-naming task while squeezing a sponge with either their right or left hand. The objects were artifacts (e.g. hammer) or animals (e.g. giraffe) and were presented in an orientation that favored a grasp or not. We hypothesized that, if activation of motor programs is necessary to retrieve object knowledge, then concurrent motor activity would interfere with naming manipulable artifacts but not non-manipulable animals. In Experiment 1, we observed naming interference for all objects oriented towards the occupied hand. In Experiment 2, we presented the objects in more 'canonical orientations'. Participants named all objects more quickly when they were oriented towards the occupied hand. Together, these interference/facilitation effects suggest that concurrent motor activity affects naming for both categories. These results also suggest that picture-plane orientation interacts with an attentional bias that is elicited by the objects and their relationship to the occupied hand. These results may be more parsimoniously accounted for by a domain-general attentional effect, constraining the embodied theory of object representations. We suggest that researchers should scrutinize attentional accounts of other embodied cognitive effects.

  9. Testing the embodied account of object naming: a concurrent motor task affects naming artifacts and animals.

    PubMed

    Matheson, Heath E; White, Nicole; McMullen, Patricia A

    2014-01-01

    Embodied theories of object representation propose that the same neural networks are involved in encoding and retrieving object knowledge. In the present study, we investigated whether motor programs play a causal role in the retrieval of object names. Participants performed an object-naming task while squeezing a sponge with either their right or left hand. The objects were artifacts (e.g. hammer) or animals (e.g. giraffe) and were presented in an orientation that favored a grasp or not. We hypothesized that, if activation of motor programs is necessary to retrieve object knowledge, then concurrent motor activity would interfere with naming manipulable artifacts but not non-manipulable animals. In Experiment 1, we observed naming interference for all objects oriented towards the occupied hand. In Experiment 2, we presented the objects in more 'canonical orientations'. Participants named all objects more quickly when they were oriented towards the occupied hand. Together, these interference/facilitation effects suggest that concurrent motor activity affects naming for both categories. These results also suggest that picture-plane orientation interacts with an attentional bias that is elicited by the objects and their relationship to the occupied hand. These results may be more parsimoniously accounted for by a domain-general attentional effect, constraining the embodied theory of object representations. We suggest that researchers should scrutinize attentional accounts of other embodied cognitive effects. PMID:24291119

  10. The effect of age on postural and cognitive task performance while using vibrotactile feedback

    PubMed Central

    Whitney, Susan L.; Loughlin, Patrick J.; Furman, Joseph M.; Redfern, Mark S.; Sienko, Kathleen H.; Sparto, Patrick J.

    2015-01-01

    Vibrotactile feedback (VTF) has been shown to improve balance performance in healthy people and people with vestibular disorders in a single-task experimental condition. It is unclear how age-related changes in balance affect the ability to use VTF and if there are different attentional requirements for old and young adults when using VTF. Twenty younger and 20 older subjects participated in this two-visit study to examine the effect of age, VTF, sensory condition, cognitive task, duration of time, and visit on postural and cognitive performance. Postural performance outcome measures included root mean square of center of pressure (COP) and trunk tilt, and cognitive performance was assessed using the reaction time (RT) from an auditory choice RT task. The results showed that compared with younger adults, older adults had an increase in COP in fixed platform conditions when using VTF, although they were able to reduce COP during sway-referenced platform conditions. Older adults also did not benefit fully from using VTF in their first session. The RTs for the secondary cognitive tasks increased significantly while using the VTF in both younger and older adults. Older adults had a larger increase compared with younger adults, suggesting that greater attentional demands were required in older adults when using VTF information. Future training protocols for VTF should take into consideration the effect of aging. PMID:25589585

  11. Nogo Receptor 1 Limits Tactile Task Performance Independent of Basal Anatomical Plasticity

    PubMed Central

    Kast, Ryan J.; Chapman, Katherine S.; Dorton, Hilary M.; Stephany, Céleste-Élise; Arnett, Megan T.; Herman, David H.; McGee, Aaron W.

    2014-01-01

    The genes that govern how experience refines neural circuitry and alters synaptic structural plasticity are poorly understood. The nogo-66 receptor 1 gene (ngr1) is one candidate that may restrict the rate of learning as well as basal anatomical plasticity in adult cerebral cortex. To investigate if ngr1 limits the rate of learning we tested adult ngr1 null mice on a tactile learning task. Ngr1 mutants display greater overall performance despite a normal rate of improvement on the gap-cross assay, a whisker-dependent learning paradigm. To determine if ngr1 restricts basal anatomical plasticity in the associated sensory cortex, we repeatedly imaged dendritic spines and axonal varicosities of both constitutive and conditional adult ngr1 mutant mice in somatosensory barrel cortex for two weeks through cranial windows with two-photon chronic in vivo imaging. Neither constant nor acute deletion of ngr1 affected turnover or stability of dendritic spines or axonal boutons. The improved performance on the gap-cross task is not attributable to greater motor coordination, as ngr1 mutant mice possess a mild deficit in overall performance and a normal learning rate on the rotarod, a motor task. Mice lacking ngr1 also exhibit normal induction of tone-associated fear conditioning yet accelerated fear extinction and impaired consolidation. Thus, ngr1 alters tactile and motor task performance but does not appear to limit the rate of tactile or motor learning, nor determine the low set point for synaptic turnover in sensory cortex. PMID:25386856

  12. The conflict adaptation is affected by attentional strategies: evidence from the arrow flanker task.

    PubMed

    Chen, Jia; Li, Chang; He, ChunHong; Chen, AnTao

    2009-10-01

    Recently, several studies have considered factors affecting the occurrence of congruency sequence effect (CSE) in the arrow flanker task. In the present study, the influence of the following factors was examined: the presentation of a fixation and the intertrial interval (ITI) were considered. Results of the study showed that the CSE was significant when there was no fixation and when the ITI was long for response repetitions and response changes, but disappeared for response change trials in other conditions. These results showed that, even in the arrow flanker task, the conflict adaptation effect did contribute to the CSE. The current results suggested that the conflict adaptation effect in the arrow flanker task was based on the appropriate application of attention strategies.

  13. 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…

  14. Musical Training, Bilingualism, and Executive Function: A Closer Look at Task Switching and Dual-Task Performance

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Moradzadeh, Linda; Blumenthal, Galit; Wiseheart, Melody

    2015-01-01

    This study investigated whether musical training and bilingualism are associated with enhancements in specific components of executive function, namely, task switching and dual-task performance. Participants (n = 153) belonging to one of four groups (monolingual musician, bilingual musician, bilingual non-musician, or monolingual non-musician)…

  15. Upper limb performance and the structuring of joint movement in teenagers with cerebral palsy: the reciprocal role of task demands and action capabilities.

    PubMed

    Figueiredo, Priscilla Rezende Pereira; Silva, Paula Lanna; Avelar, Bruna Silva; da Fonseca, Sérgio Teixeira; Bootsma, Reinoud J; Mancini, Marisa Cotta

    2015-04-01

    Individuals with unilateral cerebral palsy (CP) demonstrate reduced performance in upper limb tasks compared to typically developing (TD) peers. We examined whether task conditions modify differences between teenagers with and without CP during a reciprocal aiming task. Twenty teenagers (nine CP and 11 TD) moved a pointer between two targets as fast as possible without missing a target. Task conditions were manipulated by changing the targets' size, by modifying the inertial properties of the pointer and by varying the upper limb used to perform the task (preferred/non-affected and non-preferred/affected upper limbs). While compared to TD peers, CP teenagers exhibited lower performance (longer movement times). Such differences were attenuated when the task was performed with the preferred upper limb and when accuracy requirements were less stringent. CP teenagers were not differentially affected by the pointer inertia manipulation. Task conditions not only affected performance but also joint kinematics. CP teenagers revealed less movement at the elbow and more movement at the shoulder when performing the task with their less skilled upper limb. However, both CP and TD teenagers demonstrated a larger contribution of trunk movement when facing more challenging task conditions. The overall pattern of results indicated that the joint kinematics employed by individuals with unilateral CP constituted adaptive responses to task requirements. Thus, the explanation of the effects of unilateral CP on upper limb behavior needs to go beyond a context-indifferent manifestation of the brain injury to include the interaction between task demands and action capabilities.

  16. Upper limb performance and the structuring of joint movement in teenagers with cerebral palsy: the reciprocal role of task demands and action capabilities.

    PubMed

    Figueiredo, Priscilla Rezende Pereira; Silva, Paula Lanna; Avelar, Bruna Silva; da Fonseca, Sérgio Teixeira; Bootsma, Reinoud J; Mancini, Marisa Cotta

    2015-04-01

    Individuals with unilateral cerebral palsy (CP) demonstrate reduced performance in upper limb tasks compared to typically developing (TD) peers. We examined whether task conditions modify differences between teenagers with and without CP during a reciprocal aiming task. Twenty teenagers (nine CP and 11 TD) moved a pointer between two targets as fast as possible without missing a target. Task conditions were manipulated by changing the targets' size, by modifying the inertial properties of the pointer and by varying the upper limb used to perform the task (preferred/non-affected and non-preferred/affected upper limbs). While compared to TD peers, CP teenagers exhibited lower performance (longer movement times). Such differences were attenuated when the task was performed with the preferred upper limb and when accuracy requirements were less stringent. CP teenagers were not differentially affected by the pointer inertia manipulation. Task conditions not only affected performance but also joint kinematics. CP teenagers revealed less movement at the elbow and more movement at the shoulder when performing the task with their less skilled upper limb. However, both CP and TD teenagers demonstrated a larger contribution of trunk movement when facing more challenging task conditions. The overall pattern of results indicated that the joint kinematics employed by individuals with unilateral CP constituted adaptive responses to task requirements. Thus, the explanation of the effects of unilateral CP on upper limb behavior needs to go beyond a context-indifferent manifestation of the brain injury to include the interaction between task demands and action capabilities. PMID:25579662

  17. Boon and Bane of Being Sure: The Effect of Performance Certainty and Expectancy on Task Performance

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Schindler, Simon; Reinhard, Marc-André; Dickhäuser, Oliver

    2016-01-01

    Previous research has suggested certainty to be an important factor when investigating effects of level of expectancies on future behavior. With the present study, we addressed the interplay of expectancy certainty and level of expectancies regarding task performance. We assumed that certain performance expectancies provide a better basis for the…

  18. Effect of temperature on task performance in officeenvironment

    SciTech Connect

    Seppanen, Olli; Fisk, William J.; Lei, Q.H.

    2006-07-01

    Indoor temperature is one of the fundamental characteristics of the indoor environment. It can be controlled with a degree of accuracy dependent on the building and its HVAC system. The indoor temperature affects several human responses, including thermal comfort, perceived air quality, sick building syndrome symptoms and performance at work. In this study, we focused on the effects of temperature on performance at office work. We included those studies that had used objective indicators of performance that are likely to be relevant in office type work, such as text processing, simple calculations (addition, multiplication), length of telephone customer service time, and total handling time per customer for call-center workers. We excluded data from studies of industrial work performance. We calculated from all studies the percentage of performance change per degree increase in temperature, and statistically analyzed measured work performance with temperature. The results show that performance increases with temperature up to 21-22 C, and decreases with temperature above 23-24 C. The highest productivity is at temperature of around 22 C. For example, at the temperature of 30 C, the performance is only 91.1% of the maximum i.e. the reduction in performance is 8.9%

  19. Performance of healthy participants on the Iowa Gambling Task.

    PubMed

    Steingroever, Helen; Wetzels, Ruud; Horstmann, Annette; Neumann, Jane; Wagenmakers, Eric-Jan

    2013-03-01

    The Iowa Gambling Task (IGT; Bechara, Damasio, Damasio, & Anderson, 1994) is often used to assess decision-making deficits in clinical populations. The interpretation of the results hinges on 3 key assumptions: (a) healthy participants learn to prefer the good options over the bad options; (b) healthy participants show homogeneous choice behavior; and (c) healthy participants first explore the different options and then exploit the most profitable ones. Here we test these assumptions using 2 extensive literature reviews and analysis of 8 data sets. The results show that all 3 assumptions may be invalid; that is, (a) healthy participants often prefer decks with infrequent losses; (b) healthy participants show idiosyncratic choice behavior; and (c) healthy participants do not show a systematic decrease in the number of switches across trials. Our findings question the prevailing interpretation of IGT data and suggest that, in future applications of the IGT, key assumptions about performance of healthy participants warrant close scrutiny.

  20. Instructional Cues Modify Performance on the Iowa Gambling Task

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Balodis, Iris M.; MacDonald, Tara K.; Olmstead, Mary C.

    2006-01-01

    The current study investigated whether acute alcohol intoxication produces impaired decision-making on tasks assessing ventromedial prefrontal (VMF) cortex functioning and impulsive responding. Participants completed the Iowa Gambling Task (IGT), a decision-making test targeting the VMF, and the Newman Perseveration Task (NT), a measure of…

  1. 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…

  2. A key role for experimental task performance: effects of math talent, gender and performance on the neural correlates of mental rotation.

    PubMed

    Hoppe, Christian; Fliessbach, Klaus; Stausberg, Sven; Stojanovic, Jelena; Trautner, Peter; Elger, Christian E; Weber, Bernd

    2012-02-01

    The neurophysiological mechanisms underlying superior cognitive performance are a research area of high interest. The majority of studies on the brain-performance relationship assessed the effects of capability-related group factors (e.g. talent, gender) on task-related brain activations while only few studies examined the effect of the inherent experimental task performance factor. In this functional MRI study, we combined both approaches and simultaneously assessed the effects of three relatively independent factors on the neurofunctional correlates of mental rotation in same-aged adolescents: math talent (gifted/controls: 17/17), gender (male/female: 16/18) and experimental task performance (median split on accuracy; high/low: 17/17). Better experimental task performance of mathematically gifted vs. control subjects and male vs. female subjects validated the selected paradigm. Activation of the inferior parietal lobule (IPL) was identified as a common effect of mathematical giftedness, gender and experimental task performance. However, multiple linear regression analyses (stepwise) indicated experimental task performance as the only predictor of parietal activations. In conclusion, increased activation of the IPL represents a positive neural correlate of mental rotation performance, irrespective of but consistent with the obtained neurocognitive and behavioral effects of math talent and gender. As experimental performance may strongly affect task-related activations this factor needs to be considered in capability-related group comparison studies on the brain-performance relationship.

  3. Effects of cues in a binary categorization task on dual-task performance, mental workload, and effort.

    PubMed

    Botzer, Assaf; Meyer, Joachim; Parmet, Yisrael

    2016-09-01

    Binary cues help operators perform binary categorization tasks, such as monitoring for system failures. They may also allow them to attend to other tasks they concurrently perform. If the time saved by using cues is allocated to other concurrent tasks, users' overall effort may remain unchanged. In 2 experiments, participants performed a simulated quality control task, together with a tracking task. In half the experimental blocks cues were available, and participants could use them in their decisions about the quality of products (intact or faulty). In Experiment 1, the difficulty of tracking was constant, while in Experiment 2, tracking difficulty differed in the 2 halves of the experiment. In both experiments, participants reported on the NASA Task Load Index that cues improved their performance and reduced their frustration. Consequently, their overall score on mental workload (MWL) was lower with cues. They also reported, however, that cues did not reduce their effort. We conclude that cues and other forms of automation may support task performance and reduce overall MWL, but this will not necessarily mean that users will work less hard. Thus, effort and overall MWL should be evaluated separately, if one wants to obtain a full picture of the effects of automation. (PsycINFO Database Record PMID:27505049

  4. Characterizing “fibrofog”: Subjective appraisal, objective performance, and task-related brain activity during a working memory task

    PubMed Central

    Walitt, Brian; Čeko, Marta; Khatiwada, Manish; Gracely, John L.; Rayhan, Rakib; VanMeter, John W.; Gracely, Richard H.

    2016-01-01

    The subjective experience of cognitive dysfunction (“fibrofog”) is common in fibromyalgia. This study investigated the relation between subjective appraisal of cognitive function, objective cognitive task performance, and brain activity during a cognitive task using functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI). Sixteen fibromyalgia patients and 13 healthy pain-free controls completed a battery of questionnaires, including the Multiple Ability Self-Report Questionnaire (MASQ), a measure of self-perceived cognitive difficulties. Participants were evaluated for working memory performance using a modified N-back working memory task while undergoing Blood Oxygen Level Dependent (BOLD) fMRI measurements. Fibromyalgia patients and controls did not differ in working memory performance. Subjective appraisal of cognitive function was associated with better performance (accuracy) on the working memory task in healthy controls but not in fibromyalgia patients. In fibromyalgia patients, increased perceived cognitive difficulty was positively correlated with the severity of their symptoms. BOLD response during the working memory task did not differ between the groups. BOLD response correlated with task accuracy in control subjects but not in fibromyalgia patients. Increased subjective cognitive impairment correlated with decreased BOLD response in both groups but in different anatomic regions. In conclusion, “fibrofog” appears to be better characterized by subjective rather than objective impairment. Neurologic correlates of this subjective experience of impairment might be separate from those involved in the performance of cognitive tasks. PMID:26955513

  5. Effects of cues in a binary categorization task on dual-task performance, mental workload, and effort.

    PubMed

    Botzer, Assaf; Meyer, Joachim; Parmet, Yisrael

    2016-09-01

    Binary cues help operators perform binary categorization tasks, such as monitoring for system failures. They may also allow them to attend to other tasks they concurrently perform. If the time saved by using cues is allocated to other concurrent tasks, users' overall effort may remain unchanged. In 2 experiments, participants performed a simulated quality control task, together with a tracking task. In half the experimental blocks cues were available, and participants could use them in their decisions about the quality of products (intact or faulty). In Experiment 1, the difficulty of tracking was constant, while in Experiment 2, tracking difficulty differed in the 2 halves of the experiment. In both experiments, participants reported on the NASA Task Load Index that cues improved their performance and reduced their frustration. Consequently, their overall score on mental workload (MWL) was lower with cues. They also reported, however, that cues did not reduce their effort. We conclude that cues and other forms of automation may support task performance and reduce overall MWL, but this will not necessarily mean that users will work less hard. Thus, effort and overall MWL should be evaluated separately, if one wants to obtain a full picture of the effects of automation. (PsycINFO Database Record

  6. Alterations in cognitive performance during passive hyperthermia are task dependent

    PubMed Central

    Gaoua, Nadia; Racinais, Sebastien; Grantham, Justin; Massioui, Farid El

    2011-01-01

    The objectives of this study were to (1) assess the effect of passive heating upon attention and memory task performance, and (2) evaluate the effectiveness of the application of cold packs to the head on preserving these functions. Using a counterbalance design 16 subjects underwent three trials: a control (CON, 20°C, 40% rH), hot (HOT, 50°C, 50% rH) and hot with the head kept cool (HHC). In each condition, three attention tests and two memory tests were performed. Mean core, forehead and tympanic temperatures were all significantly higher (p< 0.05) during HOT (38.6° ±0.1°, 39.6° ±0.2° and 38.8°±0.1°C, respectively) and HHC (38°±0.2, 37.7°±0.3° and 37.7°C, respectively) than in CON (37.1°±0.6°, 33.3° ±0.2° and 35.9°±0.3°C, respectively). Results indicate that there was impairment in working memory with heat exposure (p < 0.05) without alteration in attentional processes. The regular application of cold packs only prevented the detrimental effect of hyperthermia on short-term memory. Our results show that impairments in cognitive function with passive hyperthermia and the beneficial effect of head cooling are task dependent and suggests that exposure to a hot environment is a competing variable to the cognitive processes. PMID:21070137

  7. ERP measures of math anxiety: how math anxiety affects working memory and mental calculation tasks?

    PubMed Central

    Klados, Manousos A.; Simos, Panagiotis; Micheloyannis, Sifis; Margulies, Daniel; Bamidis, Panagiotis D.

    2015-01-01

    There have been several attempts to account for the impact of Mathematical Anxiety (MA) on brain activity with variable results. The present study examines the effects of MA on ERP amplitude during performance of simple arithmetic calculations and working memory tasks. Data were obtained from 32 university students as they solved four types of arithmetic problems (one- and two-digit addition and multiplication) and a working memory task comprised of three levels of difficulty (1, 2, and 3-back task). Compared to the Low-MA group, High-MA individuals demonstrated reduced ERP amplitude at frontocentral (between 180–320 ms) and centroparietal locations (between 380–420 ms). These effects were independent of task difficulty/complexity, individual performance, and general state/trait anxiety levels. Results support the hypothesis that higher levels of self-reported MA are associated with lower cortical activation during the early stages of the processing of numeric stimuli in the context of cognitive tasks. PMID:26578912

  8. ERP measures of math anxiety: how math anxiety affects working memory and mental calculation tasks?

    PubMed

    Klados, Manousos A; Simos, Panagiotis; Micheloyannis, Sifis; Margulies, Daniel; Bamidis, Panagiotis D

    2015-01-01

    There have been several attempts to account for the impact of Mathematical Anxiety (MA) on brain activity with variable results. The present study examines the effects of MA on ERP amplitude during performance of simple arithmetic calculations and working memory tasks. Data were obtained from 32 university students as they solved four types of arithmetic problems (one- and two-digit addition and multiplication) and a working memory task comprised of three levels of difficulty (1, 2, and 3-back task). Compared to the Low-MA group, High-MA individuals demonstrated reduced ERP amplitude at frontocentral (between 180-320 ms) and centroparietal locations (between 380-420 ms). These effects were independent of task difficulty/complexity, individual performance, and general state/trait anxiety levels. Results support the hypothesis that higher levels of self-reported MA are associated with lower cortical activation during the early stages of the processing of numeric stimuli in the context of cognitive tasks. PMID:26578912

  9. Gender and Prior Science Achievement Affect Categorization on a Procedural Learning Task

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Hong, Jon-Chao; Lu, Chow-Chin; Wang, Jen-Lian; Liao, Shin; Wu, Ming-Ray; Hwang, Ming-Yueh; Lin, Pei-Hsin

    2013-01-01

    Categorization is one of the main mental processes by which perception and conception develop. Nevertheless, categorization receives little attention with the development of critical thinking in Taiwan elementary schools. Thus, the present study investigates the effect that individual differences have on performing categorization tasks.…

  10. How Stimulus and Task Complexity Affect Monitoring in High-Functioning Adults with Autism Spectrum Disorder

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Koolen, Sophieke; Vissers, Constance Th. W. M.; Egger, Jos I. M.; Verhoeven, Ludo

    2014-01-01

    The present study examined whether individuals with autism spectrum disorder (ASD) are able to update and monitor working memory representations of visual input, and whether performance is influenced by stimulus and task complexity. 15 high-functioning adults with ASD and 15 controls were asked to allocate either elements of abstract figures or…

  11. Trait Anxiety Modulates Brain Activity during Performance of Verbal Fluency Tasks

    PubMed Central

    Gawda, Barbara; Szepietowska, Ewa

    2016-01-01

    Trait anxiety is thought to be associated with pathological anxiety, and a risk factor for psychiatric disorders. The present study examines the brain mechanisms associated with trait anxiety during the performing of verbal fluency tasks. The aim is to show how trait anxiety modulates executive functions as measured by verbal fluency, and to explore the link between verbal fluency and anxiety due to the putative negative biases in high-anxious individuals. Seven tasks of verbal fluency were used: letter “k,” “f,” verbs, “animals,” “vehicles,” “joy,” and “fear.” The results of 35 subjects (whole sample), and 17 subjects (nine men, eight women) selected from the whole sample for the low/high-anxious groups on the basis of Trait Anxiety scores were analyzed. The subjects were healthy, Polish speaking, right-handed and aged from 20 to 35 years old. fMRI (whole-brain analysis with FWE corrections) was used to show the neural signals under active participation in verbal fluency tasks. The results confirm that trait anxiety slightly modulates neural activation during the performance of verbal fluency tasks, especially in the more difficult tasks. Significant differences were found in brain activation during the performance of more complex tasks between individuals with low anxiety and those with high anxiety. Greater activation in the right hemisphere, frontal gyri, and cerebellum was found in people with low anxiety. The results reflect better integration of cognitive and affective capacities in individuals with low anxiety. PMID:26903827

  12. How sleep deprivation affects psychological variables related to college students' cognitive performance.

    PubMed

    Pilcher, J J; Walters, A S

    1997-11-01

    The effects of sleep deprivation on cognitive performance psychological variables related to cognitive performance were studied in 44 college students. Participants completed the Watson-Glaser Critical Thinking Appraisal after either 24 hours of sleep deprivation or approximately 8 hours of sleep. After completing the cognitive task, the participants completed 2 questionnaires, one assessing self-reported effort, concentration, and estimated performance, the other assessing off-task cognitions. As expected, sleep-deprived participants performed significantly worse than the nondeprived participants on the cognitive task. However, the sleep-deprived participants rated their concentration and effort higher than the nondeprived participants did. In addition, the sleep-deprived participants rated their estimated performance significantly higher than the nondeprived participants did. The findings indicate that college students are not aware of the extent to which sleep deprivation negatively affects their ability to complete cognitive tasks. PMID:9394089

  13. [Psychological and stabilographic features in healthy persons performing dual tasks with different quality].

    PubMed

    2013-01-01

    The results of performance of 40 healthy volunteers (29.8 ± 2.47 y.o.) in four dual tasks that included postural balance task as a motor sub-task and calculation as a cognitive sub-task were compared to results of individual psychological assessment which measured working and spatial memory capacity, speed of attention switch etc. Performance of participants in dual tasks was not uniform. For each of four tasks four types of performance were observed. Those included decrease of performance in both or one task and increase of performance in both tasks. In one of the four dual tasks 30% of the group of participants performed in both components of dual task better then in separate motor and cognitive tasks. Better performance in this dual task correlated with higher speed of attention switch, higher estimates of spatial and working memory. Analysis of results of psychological and stabilografic investigations showed negative correlation between speed of sway of center of pressure (CoP) and speed of attention switch test, and also between amplitude of CoP sway along frontal axis and capacity of spatial and working memory. These correlations reflect involvement of cognitive resources in voluntary postural control and motor automatism in successful dual task performance. Selected variant of dual task could be used as an instrument of selection of individuals for activities related to high informational loads. PMID:25508959

  14. [Psychological and stabilographic features in healthy persons performing dual tasks with different quality].

    PubMed

    Zharikov, A V; Zhavoronkova, L A; Kuptsova, S B; Kushnir, E M; Kulikov, M A; Mikhalkova, A A

    2013-01-01

    The results of performance of 40 healthy volunteers (29.8 ± 2.47 y.o.) in four dual tasks that included postural balance task as a motor sub-task and calculation as a cognitive sub-task were compared to results of individual psychological assessment which measured working and spatial memory capacity, speed of attention switch etc. Performance of participants in dual tasks was not uniform. For each of four tasks four types of performance were observed. Those included decrease of performance in both or one task and increase of performance in both tasks. In one of the four dual tasks 30% of the group of participants performed in both components of dual task better then in separate motor and cognitive tasks. Better performance in this dual task correlated with higher speed of attention switch, higher estimates of spatial and working memory. Analysis of results of psychological and stabilografic investigations showed negative correlation between speed of sway of center of pressure (CoP) and speed of attention switch test, and also between amplitude of CoP sway along frontal axis and capacity of spatial and working memory. These correlations reflect involvement of cognitive resources in voluntary postural control and motor automatism in successful dual task performance. Selected variant of dual task could be used as an instrument of selection of individuals for activities related to high informational loads. PMID:25486828

  15. Simulated Firefighting Task Performance and Physiology Under Very Hot Conditions

    PubMed Central

    Larsen, Brianna; Snow, Rod; Williams-Bell, Michael; Aisbett, Brad

    2015-01-01

    Purpose: To assess the impact of very hot (45°C) conditions on the performance of, and physiological responses to, a simulated firefighting manual-handling task compared to the same work in a temperate environment (18°C). Methods: Ten male volunteer firefighters performed a 3-h protocol in both 18°C (CON) and 45°C (VH). Participants intermittently performed 12 × 1-min bouts of raking, 6 × 8-min bouts of low-intensity stepping, and 6 × 20-min rest periods. The area cleared during the raking task determined work performance. Core temperature, skin temperature, and heart rate were measured continuously. Participants also periodically rated their perceived exertion (RPE) and thermal sensation. Firefighters consumed water ad libitum. Urine specific gravity (USG) and changes in body mass determined hydration status. Results: Firefighters raked 19% less debris during the VH condition. Core and skin temperature were 0.99 ± 0.20 and 5.45 ± 0.53°C higher, respectively, during the VH trial, and heart rate was 14–36 beats.min−1 higher in the VH trial. Firefighters consumed 2950 ± 1034 mL of water in the VH condition, compared to 1290 ± 525 in the CON trial. Sweat losses were higher in the VH (1886 ± 474 mL) compared to the CON trial (462 ± 392 mL), though both groups were hydrated upon protocol completion (USG < 1.020). Participants' average RPE was higher in the VH (15.6 ± 0.9) compared to the CON trial (12.6 ± 0.9). Similarly, the firefighers' thermal sensation scores were significantly higher in the VH (6.4 ± 0.5) compared to the CON trial (4.4 ± 0.4). Conclusions: Despite the decreased work output and aggressive fluid replacement observed in the VH trial, firefighters' experienced increases in thermal stress, and exertion. Fire agencies should prioritize the health and safety of fire personnel in very hot temperatures, and consider the impact of reduced productivity on fire suppression efforts. PMID:26617527

  16. Task Complexity, Student Perceptions of Vocabulary Learning in EFL, and Task Performance

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Wu, Xiaoli; Lowyck, Joost; Sercu, Lies; Elen, Jan

    2013-01-01

    Background: The study deepened our understanding of how students' self-ef?cacy beliefs contribute to the context of teaching English as a foreign language in the framework of cognitive mediational paradigm at a ?ne-tuned task-speci?c level. Aim: The aim was to examine the relationship among task complexity, self-ef?cacy beliefs, domain-related…

  17. One Night of Sleep Deprivation Affects Reaction Time, but Not Interference or Facilitation in a Stroop Task

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Cain, Sean W.; Silva, Edward J.; Chang, Anne-Marie; Ronda, Joseph M.; Duffy, Jeanne F.

    2011-01-01

    The Stroop color-naming task is one of the most widely studied tasks involving the inhibition of a prepotent response, regarded as an executive function. Several studies have examined performance on versions of the Stroop task under conditions of acute sleep deprivation. Though these studies revealed effects on Stroop performance, the results…

  18. Self-regulation, engagement, motivation, and performance in a simulated quality control task.

    PubMed

    Schell, Kraig L; Melton, Ellen C; Woodruff, Abbie; Corbin, G Brandon

    2004-06-01

    This study examined how self-regulation and task-related motivation were related to the accuracy of error detection and task engagement in a simulated quality control task that mimicked prescription-checking behavior in a pharmacy. Ninety-one participants completed measures of self-regulation, task engagement, and task-related motivation and then checked 80 simulated scripts with inserted error ratios ranging from 26% to 38%. Motivation and task engagement were assessed at the beginning of the task, the midpoint of the task, and after the task was over. Performance was measured in terms of sensitivity (error detections) and specificity (false alarm responses). Results indicated that motivation was correlated with higher sensitivity, while self-regulation was correlated with lower specificity. Higher mid-task motivation and higher self-regulation were also predictive of greater task engagement at the midpoint of the task only. Results are discussed and future research directions are proposed.

  19. Context-Sensitive Adjustment of Cognitive Control in Dual-Task Performance

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Fischer, Rico; Gottschalk, Caroline; Dreisbach, Gesine

    2014-01-01

    Performing 2 highly similar tasks at the same time requires an adaptive regulation of cognitive control to shield prioritized primary task processing from between-task (cross-talk) interference caused by secondary task processing. In the present study, the authors investigated how implicitly and explicitly delivered information promotes the…

  20. Summary document of tasks performed on the Shuttle-C/NLS contract

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    1993-01-01

    During FY92, USBI performed many programmatic related tasks. These programmatic tasks have been categorized as follows: (1) acquisition; (2) project engineering/program planning; and (3) cost. The reports associated with these tasks follow in paragraphs 1.1.1 through 1.3.3. Proceeding each task report is a brief description of the contents contained within.

  1. Exploring the Effect of Red and Blue on Cognitive Task Performances.

    PubMed

    Xia, Tiansheng; Song, Lu; Wang, Ting T; Tan, Ling; Mo, Lei

    2016-01-01

    Previous studies on the effect of color on cognitive task performances and have led to two different views. Some researchers think that the influence of red and blue on cognitive tasks is modulated by the difficulty of the task, and other researchers suggest that the influence mainly depends on the type of task. The current study combined these factors to investigate the effect of color on cognitive task performance. In Experiment 1, we manipulated the difficulty of the task to investigate the effect of red and blue on detail-oriented task performance (the proofreading task), whereas in Experiment 2 we manipulated task difficulty to explore the effect of red and blue on creative task performance (the Remote Associates Test). The results showed that red enhanced the performance on a simple detail-oriented task. However, blue improved the performance on a difficult detail-oriented task as well as on both simple and difficult creative tasks. The results of the current study indicate that the type and difficulty of the task together modulate the effect of color on cognitive performances. PMID:27303343

  2. Exploring the Effect of Red and Blue on Cognitive Task Performances

    PubMed Central

    Xia, Tiansheng; Song, Lu; Wang, Ting T.; Tan, Ling; Mo, Lei

    2016-01-01

    Previous studies on the effect of color on cognitive task performances and have led to two different views. Some researchers think that the influence of red and blue on cognitive tasks is modulated by the difficulty of the task, and other researchers suggest that the influence mainly depends on the type of task. The current study combined these factors to investigate the effect of color on cognitive task performance. In Experiment 1, we manipulated the difficulty of the task to investigate the effect of red and blue on detail-oriented task performance (the proofreading task), whereas in Experiment 2 we manipulated task difficulty to explore the effect of red and blue on creative task performance (the Remote Associates Test). The results showed that red enhanced the performance on a simple detail-oriented task. However, blue improved the performance on a difficult detail-oriented task as well as on both simple and difficult creative tasks. The results of the current study indicate that the type and difficulty of the task together modulate the effect of color on cognitive performances. PMID:27303343

  3. Transformation of OODT CAS to Perform Larger Tasks

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Mattmann, Chris; Freeborn, Dana; Crichton, Daniel; Hughes, John; Ramirez, Paul; Hardman, Sean; Woollard, David; Kelly, Sean

    2008-01-01

    A computer program denoted OODT CAS has been transformed to enable performance of larger tasks that involve greatly increased data volumes and increasingly intensive processing of data on heterogeneous, geographically dispersed computers. Prior to the transformation, OODT CAS (also alternatively denoted, simply, 'CAS') [wherein 'OODT' signifies 'Object-Oriented Data Technology' and 'CAS' signifies 'Catalog and Archive Service'] was a proven software component used to manage scientific data from spaceflight missions. In the transformation, CAS was split into two separate components representing its canonical capabilities: file management and workflow management. In addition, CAS was augmented by addition of a resource-management component. This third component enables CAS to manage heterogeneous computing by use of diverse resources, including high-performance clusters of computers, commodity computing hardware, and grid computing infrastructures. CAS is now more easily maintainable, evolvable, and reusable. These components can be used separately or, taking advantage of synergies, can be used together. Other elements of the transformation included addition of a separate Web presentation layer that supports distribution of data products via Really Simple Syndication (RSS) feeds, and provision for full Resource Description Framework (RDF) exports of metadata.

  4. Young L2 learners' performance on a novel morpheme task.

    PubMed

    Kohnert, Kathryn; Danahy, Kerry

    2007-07-01

    The teaching of an invented language rule has been proposed as a possible non-biased, language-independent assessment technique useful in differentiating young L2 learners with specific language impairment from their typically developing peers. The current study explores these notions by testing typically developing sequential bilingual children's ability to learn an invented language rule in either L1 (Spanish) or L2 (English). Participants were 20 children, age 3:6-5:8, who attended a Head Start programme. For all children, Spanish was the primary language spoken in the home and English was the primary language of instruction. Children were randomly assigned two groups. Group L1 was taught the novel language rule in Spanish; Group L2 was taught the novel language rule in English. Performance was better for the L1 group than for the L2 group. Moreover, not all of these typical language learners were able to learn the new rule, even in their strongest language. These findings suggest that even for typically developing children, specific language proficiency as well as individual differences are closely linked to performance on this novel morpheme learning task.

  5. Rate of learning and asymptotic performance in an automatization task and the relation to reading.

    PubMed

    Hecht, Rozalia; Crewther, David; Crewther, Sheila

    2004-12-01

    In the present study, direct evidence was sought linking cognitive automatic processing with reading in the general adult population. Reading speed on single-task performance and dual-task performance were compared. A total of 18 adults without dyslexia participated (7 men and 11 women, age M=25.3 yr., SD=2.7). Participants initially were trained in single-task mode on two types of tasks. The first was a central alphanumeric equation task (true or false), which comprised 3 subtests of increasing difficulty, ranging from an easily automated task to a varied and unpredictable mathematical operation. The second task was a peripheral pattern subitization task for which stimulus exposure time was related to performance. Finally, participants received dual-task training, which required simultaneous processing of both tasks. Slower reading speed was significantly related to rate of learning and speed of performance on predictable alphanumeric operations in dual-task conditions. There was no effect of reading speed on performance in the varied alphanumeric task. Faster readers were no better than slower readers on the pattern-subitization task. These findings suggest that faster readers automatized the predictable alphanumeric task more rapidly than slower readers and hence were better able to cope with the dual-task condition.

  6. Examining age differences in performance of a complex information search and retrieval task.

    PubMed

    Czaja, S J; Sharit, J; Ownby, R; Roth, D L; Nair, S

    2001-12-01

    This study examined age differences in performance of a complex information search and retrieval task by using a simulated real-world task typical of those performed by customer service representatives. The study also investigated the influence of task experience and the relationships between cognitive abilities and task performance. One hundred seventeen participants from 3 age groups, younger (20-39 years). middle-aged (40-59 years), and older (60-75 years), performed the task for 3 days. Significant age differences were found for all measures of task performance with the exception of navigational efficiency and number of problems correctly navigated per attempt. There were also effects of task experience. The findings also indicated significant direct and indirect relations between component cognitive abilities and task performance.

  7. Examining age differences in performance of a complex information search and retrieval task.

    PubMed

    Czaja, S J; Sharit, J; Ownby, R; Roth, D L; Nair, S

    2001-12-01

    This study examined age differences in performance of a complex information search and retrieval task by using a simulated real-world task typical of those performed by customer service representatives. The study also investigated the influence of task experience and the relationships between cognitive abilities and task performance. One hundred seventeen participants from 3 age groups, younger (20-39 years). middle-aged (40-59 years), and older (60-75 years), performed the task for 3 days. Significant age differences were found for all measures of task performance with the exception of navigational efficiency and number of problems correctly navigated per attempt. There were also effects of task experience. The findings also indicated significant direct and indirect relations between component cognitive abilities and task performance. PMID:11766912

  8. Grip type and task goal modify reach-to-grasp performance in post-stroke hemiparesis

    PubMed Central

    Schaefer, Sydney Y.; DeJong, Stacey L.; Cherry, Kendra M.; Lang, Catherine E.

    2011-01-01

    This study investigated whether grip type and/or task goal influenced reaching and grasping performance in post-stroke hemiparesis. Sixteen adults with post-stroke hemiparesis and twelve healthy adults reached to and grasped a cylindrical object using one of two grip types (3-finger or palmar) to achieve one of two task goals (hold or lift). Performance of the stroke group was characteristic of hemiparetic limb movement during reach-to-grasp, with more curved handpaths and slower velocities compared to the control group. These effects were present regardless of grip type or task goal. Other measures of reaching (reach time and reach velocity at object contact) and grasping (peak thumb-index finger aperture during the reach and peak grip force during the grasp) were differentially affected by grip type, task goal, or both, despite the presence of hemiparesis, providing new evidence that changes in motor patterns after stroke may occur to compensate for stroke-related motor impairment. PMID:22357103

  9. Memory for emotional words: The role of semantic relatedness, encoding task and affective valence.

    PubMed

    Ferré, Pilar; Fraga, Isabel; Comesaña, Montserrat; Sánchez-Casas, Rosa

    2015-01-01

    Emotional stimuli have been repeatedly demonstrated to be better remembered than neutral ones. The aim of the present study was to test whether this advantage in memory is mainly produced by the affective content of the stimuli or it can be rather accounted for by factors such as semantic relatedness or type of encoding task. The valence of the stimuli (positive, negative and neutral words that could be either semantically related or unrelated) as well as the type of encoding task (focused on either familiarity or emotionality) was manipulated. The results revealed an advantage in memory for emotional words (either positive or negative) regardless of semantic relatedness. Importantly, this advantage was modulated by the encoding task, as it was reliable only in the task which focused on emotionality. These findings suggest that congruity with the dimension attended at encoding might contribute to the superiority in memory for emotional words, thus offering us a more complex picture of the underlying mechanisms behind the advantage for emotional information in memory. PMID:25435268

  10. Memory for emotional words: The role of semantic relatedness, encoding task and affective valence.

    PubMed

    Ferré, Pilar; Fraga, Isabel; Comesaña, Montserrat; Sánchez-Casas, Rosa

    2015-01-01

    Emotional stimuli have been repeatedly demonstrated to be better remembered than neutral ones. The aim of the present study was to test whether this advantage in memory is mainly produced by the affective content of the stimuli or it can be rather accounted for by factors such as semantic relatedness or type of encoding task. The valence of the stimuli (positive, negative and neutral words that could be either semantically related or unrelated) as well as the type of encoding task (focused on either familiarity or emotionality) was manipulated. The results revealed an advantage in memory for emotional words (either positive or negative) regardless of semantic relatedness. Importantly, this advantage was modulated by the encoding task, as it was reliable only in the task which focused on emotionality. These findings suggest that congruity with the dimension attended at encoding might contribute to the superiority in memory for emotional words, thus offering us a more complex picture of the underlying mechanisms behind the advantage for emotional information in memory.

  11. Is a Responsive Default Mode Network Required for Successful Working Memory Task Performance?

    PubMed Central

    Čeko, Marta; Gracely, John L.; Fitzcharles, Mary-Ann; Seminowicz, David A.; Schweinhardt, Petra

    2015-01-01

    In studies of cognitive processing using tasks with externally directed attention, regions showing increased (external-task-positive) and decreased or “negative” [default-mode network (DMN)] fMRI responses during task performance are dynamically responsive to increasing task difficulty. Responsiveness (modulation of fMRI signal by increasing load) has been linked directly to successful cognitive task performance in external-task-positive regions but not in DMN regions. To investigate whether a responsive DMN is required for successful cognitive performance, we compared healthy human subjects (n = 23) with individuals shown to have decreased DMN engagement (chronic pain patients, n = 28). Subjects performed a multilevel working-memory task (N-back) during fMRI. If a responsive DMN is required for successful performance, patients having reduced DMN responsiveness should show worsened performance; if performance is not reduced, their brains should show compensatory activation in external-task-positive regions or elsewhere. All subjects showed decreased accuracy and increased reaction times with increasing task level, with no significant group differences on either measure at any level. Patients had significantly reduced negative fMRI response (deactivation) of DMN regions (posterior cingulate/precuneus, medial prefrontal cortex). Controls showed expected modulation of DMN deactivation with increasing task difficulty. Patients showed significantly reduced modulation of DMN deactivation by task difficulty, despite their successful task performance. We found no evidence of compensatory neural recruitment in external-task-positive regions or elsewhere. Individual responsiveness of the external-task-positive ventrolateral prefrontal cortex, but not of DMN regions, correlated with task accuracy. These findings suggest that a responsive DMN may not be required for successful cognitive performance; a responsive external-task-positive network may be sufficient

  12. How chimpanzees (Pan troglodytes) perform in a modified emotional Stroop task.

    PubMed

    Allritz, Matthias; Call, Josep; Borkenau, Peter

    2016-05-01

    The emotional Stroop task is an experimental paradigm developed to study the relationship between emotion and cognition. Human participants required to identify the color of words typically respond more slowly to negative than to neutral words (emotional Stroop effect). Here we investigated whether chimpanzees (Pan troglodytes) would show a comparable effect. Using a touch screen, eight chimpanzees were trained to choose between two simultaneously presented stimuli based on color (two identical images with differently colored frames). In Experiment 1, the images within the color frames were shapes that were either of the same color as the surrounding frame or of the alternative color. Subjects made fewer errors and responded faster when shapes were of the same color as the frame surrounding them than when they were not, evidencing that embedded images affected target selection. Experiment 2, a modified version of the emotional Stroop task, presented subjects with four different categories of novel images: three categories of pictures of humans (veterinarian, caretaker, and stranger), and control stimuli showing a white square. Because visits by the veterinarian that include anaesthetization can be stressful for subjects, we expected impaired performance in trials presenting images of the veterinarian. For the first session, we found correct responses to be indeed slower in trials of this category. This effect was more pronounced for subjects whose last anaesthetization experience was more recent, indicating that emotional valence caused the slowdown. We propose our modified emotional Stroop task as a simple method to explore which emotional stimuli affect cognitive performance in nonhuman primates. PMID:26613593

  13. How chimpanzees (Pan troglodytes) perform in a modified emotional Stroop task.

    PubMed

    Allritz, Matthias; Call, Josep; Borkenau, Peter

    2016-05-01

    The emotional Stroop task is an experimental paradigm developed to study the relationship between emotion and cognition. Human participants required to identify the color of words typically respond more slowly to negative than to neutral words (emotional Stroop effect). Here we investigated whether chimpanzees (Pan troglodytes) would show a comparable effect. Using a touch screen, eight chimpanzees were trained to choose between two simultaneously presented stimuli based on color (two identical images with differently colored frames). In Experiment 1, the images within the color frames were shapes that were either of the same color as the surrounding frame or of the alternative color. Subjects made fewer errors and responded faster when shapes were of the same color as the frame surrounding them than when they were not, evidencing that embedded images affected target selection. Experiment 2, a modified version of the emotional Stroop task, presented subjects with four different categories of novel images: three categories of pictures of humans (veterinarian, caretaker, and stranger), and control stimuli showing a white square. Because visits by the veterinarian that include anaesthetization can be stressful for subjects, we expected impaired performance in trials presenting images of the veterinarian. For the first session, we found correct responses to be indeed slower in trials of this category. This effect was more pronounced for subjects whose last anaesthetization experience was more recent, indicating that emotional valence caused the slowdown. We propose our modified emotional Stroop task as a simple method to explore which emotional stimuli affect cognitive performance in nonhuman primates.

  14. Do prospective workday appraisals influence end-of-workday affect and self-monitored performance?

    PubMed

    Grawitch, Matthew J; Granda, Stephanie E; Barber, Larissa K

    2008-10-01

    The current study uses self-regulation as the basis for a model that examines the influence of three types of workday appraisals (resource, task, and response). At the beginning of their workday, a total of 170 faculty, graduate students, and staff of a university completed appraisal ratings of their anticipated workday tasks, resources, and responses. At the end of the workday, they completed assessments of positive and negative affect and self-monitored performance. Results suggested that resource appraisals of control and skills were predictive of task appraisals of difficulty, threat, and ambiguity. Task appraisals were then predictive of both response appraisals, in terms of anticipated support and effort, and self-monitored performance at the end of the day. Anticipated effort and self-monitored performance were both positively related to positive affect at the end of the day. Anticipated support and self-monitored performance were both negatively related to negative affect at the end of the day, while threat task appraisals were positively related to negative affect. Implications of the results for workplace interventions are discussed. PMID:18837628

  15. Do prospective workday appraisals influence end-of-workday affect and self-monitored performance?

    PubMed

    Grawitch, Matthew J; Granda, Stephanie E; Barber, Larissa K

    2008-10-01

    The current study uses self-regulation as the basis for a model that examines the influence of three types of workday appraisals (resource, task, and response). At the beginning of their workday, a total of 170 faculty, graduate students, and staff of a university completed appraisal ratings of their anticipated workday tasks, resources, and responses. At the end of the workday, they completed assessments of positive and negative affect and self-monitored performance. Results suggested that resource appraisals of control and skills were predictive of task appraisals of difficulty, threat, and ambiguity. Task appraisals were then predictive of both response appraisals, in terms of anticipated support and effort, and self-monitored performance at the end of the day. Anticipated effort and self-monitored performance were both positively related to positive affect at the end of the day. Anticipated support and self-monitored performance were both negatively related to negative affect at the end of the day, while threat task appraisals were positively related to negative affect. Implications of the results for workplace interventions are discussed.

  16. Influence of affective words on lexical decision task in major depression.

    PubMed Central

    Stip, E; Lecours, A R; Chertkow, H; Elie, R; O'Connor, K

    1994-01-01

    In cognitive science, lexical decision task is used to investigate visual word recognition and lexical access. The issue of whether or not individuals who are depressed differ in their access to affectively laden words and specifically to words that have negative affect was examined. Based on some aspects of the Resource Allocation Model (Ellis), it was postulated that patients suffering from depression take more time to recognize items from an affective-loaded list. In order to compare their behavior in a lexical decision task, patients suffering from depression and healthy controls were studied. We hoped to find an interaction between the mood state of subjects and the categories (affective or neutral) of words. Two groups of right-handed adults served as subjects in our experiment. The first group consisted of 11 patients suffering from depression (mean age: 40.2; sd: 6.8). All of this group met the DSM-III-R and the Research Diagnostic Criteria for major depressive disorder. Severity of their disease was rated using the 24-item Hamilton Depressive Rating Scale. All patients suffering from depression were without psychotropic medication. The control group was composed of 24 subjects (mean age: 32.7; sd: 7.9). A depressive word-list and a neutral word-list were built and a computer was used for the lexical-decision task. A longer reaction time to detect the non-word stimuli (F1,33 = 11.19, p < 0.01) was observed with the patients by comparison to the normal subjects. In the analysis of the word stimuli, a group by list interaction (F1,33 = 7.18, p < 0.01) was found.(ABSTRACT TRUNCATED AT 250 WORDS) PMID:8031744

  17. Changes in task self-efficacy and emotion across competitive performances in golf.

    PubMed

    Boardley, Ian D; Jackson, Ben; Simmons, Alexander

    2015-08-01

    This research aimed to investigate (a) the effect of golfers' perceptions of coach motivation efficacy on golfers' precompetition task self-efficacy, (b) the effect of performance on pre-to-postround changes in self-efficacy, (c) the effect of pre-to-postround changes in self-efficacy on pre-to-postround changes in affect and emotion, and (d) whether any effects of performance on pre-to-postcompetition changes in affect and emotion were mediated by pre-to-postcompetition changes in self-efficacy. In Study 1, a scale measuring golf self-efficacy was developed and validated using data from 197 golfers. In Study 2, 200 golfers completed this measure alongside measures of coach motivation efficacy, and positive and negative affect before a golf competition; all measures (except coach motivation efficacy) were again completed following the competition. Structural equation modeling showed that coach motivation efficacy positively predicted precompetition self-efficacy, performance positively predicted pre-to-postcompetition changes in self-efficacy, which had positive and negative effects, respectively, on pre-to-postcompetition changes in positive and negative affect; mediation analyses demonstrated that pre-to-postcompetition changes in self-efficacy mediated effects of performance on pre-to-postcompetition changes in positive and negative affect. In Study 3, the Study-2 procedures were replicated with a separate sample of 212 golfers, except measures of excitement, concentration disruption, somatic anxiety, and worry replaced those for positive and negative affect. Structural analyses showed the findings from Study 2 were largely replicated when specific emotions were investigated in place of general indices of affect. This investigation makes novel contributions regarding the potential importance of perceptions of coach efficacy for golfers' own efficacy beliefs, and the role personal efficacy beliefs may play in facilitating the effects of performance on affective

  18. Changes in task self-efficacy and emotion across competitive performances in golf.

    PubMed

    Boardley, Ian D; Jackson, Ben; Simmons, Alexander

    2015-08-01

    This research aimed to investigate (a) the effect of golfers' perceptions of coach motivation efficacy on golfers' precompetition task self-efficacy, (b) the effect of performance on pre-to-postround changes in self-efficacy, (c) the effect of pre-to-postround changes in self-efficacy on pre-to-postround changes in affect and emotion, and (d) whether any effects of performance on pre-to-postcompetition changes in affect and emotion were mediated by pre-to-postcompetition changes in self-efficacy. In Study 1, a scale measuring golf self-efficacy was developed and validated using data from 197 golfers. In Study 2, 200 golfers completed this measure alongside measures of coach motivation efficacy, and positive and negative affect before a golf competition; all measures (except coach motivation efficacy) were again completed following the competition. Structural equation modeling showed that coach motivation efficacy positively predicted precompetition self-efficacy, performance positively predicted pre-to-postcompetition changes in self-efficacy, which had positive and negative effects, respectively, on pre-to-postcompetition changes in positive and negative affect; mediation analyses demonstrated that pre-to-postcompetition changes in self-efficacy mediated effects of performance on pre-to-postcompetition changes in positive and negative affect. In Study 3, the Study-2 procedures were replicated with a separate sample of 212 golfers, except measures of excitement, concentration disruption, somatic anxiety, and worry replaced those for positive and negative affect. Structural analyses showed the findings from Study 2 were largely replicated when specific emotions were investigated in place of general indices of affect. This investigation makes novel contributions regarding the potential importance of perceptions of coach efficacy for golfers' own efficacy beliefs, and the role personal efficacy beliefs may play in facilitating the effects of performance on affective

  19. An empirically derived figure of merit for the quality of overall task performance

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Lemay, Moira

    1989-01-01

    The need to develop an operationally relevant figure of merit for the quality of performance of a complex system such as an aircraft cockpit stems from a hypothesized dissociation between measures of performance and those of workload. Performance can be measured in terms of time, errors, or a combination of these. In most tasks performed by expert operators, errors are relatively rare and often corrected in time to avoid consequences. Moreover, perfect performance is seldom necessary to accomplish a particular task. Moreover, how well an expert performs a complex task consisting of a series of discrete cognitive tasks superimposed on a continuous task, such as flying an aircraft, does not depend on how well each discrete task is performed, but on their smooth sequencing. This makes the amount of time spent on each subtask of paramount importance in measuring overall performance, since smooth sequencing requires a minimum amount of time spent on each task. Quality consists in getting tasks done within a crucial time interval while maintaining acceptable continuous task performance. Thus, a figure of merit for overall quality of performance should be primarily a measure of time to perform discrete subtasks combined with a measure of basic vehicle control. Thus, the proposed figure of merit requires doing a task analysis on a series of performance, or runs, of a particular task, listing each discrete task and its associated time, and calculating the mean and standard deviation of these times, along with the mean and standard deviation of tracking error for the whole task. A set of simulator data on 30 runs of a landing task was obtained and a figure of merit will be calculated for each run. The figure of merit will be compared for voice and data link, so that the impact of this technology on total crew performance (not just communication performance) can be assessed. The effect of data link communication on other cockpit tasks will also be considered.

  20. Effect of Visuo-Motor Co-location on 3D Fitts' Task Performance in Physical and Virtual Environments

    PubMed Central

    Fu, Michael J.; Hershberger, Andrew D.; Sano, Kumiko; Çavuşoğlu, M. Cenk

    2013-01-01

    condition, but the difference was not statistically significant. Also, rotation misalignments showed that task performance were mostly reduced to minimums at 90°, 135°, and 225°. We conclude that co-located VEs may not significantly improve point-to-point reaching performance over non-colocated VEs. Also, visual rotations of ±45° affected throughput, efficiency, peak velocity, and initial movement error, but the number of corrective movements were not affected until ±90°. PMID:24348003

  1. Extraversion and reward-related processing: probing incentive motivation in affective priming tasks.

    PubMed

    Robinson, Michael D; Moeller, Sara K; Ode, Scott

    2010-10-01

    Based on an incentive motivation theory of extraversion (Depue & Collins, 1999), it was hypothesized that extraverts (relative to introverts) would exhibit stronger positive priming effects in affective priming tasks, whether involving words or pictures. This hypothesis was systematically supported in four studies involving 229 undergraduates. In each of the four studies, and in a subsequent combined analysis, extraversion was positively predictive of positive affective priming effects, but was not predictive of negative affective priming effects. The results bridge an important gap in the literature between biological and trait models of incentive motivation and do so in a way that should be informative to subsequent efforts to understand the processing basis of extraversion as well as incentive motivation.

  2. Stability and performance of ant queue inspired task partitioning methods.

    PubMed

    Scheidler, Alexander; Merkle, Daniel; Middendorf, Martin

    2008-06-01

    In this paper, we consider computing systems that have autonomous helper components which fulfill support functions and that possess reconfigurable hardware so that they can specialize to different types of service tasks. Several self-organized task partitioning methods are proposed that can be used by the helper components to decide how to reconfigure and which service tasks to execute. The proposed task partitioning methods are inspired by the so-called ant queue system that can be found in real ants for partitioning tasks between the individuals. The aim of this study is to investigate basic properties of the task partitioning methods, like stability and efficiency, in order to obtain basic insights into the design of task partitioning methods in self-organized service systems. More precisely, the investigations are threefold: (1) discrete event simulations are used to investigate systems, (2) for a simple version of the task partitioning system analytical stability results are obtained by means of delay differential equation systems and (3) by numerically solving initial value problems.

  3. Intelligence, but Not Emotional Intelligence, Predicts Iowa Gambling Task Performance

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Demaree, Heath A.; Burns, Kevin J.; DeDonno, Michael A.

    2010-01-01

    The Iowa Gambling Task (IGT) is a famous and frequently-used neuropsychological task that is thought to reflect real-world decision-making. There has been some debate, however, about the degree to which the IGT involves cold (cognitive) versus hot (emotional) processing. The present study incorporated 68 healthy individuals and used measures of…

  4. Executive Functions are not Affected by 24 Hours of Sleep Deprivation: A Color-Word Stroop Task Study

    PubMed Central

    Dixit, Abhinav; Mittal, Tushar

    2015-01-01

    Background: Sleep is an important factor affecting cognitive performance. Sleep deprivation results in fatigue, lack of concentration, confusion and sleepiness along with anxiety, depression and irritability. Sleep deprivation can have serious consequences in professions like armed forces and medicine where quick decisions and actions need to be taken. Color-Word Stroop task is one of the reliable tests to assess attention and it analyzes the processing of information in two dimensions i.e., reading of words and naming of colour. The evidence regarding the effect of sleep deprivation on Stroop interference is conflicting. The present study evaluated the effect of 24 hours of sleep deprivation on reaction time and interference in Stroop task. Materials and Methods: The present study was done on 30 healthy male medical student volunteers in the age group of 18-25 years after taking their consent and clearance from Institute Ethics Committee. Recordings of Stroop task were at three times: baseline (between 7-9 am), after 12 hours (7-9 pm) and after 24 hours (7-9 am, next day). The subjects were allowed to perform normal daily activities. Results: The study revealed a significant increase in reaction time after 24 hours of sleep deprivation in comparison to baseline and after 12 hours of sleep deprivation. There was no significant change in interference and facilitation after sleep deprivation in comparison to baseline. The number of errors also did not show any significant change after sleep deprivation. Conclusion: The study indicated that there was slowing of responses without change in executive functions after 24 hours of sleep deprivation. It is probable that 24 hours of sleep deprivation does not bring about change in areas of brain affecting executive functions in healthy individuals who have normal sleep cycle. The present study indicated that in professions like armed forces and medicine working 24 hours at a stretch can lead to decrease in motor responses

  5. Dizocilpine (MK-801) impairs learning in the active place avoidance task but has no effect on the performance during task/context alternation.

    PubMed

    Vojtechova, Iveta; Petrasek, Tomas; Hatalova, Hana; Pistikova, Adela; Vales, Karel; Stuchlik, Ales

    2016-05-15

    The prevention of engram interference, pattern separation, flexibility, cognitive coordination and spatial navigation are usually studied separately at the behavioral level. Impairment in executive functions is often observed in patients suffering from schizophrenia. We have designed a protocol for assessing these functions all together as behavioral separation. This protocol is based on alternated or sequential training in two tasks testing different hippocampal functions (the Morris water maze and active place avoidance), and alternated or sequential training in two similar environments of the active place avoidance task. In Experiment 1, we tested, in adult rats, whether the performance in two different spatial tasks was affected by their order in sequential learning, or by their day-to-day alternation. In Experiment 2, rats learned to solve the active place avoidance task in two environments either alternately or sequentially. We found that rats are able to acquire both tasks and to discriminate both similar contexts without obvious problems regardless of the order or the alternation. We used two groups of rats, controls and a rat model of psychosis induced by a subchronic intraperitoneal application of 0.08mg/kg of dizocilpine (MK-801), a non-competitive antagonist of NMDA receptors. Dizocilpine had no selective effect on parallel/sequential learning of tasks/contexts. However, it caused hyperlocomotion and a significant deficit in learning in the active place avoidance task regardless of the task alternation. Cognitive coordination tested by this task is probably more sensitive to dizocilpine than spatial orientation because no hyperactivity or learning impairment was observed in the Morris water maze.

  6. Internalizing versus Externalizing Control: Different Ways to Perform a Time-Based Prospective Memory Task

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Huang, Tracy; Loft, Shayne; Humphreys, Michael S.

    2014-01-01

    "Time-based prospective memory" (PM) refers to performing intended actions at a future time. Participants with time-based PM tasks can be slower to perform ongoing tasks (costs) than participants without PM tasks because internal control is required to maintain the PM intention or to make prospective-timing estimates. However, external…

  7. Task Performance and Response to Frustration in Children with Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Scime, Melinda; Norvilitis, Jill M.

    2006-01-01

    The present study examined performance on an arithmetic task of increasing difficulty and a frustrating puzzle task for children with ADHD and comparison children. Emotional competence also was investigated in the two groups. Sixty-four children, 21 previously diagnosed with ADHD, participated. Performance on the arithmetic task was measured in…

  8. Complexity, Accuracy, Fluency and Lexis in Task-Based Performance: A Synthesis of the Ealing Research

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Skehan, Peter; Foster, Pauline

    2012-01-01

    This chapter will present a research synthesis of a series of studies, termed here the Ealing research. The studies use the same general framework to conceptualise tasks and task performance, enabling easier comparability. The different studies, although each is self-contained, build into a wider picture of task performance. The major point of…

  9. Do general intellectual functioning and socioeconomic status account for performance on the Children's Gambling Task?

    PubMed Central

    Mata, Fernanda; Sallum, Isabela; Miranda, Débora M.; Bechara, Antoine; Malloy-Diniz, Leandro F.

    2013-01-01

    Studies that use the Iowa Gambling Task (IGT) and its age-appropriate versions as indices of affective decision-making during childhood and adolescence have demonstrated significant individual differences in scores. Our study investigated the association between general intellectual functioning and socioeconomic status (SES) and its effect on the development of affective decision-making in preschoolers by using a computerized version of the Children's Gambling Task (CGT). We administered the CGT and the Columbia Mental Maturity Scale (CMMS) to 137 Brazilian children between the ages of 3 and 5 years old to assess their general intellectual functioning. We also used the Brazilian Criterion of Economic Classification (CCEB) to assess their SES. Age differences between 3- and 4-years-old, but not between 4- and 5-years-old, confirmed the results obtained by Kerr and Zelazo (2004), indicating the rapid development of affective decision-making during the preschool period. Both 4- and 5-years-old performed significantly above chance on blocks 3, 4, and 5 of the CGT, whereas 3-years-old mean scores did not differ from chance. We found that general intellectual functioning was not related to affective decision-making. On the other hand, our findings showed that children with high SES performed better on the last block of the CGT in comparison to children with low SES, which indicates that children from the former group seem more likely to use the information about the gain/loss aspects of the decks to efficiently choose cards from the advantageous deck throughout the task. PMID:23760222

  10. Free-throw shooting during dual-task performance: implications for attentional demand and performance.

    PubMed

    Price, Jayme; Gill, Diane L; Etnier, Jennifer; Kornatz, Kurt

    2009-12-01

    In this study, the dual-task paradigm was used to determine peak attentional demand during the free-throw process. Thirty participants completed 40 free-throw trials. The free throw was the primary task, but participants also verbally responded to a tone administered at one of four probe positions (PP). Repeated measures analysis of variance showed no significant difference in free-throw performance across PPs, indicating participants were able to keep the free throw as the primary task. Repeated measures analysis of response time (RT) showed significant differences, with RT at PP1 (preshot routine) and PP2 (first upward motion of the ball) significantly higher than baseline RT These results suggest that PP1 requires the greatest attentional demand, followed by PP2.

  11. Analysis of Skeletal Muscle Metrics as Predictors of Functional Task Performance

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Ryder, Jeffrey W.; Buxton, Roxanne E.; Redd, Elizabeth; Scott-Pandorf, Melissa; Hackney, Kyle J.; Fiedler, James; Ploutz-Snyder, Robert J.; Bloomberg, Jacob J.; Ploutz-Snyder, Lori L.

    2010-01-01

    PURPOSE: The ability to predict task performance using physiological performance metrics is vital to ensure that astronauts can execute their jobs safely and effectively. This investigation used a weighted suit to evaluate task performance at various ratios of strength, power, and endurance to body weight. METHODS: Twenty subjects completed muscle performance tests and functional tasks representative of those that would be required of astronauts during planetary exploration (see table for specific tests/tasks). Subjects performed functional tasks while wearing a weighted suit with additional loads ranging from 0-120% of initial body weight. Performance metrics were time to completion for all tasks except hatch opening, which consisted of total work. Task performance metrics were plotted against muscle metrics normalized to "body weight" (subject weight + external load; BW) for each trial. Fractional polynomial regression was used to model the relationship between muscle and task performance. CONCLUSION: LPMIF/BW is the best predictor of performance for predominantly lower-body tasks that are ambulatory and of short duration. LPMIF/BW is a very practical predictor of occupational task performance as it is quick and relatively safe to perform. Accordingly, bench press work best predicts hatch-opening work performance.

  12. 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.

  13. Effects of imperfect automation and individual differences on concurrent performance of military and robotics tasks in a simulated multitasking environment.

    PubMed

    Chen, J Y C; Terrence, P I

    2009-08-01

    This study investigated the performance and workload of the combined position of gunner and robotics operator in a simulated military multitasking environment. Specifically, the study investigated how aided target recognition (AiTR) capabilities for the gunnery task with imperfect reliability (false-alarm-prone vs. miss-prone) might affect the concurrent robotics and communication tasks. Additionally, the study examined whether performance was affected by individual differences in spatial ability and attentional control. Results showed that when the robotics task was simply monitoring the video, participants had the best performance in their gunnery and communication tasks and the lowest perceived workload, compared with the other robotics tasking conditions. There was a strong interaction between the type of AiTR unreliability and participants' perceived attentional control. Overall, for participants with higher perceived attentional control, false-alarm-prone alerts were more detrimental; for low attentional control participants, conversely, miss-prone automation was more harmful. Low spatial ability participants preferred visual cueing and high spatial ability participants favoured tactile cueing. Potential applications of the findings include personnel selection for robotics operation, robotics user interface designs and training development. The present results will provide further understanding of the interplays among automation reliability, multitasking performance and individual differences in military tasking environments. These results will also facilitate the implementation of robots in military settings and will provide useful data to military system designs. PMID:19629806

  14. Effects of imperfect automation and individual differences on concurrent performance of military and robotics tasks in a simulated multitasking environment.

    PubMed

    Chen, J Y C; Terrence, P I

    2009-08-01

    This study investigated the performance and workload of the combined position of gunner and robotics operator in a simulated military multitasking environment. Specifically, the study investigated how aided target recognition (AiTR) capabilities for the gunnery task with imperfect reliability (false-alarm-prone vs. miss-prone) might affect the concurrent robotics and communication tasks. Additionally, the study examined whether performance was affected by individual differences in spatial ability and attentional control. Results showed that when the robotics task was simply monitoring the video, participants had the best performance in their gunnery and communication tasks and the lowest perceived workload, compared with the other robotics tasking conditions. There was a strong interaction between the type of AiTR unreliability and participants' perceived attentional control. Overall, for participants with higher perceived attentional control, false-alarm-prone alerts were more detrimental; for low attentional control participants, conversely, miss-prone automation was more harmful. Low spatial ability participants preferred visual cueing and high spatial ability participants favoured tactile cueing. Potential applications of the findings include personnel selection for robotics operation, robotics user interface designs and training development. The present results will provide further understanding of the interplays among automation reliability, multitasking performance and individual differences in military tasking environments. These results will also facilitate the implementation of robots in military settings and will provide useful data to military system designs.

  15. Abacus Training Affects Math and Task Switching Abilities and Modulates Their Relationships in Chinese Children.

    PubMed

    Wang, Chunjie; Geng, Fengji; Yao, Yuan; Weng, Jian; Hu, Yuzheng; Chen, Feiyan

    2015-01-01

    Our previous work demonstrated that abacus-based mental calculation (AMC), a traditional Chinese calculation method, could help children improve their math abilities (e.g. basic arithmetical ability) and executive function (e.g. working memory). This study further examined the effects of long-term AMC training on math ability in visual-spatial domain and the task switching component of executive function. More importantly, this study investigated whether AMC training modulated the relationship between math abilities and task switching. The participants were seventy 7-year-old children who were randomly assigned into AMC and control groups at primary school entry. Children in AMC group received 2-hour AMC training every week since primary school entry. On the contrary, children in the control group had never received any AMC training. Math and task switching abilities were measured one year and three years respectively after AMC training began. The results showed that AMC children performed better than their peers on math abilities in arithmetical and visual-spatial domains. In addition, AMC group responded faster than control group in the switching task, while no group difference was found in switch cost. Most interestingly, group difference was present in the relationships between math abilities and switch cost. These results implied the effect of AMC training on math abilities as well as its relationship with executive function. PMID:26444689

  16. Abacus Training Affects Math and Task Switching Abilities and Modulates Their Relationships in Chinese Children.

    PubMed

    Wang, Chunjie; Geng, Fengji; Yao, Yuan; Weng, Jian; Hu, Yuzheng; Chen, Feiyan

    2015-01-01

    Our previous work demonstrated that abacus-based mental calculation (AMC), a traditional Chinese calculation method, could help children improve their math abilities (e.g. basic arithmetical ability) and executive function (e.g. working memory). This study further examined the effects of long-term AMC training on math ability in visual-spatial domain and the task switching component of executive function. More importantly, this study investigated whether AMC training modulated the relationship between math abilities and task switching. The participants were seventy 7-year-old children who were randomly assigned into AMC and control groups at primary school entry. Children in AMC group received 2-hour AMC training every week since primary school entry. On the contrary, children in the control group had never received any AMC training. Math and task switching abilities were measured one year and three years respectively after AMC training began. The results showed that AMC children performed better than their peers on math abilities in arithmetical and visual-spatial domains. In addition, AMC group responded faster than control group in the switching task, while no group difference was found in switch cost. Most interestingly, group difference was present in the relationships between math abilities and switch cost. These results implied the effect of AMC training on math abilities as well as its relationship with executive function.

  17. Abacus Training Affects Math and Task Switching Abilities and Modulates Their Relationships in Chinese Children

    PubMed Central

    Yao, Yuan; Weng, Jian; Hu, Yuzheng; Chen, Feiyan

    2015-01-01

    Our previous work demonstrated that abacus-based mental calculation (AMC), a traditional Chinese calculation method, could help children improve their math abilities (e.g. basic arithmetical ability) and executive function (e.g. working memory). This study further examined the effects of long-term AMC training on math ability in visual-spatial domain and the task switching component of executive function. More importantly, this study investigated whether AMC training modulated the relationship between math abilities and task switching. The participants were seventy 7-year-old children who were randomly assigned into AMC and control groups at primary school entry. Children in AMC group received 2-hour AMC training every week since primary school entry. On the contrary, children in the control group had never received any AMC training. Math and task switching abilities were measured one year and three years respectively after AMC training began. The results showed that AMC children performed better than their peers on math abilities in arithmetical and visual-spatial domains. In addition, AMC group responded faster than control group in the switching task, while no group difference was found in switch cost. Most interestingly, group difference was present in the relationships between math abilities and switch cost. These results implied the effect of AMC training on math abilities as well as its relationship with executive function. PMID:26444689

  18. The Effect of Predicted Vehicle Displacement on Ground Crew Task Performance and Hardware Design

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Atencio, Laura Ashley; Reynolds, David W.

    2011-01-01

    NASA continues to explore new launch vehicle concepts that will carry astronauts to low- Earth orbit to replace the soon-to-be retired Space Transportation System (STS) shuttle. A tall vertically stacked launch vehicle (> or =300 ft) is exposed to the natural environment while positioned on the launch pad. Varying directional winds and vortex shedding cause the vehicle to sway in an oscillating motion. Ground crews working high on the tower and inside the vehicle during launch preparations will be subjected to this motion while conducting critical closeout tasks such as mating fluid and electrical connectors and carrying heavy objects. NASA has not experienced performing these tasks in such environments since the Saturn V, which was serviced from a movable (but rigid) service structure; commercial launchers are likewise attended by a service structure that moves away from the vehicle for launch. There is concern that vehicle displacement may hinder ground crew operations, impact the ground system designs, and ultimately affect launch availability. The vehicle sway assessment objective is to replicate predicted frequencies and displacements of these tall vehicles, examine typical ground crew tasks, and provide insight into potential vehicle design considerations and ground crew performance guidelines. This paper outlines the methodology, configurations, and motion testing performed while conducting the vehicle displacement assessment that will be used as a Technical Memorandum for future vertically stacked vehicle designs.

  19. The effects of mental representation on performance in a navigation task

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Barshi, Immanuel; Healy, Alice F.

    2002-01-01

    In three experiments, we investigated the mental representations employed when instructions were followed that involved navigation in a space displayed as a grid on a computer screen. Performance was affected much more by the number of instructional units than by the number of words per unit. Performance in a three-dimensional space was independent of the number of dimensions along which participants navigated. However, memory for and accuracy in following the instructions were reduced when the task required mentally representing a three-dimensional space, as compared with representing a two-dimensional space, although the words used in the instructions were identical in the two cases. These results demonstrate the interdependence of verbal and spatial memory representations, because individuals' immediate memory for verbal navigation instructions is affected by their mental representation of the space referred to by the instructions.

  20. Effects of multitasking on operator performance using computational and auditory tasks.

    PubMed

    Fasanya, Bankole K

    2016-09-01

    This study investigated the effects of multiple cognitive tasks on human performance. Twenty-four students at North Carolina A&T State University participated in the study. The primary task was auditory signal change perception and the secondary task was a computational task. Results showed that participants' performance in a single task was statistically significantly different from their performance in combined tasks: (a) algebra problems (algebra problem primary and auditory perception secondary); (b) auditory perception tasks (auditory perception primary and algebra problems secondary); and (c) mean false-alarm score in auditory perception (auditory detection primary and algebra problems secondary). Using signal detection theory (SDT), participants' performance measured in terms of sensitivity was calculated as -0.54 for combined tasks (algebra problems the primary task) and -0.53 auditory perceptions the primary task. During auditory perception tasks alone, SDT was found to be 2.51. Performance was 83% in a single task compared to 17% when combined tasks. PMID:26886505

  1. Effects of amphetamine, morphine, and CP 55, 940 on Go/No-Go task performance in rhesus monkeys.

    PubMed

    Koek, Wouter; Gerak, Lisa R; France, Charles P

    2015-08-01

    In humans, impulsivity measured as false alarms in a Go/No-Go task is reportedly decreased by amphetamine and is not affected by oxycodone and delta(9)-tetrahydrocannabinol. To model these findings in animals, three rhesus monkeys were trained to perform a food-reinforced Go/No-Go task. In this task, amphetamine was found to decrease false alarms (i.e. responding during No-Go trials), but only at doses that also decreased hits (i.e. responding during Go trials). Morphine generally decreased hits but not false alarms. The cannabinoid receptor agonist CP 55, 940 decreased both false alarms and hits, but only at doses that also decreased the number of trials completed. Additional studies in animals and humans are necessary to delineate the conditions under which amphetamine and other psychoactive drugs affect impulsivity in Go/No-Go tasks. PMID:26061355

  2. Oxytocin does not improve performance of patients with schizophrenia and healthy volunteers in a facial emotion matching task.

    PubMed

    Horta de Macedo, Ligia R; Zuardi, Antonio Waldo; Machado-de-Sousa, João Paulo; Chagas, Marcos Hortes N; Hallak, Jaime E C

    2014-12-15

    The neuropeptide oxytocin improves the performance in facial emotion recognition tests in healthy volunteers and in individuals with schizophrenia. Different paradigms are used in emotion recognition tasks, engaging different neurobiological bases. To date, the effects of oxytocin in facial emotion matching tasks have not been studied. The objective of this study was to evaluate the effects of intranasal oxytocin in a facial emotion matching task in patients with schizophrenia and healthy volunteers. Twenty patients and 20 healthy volunteers received 48 IU intranasal oxytocin and placebo in a double-blind, randomized, placebo-controlled, within subjects design. Fifty minutes after treatment, subjects completed a facial emotion matching task and three control tests. Oxytocin failed to improve facial affect processing, in contrast with previous results. Possible explanations are the fact that we used a facial emotion matching paradigm instead of emotion labeling tasks and a higher dose of oxytocin than the one used in most similar studies.

  3. Aspects of Performance on Line Graph Description Tasks: Influenced by Graph Familiarity and Different Task Features

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Xi, Xiaoming

    2010-01-01

    Motivated by cognitive theories of graph comprehension, this study systematically manipulated characteristics of a line graph description task in a speaking test in ways to mitigate the influence of graph familiarity, a potential source of construct-irrelevant variance. It extends Xi (2005), which found that the differences in holistic scores on…

  4. Motion coordination affects movement parameters in a joint pick-and-place task.

    PubMed

    Vesper, Cordula; Soutschek, Alexander; Schubo, Anna

    2009-12-01

    This study examined influences of social context on movement parameters in a pick-and-place task. Participants' motion trajectories were recorded while they performed sequences of natural movements either working side-by-side with a partner or alone. It was expected that movement parameters would be specifically adapted to the joint condition to overcome the difficulties arising from the requirement to coordinate with another person. To disentangle effects based on participants' effort to coordinate their movements from effects merely due to the other's presence, a condition was included where only one person performed the task while being observed by the partner. Results indicate that participants adapted their movements temporally and spatially to the joint action situation: Overall movement duration was shorter, and mean and maximum velocity was higher when actually working together than when working alone. Pick-to-place trajectories were also shifted away from the partner in spatial coordinates. The partner's presence as such did not have an impact on movement parameters. These findings are interpreted as evidence for the use of implicit strategies to facilitate movement coordination in joint action tasks.

  5. Rotation during lifting tasks: effects of rotation frequency and task order on localized muscle fatigue and performance.

    PubMed

    Horton, Leanna M; Nussbaum, Maury A; Agnew, Michael J

    2015-01-01

    Though widely considered to reduce the risk of work-related musculoskeletal disorders, there is limited evidence suggesting that rotating between tasks is effective in doing so. The purpose of the current study was to quantify the effects of rotation and parameters of rotation (frequency and task order) on muscle fatigue and performance. This was done using a simulated lifting task, with rotation between two levels of loading of the same muscle groups. Twelve participants completed six experimental sessions during which repetitive box lifting was performed for one hour either with or without rotation. When rotation was present, it occurred every 15 minutes or every 30 minutes and was between two load levels (box weights). Rotation reduced fatigue and cardiovascular demand compared to the heavier load without rotation, with a mean reduction of ∼33% in perceived discomfort and a ∼17% reduction in percentage of heart rate reserve. Further, rotation increased fatigue and cardiovascular demand compared to the lighter load without rotation, with a mean increase of ∼34% perceived discomfort and a ∼19% increase in percentage of heart rate reserve. Neither rotation frequency nor task order had definitive effects, though maximum discomfort ratings were nearly 20% higher when starting with the lighter load task. These parameters of rotation should be further evaluated under more realistic task conditions. PMID:25551257

  6. Rotation during lifting tasks: effects of rotation frequency and task order on localized muscle fatigue and performance.

    PubMed

    Horton, Leanna M; Nussbaum, Maury A; Agnew, Michael J

    2015-01-01

    Though widely considered to reduce the risk of work-related musculoskeletal disorders, there is limited evidence suggesting that rotating between tasks is effective in doing so. The purpose of the current study was to quantify the effects of rotation and parameters of rotation (frequency and task order) on muscle fatigue and performance. This was done using a simulated lifting task, with rotation between two levels of loading of the same muscle groups. Twelve participants completed six experimental sessions during which repetitive box lifting was performed for one hour either with or without rotation. When rotation was present, it occurred every 15 minutes or every 30 minutes and was between two load levels (box weights). Rotation reduced fatigue and cardiovascular demand compared to the heavier load without rotation, with a mean reduction of ∼33% in perceived discomfort and a ∼17% reduction in percentage of heart rate reserve. Further, rotation increased fatigue and cardiovascular demand compared to the lighter load without rotation, with a mean increase of ∼34% perceived discomfort and a ∼19% increase in percentage of heart rate reserve. Neither rotation frequency nor task order had definitive effects, though maximum discomfort ratings were nearly 20% higher when starting with the lighter load task. These parameters of rotation should be further evaluated under more realistic task conditions.

  7. Iowa gambling task performance in overweight children and adolescents at risk for obstructive sleep apnea.

    PubMed

    McNally, Kelly A; Shear, Paula K; Tlustos, Sarah; Amin, Raouf S; Beebe, Dean W

    2012-05-01

    Obstructive sleep apnea (OSA) is a nocturnal respiratory disorder associated with cognitive and behavioral sequelae, including impairments in executive functioning (EF). Previous literature has focused on "cool" EF, meaning abilities such as working memory and planning that do not involve affective control requirements. Little is known about the impact OSA may have on "hot" EF that involves regulation of affect and risk-related decision-making, and that may be particularly salient during adolescence, when these skills are rapidly developing. This study examined performance on the Iowa Gambling Task (IGT), a task believed to assess aspects of "hot" EF, in overweight adolescents at risk for OSA. Consistent with hypotheses, individuals without OSA made more beneficial decisions on the IGT over time, but participants with OSA did not benefit from feedback and continued to make choices associated with higher initial rewards, but greater long-term losses. The relationship between developmental level and IGT performance was moderated by OSA status. Individuals with OSA did not demonstrate the expected developmental gains in performance during the IGT. This finding suggests that OSA may impact the development of critical aspects of EF, or at least the expression of these skills during the developmentally important period of adolescence. PMID:22300670

  8. Auditory tasks for assessment of sensory function and affective prosody in schizophrenia.

    PubMed

    Petkova, Eva; Lu, Feihan; Kantrowitz, Joshua; Sanchez, Jamie L; Lehrfeld, Jonathan; Scaramello, Nayla; Silipo, Gail; DiCostanza, Joanna; Ross, Marina; Su, Zhe; Javitt, Daniel C; Butler, Pamela D

    2014-11-01

    Schizophrenia patients exhibit impairments in auditory-based social cognition, indicated by deficits in detection of prosody, such as affective prosody and basic pitch perception. However, little is known about the psychometric properties of behavioral tests used to assess these functions. The goal of this paper is to characterize the properties of prosody and pitch perception tasks and to investigate whether they can be shortened. The pitch perception test evaluated is a tone-matching task developed by Javitt and colleagues (J-TMT). The prosody test evaluated is the auditory emotion recognition task developed by Juslin and Laukka (JL-AER). The sample includes 124 schizophrenia patients (SZ) and 131 healthy controls (HC). Properties, including facility and discrimination, of each item were assessed. Effects of item characteristics (e.g., emotion) were also evaluated. Shortened versions of the tests are proposed based on facility, discrimination, and/or ability of item characteristics to discriminate between patients and controls. Test-retest reliability is high for patients and controls for both the original and short forms of the J-TMT and JL-AER. Thus, the original as well as short forms of the J-TMT and JL-AER are suggested for inclusion in clinical trials of social cognitive and perceptual treatments. The development of short forms further increases the utility of these auditory tasks in clinical trials and clinical practice. The large SZ vs. HC differences reported here also highlight the profound nature of auditory deficits and a need for remediation. PMID:25214372

  9. Auditory Tasks for Assessment of Sensory Function and Affective Prosody in Schizophrenia

    PubMed Central

    Petkova, Eva; Lu, Feihan; Kantrowitz, Joshua; Sanchez, Jamie L.; Lehrfeld, Jonathan; Scaramello, Nayla; Silipo, Gail; DiCostanza, Joanna; Ross, Marina; Su, Zhe; Javitt, Daniel C.; Butler, Pamela D.

    2015-01-01

    Schizophrenia patients exhibit impairments in auditory-based social cognition, indicated by deficits in detection of prosody, such as affective prosody and basic pitch perception. However, little is known about the psychometric properties of behavioral tests used to assess these functions. The goal of this paper is to characterize the properties of prosody and pitch perception tasks and to investigate whether they can be shortened. The pitch perception test evaluated is a tone-matching task developed by Javitt and colleagues (J-TMT). The prosody test evaluated is the auditory emotion recognition task developed by Juslin and Laukka (JL-AER). The sample includes 124 schizophrenia patients (SZ) and 131 healthy controls (HC). Properties, including facility and discrimination, of each item were assessed. Effects of item characteristics (e.g., emotion) were also evaluated. Shortened versions of the tests are proposed based on facility, discrimination, and/or ability of item characteristics to discriminate between patients and controls. Test-retest reliability is high for patients and controls for both the original and short forms of the J-TMT and JL-AER. Thus, the original as well as short forms of the J-TMT and JL-AER are suggested for inclusion in clinical trials of social cognitive and perceptual treatments. The development of short forms further increases the utility of these auditory tasks in clinical trials and clinical practice. The large SZ vs. HC differences reported here also highlight the profound nature of auditory deficits and a need for remediation. PMID:25214372

  10. The eccentricity effect: target eccentricity affects performance on conjunction searches.

    PubMed

    Carrasco, M; Evert, D L; Chang, I; Katz, S M

    1995-11-01

    The serial pattern found for conjunction visual-search tasks has been attributed to covert attentional shifts, even though the possible contributions of target location have not been considered. To investigate the effect of target location on orientation x color conjunction searches, the target's duration and its position in the display were manipulated. The display was present either until observers responded (Experiment 1), for 104 msec (Experiment 2), or for 62 msec (Experiment 3). Target eccentricity critically affected performance: A pronounced eccentricity effect was very similar for all three experiments; as eccentricity increased, reaction times and errors increased gradually. Furthermore, the set-size effect became more pronounced as target eccentricity increased, and the extent of the eccentricity effect increased for larger set sizes. In addition, according to stepwise regressions, target eccentricity as well as its interaction with set size were good predictors of performance. We suggest that these findings could be explained by spatial-resolution and lateral-inhibition factors. The serial self-terminating hypothesis for orientation x color conjunction searches was evaluated and rejected. We compared the eccentricity effect as well as the extent of the orientation asymmetry in these three conjunction experiments with those found in feature experiments (Carrasco & Katz, 1992). The roles of eye movements, spatial resolution, and covert attention in the eccentricity effect, as well as their implications, are discussed.

  11. Affectively salient meaning in random noise: a task sensitive to psychosis liability.

    PubMed

    Galdos, Mariana; Simons, Claudia; Fernandez-Rivas, Aranzazu; Wichers, Marieke; Peralta, Concepción; Lataster, Tineke; Amer, Guillermo; Myin-Germeys, Inez; Allardyce, Judith; Gonzalez-Torres, Miguel Angel; van Os, Jim

    2011-11-01

    Stable differences in the tendency to attribute meaning and emotional value to experience may represent an indicator of liability to psychosis. A brief task was developed assessing variation in detecting affectively meaningful speech (speech illusion) in neutral random signals (white noise) and the degree to which this was associated with psychometric and familial vulnerability for psychosis. Thirty patients, 28 of their siblings, and 307 controls participated. The rate of speech illusion was compared between cases and controls. In controls, the association between speech illusion and interview-based positive schizotypy was assessed. The hypothesis of a dose-response increase in rate of speech illusion across increasing levels of familial vulnerability for psychosis (controls, siblings of patients, and patients) was examined. Patients were more likely to display speech illusions than controls (odds ratio [OR] = 4.0, 95% confidence interval [CI] = 1.4-11.7), also after controlling for neurocognitive variables (OR = 3.8, 95% CI = 1.04-14.1). The case-control difference was more accentuated for speech illusion perceived as affectively salient (positively or negatively appraised) than for neutrally appraised speech illusions. Speech illusion in the controls was strongly associated with positive schizotypy but not with negative schizotypy. In addition, the rate of speech illusion increased with increasing level of familial risk for psychotic disorder. The data suggest that the white noise task may be sensitive to psychometric and familial vulnerability for psychosis associated with alterations in top-down processing and/or salience attribution. PMID:20360211

  12. Beyond Capacity Limitations: Determinants of Word Recall Performance on Verbal Working Memory Span Tasks in Children with SLI

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Mainela-Arnold, Elina; Evans, Julia L.

    2005-01-01

    Reduced verbal working memory capacity has been proposed as a possible account of language impairments in specific language impairment (SLI). Studies have shown, however, that differences in strength of linguistic representations in the form of word frequency affect list recall and performance on verbal working memory tasks. This suggests that…

  13. Learning Style and Task Performance in Synchronous Computer-Mediated Communication: A Case Study of Iranian EFL Learners

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Hedayati, Mohsen; Foomani, Elham Mohammadi

    2015-01-01

    The study reported here explores whether English as a foreign Language (EFL) learners' preferred ways of learning (i.e., learning styles) affect their task performance in computer-mediated communication (CMC). As Ellis (2010) points out, while the increasing use of different sorts of technology is witnessed in language learning contexts, it is…

  14. The dual task-cost of standing balance affects quality of life in mildly disabled MS people.

    PubMed

    Castelli, Letizia; De Luca, Francesca; Marchetti, Maria Rita; Sellitto, Giovanni; Fanelli, Fulvia; Prosperini, Luca

    2016-05-01

    The aim of this study was to explore the correlations between the dual-task cost (DTC) of standing balance and quality of life (QoL) in mildly disabled patients with multiple sclerosis (MS). In this cross-sectional study, patients affected by MS with an expanded disability status scale (EDSS) score of 3.0 or less and without an overt balance impairment were tested by means of static posturography under eyes-opened (single-task condition) and while performing the Stroop word-color test (dual-task condition), to estimate the DTC of standing balance. The self-reported 54-item MS quality of life questionnaire (MSQoL-54) was also administered to obtain a MS-specific assessment of health-related QoL. Among the 120 screened patients, 75 (53 women, 22 men) were tested. Although there was no impact of the DTC of standing balance on the physical and mental composite scores of MSQoL-54, patients who had a greater DTC of standing balance scored worse on role limitations due to physical problems (p = 0.007) and social function (p < 0.001), irrespective of demographic and other clinical characteristics including walking performance and cognitive status. However, the EDSS step and fatigue also contributed to reduced scores in these two QoL domains (p-values < 0.01). In conclusion, the phenomenon of cognitive-motor interference, investigated as DTC of standing balance, may affect specific QoL domains even in mildly disabled patients with MS and in the absence of an overt balance dysfunction.

  15. Feedback sandwiches affect perceptions but not performance.

    PubMed

    Parkes, Jay; Abercrombie, Sara; McCarty, Teresita

    2013-08-01

    The feedback sandwich technique-make positive comments; provide critique; end with positive comments-is commonly recommended to feedback givers despite scant evidence of its efficacy. These two studies (N = 20; N = 350) of written peer feedback with third-year medical students on clinical patient note-writing assignments indicate that students think feedback sandwiches positively impact subsequent performance when there is no evidence that they do. The effort necessary to produce feedback sandwiches and students' unwarranted confidence in their performance impact have implications for teaching about how to give feedback.

  16. Does television affect learning and school performance?

    PubMed

    Strasburger, V C

    1986-01-01

    Television is ubiquitous in American households and is becoming a pervasive force in the growth and development of American children. More time is spent watching television than in formal classroom instruction. Early studies, which failed to control for IQ and socioeconomic status, showed variable effects of heavy viewing on school performance. Later, better controlled studies have consistently demonstrated a significant deleterious effect of more than 1 or 2 h/day on academic performance, particularly reading scores. Innovative school programs that teach children how to watch television critically and appropriate management strategies for parents are discussed. PMID:3822948

  17. Instructions and skill level influence reliability of dual-task performance in young adults.

    PubMed

    Plummer, Prudence; Grewal, Gurtej; Najafi, Bijan; Ballard, Amy

    2015-05-01

    The purpose of this study was to assess the trial-to-trial repeatability of dual-task performance and establish the minimal detectable change (MDC95) of gait-related dual-task interference. Thirty-one healthy young adults (22.5, SD 2.1 years) performed texting and walking tasks in isolation (single-task) and in combination (dual-task). The dual-task was repeated with three different instructional sets regarding how attention should be prioritized (no-priority, gait-priority, texting-priority) in two different environments (low-distraction, high-distraction). Participants performed two trials for each condition. Trial-to-trial repeatability of gait speed, texting speed, texting accuracy, and the relative dual-task effects (DTE) on each was examined using intraclass correlation coefficients and standard error of measurement. MDC95 scores were also computed for each performance measure. Among young adults, reliability of gait speed in a challenging dual-task situation is excellent, even in a high-distraction environment. In the absence of specific task prioritization instructions, changes in dual-task gait speed greater than 0.15m/s or 11.9% DTE represent real change. Reliability of the more novel, non-gait task has poor to good reliability. Dual-task effects are more reliable when participants are given specific instructions about how to prioritize their attention. The findings also suggest that reliability of dual-task performance in a novel or challenging task is greater when individuals are more skilled at the task. Implications for clinical assessment of dual-task performance are discussed. PMID:25891529

  18. Factors affecting performance during an endurance relay.

    PubMed

    Lloyd, E L; Henderson, W; Covell, B; Bryce, G R

    1977-09-01

    A successful attempt by Edinburgh Athletic Club on the world record for the 24-hour 10-man x 1 mile relay is reported. The effects of a variety of factors on the performances of the athletes are assessed, and some physiological changes noted. In the light of these observations recommendations are made to help the planning of future record attempts.

  19. Student Profiles and Factors Affecting Performance.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Chansarkar, B. A.; Michaeloudis, A.

    2001-01-01

    Studies the profiling of first year students studying the Quantitative Methods for Business module at a British university, and makes policy recommendations to improve student performance. Indicates that the highest proportion of students are United Kingdom students, 58% of the students are male, and only 30% of the students are mature students.…

  20. Is Oral Performance Affected by Motivation?

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Soozandehfar, Seyyed Mohammad Ali

    2010-01-01

    The present investigation intends to make a comparison between integratively motivated students of English at Islamic Azad University of Shiraz and their instrumentally motivated peers in terms of their oral performance. To this end, 35 junior students (15 males and 20 females) were selected out of 54 initial participants based on their scores on…

  1. How Does Heredity Affect Athletic Performance?

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Cowart, Virginia S.

    1987-01-01

    This article reviews research regarding the effect of heredity on athletic performance. Research on twins indicates that genetic makeup may have a strong role in aerobic capacity, adaptability to training, composition of muscle tissue, and personality traits relating to competitiveness and leadership. (CB)

  2. Operant Task Performance and Corticosterone Concentrations in Rats Housed Directly on Bedding and on Wire

    PubMed Central

    Freed, Carrie; Martinez, Vicente; Sarter, Martin; DeVries, Courtney; Bergdall, Valerie

    2008-01-01

    The present experiment was designed to investigate the effect of housing conditions on task performance and corticosterone response. Two groups of male F344BNF1 rats were housed on a ventilated rack with ad libitum access to water and a restricted feeding regime. Group 1 was housed in solid-bottom caging with corn cob bedding, whereas group 2 was housed in wire-bottom caging. After learning an operant task, each rat was exposed to acute restraint followed 48 h later by exposure to continuous light. Corticosterone concentrations were determined before and after exposure to each intervention. Contrary to assumptions, housing did not affect task performance. Baseline corticosterone concentrations were similar for the 2 experimental groups, but corticosterone concentrations were significantly higher for the wire-bottom group than the solid-bottom group immediately after the restraint and remained elevated 2 d later. Corticosterone levels decreased in both groups after exposure to continuous light. Overall, the data indicate that subtle but significant differences occur in responses of rats housed on wire-bottom versus solid-bottom caging when the animals are exposed to acute restraint. PMID:18947165

  3. Method and Apparatus for Performance Optimization Through Physical Perturbation of Task Elements

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Prinzel, Lawrence J., III (Inventor); Pope, Alan T. (Inventor); Palsson, Olafur S. (Inventor); Turner, Marsha J. (Inventor)

    2016-01-01

    The invention is an apparatus and method of biofeedback training for attaining a physiological state optimally consistent with the successful performance of a task, wherein the probability of successfully completing the task is made is inversely proportional to a physiological difference value, computed as the absolute value of the difference between at least one physiological signal optimally consistent with the successful performance of the task and at least one corresponding measured physiological signal of a trainee performing the task. The probability of successfully completing the task is made inversely proportional to the physiological difference value by making one or more measurable physical attributes of the environment in which the task is performed, and upon which completion of the task depends, vary in inverse proportion to the physiological difference value.

  4. Factors affecting penetrating captive bolt gun performance.

    PubMed

    Gibson, Troy J; Mason, Charles W; Spence, Jade Y; Barker, Heather; Gregory, Neville G

    2015-01-01

    Captive bolt stunning is used for rendering livestock insensible at slaughter. The mechanical factors relating to performance of 6 penetrating captive bolt gun (CBG) models were examined. The Matador Super Sécurit 3000 and the .25 Cash Euro Stunner had the highest kinetic energy values (443 J and 412 J, respectively) of the CBGs tested. Ninety percent (27/30) of CBGs held at a government gun repository (United Kingdom) were found to have performed at a normal standard for the model, while 53% (10/19) of commercial contractor CBGs tested were found to underperform for the gun model. When the .22 Cash Special was fired 500 times at 4 shots per min, the gun reached a peak temperature of 88.8°C after 2.05 hr. Repeat firing during extended periods significantly reduced the performance of the CBG. When deciding on the appropriate CBG/cartridge combination, the kinetic energy delivered to the head of the nonhuman animal, bolt penetration depth, and species/animal type must be considered. It is recommended that CBGs are routinely checked for wear to the bolt and barrel if they are repeatedly fired in a session.

  5. Affective and Deliberative Processes in Risky Choice: Age Differences in Risk Taking in the Columbia Card Task

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Figner, Bernd; Mackinlay, Rachael J.; Wilkening, Friedrich; Weber, Elke U.

    2009-01-01

    The authors investigated risk taking and underlying information use in 13- to 16- and 17- to 19-year-old adolescents and in adults in 4 experiments, using a novel dynamic risk-taking task, the Columbia Card Task (CCT). The authors investigated risk taking under differential involvement of affective versus deliberative processes with 2 versions of…

  6. The Role of Positive Affect in Syllogism Performance.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Melton, Jeffrey R.

    1995-01-01

    Examined process mediating the effect of positive mood on performance of a cognitive task. Positive mood subjects performed significantly worse on a set of syllogisms than control subjects. Results are consistent with accounts arguing that people in positive moods expend less effort. (JBJ)

  7. Ready to rumble: how team personality composition and task conflict interact to improve performance.

    PubMed

    Bradley, Bret H; Klotz, Anthony C; Postlethwaite, Bennett E; Brown, Kenneth G

    2013-03-01

    Although prior work has proposed a number of conditions under which task conflict in teams may improve performance, composition variables have been left unexplored. Given the effects of personality traits on team processes and outcomes demonstrated in prior work, investigating whether specific personality compositions influence the effect of task conflict on team performance is critical to researchers' understanding of conflict in teams. Our results indicate that team-level averages of both openness to experience and emotional stability function as moderators of the relationship between task conflict and team performance. Specifically, task conflict had a positive impact on performance in teams with high levels of openness or emotional stability; in contrast, task conflict had a negative impact on performance in teams with low levels of openness or emotional stability. Thus, when task conflict emerges, teams composed of members who are open minded or emotionally stable are best able to leverage conflict to improve performance. Implications for theory and practice are discussed.

  8. Thermal effects on human performance in office environment measured by integrating task speed and accuracy.

    PubMed

    Lan, Li; Wargocki, Pawel; Lian, Zhiwei

    2014-05-01

    We have proposed a method in which the speed and accuracy can be integrated into one metric of human performance. This was achieved by designing a performance task in which the subjects receive feedback on their performance by informing them whether they have committed errors, and if did, they can only proceed when the errors are corrected. Traditionally, the tasks are presented without giving this feedback and thus the speed and accuracy are treated separately. The method was examined in a subjective experiment with thermal environment as the prototypical example. During exposure in an office, 12 subjects performed tasks under two thermal conditions (neutral & warm) repeatedly. The tasks were presented with and without feedback on errors committed, as outlined above. The results indicate that there was a greater decrease in task performance due to thermal discomfort when feedback was given, compared to the performance of tasks presented without feedback.

  9. Performance on a virtual reality angled laparoscope task correlates with spatial ability of trainees.

    PubMed

    Rosenthal, Rachel; Hamel, Christian; Oertli, Daniel; Demartines, Nicolas; Gantert, Walter A

    2010-08-01

    The aim of the present study was to investigate whether trainees' performance on a virtual reality angled laparoscope navigation task correlates with scores obtained on a validated conventional test of spatial ability. 56 participants of a surgery workshop performed an angled laparoscope navigation task on the Xitact LS 500 virtual reality Simulator. Performance parameters were correlated with the score of a validated paper-and-pencil test of spatial ability. Performance at the conventional spatial ability test significantly correlated with performance at the virtual reality task for overall task score (p < 0.001), task completion time (p < 0.001) and economy of movement (p = 0.035), not for endoscope travel speed (p = 0.947). In conclusion, trainees' performance in a standardized virtual reality camera navigation task correlates with their innate spatial ability. This VR session holds potential to serve as an assessment tool for trainees.

  10. Concurrent cognitive task may improve motor work performance and reduce muscle fatigue.

    PubMed

    Evstigneeva, Maria; Aleksandrov, Aleksandr; Mathiassen, Svend Erik; Lyskov, Eugene

    2012-01-01

    Performance of certain cognitive tasks either during physical load or in rest pauses between boosts might lead to slowing of muscle fatigue and fatigue related decline in performance. Seventeen right-handed healthy volunteers (age 24 ± 1.4, 8 males) participated in this study, aiming to investigate the effect of the level of the cognitive information processing - 1) passive perception of audio stimuli, 2) active stimuli discrimination, 3) active stimuli discrimination following motor response - on motor task performance (handgrip test 30% and 7% of MVC) and muscle fatigue development. Cognitive tasks show the following effects on motor work: i) Perceived fatigue during 30 % MVC (fatiguing) condition developed slower if participant pressed button in response to deviant acoustic stimuli, as compared to passive listening. Counting task, an active task without motor component, took the intermediate position and did not differ significantly from two other cognitive tasks. ii) MVC after 30% MVC (fatiguing) condition tended to decrease stronger when accompanied with passive listening in comparison with both active tasks. iii) Motor task performance during 30% MVC (fatiguing) condition was better for active cognitive task with motor component than for passive task. Active task without motor component took the intermediate position and did not differ significantly from both the other cognitive tasks. PMID:22317158

  11. The Effects of Interspersed Maintenance Tasks on Academic Performance in a Severe Childhood Stroke Victim.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Koegel, Lynn Kern; Koegel, Robert L.

    1986-01-01

    The study examined effects of task-sequencing variables on the academic performance of an 8-year-old severe stroke victim. Previously acquired (maintenance) task trials were systematically interspersed among new (acquisition) task trials. Results showed improvements in both academic responding and subjective ratings of motivation in spelling,…

  12. The Effects of Differential Goal Weights on the Performance of a Complex Financial Task.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Edmister, Robert O.; Locke, Edwin A.

    1987-01-01

    Determined whether people could obtain outcomes on a complex task that would be in line with differential goal weights corresponding to different aspects of the task. Bank lending officers were run through lender-simulation exercises. Five performance goals were weighted. Demonstrated effectiveness of goal setting with complex tasks, using group…

  13. Conjunctive Continuous Performance Task (CCPT)--A Pure Measure of Sustained Attention

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Shalev, Lilach; Ben-Simon, Anat; Mevorach, Carmel; Cohen, Yoav; Tsal, Yehoshua

    2011-01-01

    Among the large variety of attentional tasks that have been used to study sustained attention, the Continuous Performance Task (CPT) is perhaps the most widely used. Despite substantial differences in task characteristics and demands, all CPT paradigms have been referred to as measures of sustained attention. In the present study we introduce a…

  14. Operational testing of a figure of merit for overall task performance

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Lemay, Moira

    1990-01-01

    An overall indicator or figure of merit (FOM), for the quality of pilot performance is needed to define optimal workload levels, predict system failure, measure the impact of new automation in the cockpit, and define the relative contributions of subtasks to overall task performance. A normative FOM was developed based on the calculation of a standard score for each component of a complex task. It reflected some effects, detailed in an earlier study, of the introduction of new data link technology into the cockpit. Since the technique showed promise, further testing was done. A new set of data was obtained using the recently developed Multi-Attribute Task Battery. This is a complex battery consisting of four tasks which can be varied in task demand, and on which performance measures can be obtained. This battery was presented to 12 subjects in a 20 minute trial at each of three levels of workload or task demand, and performance measures collected on all four tasks. The NASA-TLX workload rating scale was presented at minutes 6, 12, and 18, of each trial. A figure of merit was then obtained for each run of the battery by calculating a mean, SD, and standard score for each task. Each task contributed its own proportion to the overall FOM, and relative contributions changed with increasing workload. Thus, the FOM shows the effect of task changes, not only on the individual task that is changed, but also on the performance of other tasks and of the whole task. The cost to other tasks of maintaining constant performance on an individual task can be quantified.

  15. Performance of Healthy Participants on the Iowa Gambling Task

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Steingroever, Helen; Wetzels, Ruud; Horstmann, Annette; Neumann, Jane; Wagenmakers, Eric-Jan

    2013-01-01

    The Iowa Gambling Task (IGT; Bechara, Damasio, Damasio, & Anderson, 1994) is often used to assess decision-making deficits in clinical populations. The interpretation of the results hinges on 3 key assumptions: (a) healthy participants learn to prefer the good options over the bad options; (b) healthy participants show homogeneous choice behavior;…

  16. Increasing On-Task Performance for Students with ADHD

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Fowler, Mary

    2010-01-01

    Inattention and/or impulsivity and hyperactivity are the core symptoms of attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD). In the day-to-day grind of teaching, when problems emerge, the teachers' best intentions and sensitivities are tested. Fidgety, loud, disorganized, disruptive, hurried, careless, and off-task behavior coupled with messy,…

  17. Early Electro-Cortical Correlates of Inspection Time Task Performance

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Hill, David; Saville, Christopher W. N.; Kiely, Siobhan; Roberts, Mark V.; Boehm, Stephan G.; Haenschel, Corinna; Klein, Christoph

    2011-01-01

    The concept of general intelligence ("g") summarizes the well established finding that scores on separate cognitive tasks are positively correlated, indicating a trait common to many aspects of information processing. Inspection time is a well-established correlate of IQ, where those of a higher IQ can correctly identify a briefly presented…

  18. Work Group Performance on Production Operations Management Tasks.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Brauchle, Paul E.; Evans, Richard V., Jr.

    1998-01-01

    A class of 71 industrial technology students was divided into either self-selected (homogeneous) work groups or randomly assigned (heterogeneous) groups. The heterogeneous groups had significantly better peer ratings and adjusted scores on their work tasks, but not better raw scores. Despite evidence of higher achievement in random groups,…

  19. Swimming Pool Hygiene: Self-Monitoring, Task Clarification, and Performance Feedback Increase Lifeguard Cleaning Behaviors

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Rose, Henry M. S.; Ludwig, Timothy D.

    2009-01-01

    The effects of task clarification, self-monitoring, and performance feedback on cleaning behaviors of 9 lifeguards in 3 performance areas (vacuuming, lobby tidying, and pool deck maintenance) were investigated using an ABA reversal design at a county swim complex. A specific task in each performance area was used as a behavioral control. Following…

  20. 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…

  1. The Attentional Boost Effect: Transient Increases in Attention to One Task Enhance Performance in a Second Task

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Swallow, Khena M.; Jiang, Yuhong V.

    2010-01-01

    Recent work on event perception suggests that perceptual processing increases when events change. An important question is how such changes influence the way other information is processed, particularly during dual-task performance. In this study, participants monitored a long series of distractor items for an occasional target as they…

  2. Understanding the Effects of Long-duration Space Flight on Astronant Functional Task Performance

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Bloomberg, Jacob J.; Batson, Crystal D.; Buxton, Roxanne E.; Feiveson, Al H.; Kofman, Igor S.; Lee, Stuart M. C.; Miller, Chris A.; Mulavara, Ajitkumar P.; Peters, Brian T.; Phillips, Tiffany; Platts, Steven H.; Ploutz-Snyder, Lori L.; Reschke, Millard F.; Ryder, Jeff W.; Stenger, Michael B.; Taylor, Laura C.

    2014-01-01

    Space flight is known to cause alterations in multiple physiological systems including changes in sensorimotor, cardiovascular, and neuromuscular systems. These physiological changes cause balance, gait and visual disturbances, cardiovascular deconditioning, and loss of muscle mass and strength. These changes may affect a crewmember's ability to perform critical mission tasks immediately after landing on a planetary surface. To understand how changes in physiological function affect functional performance, an interdisciplinary pre- and postflight testing regimen, Functional Task Test (FTT), was developed to systematically evaluate both astronaut functional performance and related physiological changes. Ultimately this information will be used to assess performance risks and inform the design of countermeasures for exploration class missions. We are currently conducting the FTT study on International Space Station (ISS) crewmembers before and after 6-month expeditions. Additionally, in a corresponding study we are using the FTT protocol on subjects before and after 70 days of 6deg head-down bed-rest as an analog for space flight. Bed-rest provides the opportunity for us to investigate the role of prolonged axial body unloading in isolation from the other physiological effects produced by exposure to the microgravity environment of space flight. Therefore, the bed rest analog allows us to investigate the impact of body unloading on both functional tasks and on the underlying physiological factors that lead to decrement in performance and then compare them with the results obtained in our space flight study. Functional tests included 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 included assessments of postural and gait control, dynamic visual acuity, fine motor control, plasma volume, heart rate, blood pressure

  3. Effects of performing two visual tasks on single-trial detection of event-related potentials.

    PubMed

    Cecotti, Hubert; Eckstein, Miguel P; Giesbrecht, Barry

    2012-01-01

    The detection of event-related potentials (ERPs) in brain-computer interface (BCI) depends on the ability of the subject to pay attention to specific stimuli presented during the BCI task. For healthy users, a BCI shall be used as a complement to other existing devices, which involve the response to other tasks. Those tasks may impair selective attention, particularly if the stimuli have the same modality e.g. visual. It is therefore critical to analyze how single-trial detection of brain evoked response is impaired by the addition of tasks concerning the same modality. We tested 10 healthy participants using an application that has two visual target detection tasks. The first one corresponds to a rapid serial visual presentation paradigm where target detection is achieved by brain-evoked single-trial detection in the recorded electroencephalogram (EEG) signal. The second task is the detection of a visual event on a tactical map by a behavioral response. These tasks were tested individually (single task) and in parallel (dual-task). Whereas the performance of single-trial detection was not impaired between single and dual-task conditions, the behavioral performance decreased during the dual-task condition. These results quantify the performance drop that can occur in a dual-task system using both brain-evoked responses and behavioral responses. PMID:23366242

  4. Altering the primacy bias--how does a prior task affect mismatch negativity?

    PubMed

    Mullens, Daniel; Woodley, Jessica; Whitson, Lisa; Provost, Alexander; Heathcote, Andrew; Winkler, István; Todd, Juanita

    2014-05-01

    The role in which two tones are first encountered in an unattended oddball sequence affects how deviance detection, reflected by mismatch negativity, treats them later when the roles reverse: a "primacy bias." We tested whether this effect is modulated by previous behavioral relevance assigned to the two tones. To this end, sequences in which the roles of the two tones alternated were preceded by a go/no-go task in which tones were presented with equal probability. Half of the participants were asked to respond to the short sounds, the other half to long sounds. Primacy bias was initially abolished but returned dependent upon the go-stimulus that the participant was assigned. Results demonstrate a long-term impact of prior learning on deviance detection, and that even when prior importance/equivalence is learned, the bias ultimately returns. Results are discussed in terms of persistent go-stimulus specific changes in responsiveness to sound.

  5. Effects of task performance, helping, voice, and organizational loyalty on performance appraisal ratings.

    PubMed

    Whiting, Steven W; Podsakoff, Philip M; Pierce, Jason R

    2008-01-01

    Despite the fact that several studies have investigated the relationship between organizational citizenship behavior and performance appraisal ratings, the vast majority of these studies have been cross-sectional, correlational investigations conducted in organizational settings that do not allow researchers to establish the causal nature of this relationship. To address this lack of knowledge regarding causality, the authors conducted 2 studies designed to investigate the effects of task performance, helping behavior, voice, and organizational loyalty on performance appraisal evaluations. Findings demonstrated that each of these forms of behavior has significant effects on performance evaluation decisions and suggest that additional attention should be directed at both voice and organizational loyalty as important forms of citizenship behavior aimed at the organization.

  6. Affectively Salient Meaning in Random Noise: A Task Sensitive to Psychosis Liability

    PubMed Central

    Galdos, Mariana; Simons, Claudia; Fernandez-Rivas, Aranzazu; Wichers, Marieke; Peralta, Concepción; Lataster, Tineke; Amer, Guillermo; Myin-Germeys, Inez; Allardyce, Judith; Gonzalez-Torres, Miguel Angel; van Os, Jim

    2011-01-01

    Stable differences in the tendency to attribute meaning and emotional value to experience may represent an indicator of liability to psychosis. A brief task was developed assessing variation in detecting affectively meaningful speech (speech illusion) in neutral random signals (white noise) and the degree to which this was associated with psychometric and familial vulnerability for psychosis. Thirty patients, 28 of their siblings, and 307 controls participated. The rate of speech illusion was compared between cases and controls. In controls, the association between speech illusion and interview-based positive schizotypy was assessed. The hypothesis of a dose-response increase in rate of speech illusion across increasing levels of familial vulnerability for psychosis (controls, siblings of patients, and patients) was examined. Patients were more likely to display speech illusions than controls (odds ratio [OR] = 4.0, 95% confidence interval [CI] = 1.4–11.7), also after controlling for neurocognitive variables (OR = 3.8, 95% CI = 1.04–14.1). The case-control difference was more accentuated for speech illusion perceived as affectively salient (positively or negatively appraised) than for neutrally appraised speech illusions. Speech illusion in the controls was strongly associated with positive schizotypy but not with negative schizotypy. In addition, the rate of speech illusion increased with increasing level of familial risk for psychotic disorder. The data suggest that the white noise task may be sensitive to psychometric and familial vulnerability for psychosis associated with alterations in top-down processing and/or salience attribution. PMID:20360211

  7. Effects of environmental enrichment on cognitive performance of pigs in a spatial holeboard discrimination task.

    PubMed

    Grimberg-Henrici, Charlotte G E; Vermaak, Paul; Bolhuis, J Elizabeth; Nordquist, Rebecca E; van der Staay, F Josef

    2016-03-01

    This study investigated the effects of environmental enrichment on the cognitive performance of female conventional farm (growing) pigs in a spatial holeboard task. Ten pairs of littermates matched for weight were used. From each litter, one piglet was randomly assigned to a barren environment; the other was assigned to an enriched environment from 4 weeks of age. The enriched environment was double the size of the barren environment, had a floor covered with straw, a rooting area filled with peat, and one of the four different enrichment toys which were exchanged daily. Starting at 11 weeks of age, all pigs were tested in a spatial holeboard discrimination task in which 4 out of 16 holes were baited. Furthermore, basal salivary cortisol levels of all pigs were determined after the end of all testing. All pigs were able to acquire the pattern of baited holes (acquisition phase, 40 trials) and the diagonally mirrored pattern (reversal phase, 20 trials). During the acquisition phase, the reference memory performance of the enriched-housed pigs was better than that of their barren-housed littermates, i.e. they reduced visits to the unbaited set of holes. During the reversal phase, enriched-housed pigs had a better general working memory performance than the barren-housed pigs as indicated by reduced revisits to holes already visited during a trial, irrespective of whether they were of the baited or the unbaited set. The enriched-housed pigs also searched for the hidden bait faster during both phases. The environments did not affect basal salivary cortisol levels. In conclusion, environmental enrichment slightly improved the cognitive performance of pigs in a spatial learning task. We hypothesise that the long period of habituation to and testing in the holeboard acted as enrichment that partially reduced the effects of barren housing.

  8. Type 1 Diabetes Modifies Brain Activation in Young Patients While Performing Visuospatial Working Memory Tasks

    PubMed Central

    Gallardo-Moreno, Geisa B.; González-Garrido, Andrés A.; Gudayol-Ferré, Esteban; Guàrdia-Olmos, Joan

    2015-01-01

    In recent years, increasing attention has been paid to the effects of Type 1 Diabetes (T1D) on cognitive functions. T1D onset usually occurs during childhood, so it is possible that the brain could be affected during neurodevelopment. We selected young patients of normal intelligence with T1D onset during neurodevelopment, no complications from diabetes, and adequate glycemic control. The purpose of this study was to compare the neural BOLD activation pattern in a group of patients with T1D versus healthy control subjects while performing a visuospatial working memory task. Sixteen patients and 16 matched healthy control subjects participated. There was no significant statistical difference in behavioral performance between the groups, but, in accordance with our hypothesis, results showed distinct brain activation patterns. Control subjects presented the expected activations related to the task, whereas the patients had greater activation in the prefrontal inferior cortex, basal ganglia, posterior cerebellum, and substantia nigra. These different patterns could be due to compensation mechanisms that allow them to maintain a behavioral performance similar to that of control subjects. PMID:26266268

  9. Balancing cognitive control: how observed movements influence motor performance in a task with balance constraints.

    PubMed

    Verrel, Julius; Lisofsky, Nina; Kühn, Simone

    2014-07-01

    We investigated the influence of observed movements on executed movements in a task requiring lifting one foot from the floor while maintaining whole-body balance. Sixteen young participants (20-30 years) performed foot lift movements, which were either cued symbolically by a letter (L/R, indicating to lift the left/right foot) or by a short movie showing a foot lift movement. In the symbol cue condition, stimuli from the movie cue condition were used as distractors, and vice versa. Anticipatory postural adjustments (APAs) and actual foot lifts were recorded using force plates and optical motion capture. Foot lift responses were generally faster in response to the movie compared to the symbol cue condition. Moreover, incongruent movement distractors interfered with performance in the symbol cue condition, as shown by longer response times and increased number of APAs. Latencies of the first (potentially wrong) APA in a trial were shorter for movie compared to symbol cues but were not affected by cue-distractor congruency. Amplitude of the first APA was smaller when it was followed by additional APAs compared to trials with a single APA. Our results show that automatic imitation tendencies are integrated with postural control in a task with balance constraints. Analysis of the number, timing and amplitude of APAs indicates that conflicts between intended and observed movements are not resolved at a purely cognitive level but directly influence overt motor performance, emphasizing the intimate link between perception, cognition and action. PMID:24880223

  10. Approximations to ideal-observer performance on signal-detection tasks.

    PubMed

    Clarkson, E; Barrett, H H

    2000-04-10

    The ideal-observer performance, as measured by the area under the receiver's operating characteristic curve, is computed for six examples of signal-detection tasks. Exact values for this quantity, as well as approximations based on the signal-to-noise ratio of the log likelihood and the likelihood-generating function, are found. The noise models considered are normal, exponential, Poisson, and two-sided exponential. The signal may affect the mean or the variance in each case. It is found that the approximation from the likelihood-generating function tracks well with the exact area, whereas the log-likelihood signal-to-noise approximation can fail badly. The signal-to-noise ratio of the likelihood ratio itself is also computed for each example to demonstrate that it is not a good measure of ideal-observer performance. PMID:18345075

  11. Learners' Perceptions of the Benefits of Voice Tool-Based Tasks on Their Spoken Performance

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Wilches, Astrid

    2014-01-01

    The purpose of this study is to investigate learners' perceptions of the benefits of tasks using voice tools to reinforce their oral skills. Additionally, this study seeks to determine what aspects of task design affected the students' perceptions. Beginner learners aged 18 to 36 with little or no experience in the use of technological tools for…

  12. Investigating graphesthesia task performance in the biological relatives of schizophrenia patients.

    PubMed

    Chang, Bernard P; Lenzenweger, Mark F

    2004-01-01

    This study compared the performance of 39 biological relatives of persons with schizophrenia to that of 30 normal adult controls on graphesthesia processing, a complex somatosensory processing task. The relatives performed significantly worse on the graphesthesia task compared to the healthy controls. The relatives and control subjects, however, did not differ on two neurocognitive control tasks. These data are interpreted within the context of a somatosensory deficit linked to schizophrenia liability.

  13. Predicted versus experienced workload and performance on a supervisory control task

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Battiste, V.; Hart, S. G.

    1985-01-01

    The multitask simulation of a supervisory control system was examined in order to evaluate the ability of operators to predict the workload and performance impact of unfamiliar task features, using their basic knowledge and specific information provided before each scenario. Task difficulty and experienced workload were varied by manipulating the number of elements per task, the number of tasks, task schedule, and availability of task elements for performance. The results have indicated that an operator might correctly predict the workload of a realistically complex task if (1) he is familiar with the basic system, and (2) the design, functional requirements, and operational procedures of the proposed modifications are described clearly. He is less able to predict unfamiliar rate or schedule complexity manipulations for which timing is an important element.

  14. Interregional cerebral metabolic associativity during a continuous performance task Part I: Healthy adults

    PubMed Central

    Willis, Mark W.; Benson, Brenda E.; Ketter, Terence A.; Kimbrell, Tim A.; George, Mark S.; Speer, Andrew M.; Herscovitch, Peter; Post, Robert M.

    2009-01-01

    One emerging hypothesis regarding psychiatric illnesses is that they arise from the dysregulation of normal circuits or neuroanatomical patterns. In order to study mood disorders within this framework, we explored normal metabolic associativity patterns in healthy volunteers as a prelude to examining the same relationships in affectively ill patients (Part II). We applied correlational analyses to regional brain activity as measured with FDG-PET during an auditory continuous performance task (CPT) in 66 healthy volunteers. This simple attention task controlled for brain activity that otherwise might vary amongst affective and cognitive states. There were highly significant positive correlations between homologous regions in the two hemispheres in thalamic, extrapyramidal, orbital frontal, medial temporal and cerebellar areas. Dorsal frontal, lateral temporal, cingulate, and especially insula, and inferior parietal areas showed less significant homologous associativity, suggesting more specific lateralized function. The medulla and bilateral thalami exhibited the most diverse interregional associations. A general pattern emerged of cortical regions covarying inversely with subcortical structures, particularly the frontal cortex with cerebellum, amygdala and thalamus. These analytical data may help to confirm known functional and neuroanatomical relationships, elucidate others as yet unreported, and serve as a basis for comparison to patients with psychiatric illness. PMID:18799294

  15. Differential effects of wakeful rest, music and video game playing on working memory performance in the n-back task.

    PubMed

    Kuschpel, Maxim S; Liu, Shuyan; Schad, Daniel J; Heinzel, Stephan; Heinz, Andreas; Rapp, Michael A

    2015-01-01

    The interruption of learning processes by breaks filled with diverse activities is common in everyday life. We investigated the effects of active computer gaming and passive relaxation (rest and music) breaks on working memory performance. Young adults were exposed to breaks involving (i) eyes-open resting, (ii) listening to music and (iii) playing the video game "Angry Birds" before performing the n-back working memory task. Based on linear mixed-effects modeling, we found that playing the "Angry Birds" video game during a short learning break led to a decline in task performance over the course of the task as compared to eyes-open resting and listening to music, although overall task performance was not impaired. This effect was associated with high levels of daily mind wandering and low self-reported ability to concentrate. These findings indicate that video games can negatively affect working memory performance over time when played in between learning tasks. We suggest further investigation of these effects because of their relevance to everyday activity. PMID:26579055

  16. Differential effects of wakeful rest, music and video game playing on working memory performance in the n-back task

    PubMed Central

    Kuschpel, Maxim S.; Liu, Shuyan; Schad, Daniel J.; Heinzel, Stephan; Heinz, Andreas; Rapp, Michael A.

    2015-01-01

    The interruption of learning processes by breaks filled with diverse activities is common in everyday life. We investigated the effects of active computer gaming and passive relaxation (rest and music) breaks on working memory performance. Young adults were exposed to breaks involving (i) eyes-open resting, (ii) listening to music and (iii) playing the video game “Angry Birds” before performing the n-back working memory task. Based on linear mixed-effects modeling, we found that playing the “Angry Birds” video game during a short learning break led to a decline in task performance over the course of the task as compared to eyes-open resting and listening to music, although overall task performance was not impaired. This effect was associated with high levels of daily mind wandering and low self-reported ability to concentrate. These findings indicate that video games can negatively affect working memory performance over time when played in between learning tasks. We suggest further investigation of these effects because of their relevance to everyday activity. PMID:26579055

  17. Differential effects of wakeful rest, music and video game playing on working memory performance in the n-back task.

    PubMed

    Kuschpel, Maxim S; Liu, Shuyan; Schad, Daniel J; Heinzel, Stephan; Heinz, Andreas; Rapp, Michael A

    2015-01-01

    The interruption of learning processes by breaks filled with diverse activities is common in everyday life. We investigated the effects of active computer gaming and passive relaxation (rest and music) breaks on working memory performance. Young adults were exposed to breaks involving (i) eyes-open resting, (ii) listening to music and (iii) playing the video game "Angry Birds" before performing the n-back working memory task. Based on linear mixed-effects modeling, we found that playing the "Angry Birds" video game during a short learning break led to a decline in task performance over the course of the task as compared to eyes-open resting and listening to music, although overall task performance was not impaired. This effect was associated with high levels of daily mind wandering and low self-reported ability to concentrate. These findings indicate that video games can negatively affect working memory performance over time when played in between learning tasks. We suggest further investigation of these effects because of their relevance to everyday activity.

  18. The effects of voice and manual control mode on dual task performance

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Wickens, C. D.; Zenyuh, J.; Culp, V.; Marshak, W.

    1986-01-01

    Two fundamental principles of human performance, compatibility and resource competition, are combined with two structural dichotomies in the human information processing system, manual versus voice output, and left versus right cerebral hemisphere, in order to predict the optimum combination of voice and manual control with either hand, for time-sharing performance of a dicrete and continuous task. Eight right handed male subjected performed a discrete first-order tracking task, time-shared with an auditorily presented Sternberg Memory Search Task. Each task could be controlled by voice, or by the left or right hand, in all possible combinations except for a dual voice mode. When performance was analyzed in terms of a dual-task decrement from single task control conditions, the following variables influenced time-sharing efficiency in diminishing order of magnitude, (1) the modality of control, (discrete manual control of tracking was superior to discrete voice control of tracking and the converse was true with the memory search task), (2) response competition, (performance was degraded when both tasks were responded manually), (3) hemispheric competition, (performance degraded whenever two tasks were controlled by the left hemisphere) (i.e., voice or right handed control). The results confirm the value of predictive models invoice control implementation.

  19. The Impact of Moderate Sleep Loss on Neurophysiologic Signals during Working-Memory Task Performance

    PubMed Central

    Smith, Michael E.; McEvoy, Linda K.; Gevins, Alan

    2006-01-01

    Study Objectives This study examined how sleep loss affects neurophysiologic signals related to attention and working memory. Design Subjective sleepiness, resting-state electroencephalogram, and behavior and electroencephalogram during performance of working-memory tasks were recorded in a within-subject, repeated-measures design. Setting Data collection occurred in a computerized laboratory setting. Participants Sixteen healthy adults (mean age, 26 years; 8 female) Interventions Data from alert daytime baseline tests were compared with data from tests during a late-night, extended-wakefulness session that spanned up to 21 hours of sleep deprivation. Measurements and Results Alertness measured both subjectively and electrophysiologically decreased monotonically with increasing sleep deprivation. A lack of alertness-related changes in electroencephalographic measures of the overall mental effort exerted during task execution indicated that participants attempted to maintain high levels of performance throughout the late-night tests. Despite such continued effort, responses became slower, more variable, and more error prone within 1 hour after participants' normal time of sleep onset. This behavior failure was accompanied by significant degradation of event-related brain potentials related to the transient focusing of attention. Conclusions Moderate sleep loss compromises the function of neural circuits critical to subsecond attention allocation during working-memory tasks, even when an effort is made to maintain wakefulness and performance. Multivariate analyses indicate that combinations of working-memory-related behavior and neurophysiologic measures can be sensitive enough to permit reliable detection of such effects of sleep loss in individuals. Similar methods might prove useful for assessment of functional alertness in patients with sleep disorders. PMID:12405615

  20. Tasks Essential to Successful Performance as a Tobacco Producer. Summary of Research.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Carter, David M.; And Others

    The major purpose of the occupational survey was to identify the skills which are performed and essential for success for a tobacco producer. The specific objectives of this survey were: (1) develop and validate an initial task inventory for the tobacco producer, (2) identify the specific tasks performed by the tobacco producer, and (3) determine…

  1. Cognitive Load Theory: An Empirical Study of Anxiety and Task Performance in Language Learning

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Chen, I-Jung; Chang, Chi-Cheng

    2009-01-01

    Introduction: This study explores the relationship among three variables--cognitive load, foreign language anxiety, and task performance. Cognitive load refers to the load imposed on working memory while performing a particular task. The authors hypothesized that anxiety consumes the resources of working memory, leaving less capacity for cognitive…

  2. Development and Validation of an Admission Test Designed to Assess Samples of Performance on Academic Tasks

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Tanilon, Jenny; Segers, Mien; Vedder, Paul; Tillema, Harm

    2009-01-01

    This study illustrates the development and validation of an admission test, labeled as Performance Samples on Academic Tasks in Educational Sciences (PSAT-Ed), designed to assess samples of performance on academic tasks characteristic of those that would eventually be encountered by examinees in an Educational Sciences program. The test was based…

  3. The Effects of Background Music on Primary School Pupils' Task Performance.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Hallam, Susan; Price, John; Katsarou, Georgia

    2002-01-01

    Presents two studies that explored the effects of music perceived as calming and relaxing on arithmetic and memory performance tasks of 10- to 12-year-old children. Reports that the calming music led to better performance on both tasks when compared with the non-music condition. Includes references. (CMK)

  4. Task Goal Attributes, n Achievement, and Supervisory Performance. Technical Report No. 30.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Steers, Richard M.

    A review of the research literature on goal-setting in organizational settings reveals that goal-setting on an individual job results in better task performance. However, the processes behind their effectiveness is unclear. For example, how are various job attributes of task goals related to performance, and how do various individual differences…

  5. Working memory and acquisition of implicit knowledge by imagery training, without actual task performance.

    PubMed

    Helene, A F; Xavier, G F

    2006-04-28

    This study investigated acquisition of a mirror-reading skill via imagery training, without the actual performance of a mirror-reading task. In experiment I, healthy volunteers simulated writing on an imaginary, transparent screen placed at eye level, which could be read by an experimenter facing the subject. Performance of this irrelevant motor task required the subject to imagine the letters inverted, as if seen in a mirror from their own point of view (imagery training). A second group performed the same imagery training interspersed with a complex, secondary spelling and counting task. A third, control, group simply wrote the words as they would normally appear from their own point of view. After training with 300 words, all subjects were tested in a mirror-reading task using 60 non-words, constructed according to acceptable letter combinations of the Portuguese language. Compared with control subjects, those exposed to imagery training, including those who switched between imagery and the complex task, exhibited shorter reading times in the mirror-reading task. Experiment II employed a 2 x 3 design, including two training conditions (imagery and actual mirror-reading) and three competing task conditions (a spelling and counting switching task, a visual working memory concurrent task, and no concurrent task). Training sessions were interspersed with mirror-reading testing sessions for non-words, allowing evaluation of the mirror-reading acquisition process during training. The subjects exposed to imagery training acquired the mirror-reading skill as quickly as those exposed to the actual mirror-reading task. Further, performance of concurrent tasks together with actual mirror-reading training severely disrupted mirror-reading skill acquisition; this interference effect was not seen in subjects exposed to imagery training and performance of the switching and the concurrent tasks. These results unequivocally show that acquisition of implicit skills by top

  6. Personality interacts with implicit affect to predict performance in analytic versus holistic processing.

    PubMed

    Kazén, Miguel; Kuhl, Julius; Quirin, Markus

    2015-06-01

    Both theoretical approaches and empirical evidence suggest that negative affect fosters analytic processing, whereas positive affect fosters holistic processing, but these effects are inconsistent. We aim to show that (a) differences in affect regulation abilities ("action orientation") and (b) implicit more so than self-reported affect assessment need to be considered to advance our understanding of these processes. Forty participants were asked to verify whether a word was correctly or incorrectly spelled to measure analytic processing, as well as to intuitively assess whether sets of three words were coherent (remote associates task) to measure holistic processing. As expected, implicit but not explicit negative affect interacted with low action orientation ("state orientation") to predict higher d' performance in word spelling, whereas implicit but not explicit positive affect interacted with high action orientation to predict higher d' performance in coherence judgments for word triads. Results are interpreted according to personality systems interaction theory. These findings suggest that affect and affect changes should be measured explicitly and implicitly to investigate affect-cognition interactions. Moreover, they suggest that good affect regulators benefit from positive affect for holistic processing, whereas bad affect regulators benefit from negative affect for analytical processing. PMID:24725069

  7. Examination of the Role of Expectancies on Task Performance in College Students Concerned about ADHD.

    PubMed

    Wei, Christina; Suhr, Julie A

    2015-01-01

    Prior research has shown that performance on cognitive tasks can be influenced by expectations (Smith & Sullivan, 2003 ; Suhr & Gunstad, 2002 , 2005 ). The current study examined whether cuing a belief about the diagnostic saliency of a cognitive task among young adults who expressed concern about having attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) influenced task performance. Participants were randomly assigned to either receive neutral directions or be cued to a belief that the task had diagnostic saliency prior to completing a working-memory task. Supporting our hypothesis, college students with higher prestudy report of ADHD symptoms who were cued with a belief about the diagnostic saliency of the task performed worse compared with students who received neutral instructions. As many researchers and clinicians currently rely exclusively on self-reported symptoms and neuropsychological tests to diagnose ADHD, our findings highlight the importance of comprehensive assessment for provision of appropriate clinical services to adults presenting with ADHD concerns.

  8. Perceived control in rhesus monkeys (Macaca mulatta) - Enhanced video-task performance

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Washburn, David A.; Hopkins, William D.; Rumbaugh, Duane M.

    1991-01-01

    This investigation was designed to determine whether perceived control effects found in humans extend to rhesus monkeys (Macaca mulatta) tested in a video-task format, using a computer-generated menu program, SELECT. Choosing one of the options in SELECT resulted in presentation of five trials of a corresponding task and subsequent return to the menu. In Experiments 1-3, the animals exhibited stable, meaningful response patterns in this task (i.e., they made choices). In Experiment 4, performance on tasks that were selected by the animals significantly exceeded performance on identical tasks when assigned by the experimenter under comparable conditions (e.g., time of day, order, variety). The reliable and significant advantage for performance on selected tasks, typically found in humans, suggests that rhesus monkeys were able to perceive the availability of choices.

  9. Student performance on argumentation task in the Swedish National Assessment in science

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Jönsson, Anders

    2016-07-01

    The aim of this study is to investigate the influence of content knowledge on students' socio-scientific argumentation in the Swedish National Assessment in biology, chemistry and physics for 12-year-olds. In Sweden, the assessment of socio-scientific argumentation has been a major part of the National Assessment during three consecutive years and this study utilizes data on student performance to investigate (a) the relationship between tasks primarily addressing argumentation and tasks addressing primarily content knowledge as well as (b) students' performance on argumentation tasks, which differ in relation to content, subject, aspect of argumentation and assessment criteria. Findings suggest a strong and positive relationship between content knowledge and students' performance on argumentation tasks. The analysis also provides some hypotheses about the task difficulty of argumentation tasks that may be pursued in future investigations.

  10. Factors Associated With Community Health Worker Performance Differ by Task in a Multi-Tasked Setting in Rural Zimbabwe

    PubMed Central

    Kambarami, Rukundo A; Mbuya, Mduduzi NN; Pelletier, David; Fundira, Dadirai; Tavengwa, Naume V; Stoltzfus, Rebecca J

    2016-01-01

    ABSTRACT Background: Zimbabwe, like most low-income countries, faces health worker shortages. Community health workers (CHWs) bridge this gap by delivering essential health services and nutrition interventions to communities. However, as workloads increase, CHWs’ ability to provide quality services may be compromised. We studied influences upon CHWs’ performance related to pregnancy surveillance and nutrition and hygiene education in rural Zimbabwe. Methods: In the context of a cluster-randomized trial conducted in 2 rural districts between November 2012 and March 2015, 342 government-employed CHWs identified and referred pregnant women for early antenatal care and delivered household-level behavior change lessons about infant feeding and hygiene to more than 5,000 women. In 2013, we conducted a survey among 322 of the CHWs to assess the association between demographic and work characteristics and task performance. Exploratory factor analyses of the Likert-type survey questions produced 8 distinct and reliable constructs of job satisfaction and motivation, supervision, peer support, and feedback (Cronbach α range, 0.68 to 0.92). Pregnancy surveillance performance was assessed from pregnancy referrals, and nutrition and hygiene education performance was assessed by taking the average summative score (range, 5 to 30) of lesson delivery observations completed by a nurse supervisor using a 6-item Likert-type checklist. Poisson and multiple linear regressions were used to test associations between CHW demographic and work characteristics and performance. Results: CHWs who referred more pregnant women were female, unmarried, under 40 years old, from larger households, and of longer tenure. They also perceived work resources to be adequate and received positive feedback from supervisors and the community, but they were less satisfied with remuneration. CHWs with high scores on behavior change lesson delivery were from smaller households, and they received more

  11. The assessment of risky decision making: a factor analysis of performance on the Iowa Gambling Task, Balloon Analogue Risk Task, and Columbia Card Task.

    PubMed

    Buelow, Melissa T; Blaine, Amber L

    2015-09-01

    Researchers and clinicians frequently use behavioral measures to assess decision making. The most common task that is marketed to clinicians is the Iowa Gambling Task (IGT), thought to assess risky decision making. How does performance on the IGT relate to performance on other common measures of decision making? The present study sought to examine relationships between the IGT, the Balloon Analogue Risk Task (BART), and the Columbia Card Task (CCT). Participants were 390 undergraduate students who completed the IGT, BART, and either the "hot" or "cold" CCT. Principal components factor analysis on the IGT, BART, and CCT-cold (n = 112) indicated that the IGT measures a different component of decision making than the BART, and the CCT-cold weakly correlated with early IGT trials. Results of the exploratory factor analysis on the IGT, BART, and CCT-hot (n = 108) revealed a similar picture: the IGT and BART assessed different types of decision making, and the BART and CCT-hot were weakly correlated. A confirmatory factor analysis (n = 170) indicated that a 3-factor model without the CCT-cold (Factor 1: later IGT trials; Factor 2: BART; and Factor 3: early IGT trials) was a better fitting model than one that included the CCT-cold and early IGT trials on the same factor. Collectively, the present results suggest that the IGT, BART, and CCT all measure unique, nonoverlapping decision making processes. Further research is needed to more fully understand the neuropsychological construct of decision making. PMID:25580611

  12. Association between educational status and dual-task performance in young adults.

    PubMed

    Voos, Mariana Callil; Pimentel Piemonte, Maria Elisa; Castelli, Lilian Zanchetta; Andrade Machado, Mariane Silva; Dos Santos Teixeira, Patrícia Pereira; Caromano, Fátima Aparecida; Ribeiro Do Valle, Luiz Eduardo

    2015-04-01

    The influence of educational status on perceptual-motor performance has not been investigated. The single- and dual-task performances of 15 Low educated adults (9 men, 6 women; M age=24.1 yr.; 6-9 yr. of education) and 15 Higher educated adults (8 men, 7 women; M age=24.7 yr.; 10-13 yr. of education) were compared. The perceptual task consisted of verbally classifying two figures (equal or different). The motor task consisted of alternating steps from the floor to a stool. Tasks were assessed individually and simultaneously. Two analyses of variance (2 groups×4 blocks) compared the errors and steps. The Low education group committed more errors and had less improvement on the perceptual task than the High education group. During and after the perceptual-motor task performance, errors increased only in the Low education group. Education correlated to perceptual and motor performance. The Low education group showed more errors and less step alternations on the perceptual-motor task compared to the High education group. This difference on the number of errors was also observed after the dual-task, when the perceptual task was performed alone.

  13. Which Factors Affect Hand Selection in Children's Grasping in Hemispace? Combined Effects of Task Demand and Motor Dominance

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Leconte, Pascale; Fagard, Jacqueline

    2006-01-01

    Sixty-five right- and left-handed preschool and school children were tested on three reach-to-grasp tasks of different levels of complexity, performed in three space locations. Our goal was to evaluate how the effect of attentional information related to object location interacts with task complexity and degree of handedness on children's hand…

  14. Absorbed in the task: Personality measures predict engagement during task performance as tracked by error negativity and asymmetrical frontal activity.

    PubMed

    Tops, Mattie; Boksem, Maarten A S

    2010-12-01

    We hypothesized that interactions between traits and context predict task engagement, as measured by the amplitude of the error-related negativity (ERN), performance, and relative frontal activity asymmetry (RFA). In Study 1, we found that drive for reward, absorption, and constraint independently predicted self-reported persistence. We hypothesized that, during a prolonged monotonous task, absorption would predict initial ERN amplitudes, constraint would delay declines in ERN amplitudes and deterioration of performance, and drive for reward would predict left RFA when a reward could be obtained. Study 2, employing EEG recordings, confirmed our predictions. The results showed that most traits that have in previous research been related to ERN amplitudes have a relationship with the motivational trait persistence in common. In addition, trait-context combinations that are likely associated with increased engagement predict larger ERN amplitudes and RFA. Together, these results support the hypothesis that engagement may be a common underlying factor predicting ERN amplitude.

  15. Selecting Tasks for Evaluating Human Performance as a Function of Gravity

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Norcross, J. R.; Gernhardt, M. L.

    2010-01-01

    A challenge in understanding human performance as a function of gravity is determining which tasks to research. Initial studies began with treadmill walking, which was easy to quantify and control. However, with the development of pressurized rovers, it is less important to optimize human performance for ambulation as rovers will likely perform gross translation for them. Future crews are likely to spend much of their extravehicular activity (EVA) performing geology, construction and maintenance type tasks, for which it is difficult to measure steady-state-workloads. To evaluate human performance in reduced gravity, we have collected metabolic, biomechanical and subjective data for different tasks at varied gravity levels. Methods: Ten subjects completed 5 different tasks including weight transfer, shoveling, treadmill walking, treadmill running and treadmill incline walking. All tasks were performed shirt-sleeved at 1-g, 3/8-g and 1/6-g. Off-loaded conditions were achieved via the Active Response Gravity Offload System. Treadmill tasks were performed for 3 minutes with reported oxygen consumption (VO2) averaged over the last 2 minutes. Shoveling was performed for 3 minutes with metabolic cost reported as ml O2 consumed per kg material shoveled. Weight transfer reports metabolic cost as liters O2 consumed to complete the task. Statistical analysis was performed via repeated measures ANOVA. Results: Statistically significant metabolic differences were noted between all 3 gravity levels for treadmill running and incline walking. For the other 3 tasks, there were significant differences between 1-g and each reduced gravity, but not between 1/6-g and 3/8-g. For weight transfer, significant differences were seen between gravities in both trial-average VO2 and time-to-completion with noted differences in strategy for task completion. Conclusion: To determine if gravity has a metabolic effect on human performance, this research may indicate that tasks should be selected

  16. The effects of bedrest on crew performance during simulated shuttle reentry. Volume 2: Control task performance

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Jex, H. R.; Peters, R. A.; Dimarco, R. J.; Allen, R. W.

    1974-01-01

    A simplified space shuttle reentry simulation performed on the NASA Ames Research Center Centrifuge is described. Anticipating potentially deleterious effects of physiological deconditioning from orbital living (simulated here by 10 days of enforced bedrest) upon a shuttle pilot's ability to manually control his aircraft (should that be necessary in an emergency) a comprehensive battery of measurements was made roughly every 1/2 minute on eight military pilot subjects, over two 20-minute reentry Gz vs. time profiles, one peaking at 2 Gz and the other at 3 Gz. Alternate runs were made without and with g-suits to test the help or interference offered by such protective devices to manual control performance. A very demanding two-axis control task was employed, with a subcritical instability in the pitch axis to force a high attentional demand and a severe loss-of-control penalty. The results show that pilots experienced in high Gz flying can easily handle the shuttle manual control task during 2 Gz or 3 Gz reentry profiles, provided the degree of physiological deconditioning is no more than induced by these 10 days of enforced bedrest.

  17. When does imagery practice enhance performance on a motor task?

    PubMed

    Bohan, M; Pharmer, J A; Stokes, A F

    1999-04-01

    Imagery practice of motor tasks has been recommended for a wide range of activities as from flight training to basketball. A key question, both from a practical and a theoretical standpoint, is when during the learning process does imagery practice confer the most benefit? However, the literature does not provide clear guidance, in part because of methodological limitations. A 3 x 2 (physical practice x pretest-posttest) split-plot design was employed to investigate the effects of imagery practice on the acquisition of a discrete target at three different stages of learning. Analysis indicated that imagery practice was most beneficial in the early stages of learning and showed an inverse relationship between experience and efficacy of imagery practice. Results are discussed in terms of current theories of imagery practice and suggestions are made regarding when such practice might be best applied during skill development.

  18. Object Boundaries Influence Toddlers' Performance in a Search Task

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Shutts, Kristin; Keen, Rachel; Spelke, Elizabeth S.

    2006-01-01

    Previous research has shown that young children have difficulty searching for a hidden object whose location depends on the position of a partly visible physical barrier. Across four experiments, we tested whether children's search errors are affected by two variables that influence adults' object-directed attention: object boundaries and…

  19. 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.

  20. Poor performance on cognitive tasks in depression: Doing too much or not enough?

    PubMed Central

    Jones, Neil P.; Siegle, Greg J.; Muelly, Emilie R.; Haggerty, Agnes; Ghinassi, Frank

    2010-01-01

    Depressed people perform poorly on cognitive tasks – it is unclear whether these deficits are due to decreased devotion of task-related resources or increased attention to non-task-related information. We examined the degree to which depressed and healthy adults displayed pupillary motility which varied at the frequency of presented stimuli on a cognitive task, which we interpreted as task-related processing, and at other frequencies which we interpreted as reflecting intrinsic processing. Depressed participants made more consecutive errors compared to controls. More pupillary motility at other frequencies was associated with poorer performance whereas more pupillary motility at the frequency of presented stimuli was associated with better performance. Depressed participants had more pupillary motility at other frequencies which partially mediated observed deficits in cognitive performance. These findings support the hypothesis that allocating cognitive resources to intrinsic processing, contributes to observed cognitive deficits in depression. PMID:20233961

  1. Time estimation as a secondary task to measure workload. [attention sharing effect on operator performance

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Hart, S. G.

    1975-01-01

    Variation in the length of time productions and verbal estimates of duration was investigated to determine the influence of concurrent activity on operator time perception. The length of 10-, 20-, and 30-sec intervals produced while performing six different compensatory tracking tasks was significantly longer, 23% on the average, than those produced while performing no other task. Verbal estimates of session duration, taken at the end of each of 27 experimental sessions, reflected a parallel increase in subjective underestimation of the passage of time as the difficulty of the task performed increased. These data suggest that estimates of duration made while performing a manual control task provide stable and sensitive measures of the workload imposed by the primary task, with minimal interference.

  2. Investigating the muscle activities of performing surgical training tasks using a virtual simulator.

    PubMed

    Huang, Chun-Kai; Suh, Irene H; Chien, Jung Hung; Vallabhajosula, Srikant; Oleynikov, Dmitry; Siu, Ka-Chun

    2012-01-01

    The objective of this study was to determine the muscle activities of upper extremities while performing fundamental surgical training tasks using a virtual simulator. Six subjects performed virtual cutting tasks and their muscle activities of upper extremities were measured. The results demonstrated a significant increase in muscle activities in both proximal and distal upper extremities, which are the common areas of occurrence of injury after prolonged practice. This study suggests that the upper trapezius and the extensor digitorum are essential prime movers to perform surgical training tasks. These muscles should be monitored for performance assessment in future studies.

  3. 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.

  4. The effect of processing code, response modality and task difficulty on dual task performance and subjective workload in a manual system

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Liu, Yili; Wickens, Christopher D.

    1987-01-01

    This paper reports on the first experiment of a series studying the effect of task structure and difficulty demand on time-sharing performance and workload in both automated and corresponding manual systems. The experimental task involves manual control time-shared with spatial and verbal decisions tasks of two levels of difficulty and two modes of response (voice or manual). The results provide strong evidence that tasks and processes competing for common processing resources are time shared less effecively and have higher workload than tasks competing for separate resources. Subjective measures and the structure of multiple resources are used in conjunction to predict dual task performance. The evidence comes from both single-task and from dual-task performance.

  5. Defining Administrative Tasks, Evaluating Performance, and Developing Skills.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Herman, Janice L.; Herman, Jerry J.

    1995-01-01

    To ensure high performance, administrators should develop an articulated structure and process systems approach that identifies the critical success factors (CSFs) of performance for each position; appropriate indicators and scales; and a personal-improvement plan based on last year's evaluation. Once CSFs are identified and written into the…

  6. Performance processes within affect-related performance zones: a multi-modal investigation of golf performance.

    PubMed

    van der Lei, Harry; Tenenbaum, Gershon

    2012-12-01

    Individual affect-related performance zones (IAPZs) method utilizing Kamata et al. (J Sport Exerc Psychol 24:189-208, 2002) probabilistic model of determining the individual zone of optimal functioning was utilized as idiosyncratic affective patterns during golf performance. To do so, three male golfers of a varsity golf team were observed during three rounds of golf competition. The investigation implemented a multi-modal assessment approach in which the probabilistic relationship between affective states and both, performance process and performance outcome, measures were determined. More specifically, introspective (i.e., verbal reports) and objective (heart rate and respiration rate) measures of arousal were incorporated to examine the relationships between arousal states and both, process components (i.e., routine consistency, timing), and outcome scores related to golf performance. Results revealed distinguishable and idiosyncratic IAPZs associated with physiological and introspective measures for each golfer. The associations between the IAPZs and decision-making or swing/stroke execution were strong and unique for each golfer. Results are elaborated using cognitive and affect-related concepts, and applications for practitioners are provided.

  7. Preempting performance challenges: the effects of inoculation messaging on attacks to task self-efficacy.

    PubMed

    Jackson, Ben; Compton, Josh; Whiddett, Ryan; Anthony, David R; Dimmock, James A

    2015-01-01

    Although inoculation messages have been shown to be effective for inducing resistance to counter-attitudinal attacks, researchers have devoted relatively little attention toward studying the way in which inoculation theory principles might support challenges to psychological phenomena other than attitudes (e.g., self-efficacy). Prior to completing a physical (i.e., balance) task, undergraduates (N = 127, Mage = 19.20, SD = 2.16) were randomly assigned to receive either a control or inoculation message, and reported their confidence in their ability regarding the upcoming task. During the task, a confederate provided standardized negative feedback to all participants regarding their performance, and following the completion of the task, participants again reported their self-efficacy along with measures assessing in-task processes. Findings supported the viability of efficacy inoculation; controlling for pre-task self-efficacy, task performance, and relevant psycho-social variables (e.g., resilience, self-confidence robustness), participants in the inoculation condition reported greater confidence in their ability (i.e., task self-efficacy) than those in the control condition at post-task. Relative to those in the inoculation condition, participants in the control condition also experienced greater concentration disruption and self-presentation concerns during the task.

  8. Preempting Performance Challenges: The Effects of Inoculation Messaging on Attacks to Task Self-Efficacy

    PubMed Central

    Jackson, Ben; Compton, Josh; Whiddett, Ryan; Anthony, David R.; Dimmock, James A.

    2015-01-01

    Although inoculation messages have been shown to be effective for inducing resistance to counter-attitudinal attacks, researchers have devoted relatively little attention toward studying the way in which inoculation theory principles might support challenges to psychological phenomena other than attitudes (e.g., self-efficacy). Prior to completing a physical (i.e., balance) task, undergraduates (N = 127, Mage = 19.20, SD = 2.16) were randomly assigned to receive either a control or inoculation message, and reported their confidence in their ability regarding the upcoming task. During the task, a confederate provided standardized negative feedback to all participants regarding their performance, and following the completion of the task, participants again reported their self-efficacy along with measures assessing in-task processes. Findings supported the viability of efficacy inoculation; controlling for pre-task self-efficacy, task performance, and relevant psycho-social variables (e.g., resilience, self-confidence robustness), participants in the inoculation condition reported greater confidence in their ability (i.e., task self-efficacy) than those in the control condition at post-task. Relative to those in the inoculation condition, participants in the control condition also experienced greater concentration disruption and self-presentation concerns during the task. PMID:25898287

  9. Machine Learning Based Online Performance Prediction for Runtime Parallelization and Task Scheduling

    SciTech Connect

    Li, J; Ma, X; Singh, K; Schulz, M; de Supinski, B R; McKee, S A

    2008-10-09

    With the emerging many-core paradigm, parallel programming must extend beyond its traditional realm of scientific applications. Converting existing sequential applications as well as developing next-generation software requires assistance from hardware, compilers and runtime systems to exploit parallelism transparently within applications. These systems must decompose applications into tasks that can be executed in parallel and then schedule those tasks to minimize load imbalance. However, many systems lack a priori knowledge about the execution time of all tasks to perform effective load balancing with low scheduling overhead. In this paper, we approach this fundamental problem using machine learning techniques first to generate performance models for all tasks and then applying those models to perform automatic performance prediction across program executions. We also extend an existing scheduling algorithm to use generated task cost estimates for online task partitioning and scheduling. We implement the above techniques in the pR framework, which transparently parallelizes scripts in the popular R language, and evaluate their performance and overhead with both a real-world application and a large number of synthetic representative test scripts. Our experimental results show that our proposed approach significantly improves task partitioning and scheduling, with maximum improvements of 21.8%, 40.3% and 22.1% and average improvements of 15.9%, 16.9% and 4.2% for LMM (a real R application) and synthetic test cases with independent and dependent tasks, respectively.

  10. Mathematics Anxiety and the Affective Drop in Performance

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Ashcraft, Mark H.; Moore, Alex M.

    2009-01-01

    The authors provide a brief review of the history and assessment of math anxiety, its relationship to personal and educational consequences, and its important impact on measures of performance. Overall, math anxiety causes an "affective drop," a decline in performance when math is performed under timed, high-stakes conditions, both in laboratory…

  11. Human footprint variation while performing load bearing tasks.

    PubMed

    Wall-Scheffler, Cara M; Wagnild, Janelle; Wagler, Emily

    2015-01-01

    Human footprint fossils have provided essential evidence about the evolution of human bipedalism as well as the social dynamics of the footprint makers, including estimates of speed, sex and group composition. Generally such estimates are made by comparing footprint evidence with modern controls; however, previous studies have not accounted for the variation in footprint dimensions coming from load bearing activities. It is likely that a portion of the hominins who created these fossil footprints were carrying a significant load, such as offspring or foraging loads, which caused variation in the footprint which could extend to variation in any estimations concerning the footprint's maker. To identify significant variation in footprints due to load-bearing tasks, we had participants (N = 30, 15 males and 15 females) walk at a series of speeds carrying a 20kg pack on their back, side and front. Paint was applied to the bare feet of each participant to create footprints that were compared in terms of foot length, foot width and foot area. Female foot length and width increased during multiple loaded conditions. An appreciation of footprint variability associated with carrying loads adds an additional layer to our understanding of the behavior and morphology of extinct hominin populations.

  12. Human Footprint Variation while Performing Load Bearing Tasks

    PubMed Central

    Wall-Scheffler, Cara M.; Wagnild, Janelle; Wagler, Emily

    2015-01-01

    Human footprint fossils have provided essential evidence about the evolution of human bipedalism as well as the social dynamics of the footprint makers, including estimates of speed, sex and group composition. Generally such estimates are made by comparing footprint evidence with modern controls; however, previous studies have not accounted for the variation in footprint dimensions coming from load bearing activities. It is likely that a portion of the hominins who created these fossil footprints were carrying a significant load, such as offspring or foraging loads, which caused variation in the footprint which could extend to variation in any estimations concerning the footprint’s maker. To identify significant variation in footprints due to load-bearing tasks, we had participants (N = 30, 15 males and 15 females) walk at a series of speeds carrying a 20kg pack on their back, side and front. Paint was applied to the bare feet of each participant to create footprints that were compared in terms of foot length, foot width and foot area. Female foot length and width increased during multiple loaded conditions. An appreciation of footprint variability associated with carrying loads adds an additional layer to our understanding of the behavior and morphology of extinct hominin populations. PMID:25738496

  13. Regularities in responding during performance of a complex choice task.

    PubMed

    Mercado, Eduardo; Orduña, Vladimir

    2015-12-01

    Systematic variations in the rate and temporal patterns of responding under a multiple concurrent-chains schedule were quantified using recurrence metrics and self-organizing maps to assess whether individual rats showed consistent or idiosyncratic patterns. The results indicated that (1) the temporal regularity of response patterns varied as a function of number of training sessions, time on task, magnitude of reinforcement, and reinforcement contingencies; (2) individuals showed heterogeneous, stereotyped patterns of responding, despite similarities in matching behavior; (3) the specific trajectories of behavioral variation shown by individuals were less evident in group-level analyses; and (4) reinforcement contingencies within terminal links strongly modulated response patterns within initial links. Temporal regularity in responding was most evident for responses that led to minimally delayed reinforcers of larger magnitude. Models of response production and selection that take into account the time between individual responses, probabilities of transitions between response options, periodicity within response sequences, and individual differences in response dynamics can clarify the mechanisms that drive behavioral adjustments during operant conditioning. PMID:26077440

  14. Virtual environment to quantify the influence of colour stimuli on the performance of tasks requiring attention

    PubMed Central

    2011-01-01

    attention, were most affected. Conclusions The game proved to be a user-friendly tool capable to detect and quantify the influence of color on the performance of people executing tasks that require attention and showed to be attractive for people with ADHD. PMID:21854630

  15. Cultural differences in neuropsychological abilities required to perform intelligence tasks.

    PubMed

    Fasfous, Ahmed F; Hidalgo-Ruzzante, Natalia; Vilar-López, Raquel; Catena-Martínez, Andrés; Pérez-García, Miguel

    2013-12-01

    Different studies have demonstrated that culture has a basic role in intelligence tests performance. Nevertheless, the specific neuropsychological abilities used by different cultures to perform an intelligence test have never been explored. In this study, we examine the differences between Spaniards and Moroccans in the neuropsychological abilities utilized to perform the Beta III as a non-verbal intelligence test. The results showed that the Spaniard group obtained a higher IQ than the Moroccan group in the Beta III. Moreover, the neuropsychological abilities that predicted scores for the Beta III were dependent on the country of origin and were different for each subtest. Besides showing the cultural effect on non-verbal intelligence test performance, our results suggest that a single test may measure different functions, depending on the subject's cultural background. PMID:24055883

  16. Inharmonic music elicits more negative affect and interferes more with a concurrent cognitive task than does harmonic music.

    PubMed

    Bonin, Tanor; Smilek, Daniel

    2016-04-01

    We evaluated whether task-irrelevant inharmonic music produces greater interference with cognitive performance than task-irrelevant harmonic music. Participants completed either an auditory (Experiment 1) or a visual (Experiment 2) version of the cognitively demanding 2-back task in which they were required to categorize each digit in a sequence of digits as either being a target (a digit also presented two positions earlier in the sequence) or a distractor (all other items). They were concurrently exposed to either task-irrelevant harmonic music (judged to be consonant), task-irrelevant inharmonic music (judged to be dissonant), or no music at all as a distraction. The main finding across both experiments was that performance on the 2-back task was worse when participants were exposed to inharmonic music than when they were exposed to harmonic music. Interestingly, performance on the 2-back task was generally the same regardless of whether harmonic music or no music was played. We suggest that inharmonic, dissonant music interferes with cognitive performance by requiring greater cognitive processing than harmonic, consonant music, and speculate about why this might be.

  17. Self-Evaluation Accuracy and Satisfaction with Performance: Are there Affective Costs or Benefits of Positive Self-Evaluation Bias?

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Narciss, Susanne; Koerndle, Hermann; Dresel, Markus

    2011-01-01

    This paper examines how self-evaluation biases may influence satisfaction with performance. A review of theoretical positions suggests there are two views, both of which are supported by studies involving laboratory tasks. The first view predicts affective costs, and the second affective benefits of positive self-evaluation bias. We test the…

  18. The curvilinear relationship between work pressure and momentary task performance: the role of state and trait core self-evaluations

    PubMed Central

    Hofmans, Joeri; Debusscher, Jonas; Dóci, Edina; Spanouli, Andromachi; De Fruyt, Filip

    2015-01-01

    Whereas several studies have demonstrated that core self-evaluations (CSE)–or one’s appraisals about one’s own self-worth, capabilities, and competences–relate to job outcomes, less is known about the mechanisms underlying these relationships. In the present study, we address this issue by examining the role of within- and between-person variation in CSE in the relationship between work pressure and task performance. We hypothesized that (a) work pressure relates to task performance in a curvilinear way, (b) state CSE mediates the curvilinear relationship between work pressure and task performance, and (c) the relationship between work pressure and state CSE is moderated by trait CSE. Our hypotheses were tested via a 10-day daily diary study with 55 employees in which trait CSE was measured at baseline, while work pressure, task performance, and state CSE were assessed on a daily basis. Bayesian multilevel path analysis showed that work pressure affects task performance via state CSE, with state CSE increasing as long as the employee feels that (s)he is able to handle the work pressure, while it decreases when the level of work pressure exceeds the employees’ coping abilities. Moreover, we found that for people low on trait CSE, the depleting effect of work pressure via state CSE happens for low levels of work pressure, while for people high in trait CSE the depleting effect is located at high levels of work pressure. Together, our findings suggest that the impact of work pressure on task performance is driven by a complex interplay of between- and within-person differences in CSE. PMID:26579053

  19. The curvilinear relationship between work pressure and momentary task performance: the role of state and trait core self-evaluations.

    PubMed

    Hofmans, Joeri; Debusscher, Jonas; Dóci, Edina; Spanouli, Andromachi; De Fruyt, Filip

    2015-01-01

    Whereas several studies have demonstrated that core self-evaluations (CSE)-or one's appraisals about one's own self-worth, capabilities, and competences-relate to job outcomes, less is known about the mechanisms underlying these relationships. In the present study, we address this issue by examining the role of within- and between-person variation in CSE in the relationship between work pressure and task performance. We hypothesized that (a) work pressure relates to task performance in a curvilinear way, (b) state CSE mediates the curvilinear relationship between work pressure and task performance, and (c) the relationship between work pressure and state CSE is moderated by trait CSE. Our hypotheses were tested via a 10-day daily diary study with 55 employees in which trait CSE was measured at baseline, while work pressure, task performance, and state CSE were assessed on a daily basis. Bayesian multilevel path analysis showed that work pressure affects task performance via state CSE, with state CSE increasing as long as the employee feels that (s)he is able to handle the work pressure, while it decreases when the level of work pressure exceeds the employees' coping abilities. Moreover, we found that for people low on trait CSE, the depleting effect of work pressure via state CSE happens for low levels of work pressure, while for people high in trait CSE the depleting effect is located at high levels of work pressure. Together, our findings suggest that the impact of work pressure on task performance is driven by a complex interplay of between- and within-person differences in CSE. PMID:26579053

  20. Relationships among gender, cognitive style, academic major, and performance on the Piaget water-level task.

    PubMed

    Hammer, R E; Hoffer, N; King, W L

    1995-06-01

    Many researchers have found that more college-age adults than would be expected fail Piaget's water-level task, with women failing more frequently than men. It has been hypothesized that differences in cognitive style may account for performance differences on the water-level task. In the present study, 27 male and 27 female architectural students and 27 male and 27 female liberal-arts students were assessed for their performance on both Piaget's Water-level Task and Witkin's Group Embedded Figures Test. No difference was found in performance of male and female architectural students on either task, but male liberal-arts students scored significantly higher than female liberal-arts students on both measures. A disembedding cognitive style predicted success on the water-level task for the architectural students but not for the liberal arts students.

  1. Using representations in geometry: a model of students' cognitive and affective performance

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Panaoura, Areti

    2014-05-01

    Self-efficacy beliefs in mathematics, as a dimension of the affective domain, are related with students' performance on solving tasks and mainly on overcoming cognitive obstacles. The present study investigated the interrelations of cognitive performance on geometry and young students' self-efficacy beliefs about using representations for solving geometrical tasks. The emphasis was on confirming a theoretical model for the primary-school and secondary-school students and identifying the differences and similarities for the two ages. A quantitative study was developed and data were collected from 1086 students in Grades 5-8. Confirmatory factor analysis affirmed the existence of a coherent model of affective dimensions about the use of representations for understanding the geometrical concepts, which becomes more stable across the educational levels.

  2. The impact of hands-free message reception/response on driving task performance.

    PubMed

    Cooper, Peter J; Zheng, Yvonne; Richard, Christian; Vavrik, John; Heinrichs, Brad; Siegmund, Gunter

    2003-01-01

    A series of closed-course driving experiments were conducted in which 41 drivers ranging in age from 19 to 70 were put through a series of increasingly challenging driving performance tasks both in the presence and absence of audible messages. The messages required specific responses and these, along with driving performance measures based on driver/vehicle response characteristics, were recorded. The results clearly showed a negative impact of the message task on driver decision-making performance when this involved the more complex tasks of weaving and especially left-turning. Such decision-making decrements in the presence of the messages were exacerbated by adverse pavement surface conditions.

  3. Can Spectro-Temporal Complexity Explain the Autistic Pattern of Performance on Auditory Tasks?

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Samson, Fabienne; Mottron, Laurent; Jemel, Boutheina; Belin, Pascal; Ciocca, Valter

    2006-01-01

    To test the hypothesis that level of neural complexity explain the relative level of performance and brain activity in autistic individuals, available behavioural, ERP and imaging findings related to the perception of increasingly complex auditory material under various processing tasks in autism were reviewed. Tasks involving simple material…

  4. The performance of college students on piaget-type tasks dealing with distance, time, and speed

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Poduska, Ervin; Phillips, Darrell G.

    Research was done to probe and extend Piaget's theory of the conception of speed. Specifically tested was the hypothesis that there is no hierarchical relationship in performance on the following Piaget-type tasks: conservation of distance, asymmetric series of speeds, one-to-many (circular) speeds, symmetric speeds, time, and proportional reasoning. The research also tested the gender-related performance on these six tasks. One hundred freshman and sophomore college students were shown demonstrations of equipment individually for each of the six tasks. A set of open-ended questions based on the demonstrations was administered to each subject in a 45-minute interview. Subjects were scored as pass on a given task if they manipulated objects in certain ways and gave specific types of explanations. A scalogram analysis of the data yielded a z-score of - 3.7 which indicated that subjects passed the task in a certain sequence. The tasks were found to form a unidimensional scale and to be increasingly difficult in the order listed above. A chi-square test for two independent samples showed a significant difference (alpha = 0.05) in performance between males and females on all speed tasks. No significant differences in performance between males and females were found for the distance and time tasks.

  5. A Box Lift and Place Assessment is Related to Performance of Several Military Manual Handling Tasks.

    PubMed

    Carstairs, Greg L; Ham, Daniel J; Savage, Robert J; Best, Stuart A; Beck, Benjamin; Doyle, Timothy L A

    2016-03-01

    Soldiers undergo regular physical testing to assess their functional capacity. However, current physical tests, such as push-ups, sit-ups, and pull-ups, do not necessarily assess job-specific physical capability. This article assesses the utility of generic predictive tests and a task-related predictive test in predicting performance against four job-critical military manual handling tasks. The box lift and place test was found to be the superior predictor in performance of four job tasks; a pack lift and place (R(2) = 0.76), artillery gunner loading simulation (R(2) = 0.36), bombing up an M1 tank simulation, (R(2) = 0.47) and a bridge building simulation (R(2) = 0.63). Pull-ups and push-ups were poor predictors of performance in the majority of job tasks. Although the box lift and place had a larger correlation with the artillery gunner loading task than the generic assessment, it only accounted for 36% of the variance, indicating that a task simulation may be more appropriate to assess soldiers' capacity to perform this job task. These results support the use of a box lift and place rather than generic fitness tests for the evaluation of military manual handling tasks.

  6. Age-Related Differences in Reaction Time Task Performance in Young Children

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Kiselev, Sergey; Espy, Kimberlay Andrews; Sheffield, Tiffany

    2009-01-01

    Performance of reaction time (RT) tasks was investigated in young children and adults to test the hypothesis that age-related differences in processing speed supersede a "global" mechanism and are a function of specific differences in task demands and processing requirements. The sample consisted of 54 4-year-olds, 53 5-year-olds, 59 6-year-olds,…

  7. Product Delivery Expectations: Hanford LAW Product Performance and Acceptance Tanks Focus Area Task

    SciTech Connect

    Holtzscheiter, E.W.

    1999-04-29

    This task has several facets all aimed at providing technical products that will support the immobilization of Hanford's Low Activity Waste. Since this task breaks new ground in developing predictive capability, a review process external to the technical team is critical for acceptance by the technical community and is key to Hanford's Performance Assessment review process.

  8. An Analysis of Certain Job Tasks Performed by Selected Ohio Industrial Supervisors.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Stewart, William Joseph

    Using a pretested questionnaire, a survey was made of specific task performance and educational needs of first-line industrial supervisors in Ohio. The questionnaire, consisting of 120 task items under the headings of Transmission of Communications, Building of Management Skills, and Change in Attitudes, was administered to 472 supervisors, 194…

  9. Speech responses and dual-task performance - Better time-sharing or asymmetric transfer?

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Vidulich, Michael A.

    1988-01-01

    The value of speech controls in a dual-task experiment that also evaluated asymmetric transfer effects is considered. There was no evidence of asymmetric transfer in spite of significant effects supporting the advantage of mixing manual and speech responses. The data suggest that speech controls can be used to enhance performance in operational multiple-task environments.

  10. The Relationship of Group Structure, Task Performance, and Leadership Recognition Among Adult Basic Education Participants.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    King, Gordon A.

    A study investigated the relationship between group structure and leader recognition and compared task performance with group structure and leader recognition to obtain a better understanding of the adult basic education participant. Fifteen women were randomly assigned to three groups and each given a list of six symbols. Their task was to…

  11. Threat of resource loss: The role of self-regulation in adaptive task performance.

    PubMed

    Niessen, Cornelia; Jimmieson, Nerina L

    2016-03-01

    Changes at work are often accompanied with the threat of, or actual, resource loss. Through an experiment, we investigated the detrimental effect of the threat of resource loss on adaptive task performance. Self-regulation (i.e., task focus and emotion control) was hypothesized to buffer the negative relationship between the threat of resource loss and adaptive task performance. Adaptation was conceptualized as relearning after a change in task execution rules. Threat of resource loss was manipulated for 100 participants undertaking an air traffic control task. Using discontinuous growth curve modeling, 2 kinds of adaptation--transition adaptation and reacquisition adaptation--were differentiated. The results showed that individuals who experienced the threat of resource loss had a stronger drop in performance (less transition adaptation) and a subsequent slower recovery (less reacquisition adaptation) compared with the control group who experienced no threat. Emotion control (but not task focus) moderated the relationship between the threat of resource loss and transition adaptation. In this respect, individuals who felt threatened but regulated their emotions performed better immediately after the task change (but not later on) compared with those individuals who felt threatened and did not regulate their emotions as well. However, later on, relearning (reacquisition adaptation) under the threat of resource loss was facilitated when individuals concentrated on the task at hand.

  12. Age, Gender, and Training in Children's Performance of Piaget's Horizontality Task.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Parameswaran, Gowri

    2003-01-01

    Presents a study in which children (n=600), ages five to nine, completed Jean Piaget's horizontality task using a square water bottle. Finds a significant sex difference in the pretest performance of the horizontality task beginning with eight year olds. Includes references. (CMK)

  13. The Developmental Dynamics of Task-Avoidant Behavior and Math Performance in Kindergarten and Elementary School

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Hirvonen, Riikka; Tolvanen, Asko; Aunola, Kaisa; Nurmi, Jari-Erik

    2012-01-01

    Besides cognitive factors, children's learning at school may be influenced by more dynamic phenomena, such as motivation and achievement-related task-avoidant behavior. The present study examined the developmental dynamics of task-avoidant behavior and math performance from kindergarten to Grade 4. A total of 225 children were tested for their…

  14. On-Line Computer Terminal Performance on Science Related Tasks of Concept-Attainment.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Smith, Thomas Eugene

    This study was designed to identify patterns of selections and performance characteristics displayed by individuals during a concept-attainment task. The relationships between selection patterns and individual characteristics were studied in addition to the effects of changes in task characteristics on selection patterns. The population was 200…

  15. Performances on a cognitive theory of mind task: specific decline or general cognitive deficits? Evidence from normal aging.

    PubMed

    Fliss, Rafika; Lemerre, Marion; Mollard, Audrey

    2016-06-01

    Compromised theory of mind (ToM) can be explained either by a failure to implement specific representational capacities (mental state representations) or by more general executive selection demands. In older adult populations, evidence supporting affected executive functioning and cognitive ToM in normal aging are reported. However, links between these two functions remain unclear. In the present paper, we address these shortcomings by using a specific task of ToM and classical executive tasks. We studied, using an original cognitive ToM task, the effect of age on ToM performances, in link with the progressive executive decline. 96 elderly participants were recruited. They were asked to perform a cognitive ToM task, and 5 executive tests (Stroop test and Hayling Sentence Completion Test to appreciate inhibitory process, Trail Making Test and Verbal Fluency for shifting assessment and backward span dedicated to estimate working memory capacity). The results show changes in cognitive ToM performance according to executive demands. Correlational studies indicate a significant relationship between ToM performance and the selected executive measures. Regression analyzes demonstrates that level of vocabulary and age as the best predictors of ToM performance. The results are consistent with the hypothesis that ToM deficits are related to age-related domain-general decline rather than as to a breakdown in specialized representational system. The implications of these findings for the nature of social cognition tests in normal aging are also discussed. PMID:27277154

  16. Performances on a cognitive theory of mind task: specific decline or general cognitive deficits? Evidence from normal aging.

    PubMed

    Fliss, Rafika; Lemerre, Marion; Mollard, Audrey

    2016-06-01

    Compromised theory of mind (ToM) can be explained either by a failure to implement specific representational capacities (mental state representations) or by more general executive selection demands. In older adult populations, evidence supporting affected executive functioning and cognitive ToM in normal aging are reported. However, links between these two functions remain unclear. In the present paper, we address these shortcomings by using a specific task of ToM and classical executive tasks. We studied, using an original cognitive ToM task, the effect of age on ToM performances, in link with the progressive executive decline. 96 elderly participants were recruited. They were asked to perform a cognitive ToM task, and 5 executive tests (Stroop test and Hayling Sentence Completion Test to appreciate inhibitory process, Trail Making Test and Verbal Fluency for shifting assessment and backward span dedicated to estimate working memory capacity). The results show changes in cognitive ToM performance according to executive demands. Correlational studies indicate a significant relationship between ToM performance and the selected executive measures. Regression analyzes demonstrates that level of vocabulary and age as the best predictors of ToM performance. The results are consistent with the hypothesis that ToM deficits are related to age-related domain-general decline rather than as to a breakdown in specialized representational system. The implications of these findings for the nature of social cognition tests in normal aging are also discussed.

  17. 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

  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. A Model of Physical Performance for Occupational Tasks.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Hogan, Joyce

    This report acknowledges the problems faced by industrial/organizational psychologists who must make personnel decisions involving physically demanding jobs. The scarcity of criterion-related validation studies and the difficulty of generalizing validity are considered, and a model of physical performance that builds on Fleishman's (1984)…

  20. Children's Working Memory: Investigating Performance Limitations in Complex Span Tasks

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Conlin, J.A.; Gathercole, S.E.; Adams, J.W.

    2005-01-01

    Three experiments investigated the roles of resource-sharing and intrinsic memory demands in complex working memory span performance in 7- and 9-year-olds. In Experiment 1, the processing complexity of arithmetic operations was varied under conditions in which processing times were equivalent. Memory span did not differ as a function of processing…

  1. Toward a mathematical formalism of performance, task difficulty, and activation

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Samaras, George M.

    1988-01-01

    The rudiments of a mathematical formalism for handling operational, physiological, and psychological concepts are developed for use by the man-machine system design engineer. The formalism provides a framework for developing a structured, systematic approach to the interface design problem, using existing mathematical tools, and simplifying the problem of telling a machine how to measure and use performance.

  2. Interactions of Task and Subject Variables among Continuous Performance Tests

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Denney, Colin B.; Rapport, Mark D.; Chung, Kyong-Mee

    2005-01-01

    Background: Contemporary models of working memory suggest that target paradigm (TP) and target density (TD) should interact as influences on error rates derived from continuous performance tests (CPTs). The present study evaluated this hypothesis empirically in a typically developing, ethnically diverse sample of children. The extent to which…

  3. Dual Motor-Cognitive Virtual Reality Training Impacts Dual-Task Performance in Freezing of Gait.

    PubMed

    Killane, Isabelle; Fearon, Conor; Newman, Louise; McDonnell, Conor; Waechter, Saskia M; Sons, Kristian; Lynch, Timothy; Reilly, Richard B

    2015-11-01

    Freezing of gait (FOG), an episodic gait disturbance characterized by the inability to generate effective stepping, occurs in more than half of Parkinson's disease patients. It is associated with both executive dysfunction and attention and becomes most evident during dual tasking (performing two tasks simultaneously). This study examined the effect of dual motor-cognitive virtual reality training on dual-task performance in FOG. Twenty community dwelling participants with Parkinson's disease (13 with FOG, 7 without FOG) participated in a pre-assessment, eight 20-minute intervention sessions, and a post-assessment. The intervention consisted of a virtual reality maze (DFKI, Germany) through which participants navigated by stepping-in-place on a balance board (Nintendo, Japan) under time pressure. This was combined with a cognitive task (Stroop test), which repeatedly divided participants' attention. The primary outcome measures were pre- and post-intervention differences in motor (stepping time, symmetry, rhythmicity) and cognitive (accuracy, reaction time) performance during single- and dual-tasks. Both assessments consisted of 1) a single cognitive task 2) a single motor task, and 3) a dual motor-cognitive task. Following the intervention, there was significant improvement in dual-task cognitive and motor parameters (stepping time and rhythmicity), dual-task effect for those with FOG and a noteworthy improvement in FOG episodes. These improvements were less significant for those without FOG. This is the first study to show benefit of a dual motor-cognitive approach on dual-task performance in FOG. Advances in such virtual reality interventions for home use could substantially improve the quality of life for patients who experience FOG. PMID:26394439

  4. Driving Performance Under Alcohol in Simulated Representative Driving Tasks

    PubMed Central

    Kenntner-Mabiala, Ramona; Kaussner, Yvonne; Jagiellowicz-Kaufmann, Monika; Hoffmann, Sonja; Krüger, Hans-Peter

    2015-01-01

    Abstract Comparing drug-induced driving impairments with the effects of benchmark blood alcohol concentrations (BACs) is an approved approach to determine the clinical relevance of findings for traffic safety. The present study aimed to collect alcohol calibration data to validate findings of clinical trials that were derived from a representative test course in a dynamic driving simulator. The driving performance of 24 healthy volunteers under placebo and with 0.05% and 0.08% BACs was measured in a double-blind, randomized, crossover design. Trained investigators assessed the subjects’ driving performance and registered their driving errors. Various driving parameters that were recorded during the simulation were also analyzed. Generally, the participants performed worse on the test course (P < 0.05 for the investigators’ assessment) under the influence of alcohol. Consistent with the relevant literature, lane-keeping performance parameters were sensitive to the investigated BACs. There were significant differences between the alcohol and placebo conditions in most of the parameters analyzed. However, the total number of errors was the only parameter discriminating significantly between all three BAC conditions. In conclusion, data show that the present experimental setup is suitable for future psychopharmacological research. Thereby, for each drug to be investigated, we recommend to assess a profile of various parameters that address different levels of driving. On the basis of this performance profile, the total number of driving errors is recommended as the primary endpoint. However, this overall endpoint should be completed by a specifically sensitive parameter that is chosen depending on the effect known to be induced by the tested drug. PMID:25689289

  5. Perfectionism, Performance, and State Positive Affect and Negative Affect after a Classroom Test

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Flett, Gordon L.; Blankstein, Kirk R.; Hewitt, Paul L.

    2009-01-01

    The current study examined the associations among trait dimensions of perfectionism, test performance, and levels of positive and negative affect after taking a test. A sample of 92 female university students completed the Multidimensional Perfectionism Scale one week prior to an actual class test. Measures of positive affect and negative affect…

  6. Path Analysis Examining Self-Efficacy and Decision-Making Performance on a Simulated Baseball Task

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Hepler, Teri J.; Feltz, Deborah L.

    2012-01-01

    The purpose of this study was to examine the relationship between decision-making self-efficacy and decision-making performance in sport. Undergraduate students (N = 78) performed 10 trials of a decision-making task in baseball. Self-efficacy was measured before performing each trial. Decision-making performance was assessed by decision speed and…

  7. Expertise, attention, and memory in sensorimotor skill execution: impact of novel task constraints on dual-task performance and episodic memory.

    PubMed

    Beilock, Sian L; Wierenga, Sarah A; Carr, Thomas H

    2002-10-01

    Two experiments explored the attention and memory processes governing sensorimotor skill. Experiment 1 compared novice and experienced golf putting performance in single-task (putting in isolation) and dual-task conditions (putting while performing an auditory word search task). At specific intervals, participants also produced episodic descriptions of specific putts. Experiment 2 assessed novice performance following training on the same putting task. In Experiment 1, experienced golfers did not differ in putting accuracy from single-to dual-task conditions and, compared to novices, had higher recognition memory for words heard while putting but diminished episodic memories of specific putts. However, when using an s-shaped arbitrarily weighted "funny putter" designed to disrupt the mechanics of skill execution, experienced golfers produced extensive episodic memories of specific putts but showed decreased dual-task putting accuracy and recognition memory for secondary task words. Trained novices produced results intermediate between the untrained novices and experienced golfers. As predicted by current theories of practice-based automaticity, expertise leads to proceduralized control that does not require constant attention. Resources are free to devote to secondary task demands, yet episodic memory for primary task performance is impoverished. Novel task constraints (e.g., a funny putter) increase attention to execution, compromising secondary task performance but enhancing memory for skill execution. PMID:12420993

  8. Genetic algorithm based task reordering to improve the performance of batch scheduled massively parallel scientific applications

    SciTech Connect

    Sankaran, Ramanan; Angel, Jordan; Brown, W. Michael

    2015-04-08

    The growth in size of networked high performance computers along with novel accelerator-based node architectures has further emphasized the importance of communication efficiency in high performance computing. The world's largest high performance computers are usually operated as shared user facilities due to the costs of acquisition and operation. Applications are scheduled for execution in a shared environment and are placed on nodes that are not necessarily contiguous on the interconnect. Furthermore, the placement of tasks on the nodes allocated by the scheduler is sub-optimal, leading to performance loss and variability. Here, we investigate the impact of task placement on the performance of two massively parallel application codes on the Titan supercomputer, a turbulent combustion flow solver (S3D) and a molecular dynamics code (LAMMPS). Benchmark studies show a significant deviation from ideal weak scaling and variability in performance. The inter-task communication distance was determined to be one of the significant contributors to the performance degradation and variability. A genetic algorithm-based parallel optimization technique was used to optimize the task ordering. This technique provides an improved placement of the tasks on the nodes, taking into account the application's communication topology and the system interconnect topology. As a result, application benchmarks after task reordering through genetic algorithm show a significant improvement in performance and reduction in variability, therefore enabling the applications to achieve better time to solution and scalability on Titan during production.

  9. Genetic algorithm based task reordering to improve the performance of batch scheduled massively parallel scientific applications

    DOE PAGES

    Sankaran, Ramanan; Angel, Jordan; Brown, W. Michael

    2015-04-08

    The growth in size of networked high performance computers along with novel accelerator-based node architectures has further emphasized the importance of communication efficiency in high performance computing. The world's largest high performance computers are usually operated as shared user facilities due to the costs of acquisition and operation. Applications are scheduled for execution in a shared environment and are placed on nodes that are not necessarily contiguous on the interconnect. Furthermore, the placement of tasks on the nodes allocated by the scheduler is sub-optimal, leading to performance loss and variability. Here, we investigate the impact of task placement on themore » performance of two massively parallel application codes on the Titan supercomputer, a turbulent combustion flow solver (S3D) and a molecular dynamics code (LAMMPS). Benchmark studies show a significant deviation from ideal weak scaling and variability in performance. The inter-task communication distance was determined to be one of the significant contributors to the performance degradation and variability. A genetic algorithm-based parallel optimization technique was used to optimize the task ordering. This technique provides an improved placement of the tasks on the nodes, taking into account the application's communication topology and the system interconnect topology. As a result, application benchmarks after task reordering through genetic algorithm show a significant improvement in performance and reduction in variability, therefore enabling the applications to achieve better time to solution and scalability on Titan during production.« less

  10. Multi-attribute subjective evaluations of manual tracking tasks vs. objective performance of the human operator

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Siapkaras, A.

    1977-01-01

    A computational method to deal with the multidimensional nature of tracking and/or monitoring tasks is developed. Operator centered variables, including the operator's perception of the task, are considered. Matrix ratings are defined based on multidimensional scaling techniques and multivariate analysis. The method consists of two distinct steps: (1) to determine the mathematical space of subjective judgements of a certain individual (or group of evaluators) for a given set of tasks and experimental conditionings; and (2) to relate this space with respect to both the task variables and the objective performance criteria used. Results for a variety of second-order trackings with smoothed noise-driven inputs indicate that: (1) many of the internally perceived task variables form a nonorthogonal set; and (2) the structure of the subjective space varies among groups of individuals according to the degree of familiarity they have with such tasks.

  11. A meta-analysis of reinforcement sensitivity theory: on performance parameters in reinforcement tasks.

    PubMed

    Leue, Anja; Beauducel, André

    2008-11-01

    J. A. Gray's Reinforcement Sensitivity Theory (RST) has produced a wealth of quasi-experimental studies in more than 35 years of research on personality and reinforcement sensitivity. The present meta-analysis builds on this literature by investigating RST in conflict and nonconflict reinforcement tasks in humans. Based on random-effects meta-analysis, we confirmed RST predictions of performance parameters (e.g., number of responses, reaction time) in reinforcement tasks for impulsivity- and anxiety-related traits. In studies on anxiety-related traits, the effect size variance was smaller for conflict tasks than for nonconflict tasks. A larger mean effect size and a larger variability of effect sizes were found for conflict compared to nonconflict tasks in studies on impulsivity-related traits. Our results suggest that problems with RST confirmation in reinforcement tasks are at least partly caused by insufficient statistical power of primary studies, and thus, encourage future research on RST.

  12. Sensorimotor Adaptability Training Improves Motor and Dual-Task Performance

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Bloomberg, J.J.; Peters, B.T.; Mulavara, A.P.; Brady, R.; Batson, C.; Cohen, H.S.

    2009-01-01

    The overall objective of our project is to develop a sensorimotor adaptability (SA) training program designed to facilitate recovery of functional capabilities when astronauts transition to different gravitational environments. The goal of our current study was to determine if SA training using variation in visual flow and support surface motion produces improved performance in a novel sensory environment and demonstrate the retention characteristics of SA training.

  13. Cognitive tasks during expectation affect the congruency ERP effects to facial expressions

    PubMed Central

    Lin, Huiyan; Schulz, Claudia; Straube, Thomas

    2015-01-01

    Expectancy congruency has been shown to modulate event-related potentials (ERPs) to emotional stimuli, such as facial expressions. However, it is unknown whether the congruency ERP effects to facial expressions can be modulated by cognitive manipulations during stimulus expectation. To this end, electroencephalography (EEG) was recorded while participants viewed (neutral and fearful) facial expressions. Each trial started with a cue, predicting a facial expression, followed by an expectancy interval without any cues and subsequently the face. In half of the trials, participants had to solve a cognitive task in which different letters were presented for target letter detection during the expectancy interval. Furthermore, facial expressions were congruent with the cues in 75% of all trials. ERP results revealed that for fearful faces, the cognitive task during expectation altered the congruency effect in N170 amplitude; congruent compared to incongruent fearful faces evoked larger N170 in the non-task condition but the congruency effect was not evident in the task condition. Regardless of facial expression, the congruency effect was generally altered by the cognitive task during expectation in P3 amplitude; the amplitudes were larger for incongruent compared to congruent faces in the non-task condition but the congruency effect was not shown in the task condition. The findings indicate that cognitive tasks during expectation reduce the processing of expectation and subsequently, alter congruency ERP effects to facial expressions. PMID:26578938

  14. Cognitive tasks during expectation affect the congruency ERP effects to facial expressions.

    PubMed

    Lin, Huiyan; Schulz, Claudia; Straube, Thomas

    2015-01-01

    Expectancy congruency has been shown to modulate event-related potentials (ERPs) to emotional stimuli, such as facial expressions. However, it is unknown whether the congruency ERP effects to facial expressions can be modulated by cognitive manipulations during stimulus expectation. To this end, electroencephalography (EEG) was recorded while participants viewed (neutral and fearful) facial expressions. Each trial started with a cue, predicting a facial expression, followed by an expectancy interval without any cues and subsequently the face. In half of the trials, participants had to solve a cognitive task in which different letters were presented for target letter detection during the expectancy interval. Furthermore, facial expressions were congruent with the cues in 75% of all trials. ERP results revealed that for fearful faces, the cognitive task during expectation altered the congruency effect in N170 amplitude; congruent compared to incongruent fearful faces evoked larger N170 in the non-task condition but the congruency effect was not evident in the task condition. Regardless of facial expression, the congruency effect was generally altered by the cognitive task during expectation in P3 amplitude; the amplitudes were larger for incongruent compared to congruent faces in the non-task condition but the congruency effect was not shown in the task condition. The findings indicate that cognitive tasks during expectation reduce the processing of expectation and subsequently, alter congruency ERP effects to facial expressions.

  15. Information-Processing and Perceptions of Control: How Attribution Style Affects Task-Relevant Processing

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Yeigh, Tony

    2007-01-01

    This study investigated the effects of perceived controllability on information processing within Weiner's (1985, 1986) attributional model of learning. Attributional style was used to identify trait patterns of controllability for 37 university students. Task-relevant feedback on an information-processing task was then manipulated to test for…

  16. Formal Derivation of Lotka-Volterra-Haken Amplitude Equations of Task-Related Brain Activity in Multiple, Consecutively Performed Tasks

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Frank, T. D.

    The Lotka-Volterra-Haken equations have been frequently used in ecology and pattern formation. Recently, the equations have been proposed by several research groups as amplitude equations for task-related patterns of brain activity. In this theoretical study, the focus is on the circular causality aspect of pattern formation systems as formulated within the framework of synergetics. Accordingly, the stable modes of a pattern formation system inhibit the unstable modes, whereas the unstable modes excite the stable modes. Using this circular causality principle it is shown that under certain conditions the Lotka-Volterra-Haken amplitude equations can be derived from a general model of brain activity akin to the Wilson-Cowan model. The model captures the amplitude dynamics for brain activity patterns in experiments involving several consecutively performed multiple-choice tasks. This is explicitly demonstrated for two-choice tasks involving grasping and walking. A comment on the relevance of the theoretical framework for clinical psychology and schizophrenia is given as well.

  17. Age-Related Changes in Brain Activation Underlying Single- and Dual-Task Performance: Visuomanual Drawing and Mental Arithmetic

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Van Impe, A.; Coxon, J. P.; Goble, D. J.; Wenderoth, N.; Swinnen, S. P.

    2011-01-01

    Depending on task combination, dual-tasking can either be performed successfully or can lead to performance decrements in one or both tasks. Interference is believed to be caused by limitations in central processing, i.e. structural interference between the neural activation patterns associated with each task. In the present study, single- and…

  18. Unfinished tasks foster rumination and impair sleeping - particularly if leaders have high performance expectations.

    PubMed

    Syrek, Christine J; Antoni, Conny H

    2014-10-01

    This study examines the relationship between time pressure and unfinished tasks as work stressors on employee well-being. Relatively little is known about the effect of unfinished tasks on well-being. Specifically, excluding the impact of time pressure, we examined whether the feeling of not having finished the week's tasks fosters perseverative cognitions and impairs sleep. Additionally, we proposed that leader performance expectations moderate these relationships. In more detail, we expected the detrimental effect of unfinished tasks on both rumination and sleep would be enhanced if leader expectations were perceived to be high. In total, 89 employees filled out online diary surveys both before and after the weekend over a 5-week period. Multilevel growth modeling revealed that time pressure and unfinished tasks impacted rumination and sleep on the weekend. Further, our results supported our hypothesis that unfinished tasks explain unique variance in the dependent variables above and beyond the influence of time pressure. Moreover, we found the relationship between unfinished tasks and both rumination and sleep was moderated by leader performance expectations. Our results emphasize the importance of unfinished tasks as a stressor and highlight that leadership, specifically in the form of performance expectations, contributes significantly to the strength of this relationship.

  19. The Effect of Video Game “Warm-up” on Performance of Laparoscopic Surgery Tasks

    PubMed Central

    Gentile, Douglas A.; Hanigan, Kevin; Danner, Omar K.

    2012-01-01

    Background: Performing laparoscopic procedures requires special training and has been documented as a significant source of surgical errors. “Warming up” before performing a task has been shown to enhance performance. This study investigates whether surgeons benefit from “warming up” using select video games immediately before performing laparoscopic partial tasks and clinical tasks. Methods: This study included 303 surgeons (249 men and 54 women). Participants were split into a control (n=180) and an experimental group (n=123). The experimental group played 3 previously validated video games for 6 minutes before task sessions. The Cobra Rope partial task and suturing exercises were performed immediately after the warm-up sessions. Results: Surgeons who played video games prior to the Cobra Rope drill were significantly faster on their first attempt and across all 10 trials. The experimental and control groups were significantly different in their total suturing scores (t=2.28, df=288, P<.05). The overall Top Gun score showed that the experimental group performed marginally better overall. Conclusion: This study demonstrates that subjects completing “warming-up” sessions with select video games prior to performing laparoscopic partial and clinical tasks (intracorporeal suturing) were faster and had fewer errors than participants not engaging in “warm-up.” More study is needed to determine whether this translates into superior procedural execution in the clinical setting. PMID:22906322

  20. Investigating Conversational Dynamics: Interactive Alignment, Interpersonal Synergy, and Collective Task Performance

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Fusaroli, Riccardo; Tylén, Kristian

    2016-01-01

    This study investigates interpersonal processes underlying dialog by comparing two approaches, "interactive alignment" and "interpersonal synergy", and assesses how they predict collective performance in a joint task. While the interactive alignment approach highlights imitative patterns between interlocutors, the synergy…

  1. Effects of task interdependence on the relationship between helping behavior and group performance.

    PubMed

    Bachrach, Daniel G; Powell, Benjamin C; Collins, Brian J; Richey, R Glenn

    2006-11-01

    The authors examine whether task interdependence moderates the relationship between the helping form of organizational citizenship behavior (OCB) and group performance. In a laboratory study, 62 groups with 3 members each completed a card-sequencing activity in which the level of task interdependence among group members was manipulated. Independent evaluators assessed helping by viewing videotapes of the groups' interactions during the sequencing activities. Performance was measured as a combined function of group speed and accuracy. Two prior field studies reported contradictory results regarding the impact of helping on group performance. Results from this study suggest that task interdependence may explain these results, and that the relationship between helping and group performance depends on the level of task interdependence required of group members.

  2. 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.

  3. Male bumblebees, Bombus terrestris, perform equally well as workers in a serial colour-learning task

    PubMed Central

    Wolf, Stephan; Chittka, Lars

    2016-01-01

    The learning capacities of males and females may differ with sex-specific behavioural requirements. Bumblebees provide a useful model system to explore how different lifestyles are reflected in learning abilities, because their (female but sterile) workers and males engage in fundamentally different behaviour routines. Bumblebee males, like workers, embark on active flower foraging but in contrast to workers they have to trade off their feeding with mate search, potentially affecting their abilities to learn and utilize floral cues efficiently during foraging. We used a serial colour-learning task with freely flying males and workers to compare their ability to flexibly learn visual floral cues with reward in a foraging scenario that changed over time. Male bumblebees did not differ from workers in both their learning speed and their ability to overcome previously acquired associations, when these ceased to predict reward. In all foraging tasks we found a significant improvement in choice accuracy in both sexes over the course of the training. In both sexes, the characteristics of the foraging performance depended largely on the colour difference of the two presented feeder types. Large colour distances entailed fast and reliable learning of the rewarding feeders whereas choice accuracy on highly similar colours improved significantly more slowly. Conversely, switching from a learned feeder type to a novel one was fastest for similar feeder colours and slow for highly different ones. Overall, we show that behavioural sex dimorphism in bumblebees did not affect their learning abilities beyond the mating context. We discuss the possible drivers and limitations shaping the foraging abilities of males and workers and implications for pollination ecology. We also suggest stingless male bumblebees as an advantageous alternative model system for the study of pollinator cognition. PMID:26877542

  4. Housing conditions affect rat responses to two types of ambiguity in a reward–reward discrimination cognitive bias task

    PubMed Central

    Parker, Richard M.A.; Paul, Elizabeth S.; Burman, Oliver H.P.; Browne, William J.; Mendl, Michael

    2014-01-01

    Decision-making under ambiguity in cognitive bias tasks is a promising new indicator of affective valence in animals. Rat studies support the hypothesis that animals in a negative affective state evaluate ambiguous cues negatively. Prior automated operant go/go judgement bias tasks have involved training rats that an auditory cue of one frequency predicts a Reward and a cue of a different frequency predicts a Punisher (RP task), and then measuring whether ambiguous cues of intermediate frequency are judged as predicting reward (‘optimism’) or punishment (‘pessimism’). We investigated whether an automated Reward–Reward (RR) task yielded similar results to, and was faster to train than, RP tasks. We also introduced a new ambiguity test (simultaneous presentation of the two training cues) alongside the standard single ambiguous cue test. Half of the rats experienced an unpredictable housing treatment (UHT) designed to induce a negative state. Control rats were relatively ‘pessimistic’, whilst UHT rats were quicker, but no less accurate, in their responses in the RR test, and showed less anxiety-like behaviour in independent tests. A possible reason for these findings is that rats adapted to and were stimulated by UHT, whilst control rats in a predictable environment were more sensitive to novelty and change. Responses in the new ambiguity test correlated positively with those in single ambiguous cue tests, and may provide a measure of attention bias. The RR task was quicker to train than previous automated RP tasks. Together, they could be used to disentangle how reward and punishment processes underpin affect-induced cognitive biases. PMID:25106739

  5. Housing conditions affect rat responses to two types of ambiguity in a reward-reward discrimination cognitive bias task.

    PubMed

    Parker, Richard M A; Paul, Elizabeth S; Burman, Oliver H P; Browne, William J; Mendl, Michael

    2014-11-01

    Decision-making under ambiguity in cognitive bias tasks is a promising new indicator of affective valence in animals. Rat studies support the hypothesis that animals in a negative affective state evaluate ambiguous cues negatively. Prior automated operant go/go judgement bias tasks have involved training rats that an auditory cue of one frequency predicts a Reward and a cue of a different frequency predicts a Punisher (RP task), and then measuring whether ambiguous cues of intermediate frequency are judged as predicting reward ('optimism') or punishment ('pessimism'). We investigated whether an automated Reward-Reward (RR) task yielded similar results to, and was faster to train than, RP tasks. We also introduced a new ambiguity test (simultaneous presentation of the two training cues) alongside the standard single ambiguous cue test. Half of the rats experienced an unpredictable housing treatment (UHT) designed to induce a negative state. Control rats were relatively 'pessimistic', whilst UHT rats were quicker, but no less accurate, in their responses in the RR test, and showed less anxiety-like behaviour in independent tests. A possible reason for these findings is that rats adapted to and were stimulated by UHT, whilst control rats in a predictable environment were more sensitive to novelty and change. Responses in the new ambiguity test correlated positively with those in single ambiguous cue tests, and may provide a measure of attention bias. The RR task was quicker to train than previous automated RP tasks. Together, they could be used to disentangle how reward and punishment processes underpin affect-induced cognitive biases.

  6. Housing conditions affect rat responses to two types of ambiguity in a reward-reward discrimination cognitive bias task.

    PubMed

    Parker, Richard M A; Paul, Elizabeth S; Burman, Oliver H P; Browne, William J; Mendl, Michael

    2014-11-01

    Decision-making under ambiguity in cognitive bias tasks is a promising new indicator of affective valence in animals. Rat studies support the hypothesis that animals in a negative affective state evaluate ambiguous cues negatively. Prior automated operant go/go judgement bias tasks have involved training rats that an auditory cue of one frequency predicts a Reward and a cue of a different frequency predicts a Punisher (RP task), and then measuring whether ambiguous cues of intermediate frequency are judged as predicting reward ('optimism') or punishment ('pessimism'). We investigated whether an automated Reward-Reward (RR) task yielded similar results to, and was faster to train than, RP tasks. We also introduced a new ambiguity test (simultaneous presentation of the two training cues) alongside the standard single ambiguous cue test. Half of the rats experienced an unpredictable housing treatment (UHT) designed to induce a negative state. Control rats were relatively 'pessimistic', whilst UHT rats were quicker, but no less accurate, in their responses in the RR test, and showed less anxiety-like behaviour in independent tests. A possible reason for these findings is that rats adapted to and were stimulated by UHT, whilst control rats in a predictable environment were more sensitive to novelty and change. Responses in the new ambiguity test correlated positively with those in single ambiguous cue tests, and may provide a measure of attention bias. The RR task was quicker to train than previous automated RP tasks. Together, they could be used to disentangle how reward and punishment processes underpin affect-induced cognitive biases. PMID:25106739

  7. Beyond capacity limitations: determinants of word recall performance on verbal working memory span tasks in children with SLI.

    PubMed

    Mainela-Arnold, Elina; Evans, Julia L

    2005-08-01

    Reduced verbal working memory capacity has been proposed as a possible account of language impairments in specific language impairment (SLI). Studies have shown, however, that differences in strength of linguistic representations in the form of word frequency affect list recall and performance on verbal working memory tasks. This suggests that verbal memory capacity and long-term linguistic knowledge may not be distinct constructs. It has been suggested that linguistic representations in SLI are weak in ways that result in a breakdown in language processing on tasks that require manipulation of unfamiliar material. In this study, the effects of word frequency, long-term linguistic knowledge, and serial order position on recall performance in the competing language processing task (CLPT) were investigated in 10 children with SLI and 10 age-matched peers (age 8 years 6 months to 12 years 4 months). The children with SLI recalled significantly fewer target words on the CLPT as compared with their age-matched controls. The SLI group did not differ, however, in their ability to recall target words having high word frequency but were significantly poorer in their ability to recall words on the CLPT having low word frequency. Differences in receptive and expressive language abilities also appeared closely related to performance on the CLPT, suggesting that working memory capacity is not distinct from language knowledge and that degraded linguistic representations may have an effect on performance on verbal working memory span tasks in children with SLI.

  8. Exposure to scientific theories affects women's math performance.

    PubMed

    Dar-Nimrod, Ilan; Heine, Steven J

    2006-10-20

    Stereotype threat occurs when stereotyped groups perform worse as their group membership is highlighted. We investigated whether stereotype threat is affected by accounts for the origins of stereotypes. In two studies, women who read of genetic causes of sex differences performed worse on math tests than those who read of experiential causes.

  9. Factors Affecting Performance of Undergraduate Students in Construction Related Disciplines

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Olatunji, Samuel Olusola; Aghimien, Douglas Omoregie; Oke, Ayodeji Emmanuel; Olushola, Emmanuel

    2016-01-01

    Academic performance of students in Nigerian institutions has been of much concern to all and sundry hence the need to assess the factors affecting performance of undergraduate students in construction related discipline in Nigeria. A survey design was employed with questionnaires administered on students in the department of Quantity Surveying,…

  10. Focus of Attention Affects Performance of Motor Skills in Music

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Duke, Robert A.; Cash, Carla Davis; Allen, Sarah E.

    2011-01-01

    To test the extent to which learners performing a simple keyboard passage would be affected by directing their focus of attention to different aspects of their movements, 16 music majors performed a brief keyboard passage under each of four focus conditions arranged in a counterbalanced design--a total of 64 experimental sessions. As they…

  11. Young Children's Affective Decision-Making in a Gambling Task: Does Difficulty in Learning the Gain/Loss Schedule Matter?

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Gao, Shan; Wei, Yonggang; Bai, Junjie; Lin, Chongde; Li, Hong

    2009-01-01

    This research investigated the development of affective decision-making (ADM) during early childhood, in particular role of difficulty in learning a gain/loss schedule. In Experiment 1, we administrated the Children's Gambling Task (CGT) to 60 Chinese children aged 3 and 4, replicating the results obtained by Kerr and Zelazo [Kerr, A., & Zelazo,…

  12. Children's Use of the Yahooligans! Web Search Engine: I. Cognitive, Physical, and Affective Behaviors on Fact-based Search Tasks.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Bilal, Dania

    2000-01-01

    Reports on a research project that investigated seventh grade science students' cognitive, affective, and physical behaviors as they used the Yahooligans! search engine to find information on a specific search task. Describes measurement techniques that included software, interviews, and questionnaires, and discusses implications for user training…

  13. Estimated effects of ionizing radiation upon military task performance: individual combat crewmember assessment

    SciTech Connect

    Anno, G.H.; Wilson, D.B.

    1984-04-01

    Quantitative estimates are developed of the performance levels for selected individual Army combat crewmembers exposed to prompt ionizing radiation from nuclear weapons. The performance levels, expressed in percent of normal (baseline) task performance, provide information for military operations planning, combat training, and computer simulation modeling of combat crew and unit effectiveness. The methodology is described where data from two separate bodies of information: acute radiation sickness symptomatology, and judgment of task performance time from Army combat crew questionnaires - are integrated to compute performance levels as a function of dose (free-in-air) and post-exposure time.

  14. Pre-assessment exposure to schedule-correlated stimuli affects choice responding for tasks.

    PubMed

    Kelley, Michael E; Shamlian, Kenneth; Lomas, Joanna E; Pabico, Robert S

    2011-01-01

    Establishing compliance with academic and daily-living-skills instructions is important for shaping and maintaining behavior. In the current study, we exposed two participants to two stimulus conditions that were correlated with different consequences (more work vs. reinforcement) subsequent to a baseline in which responding was undifferentiated. Exposure to the differential consequences produced greater cooperation with the instruction to "pick one" task and response allocation towards the stimulus that was correlated with reinforcement as a consequence for task completion. These results suggest that clarifying the consequences of choice making may facilitate cooperation with task instructions.

  15. Affect and Managerial Performance: A Test of the Sadder-but-Wiser vs. Happier-and-Smarter Hypotheses.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Staw, Barry M.; Barsade, Sigal G.

    1993-01-01

    Provides a comparative test of two psychological theories concerning the relationship between affect and performance. Used managerial simulations to test whether people with positive dispositions perform better or worse on both decisional and interpersonal tasks. Results support the happier-and-smarter, as opposed to the sadder-but-wiser,…

  16. Developmental stress impairs performance on an association task in male and female songbirds, but impairs auditory learning in females only.

    PubMed

    Farrell, Tara M; Morgan, Amanda; MacDougall-Shackleton, Scott A

    2016-01-01

    In songbirds, early-life environments critically shape song development. Many studies have demonstrated that developmental stress impairs song learning and the development of song-control regions of the brain in males. However, song has evolved through signaller-receiver networks and the effect stress has on the ability to receive auditory signals is equally important, especially for females who use song as an indicator of mate quality. Female song preferences have been the metric used to evaluate how developmental stress affects auditory learning, but preferences are shaped by many non-cognitive factors and preclude the evaluation of auditory learning abilities in males. To determine whether developmental stress specifically affects auditory learning in both sexes, we subjected juvenile European starlings, Sturnus vulgaris, to either an ad libitum or an unpredictable food supply treatment from 35 to 115 days of age. In adulthood, we assessed learning of both auditory and visual discrimination tasks. Females reared in the experimental group were slower than females in the control group to acquire a relative frequency auditory task, and slower than their male counterparts to acquire an absolute frequency auditory task. There was no difference in auditory performance between treatment groups for males. However, on the colour association task, birds from the experimental group committed more errors per trial than control birds. There was no correlation in performance across the cognitive tasks. Developmental stress did not affect all cognitive processes equally across the sexes. Our results suggest that the male auditory system may be more robust to developmental stress than that of females.

  17. The effects of achievement goals on performance, enjoyment, and practice of a novel motor task.

    PubMed

    Kavussanu, Maria; Morris, Rebecca L; Ring, Christopher

    2009-10-01

    We examined the effects of trichotomous achievement goals on performance, enjoyment, and practice of a golf-putting task. Male (n = 39) and female (n = 63) undergraduate students participated in the experiment in exchange for course credit. Participants were assigned to a mastery, performance-approach, or performance-avoidance goal condition and completed seven blocks of 10 trials (one for baseline, four for the experimental phase, and two for the transfer phase) of a golf-putting task. Distance from the target was measured and performance measures of accuracy and consistency were calculated. Self-reported enjoyment during the baseline and experimental phases and practice during a 5-min period before and following the experimental task were also assessed. Performance accuracy and consistency improved similarly among the three groups. Individuals in all three conditions reported enjoying the task to the same extent. Mastery participants practiced for longer than performance-approach participants during the practice period. Performance-avoidance participants did not differ significantly from the other two groups. The three goals were equally effective in promoting performance and enjoyment of the golf-putting task. The differential practice results for the two performance goals suggest that they should be considered separately. PMID:19735037

  18. Do frailty and cognitive impairment affect dual-task cost during walking in the oldest old institutionalized patients?

    PubMed

    Cadore, Eduardo L; Casas-Herrero, Alvaro; Zambom-Ferraresi, Fabricio; Martínez-Ramírez, Alicia; Millor, Nora; Gómez, Marisol; Moneo, Ana B Bays; Izquierdo, Mikel

    2015-12-01

    The objective of this study was to investigate dual-task costs in several elderly populations, including robust oldest old, frail oldest old with MCI, frail oldest old without MCI, and frail elderly with dementia. Sixty-four elderly men and women categorized into frail without MCI (age 93.4 ± 3.2 years, n = 20), frail with MCI (age 92.4 ± 4.2 years, n = 13), robust (age 88.2 ± 4.1 years, n = 10), and patients with dementia (age 88.1 ± 5.1 years, n = 21). Five-meter gait ability and timed-up-and-go (TUG) tests with single and dual-task performance were assessed in the groups. Dual-task cost in both 5-m habitual gait velocity test and TUG test was calculated by the time differences between single and dual-task performance. The robust group exhibited better 5-m gait and TUG test performances in the single and dual-task conditions compared with the other three groups (P < 0.001), and the frail and frail + MCI groups exhibited better performances than the dementia group (P < 0.001). No significant differences were observed between the frail and frail + MCI groups. However, all groups exhibited lower gait velocities in the verbal and arithmetic task conditions, but the dual-task cost of the groups were similar. Robust individuals exhibited superior single and dual-task walking performances than the other three groups, and the frail and frail + MCI individuals exhibited performances that were superior to those of the patients with dementia. However, the dual-task costs, i.e., the changes in gait performance when elderly participants switch from a single to a dual task, were similar among all four of the investigated groups. Therefore, these results demonstrated that the magnitude of the impairment in gait pattern is independent of frailty and cognitive impairment status.

  19. Do frailty and cognitive impairment affect dual-task cost during walking in the oldest old institutionalized patients?

    PubMed

    Cadore, Eduardo L; Casas-Herrero, Alvaro; Zambom-Ferraresi, Fabricio; Martínez-Ramírez, Alicia; Millor, Nora; Gómez, Marisol; Moneo, Ana B Bays; Izquierdo, Mikel

    2015-12-01

    The objective of this study was to investigate dual-task costs in several elderly populations, including robust oldest old, frail oldest old with MCI, frail oldest old without MCI, and frail elderly with dementia. Sixty-four elderly men and women categorized into frail without MCI (age 93.4 ± 3.2 years, n = 20), frail with MCI (age 92.4 ± 4.2 years, n = 13), robust (age 88.2 ± 4.1 years, n = 10), and patients with dementia (age 88.1 ± 5.1 years, n = 21). Five-meter gait ability and timed-up-and-go (TUG) tests with single and dual-task performance were assessed in the groups. Dual-task cost in both 5-m habitual gait velocity test and TUG test was calculated by the time differences between single and dual-task performance. The robust group exhibited better 5-m gait and TUG test performances in the single and dual-task conditions compared with the other three groups (P < 0.001), and the frail and frail + MCI groups exhibited better performances than the dementia group (P < 0.001). No significant differences were observed between the frail and frail + MCI groups. However, all groups exhibited lower gait velocities in the verbal and arithmetic task conditions, but the dual-task cost of the groups were similar. Robust individuals exhibited superior single and dual-task walking performances than the other three groups, and the frail and frail + MCI individuals exhibited performances that were superior to those of the patients with dementia. However, the dual-task costs, i.e., the changes in gait performance when elderly participants switch from a single to a dual task, were similar among all four of the investigated groups. Therefore, these results demonstrated that the magnitude of the impairment in gait pattern is independent of frailty and cognitive impairment status. PMID:26667940

  20. Level of automation effects on performance, situation awareness and workload in a dynamic control task.

    PubMed

    Endsley, M R; Kaber, D B

    1999-03-01

    Various levels of automation (LOA) designating the degree of human operator and computer control were explored within the context of a dynamic control task as a means of improving overall human/machine performance. Automated systems have traditionally been explored as binary function allocations; either the human or the machine is assigned to a given task. More recently, intermediary levels of automation have been discussed as a means of maintaining operator involvement in system performance, leading to improvements in situation awareness and reductions in out-of-the-loop performance problems. A LOA taxonomy applicable to a wide range of psychomotor and cognitive tasks is presented here. The taxonomy comprises various schemes of generic control system function allocations. The functions allocated to a human operator and/or computer included monitoring displays, generating processing options, selecting an 'optimal' option and implementing that option. The impact of the LOA taxonomy was assessed within a dynamic and complex cognitive control task by measuring its effect on human/system performance, situation awareness and workload. Thirty subjects performed simulation trials involving various levels of automation. Several automation failures occurred and out-of-the-loop performance decrements were assessed. Results suggest that, in terms of performance, human operators benefit most from automation of the implementation portion of the task, but only under normal operating conditions; in contrast, removal of the operator from task implementation is detrimental to performance recovery if the automated system fails. Joint human/system option generation significantly degraded performance in comparison to human or automated option generation alone. Lower operator workload and higher situation awareness were observed under automation of the decision making portion of the task (i.e. selection of options), although human/system performance was only slightly improved. The

  1. Dual-Task Performance with Ideomotor-Compatible Tasks: Is the Central Processing Bottleneck Intact, Bypassed, or Shifted in Locus?

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Lien, Mei-Ching; McCann, Robert S.; Ruthruff, Eric; Proctor, Robert W.

    2005-01-01

    The present study examined whether the central bottleneck, assumed to be primarily responsible for the psychological refractory period (PRP) effect, is intact, bypassed, or shifted in locus with ideomotor (IM)-compatible tasks. In 4 experiments, factorial combinations of IM- and non-IM-compatible tasks were used for Task 1 and Task 2. All…

  2. Disruption of Spatial Task Performance in Anorexia Nervosa

    PubMed Central

    Guardia, Dewi; Carey, Aurélie; Cottencin, Olivier; Thomas, Pierre; Luyat, Marion

    2013-01-01

    In anorexia nervosa (AN), body distortions have been associated with parietal cortex (PC) dysfunction. The PC is the anatomical substrate for a supramodal reference framework involved in spatial orientation constancy. Here, we sought to evaluate spatial orientation constancy and the perception of body orientation in AN patients. In the present study, we investigated the effect of passive lateral body inclination on the visual and tactile subjective vertical (SV) and body Z-axis in 25 AN patients and 25 healthy controls. Subjects performed visual- and tactile-spatial judgments of axis orientations in an upright position and tilted 90° clockwise or counterclockwise. We observed a significant deviation of the tactile and visual SV towards the body (an A-effect) under tilted conditions, suggesting a multisensory impairment in spatial orientation. Deviation of the Z-axis in the direction of the tilt was also observed in the AN group. The greater A-effect in AN patients may reflect reduced interoceptive awareness and thus inadequate consideration of gravitational inflow. Furthermore, marked body weight loss could decrease the somatosensory inputs required for spatial orientation. Our study results suggest that spatial references are impaired in AN. This may be due to particular integration of visual, tactile and gravitational information (e.g. vestibular and proprioceptive cues) in the PC. PMID:23349990

  3. Performance of a motor task learned ON levodopa deteriorates when subsequently practiced OFF

    PubMed Central

    Anderson, E.D.; Horak, F.B.; Lasarev, M.R.; Nutt, J. G.

    2013-01-01

    Background Studies in animals and in people with Parkinson's Disease (PD) demonstrate complex effects of dopamine on learning motor tasks; its effect on retention of motor learning has received little attention. Recent animal studies demonstrate that practicing a task in the OFF state, when initially learned in the ON state, leads to progressive deterioration in performance. Methods We measured the acquisition and retention of 3 different motor tasks in the presence and absence of levodopa. Twenty individuals with Hoehn and Yahr Stage 1.5-3 PD practiced the tasks for two, 4-day weeks, half practicing ON levodopa the first week and OFF the second week. The other half practiced OFF levodopa both weeks. The tasks were: 1. alternate tapping of two keys, 2. moving the body toward two targets on a posturography device and 3. mirror drawing of a star. Results For the finger tapping and body movement tests, those who practiced ON the first week had a progressive decline in performance with practice during Week 2, while subjects OFF during Week 1 maintained or improved. In contrast, for the mirror task, subjects ON levodopa initially had much more difficulty completing the task compared to subjects who practiced OFF. Both groups improved with practice during the first week and had flat performance the second week. Conclusions These data suggest that performance of speed-accuracy tasks learned in the ON state may progressively worsen if practiced in the OFF state. In addition, performance, but not learning, of some tasks may be impeded by levodopa. PMID:24132873

  4. Time-on-task decrements in "steer clear" performance of patients with sleep apnea and narcolepsy

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Findley, L. J.; Suratt, P. M.; Dinges, D. F.

    1999-01-01

    Loss of attention with time-on-task reflects the increasing instability of the waking state during performance in experimentally induced sleepiness. To determine whether patients with disorders of excessive sleepiness also displayed time-on-task decrements indicative of wake state instability, visual sustained attention performance on "Steer Clear," a computerized simple RT driving simulation task, was compared among 31 patients with untreated sleep apnea, 16 patients with narcolepsy, and 14 healthy control subjects. Vigilance decrement functions were generated by analyzing the number of collisions in each of six four-minute periods of Steer Clear task performance in a mixed-model analysis of variance and linear regression equations. As expected, patients had more Steer Clear collisions than control subjects (p=0.006). However, the inter-subject variability in errors among the narcoleptic patients was four-fold that of the apnea patients, and 100-fold that of the controls volunteers; the variance in errors among untreated apnea patients was 27-times that of controls. The results of transformed collision data revealed main effects for group (p=0.006), time-on-task (p=0.001), and a significant interaction (p=0.022). Control subjects showed no clear evidence of increasing collision errors with time-on-task (adjusted R2=0.22), while apnea patients showed a trend toward vigilance decrement (adjusted R2=0.42, p=0.097), and narcolepsy patients evidenced a robust linear vigilance decrement (adjusted R2=0.87, p=0.004). The association of disorders of excessive somnolence with escalating time-on-task decrements makes it imperative that when assessment of neurobehavioral performance is conducted in patients, it involves task durations and analyses that will evaluate the underlying vulnerability of potentially sleepy patients to decrements over time in tasks that require sustained attention and timely responses, both of which are key components in safe driving performance.

  5. Performance of the marmoset monkey on computerized tasks of attention and working memory.

    PubMed

    Spinelli, Simona; Pennanen, Luis; Dettling, Andrea C; Feldon, Joram; Higgins, Guy A; Pryce, Christopher R

    2004-04-01

    The CAmbridge Neuropsychological Test Automated Battery (CANTAB) is a computerised battery of neuropsychological tests presented as stimuli on a touch-sensitive computer screen that has been used to assess a wide range of cognitive functions in neuropsychiatric patients, healthy volunteers, and species of non-human primate, primarily the rhesus macaque. The common marmoset is a small-bodied, tractable simian primate that breeds well under laboratory conditions. This primate has been quite extensively studied in terms of its abilities and limitations with respect to appetitive cognitive conditioning. However, the CANTAB versions of sustained/divided attention and working memory tasks have to-date not been studied in the marmoset. Here we describe adult marmoset performance on the CANTAB five-choice serial reaction time task, a delayed match-to-position task, and a task derived from the CANTAB visuo-spatial paired associates learning task that constituted two, concurrent delayed match-to-position tasks. The acquisition and stable longitudinal performance of these tasks provide strong evidence that the marmoset, in addition to the macaque, can be the species of choice for CANTAB-based drug and lesion studies of cognitive function, using tasks similar to those deployed in the study of human cognition and diagnosis of neuropsychiatric disorders.

  6. Evaluation of an operant successive negative contrast task as a method to study affective state in rodents.

    PubMed

    Mitchell, Emma N; Marston, Hugh M; Nutt, David J; Robinson, Emma S J

    2012-10-01

    Successive negative contrast (SNC) describes a change in an animal's behaviour following a downshift in the quantitative or qualitative value of a reward. Previous studies suggest both consummatory and instrumental paradigms have the potential to provide an objective measure of affective state in rodents. We first investigated whether an SNC effect is observed in an operant task based on the 5 choice serial reaction time task. We then tested whether this SNC effect was sensitive to differences in affective state induced by manipulating the home cage environment. In animals trained to receive a four pellet food reward, reinforcer downshift to a single reward pellet induced a significant slowing of both correct response and collection latencies to levels below that of animals which had only ever received the lower value reward, indicating a SNC effect. Home cage environmental enrichment resulted in a paradoxical effect on responses in this SNC task where animals housed in a barren environment showed faster baseline response times and the SNC effect was significantly attenuated. These data suggest that the animals housed in the barren conditions were in a more positive affective and/or motivational state during testing than animals housed in enriched cages. Although opposite to the effects of housing conditions in a runway SNC task, these data could be explained by the enriching effects of daily training in an operant task. Rather than inducing a negative affective state in rats, the barren housing conditions resulted in a relatively more positive affective state in the chamber when compared to animals living in a highly enriched environment. PMID:22732261

  7. Procedural Performance Benefits after Excitotoxic Hippocampal Lesions in the Rat Sequential Reaction Time Task.

    PubMed

    Busse, Sebastian; Schwarting, Rainer K W

    2016-01-01

    It is widely agreed upon that hippocampal function is linked to episodic-like and spatial memory across various species, for example, rodents. However, the interplay between hippocampal function and other types of learning and memory, like procedural stimulus-response or sequential learning, is less clear. Recently (Eckart et al. in Hippocampus 22:1202-1214, 2012), we showed that excitotoxic hippocampal lesions, which mainly affected its dorsal part, led not only to the expected deficits in a spatial and episodic-like memory task, namely the object place recognition test, but also to substantial improvements in terms of speed and accuracy in a rat adaption of the human sequential reaction time task (SRTT). The design of that experiment, however, which included fixed test durations per training day, led to the fact that lesioned animals gained more instrumental experience, which may partly have accounted for their enhanced performance. In order to rule out such a potential confound, we performed the present experiment on rats with similar ibotenic lesions aiming at the dorsal hippocampus, but we now kept the amount of correct instrumental responses and reinforcements on the same level as in controls. Our data revealed that lesioned animals were still able to complete the SRTT in a substantially smaller amount of time, when compared to control and sham-operated animals, although no differences were observable in terms of speed or accuracy. Also, the animals with lesions showed impaired extinction in a subsequent test where rewards were omitted. The former effect can primarily be attributed to shorter post-reinforcement pauses in the lesioned animals, and the possible mechanisms of this and the extinction effect will be addressed in the discussion.

  8. Effect of Task Constraint on Reaching Performance in Children with Spastic Diplegic Cerebral Palsy

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Ju, Yun-Huei; You, Jia-Yuan; Cherng, Rong-Ju

    2010-01-01

    The purposes of the study were to examine the effect of task constraint on the reaching performance in children with spastic cerebral palsy (CP) and to examine the correlations between the reaching performance and postural control. Eight children with CP and 16 typically developing (TD) children participated in the study. They performed a…

  9. Does Performance on the Standard Antisaccade Task Meet the Co-Familiality Criterion for an Endophenotype?

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Levy, Deborah L.; Bowman, Elizabeth A.; Abel, Larry; Krastoshevsky, Olga; Krause, Verena; Mendell, Nancy R.

    2008-01-01

    The "co-familiality" criterion for an endophenotype has two requirements: (1) clinically unaffected relatives as a group should show both a shift in mean performance and an increase in variance compared with controls; (2) performance scores should be heritable. Performance on the antisaccade task is one of several candidate endophenotypes for…

  10. When co-action eliminates the Simon effect: disentangling the impact of co-actor's presence and task sharing on joint-task performance.

    PubMed

    Sellaro, Roberta; Treccani, Barbara; Rubichi, Sandro; Cubelli, Roberto

    2013-01-01

    This study aimed at assessing whether the mere belief of performing a task with another person, who is in charge of the complementary part of the task, is sufficient for the so-called joint Simon effect to occur. In all three experiments of the study, participants sat alone in a room and underwent two consecutive Go/NoGo tasks that were identical except for the instructions. In Experiment 1, participants performed the task first individually (baseline task), and then either co-acting with another person who responded from an unknown location to the NoGo stimuli (joint task) or imaging themselves responding to the NoGo stimuli (imaginative task). Relative to the baseline, the instructions of the imaginative task made the Simon effect occur, while those of the joint task were ineffective in eliciting the effect. This result suggests that sharing a task with a person who is known to be in charge of the complementary task, but is not physically present, is not sufficient to induce the representation of an alternative response able to produce interference, which happens instead when the instructions explicitly require to imagine such a response. Interestingly, we observed that when the Simon effect was already present in the baseline task (i.e., when the response alternative to the Go response was represented in the individual task due to non-social factors), it disappeared in the joint task. We propose that, when no information about the co-actor's position is available, the division of labor between the participant and co-actor allows participants to filter out the possible (incidental) representation of the alternative response from their task representation, thus eliminating potential sources of interference. This account is supported by the results of Experiments 2 and 3 and suggests that under certain circumstances task-sharing may reduce the interference produced by the irrelevant information, rather than increase it.

  11. When co-action eliminates the Simon effect: disentangling the impact of co-actor's presence and task sharing on joint-task performance

    PubMed Central

    Sellaro, Roberta; Treccani, Barbara; Rubichi, Sandro; Cubelli, Roberto

    2013-01-01

    This study aimed at assessing whether the mere belief of performing a task with another person, who is in charge of the complementary part of the task, is sufficient for the so-called joint Simon effect to occur. In all three experiments of the study, participants sat alone in a room and underwent two consecutive Go/NoGo tasks that were identical except for the instructions. In Experiment 1, participants performed the task first individually (baseline task), and then either co-acting with another person who responded from an unknown location to the NoGo stimuli (joint task) or imaging themselves responding to the NoGo stimuli (imaginative task). Relative to the baseline, the instructions of the imaginative task made the Simon effect occur, while those of the joint task were ineffective in eliciting the effect. This result suggests that sharing a task with a person who is known to be in charge of the complementary task, but is not physically present, is not sufficient to induce the representation of an alternative response able to produce interference, which happens instead when the instructions explicitly require to imagine such a response. Interestingly, we observed that when the Simon effect was already present in the baseline task (i.e., when the response alternative to the Go response was represented in the individual task due to non-social factors), it disappeared in the joint task. We propose that, when no information about the co-actor's position is available, the division of labor between the participant and co-actor allows participants to filter out the possible (incidental) representation of the alternative response from their task representation, thus eliminating potential sources of interference. This account is supported by the results of Experiments 2 and 3 and suggests that under certain circumstances task-sharing may reduce the interference produced by the irrelevant information, rather than increase it. PMID:24312066

  12. Affective decision making under uncertainty during a plausible aviation task: an fMRI study.

    PubMed

    Causse, Mickaël; Péran, Patrice; Dehais, Frédéric; Caravasso, Chiara Falletta; Zeffiro, Thomas; Sabatini, Umberto; Pastor, Josette

    2013-05-01

    In aeronautics, plan continuation error (PCE) represents failure to revise a flight plan despite emerging evidence suggesting that it is no longer safe. Assuming that PCE may be associated with a shift from cold to hot reasoning, we hypothesized that this transition may result from a large range of strong negative emotional influences linked with the decision to abort a landing and circle for a repeat attempt, referred to as a "go-around". We investigated this hypothesis by combining functional neuroimaging with an ecologically valid aviation task performed under contextual variation in incentive and situational uncertainty. Our goal was to identify regional brain activity related to the sorts of conservative or liberal decision-making strategies engaged when participants were both exposed to a financial payoff matrix constructed to bias responses in favor of landing acceptance, while they were simultaneously experiencing maximum levels of uncertainty related to high levels of stimulus ambiguity. Combined with the observed behavioral outcomes, our neuroimaging results revealed a shift from cold to hot decision making in response to high uncertainty when participants were exposed to the financial incentive. Most notably, while we observed activity increases in response to uncertainty in many frontal regions such as dorsolateral prefrontal cortex (DLPFC) and anterior cingulate cortex (ACC), less overall activity was observed when the reward was combined with uncertainty. Moreover, participants with poor decision making, quantified as a lower discriminability index d', exhibited riskier behavior coupled with lower activity in the right DLPFC. These outcomes suggest a disruptive effect of biased financial incentive and high uncertainty on the rational decision-making neural network, and consequently, on decision relevance.

  13. Food's visually perceived fat content affects discrimination speed in an orthogonal spatial task.

    PubMed

    Harrar, Vanessa; Toepel, Ulrike; Murray, Micah M; Spence, Charles

    2011-10-01

    Choosing what to eat is a complex activity for humans. Determining a food's pleasantness requires us to combine information about what is available at a given time with knowledge of the food's palatability, texture, fat content, and other nutritional information. It has been suggested that humans may have an implicit knowledge of a food's fat content based on its appearance; Toepel et al. (Neuroimage 44:967-974, 2009) reported visual-evoked potential modulations after participants viewed images of high-energy, high-fat food (HF), as compared to viewing low-fat food (LF). In the present study, we investigated whether there are any immediate behavioural consequences of these modulations for human performance. HF, LF, or non-food (NF) images were used to exogenously direct participants' attention to either the left or the right. Next, participants made speeded elevation discrimination responses (up vs. down) to visual targets presented either above or below the midline (and at one of three stimulus onset asynchronies: 150, 300, or 450 ms). Participants responded significantly more rapidly following the presentation of a HF image than following the presentation of either LF or NF images, despite the fact that the identity of the images was entirely task-irrelevant. Similar results were found when comparing response speeds following images of high-carbohydrate (HC) food items to low-carbohydrate (LC) food items. These results support the view that people rapidly process (i.e. within a few hundred milliseconds) the fat/carbohydrate/energy value or, perhaps more generally, the pleasantness of food. Potentially as a result of HF/HC food items being more pleasant and thus having a higher incentive value, it seems as though seeing these foods results in a response readiness, or an overall alerting effect, in the human brain.

  14. Baseline performance and learning rate of conceptual and perceptual skill-learning tasks: the effect of moderate to severe traumatic brain injury.

    PubMed

    Vakil, Eli; Lev-Ran Galon, Carmit

    2014-01-01

    Existing literature presents a complex and inconsistent picture of the specific deficiencies involved in skill learning following traumatic brain injury (TBI). In an attempt to address this difficulty, individuals with moderate to severe TBI (n = 29) and a control group (n = 29) were tested with two different skill-learning tasks: conceptual (i.e., Tower of Hanoi Puzzle, TOHP) and perceptual (i.e., mirror reading, MR). Based on previous studies of the effect of divided attention on these tasks and findings regarding the effect of TBI on conceptual and perceptual priming tasks, it was predicted that the group with TBI would show impaired baseline performance compared to controls in the TOHP task though their learning rate would be maintained, while both baseline performance and learning rate on the MR task would be maintained. Consistent with our predictions, overall baseline performance of the group with TBI was impaired in the TOHP test, while the learning rate was not. The learning rate on the MR task was preserved but, contrary to our prediction, response time of the group with TBI was slower than that of controls. The pattern of results observed in the present study was interpreted to possibly reflect an impairment of both the frontal lobes as well as that of diffuse axonal injury, which is well documented as being affected by TBI. The former impairment affects baseline performance of the conceptual learning skill, while the latter affects the overall slower performance of the perceptual learning skill.

  15. Baseline performance and learning rate of conceptual and perceptual skill-learning tasks: the effect of moderate to severe traumatic brain injury.

    PubMed

    Vakil, Eli; Lev-Ran Galon, Carmit

    2014-01-01

    Existing literature presents a complex and inconsistent picture of the specific deficiencies involved in skill learning following traumatic brain injury (TBI). In an attempt to address this difficulty, individuals with moderate to severe TBI (n = 29) and a control group (n = 29) were tested with two different skill-learning tasks: conceptual (i.e., Tower of Hanoi Puzzle, TOHP) and perceptual (i.e., mirror reading, MR). Based on previous studies of the effect of divided attention on these tasks and findings regarding the effect of TBI on conceptual and perceptual priming tasks, it was predicted that the group with TBI would show impaired baseline performance compared to controls in the TOHP task though their learning rate would be maintained, while both baseline performance and learning rate on the MR task would be maintained. Consistent with our predictions, overall baseline performance of the group with TBI was impaired in the TOHP test, while the learning rate was not. The learning rate on the MR task was preserved but, contrary to our prediction, response time of the group with TBI was slower than that of controls. The pattern of results observed in the present study was interpreted to possibly reflect an impairment of both the frontal lobes as well as that of diffuse axonal injury, which is well documented as being affected by TBI. The former impairment affects baseline performance of the conceptual learning skill, while the latter affects the overall slower performance of the perceptual learning skill. PMID:24742199

  16. Increasing optimism abolishes pain-induced impairments in executive task performance.

    PubMed

    Boselie, Jantine J L M; Vancleef, Linda M G; Smeets, Tom; Peters, Madelon L

    2014-02-01

    Coping with the demands of pain diminishes self-regulatory capacity and causes self-regulatory fatigue, which then leads to deteriorated executive task performance. It has been suggested that optimism can counteract the depletion of self-regulatory capacity. This study employed a 2 (optimism/no optimism)×2 (pain/no pain) between-subjects design to explore whether (1) experimentally induced pain (cold pressor task) deteriorates subsequent executive task performance, and (2) whether an optimism induction can counteract this sustained deteriorating effect of pain on executive task performance. Results indicated that although pain led to significantly worse performance on the executive functioning task in the no optimism condition, this sustained deteriorating effect of pain on task performance was abolished in the optimism condition. This finding is imperative because it suggests that optimism may be an important factor to implement in current psychological treatment approaches to diminish the negative impact of chronic pain on the ability to function in daily life.

  17. Color temperature’s impact on task performance and brainwaves of school-age children

    PubMed Central

    Park, YunHee

    2015-01-01

    [Purpose] This study investigated color temperature’s impact on task performance. It presents a scientific analysis of brainwave and task performance time changes, and the results of a self-report type survey. [Subjects] Twenty-four elementary school fifth-grade boys and girls with no visual problems participated in the experiment. [Methods] Physiological reaction times of task performance were measured in a laboratory that could fix and maintain color temperature. Brainwave changes and the task performance times were measured, and a self-report questionnaire was conducted in order to measure of emotional reactions. [Results] Regarding the brainwave changes associated with color temperature, alpha waves were emitted in the O2 area when puzzle tasks were illuminated by orange light and low and high beta waves were emitted in the F3 area under white light. Five items (Brilliant, Soft, Lively, Relaxed, Open) were reported predominantly in responses to orange light in the self-report questionnaire. [Conclusion] The results of this study show that relaxation and stability are not assured when the color temperature is low, and that concentration and cognitive activity are not necessarily easier when the color temperature is high. The color temperature change when performing tasks promoted emotional factors more than brainwave, a biological change. PMID:26644662

  18. Free-Throw Shooting during Dual-Task Performance: Implications for Attentional Demand and Performance

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Price, Jayme; Gill, Diane L.; Etnier, Jennifer; Kornatz, Kurt

    2009-01-01

    In this study, the dual-task paradigm was used to determine peak attentional demand during the free-throw process. Thirty participants completed 40 free-throw trials. The free throw was the primary task, but participants also verbally responded to a tone administered at one of four probe positions (PP). Repeated measures analysis of variance…

  19. Simultaneous dual-task performance reveals parallel response selection after practice

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Hazeltine, Eliot; Teague, Donald; Ivry, Richard B.

    2002-01-01

    E. H. Schumacher, T. L. Seymour, J. M. Glass, D. E. Kieras, and D. E. Meyer (2001) reported that dual-task costs are minimal when participants are practiced and give the 2 tasks equal emphasis. The present research examined whether such findings are compatible with the operation of an efficient response selection bottleneck. Participants trained until they were able to perform both tasks simultaneously without interference. Novel stimulus pairs produced no reaction time costs, arguing against the development of compound stimulus-response associations (Experiment 1). Manipulating the relative onsets (Experiments 2 and 4) and durations (Experiments 3 and 4) of response selection processes did not lead to dual-task costs. The results indicate that the 2 tasks did not share a bottleneck after practice.

  20. NOS1 ex1f-VNTR polymorphism affects prefrontal oxygenation during response inhibition tasks.

    PubMed

    Kopf, Juliane; Schecklmann, Martin; Hahn, Tim; Dieler, Alica C; Herrmann, Martin J; Fallgatter, Andreas J; Reif, Andreas

    2012-11-01

    Impulsivity is a trait shared by many psychiatric disorders and therefore a suitable intermediate phenotype for their underlying biological mechanisms. One of the molecular determinants involved is the NOS1 ex1f-VNTR, whose short variants are associated with a variety of impulsive behaviors. Fifty-six healthy controls were stratified into homozygous long (LL) (30 probands) and short (SS) (26 probands) allele groups. Subjects completed a combined stop-signal go/nogo task, while the oxygenation in the prefrontal cortex was measured with functional near-infrared spectroscopy. Electromyography was recorded to control for differences in muscle activity in the two inhibition tasks. Two questionnaires on impulsive traits were completed. Differences between the two tasks are shown by distinct activation patterns within the prefrontal cortex. The nogo task resulted mainly in the activation of the dorsolateral prefrontal cortex (dlPFC), whereas successful and unsuccessful inhibition in the stop-signal task elicited the predicted activity in the inferior frontal cortex (IFC). Although significant differences were found in neither the scores obtained on impulsivity-related questionnaires nor the behavioral data, the LL group displayed increased dlPFC activity during nogo trials and the predicted activation in the IFC during successful inhibition in the stop-signal task, while no significant activation was found in the SS group. Our data confirm an influence of NOS1 ex1f-VNTR on impulsivity, as carriers of the short risk allele exhibited diminished activity of (pre-)frontal brain regions during the inhibition in a stop-signal task. Impairment of prefrontal control with consecutive failure of inhibitory processes might underlie association findings reported previously.

  1. Dual-task performance with ideomotor-compatible tasks: is the central processing bottleneck intact, bypassed, or shifted in locus?

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Lien, Mei-Ching; McCann, Robert S.; Ruthruff, Eric; Proctor, Robert W.

    2005-01-01

    The present study examined whether the central bottleneck, assumed to be primarily responsible for the psychological refractory period (PRP) effect, is intact, bypassed, or shifted in locus with ideomotor (IM)-compatible tasks. In 4 experiments, factorial combinations of IM- and non-IM-compatible tasks were used for Task 1 and Task 2. All experiments showed substantial PRP effects, with a strong dependency between Task 1 and Task 2 response times. These findings, along with model-based simulations, indicate that the processing bottleneck was not bypassed, even with two IM-compatible tasks. Nevertheless, systematic changes in the PRP and correspondence effects across experiments suggest that IM compatibility shifted the locus of the bottleneck. The findings favor an engage-bottleneck-later hypothesis, whereby parallelism between tasks occurs deeper into the processing stream for IM- than for non-IM-compatible tasks, without the bottleneck being actually eliminated.

  2. Force-velocity Relationship of Muscles Performing Multi-joint Maximum Performance Tasks.

    PubMed

    Jaric, S

    2015-08-01

    Manipulation of external loads typically provides a range of force, velocity, and power data that allows for modeling muscle mechanical characteristics. While a typical force-velocity relationship obtained from either in vitro muscles or isolated muscle groups can be described by a hyperbolic equation, the present review paper reveals the evidence that the same relationship obtained from maximum-performance multi-joint movements could be approximately linear. As a consequence, this pattern also results in a relatively simple shape of the power-velocity relationship. The parameters of the linear force-velocity relationship reveal the maximum force, velocity and power. Recent studies conducted on various functional movement tasks reveal that these parameters could be reliable, on average moderately valid, and typically sensitive enough to detect differences among populations of different physical abilities. Therefore, the linear force-velocity relationship together with the associated parabolic power-velocity relationship could provide both a new and simplified approach to studies of the design and function of human muscular system and its modeling. Regarding the practical applications, the reviewed findings also suggest that the loaded multi-joint movements could be developed into relatively simple routine tests of the force-, velocity- and power-generating capacity of the neuromuscular system.

  3. Glutamate and GABA concentration changes in the globus pallidus internus of Parkinson's patients during performance of implicit and declarative memory tasks: a report of two subjects.

    PubMed

    Buchanan, Robert J; Gjini, Klevest; Darrow, David; Varga, Georgeta; Robinson, Jennifer L; Nadasdy, Zoltan

    2015-03-01

    The basal ganglia, typically associated with motor function, are involved in human cognitive processes, as demonstrated in behavioral, lesion, and noninvasive functional neuroimaging studies. Here we report task-contingent changes in concentrations of the neurotransmitters glutamate (Glu) and gamma-aminobutyric acid (GABA) in the globus pallidus internus (GPi) of two patients with Parkinson's disease undergoing deep brain stimulation surgery by utilizing in-vivo microdialysis measurements during performance of implicit and declarative memory tasks. Performance of an implicit memory task (weather prediction task-WPT) was associated with increased levels of glutamate and GABA in the GPi compared to their concentrations at baseline. On the other hand, performance of a declarative memory task (verbal learning task-VLT) was associated with decreased levels of glutamate and GABA in GPi compared to baseline during the encoding and immediate recall phase with less conclusive results during the delayed recall phase. These results are in line with hypothesized changes in these neurotransmitter levels: an increase of excitatory (Glu) input from subthalamic nucleus (STN) to GPi during implicit memory task performance and a decrease of inhibitory inputs (GABA) from globus pallidus externus (GPe) and striatum to GPi during declarative memory performance. Consistent with our previous report on in-vivo neurotransmitter changes during tasks in STN, these data provide corroborative evidence for the direct involvement of basal ganglia in cognitive functions and complements our model of the functional circuitry of basal ganglia in the healthy and Parkinson's disease affected brain.

  4. Characterization of spatial performance in male and female Long-Evans rats by means of the Morris water task and the ziggurat task.

    PubMed

    Faraji, Jamshid; Metz, Gerlinde A; Sutherland, Robert J

    2010-01-15

    Sex differences are prominent influences on spatial performance. One of the most common tasks to assess sex differences in spatial navigation in rodents is the Morris water task (MWT). In this task rats swim in a pool of water to locate a hidden platform employing the topographical relationships among the distal visual cues, pool wall, and goal location. Some evidence suggests that male rats display superior performance relative to females in the MWT. It is unknown, however, to what extent the sex difference in rats is task-dependent. This study compared the performance of male and female Long-Evans rats in the wet-land MWT versus the dry-land ziggurat task (ZT). The ZT represents a new dry-land task in which rats explore an arena with 16 ziggurat pyramids to locate food rewards. Several behavioural parameters, including latency, path length, path speed, probe trial performance, errors, and the number of returns were used as indices of spatial learning and memory. While males and females did not display significant differences in the traditional measures of spatial navigation within MWT, they displayed a robust sex difference in all measures of the ZT. These results indicate task-specific sex differences in spatial performance. Our findings suggest that males and females may employ different learning strategies in the MWT and ZT and that the latter task provides a more favourable task for assessing sex differences in rats.

  5. Effects of Night Work, Sleep Loss and Time on Task on Simulated Threat Detection Performance

    PubMed Central

    Basner, Mathias; Rubinstein, Joshua; Fomberstein, Kenneth M.; Coble, Matthew C.; Ecker, Adrian; Avinash, Deepa; Dinges, David F.

    2008-01-01

    Study Objectives: To investigate the effects of night work and sleep loss on a simulated luggage screening task (SLST) that mimicked the x-ray system used by airport luggage screeners. Design: We developed more than 5,800 unique simulated x-ray images of luggage organized into 31 stimulus sets of 200 bags each. 25% of each set contained either a gun or a knife with low or high target difficulty. The 200-bag stimuli sets were then run on software that simulates an x-ray screening system (SLST). Signal detection analysis was used to obtain measures of hit rate (HR), false alarm rate (FAR), threat detection accuracy (A′), and response bias (B″D). Setting: Experimental laboratory study Participants: 24 healthy nonprofessional volunteers (13 women, mean age ± SD = 29.9 ± 6.5 years). Interventions: Subjects performed the SLST every 2 h during a 5-day period that included a 35 h period of wakefulness that extended to night work and then another day work period after the night without sleep. Results: Threat detection accuracy A′ decreased significantly (P < 0.001) while FAR increased significantly (P < 0.001) during night work, while both A′ (P = 0.001) and HR decreased (P = 0.008) during day work following sleep loss. There were prominent time-on-task effects on response bias B″D (P = 0.002) and response latency (P = 0.004), but accuracy A′ was unaffected. Both HR and FAR increased significantly with increasing study duration (both P < 0.001), while response latency decreased significantly (P < 0.001). Conclusions: This study provides the first systematic evidence that night work and sleep loss adversely affect the accuracy of detecting complex real world objects among high levels of background clutter. If the results can be replicated in professional screeners and real work environments, fatigue in luggage screening personnel may pose a threat for air traffic safety unless countermeasures for fatigue are deployed. Citation: Basner M; Rubinstein J

  6. The impact of secondary task cognitive processing demand on driving performance.

    PubMed

    Blanco, Myra; Biever, Wayne J; Gallagher, John P; Dingus, Thomas A

    2006-09-01

    Crash causation research has identified inattention as a major source of driver error leading to crashes. The series of experiments presented herein investigate the characteristics of an in-vehicle information system (IVIS) task that could hinder driving performance due to uncertainty buildup and cognitive capture. Three on-road studies were performed that used instrumented passenger and tractor-trailer vehicles to obtain real-world driving performance data. Participants included young, middle-aged, and older passenger vehicle drivers and middle-aged and older commercial vehicle operators. While driving, they were presented with IVIS tasks with various information densities, decision-making elements, presentation formats, and presentation modalities (visual or auditory). The experiments showed that, for both presentation modalities, the presence of multiple decision-making elements in a task had a substantial negative impact on driving performance of both automobile drivers and truck drivers when compared to conventional tasks or tasks with only one decision-making element. The results from these experiments can be used to improve IVIS designs, allowing for potential IVIS task phenomena such as uncertainty buildup and cognitive capture to be avoided.

  7. How leaders self-regulate their task performance: evidence that power promotes diligence, depletion, and disdain.

    PubMed

    DeWall, C Nathan; Baumeister, Roy F; Mead, Nicole L; Vohs, Kathleen D

    2011-01-01

    When leaders perform solitary tasks, do they self-regulate to maximize their effort, or do they reduce effort and conserve their resources? Our model suggests that power motivates self-regulation toward effective performance-unless the task is perceived as unworthy of leaders. Our 1st studies showed that power improves self-regulation and performance, even when resources for self-regulation are low (ego depletion). Additional studies showed that leaders sometimes disdain tasks they deem unworthy, by withholding effort (and therefore performing poorly). Ironically, during ego depletion, leaders skip the appraisal and, therefore, work hard regardless of task suitability, so that depleted leaders sometimes outperform nondepleted ones. Our final studies replicated these patterns with different tasks and even with simple manipulation of framing and perception of the same task (Experiment 5). Experiment 4 also showed that the continued high exertion of leaders when depleted takes a heavy toll, resulting in larger impairments later. The judicious expenditure of self-control resources among powerful people may help them prioritize their efforts to pursue their goals effectively.

  8. Board task performance: An exploration of micro- and macro-level determinants of board effectiveness

    PubMed Central

    Minichilli, Alessandro; Zattoni, Alessandro; Nielsen, Sabina; Huse, Morten

    2012-01-01

    This paper addresses recent calls to narrow the micro–macro gap in management research (Bamberger, 2008), by incorporating a macro-level context variable (country) in exploring micro-level determinants of board effectiveness. Following the integrated model proposed by Forbes and Milliken (1999), we identify three board processes as micro-level determinants of board effectiveness. Specifically, we focus on effort norms, cognitive conflicts and the use of knowledge and skills as determinants of board control and advisory task performance. Further, we consider how two different institutional settings influence board tasks, and how the context moderates the relationship between processes and tasks. Our hypotheses are tested on a survey-based dataset of 535 medium-sized and large industrial firms in Italy and Norway, which are considered to substantially differ along legal and cultural dimensions. The findings show that: (i) Board processes have a larger potential than demographic variables to explain board task performance; (ii) board task performance differs significantly between boards operating in different contexts; and (iii) national context moderates the relationships between board processes and board task performance. Copyright © 2010 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd. PMID:23365485

  9. Performance monitoring following total sleep deprivation: effects of task type and error rate.

    PubMed

    Renn, Ryan P; Cote, Kimberly A

    2013-04-01

    There is a need to understand the neural basis of performance deficits that result from sleep deprivation. Performance monitoring tasks generate response-locked event-related potentials (ERPs), generated from the anterior cingulate cortex (ACC) located in the medial surface of the frontal lobe that reflect error processing. The outcome of previous research on performance monitoring during sleepiness has been mixed. The purpose of this study was to evaluate performance monitoring in a controlled study of experimental sleep deprivation using a traditional Flanker task, and to broaden this examination using a response inhibition task. Forty-nine young adults (24 male) were randomly assigned to a total sleep deprivation or rested control group. The sleep deprivation group was slower on the Flanker task and less accurate on a Go/NoGo task compared to controls. General attentional impairments were evident in stimulus-locked ERPs for the sleep deprived group: P300 was delayed on Flanker trials and smaller to Go-stimuli. Further, N2 was smaller to NoGo stimuli, and the response-locked ERN was smaller on both tasks, reflecting neurocognitive impairment during performance monitoring. In the Flanker task, higher error rate was associated with smaller ERN amplitudes for both groups. Examination of ERN amplitude over time showed that it attenuated in the rested control group as error rate increased, but such habituation was not apparent in the sleep deprived group. Poor performing sleep deprived individuals had a larger Pe response than controls, possibly indicating perseveration of errors. These data provide insight into the neural underpinnings of performance failure during sleepiness and have implications for workplace and driving safety.

  10. Study of how sash movement affects performance of fume hoods

    SciTech Connect

    Hardwick, T.

    1997-12-31

    This study was conducted to determine how sash movements affect the performance of fume hoods. The performance of two fume hoods was studied as the sashes were moved from closed to open position at speeds of 2 ft/s, 1.5 ft/s, and 1 ft/s. The tests were conducted with fume hoods operated at both constant volume and variable air volume. The tests indicate that sash movements can disturb airflow patterns at the face of the hood and potentially affect the performance of the hood. The effect of the sash movement varied with hood type and speed of sash movement. The faster sash movements of 2 ft/s and 1.5 ft/s had a greater effect on the performance of the hoods than the slower movement of 1 ft/s. Constant-volume hoods and variable-air-volume hoods were both affected by sash movements. Constant-volume hoods set to a full open face velocity of 60 ft/min were more susceptible to the sash movement than at 100 ft/min full open face velocity. The performance of variable-air-volume hoods is affected not only by sash movement speed but also by the response time of the controller. The drop in face velocity that occurs when the sash is moved is determined by the speed of the VAV controller. The required response time for containment depends on the fume hood design and the speed of the sash movement.

  11. Is soccer kick performance better after a "faking" (cutting) maneuver task?

    PubMed

    Katis, Athanasios; Kellis, Eleftherios

    2011-03-01

    Cutting in soccer is a common skill used to avoid the opponent's pressure but the potential effects of such a skill on instep kicking performance have not been previously investigated. The purpose of this study was to examine the differences in lower limb biomechanics between straight approach soccer kicks and kicks performed following a cutting maneuver task. Ten young amateur soccer players performed, in a random order, instep kicks after a two-step straight approach run and kicks after a double "faking" cutting maneuver task. The results showed that kicking after a cutting maneuver task displayed significantly lower ball speed values compared with the straight approach instep kicking (16.73 vs. 19.78 m/s, respectively; p < 0.05). Moreover, analysis of variance showed significant differences between the two kicking conditions in ankle, knee and hip joint displacements. The present study indicated that performing instep kicks after a double-cutting maneuver reduces ball and foot speed probably due to increasing joint frontal and transverse plane rotations. Improvements in the performance of the cutting maneuver task through training might result in better transfer of energy and speed to the kicking task thus permitting players to perform more powerful kicks under realistic game conditions. PMID:21560750

  12. Operator performance and localized muscle fatigue in a simulated space vehicle control task

    NASA Technical Reports Server (NTRS)

    Lewis, J. L., Jr.

    1979-01-01

    Fourier transforms in a special purpose computer were utilized to obtain power spectral density functions from electromyograms of the biceps brachii, triceps brachii, brachioradialis, flexor carpi ulnaris, brachialis, and pronator teres in eight subjects performing isometric tracking tasks in two directions utilizing a prototype spacecraft rotational hand controller. Analysis of these spectra in general purpose computers aided in defining muscles involved in performing the task, and yielded a derived measure potentially useful in predicting task termination. The triceps was the only muscle to show significant differences in all possible tests for simple effects in both tasks and, overall, was the most consistently involved of the six muscles. The total power monitored for triceps, biceps, and brachialis dropped to minimal levels across all subjects earlier than for other muscles. However, smaller variances existed for the biceps, brachioradialis, brachialis, and flexor carpi ulnaris muscles and could provide longer predictive times due to smaller standard deviations for a greater population range.

  13. Relations among Epistemological Beliefs, Academic Achievement, and Task Performance in Secondary School Students

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Lodewyk, Ken R.

    2007-01-01

    Students with differing profiles of epistemological beliefs--their beliefs about personal epistemology, intelligence, and learning--vary in thinking, reasoning, motivation, and use of strategies while working on academic tasks, each of which affect learning. This study examined students' epistemological beliefs according to gender, school…

  14. Age-Related Effects of Study Time Allocation on Memory Performance in a Verbal and a Spatial Task

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Krueger, Lacy E.

    2012-01-01

    Past studies have suggested that study time allocation partially mediates age relations on memory performance in a verbal task. To identify whether this applied to a different material modality, participants ages 20-87 completed a spatial task in addition to a traditional verbal task. In both the verbal and the spatial task, increased age was…

  15. Comparing the predictive value of multiple cognitive, affective, and motor tasks after rodent traumatic brain injury.

    PubMed

    Zhao, Zaorui; Loane, David J; Murray, Michael G; Stoica, Bogdan A; Faden, Alan I

    2012-10-10

    Controlled cortical impact injury (CCI) is a widely-used, clinically-relevant model of traumatic brain injury (TBI). Although functional outcomes have been used for years in this model, little work has been done to compare the predictive value of various cognitive and sensorimotor assessment tests, singly or in combination. Such information would be particularly useful for assessing mechanisms of injury or therapeutic interventions. Following isoflurane anesthesia, C57BL/6 mice were subjected to sham, mild (5.0 m/sec), moderate (6.0 m/sec), or severe (7.5 m/sec) CCI. A battery of behavioral tests were evaluated and compared, including the standard Morris water maze (sMWM), reversal Morris water maze (rMWM), novel object recognition (NOR), passive avoidance (PA), tail-suspension (TS), beam walk (BW), and open-field locomotor activity. The BW task, performed at post-injury days (PID) 0, 1, 3, 7, 14, 21, and 28, showed good discrimination as a function of injury severity. The sMWM and rMWM tests (PID 14-23), as well as NOR (PID 24 and 25), effectively discriminated spatial and novel object learning and memory across injury severity levels. Notably, the rMWM showed the greatest separation between mild and moderate/severe injury. PA (PID 27 and 28) and TS (PID 24) also reflected differences across injury levels, but to a lesser degree. We also compared individual functional measures with histological outcomes such as lesion volume and neuronal cell loss across anatomical regions. In addition, we created a novel composite behavioral score index from individual complementary behavioral scores, and it provided superior discrimination across injury severities compared to individual tests. In summary, this study demonstrates the feasibility of using a larger number of complementary functional outcome behavioral tests than those traditionally employed to follow post-traumatic recovery after TBI, and suggests that the composite score may be a helpful tool for screening

  16. Comparing the predictive value of multiple cognitive, affective, and motor tasks after rodent traumatic brain injury.

    PubMed

    Zhao, Zaorui; Loane, David J; Murray, Michael G; Stoica, Bogdan A; Faden, Alan I

    2012-10-10

    Controlled cortical impact injury (CCI) is a widely-used, clinically-relevant model of traumatic brain injury (TBI). Although functional outcomes have been used for years in this model, little work has been done to compare the predictive value of various cognitive and sensorimotor assessment tests, singly or in combination. Such information would be particularly useful for assessing mechanisms of injury or therapeutic interventions. Following isoflurane anesthesia, C57BL/6 mice were subjected to sham, mild (5.0 m/sec), moderate (6.0 m/sec), or severe (7.5 m/sec) CCI. A battery of behavioral tests were evaluated and compared, including the standard Morris water maze (sMWM), reversal Morris water maze (rMWM), novel object recognition (NOR), passive avoidance (PA), tail-suspension (TS), beam walk (BW), and open-field locomotor activity. The BW task, performed at post-injury days (PID) 0, 1, 3, 7, 14, 21, and 28, showed good discrimination as a function of injury severity. The sMWM and rMWM tests (PID 14-23), as well as NOR (PID 24 and 25), effectively discriminated spatial and novel object learning and memory across injury severity levels. Notably, the rMWM showed the greatest separation between mild and moderate/severe injury. PA (PID 27 and 28) and TS (PID 24) also reflected differences across injury levels, but to a lesser degree. We also compared individual functional measures with histological outcomes such as lesion volume and neuronal cell loss across anatomical regions. In addition, we created a novel composite behavioral score index from individual complementary behavioral scores, and it provided superior discrimination across injury severities compared to individual tests. In summary, this study demonstrates the feasibility of using a larger number of complementary functional outcome behavioral tests than those traditionally employed to follow post-traumatic recovery after TBI, and suggests that the composite score may be a helpful tool for screening

  17. Effects of aging and tactile stochastic resonance on postural performance and postural control in a sensory conflict task.

    PubMed

    Dettmer, Marius; Pourmoghaddam, Amir; Lee, Beom-Chan; Layne, Charles S

    2015-01-01

    Postural control in certain situations depends on functioning of tactile or proprioceptive receptors and their respective dynamic integration. Loss of sensory functioning can lead to increased risk of falls in challenging postural tasks, especially in older adults. Stochastic resonance, a concept describing better function of systems with addition of optimal levels of noise, has shown to be beneficial for balance performance in certain populations and simple postural tasks. In this study, we tested the effects of aging and a tactile stochastic resonance stimulus (TSRS) on balance of adults in a sensory conflict task. Nineteen older (71-84 years of age) and younger participants (22-29 years of age) stood on a force plate for repeated trials of 20 s duration, while foot sole stimulation was either turned on or off, and the visual surrounding was sway-referenced. Balance performance was evaluated by computing an Equilibrium Score (ES) and anterior-posterior sway path length (APPlength). For postural control evaluation, strategy scores and approximate entropy (ApEn) were computed. Repeated-measures ANOVA, Wilcoxon signed-rank tests, and Mann-Whitney U-tests were conducted for statistical analysis. Our results showed that balance performance differed between older and younger adults as indicated by ES (p = 0.01) and APPlength (0.01), and addition of vibration only improved performance in the older group significantly (p = 0.012). Strategy scores differed between both age groups, whereas vibration only affected the older group (p = 0.025). Our results indicate that aging affects specific postural outcomes and that TSRS is beneficial for older adults in a visual sensory conflict task, but more research is needed to investigate the effectiveness in individuals with more severe balance problems, for example, due to neuropathy. PMID:25884289

  18. The cortisol awakening response is associated with performance of a serial sequence reaction time task.

    PubMed

    Hodyl, Nicolette A; Schneider, Luke; Vallence, Ann-Maree; Clow, Angela; Ridding, Michael C; Pitcher, Julia B

    2016-02-01

    There is emerging evidence of a relationship between the cortisol awakening response (CAR) and the neural mechanisms underlying learning and memory. The aim of this study was to determine whether the CAR is associated with acquisition, retention and overnight consolidation or improvement of a serial sequence reaction time task. Salivary samples were collected at 0, 15, 30 and 45 min after awakening in 39 healthy adults on 2 consecutive days. The serial sequence reaction time task was repeated each afternoon. Participants completed the perceived stress scale and provided salivary samples prior to testing for cortisol assessment. While the magnitude of the CAR (Z score) was not associated with either baseline performance or the timed improvement during task acquisition of the serial sequence task, a positive correlation was observed with reaction times during the stable performance phase on day 1 (r=0.373, p=0.019). Residuals derived from the relationship between baseline and stable phase reaction times on day 1 were used as a surrogate for the degree of learning: these residuals were also correlated with the CAR mean increase on day 1 (r=0.357, p=0.048). Task performance on day 2 was not associated with the CAR obtained on this same day. No association was observed between the perceived stress score, cortisol at testing or task performance. These data indicate that a smaller CAR in healthy adults is associated with a greater degree of learning and faster performance of a serial sequence reaction time task. These results support recognition of the CAR as an important factor contributing to cognitive performance throughout the day.

  19. Achievement goals, task performance, and interest: why perceived goal difficulty matters.

    PubMed

    Senko, Corwin; Harackiewicz, Judith M

    2005-12-01

    In field studies, mastery goals, which focus on developing skill, often predict task interest but not actual performance. Performance-approach goals, which focus on outperforming others, instead often predict strong performance but not interest. Two experiments tested the hypothesis that these distinct goal effects trace to goal difficulty perceptions. In each study, participants assigned to a performance-approach goal perceived their goal to be harder, and therefore felt more performance pressure, than those assigned to a mastery goal. Among participants low in dispositional achievement orientation, this experience translated into lower task interest when pursuing the performance-approach goal. However, participants in both studies also performed the activity better when pursuing this goal instead of a standard mastery goal, although this was not mediated by self-reported goal difficulty perceptions. Finally, further demonstrating the role of goal difficulty, a mastery goal manipulated to appear more difficult than a standard mastery goal produced effects matching the performance-approach goal.

  20. Non-image forming effects of illuminance level: Exploring parallel effects on physiological arousal and task performance.

    PubMed

    Huiberts, Laura M; Smolders, Karin C H J; de Kort, Yvonne A W

    2016-10-01

    This study investigated diurnal non-image forming (NIF) effects of illuminance level on physiological arousal in parallel to NIF effects on vigilance and working memory performance. We employed a counterbalanced within-subjects design in which thirty-nine participants (mean age=21.2; SD=2.1; 11 male) completed three 90-min sessions (165 vs. 600lx vs. 1700lx at eye level) either in the morning (N=18) or afternoon (N=21). During each session, participants completed four measurement blocks (incl. one baseline block) each consisting of a 10-min Psychomotor Vigilance Task (PVT) and a Backwards Digit-Span Task (BDST) including easy trials (4-6 digits) and difficult trials (7-8 digits). Heart rate (HR), skin conductance level (SCL) and systolic blood pressure (SBP) were measured continuously. The results revealed significant improvements in performance on the BDST difficult trials under 1700lx vs. 165lx (p=0.01), while illuminance level did not affect performance on the PVT and BDST easy trials. Illuminance level impacted HR and SCL, but not SBP. In the afternoon sessions, HR was significantly higher under 1700lx vs. 165lx during PVT performance (p=0.05), while during BDST performance, HR was only slightly higher under 600 vs. 165lx (p=0.06). SCL was significantly higher under 1700lx vs. 165lx during performance on BDST easy trials (p=0.02) and showed similar, but nonsignificant trends during the PVT and BDST difficult trials. Although both physiology and performance were affected by illuminance level, no consistent pattern emerged with respect to parallel changes in physiology and performance. Rather, physiology and performance seemed to be affected independently, via unique pathways. PMID:27221368