WorldWideScience

Sample records for cognitively demanding tasks

  1. Cognitive and collaborative demands of freight conductor activities: results and implications of a cognitive task analysis

    Science.gov (United States)

    2012-07-31

    This report presents the results of a cognitive task analysis (CTA) that examined the cognitive and collaborative demands placed on conductors, as well as the knowledge and skills that experienced conductors have developed that enable them to operate...

  2. Cognitive task demands, self-control demands and the mental well-being of office workers.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bridger, Robert S; Brasher, Kate

    2011-09-01

    The cognitive task demands of office workers and the self-control demands of their work roles were measured in a sample of 196 employees in two different office layouts using a self-report questionnaire, which was circulated electronically. Multiple linear regression analysis revealed that both factors were associated with mental well-being, but not with physical well-being, while controlling for exposure to psychosocial stressors. The interaction between cognitive task demands and self-control demands had the strongest association with mental well-being, suggesting that the deleterious effect of one was greater when the other was present. An exploratory analysis revealed that the association was stronger for employees working in a large open-plan office than for those working in smaller offices with more privacy. Frustration of work goals was the cognitive task demand having the strongest negative impact on mental well-being. Methodological limitations and scale psychometrics (particularly the use of the NASA Task Load Index) are discussed. STATEMENT OF RELEVANCE: Modern office work has high mental demands and low physical demands and there is a need to design offices to prevent adverse psychological reactions. It is shown that cognitive task demands interact with self-control demands to degrade mental well-being. The association was stronger in an open-plan office.

  3. Effects of Cognitive Demand on Situational Interest and Running Task Performances

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhu, Xihe; Chen, Senlin

    2017-01-01

    This study examined the effect of cognitive demand on situational interest and performance using running tasks in physical education. Adolescents (N = 179) participated in a field study involving three different levels of cognitive demand. Running performances and situational interest were measured four times with a testing interval of seven days.…

  4. Measuring cognitive task demands using dual task methodology, subjective self-ratings, and expert judgments : A Validation Study

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Révész, Andrea; Michel, Marije; Gilabert, Roger

    2016-01-01

    This study explored the usefulness of dual-task methodology, self-ratings, and expert judgements in assessing task-generated cognitive demands as a way to provide validity evidence for manipulations of task complexity. The participants were 96 students and 61 ESL teachers. The students, 48 English

  5. Measuring Cognitive Task Demands Using Dual-Task Methodology, Subjective Self-Ratings, and Expert Judgments: A Validation Study

    Science.gov (United States)

    Revesz, Andrea; Michel, Marije; Gilabert, Roger

    2016-01-01

    This study explored the usefulness of dual-task methodology, self-ratings, and expert judgments in assessing task-generated cognitive demands as a way to provide validity evidence for manipulations of task complexity. The participants were 96 students and 61 English as a second language (ESL) teachers. The students, 48 English native speakers and…

  6. Heart rate variability and cognitive processing: The autonomic response to task demands.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Luque-Casado, Antonio; Perales, José C; Cárdenas, David; Sanabria, Daniel

    2016-01-01

    This study investigated variations in heart rate variability (HRV) as a function of cognitive demands. Participants completed an execution condition including the psychomotor vigilance task, a working memory task and a duration discrimination task. The control condition consisted of oddball versions (participants had to detect the rare event) of the tasks from the execution condition, designed to control for the effect of the task parameters (stimulus duration and stimulus rate) on HRV. The NASA-TLX questionnaire was used as a subjective measure of cognitive workload across tasks and conditions. Three major findings emerged from this study. First, HRV varied as a function of task demands (with the lowest values in the working memory task). Second, and crucially, we found similar HRV values when comparing each of the tasks with its oddball control equivalent, and a significant decrement in HRV as a function of time-on-task. Finally, the NASA-TLX results showed larger cognitive workload in the execution condition than in the oddball control condition, and scores variations as a function of task. Taken together, our results suggest that HRV is highly sensitive to overall demands of sustained attention over and above the influence of other cognitive processes suggested by previous literature. In addition, our study highlights a potential dissociation between objective and subjective measures of mental workload, with important implications in applied settings. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  7. Planning and Enacting Mathematical Tasks of High Cognitive Demand in the Primary Classroom

    Science.gov (United States)

    Georgius, Kelly

    2013-01-01

    This study offers an examination of two primary-grades teachers as they learn to transfer knowledge from professional development into their classrooms. I engaged in planning sessions with each teacher to help plan tasks of high cognitive demand, including anticipating and planning for classroom discourse that would occur around the task. A…

  8. Cognitive Demands Influence Lower Extremity Mechanics During a Drop Vertical Jump Task in Female Athletes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Almonroeder, Thomas Gus; Kernozek, Thomas; Cobb, Stephen; Slavens, Brooke; Wang, Jinsung; Huddleston, Wendy

    2018-05-01

    Study Design Cross-sectional study. Background The drop vertical jump task is commonly used to screen for anterior cruciate ligament injury risk; however, its predictive validity is limited. The limited predictive validity of the drop vertical jump task may be due to not imposing the cognitive demands that reflect sports participation. Objectives To investigate the influence of additional cognitive demands on lower extremity mechanics during execution of the drop vertical jump task. Methods Twenty uninjured women (age range, 18-25 years) were required to perform the standard drop vertical jump task, as well as drop vertical jumps that included additional cognitive demands. The additional cognitive demands were related to attending to an overhead goal (ball suspended overhead) and/or temporal constraints on movement selection (decision making). Three-dimensional ground reaction forces and lower extremity mechanics were compared between conditions. Results The inclusion of the overhead goal resulted in higher peak vertical ground reaction forces and lower peak knee flexion angles in comparison to the standard drop vertical jump task. In addition, participants demonstrated greater peak knee abduction angles when trials incorporated temporal constraints on decision making and/or required participants to attend to an overhead goal, in comparison to the standard drop vertical jump task. Conclusion Imposing additional cognitive demands during execution of the drop vertical jump task influenced lower extremity mechanics in a manner that suggested increased loading of the anterior cruciate ligament. Tasks utilized in anterior cruciate ligament injury risk screening may benefit from more closely reflecting the cognitive demands of the sports environment. J Orthop Sports Phys Ther 2018;48(5):381-387. Epub 10 Jan 2018. doi:10.2519/jospt.2018.7739.

  9. Stress reactions to cognitively demanding tasks and open-plan office noise

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Kristiansen, Jesper; Mathiesen, Line; Nielsen, Pernille Kofoed

    2009-01-01

    measured. RESULTS: Cognitively demanding work tasks were associated with changes in HRV, systolic blood pressure and EMG that reflects increased sympathetic activity in the autonomic nervous system. No effect of noise was observed, except for a higher rating of perceived exertion in the head and, contrary......OBJECTIVES: To investigate the effects of cognitively demanding work tasks and office noise on heart rate variability (HRV), cardiovascular responses and electromyography (EMG) activity in the trapezius muscles. METHODS: Ten female volunteers were exposed to simulated open-plan office noise for 35...

  10. Brain biomarkers based assessment of cognitive workload in pilots under various task demands.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gentili, Rodolphe J; Rietschel, Jeremy C; Jaquess, Kyle J; Lo, Li-Chuan; Prevost, Michael; Miller, Matt W; Mohler, Jessica M; Oh, Hyuk; Tan, Ying Ying; Hatfield, Bradley D

    2014-01-01

    Cognitive workload is an important element of cognitive-motor performance such as that exhibited during the piloting of an aircraft. Namely, an increase in task demands on the pilot can elevate cognitive information processing and, thus, the risk of human error. As such, there is a need to develop methods that reliably assess mental workload in pilots within operational settings. The present study contributes to this research goal by identifying physiological and brain biomarkers of cognitive workload and attentional reserve during a simulated aircraft piloting task under three progressive levels of challenge. A newly developed experimental method was employed by which electroencephalography (EEG) was acquired via a dry (i.e., gel-free sensors) system using few scalp sites. Self-reported responses to surveys and piloting performance indicators were analyzed. The findings revealed that as the challenge (task demands) increased, the perceived mental load increased, attentional reserve was attenuated, and task performance decreased. Such an increase in task demands was also reflected by changes in heart rate variability (HRV), as well as in the amplitude of the P300 component of event-related potentials to auditory probes, and in the spectral power of specific EEG frequency bands. This work provides a first step towards a long-term goal to develop a composite system of biomarkers for real-time cognitive workload assessment and state assessment of pilots in operational settings.

  11. Professional development in statistics, technology, and cognitively demanding tasks: classroom implementation and obstacles

    Science.gov (United States)

    Foley, Gregory D.; Bakr Khoshaim, Heba; Alsaeed, Maha; Nihan Er, S.

    2012-03-01

    Attending professional development programmes can support teachers in applying new strategies for teaching mathematics and statistics. This study investigated (a) the extent to which the participants in a professional development programme subsequently used the techniques they had learned when teaching mathematics and statistics and (b) the obstacles they encountered in enacting cognitively demanding instructional tasks in their classrooms. The programme created an intellectual learning community among the participants and helped them gain confidence as teachers of statistics, and the students of participating teachers became actively engaged in deep mathematical thinking. The participants indicated, however, that time, availability of resources and students' prior achievement critically affected the implementation of cognitively demanding instructional activities.

  12. Balancing the Demands of Two Tasks: An Investigation of Cognitive-Motor Dual-Tasking in Relapsing Remitting Multiple Sclerosis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Butchard-MacDonald, Emma; Paul, Lorna; Evans, Jonathan J

    2018-03-01

    People with relapsing remitting multiple sclerosis (PwRRMS) suffer disproportionate decrements in gait under dual-task conditions, when walking and a cognitive task are combined. There has been much less investigation of the impact of cognitive demands on balance. This study investigated whether: (1) PwRRMS show disproportionate decrements in postural stability under dual-task conditions compared to healthy controls, and (2) dual-task decrements are associated with everyday dual-tasking difficulties. The impact of mood, fatigue, and disease severity on dual-tasking was also examined. A total of 34 PwRRMS and 34 matched controls completed cognitive (digit span) and balance (movement of center of pressure on Biosway on stable and unstable surfaces) tasks under single- and dual-task conditions. Everyday dual-tasking was measured using the Dual-Tasking Questionnaire. Mood was measured by the Hospital Anxiety & Depression Scale. Fatigue was measured via the Modified Fatigue Index Scale. No differences in age, gender, years of education, estimated pre-morbid IQ, or baseline digit span between groups. Compared with controls, PwRRMS showed significantly greater decrement in postural stability under dual-task conditions on an unstable surface (p=.007), but not a stable surface (p=.679). Balance decrement scores were not correlated with everyday dual-tasking difficulties or fatigue. Stable surface balance decrement scores were significantly associated with levels of anxiety (rho=0.527; p=.001) and depression (rho=0.451; p=.007). RRMS causes dual-tasking difficulties, impacting balance under challenging conditions, which may contribute to increased risk of gait difficulties and falls. The relationship between anxiety/depression and dual-task decrement suggests that emotional factors may be contributing to dual-task difficulties. (JINS, 2018, 24, 247-258).

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    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.

  14. Blocking-out auditory distracters while driving : A cognitive strategy to reduce task-demands on the road

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Unal, Ayca Berfu; Platteel, Samantha; Steg, Linda; Epstude, Kai

    The current research examined how drivers handle task-demands induced by listening to the radio while driving. In particular, we explored the traces of a possible cognitive strategy that might be used by drivers to cope with task-demands, namely blocking-out auditory distracters. In Study 1 (N =

  15. Investigating the Effects of Concurrent Performance of Physical and Cognitive Demanding Task in Paced Assembly Lines

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Shakil Ahmed Shaikh

    2013-07-01

    Full Text Available The study was undertaken to investigate the effects of pacing on aspects of performance at an assembly task and on the operators' responses related to work behaviour, perceived workload and perceived stress. A particular objective of the study was to investigate whether physical and cognitive demands may interact in their influences on these effects. An assembly task was simulated in the laboratory and the level of pacing imposed, work height and memory load within the task were all varied. The results showed that the type of pacing commonly imposed (as is common with a lean manufacturing Takt time system in industry can significantly affect both performance and perceived workload and stress. Physical demands (through work height affecting posture and mental demand (through memory load were also found to have significant effects, as would be expected from the many studies of these in the literature. More importantly, some interactions were found between pacing and work height in their effects on quality of assembly and the operator's own rating of performance, and between work height and memory load in their effects on errors. These findings will need to be taken into account by companies when implementing Takt time systems.

  16. Cognitive demand of human sensorimotor performance during an extended space mission: a dual-task study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bock, Otmar; Weigelt, Cornelia; Bloomberg, Jacob J

    2010-09-01

    Two previous single-case studies found that the dual-task costs of manual tracking plus memory search increased during a space mission, and concluded that sensorimotor deficits during spaceflight may be related to cognitive overload. Since dual-task costs were insensitive to the difficulty of memory search, the authors argued that the overload may reflect stress-related problems of multitasking, rather than a scarcity of specific cognitive resources. Here we expand the available database and compare different types of concurrent task. Three subjects were repeatedly tested before, during, and after an extended mission on the International Space Station (ISS). They performed an unstable tracking task and four reaction-time tasks, both separately and concurrently. Inflight data could only be obtained during later parts of the mission. The tracking error increased from pre- to in flight by a factor of about 2, both under single- and dual-task conditions. The dual-task costs with a reaction-time task requiring rhythm production was 2.4 times higher than with a reaction-time task requiring visuo-spatial transformations, and 8 times higher than with a regular choice reaction-time task. Long-term sensorimotor deficits during spaceflight may reflect not only stress, but also a scarcity of resources related to complex motor programming; possibly those resources are tied up by sensorimotor adaptation to the space environment.

  17. Task demand, task management, and teamwork

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Braarud, Per Oeivind; Brendryen, Haavar

    2001-03-15

    The current approach to mental workload assessment in process control was evaluated in 3 previous HAMMLAB studies, by analysing the relationship between workload related measures and performance. The results showed that subjective task complexity rating was related to team's control room performance, that mental effort (NASA-TLX) was weakly related to performance, and that overall activity level was unrelated to performance. The results support the argument that general cognitive measures, i.e., mental workload, are weakly related to performance in the process control domain. This implies that other workload concepts than general mental workload are needed for valid assessment of human reliability and for valid assessment of control room configurations. An assessment of task load in process control suggested that how effort is used to handle task demand is more important then the level of effort invested to solve the task. The report suggests two main workload related concepts with a potential as performance predictors in process control: task requirements, and the work style describing how effort is invested to solve the task. The task requirements are seen as composed of individual task demand and team demand. In a similar way work style are seen as composed of individual task management and teamwork style. A framework for the development of the concepts is suggested based on a literature review and experiences from HAMMLAB research. It is suggested that operational definitions of workload concepts should be based on observable control room behaviour, to assure a potential for developing performance-shaping factors. Finally an explorative analysis of teamwork measures and performance in one study indicated that teamwork concepts are related to performance. This lends support to the suggested development of team demand and teamwork style as elements of a framework for the analysis of workload in process control. (Author)

  18. What Do We Really Know about Cognitive Inhibition? Task Demands and Inhibitory Effects across a Range of Memory and Behavioural Tasks.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Saima Noreen

    Full Text Available Our study explores inhibitory control across a range of widely recognised memory and behavioural tasks. Eighty-seven never-depressed participants completed a series of tasks designed to measure inhibitory control in memory and behaviour. Specifically, a variant of the selective retrieval-practice and the Think/No-Think tasks were employed as measures of memory inhibition. The Stroop-Colour Naming and the Go/No-Go tasks were used as measures of behavioural inhibition. Participants completed all 4 tasks. Task presentation order was counterbalanced across 3 separate testing sessions for each participant. Standard inhibitory forgetting effects emerged on both memory tasks but the extent of forgetting across these tasks was not correlated. Furthermore, there was no relationship between memory inhibition tasks and either of the main behavioural inhibition measures. At a time when cognitive inhibition continues to gain acceptance as an explanatory mechanism, our study raises fundamental questions about what we actually know about inhibition and how it is affected by the processing demands of particular inhibitory tasks.

  19. Nicotine intake and problem solving strategies are modified during a cognitively demanding water maze task in rats.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nesil, Tanseli; Kanit, Lutfiye; Pogun, Sakire

    2015-11-01

    Nicotine is the major addictive component in tobacco, and despite well-established adverse health effects of tobacco addiction, some smokers have difficulty quitting. The acute cognitive enhancement and/or the amelioration of the cognitive disruption during withdrawal that some smokers experience after smoking are among important factors that hinder quit attempts. The animal model presented in the current study is comparable to the human smoking condition although nicotine intake routes are different. Rats were exposed to a free choice of oral nicotine starting at adolescence, and given a water maze (WM) task as adults. This design allowed us to see if rats alter their nicotine intake during the WM task and if nicotine preference and intake modify abilities and strategies rats use for problem solving. Male and female rats were exposed to a free choice of oral nicotine/water for 24weeks, starting at five weeks of age. After this period, they were selected based on their nicotine intake and, together with control animals that received only water, were subjected to a place-learning task in the WM. Free-choice nicotine exposure continued during WM testing. Following acquisition, the probe trial presented the rats with a choice between using two different strategies for problem solving. Nicotine supported acquisition and rats increased their nicotine intake during WM testing; this effect was more pronounced in male rats with minimum nicotine preference and intake. Furthermore, nicotine modified the "female type" strategy in solving the place-learning task and nicotine treated female rats, unlike control females, behaved like males. The increase in nicotine intake during mental engagement, and the sexually dimorphic effect of nicotine on problem solving strategies that we have observed in rats, may suggest that implementing sex-specific smoking cessation approaches, especially under stressful and cognitively demanding conditions, may be useful in helping smokers quit

  20. Cognitive task analysis

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Schraagen, J.M.C.

    2000-01-01

    Cognitive task analysis is defined as the extension of traditional task analysis techniques to yield information about the knowledge, thought processes and goal structures that underlie observable task performance. Cognitive task analyses are conducted for a wide variety of purposes, including the

  1. Effects of Panax ginseng, consumed with and without glucose, on blood glucose levels and cognitive performance during sustained 'mentally demanding' tasks.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Reay, Jonathon L; Kennedy, David O; Scholey, Andrew B

    2006-11-01

    Single doses of the traditional herbal treatment Panax ginseng have recently been shown to lower blood glucose levels and elicit cognitive improvements in healthy, overnight-fasted volunteers. The specific mechanisms responsible for these effects are not known. However, cognitive improvements may be related to the glycaemic properties of Panax ginseng. Using a double-blind, placebo-controlled, balanced-crossover design, 27 healthy young adults completed a 10 minute "cognitive demand" test battery at baseline. They then consumed capsules containing either ginseng (extract G115) or a placebo and 30 minutes later a drink containing glucose or placebo. A further 30 minutes later (i.e. 60 minutes post-baseline/capsules) they completed the "cognitive demand" battery six times in immediate succession. Depending on the condition to which the participant was allocated on that particular day, the combination of capsules/drink treatments corresponded to a dose of: 0mg G115/0 mg glucose (placebo); 200mg G115/0 mg glucose (ginseng); 0 mg G115/25 g glucose (glucose) or 200 mg G115/25 g glucose (ginseng/glucose combination). The 10 minute "cognitive demand" battery comprised a Serial Threes subtraction task (2 min); a Serial Sevens subtraction task (2 min); a Rapid Visual Information Processing task (5 min); and a "mental fatigue" visual analogue scale. Blood glucose levels were measured prior to the day's treatment, and before and after the post-dose completions of the battery. The results showed that both Panax ginseng and glucose enhanced performance of a mental arithmetic task and ameliorated the increase in subjective feelings of mental fatigue experienced by participants during the later stages of the sustained, cognitively demanding task performance. Accuracy of performing the Rapid Visual Information Processing task (RVIP) was also improved following the glucose load. There was no evidence of a synergistic relationship between Panax ginseng and exogenous glucose ingestion

  2. Cognitive Modeling for Closed-Loop Task Mitigation, Phase I

    Data.gov (United States)

    National Aeronautics and Space Administration — As flightdeck equipment becomes more sophisticated and complex, operations become significantly more cognitively demanding. When tasks demands exceed the operator's...

  3. The Cognitive Demands of Writing

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Torrance, Mark; Jeffery, Gaynor

    1999-01-01

    Writing is a complex activity that places demands on cognitive resources. This volume presents original theory and research exploring the ways in which the sub-components of the writing process (generating and organizing content, producing grammatical sentences, etc.) differ in their cognitive

  4. Changes in Elementary Mathematics Teachers' Understanding of Cognitive Demand: When Adapting, Creating, and Using Mathematical Performance Tasks

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jamieson, Thad Spencer

    2015-01-01

    The use of mathematics performance tasks can provide a window into how a student is applying mathematics to various situations, how they are reasoning mathematically and how they are applying conceptual knowledge through problem solving and critical thinking. The purpose of this study was to investigate, according to the elementary mathematics…

  5. Task Demands in OSCEs Influence Learning Strategies.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lafleur, Alexandre; Laflamme, Jonathan; Leppink, Jimmie; Côté, Luc

    2017-01-01

    Models on pre-assessment learning effects confirmed that task demands stand out among the factors assessors can modify in an assessment to influence learning. However, little is known about which tasks in objective structured clinical examinations (OSCEs) improve students' cognitive and metacognitive processes. Research is needed to support OSCE designs that benefit students' metacognitive strategies when they are studying, reinforcing a hypothesis-driven approach. With that intent, hypothesis-driven physical examination (HDPE) assessments ask students to elicit and interpret findings of the physical exam to reach a diagnosis ("Examine this patient with a painful shoulder to reach a diagnosis"). When studying for HDPE, students will dedicate more time to hypothesis-driven discussions and practice than when studying for a part-task OSCE ("Perform the shoulder exam"). It is expected that the whole-task nature of HDPE will lead to a hypothesis-oriented use of the learning resources, a frequent use of adjustment strategies, and persistence with learning. In a mixed-methods study, 40 medical students were randomly paired and filmed while studying together for two hypothetical OSCE stations. Each 25-min study period began with video cues asking to study for either a part-task OSCE or an HDPE. In a crossover design, sequences were randomized for OSCEs and contents (shoulder or spine). Time-on-task for discussions or practice were categorized as "hypothesis-driven" or "sequence of signs and maneuvers." Content analysis of focus group interviews summarized students' perception of learning resources, adjustment strategies, and persistence with learning. When studying for HDPE, students allocate significantly more time for hypothesis-driven discussions and practice. Students use resources contrasting diagnoses and report persistence with learning. When studying for part-task OSCEs, time-on-task is reversed, spent on rehearsing a sequence of signs and maneuvers. OSCEs with

  6. Quantitative work demands, emotional demands, and cognitive stress symptoms in surgery nurses.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Elfering, Achim; Grebner, Simone; Leitner, Monika; Hirschmüller, Anja; Kubosch, Eva Johanna; Baur, Heiner

    2017-06-01

    In surgery, cognitive stress symptoms, including problems in concentrating, deciding, memorising, and reflecting are risks to patient safety. Recent evidence points to social stressors as antecedents of cognitive stress symptoms in surgery personnel. The current study tests whether cognitive stress symptoms are positively associated with emotional abuse, emotional- and task-related demands and resources in surgery work. Forty-eight surgery nurses from two hospitals filled out the Copenhagen Psychosocial Questionnaire in its German version. Task-related and emotional demands were positively related to cognitive stress symptoms. In a stepwise, multiple, linear regression of cognitive stress symptoms on task-related and emotional demands, emotional abuse and emotional demands were unique predictors (p emotional abuse, emotional demands, and, therefore, communication and cooperation team climate in surgery personnel.

  7. Cognitive Resource Demands of Redirected Walking.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bruder, Gerd; Lubas, Paul; Steinicke, Frank

    2015-04-01

    Redirected walking allows users to walk through a large-scale immersive virtual environment (IVE) while physically remaining in a reasonably small workspace. Therefore, manipulations are applied to virtual camera motions so that the user's self-motion in the virtual world differs from movements in the real world. Previous work found that the human perceptual system tolerates a certain amount of inconsistency between proprioceptive, vestibular and visual sensation in IVEs, and even compensates for slight discrepancies with recalibrated motor commands. Experiments showed that users are not able to detect an inconsistency if their physical path is bent with a radius of at least 22 meters during virtual straightforward movements. If redirected walking is applied in a smaller workspace, manipulations become noticeable, but users are still able to move through a potentially infinitely large virtual world by walking. For this semi-natural form of locomotion, the question arises if such manipulations impose cognitive demands on the user, which may compete with other tasks in IVEs for finite cognitive resources. In this article we present an experiment in which we analyze the mutual influence between redirected walking and verbal as well as spatial working memory tasks using a dual-tasking method. The results show an influence of redirected walking on verbal as well as spatial working memory tasks, and we also found an effect of cognitive tasks on walking behavior. We discuss the implications and provide guidelines for using redirected walking in virtual reality laboratories.

  8. Children's Choice Strategies: The Effects of Age and Task Demands

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bereby-Meyer, Yoella; Assor, Avi; Katz, Idit

    2004-01-01

    Two experiments examined the effect of age and cognitive demands on children's choice strategies. Children aged 8-9 and 12-13 years were asked to choose among either two or four products that differed in several attributes of varying importance to them. Choice tasks were designed to differentiate between the lexicographic and the equal-weighting…

  9. When Age and Culture Interact in an Easy and Yet Cognitively Demanding Task: Older Adults, But Not Younger Adults, Showed the Expected Cultural Differences

    OpenAIRE

    Na, Jinkyung; Huang, Chih-Mao; Park, Denise C.

    2017-01-01

    The interaction between age and culture can have various implications for cognition as age represents the effect of biological processes whereas culture represents the effect of sustaining experiences. Nevertheless, their interaction has rarely been examined. Thus, based on the fact that Asians are more intuitive in reasoning than Americans, we examined how this cultural difference might interact with age. Young and old participants from the US and Singapore performed a categorization task (l...

  10. Impairments of working memory in schizophrenia and bipolar disorder: the effect of history of psychotic symptoms and different aspects of cognitive task demands

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Dorota eFrydecka

    2014-11-01

    Full Text Available Comparisons of cognitive impairments between schizophrenia (SZ and bipolar disorder (BPD have produced mixed results. We applied different working memory (WM measures (Digit Span Forward and Backward, Short-delay and Long-delay CPT-AX, N-back to patients with SZ (n=23, psychotic BPD (n=19 and non-psychotic BPD (n=24, as well as to healthy controls (HC (n=18 in order to compare the level of WM impairments across the groups. With respect to the less demanding WM measures (Digit Span Forward and Backward, Short-delay CPT-AX, there were no between-groups differences in cognitive performance; however, with respect to the more demanding WM measures (Long-delay CPT-AX, N-back, we observed that the groups with psychosis (SZ, psychotic BPD did not differ from one another, but performed poorer than the group without history of psychosis (non-psychotic BPD. The history of psychotic symptoms may influence cognitive performance with respect to WM delay and load effects as measured by Long-delay CPT-AX and N-back tests respectively. We observed a positive correlation of WM performance with antipsychotic treatment and negative correlation with depressive symptoms in BPD and with negative symptoms in SZ subgroup. Our study suggests that WM dysfunctions are more closely related to the history of psychosis than to the diagnostic categories of SZ and BPD described by psychiatric classification systems.

  11. When Age and Culture Interact in an Easy and Yet Cognitively Demanding Task: Older Adults, But Not Younger Adults, Showed the Expected Cultural Differences.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Na, Jinkyung; Huang, Chih-Mao; Park, Denise C

    2017-01-01

    The interaction between age and culture can have various implications for cognition as age represents the effect of biological processes whereas culture represents the effect of sustaining experiences. Nevertheless, their interaction has rarely been examined. Thus, based on the fact that Asians are more intuitive in reasoning than Americans, we examined how this cultural difference might interact with age. Young and old participants from the US and Singapore performed a categorization task (living vs. non-living). To measure their reliance on intuition, we manipulated the typicality of targets (animate vs. inanimate). We showed that (1) RTs for inanimate organisms were slower than RTs for animate organisms (atypicality cost), (2) the cost was particularly large for older adults and (3) an age × culture interaction was observed such that cultural differences in the cost (Singaporeans > Americans) was found only among older participants. Further, we demonstrated that the age effect was associated with cognitive function and the culture effect among older adults was associated with cultural values. Finally, a moderated mediation analysis suggests that cognitive function and cultural values interact with each other in order to jointly influence one's cognition.

  12. When Age and Culture Interact in an Easy and Yet Cognitively Demanding Task: Older Adults, But Not Younger Adults, Showed the Expected Cultural Differences

    Science.gov (United States)

    Na, Jinkyung; Huang, Chih-Mao; Park, Denise C.

    2017-01-01

    The interaction between age and culture can have various implications for cognition as age represents the effect of biological processes whereas culture represents the effect of sustaining experiences. Nevertheless, their interaction has rarely been examined. Thus, based on the fact that Asians are more intuitive in reasoning than Americans, we examined how this cultural difference might interact with age. Young and old participants from the US and Singapore performed a categorization task (living vs. non-living). To measure their reliance on intuition, we manipulated the typicality of targets (animate vs. inanimate). We showed that (1) RTs for inanimate organisms were slower than RTs for animate organisms (atypicality cost), (2) the cost was particularly large for older adults and (3) an age × culture interaction was observed such that cultural differences in the cost (Singaporeans > Americans) was found only among older participants. Further, we demonstrated that the age effect was associated with cognitive function and the culture effect among older adults was associated with cultural values. Finally, a moderated mediation analysis suggests that cognitive function and cultural values interact with each other in order to jointly influence one’s cognition. PMID:28396649

  13. Too easy? The influence of task demands conveyed tacitly on prospective memory

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lourenço, Joana S.; Hill, Johnathan H.; Maylor, Elizabeth A.

    2015-01-01

    Previous research suggests that when intentions are encoded, participants establish an attention allocation policy based on their metacognitive beliefs about how demanding it will be to fulfill the prospective memory (PM) task. We investigated whether tacit PM demands can influence judgments about the cognitive effort required for success, and, as a result, affect ongoing task interference and PM performance. Participants performed a lexical decision task in which a PM task of responding to animal words was embedded. PM demands were tacitly manipulated by presenting participants with either typical or atypical animal exemplars at both instructions and practice (low vs. high tacit demands, respectively). Crucially, objective PM task demands were the same for all participants as PM targets were always atypical animals. Tacit demands affected participants’ attention allocation policies such that task interference was greater for the high than low demands condition. Also, PM performance was reduced in the low relative to the high demands condition. Participants in the low demands condition who succeeded to the first target showed a subsequent increase in task interference, suggesting adjustment to the higher than expected demands. This study demonstrates that tacit information regarding the PM task can affect ongoing task processing as well as harm PM performance when actual demands are higher than expected. Furthermore, in line with the proposal that attention allocation is a dynamic and flexible process, we found evidence that PM task experience can trigger changes in ongoing task interference. PMID:25983687

  14. Cognitive task load analysis : Allocating tasks and designing support

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Neerincx, M.A.

    2003-01-01

    We present a method for Cognitive Task Analysis that guides the early stages of software development, aiming at an optimal cognitive load for operators of process control systems. The method is based on a practical theory of cognitive task load and support. In addition to the classical measure

  15. A cognitive task analysis of the SGTR scenario

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Hollnagel, E.; Edland, A.; Svenson, O.

    1996-04-01

    This report constitutes a contribution to the NKS/RAK-1:3 project on Integrated Sequence Analysis. Following the meeting at Ringhals, the work was proposed to be performed by the following three steps: Task 1. Cognitive Task Analysis of the E-3 procedure. Task 2. Evaluation and revision of task analysis with Ringhals/KSU experts. Task 3. Integration with simulator data. The Cognitive Task Analysis (CTA) of Task 1 uses the Goals-Means Task Analysis (GMTA) method to identify the sequence of tasks and task steps necessary to achieve the goals of the procedure. It is based on material supplied by Ringhals, which describes the E-3 procedure, including the relevant ES and ECA procedures. The analysis further outlines the cognitive demands profile associated with individual task steps as well as with the task as a whole, as an indication of the nominal task load. The outcome of the cognitive task analysis provides a basis for proposing an adequate event tree. This report describes the results from Task 1. The work has included a two-day meeting between the three contributors, as well as the exchange of intermediate results and comments throughout the period. After the initial draft of the report was prepared, an opportunity was given to observe the SGTR scenario in a full-scope training simulator, and to discuss the details with the instructors. This led to several improvements from the initial draft. (EG)

  16. Pupillary Response to Cognitive Demand in Parkinson's Disease: A Pilot Study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kahya, Melike; Moon, Sanghee; Lyons, Kelly E; Pahwa, Rajesh; Akinwuntan, Abiodun E; Devos, Hannes

    2018-01-01

    Previous studies have shown that pupillary response, a physiological measure of cognitive workload, reflects cognitive demand in healthy younger and older adults. However, the relationship between cognitive workload and cognitive demand in Parkinson's disease (PD) remains unclear. The aim of this pilot study was to examine the pupillary response to cognitive demand in a letter-number sequencing (LNS) task between 16 non-demented individuals with PD (age, median (Q1-Q3): 68 (62-72); 10 males) and 10 control participants (age: 63 (59-67); 2 males), matched for age, education, and Montreal Cognitive Assessment (MOCA) scores. A mixed model analysis was employed to investigate cognitive workload changes as a result of incremental cognitive demand for both groups. As expected, no differences were found in cognitive scores on the LNS between groups. Cognitive workload, exemplified by greater pupil dilation, increased with incremental cognitive demand in both groups ( p = 0.003). No significant between-group ( p = 0.23) or interaction effects were found ( p = 0.45). In addition, individuals who achieved to complete the task at higher letter-number (LN) load responded differently to increased cognitive demand compared with those who completed at lower LN load ( p demand in non-demented people with PD and healthy controls. Further research is needed to investigate the pupillary response to incremental cognitive demand of PD patients with dementia compared to non-demented PD and healthy controls. Highlights -Pupillary response reflects cognitive demand in both non-demented people with PD and healthy controls-Although not significant due to insufficient power, non-demented individuals with PD had increased cognitive workload compared to the healthy controls throughout the testing-Pupillary response may be a valid measure of cognitive demand in non-demented individuals with PD-In future, pupillary response might be used to detect cognitive impairment in individuals with PD.

  17. Skills-demands compatibility as a determinant of flow experience in an inductive reasoning task.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schiefele, Ulrich; Raabe, Andreas

    2011-10-01

    The skills-demands fit hypothesis of flow theory was examined. Based on the earlier finding that high demands in a game situation do not reduce the experience of flow, a cognitive task paradigm was used. The effect of skills-demands compatibility on the experience of flow but not of other, similar psychological states (i.e., concentration, negative and positive activation) was also investigated. Participants were 89 undergraduate students who worked on a number of inductive reasoning tasks in four successive trials with or without skills-demands compatibility. The results clearly supported the skills-demands fit hypothesis; concentration and activation were affected only by the tasks' difficulty. Inductive reasoning tasks are a useful tool for the experimental analysis of flow, and skills-demands compatibility is a significant and powerful condition of flow, but not of other, similar psychological states.

  18. Age-related neural correlates of cognitive task performance under increased postural load

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Van Impe, A; Bruijn, S M; Coxon, J P; Wenderoth, N; Sunaert, S; Duysens, J; Swinnen, S P

    2013-01-01

    Behavioral studies suggest that postural control requires increased cognitive control and visuospatial processing with aging. Consequently, performance can decline when concurrently performing a postural and a demanding cognitive task. We aimed to identify the neural substrate underlying this

  19. Cognitive ability and the demand for redistribution.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Johanna Mollerstrom

    Full Text Available Empirical research suggests that the cognitively able are politically more influential than the less able, by being more likely to vote and to assume leadership positions. This study asks whether this pattern matters for public policy by investigating what role a person's cognitive ability plays in determining his preferences for redistribution of income among citizens in society. To answer this question, we use a unique Swedish data set that matches responses to a tailor-made questionnaire to administrative tax records and to military enlistment records for men, with the latter containing a measure of cognitive ability. On a scale of 0 to 100 percent redistribution, a one-standard-deviation increase in cognitive ability reduces the willingness to redistribute by 5 percentage points, or by the same amount as a $35,000 increase in mean annual income. We find support for two channels mediating this economically strong and statistically significant relation. First, higher ability is associated with higher income. Second, ability is positively correlated with the view that economic success is the result of effort, rather than luck. Both these factors are, in turn, related to lower demand for redistribution.

  20. Age and sex differences in steadiness of elbow flexor muscles with imposed cognitive demand

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pereira, Hugo M.; Spears, Vincent C.; Schlinder-Delap, Bonnie; Yoon, Tejin; Nielson, Kristy A.; Hunter, Sandra K.

    2015-01-01

    Purpose These studies determined (1) age and sex-related differences in steadiness of isometric contractions when high cognitive demand was imposed across a range of forces with the elbow flexor muscles (study 1) and, (2) sex differences in steadiness among older adults when low cognitive demand was imposed (study 2). Methods 36 young adults (18–25 years; 18 women) and 30 older adults (60–82 years; 17 women) performed isometric contractions at 5%, 30% and 40% of maximum voluntary contraction (MVC). Study 1 involved a high-cognitive demand session (serial subtractions by 13 during the contraction) and a control session (no mental math). Study 2 (older adults only) involved a low-cognitive demand session (subtracting by 1s). Results Older individuals exhibited greater increases in force fluctuations (coefficient of variation of force, CV) with high cognitive demand than young adults, with the largest age difference at 5% MVC (P = 0.01). Older adults had greater agonist EMG activity with high-cognitive demand and women had greater coactivation than men (Pdemand for the older women but not for the older men (P = 0.03). Conclusion Older adults had reduced steadiness and increased muscle activation when high cognitive demand was imposed while low cognitive demand induced increased force fluctuations in older women but not older men. These findings have implications for daily and work-related tasks that involve cognitive demand performed simultaneously during submaximal isometric contractions in an aging workforce. PMID:25633070

  1. Estimating demand for alternatives to cigarettes with online purchase tasks.

    Science.gov (United States)

    O'Connor, Richard J; June, Kristie M; Bansal-Travers, Maansi; Rousu, Matthew C; Thrasher, James F; Hyland, Andrew; Cummings, K Michael

    2014-01-01

    To explore how advertising affects demand for cigarettes and potential substitutes, including snus, dissolvable tobacco, and medicinal nicotine. A Web-based experiment randomized 1062 smokers to see advertisements for alternative nicotine products or soft drinks, then complete a series of purchase tasks, which were used to estimate demand elasticity, peak consumption, and cross-price elasticity (CPE) for tobacco products. Lower demand elasticity and greater peak consumption were seen for cigarettes compared to all alternative products (p demand. These findings suggest significantly lower demand for alternative nicotine sources among smokers than previously revealed.

  2. The Impact of Task Demands on Fixation-Related Brain Potentials during Guided Search.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Anthony J Ries

    Full Text Available Recording synchronous data from EEG and eye-tracking provides a unique methodological approach for measuring the sensory and cognitive processes of overt visual search. Using this approach we obtained fixation related potentials (FRPs during a guided visual search task specifically focusing on the lambda and P3 components. An outstanding question is whether the lambda and P3 FRP components are influenced by concurrent task demands. We addressed this question by obtaining simultaneous eye-movement and electroencephalographic (EEG measures during a guided visual search task while parametrically modulating working memory load using an auditory N-back task. Participants performed the guided search task alone, while ignoring binaurally presented digits, or while using the auditory information in a 0, 1, or 2-back task. The results showed increased reaction time and decreased accuracy in both the visual search and N-back tasks as a function of auditory load. Moreover, high auditory task demands increased the P3 but not the lambda latency while the amplitude of both lambda and P3 was reduced during high auditory task demands. The results show that both early and late stages of visual processing indexed by FRPs are significantly affected by concurrent task demands imposed by auditory working memory.

  3. The impact of task demand on visual word recognition.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yang, J; Zevin, J

    2014-07-11

    The left occipitotemporal cortex has been found sensitive to the hierarchy of increasingly complex features in visually presented words, from individual letters to bigrams and morphemes. However, whether this sensitivity is a stable property of the brain regions engaged by word recognition is still unclear. To address the issue, the current study investigated whether different task demands modify this sensitivity. Participants viewed real English words and stimuli with hierarchical word-likeness while performing a lexical decision task (i.e., to decide whether each presented stimulus is a real word) and a symbol detection task. General linear model and independent component analysis indicated strong activation in the fronto-parietal and temporal regions during the two tasks. Furthermore, the bilateral inferior frontal gyrus and insula showed significant interaction effects between task demand and stimulus type in the pseudoword condition. The occipitotemporal cortex showed strong main effects for task demand and stimulus type, but no sensitivity to the hierarchical word-likeness was found. These results suggest that different task demands on semantic, phonological and orthographic processes can influence the involvement of the relevant regions during visual word recognition. Copyright © 2014 IBRO. Published by Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  4. Enhancing perceptual and attentional skills requires common demands between the action video games and transfer tasks

    Science.gov (United States)

    Oei, Adam C.; Patterson, Michael D.

    2015-01-01

    Despite increasing evidence that shows action video game play improves perceptual and cognitive skills, the mechanisms of transfer are not well-understood. In line with previous work, we suggest that transfer is dependent upon common demands between the game and transfer task. In the current study, participants played one of four action games with varying speed, visual, and attentional demands for 20 h. We examined whether training enhanced performance for attentional blink, selective attention, attending to multiple items, visual search and auditory detection. Non-gamers who played the game (Modern Combat) with the highest demands showed transfer to tasks of attentional blink and attending to multiple items. The game (MGS Touch) with fewer attentional demands also decreased attentional blink, but to a lesser degree. Other games failed to show transfer, despite having many action game characteristics but at a reduced intensity. The results support the common demands hypothesis. PMID:25713551

  5. Enhancing perceptual and attentional skills requires common demands between the action video games and transfer tasks.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Oei, Adam C; Patterson, Michael D

    2015-01-01

    Despite increasing evidence that shows action video game play improves perceptual and cognitive skills, the mechanisms of transfer are not well-understood. In line with previous work, we suggest that transfer is dependent upon common demands between the game and transfer task. In the current study, participants played one of four action games with varying speed, visual, and attentional demands for 20 h. We examined whether training enhanced performance for attentional blink, selective attention, attending to multiple items, visual search and auditory detection. Non-gamers who played the game (Modern Combat) with the highest demands showed transfer to tasks of attentional blink and attending to multiple items. The game (MGS Touch) with fewer attentional demands also decreased attentional blink, but to a lesser degree. Other games failed to show transfer, despite having many action game characteristics but at a reduced intensity. The results support the common demands hypothesis.

  6. Enhancing perceptual and attentional skills requires common demands between the action video games and transfer tasks

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Adam C Oei

    2015-02-01

    Full Text Available Despite increasing evidence that shows action video game play improves perceptual and cognitive skills, the mechanisms of transfer are not well understood. In line with previous work, we suggest that transfer is dependent upon common demands between the game and transfer task. In the current study, participants played one of four action games with varying speed, visual, and attentional demands for twenty hours. We examined whether training enhanced performance for attentional blink, selective attention, attending to multiple items, visual search and auditory detection. Non-gamers who played the game (Modern Combat with the highest demands showed transfer to tasks of attentional blink and attending to multiple items. The game (MGS Touch with fewer attentional demands also decreased attentional blink, but to a lesser degree. Other games failed to show transfer, despite having many action game characteristics but at a reduced intensity. The results support the common demands hypothesis

  7. Pupillary Response to Cognitive Demand in Parkinson’s Disease: A Pilot Study

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Melike Kahya

    2018-04-01

    Full Text Available Previous studies have shown that pupillary response, a physiological measure of cognitive workload, reflects cognitive demand in healthy younger and older adults. However, the relationship between cognitive workload and cognitive demand in Parkinson’s disease (PD remains unclear. The aim of this pilot study was to examine the pupillary response to cognitive demand in a letter-number sequencing (LNS task between 16 non-demented individuals with PD (age, median (Q1–Q3: 68 (62–72; 10 males and 10 control participants (age: 63 (59–67; 2 males, matched for age, education, and Montreal Cognitive Assessment (MOCA scores. A mixed model analysis was employed to investigate cognitive workload changes as a result of incremental cognitive demand for both groups. As expected, no differences were found in cognitive scores on the LNS between groups. Cognitive workload, exemplified by greater pupil dilation, increased with incremental cognitive demand in both groups (p = 0.003. No significant between-group (p = 0.23 or interaction effects were found (p = 0.45. In addition, individuals who achieved to complete the task at higher letter-number (LN load responded differently to increased cognitive demand compared with those who completed at lower LN load (p < 0.001, regardless of disease status. Overall, the findings indicated that pupillary response reflects incremental cognitive demand in non-demented people with PD and healthy controls. Further research is needed to investigate the pupillary response to incremental cognitive demand of PD patients with dementia compared to non-demented PD and healthy controls.Highlights-Pupillary response reflects cognitive demand in both non-demented people with PD and healthy controls-Although not significant due to insufficient power, non-demented individuals with PD had increased cognitive workload compared to the healthy controls throughout the testing-Pupillary response may be a valid measure of cognitive demand in

  8. Physiological Indices of Pilots' Abilities Under Varying Task Demands.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wang, Zhen; Zheng, Lingxiao; Lu, Yanyu; Fu, Shan

    2016-04-01

    This study investigated pilots' ability by examining the effects of flight experience and task demand on physiological reactions, and analyzing the diagnostic meanings underlying correlated parameters. A total of 12 experienced pilots and 12 less experienced pilots performed 4 simulated flight tasks, including normal and emergency situations. Fixation duration (FD), saccade rate (SR), blink rate (BR), heart rate (HR), respiration rate (RR), and respiration amplitude (RA) were measured during the tasks. More experienced pilots adapted their SR flexibly to changing task demands and had significantly lower SR than less experienced pilots during emergency tasks (29.6 ± 20.0 vs. 70.1 ± 67.1 saccades/min). BR, HR, and RR were affected by pilot experience but not by task demand. More experienced pilots had lower BR, HR, and RR than less experienced pilots during both normal tasks (BR: 14.3 ± 13.0 vs. 32.9 ± 25.8 blinks/min; HR: 72.7 ± 7.9 vs. 83.2 ± 7.2 bpm; RR: 15.4 ± 2.1 vs. 19.5 ± 5.2 breaths/min) and emergency tasks (BR: 10.2 ± 5.0 vs. 32.3 ± 20.8 blinks/min; HR: 73.3 ± 7.3 vs. 82.2 ± 11.6 bpm; RR: 15.6 ± 1.9 vs. 18.0 ± 3.2 breaths/min). FD and RA were not sensitive to either flight experience or task demand. Physiological reactions have the potential to reflect pilots' ability from different aspects. SR and BR could indicate pilots' differences in information access strategy. HR and RR could reflect a pilot's physical fitness. These findings are useful for understanding a pilot's ability.

  9. Driving monotonous routes in a train simulator: the effect of task demand on driving performance and subjective experience.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dunn, Naomi; Williamson, Ann

    2012-01-01

    Although monotony is widely recognised as being detrimental to performance, its occurrence and effects are not yet well understood. This is despite the fact that task-related characteristics, such as monotony and low task demand, have been shown to contribute to performance decrements over time. Participants completed one of two simulated train-driving scenarios. Both were highly monotonous and differed only in terms of the level of cognitive demand required (i.e. low demand or high demand). These results highlight the seriously detrimental effects of the combination of monotony and low task demands and clearly show that even a relatively minor increase in cognitive demand can mitigate adverse monotony-related effects on performance for extended periods of time. Monotony is an inherent characteristic of transport industries, including rail, aviation and road transport, which can have adverse impact on safety, reliability and efficiency. This study highlights possible strategies for mitigating these adverse effects. Practitioner Summary: This study provides evidence for the importance of cognitive demand in mitigating monotony-related effects on performance. The results have clear implications for the rapid onset of performance deterioration in low demand monotonous tasks and demonstrate that these detrimental performance effects can be overcome with simple solutions, such as making the task more cognitively engaging.

  10. Hysteresis in Mental Workload and Task Performance: The Influence of Demand Transitions and Task Prioritization.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jansen, Reinier J; Sawyer, Ben D; van Egmond, René; de Ridder, Huib; Hancock, Peter A

    2016-12-01

    We examine how transitions in task demand are manifested in mental workload and performance in a dual-task setting. Hysteresis has been defined as the ongoing influence of demand levels prior to a demand transition. Authors of previous studies predominantly examined hysteretic effects in terms of performance. However, little is known about the temporal development of hysteresis in mental workload. A simulated driving task was combined with an auditory memory task. Participants were instructed to prioritize driving or to prioritize both tasks equally. Three experimental conditions with low, high, and low task demands were constructed by manipulating the frequency of lane changing. Multiple measures of subjective mental workload were taken during experimental conditions. Contrary to our prediction, no hysteretic effects were found after the high- to low-demand transition. However, a hysteretic effect in mental workload was found within the high-demand condition, which degraded toward the end of the high condition. Priority instructions were not reflected in performance. Online assessment of both performance and mental workload demonstrates the transient nature of hysteretic effects. An explanation for the observed hysteretic effect in mental workload is offered in terms of effort regulation. An informed arrival at the scene is important in safety operations, but peaks in mental workload should be avoided to prevent buildup of fatigue. Therefore, communication technologies should incorporate the historical profile of task demand. © 2016, Human Factors and Ergonomics Society.

  11. Gait, dual task and history of falls in elderly with preserved cognition, mild cognitive impairment, and mild Alzheimer's disease

    OpenAIRE

    Ansai, Juliana H.; Andrade, Larissa P.; Rossi, Paulo G.; Takahashi, Anielle C.M.; Vale, Francisco A.C.; Rebelatto, Jos? R.

    2017-01-01

    Background Studies with functional and applicable methods and new cognitive demands involving executive function are needed to improve screening, prevention and rehabilitation of cognitive impairment and falls. Objective to identify differences in gait, dual task performances, and history of falls between elderly people with preserved cognition, mild cognitive impairment and mild Alzheimer's disease. Method A cross-sectional study was conducted. The sample consisted of 40 community-dwelling o...

  12. Task demands and individual variation in referring expressions

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Baltaretu, Adriana-Alexandra; Castro Ferreira, Thiago

    Aiming to improve the human-likeness of natural language generation systems, this study investigates different sources of variation that might influence the production of referring expressions (REs), namely the effect of task demands and inter- intra- individual variation. We collected REs using a

  13. Trait Mindfulness and Cognitive Task Performance

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Emalee J. W. Quickel

    2014-11-01

    Full Text Available Mindfulness meditation (MM training has been shown to have positive effects on working memory and focused attention tasks. Clarifying the construct of mindfulness is important so that mindfulness can be studied effectively in individual differences and cognition research. The current study tested whether trait mindfulness alone explains any of the variability on task performance. Five commonly used mindfulness scales, as well as six standardized and experimental attention and working memory tasks were administered to 164 participants with no meditation experience. Confirmatory factor analysis found that the common variance denoted by measures of trait mindfulness is unrelated to the common variance among tasks requiring focused attention. These results indicate that mindfulness scales may not be capturing the attentional aspects of mindfulness. Individuals who score high on mindfulness scales do not perform better on focused attention tasks than those who score lower on mindfulness scales. These results have implications for defining and operationalizing mindfulness.

  14. Selection of spatial reference frames depends on task's demands

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Greeshma Sharma

    2016-12-01

    Full Text Available Spatial reference frames (SRF are the means of representing spatial relations or locations either in an egocentric coordinate system (centred on navigator or in an allocentric coordinate system (Centred on object. It is necessary to understand when and how spatial representation switches between allocentric and egocentric reference frames in context to spatial tasks. The objective of this study was to explore if the elementary spatial representation does exist, whether it would remain consistent or change under the influence of a task's demand. Also, we explored how the SRF would assist if the environment is enriched with landmarks, having multiple routes for wayfinding. The results showed that the switching of SRF depends not only on the default representation but also on a task's demand. They also demonstrated that participants who were using allocentric representation performed better in the presence of landmarks.

  15. eHealth literacy demands and cognitive processes underlying barriers in consumer health information seeking

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Connie V. Chan

    2015-12-01

    Full Text Available Background: Consumer eHealth tools play an increasingly important role in engaging patients as participants in managing their health and seeking health information. However, there is a documented gap between the skill and knowledge demands of eHealth systems and user competencies to benefit from these tools. Objective: This research aims to reveal the knowledge- and skill-related barriers to effective use of eHealth tools. Methods: We used a micro-analytic framework for characterizing the different cognitive dimensions of eHealth literacy to classify task demands and barriers that 20 participants experienced while performing online information-seeking and decision-making tasks. Results: Participants ranged widely in their task performance across all 6 tasks as measured by task scores and types of barriers encountered. The highest performing participant experienced only 14 barriers whereas the lowest scoring one experienced 153. A more detailed analysis of two tasks revealed that the highest number of incorrect answers and experienced barriers were caused by tasks requiring: (a Media literacy and Science literacy at high cognitive complexity levels and (b a combination of Numeracy and Information literacy at different cognitive complexity levels. Conclusions: Applying this type of analysis enabled us to characterize task demands by literacy type and by cognitive complexity. Mapping barriers to literacy types provided insight into the interaction between users and eHealth tasks. Although the gap between eHealth tools, users’ skills, and knowledge can be difficult to bridge, an understanding of the cognitive complexity and literacy demands can serve to reduce the gap between designer and consumer.

  16. The Effects of Task Demand and External Stimuli on Learner's Stress Perception and Performance

    OpenAIRE

    Lim, Yee Mei; Ayesh, Aladdin, 1972-; Stacey, Martin; Tan, Li Peng

    2016-01-01

    Over the past decades, research in e-learning has begun to take emotions into account, which is also known as affective learning. It advocates an education system that is sentient of learner's cognitive and affective states, as learners' performance could be affected by emotional factors. This exploratory research examines the impacts of task demand and external stimuli on learner's stress perception and job performance. Experiments are conducted on 160 undergraduate students from a higher le...

  17. Motor variability during sustained contractions increases with cognitive demand in older adults

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Marnie L Vanden Noven

    2014-05-01

    Full Text Available To expose cortical involvement in age-related changes in motor performance, we compared steadiness (force fluctuations and fatigability of submaximal isometric contractions with the ankle dorsiflexor muscles in older and young adults and with varying levels of cognitive demand imposed. Sixteen young (20 ± 2 yr: 8 men, 8 women and 17 older adults (69 ±4 yr: 9 men, 8 women attended three sessions and performed a 40 s isometric contraction at 5% maximal voluntary contraction (MVC force followed by an isometric contraction at 30% MVC until task failure. The cognitive demand required during the submaximal contractions in each session differed as follows: 1 high-cognitive demand session where difficult mental math was imposed (counting backward by 13 from a 4-digit number; 2 low-cognitive demand session which involved simple mental math (counting backward by one; and 3 control session with no mental math. Anxiety was elevated during the high-cognitive demand session compared with other sessions for both age groups but more so for the older adults than young adults (p0.05, but the variability between sessions (standard deviation [SD] of 3 sessions was greater for older adults than young (2.02 ± 1.05 min vs. 1.25 ± 0.51 min, P<0.05. Thus, variability in lower limb motor performance for low and moderate force isometric tasks increased with age and was exacerbated when cognitive demand was imposed, and may be related to modulation of synergist and antagonist muscles and an altered neural strategy with age originating from central sources. These data have significant implications for cognitively demanding low-force motor tasks that are relevant to functional and ergonomic in an aging workforce.

  18. Gait, dual task and history of falls in elderly with preserved cognition, mild cognitive impairment, and mild Alzheimer's disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ansai, Juliana H; Andrade, Larissa P; Rossi, Paulo G; Takahashi, Anielle C M; Vale, Francisco A C; Rebelatto, José R

    Studies with functional and applicable methods and new cognitive demands involving executive function are needed to improve screening, prevention and rehabilitation of cognitive impairment and falls. to identify differences in gait, dual task performances, and history of falls between elderly people with preserved cognition, mild cognitive impairment and mild Alzheimer's disease. A cross-sectional study was conducted. The sample consisted of 40 community-dwelling older adults with preserved cognition, 40 older adults with mild cognitive impairment, and 38 older adults with mild Alzheimer's disease. The assessment consisted of anamneses, gait (measured by the 10-meter walk test), dual task (measured by the Timed Up and Go Test associated with the motor-cognitive task of calling a phone number), and history of falls in the past year. There were no differences among all groups for all variables. However, the Alzheimer's disease Group performed significantly worse in the dual task than the other groups. No item of dual task could distinguish people with preserved cognition from those with mild cognitive impairment. The groups with cognitive impairment included more fallers, and specific characteristics in history of falls between groups were identified. Dual task could distinguish Alzheimer's disease patients specifically from other cognitive profiles. Copyright © 2017 Associação Brasileira de Pesquisa e Pós-Graduação em Fisioterapia. Publicado por Elsevier Editora Ltda. All rights reserved.

  19. The cognitive complexity of concurrent cognitive-motor tasks reveals age-related deficits in motor performance

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Oliveira, Anderson Souza; Reiche, Mikkel Staall; Vinescu, Cristina Ioana

    2018-01-01

    Aging reduces cognitive functions, and such impairments have implications in mental and motor performance. Cognitive function has been recently linked to the risk of falls in older adults. Physical activities have been used to attenuate the declines in cognitive functions and reduce fall incidence......, but little is known whether a physically active lifestyle can maintain physical performance under cognitively demanding conditions. The aim of this study was to verify whether physically active older adults present similar performance deficits during upper limb response time and precision stepping walking...... tasks when compared to younger adults. Both upper limb and walking tasks involved simple and complex cognitive demands through decision-making. For both tasks, decision-making was assessed by including a distracting factor to the execution. The results showed that older adults were substantially slower...

  20. The influence of an auditory-memory attention-demanding task on postural control in blind persons.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Melzer, Itshak; Damry, Elad; Landau, Anat; Yagev, Ronit

    2011-05-01

    In order to evaluate the effect of an auditory-memory attention-demanding task on balance control, nine blind adults were compared to nine age-gender-matched sighted controls. This issue is particularly relevant for the blind population in which functional assessment of postural control has to be revealed through "real life" motor and cognitive function. The study aimed to explore whether an auditory-memory attention-demanding cognitive task would influence postural control in blind persons and compare this with blindfolded sighted persons. Subjects were instructed to minimize body sway during narrow base upright standing on a single force platform under two conditions: 1) standing still (single task); 2) as in 1) while performing an auditory-memory attention-demanding cognitive task (dual task). Subjects in both groups were required to stand blindfolded with their eyes closed. Center of Pressure displacement data were collected and analyzed using summary statistics and stabilogram-diffusion analysis. Blind and sighted subjects had similar postural sway in eyes closed condition. However, for dual compared to single task, sighted subjects show significant decrease in postural sway while blind subjects did not. The auditory-memory attention-demanding cognitive task had no interference effect on balance control on blind subjects. It seems that sighted individuals used auditory cues to compensate for momentary loss of vision, whereas blind subjects did not. This may suggest that blind and sighted people use different sensorimotor strategies to achieve stability. Copyright © 2010 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  1. Frequency modulation of neural oscillations according to visual task demands.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wutz, Andreas; Melcher, David; Samaha, Jason

    2018-02-06

    Temporal integration in visual perception is thought to occur within cycles of occipital alpha-band (8-12 Hz) oscillations. Successive stimuli may be integrated when they fall within the same alpha cycle and segregated for different alpha cycles. Consequently, the speed of alpha oscillations correlates with the temporal resolution of perception, such that lower alpha frequencies provide longer time windows for perceptual integration and higher alpha frequencies correspond to faster sampling and segregation. Can the brain's rhythmic activity be dynamically controlled to adjust its processing speed according to different visual task demands? We recorded magnetoencephalography (MEG) while participants switched between task instructions for temporal integration and segregation, holding stimuli and task difficulty constant. We found that the peak frequency of alpha oscillations decreased when visual task demands required temporal integration compared with segregation. Alpha frequency was strategically modulated immediately before and during stimulus processing, suggesting a preparatory top-down source of modulation. Its neural generators were located in occipital and inferotemporal cortex. The frequency modulation was specific to alpha oscillations and did not occur in the delta (1-3 Hz), theta (3-7 Hz), beta (15-30 Hz), or gamma (30-50 Hz) frequency range. These results show that alpha frequency is under top-down control to increase or decrease the temporal resolution of visual perception.

  2. Development of Planning Abilities in Normal Aging: Differential Effects of Specific Cognitive Demands

    Science.gov (United States)

    Köstering, Lena; Stahl, Christoph; Leonhart, Rainer; Weiller, Cornelius; Kaller, Christoph P.

    2014-01-01

    In line with the frontal hypothesis of aging, the ability to plan ahead undergoes substantial change during normal aging. Although impairments on the Tower of London planning task were reported earlier, associations between age-related declines and specific cognitive demands on planning have not been studied. Here we investigated the impact of…

  3. Effect of task demands on dual coding of pictorial stimuli.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Babbitt, B C

    1982-01-01

    Recent studies have suggested that verbal labeling of a picture does not occur automatically. Although several experiments using paired-associate tasks produced little evidence indicating the use of a verbal code with picture stimuli, the tasks were probably not sensitive to whether the codes were activated initially. It is possible that verbal labels were activated at input, but not used later in performing the tasks. The present experiment used a color-naming interference task in order to assess, with a more sensitive measure, the amount of verbal coding occurring in response to word or picture input. Subjects named the color of ink in which words were printed following either word or picture input. If verbal labeling of the input occurs, then latency of color naming should increase when the input item and color-naming word are related. The results provided substantial evidence of such verbal activation when the input items were words. However, the presence of verbal activation with picture input was a function of task demands. Activation occurred when a recall memory test was used, but not when a recognition memory test was used. The results support the conclusion that name information (labels) need not be activated during presentation of visual stimuli.

  4. Differential effects of white noise in cognitive and perceptual tasks

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Nora Alicia Herweg

    2015-11-01

    Full Text Available Beneficial effects of noise on higher cognition have recently attracted attention. Hypothesizing an involvement of the mesolimbic dopamine system and its functional interactions with cortical areas, the current study aimed to demonstrate a facilitation of dopamine-dependent attentional and mnemonic functions by externally applying white noise in five behavioral experiments including a total sample of 167 healthy human subjects. During working memory, acoustic white noise impaired accuracy when presented during the maintenance period (experiment 1-3. In a reward based long-term memory task, white noise accelerated perceptual judgments for scene images during encoding but left subsequent recognition memory unaffected (experiment 4. In a modified Posner task (experiment 5, the benefit due to white noise in attentional orienting correlated weakly with reward dependence, a personality trait that has been associated with the dopaminergic system. These results suggest that white noise has no general effect on cognitive functions. Instead, they indicate differential effects on perception and cognition depending on a variety of factors such as task demands and timing of white noise presentation.

  5. Differential effects of white noise in cognitive and perceptual tasks.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Herweg, Nora A; Bunzeck, Nico

    2015-01-01

    Beneficial effects of noise on higher cognition have recently attracted attention. Hypothesizing an involvement of the mesolimbic dopamine system and its functional interactions with cortical areas, the current study aimed to demonstrate a facilitation of dopamine-dependent attentional and mnemonic functions by externally applying white noise in five behavioral experiments including a total sample of 167 healthy human subjects. During working memory, acoustic white noise impaired accuracy when presented during the maintenance period (Experiments 1-3). In a reward based long-term memory task, white noise accelerated perceptual judgments for scene images during encoding but left subsequent recognition memory unaffected (Experiment 4). In a modified Posner task (Experiment 5), the benefit due to white noise in attentional orienting correlated weakly with reward dependence, a personality trait that has been associated with the dopaminergic system. These results suggest that white noise has no general effect on cognitive functions. Instead, they indicate differential effects on perception and cognition depending on a variety of factors such as task demands and timing of white noise presentation.

  6. New social tasks for cognitive psychology; or, new cognitive tasks for social psychology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wettersten, John

    2014-01-01

    To elucidate how differing theories of rationality lead to differing practices, their social rules must be analyzed. This is true not merely in science but also in society at large. This analysis of social thinking requires both the identification of innate cognitive social psychological processes and explanations of their relations with differing rules of rational practice. These new tasks can enable social psychologists to contribute to the study of how social situations facilitate or inhibit rational practice and enable cognitive psychologists to improve social psychological theory. In contrast to dominant current research strategies, social and cognitive psychologists can integrate social studies of rational practices and their consequences with studies of underlying cognitive psychological processes. In this article I do not attempt to carry out these tasks but rather point to both their lack of recognition and their importance.

  7. Effects of Gait and Cognitive Task Difficulty on Cognitive-Motor Interference in Aging

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Prudence Plummer-D'Amato

    2012-01-01

    Full Text Available Although gait-related dual-task interference in aging is well established, the effect of gait and cognitive task difficulty on dual-task interference is poorly understood. The purpose of this study was to examine the effect of gait and cognitive task difficulty on cognitive-motor interference in aging. Fifteen older adults (72.1 years, SD 5.2 and 20 young adults (21.7 years, SD 1.6 performed three walking tasks of varying difficulty (self-selected speed, fast speed, and fast speed with obstacle crossing under single- and dual-task conditions. The cognitive tasks were the auditory Stroop task and the clock task. There was a significant Group × Gait Task × Cognitive Task interaction for the dual-task effect on gait speed. After adjusting for education, there were no significant effects of gait or cognitive task difficulty on the dual-task effects on cognitive task performance. The results of this study provide evidence that gait task difficulty influences dual-task effects on gait speed, especially in older adults. Moreover, the effects of gait task difficulty on dual-task interference appear to be influenced by the difficulty of the cognitive task. Education is an important factor influencing cognitive-motor interference effects on cognition, but not gait.

  8. Motor Variability during Sustained Contractions Increases with Cognitive Demand in Older Adults

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vanden Noven, Marnie L.; Pereira, Hugo M.; Yoon, Tejin; Stevens, Alyssa A.; Nielson, Kristy A.; Hunter, Sandra K.

    2014-01-01

    To expose cortical involvement in age-related changes in motor performance, we compared steadiness (force fluctuations) and fatigability of submaximal isometric contractions with the ankle dorsiflexor muscles in older and young adults and with varying levels of cognitive demand imposed. Sixteen young (20.4 ± 2.1 year: 8 men, 9 women) and 17 older adults (68.8 ± 4.4 years: 9 men, 8 women) attended three sessions and performed a 40 s isometric contraction at 5% maximal voluntary contraction (MVC) force followed by an isometric contraction at 30% MVC until task failure. The cognitive demand required during the submaximal contractions in each session differed as follows: (1) high-cognitive demand session where difficult mental math was imposed (counting backward by 13 from a 4-digit number); (2) low-cognitive demand session which involved simple mental math (counting backward by 1); and (3) control session with no mental math. Anxiety was elevated during the high-cognitive demand session compared with other sessions for both age groups but more so for the older adults than young adults (p  Older adults had larger force fluctuations than young adults during: (1) the 5% MVC task as cognitive demand increased (p  = 0.007), and (2) the fatiguing contraction for all sessions (p  = 0.002). Time to task failure did not differ between sessions or age groups (p  > 0.05), but the variability between sessions (standard deviation of three sessions) was greater for older adults than young (2.02 ± 1.05 vs. 1.25 ± 0.51 min, p  age and was exacerbated when cognitive demand was imposed, and may be related to modulation of synergist and antagonist muscles and an altered neural strategy with age originating from central sources. These data have significant implications for cognitively demanding low-force motor tasks that are relevant to functional and ergonomic in an aging workforce. PMID:24904410

  9. Learning to remember: Cognitive training-induced attenuation of age-related memory decline depends on sex and cognitive demand, and can transfer to untrained cognitive domains

    Science.gov (United States)

    Talboom, Joshua S.; West, Stephen G.; Engler-Chiurazzi, Elizabeth B.; Enders, Craig K.; Crain, Ian; Bimonte-Nelson, Heather A.

    2014-01-01

    Aging is associated with progressive changes in learning and memory. A potential approach to attenuate age-related cognitive decline is cognitive training. In this study, adult male and female rats were given either repeated exposure to a T-maze, or no exposure to any maze, and then tested on a final battery of cognitive tasks. Two groups of each sex were tested from 6-18 months old on the same T-maze; one group received a version testing spatial reference memory, and the other group received only the procedural testing components with minimal cognitive demand. Groups three and four of each sex had no maze exposure until the final battery, and were comprised of aged or young rats. The final maze battery included the practiced T-maze plus two novel tasks, one with a similar, and one with a different, memory type to the practice task. The fifth group of each sex was not maze tested, serving as an aged control for the effects of maze testing on neurotrophin protein levels in cognitive brain regions. Results showed that adult intermittent cognitive training enhanced performance on the practice task when aged in both sexes, that cognitive training benefits transferred to novel tasks only in females, and that cognitive demand was necessary for these effects since rats receiving only the procedural testing components showed no improvement on the final maze battery. Further, for both sexes, rats that showed faster learning when young demonstrated better memory when aged. Age-related increases in neurotrophin concentrations in several brain regions were revealed, which was related to performance on the training task only in females. This longitudinal study supports the tenet that cognitive training can help one remember later in life, with broader enhancements and associations with neurotrophins in females. PMID:25104561

  10. Production practices affecting worker task demands in concrete operations: A case study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Memarian, Babak; Mitropoulos, Panagiotis

    2015-01-01

    Construction work involves significant physical, mental, and temporal task demands. Excessive task demands can have negative consequences for safety, errors and production. This exploratory study investigates the magnitude and sources of task demands on a concrete operation, and examines the effect of the production practices on the workers' task demands. The NASA Task Load Index was used to measure the perceived task demands of two work crews. The operation involved the construction of a cast-in-place concrete building under high schedule pressures. Interviews with each crew member were used to identify the main sources of the perceived demands. Extensive field observations and interviews with the supervisors and crews identified the production practices. The workers perceived different level of task demands depending on their role. The production practices influenced the task demands in two ways: (1) practices related to work organization, task design, resource management, and crew management mitigated the task demands; and (2) other practices related to work planning and crew management increased the crew's ability to cope with and adapt to high task demands. The findings identify production practices that regulate the workers' task demands. The effect of task demands on performance is mitigated by the ability to cope with high demands.

  11. Walking and talking: an investigation of cognitive-motor dual tasking in multiple sclerosis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hamilton, F; Rochester, L; Paul, L; Rafferty, D; O'Leary, C P; Evans, J J

    2009-10-01

    Deficits in motor functioning, including walking, and in cognitive functions, including attention, are known to be prevalent in multiple sclerosis (MS), though little attention has been paid to how impairments in these areas of functioning interact. This study investigated the effects of performing a concurrent cognitive task when walking in people with MS. Level of task demand was manipulated to investigate whether this affected level of dual-task decrement. Eighteen participants with MS and 18 healthy controls took part. Participants completed walking and cognitive tasks under single- and dual-task conditions. Compared to healthy controls, MS participants showed greater decrements in performance under dual-task conditions in cognitive task performance, walking speed and swing time variability. In the MS group, the degree of decrement under dual-task conditions was related to levels of fatigue, a measure of general cognitive functioning and self-reported everyday cognitive errors, but not to measures of disease severity or duration. Difficulty with walking and talking in MS may be a result of a divided attention deficit or of overloading of the working memory system, and further investigation is needed. We suggest that difficulty with walking and talking in MS may lead to practical problems in everyday life, including potentially increasing the risk of falls. Clinical tools to assess cognitive-motor dual-tasking ability are needed.

  12. Generic cognitive adaptations to task interference in task switching

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Poljac, E.; Bekkering, H.

    2009-01-01

    The present study investigated how the activation of previous tasks interferes with the execution of future tasks as a result of temporal manipulations. Color and shape matching tasks were organized in runs of two trials each. The tasks were specified by a cue presented before a task run, cueing

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    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.

  14. Embedded interruptions and task complexity influence schema-related cognitive load progression in an abstract learning task.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wirzberger, Maria; Esmaeili Bijarsari, Shirin; Rey, Günter Daniel

    2017-09-01

    Cognitive processes related to schema acquisition comprise an essential source of demands in learning situations. Since the related amount of cognitive load is supposed to change over time, plausible temporal models of load progression based on different theoretical backgrounds are inspected in this study. A total of 116 student participants completed a basal symbol sequence learning task, which provided insights into underlying cognitive dynamics. Two levels of task complexity were determined by the amount of elements within the symbol sequence. In addition, interruptions due to an embedded secondary task occurred at five predefined stages over the task. Within the resulting 2x5-factorial mixed between-within design, the continuous monitoring of efficiency in learning performance enabled assumptions on relevant resource investment. From the obtained results, a nonlinear change of learning efficiency over time seems most plausible in terms of cognitive load progression. Moreover, different effects of the induced interruptions show up in conditions of task complexity, which indicate the activation of distinct cognitive mechanisms related to structural aspects of the task. Findings are discussed in the light of evidence from research on memory and information processing. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  15. Augmented Cognition - Phase 4 Cognitive Assessment and Task Management (CAT-M)

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Bingham, Richard; Kineses, Wilhelm E

    2008-01-01

    .... Initially, the Augmented Cognition program has focused on cognitive overload situations. Looking towards a complete solution for Augmented Cognition, another situation required the understanding of the concept of task underload...

  16. Change in Thinking Demands for Students Across the Phases of a Science Task: An Exploratory Study

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tekkumru-Kisa, Miray; Schunn, Christian; Stein, Mary Kay; Reynolds, Bertha

    2017-08-01

    Science education communities around the world have increasingly emphasized engaging students in the disciplinary practices of science as they engage in high levels of reasoning about scientific ideas. Consistently, this is a critical moment in time in the USA as it goes through a new wave of science education reform within the context of Next Generation Science Standards (NGSS). We argue that the placement of high demands on students' thinking (i.e., a high level of thinking) in combination with positioning students to use disciplinary practices as they try to make sense of scientific ideas (i.e., a deep kind of thinking) constitute critical aspects of the reform. The main purpose of this paper is to identify and describe the kinds and levels of thinking in which students engage when they are invited to think and reason as demanded by NGSS-aligned curricular tasks. Our analysis of video records of classrooms in which an NGSS-aligned, cognitively demanding task was used, revealed many ways in which the aspirational level and kind of student thinking will not be met in many science classrooms. We propose a way of characterizing and labeling the differences among these kinds and levels of thinking during the implementation of a reform-based biology curriculum. These categories, which focus on two important features emphasized in the NGSS, can help us to better understand, diagnose, and communicate issues during the implementation of high-level tasks in science classrooms.

  17. An Integrated Model of Cognitive Control in Task Switching

    Science.gov (United States)

    Altmann, Erik M.; Gray, Wayne D.

    2008-01-01

    A model of cognitive control in task switching is developed in which controlled performance depends on the system maintaining access to a code in episodic memory representing the most recently cued task. The main constraint on access to the current task code is proactive interference from old task codes. This interference and the mechanisms that…

  18. E-learning, dual-task, and cognitive load: The anatomy of a failed experiment.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Van Nuland, Sonya E; Rogers, Kem A

    2016-01-01

    The rising popularity of commercial anatomy e-learning tools has been sustained, in part, due to increased annual enrollment and a reduction in laboratory hours across educational institutions. While e-learning tools continue to gain popularity, the research methodologies used to investigate their impact on learning remain imprecise. As new user interfaces are introduced, it is critical to understand how functionality can influence the load placed on a student's memory resources, also known as cognitive load. To study cognitive load, a dual-task paradigm wherein a learner performs two tasks simultaneously is often used, however, its application within educational research remains uncommon. Using previous paradigms as a guide, a dual-task methodology was developed to assess the cognitive load imposed by two commercial anatomical e-learning tools. Results indicate that the standard dual-task paradigm, as described in the literature, is insensitive to the cognitive load disparities across e-learning tool interfaces. Confounding variables included automation of responses, task performance tradeoff, and poor understanding of primary task cognitive load requirements, leading to unreliable quantitative results. By modifying the secondary task from a basic visual response to a more cognitively demanding task, such as a modified Stroop test, the automation of secondary task responses can be reduced. Furthermore, by recording baseline measures for the primary task as well as the secondary task, it is possible for task performance tradeoff to be detected. Lastly, it is imperative that the cognitive load of the primary task be designed such that it does not overwhelm the individual's ability to learn new material. © 2015 American Association of Anatomists.

  19. Involuntary autobiographical memories are relatively more often reported during high cognitive load tasks.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Barzykowski, Krystian; Niedźwieńska, Agnieszka

    2018-01-01

    Recent studies on involuntary autobiographical memories (IAMs) in daily life have shown that they are most frequently reported during daily routines (e.g. while ironing). Such studies have suggested that reporting IAMs may be influenced by the level of the ongoing task demands and availability of cognitive resources. In two studies, we investigated the effects of cognitive load on reporting IAMs. To examine the presumed cognitive load dependency of IAMs, we utilised an often-employed experimental paradigm (Schlagman & Kvavilashvili, 2008) to elicit IAMs under conditions that differed in cognitive load. When performing a vigilance task, participants had to interrupt the task each time they experienced any spontaneous mental contents and write them down. We manipulated the level of cognitive load by either instructing (cognitive load group) or not instructing (control group) participants to perform an additional demanding task. We compared the groups on the number of IAMs and other mental contents (non-IAM contents) recorded, as well as on the frequency of IAMs that was calculated as a proportion of IAMs in all mental contents reported by the participant. We expected that if reporting IAMs depends on the level of cognitive demands, then we should observe lower frequency of IAMs in the cognitive load group compared to the control group. Consistently across studies, we observed a lower number of IAMs and non-IAM contents in the cognitive load group. However, IAMs unexpectedly constituted a higher percentage of all mental contents when participants were cognitively loaded. Further implications of the cognitive load effects for IAMs research and experimental methodology are discussed. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  20. Cognitive and Physical Fatigue Tasks Enhance Pain, Cognitive Fatigue and Physical Fatigue in People with Fibromyalgia

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dailey, Dana L; Keffala, Valerie J; Sluka, Kathleen A

    2014-01-01

    Objective Fibromyalgia is a condition characterized by chronic widespread muscle pain and fatigue. The primary objective of this study was to determine if pain, perceived cognitive fatigue, and perceived physical fatigue were enhanced in participants with fibromyalgia compared to healthy controls during a cognitive fatigue task, a physical fatigue task and a dual fatigue task. Methods Twenty four people with fibromyalgia and 33 healthy controls completed pain, fatigue and function measures. A cognitive fatigue task (Controlled Oral Word Association Test) and physical fatigue task (Valpar peg test) were done individually and combined for a dual fatigue task. Resting pain, perceived cognitive fatigue and perceived physical fatigue were assessed during each task using visual analogue scales. Function was assessed with shoulder range of motion and grip. Results People with fibromyalgia had significantly higher increases in pain, cognitive fatigue and physical fatigue when compared to healthy controls after completion of a cognitive fatigue task, a physical fatigue task, or a dual fatigue task (pfatigue tasks, respectively. Conclusions These data show that people with fibromyalgia show larger increases in pain, perceived cognitive fatigue and perceived physical fatigue to both cognitive and physical fatigue tasks compared to healthy controls. The increases in pain and fatigue during cognitive and physical fatigue tasks could influence subject participation in daily activities and rehabilitation. PMID:25074583

  1. Task demands determine comparison strategy in whole probe change detection.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Udale, Rob; Farrell, Simon; Kent, Chris

    2018-05-01

    Detecting a change in our visual world requires a process that compares the external environment (test display) with the contents of memory (study display). We addressed the question of whether people strategically adapt the comparison process in response to different decision loads. Study displays of 3 colored items were presented, followed by 'whole-display' probes containing 3 colored shapes. Participants were asked to decide whether any probed items contained a new feature. In Experiments 1-4, irrelevant changes to the probed item's locations or feature bindings influenced memory performance, suggesting that participants employed a comparison process that relied on spatial locations. This finding occurred irrespective of whether participants were asked to decide about the whole display, or only a single cued item within the display. In Experiment 5, when the base-rate of changes in the nonprobed items increased (increasing the incentive to use the cue effectively), participants were not influenced by irrelevant changes in location or feature bindings. In addition, we observed individual differences in the use of spatial cues. These results suggest that participants can flexibly switch between spatial and nonspatial comparison strategies, depending on interactions between individual differences and task demand factors. These findings have implications for models of visual working memory that assume that the comparison between study and test obligatorily relies on accessing visual features via their binding to location. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2018 APA, all rights reserved).

  2. A glucose-caffeine 'energy drink' ameliorates subjective and performance deficits during prolonged cognitive demand.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kennedy, David O; Scholey, Andrew B

    2004-06-01

    Effects of a combination of caffeine and glucose were assessed in two double-blind, placebo-controlled, cross-over studies during extended performance of cognitively demanding tasks. In the first study, 30 participants received two drinks containing carbohydrate and caffeine (68 g/38 mg; 68 g/46 mg, respectively) and a placebo drink, in counter-balanced order, on separate days. In the second study 26 participants received a drink containing 60 g of carbohydrate and 33 mg of caffeine and a placebo drink. In both studies, participants completed a 10-min battery of tasks comprising 2-min versions of Serial 3s and Serial 7s subtraction tasks and a 5-min version of the Rapid Visual Information Processing task (RVIP), plus a rating of 'mental fatigue', once before the drink and six times in succession commencing 10 min after its consumption. In comparison to placebo, all three active drinks improved the accuracy of RVIP performance and both the drink with the higher level of caffeine in first study and the active drink in the second study resulted in lower ratings of mental fatigue. These results indicate that a combination of caffeine and glucose can ameliorate deficits in cognitive performance and subjective fatigue during extended periods of cognitive demand.

  3. Is a "Complex" Task Really Complex? Validating the Assumption of Cognitive Task Complexity

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sasayama, Shoko

    2016-01-01

    In research on task-based learning and teaching, it has traditionally been assumed that differing degrees of cognitive task complexity can be inferred through task design and/or observations of differing qualities in linguistic production elicited by second language (L2) communication tasks. Without validating this assumption, however, it is…

  4. Investigating the Neural Correlates of Emotion–Cognition Interaction Using an Affective Stroop Task

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Nora M. Raschle

    2017-09-01

    Full Text Available The human brain has the capacity to integrate various sources of information and continuously adapts our behavior according to situational needs in order to allow a healthy functioning. Emotion–cognition interactions are a key example for such integrative processing. However, the neuronal correlates investigating the effects of emotion on cognition remain to be explored and replication studies are needed. Previous neuroimaging studies have indicated an involvement of emotion and cognition related brain structures including parietal and prefrontal cortices and limbic brain regions. Here, we employed whole brain event-related functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI during an affective number Stroop task and aimed at replicating previous findings using an adaptation of an existing task design in 30 healthy young adults. The Stroop task is an indicator of cognitive control and enables the quantification of interference in relation to variations in cognitive load. By the use of emotional primes (negative/neutral prior to Stroop task performance, an emotional variation is added as well. Behavioral in-scanner data showed that negative primes delayed and disrupted cognitive processing. Trials with high cognitive demand furthermore negatively influenced cognitive control mechanisms. Neuronally, the emotional primes consistently activated emotion-related brain regions (e.g., amygdala, insula, and prefrontal brain regions while Stroop task performance lead to activations in cognition networks of the brain (prefrontal cortices, superior temporal lobe, and insula. When assessing the effect of emotion on cognition, increased cognitive demand led to decreases in neural activation in response to emotional stimuli (negative > neutral within prefrontal cortex, amygdala, and insular cortex. Overall, these results suggest that emotional primes significantly impact cognitive performance and increasing cognitive demand leads to reduced neuronal activation in

  5. Performances on a cognitive theory of mind task: specific decline or general cognitive deficits? Evidence from normal aging.

    Science.gov (United States)

    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.

  6. Effects of Cognitive Training with and without Aerobic Exercise on Cognitively-Demanding Everyday Activities

    Science.gov (United States)

    McDaniel, Mark A.; Binder, Ellen F.; Bugg, Julie M.; Waldum, Emily R.; Dufault, Carolyn; Meyer, Amanda; Johanning, Jennifer; Zheng, Jie; Schechtman, Kenneth B.; Kudelka, Chris

    2015-01-01

    We investigated the potential benefits of a novel cognitive training protocol and an aerobic exercise intervention, both individually and in concert, on older adults’ performances in laboratory simulations of select real-world tasks. The cognitive training focused on a range of cognitive processes, including attentional coordination, prospective memory, and retrospective-memory retrieval, processes that are likely involved in many everyday tasks, and that decline with age. Primary outcome measures were three laboratory tasks that simulated everyday activities: Cooking Breakfast, Virtual Week, and Memory for Health Information. Two months of cognitive training improved older adults’ performance on prospective memory tasks embedded in Virtual Week. Cognitive training, either alone or in combination with six months of aerobic exercise, did not significantly improve Cooking Breakfast or Memory for Health Information. Although gains in aerobic power were comparable to previous reports, aerobic exercise did not produce improvements for the primary outcome measures. Discussion focuses on the possibility that cognitive training programs that include explicit strategy instruction and varied practice contexts may confer gains to older adults for performance on cognitively challenging everyday tasks. PMID:25244489

  7. Impaired Representation of Time in Schizophrenia Is Linked to Positive Symptoms and Cognitive Demand.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jutta Peterburs

    Full Text Available Time processing critically relies on the mesencephalic dopamine system and striato-prefrontal projections and has thus been suggested to play a key role in schizophrenia. Previous studies have provided evidence for an acceleration of the internal clock in schizophrenia that may be linked to dopaminergic pathology. The present study aimed to assess the relationship between altered time processing in schizophrenia and symptom manifestation in 22 patients and 22 controls. Subjects were required to estimate the time needed for a visual stimulus to complete a horizontal movement towards a target position on trials of varying cognitive demand. It was hypothesized that patients - compared to controls - would be less accurate at estimating the movement time, and that this effect would be modulated by symptom manifestation and task difficulty. In line with the notion of an accelerated internal clock due to dopaminergic dysregulation, particularly patients with severe positive symptoms were expected to underestimate movement time. However, if altered time perception in schizophrenia was better explained in terms of cognitive deficits, patients with severe negative symptoms should be specifically impaired, while generally, task performance should correlate with measures of processing speed and cognitive flexibility. Patients underestimated movement time on more demanding trials, although there was no link to disease-related cognitive dysfunction. Task performance was modulated by symptom manifestation. Impaired estimation of movement time was significantly correlated with PANSS positive symptom scores, with higher positive symptom scores associated with stronger underestimation of movement time. The present data thus support the notion of a deficit in anticipatory and predictive mechanisms in schizophrenia that is modulated both by symptom manifestation and by cognitive demand.

  8. The Attentional Dependence of Emotion Cognition is Variable with the Competing Task

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Cheng Chen

    2016-11-01

    Full Text Available The relationship between emotion and attention has fascinated researchers for decades. Many previous studies have used eye-tracking, ERP, MEG and fMRI to explore this issue but have reached different conclusions: some researchers hold that emotion cognition is an automatic process and independent of attention, while some others believed that emotion cognition is modulated by attentional resources and is a type of controlled processing. The present research aimed to investigate this controversy, and we hypothesized that the attentional dependence of emotion cognition is variable with the competing task. Eye-tracking technology and a dual-task paradigm were adopted, and subjects’ attention was manipulated to fixate at the central task to investigate whether subjects could detect the emotional faces presented in the peripheral area with a decrease or near-absence of attention. The results revealed that when the peripheral task was emotional face discrimination but the central attention-demanding task was different, subjects performed well in the peripheral task, which means that emotional information can be processed in parallel with other stimuli, and there may be a specific channel in the human brain for processing emotional information. However, when the central and peripheral tasks were both emotional face discrimination, subjects could not perform well in the peripheral task, indicating that the processing of emotional information required attentional resources and that it is a type of controlled processing. Therefore, we concluded that the attentional dependence of emotion cognition varied with the competing task.

  9. Surprise responses in the human brain demonstrate statistical learning under high concurrent cognitive demand

    Science.gov (United States)

    Garrido, Marta Isabel; Teng, Chee Leong James; Taylor, Jeremy Alexander; Rowe, Elise Genevieve; Mattingley, Jason Brett

    2016-06-01

    The ability to learn about regularities in the environment and to make predictions about future events is fundamental for adaptive behaviour. We have previously shown that people can implicitly encode statistical regularities and detect violations therein, as reflected in neuronal responses to unpredictable events that carry a unique prediction error signature. In the real world, however, learning about regularities will often occur in the context of competing cognitive demands. Here we asked whether learning of statistical regularities is modulated by concurrent cognitive load. We compared electroencephalographic metrics associated with responses to pure-tone sounds with frequencies sampled from narrow or wide Gaussian distributions. We showed that outliers evoked a larger response than those in the centre of the stimulus distribution (i.e., an effect of surprise) and that this difference was greater for physically identical outliers in the narrow than in the broad distribution. These results demonstrate an early neurophysiological marker of the brain's ability to implicitly encode complex statistical structure in the environment. Moreover, we manipulated concurrent cognitive load by having participants perform a visual working memory task while listening to these streams of sounds. We again observed greater prediction error responses in the narrower distribution under both low and high cognitive load. Furthermore, there was no reliable reduction in prediction error magnitude under high-relative to low-cognitive load. Our findings suggest that statistical learning is not a capacity limited process, and that it proceeds automatically even when cognitive resources are taxed by concurrent demands.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2013-01-01

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

  11. Cognitive and Physical Demands of Activities of Daily Living in Older Adults: Validation of Expert Panel Ratings.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fong, Tamara G; Gleason, Lauren J; Wong, Bonnie; Habtemariam, Daniel; Jones, Richard N; Schmitt, Eva M; de Rooij, Sophia E; Saczynski, Jane S; Gross, Alden L; Bean, Jonathan F; Brown, Cynthia J; Fick, Donna M; Gruber-Baldini, Ann L; O'Connor, Margaret; Tabloski, Patrica A; Marcantonio, Edward R; Inouye, Sharon K

    2015-07-01

    Difficulties with performance of functional activities may result from cognitive and/or physical impairments. To date, there has not been a clear delineation of the physical and cognitive demands of activities of daily living. To quantify the relative physical and cognitive demands required to complete typical functional activities in older adults. Expert panel survey. Web-based platform. Eleven experts from 8 academic medical centers and 300 community-dwelling elderly adults age 70 and older scheduled for elective noncardiac surgery from 2 academic medical centers. Sum scores of expert ratings were calculated and then validated against objective data collected from a prospective longitudinal study. Correlation between expert ratings and objective neuropsychologic tests (memory, language, complex attention) and physical measures (gait speed and grip strength) for performance-based tasks. Managing money, self-administering medications, using the telephone, and preparing meals were rated as requiring significantly more cognitive demand, whereas walking and transferring, moderately strenuous activities, and climbing stairs were assessed as more physically demanding. Largely cognitive activities correlated with objective neuropsychologic performance (r = 0.13-0.23, P cognitive and/or physical demand for completing a specific task adds an additional dimension to standard measures of functional assessment. This additional information may significantly influence decisions about rehabilitation, postacute care needs, treatment plans, and caregiver education. Copyright © 2015 American Academy of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  12. Interference between a fast-paced spatial puzzle task and verbal memory demands.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Epling, Samantha L; Blakely, Megan J; Russell, Paul N; Helton, William S

    2017-06-01

    Research continues to provide evidence that people are poor multi-taskers. Cognitive resource theory is a common explanation for the inability to efficiently perform multiple tasks at the same time. This theory proposes that one's limited supply of cognitive resources can be utilized faster than it is replenished, which results in a performance decline, particularly when these limited resources must be allocated among multiple tasks. Researchers have proposed both domain-specific, for example, spatial versus verbal processing resources, and domain general cognitive resources. In the present research, we investigated whether a spatial puzzle task performed simultaneously with a verbal recall task would impair performance in either task or both tasks, compared to performance on the tasks individually. As hypothesized, a reduction in word recall was found when dual-tasking, though performance on the puzzle task did not significantly differ between the single- and dual-task conditions. This is consistent, in part, with both a general resource theory and a Multiple Resource Theory, but further work is required to better understand the cognitive processing system. The employment of the recall task in the dual-task paradigm with a variety of secondary tasks will help to continue mapping out the specificity (or lack thereof) of cognitive resources utilized in various mental and physical tasks.

  13. Effect of Cognitive Demand on Functional Visual Field Performance in Senior Drivers with Glaucoma

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Viswa Gangeddula

    2017-08-01

    Full Text Available Purpose: To investigate the effect of cognitive demand on functional visual field performance in drivers with glaucoma.Method: This study included 20 drivers with open-angle glaucoma and 13 age- and sex-matched controls. Visual field performance was evaluated under different degrees of cognitive demand: a static visual field condition (C1, dynamic visual field condition (C2, and dynamic visual field condition with active driving (C3 using an interactive, desktop driving simulator. The number of correct responses (accuracy and response times on the visual field task were compared between groups and between conditions using Kruskal–Wallis tests. General linear models were employed to compare cognitive workload, recorded in real-time through pupillometry, between groups and conditions.Results: Adding cognitive demand (C2 and C3 to the static visual field test (C1 adversely affected accuracy and response times, in both groups (p < 0.05. However, drivers with glaucoma performed worse than did control drivers when the static condition changed to a dynamic condition [C2 vs. C1 accuracy; glaucoma: median difference (Q1–Q3 3 (2–6.50 vs. controls: 2 (0.50–2.50; p = 0.05] and to a dynamic condition with active driving [C3 vs. C1 accuracy; glaucoma: 2 (2–6 vs. controls: 1 (0.50–2; p = 0.02]. Overall, drivers with glaucoma exhibited greater cognitive workload than controls (p = 0.02.Conclusion: Cognitive demand disproportionately affects functional visual field performance in drivers with glaucoma. Our results may inform the development of a performance-based visual field test for drivers with glaucoma.

  14. Analysis of operators' diagnosis tasks based on cognitive process

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Zhou Yong; Zhang Li

    2012-01-01

    Diagnosis tasks in nuclear power plants characterized as high-dynamic uncertainties are complex reasoning tasks. Diagnosis errors are the main causes for the error of commission. Firstly, based on mental model theory and perception/action cycle theory, a cognitive model for analyzing operators' diagnosis tasks is proposed. Then, the model is used to investigate a trip event which occurred at crystal river nuclear power plant. The application demonstrates typical cognitive bias and mistakes which operators may make when performing diagnosis tasks. They mainly include the strong confirmation tendency, difficulty to produce complete hypothesis sets, group mindset, non-systematic errors in hypothesis testing, and etc. (authors)

  15. Coloring versus Drawing: Effects of Cognitive Demand on Mood Repair, Flow, and Enjoyment

    Science.gov (United States)

    Forkosh, Jennifer; Drake, Jennifer E.

    2017-01-01

    We examined whether using drawing to distract, by either coloring a design or drawing a design, improves mood more than drawing to express feelings. We manipulated levels of cognitive demand in the first 2 conditions by asking participants to color a design (low cognitive demand) or draw a design (high cognitive demand). After a sad mood…

  16. The role of metacognition in prospective memory: anticipated task demands influence attention allocation strategies.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rummel, Jan; Meiser, Thorsten

    2013-09-01

    The present study investigates how individuals distribute their attentional resources between a prospective memory task and an ongoing task. Therefore, metacognitive expectations about the attentional demands of the prospective-memory task were manipulated while the factual demands were held constant. In Experiments 1a and 1b, we found attentional costs from a prospective-memory task with low factual demands to be significantly reduced when information about the low to-be-expected demands were provided, while prospective-memory performance remained largely unaffected. In Experiment 2, attentional monitoring in a more demanding prospective-memory task also varied with information about the to-be-expected demands (high vs. low) and again there were no equivalent changes in prospective-memory performance. These findings suggest that attention-allocation strategies of prospective memory rely on metacognitive expectations about prospective-memory task demands. Furthermore, the results suggest that attentional monitoring is only functional for prospective memory to the extent to which anticipated task demands reflect objective task demands. Copyright © 2013 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  17. What is difficult for you can be easy for me. Effects of increasing individual task demand on prefrontal lateralization: A tDCS study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vergallito, Alessandra; Romero Lauro, Leonor J; Bonandrini, Rolando; Zapparoli, Laura; Danelli, Laura; Berlingeri, Manuela

    2018-01-31

    Neuroimaging studies suggest that the increment of the cognitive load associated with a specific task may induce the recruitment of a more bilateral brain network. In most studies, however, task demand has been manipulated in a static and pre-specified way, regardless of individual cognitive resources. Here we implemented a new paradigm based on a pre-experimental assessment to set up subject-specific levels of task demand and applied tDCS (transcranial direct current stimulation) to assess each hemisphere involvement in task performance. 24 young participants performed a digit span backward (DSB, complex cognitive function) and a paced finger tapping task (pFT, basic motor function) at 3 levels of subject-specific task demand ("low" 5/5 correct answers, "medium" 3/5, "high" 1/5). Anodal tDCS (20min, 1.5mA) was delivered through a target electrode (5 × 5cm) positioned to stimulate both the inferior frontal gyrus and the primary motor area over left and right hemisphere and in sham condition in three different days. A 3 (left, right, sham) × 3 (low, medium, high) mixed-model with random intercept for subjects was run with R software. As expected, in both tasks accuracy decreased with the increment of subject-specific task demand. Moreover, a significant interaction between type of stimulation and subject-specific task demand was found for the reaction times recorded during the DSB and for the accuracy in the pFT: in the most demanding conditions, right anodal tDCS significantly interfered with behavioural performance. Our results suggest that hemispheric lateralization is modulated by the subject-specific level of task demand and this modulation is not task-specific. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  18. Cognitive Task Analysis of the Battalion Level Visualization Process

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Leedom, Dennis K; McElroy, William; Shadrick, Scott B; Lickteig, Carl; Pokorny, Robet A; Haynes, Jacqueline A; Bell, James

    2007-01-01

    ... position or as a battalion Operations Officer or Executive Officer. Bases on findings from the cognitive task analysis, 11 skill areas were identified as potential focal points for future training development...

  19. Conservatism and liberalism predict performance in two nonideological cognitive tasks.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bernabel, Rodolpho Talaisys; Oliveira, Amâncio

    2017-01-01

    Intuitive thinking would argue that political or ideological orientation does not correlate with nonpolitical decisions, and certainly not with nonideological cognitive tasks. However, that is what happens in some cases. Previous neuropolitics studies have found that liberals are more adept at dealing with novel information than conservatives. This finding suggests that conservatives and liberals possess different cognitive skills. For the purposes of this article, two studies were executed to test whether this difference remained in alternative environmental settings. To this end, two novel cognitive tasks were designed in which one type of ideology or another was privileged according to the cognitive environment created by the tasks. Experimental findings indicate that liberals committed fewer errors than conservatives in one kind of cognitive environment, while conservatives scored higher in another.

  20. Respiratory sinus arrhythmia responses to cognitive tasks: effects of task factors and RSA indices.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Overbeek, Thérèse J M; van Boxtel, Anton; Westerink, Joyce H D M

    2014-05-01

    Many studies show that respiratory sinus arrhythmia (RSA) decreases while performing cognitive tasks. However, there is uncertainty about the role of contaminating factors such as physical activity and stress-inducing task variables. Different methods to quantify RSA may also contribute to variable results. In 83 healthy subjects, we studied RSA responses to a working memory task requiring varying levels of cognitive control and a perceptual attention task not requiring strong cognitive control. RSA responses were quantified in the time and frequency domain and were additionally corrected for differences in mean interbeat interval and respiration rate, resulting in eight different RSA indices. The two tasks were clearly differentiated by heart rate and facial EMG reference measures. Cognitive control induced inhibition of RSA whereas perceptual attention generally did not. However, the results show several differences between different RSA indices, emphasizing the importance of methodological variables. Age and sex did not influence the results. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  1. Cognitive Task Analysis Based Training for Cyber Situation Awareness

    OpenAIRE

    Huang , Zequn; Shen , Chien-Chung; Doshi , Sheetal; Thomas , Nimmi; Duong , Ha

    2015-01-01

    Part 1: Innovative Methods; International audience; Cyber attacks have been increasing significantly in both number and complexity, prompting the need for better training of cyber defense analysts. To conduct effective training for cyber situation awareness, it becomes essential to design realistic training scenarios. In this paper, we present a Cognitive Task Analysis based approach to address this training need. The technique of Cognitive Task Analysis is to capture and represent knowledge ...

  2. Nicotine-induced enhancement of attention in the five-choice serial reaction time task: the influence of task demands.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hahn, B; Shoaib, M; Stolerman, I P

    2002-07-01

    Beneficial effects of nicotine on cognitive processes including attention have potential therapeutic uses and have been proposed as incentives for tobacco smoking. To establish task conditions under which the effects of nicotine on attention are obtained reliably and to characterise such effects further. Rats were trained in a modified version of the five-choice serial reaction time task (5-CSRTT) to detect 1-s light stimuli with greater than 70% accuracy and fewer than 20% omission errors. Nicotine was tested under different task requirements by varying signal event rate, stimulus duration and stimulus predictability, and by introducing white-noise distractors. Nicotine (0.05-0.2 mg/kg, s.c.) repeatedly improved accuracy and reduced omission errors and reaction times, leading to increases in numbers of reinforcers earned. Anticipatory responding was increased. Parametric modifications intended to increase demands on sustained attention did not affect performance in a manner suggesting that this subtype of attention was being taxed, and the effects of nicotine were not more marked under such conditions. Shorter stimulus durations impaired performance, but this manipulation weakened the effect of nicotine on accuracy. In contrast, the presence of noise distractors facilitated the effects of nicotine to the extent that distractor-induced impairments were abolished by the drug. The 5-CSRTT can provide a sensitive rodent model for the attention-enhancing effects of nicotine. Changes made to the procedure may have increased its sensitivity to nicotine, particularly with respect to accuracy. There were indications that the effects of nicotine were largest on processes of selective attention or on disengaging attention from irrelevant events and shifting it to behaviourally significant stimuli.

  3. Cardiac responsiveness to attention-demanding tasks in socially maladaptive children

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Althaus, M; Aarnoudse, CC; Minderaa, RB; Mulder, Gysbertus; Mulder, Lambertus

    Cardiac responsiveness to attention-demanding tasks in socially maladaptive children A psychofysiological study of the cardiac adaptivity to attention-demanding reaction time tasks demonstrated that children with a lesser variant of the pervasive developmental disorder (DSM-IV: PDDNOS) exhibit less

  4. Cognitive Task Analysis of Prioritization in Air Traffic Control.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Redding, Richard E.; And Others

    A cognitive task analysis was performed to analyze the key cognitive components of the en route air traffic controllers' jobs. The goals were to ascertain expert mental models and decision-making strategies and to identify important differences in controller knowledge, skills, and mental models as a function of expertise. Four groups of…

  5. The effect of cognitive aging on implicit sequence learning and dual tasking

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jochen eVandenbossche

    2014-02-01

    Full Text Available We investigated the influence of attentional demands on sequence-specific learning by means of the serial reaction time (SRT task (Nissen & Bullemer, 1987 in young (age 18-25 and aged (age 55-75 adults. Participants had to respond as fast as possible to a stimulus presented in one of four horizontal locations by pressing a key corresponding to the spatial position of the stimulus. During the training phase sequential blocks were accompanied by (1 no secondary task (single, (2 a secondary tone counting task (dual tone, or (3 a secondary shape counting task (dual shape. Both secondary tasks were administered to investigate whether low and high interference tasks interact with implicit learning and age. The testing phase, under baseline single condition, was implemented to assess differences in sequence-specific learning between young and aged adults. Results indicate that (1 aged subjects show less sequence learning compared to young adults, (2 young participants show similar implicit learning effects under both single and dual task conditions when we account for explicit awareness, and (3 aged adults demonstrate reduced learning when the primary task is accompanied with a secondary task, even when explicit awareness is included as a covariate in the analysis. These findings point to implicit learning deficits under dual task conditions that can be related to cognitive aging, demonstrating the need for sufficient cognitive resources while performing a sequence learning task.

  6. Shift Work and Cognitive Flexibility: Decomposing Task Performance.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cheng, Philip; Tallent, Gabriel; Bender, Thomas John; Tran, Kieulinh Michelle; Drake, Christopher L

    2017-04-01

    Deficits in cognitive functioning associated with shift work are particularly relevant to occupational performance; however, few studies have examined how cognitive functioning is associated with specific components of shift work. This observational study examined how circadian phase, nocturnal sleepiness, and daytime insomnia in a sample of shift workers ( N = 30) were associated with cognitive flexibility during the night shift. Cognitive flexibility was measured using a computerized task-switching paradigm, which produces 2 indexes of flexibility: switch cost and set inhibition. Switch cost represents the additional cognitive effort required in switching to a different task and can impact performance when multitasking is involved. Set inhibition is the efficiency in returning to previously completed tasks and represents the degree of cognitive perseveration, which can lead to reduced accuracy. Circadian phase was measured via melatonin assays, nocturnal sleepiness was assessed using the Multiple Sleep Latency Test, and daytime insomnia was assessed using the Insomnia Severity Index. Results indicated that those with an earlier circadian phase, insomnia, and sleepiness exhibited reduced cognitive flexibility; however, specific components of cognitive flexibility were differentially associated with circadian phase, insomnia, and sleepiness. Individuals with an earlier circadian phase (thus more misaligned to the night shift) exhibited larger switch costs, which was also associated with reduced task efficiency. Shift workers with more daytime insomnia demonstrated difficulties with cognitive inhibition, whereas nocturnal sleepiness was associated with difficulties in reactivating previous tasks. Deficits in set inhibition were also related to reduced accuracy and increased perseverative errors. Together, this study indicates that task performance deficits in shift work are complex and are variably impacted by different mechanisms. Future research may examine

  7. Dealing with Prospective Memory Demands While Performing an Ongoing Task: Shared Processing, Increased On-Task Focus, or Both?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rummel, Jan; Smeekens, Bridget A.; Kane, Michael J.

    2017-01-01

    Prospective memory (PM) is the cognitive ability to remember to fulfill intended action plans at the appropriate future moment. Current theories assume that PM fulfillment draws on attentional processes. Accordingly, pending PM intentions interfere with other ongoing tasks to the extent to which both tasks rely on the same processes. How do people…

  8. Valence, arousal and cognitive control: A voluntary task switching study

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jelle eDemanet

    2011-11-01

    Full Text Available The present study focused on the interplay between arousal, valence and cognitive control. To this end, we investigated how arousal and valence associated with affective stimuli influenced cognitive flexibility when switching between tasks voluntarily. Three hypotheses were tested. First, a valence hypothesis that states that the positive valence of affective stimuli will facilitate both global and task-switching performance because of increased cognitive flexibility. Second, an arousal hypothesis that states that arousal, and not valence, will specifically impair task-switching performance by strengthening the previously executed task-set. Third, an attention hypothesis that states that both cognitive and emotional control ask for limited attentional resources, and predicts that arousal will impair both global and task-switching performance. The results showed that arousal affected task-switching but not global performance, possibly by phasic modulations of the noradrenergic system that reinforces the previously executed task. In addition, positive valence only affected global performance but not task-switching performance, possibly by phasic modulations of dopamine that stimulates the general ability to perform in a multitasking environment.

  9. Anticipating cognitive effort: roles of perceived error-likelihood and time demands.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dunn, Timothy L; Inzlicht, Michael; Risko, Evan F

    2017-11-13

    Why are some actions evaluated as effortful? In the present set of experiments we address this question by examining individuals' perception of effort when faced with a trade-off between two putative cognitive costs: how much time a task takes vs. how error-prone it is. Specifically, we were interested in whether individuals anticipate engaging in a small amount of hard work (i.e., low time requirement, but high error-likelihood) vs. a large amount of easy work (i.e., high time requirement, but low error-likelihood) as being more effortful. In between-subject designs, Experiments 1 through 3 demonstrated that individuals anticipate options that are high in perceived error-likelihood (yet less time consuming) as more effortful than options that are perceived to be more time consuming (yet low in error-likelihood). Further, when asked to evaluate which of the two tasks was (a) more effortful, (b) more error-prone, and (c) more time consuming, effort-based and error-based choices closely tracked one another, but this was not the case for time-based choices. Utilizing a within-subject design, Experiment 4 demonstrated overall similar pattern of judgments as Experiments 1 through 3. However, both judgments of error-likelihood and time demand similarly predicted effort judgments. Results are discussed within the context of extant accounts of cognitive control, with considerations of how error-likelihood and time demands may independently and conjunctively factor into judgments of cognitive effort.

  10. A Framework for the Cognitive Task Analysis in Systems Design

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Rasmussen, Jens

    he present rapid development of advanced information technology and its use for support of operators of complex technical systems are changing the content of task analysis towards the analysis of mental activities in decision making. Automation removes the humans from routine tasks, and operators...... are left with disturbance control and critical diagnostic tasks, for which computers are suitable for support, if it is possible to match the computer strategies and interface formats dynamically to the requirements of the current task by means of an analysis of the cognitive task....

  11. Cognitive Activities in Solving Mathematical Tasks: The Role of a Cognitive Obstacle

    Science.gov (United States)

    Antonijevic, Radovan

    2016-01-01

    In the process of learning mathematics, students practice various forms of thinking activities aimed to substantially contribute to the development of their different cognitive structures. In this paper, the subject matter is a "cognitive obstacle", a phenomenon that occurs in the procedures of solving mathematical tasks. Each task in…

  12. How task demands shape brain responses to visual food cues.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pohl, Tanja Maria; Tempelmann, Claus; Noesselt, Toemme

    2017-06-01

    Several previous imaging studies have aimed at identifying the neural basis of visual food cue processing in humans. However, there is little consistency of the functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) results across studies. Here, we tested the hypothesis that this variability across studies might - at least in part - be caused by the different tasks employed. In particular, we assessed directly the influence of task set on brain responses to food stimuli with fMRI using two tasks (colour vs. edibility judgement, between-subjects design). When participants judged colour, the left insula, the left inferior parietal lobule, occipital areas, the left orbitofrontal cortex and other frontal areas expressed enhanced fMRI responses to food relative to non-food pictures. However, when judging edibility, enhanced fMRI responses to food pictures were observed in the superior and middle frontal gyrus and in medial frontal areas including the pregenual anterior cingulate cortex and ventromedial prefrontal cortex. This pattern of results indicates that task sets can significantly alter the neural underpinnings of food cue processing. We propose that judging low-level visual stimulus characteristics - such as colour - triggers stimulus-related representations in the visual and even in gustatory cortex (insula), whereas discriminating abstract stimulus categories activates higher order representations in both the anterior cingulate and prefrontal cortex. Hum Brain Mapp 38:2897-2912, 2017. © 2017 Wiley Periodicals, Inc. © 2017 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  13. Oral methylphenidate normalizes cingulate activity in cocaine addiction during a salient cognitive task

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Goldstein, R.Z.; Woicik, P.A.; Maloney, T.; Tomasi, D.; Alia-Klein, N.; Shan, J.; Honorario, J.; Samaras, D.; Wang, R.; Telang, F.; Wang, G.-J.; Volkow, N.D.

    2010-01-01

    Anterior cingulate cortex (ACC) hypoactivations during cognitive demand are a hallmark deficit in drug addiction. Methylphenidate (MPH) normalizes cortical function, enhancing task salience and improving associated cognitive abilities, in other frontal lobe pathologies; however, in clinical trials, MPH did not improve treatment outcome in cocaine addiction. We hypothesized that oral MPH will attenuate ACC hypoactivations and improve associated performance during a salient cognitive task in individuals with cocaine-use disorders (CUD). In the current functional MRI study, we used a rewarded drug cue-reactivity task previously shown to be associated with hypoactivations in both major ACC subdivisions (implicated in default brain function) in CUD compared with healthy controls. The task was performed by 13 CUD and 14 matched healthy controls on 2 d: after ingesting a single dose of oral MPH (20 mg) or placebo (lactose) in a counterbalanced fashion. Results show that oral MPH increased responses to this salient cognitive task in both major ACC subdivisions (including the caudal-dorsal ACC and rostroventromedial ACC extending to the medial orbitofrontal cortex) in the CUD. These functional MRI results were associated with reduced errors of commission (a common impulsivity measure) and improved task accuracy, especially during the drug (vs. neutral) cue-reactivity condition in all subjects. The clinical application of such MPH-induced brain-behavior enhancements remains to be tested.

  14. Oral methylphenidate normalizes cingulate activity in cocaine addiction during a salient cognitive task

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Goldstein, R.Z.; Goldstein, R.Z.; Woicik, P.A.; Maloney, T.; Tomasi, D.; Alia-Klein, N.; Shan, J.; Honorario, J.; Samaras, d.; Wang, R.; Telang, F.; Wang, G.-J.; Volkow, N.D.

    2010-09-21

    Anterior cingulate cortex (ACC) hypoactivations during cognitive demand are a hallmark deficit in drug addiction. Methylphenidate (MPH) normalizes cortical function, enhancing task salience and improving associated cognitive abilities, in other frontal lobe pathologies; however, in clinical trials, MPH did not improve treatment outcome in cocaine addiction. We hypothesized that oral MPH will attenuate ACC hypoactivations and improve associated performance during a salient cognitive task in individuals with cocaine-use disorders (CUD). In the current functional MRI study, we used a rewarded drug cue-reactivity task previously shown to be associated with hypoactivations in both major ACC subdivisions (implicated in default brain function) in CUD compared with healthy controls. The task was performed by 13 CUD and 14 matched healthy controls on 2 d: after ingesting a single dose of oral MPH (20 mg) or placebo (lactose) in a counterbalanced fashion. Results show that oral MPH increased responses to this salient cognitive task in both major ACC subdivisions (including the caudal-dorsal ACC and rostroventromedial ACC extending to the medial orbitofrontal cortex) in the CUD. These functional MRI results were associated with reduced errors of commission (a common impulsivity measure) and improved task accuracy, especially during the drug (vs. neutral) cue-reactivity condition in all subjects. The clinical application of such MPH-induced brain-behavior enhancements remains to be tested.

  15. A Cognitive Task Analysis for Dental Hygiene.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cameron, Cheryl A.; Beemsterboer, Phyllis L.; Johnson, Lynn A.; Mislevy, Robert J.; Steinberg, Linda S.; Breyer, F. Jay

    2000-01-01

    As part of the development of a scoring algorithm for a simulation-based dental hygiene initial licensure examination, this effort conducted a task analysis of the dental hygiene domain. Broad classes of behaviors that distinguish along the dental hygiene expert-novice continuum were identified and applied to the design of nine paper-based cases…

  16. Cognitive costs of decision-making strategies: A resource demand decomposition analysis with a cognitive architecture.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fechner, Hanna B; Schooler, Lael J; Pachur, Thorsten

    2018-01-01

    Several theories of cognition distinguish between strategies that differ in the mental effort that their use requires. But how can the effort-or cognitive costs-associated with a strategy be conceptualized and measured? We propose an approach that decomposes the effort a strategy requires into the time costs associated with the demands for using specific cognitive resources. We refer to this approach as resource demand decomposition analysis (RDDA) and instantiate it in the cognitive architecture Adaptive Control of Thought-Rational (ACT-R). ACT-R provides the means to develop computer simulations of the strategies. These simulations take into account how strategies interact with quantitative implementations of cognitive resources and incorporate the possibility of parallel processing. Using this approach, we quantified, decomposed, and compared the time costs of two prominent strategies for decision making, take-the-best and tallying. Because take-the-best often ignores information and foregoes information integration, it has been considered simpler than strategies like tallying. However, in both ACT-R simulations and an empirical study we found that under increasing cognitive demands the response times (i.e., time costs) of take-the-best sometimes exceeded those of tallying. The RDDA suggested that this pattern is driven by greater requirements for working memory updates, memory retrievals, and the coordination of mental actions when using take-the-best compared to tallying. The results illustrate that assessing the relative simplicity of strategies requires consideration of the overall cognitive system in which the strategies are embedded. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  17. Differential effects of emotionally versus neutrally cued autobiographical memories on performance of a subsequent cognitive task: Effects of task difficulty

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kymberly eYoung

    2012-08-01

    Full Text Available Attention is a limited resource, and in order to improve processing of the attended information, competing processes must be suppressed. Although it is well established that an experimentally induced change in mood state comprises one type of competing process that can impair performance on a subsequent task, no study has investigated whether an emotionally valenced autobiographical memory (AM also can alter performance on a subsequent task. We therefore examined the effects of AM recall on cognitive performance. Healthy participants (n=20 per experiment recalled AMs in response to positive, negative, and neutral cue words. Following each AM participants completed a simple perceptual task (Experiment 1 or solved moderately difficult subtraction problems (Experiment 2. In Experiment 1 participants performed less accurately following exposure to positive or negative versus neutral cue words (ps<0.001, and also were less accurate following negative versus positive cue words (p<0.001. In Experiment 2, in contrast, no difference in accuracy or response times reached statistical significance. Performance accuracy even trended towards being higher following exposure to negative versus neutral cue words (p=0.08. The results of Experiment 1 suggested that recalling emotionally salient AMs reduces the attention directed toward a simple continuous performance task administered immediately following the AM task, conceivably due to persistent contemplation of the AM. The negative results of Experiment 2 suggested that the effect of AMs on attention was attenuated, however, by increasing the difficulty of the subsequent task. Our results have implications for patients with MDD, as performing cognitively demanding tasks may allow them to attenuate the impairing effects of negative rumination on cognition.

  18. Respiratory sinus arrhythmia responses to cognitive tasks : effects of task factors and RSA indices

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Overbeek, T.; Boxtel, van Anton; Westerink, J.H.D.M.

    2014-01-01

    Many studies show that respiratory sinus arrhythmia (RSA) decreases while performing cognitive tasks. However, there is uncertainty about the role of contaminating factors such as physical activity and stress-inducing task variables. Different methods to quantify RSA may also contribute to variable

  19. Respiratory sinus arrhythmia responses to cognitive tasks: Effects of task factors and RSA indices

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Overbeek, T.J.M.; van Boxtel, A.; Westerink, J.H.D.M.

    2014-01-01

    Many studies show that respiratory sinus arrhythmia (RSA) decreases while performing cognitive tasks. However, there is uncertainty about the role of contaminating factors such as physical activity and stress-inducing task variables. Different methods to quantify RSA may also contribute to variable

  20. The Effect of Visualisation on a Cognitively Demanding Task

    OpenAIRE

    Mahzoon, Alireza

    2015-01-01

    Nowadays, it is more common to see simple interfaces rather than working with the interfaces which look complex. The problem that most students and experts face with when evaluating an interface is mixing up the meaning of usability and complexity. The point is that some of these complex interfaces fulfill the requirements for the definition of usability, ISO 9241 (Bevan, 2001) and usefulness (Nielsen, 2012). In the experiments in what follows, visualization might help the subjects to have a ...

  1. Cognitive task demands modulate the sensitivity of the human cochlea

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    David W Smith

    2012-02-01

    Full Text Available Recent studies lead to the conclusion that focused attention, through the activity of corticofugal and medial olivocochlear efferent pathways, modulates activity at the most peripheral aspects of the auditory system within the cochlea. In two experiments we investigated the effects of different intermodal attention manipulations on the response of outer hair cells (OHCs, and the control exerted by the medial olivocochlear (MOC efferent system. The effect of the MOCs on OHC activity was characterized by measuring the amplitude and rapid adaptation time course of distortion product otoacoustic emissions (DPOAEs. In the first, DPOAE recordings were compared while participants were reading a book and counting the occurrence of the letter a (auditory ignoring and while counting the either short- or long-duration eliciting tones (auditory attending. In the second, DPOAEs were recorded while subjects watched muted movies with subtitles (auditory ignoring/visual distraction and were compared with DPOAEs recorded while subjects counted the same tones (auditory attending as in experiment 1. In both experiments 1 and 2, the absolute level of the averaged DPOAEs recorded during the auditory-ignoring condition was statistically higher than that recorded in the auditory-attending condition. Efferent-induced rapid adaptation was evident in all DPOAE contours, under all attention conditions, suggesting that two medial efferent processes act independently to determine rapid adaptation, which is unaffected by attention, and the overall DPOAE level, which is significantly affected by changes in the focus of attention.

  2. Children's Sleep, Sleepiness, and Performance on Cognitive Tasks.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Buckhalt, Joseph A

    2011-01-01

    While causal connections between sleep deprivation and attention, learning, and memory have been well established in adults, much less research has been done with children. Relations between the amount and quality of sleep and daytime sleepiness have been found for a number of cognitive and academic tasks in several groups of children. These relations have been found for children who have sleep disorders, for children with disorders involving cognitive impairment, and for typically developing children with no known disorders. The research is reviewed here with a focus on the types of cognitive and academic tasks that have been related to insufficient sleep. A series of studies is described that relates sleep parameters to the Woodcock-Johnson® III Tests of Cognitive Abilities and other, similar measures. Implications for educators and psychologists who work with children are discussed.

  3. U.S. Army Physical Demands Study: Reliability of Simulations of Physically Demanding Tasks Performed by Combat Arms Soldiers.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Foulis, Stephen A; Redmond, Jan E; Frykman, Peter N; Warr, Bradley J; Zambraski, Edward J; Sharp, Marilyn A

    2017-12-01

    Foulis, SA, Redmond, JE, Frykman, PN, Warr, BJ, Zambraski, EJ, and Sharp, MA. U.S. Army physical demands study: reliability of simulations of physically demanding tasks performed by combat arms soldiers. J Strength Cond Res 31(12): 3245-3252, 2017-Recently, the U.S. Army has mandated that soldiers must successfully complete the physically demanding tasks of their job to graduate from their Initial Military Training. Evaluating individual soldiers in the field is difficult; however, simulations of these tasks may aid in the assessment of soldiers' abilities. The purpose of this study was to determine the reliability of simulated physical soldiering tasks relevant to combat arms soldiers. Three cohorts of ∼50 soldiers repeated a subset of 8 simulated tasks 4 times over 2 weeks. Simulations included: sandbag carry, casualty drag, and casualty evacuation from a vehicle turret, move under direct fire, stow ammunition on a tank, load the main gun of a tank, transferring ammunition with a field artillery supply vehicle, and a 4-mile foot march. Reliability was assessed using intraclass correlation coefficients (ICCs), standard errors of measurement (SEMs), and 95% limits of agreement. Performance of the casualty drag and foot march did not improve across trials (p > 0.05), whereas improvements, suggestive of learning effects, were observed on the remaining 6 tasks (p ≤ 0.05). The ICCs ranged from 0.76 to 0.96, and the SEMs ranged from 3 to 16% of the mean. These 8 simulated tasks show high reliability. Given proper practice, they are suitable for evaluating the ability of Combat Arms Soldiers to complete the physical requirements of their jobs.

  4. Children's Sleep, Sleepiness, and Performance on Cognitive Tasks

    OpenAIRE

    Buckhalt, Joseph A.

    2011-01-01

    While causal connections between sleep deprivation and attention, learning, and memory have been well established in adults, much less research has been done with children. Relations between the amount and quality of sleep and daytime sleepiness have been found for a number of cognitive and academic tasks in several groups of children. These relations have been found for children who have sleep disorders, for children with disorders involving cognitive impairment, and for typically developing...

  5. Training Attentional Control Improves Cognitive and Motor Task Performance.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ducrocq, Emmanuel; Wilson, Mark; Vine, Sam; Derakshan, Nazanin

    2016-10-01

    Attentional control is a necessary function for the regulation of goal-directed behavior. In three experiments we investigated whether training inhibitory control using a visual search task could improve task-specific measures of attentional control and performance. In Experiment 1 results revealed that training elicited a near-transfer effect, improving performance on a cognitive (antisaccade) task assessing inhibitory control. In Experiment 2 an initial far-transfer effect of training was observed on an index of attentional control validated for tennis. The principal aim of Experiment 3 was to expand on these findings by assessing objective gaze measures of inhibitory control during the performance of a tennis task. Training improved inhibitory control and performance when pressure was elevated, confirming the mechanisms by which cognitive anxiety impacts performance. These results suggest that attentional control training can improve inhibition and reduce taskspecific distractibility with promise of transfer to more efficient sporting performance in competitive contexts.

  6. Males and females differ in brain activation during cognitive tasks.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bell, Emily C; Willson, Morgan C; Wilman, Alan H; Dave, Sanjay; Silverstone, Peter H

    2006-04-01

    To examine the effect of gender on regional brain activity, we utilized functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) during a motor task and three cognitive tasks; a word generation task, a spatial attention task, and a working memory task in healthy male (n = 23) and female (n = 10) volunteers. Functional data were examined for group differences both in the number of pixels activated, and the blood-oxygen-level-dependent (BOLD) magnitude during each task. Males had a significantly greater mean activation than females in the working memory task with a greater number of pixels being activated in the right superior parietal gyrus and right inferior occipital gyrus, and a greater BOLD magnitude occurring in the left inferior parietal lobe. However, despite these fMRI changes, there were no significant differences between males and females on cognitive performance of the task. In contrast, in the spatial attention task, men performed better at this task than women, but there were no significant functional differences between the two groups. In the word generation task, there were no external measures of performance, but in the functional measurements, males had a significantly greater mean activation than females, where males had a significantly greater BOLD signal magnitude in the left and right dorsolateral prefrontal cortex, the right inferior parietal lobe, and the cingulate. In neither of the motor tasks (right or left hand) did males and females perform differently. Our fMRI findings during the motor tasks were a greater mean BOLD signal magnitude in males in the right hand motor task, compared to females where males had an increased BOLD signal magnitude in the right inferior parietal gyrus and in the left inferior frontal gyrus. In conclusion, these results demonstrate differential patterns of activation in males and females during a variety of cognitive tasks, even though performance in these tasks may not vary, and also that variability in performance may not

  7. A framework for cognitive task analysis in systems design

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Rasmussen, J.

    1985-08-01

    The present rapid development if advanced information technology and its use for support of operators of complex technical systems are changing the content of task analysis towards the analysis of mental activities in decision making. Automation removes the humans from routine tasks, and operators are left with disturbance control and critical diagnostic tasks, for which computers are suitable for support, if it is possible to match the computer strategies and interface formats dynamically to the requirements of the current task by means of an analysis of the cognitive task. Such a cognitive task analysis will not aim at a description of the information processes suited for particular control situations. It will rather aim at an analysis in order to identify the requirements to be considered along various dimensions of the decision tasks, in order to give the user - i.e. a decision maker - the freedom to adapt his performance to system requirements in a way which matches his process resources and subjective preferences. To serve this purpose, a number of analyses at various levels are needed to relate the control requirements of the system to the information processes and to the processing resources offered by computers and humans. The paper discusses the cognitive task analysis in terms of the following domains: The problem domain, which is a representation of the functional properties of the system giving a consistent framework for identification of the control requirements of the system; the decision sequences required for typical situations; the mental strategies and heuristics which are effective and acceptable for the different decision functions; and the cognitive control mechanisms used, depending upon the level of skill which can/will be applied. Finally, the end-users' criteria for choice of mental strategies in the actual situation are considered, and the need for development of criteria for judging the ultimate user acceptance of computer support is

  8. Isolating Discriminant Neural Activity in the Presence of Eye Movements and Concurrent Task Demands

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jon Touryan

    2017-07-01

    Full Text Available A growing number of studies use the combination of eye-tracking and electroencephalographic (EEG measures to explore the neural processes that underlie visual perception. In these studies, fixation-related potentials (FRPs are commonly used to quantify early and late stages of visual processing that follow the onset of each fixation. However, FRPs reflect a mixture of bottom-up (sensory-driven and top-down (goal-directed processes, in addition to eye movement artifacts and unrelated neural activity. At present there is little consensus on how to separate this evoked response into its constituent elements. In this study we sought to isolate the neural sources of target detection in the presence of eye movements and over a range of concurrent task demands. Here, participants were asked to identify visual targets (Ts amongst a grid of distractor stimuli (Ls, while simultaneously performing an auditory N-back task. To identify the discriminant activity, we used independent components analysis (ICA for the separation of EEG into neural and non-neural sources. We then further separated the neural sources, using a modified measure-projection approach, into six regions of interest (ROIs: occipital, fusiform, temporal, parietal, cingulate, and frontal cortices. Using activity from these ROIs, we identified target from non-target fixations in all participants at a level similar to other state-of-the-art classification techniques. Importantly, we isolated the time course and spectral features of this discriminant activity in each ROI. In addition, we were able to quantify the effect of cognitive load on both fixation-locked potential and classification performance across regions. Together, our results show the utility of a measure-projection approach for separating task-relevant neural activity into meaningful ROIs within more complex contexts that include eye movements.

  9. Effect of aging on performance, muscle activation and perceived stress during mentally demanding computer tasks

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Alkjaer, Tine; Pilegaard, Marianne; Bakke, Merete

    2005-01-01

    OBJECTIVES: This study examined the effects of age on performance, muscle activation, and perceived stress during computer tasks with different levels of mental demand. METHODS: Fifteen young and thirteen elderly women performed two computer tasks [color word test and reference task] with different...... levels of mental demand but similar physical demands. The performance (clicking frequency, percentage of correct answers, and response time for correct answers) and electromyography from the forearm, shoulder, and neck muscles were recorded. Visual analogue scales were used to measure the participants......' perception of the stress and difficulty related to the tasks. RESULTS: Performance decreased significantly in both groups during the color word test in comparison with performance on the reference task. However, the performance reduction was more pronounced in the elderly group than in the young group...

  10. Game-based training of flexibility and attention improves task-switch performance: near and far transfer of cognitive training in an EEG study

    OpenAIRE

    Olfers, Kerwin J. F.; Band, Guido P. H.

    2017-01-01

    There is a demand for ways to enhance cognitive flexibility, as it can be a limiting factor for performance in daily life. Video game training has been linked to advantages in cognitive functioning, raising the question if training with video games can promote cognitive flexibility. In the current study, we investigated if game-based computerized cognitive training (GCCT) could enhance cognitive flexibility in a healthy young adult sample (N = 72), as measured by task-switch performance. Thre...

  11. Cognitive-motor dual-task ability of athletes with and without intellectual impairment.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Van Biesen, Debbie; Jacobs, Lore; McCulloch, Katina; Janssens, Luc; Vanlandewijck, Yves C

    2018-03-01

    Cognition is important in many sports, for example, making split-second-decisions under pressure, or memorising complex movement sequences. The dual-task (DT) paradigm is an ecologically valid approach for the assessment of cognitive function in conjunction with motor demands. This study aimed to determine the impact of impaired intelligence on DT performance. The motor task required balancing on one leg on a beam, and the cognitive task was a multiple-object-tracking (MOT) task assessing dynamic visual-search capacity. The sample included 206 well-trained athletes with and without intellectual impairment (II), matched for sport, age and training volume (140 males, 66 females, M age = 23.2 ± 4.1 years, M training experience = 12.3 ± 5.7 years). In the single-task condition, II-athletes showed reduced balance control (F = 55.9, P balance and the MOT task between both groups. The DT costs were significantly larger for the II-athletes (-8.28% versus -1.34% for MOT and -33.13% versus -12.89% for balance). The assessment of MOT in a DT paradigm provided insight in how impaired intelligence constrains the ability of II-athletes to successfully perform at the highest levels in the complex and dynamical sport-environment.

  12. Cognitive conflict increases processing of negative, task-irrelevant stimuli.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ligeza, Tomasz S; Wyczesany, Miroslaw

    2017-10-01

    The detection of cognitive conflict is thought to trigger adjustments in executive control. It has been recently shown that cognitive conflict increases processing of stimuli that are relevant to the ongoing task and that these modulations are exerted by the dorsolateral prefrontal cortex (DLPFC). However, it is still unclear whether such control influences are unspecific and might also affect the processing of task-irrelevant stimuli. The aim of the study was to examine if cognitive conflict affects processing of neutral and negative, task-irrelevant pictures. Participants responded to congruent (non-conflict) or to incongruent (conflict-eliciting) trials of a modified flanker task. Each response was followed by a presentation of a neutral or negative picture. The late positive potential (LPP) in response to picture presentation was used to assess the level of picture processing after conflict vs non-conflict trials. Connectivity between the DLPFC and attentional and perceptual areas during picture presentation was analysed to check if the DLPFC might be a source of these modulations. ERP results showed an effect of cognitive conflict only on processing of negative pictures: LPP in response to negative pictures was increased after conflict trials, whereas LPP in response to neutral pictures remained unchanged. Cortical connectivity analysis showed that conflict trials intensified information flow from the DLPFC towards attentional and perceptual regions. Results suggest that cognitive conflict increases processing of task-irrelevant stimuli; however, they must display high biological salience. Increase in cognitive control exerted by the DLPFC over attentional and perceptual regions is a probable mechanism of the effect. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  13. Measuring cognitive load: performance, mental effort and simulation task complexity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Haji, Faizal A; Rojas, David; Childs, Ruth; de Ribaupierre, Sandrine; Dubrowski, Adam

    2015-08-01

    Interest in applying cognitive load theory in health care simulation is growing. This line of inquiry requires measures that are sensitive to changes in cognitive load arising from different instructional designs. Recently, mental effort ratings and secondary task performance have shown promise as measures of cognitive load in health care simulation. We investigate the sensitivity of these measures to predicted differences in intrinsic load arising from variations in task complexity and learner expertise during simulation-based surgical skills training. We randomly assigned 28 novice medical students to simulation training on a simple or complex surgical knot-tying task. Participants completed 13 practice trials, interspersed with computer-based video instruction. On trials 1, 5, 9 and 13, knot-tying performance was assessed using time and movement efficiency measures, and cognitive load was assessed using subjective rating of mental effort (SRME) and simple reaction time (SRT) on a vibrotactile stimulus-monitoring secondary task. Significant improvements in knot-tying performance (F(1.04,24.95)  = 41.1, p cognitive load (F(2.3,58.5)  = 57.7, p load among novices engaged in simulation-based learning. These measures can be used to track cognitive load during skills training. Mental effort ratings are also sensitive to small differences in intrinsic load arising from variations in the physical complexity of a simulation task. The complementary nature of these subjective and objective measures suggests their combined use is advantageous in simulation instructional design research. © 2015 John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  14. Distracted in a Demanding Task : A Classification Study with Artificial Neural Networks

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Huijser, Stefan; Taatgen, Niels; van Vugt, Marieke; Verheij, Bart; Wiering, Marco

    An important issue in cognitive science research is to know what your subjects are thinking about. In this paper, we trained multiple artificial Neural Network (ANN) classifiers to predict whether subjects’ thoughts were focused on the task (i.e., on-task) or if they were distracted (i.e.,

  15. Dissociable effects of game elements on motivation and cognition in a task-switching training in middle childhood.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dörrenbächer, Sandra; Müller, Philipp M; Tröger, Johannes; Kray, Jutta

    2014-01-01

    Although motivational reinforcers are often used to enhance the attractiveness of trainings of cognitive control in children, little is known about how such motivational manipulations of the setting contribute to separate gains in motivation and cognitive-control performance. Here we provide a framework for systematically investigating the impact of a motivational video-game setting on the training motivation, the task performance, and the transfer success in a task-switching training in middle-aged children (8-11 years of age). We manipulated both the type of training (low-demanding/single-task training vs. high-demanding/task-switching training) as well as the motivational setting (low-motivational/without video-game elements vs. high-motivational/with video-game elements) separately from another. The results indicated that the addition of game elements to a training setting enhanced the intrinsic interest in task practice, independently of the cognitive demands placed by the training type. In the task-switching group, the high-motivational training setting led to an additional enhancement of task and switching performance during the training phase right from the outset. These motivation-induced benefits projected onto the switching performance in a switching situation different from the trained one (near-transfer measurement). However, in structurally dissimilar cognitive tasks (far-transfer measurement), the motivational gains only transferred to the response dynamics (speed of processing). Hence, the motivational setting clearly had a positive impact on the training motivation and on the paradigm-specific task-switching abilities; it did not, however, consistently generalize on broad cognitive processes. These findings shed new light on the conflation of motivation and cognition in childhood and may help to refine guidelines for designing adequate training interventions.

  16. Dissociable effects of game elements on motivation and cognition in a task-switching training in middle childhood

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sandra eDörrenbächer

    2014-11-01

    Full Text Available Although motivational reinforcers are often used to enhance the attractiveness of trainings of cognitive control in children, little is known about how such motivational manipulations of the setting contribute to separate gains in motivation and cognitive-control performance. Here we provide a framework for systematically investigating the impact of a motivational video-game setting on the training motivation, the task performance, and the transfer success in a task-switching training in middle-aged children (8 to 11 years of age. We manipulated both the type of training (low-demanding/ single-task training vs high-demanding/ task-switching training as well as the motivational setting (low-motivational/ without video-game elements vs high-motivational/ with video-game elements separately from another. The results indicated that the addition of game elements to a training setting enhanced the intrinsic interest in task practice, independently of the cognitive demands placed by the training type. In the task-switching group, the high-motivational training setting led to an additional enhancement of task and switching performance during the training phase right from the outset. These motivation-induced benefits projected onto the switching performance in a switching situation different from the trained one (near-transfer measurement. However, in structurally dissimilar cognitive tasks (far-transfer measurement, the motivational gains only transferred to the response dynamics (speed of processing. Hence, the motivational setting clearly had a positive impact on the training motivation and on the paradigm-specific task-switching abilities; it did not, however, consistently generalize on broad cognitive processes. These findings shed new light on the conflation of motivation and cognition in childhood and may help to refine guidelines for designing adequate training interventions.

  17. Dissociable effects of game elements on motivation and cognition in a task-switching training in middle childhood

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dörrenbächer, Sandra; Müller, Philipp M.; Tröger, Johannes; Kray, Jutta

    2014-01-01

    Although motivational reinforcers are often used to enhance the attractiveness of trainings of cognitive control in children, little is known about how such motivational manipulations of the setting contribute to separate gains in motivation and cognitive-control performance. Here we provide a framework for systematically investigating the impact of a motivational video-game setting on the training motivation, the task performance, and the transfer success in a task-switching training in middle-aged children (8–11 years of age). We manipulated both the type of training (low-demanding/single-task training vs. high-demanding/task-switching training) as well as the motivational setting (low-motivational/without video-game elements vs. high-motivational/with video-game elements) separately from another. The results indicated that the addition of game elements to a training setting enhanced the intrinsic interest in task practice, independently of the cognitive demands placed by the training type. In the task-switching group, the high-motivational training setting led to an additional enhancement of task and switching performance during the training phase right from the outset. These motivation-induced benefits projected onto the switching performance in a switching situation different from the trained one (near-transfer measurement). However, in structurally dissimilar cognitive tasks (far-transfer measurement), the motivational gains only transferred to the response dynamics (speed of processing). Hence, the motivational setting clearly had a positive impact on the training motivation and on the paradigm-specific task-switching abilities; it did not, however, consistently generalize on broad cognitive processes. These findings shed new light on the conflation of motivation and cognition in childhood and may help to refine guidelines for designing adequate training interventions. PMID:25431564

  18. Partial Derivative Games in Thermodynamics: A Cognitive Task Analysis

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kustusch, Mary Bridget; Roundy, David; Dray, Tevian; Manogue, Corinne A.

    2014-01-01

    Several studies in recent years have demonstrated that upper-division students struggle with the mathematics of thermodynamics. This paper presents a task analysis based on several expert attempts to solve a challenging mathematics problem in thermodynamics. The purpose of this paper is twofold. First, we highlight the importance of cognitive task…

  19. Improving Sensitivity to Detect Mild Cognitive Impairment: Cognitive Load Dual-Task Gait Speed Assessment.

    Science.gov (United States)

    MacAulay, Rebecca K; Wagner, Mark T; Szeles, Dana; Milano, Nicholas J

    2017-07-01

    Longitudinal research indicates that cognitive load dual-task gait assessment is predictive of cognitive decline and thus might provide a sensitive measure to screen for mild cognitive impairment (MCI). However, research among older adults being clinically evaluated for cognitive concerns, a defining feature of MCI, is lacking. The present study investigated the effect of performing a cognitive task on normal walking speed in patients presenting to a memory clinic with cognitive complaints. Sixty-one patients with a mean age of 68 years underwent comprehensive neuropsychological testing, clinical interview, and gait speed (simple- and dual-task conditions) assessments. Thirty-four of the 61 patients met criteria for MCI. Repeated measure analyses of covariance revealed that greater age and MCI both significantly associated with slower gait speed, pscognitive dual task within a clinically representative population. Cognitive load dual-task gait assessment may provide a cost efficient and sensitive measure to detect older adults at high risk of a dementia disorder. (JINS, 2017, 23, 493-501).

  20. Increased cognitive control after task conflict? Investigating the N-3 effect in task switching.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schuch, Stefanie; Grange, James A

    2018-05-25

    Task inhibition is considered to facilitate switching to a new task and is assumed to decay slowly over time. Hence, more persisting inhibition needs to be overcome when returning to a task after one intermediary trial (ABA task sequence) than when returning after two or more intermediary trials (CBA task sequence). Schuch and Grange (J Exp Psychol Learn Mem Cogn 41:760-767, 2015) put forward the hypothesis that there is higher task conflict in ABA than CBA sequences, leading to increased cognitive control in the subsequent trial. They provided evidence that performance is better in trials following ABA than following CBA task sequences. Here, this effect of the previous task sequence ("N-3 effect") is further investigated by varying the cue-stimulus interval (CSI), allowing for short (100 ms) or long (900 ms) preparation time for the upcoming task. If increased cognitive control after ABA involves a better preparation for the upcoming task, the N-3 effect should be larger with long than short CSI. The results clearly show that this is not the case. In Experiment 1, the N-3 effect was smaller with long than short CSI; in Experiment 2, the N-3 effect was not affected by CSI. Diffusion model analysis confirmed previous results in the literature (regarding the effect of CSI and of the ABA-CBA difference); however, the N-3 effect was not unequivocally associated with any of the diffusion model parameters. In exploratory analysis, we also tested the alternative hypothesis that the N-3 effect involves more effective task shielding, which would be reflected in reduced congruency effects in trials following ABA, relative to trials following CBA; congruency effects did not differ between these conditions. Taken together, we can rule out two potential explanations of the N-3 effect: Neither is this effect due to enhanced task preparation, nor to more effective task shielding.

  1. Using cognitive architectures to study issues in team cognition in a complex task environment

    Science.gov (United States)

    Smart, Paul R.; Sycara, Katia; Tang, Yuqing

    2014-05-01

    Cognitive social simulation is a computer simulation technique that aims to improve our understanding of the dynamics of socially-situated and socially-distributed cognition. This makes cognitive social simulation techniques particularly appealing as a means to undertake experiments into team cognition. The current paper reports on the results of an ongoing effort to develop a cognitive social simulation capability that can be used to undertake studies into team cognition using the ACT-R cognitive architecture. This capability is intended to support simulation experiments using a team-based problem solving task, which has been used to explore the effect of different organizational environments on collective problem solving performance. The functionality of the ACT-R-based cognitive social simulation capability is presented and a number of areas of future development work are outlined. The paper also describes the motivation for adopting cognitive architectures in the context of social simulation experiments and presents a number of research areas where cognitive social simulation may be useful in developing a better understanding of the dynamics of team cognition. These include the use of cognitive social simulation to study the role of cognitive processes in determining aspects of communicative behavior, as well as the impact of communicative behavior on the shaping of task-relevant cognitive processes (e.g., the social shaping of individual and collective memory as a result of communicative exchanges). We suggest that the ability to perform cognitive social simulation experiments in these areas will help to elucidate some of the complex interactions that exist between cognitive, social, technological and informational factors in the context of team-based problem-solving activities.

  2. The effect of task demand and incentive on neurophysiological and cardiovascular markers of effort.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fairclough, Stephen H; Ewing, Kate

    2017-09-01

    According to motivational intensity theory, effort is proportional to the level of task demand provided that success is possible and successful performance is deemed worthwhile. The current study represents a simultaneous manipulation of demand (working memory load) and success importance (financial incentive) to investigate neurophysiological (EEG) and cardiovascular measures of effort. A 2×2 repeated-measures study was conducted where 18 participants performed a n-back task under three conditions of demand: easy (1-back), hard (4-back) and very hard (7-back). In addition, participants performed these tasks in the presence of performance-contingent financial incentive or in a no-incentive (pilot trial) condition. Three bands of EEG activity were quantified: theta (4-7Hz), lower-alpha (7.5-10Hz) and upper-alpha (10.5-13Hz). Fronto-medial activity in the theta band and activity in the upper-alpha band at frontal, central and parietal sites were sensitive to demand and indicated greatest effort when the task was challenging and success was possible. Mean systolic blood pressure and activity in the lower-alpha band at parietal sites were also sensitive to demand but also increased in the incentive condition across all levels of task demand. The results of the study largely support the predictions of motivational intensity using neurophysiological markers of effort. Copyright © 2017. Published by Elsevier B.V.

  3. Trial-to-trial reoptimization of motor behavior due to changes in task demands is limited.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Orban de Xivry J-J

    Full Text Available Each task requires a specific motor behavior that is tuned to task demands. For instance, writing requires a lot of accuracy while clapping does not. It is known that the brain adjusts the motor behavior to different task demands as predicted by optimal control theory. In this study, the mechanism of this reoptimization process is investigated by varying the accuracy demands of a reaching task. In this task, the width of the reaching target (0.5 or 8 cm was varied either on a trial-to-trial basis (random schedule or in blocks (blocked schedule. On some trials, the hand of the subjects was clamped to a rectilinear trajectory that ended 2 cm on the left or right of the target center. The rejection of this perturbation largely varied with target width in the blocked schedule but not in the random schedule. That is, subjects exhibited different motor behavior in the different schedules despite identical accuracy demands. Therefore, while reoptimization has been considered immediate and automatic, the differences in motor behavior observed across schedules suggest that the reoptimization of the motor behavior is neither happening on a trial-by-trial basis nor obligatory. The absence of trial-to-trial mechanisms, the inability of the brain to adapt to two conflicting task demands and the existence of a switching cost are discussed as possible sources of the non-optimality of motor behavior during the random schedule.

  4. Attentional Demand of a Virtual Reality-Based Reaching Task in Nondisabled Older Adults

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chen, Yi-An; Chung, Yu-Chen; Proffitt, Rachel; Wade, Eric; Winstein, Carolee

    2015-01-01

    Attention during exercise is known to affect performance; however, the attentional demand inherent to virtual reality (VR)-based exercise is not well understood. We used a dual-task paradigm to compare the attentional demands of VR-based and non-VR-based (conventional, real-world) exercise: 22 non-disabled older adults performed a primary reaching task to virtual and real targets in a counterbalanced block order while verbally responding to an unanticipated auditory tone in one third of the trials. The attentional demand of the primary reaching task was inferred from the voice response time (VRT) to the auditory tone. Participants' engagement level and task experience were also obtained using questionnaires. The virtual target condition was more attention demanding (significantly longer VRT) than the real target condition. Secondary analyses revealed a significant interaction between engagement level and target condition on attentional demand. For participants who were highly engaged, attentional demand was high and independent of target condition. However, for those who were less engaged, attentional demand was low and depended on target condition (i.e., virtual > real). These findings add important knowledge to the growing body of research pertaining to the development and application of technology-enhanced exercise for elders and for rehabilitation purposes. PMID:27004233

  5. Attentional Demand of a Virtual Reality-Based Reaching Task in Nondisabled Older Adults.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chen, Yi-An; Chung, Yu-Chen; Proffitt, Rachel; Wade, Eric; Winstein, Carolee

    2015-12-01

    Attention during exercise is known to affect performance; however, the attentional demand inherent to virtual reality (VR)-based exercise is not well understood. We used a dual-task paradigm to compare the attentional demands of VR-based and non-VR-based (conventional, real-world) exercise: 22 non-disabled older adults performed a primary reaching task to virtual and real targets in a counterbalanced block order while verbally responding to an unanticipated auditory tone in one third of the trials. The attentional demand of the primary reaching task was inferred from the voice response time (VRT) to the auditory tone. Participants' engagement level and task experience were also obtained using questionnaires. The virtual target condition was more attention demanding (significantly longer VRT) than the real target condition. Secondary analyses revealed a significant interaction between engagement level and target condition on attentional demand. For participants who were highly engaged, attentional demand was high and independent of target condition. However, for those who were less engaged, attentional demand was low and depended on target condition (i.e., virtual > real). These findings add important knowledge to the growing body of research pertaining to the development and application of technology-enhanced exercise for elders and for rehabilitation purposes.

  6. Catastrophe models for cognitive workload and fatigue in N-back tasks.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Guastello, Stephen J; Reiter, Katherine; Malon, Matthew; Timm, Paul; Shircel, Anton; Shaline, James

    2015-04-01

    N-back tasks place a heavy load on working memory, and thus make good candidates for studying cognitive workload and fatigue (CWLF). This study extended previous work on CWLF which separated the two phenomena with two cusp catastrophe models. Participants were 113 undergraduates who completed 2-back and 3-back tasks with both auditory and visual stimuli simultaneously. Task data were complemented by several measures hypothesized to be related to cognitive elasticity and compensatory abilities and the NASA TLX ratings of subjective workload. The adjusted R2 was .980 for the workload model, which indicated a highly accurate prediction with six bifurcation (elasticity versus rigidity) effects: algebra flexibility, TLX performance, effort, and frustration; and psychosocial measures of inflexibility and monitoring. There were also two cognitive load effects (asymmetry): 2 vs. 3-back and TLX temporal demands. The adjusted R2 was .454 for the fatigue model, which contained two bifurcation variables indicating the amount of work done, and algebra flexibility as the compensatory ability variable. Both cusp models were stronger than the next best linear alternative model. The study makes an important step forward by uncovering an apparently complete model for workload, finding the role of subjective workload in the context of performance dynamics, and finding CWLF dynamics in yet another type of memory-intensive task. The results were also consistent with the developing notion that performance deficits induced by workload and deficits induced by fatigue result from the impact of the task on the workspace and executive functions of working memory respectively.

  7. Changes in regional cerebral blood flow during auditory cognitive tasks

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Ohyama, Masashi; Kitamura, Shin; Terashi, Akiro; Senda, Michio.

    1993-01-01

    In order to investigate the relation between auditory cognitive function and regional brain activation, we measured the changes in the regional cerebral blood flow (CBF) using positron emission tomography (PET) during the 'odd-ball' paradigm in ten normal healthy volunteers. The subjects underwent 3 tasks, twice for each, while the evoked potential was recorded. In these tasks, the auditory stimulus was a series of pure tones delivered every 1.5 sec binaurally at 75 dB from the earphones. Task A: the stimulus was a series of tones with 1000 Hz only, and the subject was instructed to only hear. Task B: the stimulus was a series of tones with 1000 Hz only, and the subject was instructed to push the button on detecting a tone. Task C: the stimulus was a series of pure tones delivered every 1.5 sec binaurally at 75 dB with a frequency of 1000 Hz (non-target) in 80% and 2000 Hz (target) in 20% at random, and the subject was instructed to push the button on detecting a target tone. The event related potential (P300) was observed in task C (Pz: 334.3±19.6 msec). At each task, the CBF was measured using PET with i.v. injection of 1.5 GBq of O-15 water. The changes in CBF associated with auditory cognition was evaluated by the difference between the CBF images in task C and B. Localized increase was observed in the anterior cingulate cortex (in all subjects), the bilateral associate auditory cortex, the prefrontal cortex and the parietal cortex. The latter three areas had a large individual variation in the location of foci. These results suggested the role of those cortical areas in auditory cognition. The anterior cingulate was most activated (15.0±2.24% of global CBF). This region was not activated in the condition of task B minus task A. The anterior cingulate is a part of Papez's circuit that is related to memory and other higher cortical function. These results suggested that this area may play an important role in cognition as well as in attention. (author)

  8. Influence of Cognitive Variables in the Iowa Gambling Task

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Marino D., Julián C.

    2010-07-01

    Full Text Available The objective of this work was to analyze the influence of cognitive and personality variables in the Decision Making (DM construct, evaluated by the Iowa Gambling Task (IGT. For this propose, a battery of neuropsychological tests was applied to 116 individuals of both genders between 18 and 35 years olds. The results showed that the IGT performance was not associated to the cognitive variables evaluated, only it has been found moderated relationship between working memory and DM. These outcomes suggest that DM seems to be an independent construct of the “cool” cognitive functions and could be influenced for the emotional or motivational aspects related to “hot” cognitive process. Finally, the DM process seems to be more associated to the ability to avoid punishment than the capacity of evaluate long term benefits.

  9. Modulation of the conflict monitoring intensity: the role of aversive reinforcement, cognitive demand, and trait-BIS.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Leue, Anja; Lange, Sebastian; Beauducel, André

    2012-06-01

    According to Botvinick's (2007) integrative account, conflict monitoring is aversive because individuals anticipate cognitive demand, whereas the revised reinforcement sensitivity theory (rRST) predicts that conflict processing is aversive because individuals anticipate aversive reinforcement of erroneous responses. Because these accounts give different reasons for the aversive aspects of conflict, we manipulated cognitive demand and the aversive reinforcement as a consequence of wrong choices in a go/no-go task. Thereby, we also aimed to investigate whether individual differences in conflict sensitivity (i.e., in trait anxiety, linked to high sensitivity of the behavioral inhibition system [trait-BIS]) represent the effects of aversive reinforcement and cognitive demand in conflict tasks. We expected that these manipulations would have effects on the frontal N2 component representing activity of the anterior cingulate cortex. Moreover, higher-trait-BIS individuals should be more sensitive than lower-trait-BIS individuals to aversive effects in conflict situations, resulting in a more negative frontal N2 for higher-trait-BIS individuals. In Study 1, with N = 104 students, and Study 2, with N = 47 students, aversive reinforcement was manipulated in three levels (within-subjects factor) and cognitive demand in two levels (between-subjects factor). The behavioral findings from the go/no-go task with noncounterbalanced reinforcement levels (Study 1) could be widely replicated in a task with counterbalanced reinforcement levels (Study 2). The frontal mean no-go N2 amplitude and the frontal no-go N2 dipole captured predicted reinforcement-related variations of conflict monitoring, indicating that the anticipation of aversive reinforcement induces variations in conflict monitoring intensity in frontal brain areas. The aversive nature of conflict was underlined by the more pronounced conflict monitoring in higher- than in lower-trait-BIS individuals.

  10. Relative effects of demand and control on task-related cardiovascular reactivity, task perceptions, performance accuracy, and mood.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Flynn, Niamh; James, Jack E

    2009-05-01

    The hypothesis that work control has beneficial effects on well-being is the basis of the widely applied, yet inconsistently supported, Job Demand Control (JDC) Model [Karasek, R.A., 1979. Job demands, job decision latitude and mental strain: Implications for job redesign. Adm. Sci. Q. 24, 285-308.; Karasek, R., Theorell, T., 1990. Healthy Work: Stress, Productivity, and the Reconstruction of Working Life. Basic Books, Oxford]. The model was tested in an experiment (N=60) using a cognitive stressor paradigm that sought to prevent confounding between demand and control. High-demand was found to be associated with deleterious effects on physiological, subjective, and performance outcomes. In contrast, few main effects were found for control. Evidence for the buffer interpretation of the JDC Model was limited to a significant demand-control interaction for performance accuracy, whereas substantial support was found for the strain interpretation of the model [van der Doef, M., Maes, S., 1998. The job demand-control(-support) model and physical health outcomes: A review of the strain and buffer hypotheses. Psychol. Health 13, 909-936., van der Doef, M., Maes, S., 1999. The Job Demand-Control(-Support) model and psychological well-being: A review of 20 years of empirical research. Work Stress 13, 87-114]. Manipulation checks revealed that objective control altered perceptions of control but not perceptions of demand. It is suggested that beneficial effects of work-related control are unlikely to occur in the absence of reductions in perceived demand. Thus, contrary to the propositions of Karasek and colleagues, demand and control do not appear to be independent factors.

  11. Estimating Demand and Cross-Price Elasticity for Very Low Nicotine Content (VLNC) Cigarettes Using a Simulated Demand Task.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tucker, Megan R; Laugesen, Murray; Grace, Randolph C

    2017-03-03

    Very Low Nicotine Content (VLNC) cigarettes might be useful as part of a tobacco control strategy, but relatively little is known about their acceptability as substitutes for regular cigarettes. We compared subjective effects and demand for regular cigarettes and Very Low Nicotine Content (VLNC) cigarettes, and estimated cross-price elasticity for VLNC cigarettes, using simulated demand tasks. 40 New Zealand smokers sampled a VLNC cigarette and completed Cigarette Purchase Tasks to indicate their demand for regular cigarettes and VLNC cigarettes at a range of prices, and a cross-price task indicating how many regular cigarettes and VLNC cigarettes they would purchase at 0.5x, 1x, and 2x the current market price for regular cigarettes, assuming the price of VLNC cigarettes remained constant. They also rated the subjective effects of the VLNC cigarette and their usual-brand regular cigarettes. Cross-price elasticity for VLNC cigarettes was estimated as 0.24 and was significantly positive, indicating that VLNC cigarettes are partially substitutable for regular cigarettes. VLNC cigarettes were rated as less satisfying and psychologically rewarding than regular cigarettes, but this was unrelated to demand or substitutability. VLNC cigarettes are potentially substitutable for regular cigarettes. Their availability may reduce tobacco consumption, nicotine intake and addiction; making it easier for smokers to quit. VLNC cigarettes share the behavioural and sensory components of smoking whilst delivering negligible levels of nicotine. Although smokers rated VLNCs as less satisfying than regular cigarettes, smokers said they would increase their consumption of VLNCs as the price of regular cigarettes increased, if VLNCs were available at a lower price. This suggests that VLNCs are partially substitutable for regular cigarettes. VLNCs can be part of an effective tobacco control strategy, by reducing nicotine dependence and improving health and financial outcomes for smokers

  12. Task parameters affecting ergonomic demands and productivity of HVAC duct installation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mitropoulos, Panagiotis; Hussain, Sanaa; Guarascio-Howard, Linda; Memarian, Babak

    2014-01-01

    Mechanical installation workers experience work-related musculoskeletal disorders (WMSDs) at high rates. (1) Quantify the ergonomic demands during HVAC installation, (2) identify the tasks and task parameters that generated extreme ergonomic demands, and (3) propose improvements to reduce the WMSDs among mechanical workers. The study focused on installation of rectangular ductwork components using ladders, and analyzed five operations by two mechanical contractors. Using continuous time observational assessment, the videotaped operations were analyzed along two dimensions: (1) the production tasks and durations, and (2) the ergonomic demands for four body regions (neck, arms/shoulders, back, and knees). The analysis identified tasks with low portion of productive time and high portion of extreme postures, and task parameters that generated extreme postures. Duct alignment was the task with the highest portion of extreme postures. The position of the ladder (angle and distance from the duct) was a task parameter that strongly influenced the extreme postures for back, neck and shoulders. Other contributing factors included the difficulty to reach the hand tools when working on the ladder, the congestion of components in the ceiling, and the space between the duct and the ceiling. The identified tasks and factors provide directions for improvement.

  13. The Effect of Two Different Cognitive Tests on Gait Parameters during Dual Tasks in Healthy Postmenopausal Women

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Magdalena Hagner-Derengowska

    2016-01-01

    Full Text Available Introduction. The paper aims to evaluate the influence of two different demanding cognitive tasks on gait parameters using BTS SMART system analysis. Patients and Methods. The study comprised 53 postmenopausal women aged 64.5 ± 6.7 years (range: 47–79. For every subject, gait analysis using a BTS SMART system was performed in a dual-task study design under three conditions: (I while walking only (single task, (II walking while performing a simultaneous simple cognitive task (SCT (dual task, and (III walking while performing a simultaneous complex cognitive task (CCT (dual task. Time-space parameters of gait pertaining to the length of a single support phase, double support phase, gait speed, step length, step width, and leg swing speed were analyzed. Results. Performance of cognitive tests during gait resulted in a statistically significant prolongation of the left (by 7% and right (by 7% foot gait cycle, shortening of the length of steps made with the right extremity (by 4%, reduction of speed of swings made with the left (by 11% and right (by 8% extremity, and reduction in gait speed (by 6%. Conclusions. Performance of cognitive tests during gait changes its individual pattern in relation to the level of the difficulty of the task.

  14. Cognitive and motor dual task gait training improve dual task gait performance after stroke - A randomized controlled pilot trial.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Liu, Yan-Ci; Yang, Yea-Ru; Tsai, Yun-An; Wang, Ray-Yau

    2017-06-22

    This study investigated effects of cognitive and motor dual task gait training on dual task gait performance in stroke. Participants (n = 28) were randomly assigned to cognitive dual task gait training (CDTT), motor dual task gait training (MDTT), or conventional physical therapy (CPT) group. Participants in CDTT or MDTT group practiced the cognitive or motor tasks respectively during walking. Participants in CPT group received strengthening, balance, and gait training. The intervention was 30 min/session, 3 sessions/week for 4 weeks. Three test conditions to evaluate the training effects were single walking, walking while performing cognitive task (serial subtraction), and walking while performing motor task (tray-carrying). Parameters included gait speed, dual task cost of gait speed (DTC-speed), cadence, stride time, and stride length. After CDTT, cognitive-motor dual task gait performance (stride length and DTC-speed) was improved (p = 0.021; p = 0.015). After MDTT, motor dual task gait performance (gait speed, stride length, and DTC-speed) was improved (p = 0.008; p = 0.008; p = 0.008 respectively). It seems that CDTT improved cognitive dual task gait performance and MDTT improved motor dual task gait performance although such improvements did not reach significant group difference. Therefore, different types of dual task gait training can be adopted to enhance different dual task gait performance in stroke.

  15. Effects of task demands on the early neural processing of fearful and happy facial expressions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Itier, Roxane J; Neath-Tavares, Karly N

    2017-05-15

    Task demands shape how we process environmental stimuli but their impact on the early neural processing of facial expressions remains unclear. In a within-subject design, ERPs were recorded to the same fearful, happy and neutral facial expressions presented during a gender discrimination, an explicit emotion discrimination and an oddball detection tasks, the most studied tasks in the field. Using an eye tracker, fixation on the face nose was enforced using a gaze-contingent presentation. Task demands modulated amplitudes from 200 to 350ms at occipito-temporal sites spanning the EPN component. Amplitudes were more negative for fearful than neutral expressions starting on N170 from 150 to 350ms, with a temporo-occipital distribution, whereas no clear effect of happy expressions was seen. Task and emotion effects never interacted in any time window or for the ERP components analyzed (P1, N170, EPN). Thus, whether emotion is explicitly discriminated or irrelevant for the task at hand, neural correlates of fearful and happy facial expressions seem immune to these task demands during the first 350ms of visual processing. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  16. Parsing a cognitive task: a characterization of the mind's bottleneck.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mariano Sigman

    2005-02-01

    Full Text Available Parsing a mental operation into components, characterizing the parallel or serial nature of this flow, and understanding what each process ultimately contributes to response time are fundamental questions in cognitive neuroscience. Here we show how a simple theoretical model leads to an extended set of predictions concerning the distribution of response time and its alteration by simultaneous performance of another task. The model provides a synthesis of psychological refractory period and random-walk models of response time. It merely assumes that a task consists of three consecutive stages-perception, decision based on noisy integration of evidence, and response-and that the perceptual and motor stages can operate simultaneously with stages of another task, while the central decision process constitutes a bottleneck. We designed a number-comparison task that provided a thorough test of the model by allowing independent variations in number notation, numerical distance, response complexity, and temporal asynchrony relative to an interfering probe task of tone discrimination. The results revealed a parsing of the comparison task in which each variable affects only one stage. Numerical distance affects the integration process, which is the only step that cannot proceed in parallel and has a major contribution to response time variability. The other stages, mapping the numeral to an internal quantity and executing the motor response, can be carried out in parallel with another task. Changing the duration of these processes has no significant effect on the variance.

  17. Designing informative warning signals: Effects of indicator type, modality, and task demand on recognition speed and accuracy

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stevens, Catherine J.; Brennan, David; Petocz, Agnes; Howell, Clare

    2009-01-01

    An experiment investigated the assumption that natural indicators which exploit existing learned associations between a signal and an event make more effective warnings than previously unlearned symbolic indicators. Signal modality (visual, auditory) and task demand (low, high) were also manipulated. Warning effectiveness was indexed by accuracy and reaction time (RT) recorded during training and dual task test phases. Thirty-six participants were trained to recognize 4 natural and 4 symbolic indicators, either visual or auditory, paired with critical incidents from an aviation context. As hypothesized, accuracy was greater and RT was faster in response to natural indicators during the training phase. This pattern of responding was upheld in test phase conditions with respect to accuracy but observed in RT only in test phase conditions involving high demand and the auditory modality. Using the experiment as a specific example, we argue for the importance of considering the cognitive contribution of the user (viz., prior learned associations) in the warning design process. Drawing on semiotics and cognitive psychology, we highlight the indexical nature of so-called auditory icons or natural indicators and argue that the cogniser is an indispensable element in the tripartite nature of signification. PMID:20523852

  18. Reduced Electromyographic Fatigue Threshold after Performing a Cognitive Fatiguing Task.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ferris, Justine R; Tomlinson, Mary A; Ward, Tayler N; Pepin, Marie E; Malek, Moh H

    2018-02-22

    Cognitive fatigue tasks performed prior to exercise may reduce exercise capacity. The electromyographic fatigue threshold (EMGFT) is the highest exercise intensity that can be maintained without significant increase in the EMG amplitude versus time relationship. To date, no studies have examined the effect of cognitive fatigue on the estimation of the EMGFT. The purpose of this study, therefore, was to determine whether or not cognitive fatigue prior to performing exercise reduces the estimated EMGFT. Eight healthy college-aged men were recruited from a university student population and visited the laboratory on multiple occasions. In a randomized order, subjects performed either the cognitive fatigue task (AX Continuous Performance Test; AX-CPT) for 60 min on one visit (experimental condition) or watched a video on trains for 60 min on the other visit (control condition). After each condition, subjects performed the incremental single-leg knee-extensor ergometry test while the EMG amplitude was recorded from the rectus femoris muscle and heart rate was monitored throughout. Thereafter, the EMGFT was calculated for each participant for each visit and compared using paired samples t-test. For exercise outcomes, there were no significant mean differences for maximal power output between the two conditions (control: 51 ± 5 vs. fatigue: 50 ± 3 W), but a significant decrease in EMGFT between the two conditions (control: 31 ± 3 vs. fatigue: 24 ± 2 W; p = 0.013). Moreover, maximal heart rate was significantly different between the two conditions (control: 151 ± 5 vs. fatigue: 132 ± 6; p = 0.027). These results suggest that performing the cognitive fatiguing task reduces the EMGFT with a corresponding reduction in maximal heart rate response.

  19. Visual Task Demands and the Auditory Mismatch Negativity: An Empirical Study and a Meta-Analysis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wiens, Stefan; Szychowska, Malina; Nilsson, Mats E

    2016-01-01

    Because the auditory system is particularly useful in monitoring the environment, previous research has examined whether task-irrelevant, auditory distracters are processed even if subjects focus their attention on visual stimuli. This research suggests that attentionally demanding visual tasks decrease the auditory mismatch negativity (MMN) to simultaneously presented auditory distractors. Because a recent behavioral study found that high visual perceptual load decreased detection sensitivity of simultaneous tones, we used a similar task (n = 28) to determine if high visual perceptual load would reduce the auditory MMN. Results suggested that perceptual load did not decrease the MMN. At face value, these nonsignificant findings may suggest that effects of perceptual load on the MMN are smaller than those of other demanding visual tasks. If so, effect sizes should differ systematically between the present and previous studies. We conducted a selective meta-analysis of published studies in which the MMN was derived from the EEG, the visual task demands were continuous and varied between high and low within the same task, and the task-irrelevant tones were presented in a typical oddball paradigm simultaneously with the visual stimuli. Because the meta-analysis suggested that the present (null) findings did not differ systematically from previous findings, the available evidence was combined. Results of this meta-analysis confirmed that demanding visual tasks reduce the MMN to auditory distracters. However, because the meta-analysis was based on small studies and because of the risk for publication biases, future studies should be preregistered with large samples (n > 150) to provide confirmatory evidence for the results of the present meta-analysis. These future studies should also use control conditions that reduce confounding effects of neural adaptation, and use load manipulations that are defined independently from their effects on the MMN.

  20. Visual Task Demands and the Auditory Mismatch Negativity: An Empirical Study and a Meta-Analysis

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wiens, Stefan; Szychowska, Malina; Nilsson, Mats E.

    2016-01-01

    Because the auditory system is particularly useful in monitoring the environment, previous research has examined whether task-irrelevant, auditory distracters are processed even if subjects focus their attention on visual stimuli. This research suggests that attentionally demanding visual tasks decrease the auditory mismatch negativity (MMN) to simultaneously presented auditory distractors. Because a recent behavioral study found that high visual perceptual load decreased detection sensitivity of simultaneous tones, we used a similar task (n = 28) to determine if high visual perceptual load would reduce the auditory MMN. Results suggested that perceptual load did not decrease the MMN. At face value, these nonsignificant findings may suggest that effects of perceptual load on the MMN are smaller than those of other demanding visual tasks. If so, effect sizes should differ systematically between the present and previous studies. We conducted a selective meta-analysis of published studies in which the MMN was derived from the EEG, the visual task demands were continuous and varied between high and low within the same task, and the task-irrelevant tones were presented in a typical oddball paradigm simultaneously with the visual stimuli. Because the meta-analysis suggested that the present (null) findings did not differ systematically from previous findings, the available evidence was combined. Results of this meta-analysis confirmed that demanding visual tasks reduce the MMN to auditory distracters. However, because the meta-analysis was based on small studies and because of the risk for publication biases, future studies should be preregistered with large samples (n > 150) to provide confirmatory evidence for the results of the present meta-analysis. These future studies should also use control conditions that reduce confounding effects of neural adaptation, and use load manipulations that are defined independently from their effects on the MMN. PMID:26741815

  1. Electrophysiological indices of anterior cingulate cortex function reveal changing levels of cognitive effort and reward valuation that sustain task performance.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Umemoto, Akina; Inzlicht, Michael; Holroyd, Clay B

    2018-06-14

    Successful execution of goal-directed behaviors often requires the deployment of cognitive control, which is thought to require cognitive effort. Recent theories have proposed that anterior cingulate cortex (ACC) regulates control levels by weighing the reward-related benefits of control against its effort-related costs. However, given that the sensations of cognitive effort and reward valuation are available only to introspection, this hypothesis is difficult to investigate empirically. We have proposed that two electrophysiological indices of ACC function, frontal midline theta and the reward positivity (RewP), provide objective measures of these functions. To explore this issue, we recorded the electroencephalogram (EEG) from participants engaged in an extended, cognitively-demanding task. Participants performed a time estimation task for 2hours in which they received reward and error feedback according to their task performance. We observed that the amplitude of the RewP, a feedback-locked component of the event related brain potential associated with reward processing, decreased with time-on-task. Conversely, frontal midline theta power, which consists of 4-8Hz EEG oscillations associated with cognitive effort, increased with time-on-task. We also explored how these phenomena changed over time by conducting within-participant multi-level modeling analyses. Our results suggest that extended execution of a cognitively-demanding task is characterized by an early phase in which high control levels foster rapid improvements in task performance, and a later phase in which high control levels were necessary to maintain stable task performance, perhaps counteracting waning reward valuation. Copyright © 2018. Published by Elsevier Ltd.

  2. Influence of malnutrition on cognitive development assessed by Piagetian tasks.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Agarwal, D K; Upadhyay, S K; Agarwal, K N

    1989-01-01

    Cognitive development of 1336 children (6-8 yr) was studied in relation to their nutritional status. Seven Piagetian tasks covering the mental process of a concrete operational period were given to each child to assess the cognitive development. Weschler intelligence scale for Indian Children was used to assess the IQ of each child. The percentage of malnourished children in stage I of development (preoperational) was significantly higher as that of wellnourished children. A higher percentage of children in the latter group was in stage III of development (concrete operation). In boys performance on all the tasks was influenced by undernutrition except for class inclusion. In girls this was true only for conservation of liquid, substance and ordinal relation. The results of the regression analysis showed that nutrition was the only factor weakly associated with the poor performance of the children in various tasks. Further, the effect of nutrition was more pronounced in conservation tasks indicating poor verbal reasoning and comprehension in malnourished children. Information was also collected regarding the parental education and occupation, socio-economic status, caste, economic sufficiency, psychosocial stimulation and home environment. However, these environmental factors did not influence the development of rural children. This might be due to the fact that the population in the present study did not vary much with regard to these variables.

  3. Effects of the cognitive tasks in the postural control of elderly: A systematic revision

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Larissa Pires de Andrade

    2011-09-01

    Full Text Available Demanding attention in order to keep postural balance increases with aging and with the presence of concurrent tasks that require information processing. Several studies have demonstrated that motor performance can be related to the complexity of the task and aging process, presenting a possible interaction between these factors. The aim of this review was to identify and analyze published papers about the effects of cognitive tasks on the postural control of elderly individuals. A systematic search in the Web of Science, SportDiscus, CINAHL, Science Direct on line, Biological Abstracts, PsycINFO, and Medline databases was made and 444 articles were found. Eight were selected that studied the variables of interest. These studies showed that postural control seems to be influenced by the individual's attention processes and that deficits in such ability may be associated to an increased risk of falls.

  4. Effects of the cognitive tasks in the postural control of elderly: A systematic revision

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    L.P. Andrade

    2011-01-01

    Full Text Available Demanding attention in order to keep postural balance increases with aging and with the presence of concurrent tasks that require information processing. Several studies have demonstrated that motor performance can be related to the complexity of the task and aging process, presenting a possible interaction between these factors. The aim of this review was to identify and analyze published papers about the effects of cognitive tasks on the postural control of elderly individuals. A systematic search in the Web of Science, SportDiscus, CINAHL, Science Direct on line, Biological Abstracts, PsycINFO, and Medline databases was made and 444 articles were found. Eight were selected that studied the variables of interest. These studies showed that postural control seems to be influenced by the individual's attention processes and that deficits in such ability may be associated to an increased risk of falls.

  5. A functional approach for research on cognitive control: Analysing cognitive control tasks and their effects in terms of operant conditioning.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Liefooghe, Baptist; De Houwer, Jan

    2016-02-01

    Cognitive control is an important mental ability that is examined using a multitude of cognitive control tasks and effects. The present paper presents the first steps in the elaboration of a functional approach, which aims to uncover the communalities and differences between different cognitive control tasks and their effects. Based on the idea that responses in cognitive control tasks qualify as operant behaviour, we propose to reinterpret cognitive control tasks in terms of operant contingencies and cognitive control effects as instances of moderated stimulus control. We illustrate how our approach can be used to uncover communalities between topographically different cognitive control tasks and can lead to novel questions about the processes underlying cognitive control. © 2015 International Union of Psychological Science.

  6. Mental workload and cognitive task automaticity: an evaluation of subjective and time estimation metrics.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Liu, Y; Wickens, C D

    1994-11-01

    The evaluation of mental workload is becoming increasingly important in system design and analysis. The present study examined the structure and assessment of mental workload in performing decision and monitoring tasks by focusing on two mental workload measurements: subjective assessment and time estimation. The task required the assignment of a series of incoming customers to the shortest of three parallel service lines displayed on a computer monitor. The subject was either in charge of the customer assignment (manual mode) or was monitoring an automated system performing the same task (automatic mode). In both cases, the subjects were required to detect the non-optimal assignments that they or the computer had made. Time pressure was manipulated by the experimenter to create fast and slow conditions. The results revealed a multi-dimensional structure of mental workload and a multi-step process of subjective workload assessment. The results also indicated that subjective workload was more influenced by the subject's participatory mode than by the factor of task speed. The time estimation intervals produced while performing the decision and monitoring tasks had significantly greater length and larger variability than those produced while either performing no other tasks or performing a well practised customer assignment task. This result seemed to indicate that time estimation was sensitive to the presence of perceptual/cognitive demands, but not to response related activities to which behavioural automaticity has developed.

  7. The Language of Children with Spina Bifida and Hydrocephalus: Meeting Task Demands and Mastering Syntax.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Byrne, Karen; And Others

    1990-01-01

    Linguistic performance of 7 children (mean age=68 months) with spina bifida, hydrocephalus, and average intelligence was evaluated. Subjects dealt with the semantic-pragmatic requirements of linguistically posed problems in an age-appropriate manner. Performance declined as task demands increased but no more than performance of nondisabled…

  8. A Software Environment for an Adaptive Human-Aware Software Agent Supporting Attention-Demanding Tasks

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Bosse, T.; Memon, Z.A.; Oorburg, R.; Umair, M.; Treur, J.; de Vos, M.

    2011-01-01

    This paper presents a software environment providing human-aware ambient support for a human performing a task that demands substantial amounts of attention. The agent obtains human attention-awareness in an adaptive manner by use of a dynamical model of human attention, gaze sensoring by an

  9. Disentangling longitudinal relations between physical activity, work-related fatigue, and task demands

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Vries, J.D. de; Claessens, B.J.C.; Hooff, M.L.M. van; Geurts, S.A.E.; Bossche, S.N.J. van den; Kompier, A.J.

    2016-01-01

    Purpose This longitudinal study examined ‘normal’, ‘reversed’, and ‘reciprocal’ relationships between (1) physical activity and work-related fatigue; and (2) physical activity and task demands. Furthermore, the effects of across-time change in meaningful physical activity groups on levels of

  10. Dual-Task Walking in Challenging Environments in People with Stroke: Cognitive-Motor Interference and Task Prioritization

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Celine Timmermans

    2018-01-01

    Full Text Available Cognitive-motor interference may contribute to the risk of falling in people with stroke, as may be the associated phenomenon of inappropriate task prioritization. Examining dual-task walking could provide valuable insights as to how to best evaluate and treat walking in people with stroke. This study aimed to examine the effect of different walking environments on cognitive-motor interference and task prioritization in dual-task walking in people with stroke. Using a repeated-measures design, cognitive-motor interference and task prioritization were assessed in 30 stroke survivors, while walking in a plain environment and in two challenging environments that were enriched with either stationary physical context or suddenly appearing projector-augmented context. All three walking environment conditions were performed with and without a concurrent serial-3 subtraction task. We found stronger cognitive-motor interference for the two challenging environments than for the plain walking environment. Cognitive-motor interference did not differ between challenging walking environments, but task prioritization did: motor performance was prioritized more in the environment with physical context than in the environment with projector-augmented context and vice versa for cognitive-task performance. In conclusion, walking environment strongly influenced cognitive-motor interference and task prioritization during dual-task walking in people with stroke.

  11. Attention demanding tasks during treadmill walking reduce step width variability in young adults

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Troy Karen L

    2005-08-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background The variability of step time and step width is associated with falls by older adults. Further, step time is significantly influenced when performing attention demanding tasks while walking. Without exception, step time variability has been reported to increase in normal and pathologically aging older adults. Because of the role of step width in managing frontal plane dynamic stability, documenting the influence of attention-demanding tasks on step width variability may provide insight to events that can disturb dynamic stability during locomotion and increase fall risk. Preliminary evidence suggests performance of an attention demanding task significantly decreases step width variability of young adults walking on a treadmill. The purpose of the present study was to confirm or refute this finding by characterizing the extent and direction of the effects of a widely used attention demanding task (Stroop test on the step width variability of young adults walking on a motorized treadmill. Methods Fifteen healthy young adults walked on a motorized treadmill at a self-selected velocity for 10 minutes under two conditions; without performing an attention demanding task and while performing the Stroop test. Step width of continuous and consecutive steps during the collection was derived from the data recorded using a motion capture system. Step width variability was computed as the standard deviation of all recorded steps. Results Step width decreased four percent during performance of the Stroop test but the effect was not significant (p = 0.10. In contrast, the 16 percent decrease in step width variability during the Stroop test condition was significant (p = 0.029. Conclusion The results support those of our previous work in which a different attention demanding task also decreased step width variability of young subjects while walking on a treadmill. The decreased step width variability observed while performing an attention

  12. Prefrontal cortex activation upon a demanding virtual hand-controlled task: a new frontier for neuroergonomics

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Marika eCarrieri

    2016-02-01

    Full Text Available Functional near-infrared spectroscopy (fNIRS is a non-invasive vascular-based functional neuroimaging technology that can assess, simultaneously from multiple cortical areas, concentration changes in oxygenated-deoxygenated hemoglobin at the level of the cortical microcirculation blood vessels. fNIRS, with its high degree of ecological validity and its very limited requirement of physical constraints to subjects, could represent a valid tool for monitoring cortical responses in the research field of neuroergonomics. In virtual reality (VR real situations can be replicated with greater control than those obtainable in the real world. Therefore, VR is the ideal setting where studies about neuroergonomics applications can be performed. The aim of the present study was to investigate, by a 20-channel fNIRS system, the dorsolateral/ventrolateral prefrontal cortex (DLPFC/VLPFC in subjects while performing a demanding VR hand-controlled task (HCT. Considering the complexity of the HCT, its execution should require the attentional resources allocation and the integration of different executive functions. The HCT simulates the interaction with a real, remotely-driven, system operating in a critical environment. The hand movements were captured by a high spatial and temporal resolution 3D hand-sensing device, the LEAP motion controller, a gesture-based control interface that could be used in VR for tele-operated applications. Fifteen University students were asked to guide, with their right hand/forearm, a virtual ball (VB over a virtual route (VROU reproducing a 42-m narrow road including some critical points. The subjects tried to travel as long as possible without making VB fall. The distance traveled by the guided VB was 70.2±37.2 m. The less skilled subjects failed several times in guiding the VB over the VROU. Nevertheless, a bilateral VLPFC activation, in response to the HCT execution, was observed in all the subjects. No correlation was found

  13. Prefrontal Cortex Activation Upon a Demanding Virtual Hand-Controlled Task: A New Frontier for Neuroergonomics.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Carrieri, Marika; Petracca, Andrea; Lancia, Stefania; Basso Moro, Sara; Brigadoi, Sabrina; Spezialetti, Matteo; Ferrari, Marco; Placidi, Giuseppe; Quaresima, Valentina

    2016-01-01

    Functional near-infrared spectroscopy (fNIRS) is a non-invasive vascular-based functional neuroimaging technology that can assess, simultaneously from multiple cortical areas, concentration changes in oxygenated-deoxygenated hemoglobin at the level of the cortical microcirculation blood vessels. fNIRS, with its high degree of ecological validity and its very limited requirement of physical constraints to subjects, could represent a valid tool for monitoring cortical responses in the research field of neuroergonomics. In virtual reality (VR) real situations can be replicated with greater control than those obtainable in the real world. Therefore, VR is the ideal setting where studies about neuroergonomics applications can be performed. The aim of the present study was to investigate, by a 20-channel fNIRS system, the dorsolateral/ventrolateral prefrontal cortex (DLPFC/VLPFC) in subjects while performing a demanding VR hand-controlled task (HCT). Considering the complexity of the HCT, its execution should require the attentional resources allocation and the integration of different executive functions. The HCT simulates the interaction with a real, remotely-driven, system operating in a critical environment. The hand movements were captured by a high spatial and temporal resolution 3-dimensional (3D) hand-sensing device, the LEAP motion controller, a gesture-based control interface that could be used in VR for tele-operated applications. Fifteen University students were asked to guide, with their right hand/forearm, a virtual ball (VB) over a virtual route (VROU) reproducing a 42 m narrow road including some critical points. The subjects tried to travel as long as possible without making VB fall. The distance traveled by the guided VB was 70.2 ± 37.2 m. The less skilled subjects failed several times in guiding the VB over the VROU. Nevertheless, a bilateral VLPFC activation, in response to the HCT execution, was observed in all the subjects. No correlation was found

  14. Slowing down after a mild traumatic brain injury: a strategy to improve cognitive task performance?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ozen, Lana J; Fernandes, Myra A

    2012-01-01

    Long-term persistent attention and memory difficulties following a mild traumatic brain injury (TBI) often go undetected on standard neuropsychological tests, despite complaints by mild TBI individuals. We conducted a visual Repetition Detection working memory task to digits, in which we manipulated task difficulty by increasing cognitive load, to identify subtle deficits long after a mild TBI. Twenty-six undergraduate students with a self-report of one mild TBI, which occurred at least 6 months prior, and 31 non-head-injured controls took part in the study. Participants were not informed until study completion that the study's purpose was to examine cognitive changes following a mild TBI, to reduce the influence of "diagnosis threat" on performance. Neuropsychological tasks did not differentiate the groups, though mild TBI participants reported higher state anxiety levels. On our working memory task, the mild TBI group took significantly longer to accurately detect repeated targets on our task, suggesting that slowed information processing is a long-term consequence of mild TBI. Accuracy was comparable in the low-load condition and, unexpectedly, mild TBI performance surpassed that of controls in the high-load condition. Temporal analysis of target identification suggested a strategy difference between groups: mild TBI participants made a significantly greater number of accurate responses following the target's offset, and significantly fewer erroneous distracter responses prior to target onset, compared with controls. Results suggest that long after a mild TBI, high-functioning young adults invoke a strategy of delaying their identification of targets in order to maintain, and facilitate, accuracy on cognitively demanding tasks. © The Author 2011. Published by Oxford University Press. All rights reserved.

  15. The neural dynamics of stimulus and response conflict processing as a function of response complexity and task demands

    Science.gov (United States)

    Donohue, Sarah E.; Appelbaum, Lawrence G.; McKay, Cameron C.; Woldorff, Marty G.

    2016-01-01

    Both stimulus and response conflict can disrupt behavior by slowing response times and decreasing accuracy. Although several neural activations have been associated with conflict processing, it is unclear how specific any of these are to the type of stimulus conflict or the amount of response conflict. Here, we recorded electrical brain activity, while manipulating the type of stimulus conflict in the task (spatial [Flanker] versus semantic [Stroop]) and the amount of response conflict (two versus four response choices). Behaviorally, responses were slower to incongruent versus congruent stimuli across all task and response types, along with overall slowing for higher response-mapping complexity. The earliest incongruency-related neural effect was a short-duration frontally-distributed negativity at ~200 ms that was only present in the Flanker spatial-conflict task. At longer latencies, the classic fronto-central incongruency-related negativity ‘Ninc’ was observed for all conditions, which was larger and ~100 ms longer in duration with more response options. Further, the onset of the motor-related lateralized readiness potential (LRP) was earlier for the two vs. four response sets, indicating that smaller response sets enabled faster motor-response preparation. The late positive complex (LPC) was present in all conditions except the two-response Stroop task, suggesting this late conflict-related activity is not specifically related to task type or response-mapping complexity. Importantly, across tasks and conditions, the LRP onset at or before the conflict-related Ninc, indicating that motor preparation is a rapid, automatic process that interacts with the conflict-detection processes after it has begun. Together, these data highlight how different conflict-related processes operate in parallel and depend on both the cognitive demands of the task and the number of response options. PMID:26827917

  16. The feasibility of using pupillometry to measure cognitive effort in aphasia: Evidence from a working memory span task

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Esther Sung Kim

    2015-05-01

    In this study, three PWA completed a computerized picture span task while an eye-tracker measured pupil dilation. As short-term memory demands (i.e., span size increased, average pupil size significantly increased in all three PWA. These data provide preliminary support for the use of pupillometry to gauge cognitive effort in PWA. A larger study of PWA and demographically-matched control participants is currently underway, allowing for analysis of change in pupil size within and between groups. Examination of cognitive effort will provide a more comprehensive understanding of the nature of linguistic and cognitive functioning in aphasia.

  17. Physical and cognitive task analysis in interventional radiology

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Johnson, S [School of Psychology, University of Liverpool, Liverpool (United Kingdom); Healey, A [Royal Liverpool University Hospital, Liverpool (United Kingdom); Evans, J [Royal Liverpool University Hospital, Liverpool (United Kingdom); Murphy, M [Royal Liverpool University Hospital, Liverpool (United Kingdom); Crawshaw, M [Department of Psychology, University of Hull, Hull (United Kingdom); Gould, D [Royal Liverpool University Hospital, Liverpool (United Kingdom)

    2006-01-15

    AIM: To identify, describe and detail the cognitive thought processes, decision-making, and physical actions involved in the preparation and successful performance of core interventional radiology procedures. MATERIALS AND METHODS: Five commonly performed core interventional radiology procedures were selected for cognitive task analysis. Several examples of each procedure being performed by consultant interventional radiologists were videoed. The videos of those procedures, and the steps required for successful outcome, were analysed by a psychologist and an interventional radiologist. Once a skeleton algorithm of the procedures was defined, further refinement was achieved using individual interview techniques with consultant interventional radiologists. Additionally a critique of each iteration of the established algorithm was sought from non-participating independent consultant interventional radiologists. RESULTS: Detailed task descriptions and decision protocols were developed for five interventional radiology procedures (arterial puncture, nephrostomy, venous access, biopsy-using both ultrasound and computed tomography, and percutaneous transhepatic cholangiogram). Identical tasks performed within these procedures were identified and standardized within the protocols. CONCLUSIONS: Complex procedures were broken down and their constituent processes identified. This might be suitable for use as a training protocol to provide a universally acceptable safe practice at the most fundamental level. It is envisaged that data collected in this way can be used as an educational resource for trainees and could provide the basis for a training curriculum in interventional radiology. It will direct trainees towards safe practice of the highest standard. It will also provide performance objectives of a simulator model.

  18. Physical and cognitive task analysis in interventional radiology

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Johnson, S.; Healey, A.; Evans, J.; Murphy, M.; Crawshaw, M.; Gould, D.

    2006-01-01

    AIM: To identify, describe and detail the cognitive thought processes, decision-making, and physical actions involved in the preparation and successful performance of core interventional radiology procedures. MATERIALS AND METHODS: Five commonly performed core interventional radiology procedures were selected for cognitive task analysis. Several examples of each procedure being performed by consultant interventional radiologists were videoed. The videos of those procedures, and the steps required for successful outcome, were analysed by a psychologist and an interventional radiologist. Once a skeleton algorithm of the procedures was defined, further refinement was achieved using individual interview techniques with consultant interventional radiologists. Additionally a critique of each iteration of the established algorithm was sought from non-participating independent consultant interventional radiologists. RESULTS: Detailed task descriptions and decision protocols were developed for five interventional radiology procedures (arterial puncture, nephrostomy, venous access, biopsy-using both ultrasound and computed tomography, and percutaneous transhepatic cholangiogram). Identical tasks performed within these procedures were identified and standardized within the protocols. CONCLUSIONS: Complex procedures were broken down and their constituent processes identified. This might be suitable for use as a training protocol to provide a universally acceptable safe practice at the most fundamental level. It is envisaged that data collected in this way can be used as an educational resource for trainees and could provide the basis for a training curriculum in interventional radiology. It will direct trainees towards safe practice of the highest standard. It will also provide performance objectives of a simulator model

  19. Attentional Demands of Balance Under Dual Task Conditions in Young Adults

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Monire Nobahar Ahari

    2012-10-01

    Full Text Available Objectives: The aim of this study was to identify the role of attentional process in postural control using choice reaction time task while changing the visual and proprioceptive cues under difficult balance task (standing on one-leg. Methods: This cross-sectional study was conducted by participating 20 young people (22.75±2.29. Each subject performed one-leg standing as balance task for each of the following 2 test conditions: free balance position (single task, and balancing while performing secondary cognitive task (choice reaction time task. Each test was carried out for each of the following 3 sensory conditions: on hard surface with open eyes, on hard surface with closed eyes and on foam surface with closed eyes. One way ANOVA was used for analysis. Results: Analyses of the task conditions didn’t show significant difference between single and dual task under two sensory conditions, in open and in closed eye on hard surface (P>0.05, but there was significant difference between single and dual tasks on soft foam with closed eyes [t(19=-2.391, P=0.027]. Discussion: Findings revealed that significant difference in balance performance of individuals under three different sensory conditions caused by reduction in base of support and this effect can be seen in dual task condition as well. Therefore it can be concluded that the nature of the primary task have the most influence on balance performance and this is not the effect of dual task condition.

  20. Inharmonic music elicits more negative affect and interferes more with a concurrent cognitive task than does harmonic music.

    Science.gov (United States)

    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.

  1. Investigating long-range correlation properties in EEG during complex cognitive tasks

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Karkare, Siddharth; Saha, Goutam; Bhattacharya, Joydeep

    2009-01-01

    Previous work shows the presence of scale invariance and long-range correlations in ongoing and spontaneous activity of large scale brain responses (i.e. EEG), and such scaling behavior can also be modulated by simple sensory stimulus. However, little is known whether such alteration but not destruction in scaling properties also occurs during complex cognitive processing and if neuroplasticity plays any role in mediating such changes. In this study, we addressed these issues by investigating scaling properties of multivariate EEG signals obtained from two broad groups - artists and non-artists - while they performed complex tasks of perception and mental imagery of visual art objects. We found that brain regions showing increased correlation properties from rest were similar for both tasks, suggesting that brain networks responsible for visual perception are reactivated for mental imagery. Further, we observed that the two groups could be differentiated by scaling exponents and an artificial neural network based classifier achieved a classification efficiency of over 80%. These results altogether suggest that specific complex cognitive task demands and task-specific expertise can modify the temporal scale-free dynamics of brain responses.

  2. Investigating long-range correlation properties in EEG during complex cognitive tasks

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Karkare, Siddharth [Department of Electrical Engineering, Indian Institute of Technology, Kharagpur 721302 (India); Saha, Goutam [Department of Electronics and Electrical Communication Engineering, Indian Institute of Technology, Kharagpur 721302 (India); Bhattacharya, Joydeep [Department of Psychology, Goldsmiths College, University of London, New Cross, London SE14 6NW (United Kingdom); Commission for Scientific Visualization, Austrian Academy of Sciences, Vienna A1220 (Austria)], E-mail: j.bhattacharya@gold.ac.uk

    2009-11-30

    Previous work shows the presence of scale invariance and long-range correlations in ongoing and spontaneous activity of large scale brain responses (i.e. EEG), and such scaling behavior can also be modulated by simple sensory stimulus. However, little is known whether such alteration but not destruction in scaling properties also occurs during complex cognitive processing and if neuroplasticity plays any role in mediating such changes. In this study, we addressed these issues by investigating scaling properties of multivariate EEG signals obtained from two broad groups - artists and non-artists - while they performed complex tasks of perception and mental imagery of visual art objects. We found that brain regions showing increased correlation properties from rest were similar for both tasks, suggesting that brain networks responsible for visual perception are reactivated for mental imagery. Further, we observed that the two groups could be differentiated by scaling exponents and an artificial neural network based classifier achieved a classification efficiency of over 80%. These results altogether suggest that specific complex cognitive task demands and task-specific expertise can modify the temporal scale-free dynamics of brain responses.

  3. Effect of Passive Hyperthermia on Working Memory Resources during Simple and Complex Cognitive Tasks

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Nadia Gaoua

    2018-01-01

    Full Text Available The aim of this study was to verify the hypothesis that hyperthermia represents a cognitive load limiting available resources for executing concurrent cognitive tasks. Electroencephalographic activity (EEG: alpha and theta power was obtained in 10 hyperthermic participants in HOT (50°C, 50% RH conditions and in a normothermic state in CON (25°C, 50% RH conditions in counterbalanced order. In each trial, EEG was measured over the frontal lobe prior to task engagement (PRE in each condition and during simple (One Touch Stockings of Cambridge, OTS-4 and complex (OTS-6 cognitive tasks. Core (39.5 ± 0.5 vs. 36.9 ± 0.2°C and mean skin (39.06 ± 0.3 vs. 31.6 ± 0.6°C temperatures were significantly higher in HOT than CON (p < 0.005. Theta power significantly increased with task demand (p = 0.017, η2 = 0.36 and was significantly higher in HOT than CON (p = 0.041, η2 = 0.39. The difference between HOT and CON was large (η2 = 0.40 and significant (p = 0.036 PRE, large (η2 = 0.20 but not significant (p = 0.17 during OTS-4, and disappeared during OTS-6 (p = 0.87, η2 = 0.00. Those changes in theta power suggest that hyperthermia may act as an additional cognitive load. However, this load disappeared during OTS-6 together with an impaired performance, suggesting a potential saturation of the available resources.

  4. Cognitive abilities required in time judgment depending on the temporal tasks used: A comparison of children and adults.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Droit-Volet, S; Wearden, J H; Zélanti, P S

    2015-01-01

    The aim of this study was to examine age-related differences in time judgments during childhood as a function of the temporal task used. Children aged 5 and 8 years, as well as adults, were submitted to 3 temporal tasks (bisection, generalization and reproduction) with short (0.4/0.8 s) and long durations (8/16 s). Furthermore, their cognitive capacities in terms of working memory, attentional control, and processing speed were assessed by a wide battery of neuropsychological tests. The results showed that the age-related differences in time judgment were greater in the reproduction task than in the temporal discrimination tasks. This task was indeed more demanding in terms of working memory and information processing speed. In addition, the bisection task appeared to be easier for children than the generalization task, whereas these 2 tasks were similar for the adults, although the generalization task required more attention to be paid to the processing of durations. Our study thus demonstrates that it is important to understand the different cognitive processes involved in time judgment as a function of the temporal tasks used before venturing to draw conclusions about the development of time perception capabilities.

  5. Subjective cognitive impairment: functional MRI during a divided attention task.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rodda, J; Dannhauser, T; Cutinha, D J; Shergill, S S; Walker, Z

    2011-10-01

    Individuals with subjective cognitive impairment (SCI) have persistent memory complaints but normal neurocognitive performance. For some, this may represent a pre-mild cognitive impairment (MCI) stage of Alzheimer's disease (AD). Given that attentional deficits and associated brain activation changes are present early in the course of AD, we aimed to determine whether SCI is associated with brain activation changes during attentional processing. Eleven SCI subjects and 10 controls completed a divided attention task during functional magnetic resonance imaging. SCI and control groups did not differ in sociodemographic, neurocognitive or behavioural measures. When group activation during the divided attention task was compared, the SCI group demonstrated increased activation in left medial temporal lobe, bilateral thalamus, posterior cingulate and caudate. This pattern of increased activation is similar to the pattern of decreased activation reported during divided attention in AD and may indicate compensatory changes. These findings suggest the presence of early functional changes in SCI; longitudinal studies will help to further elucidate the relationship between SCI and AD. Copyright © 2010 Elsevier Masson SAS. All rights reserved.

  6. Computerized assessment of sustained attention: interactive effects of task demand, noise, and anxiety.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ballard, J C

    1996-12-01

    In a sample of 163 college undergraduates, the effects of task demand, noise, and anxiety on Continuous Performance Test (CPT) errors were evaluated with multiple regression and multivariate analysis of variance. Results indicated significantly more omission errors on the difficult task. Complex interaction effects of noise and self-reported anxiety yielded more omissions in quiet intermittent white noise, particularly for high-anxious subjects performing the difficult task. Anxiety levels tended to increase from pretest to posttest, particularly for low-anxious subjects in the quiet, difficult-task condition, while a decrease was seen for high-anxious subjects in the loud, easy-task condition. Commission errors were unrelated to any predictor variables, suggesting that "attention" cannot be considered a unitary phenomenon. The variety of direct and interactive effects on vigilance performance underscore the need for clinicians to use a variety of measures to assess attentional skills, to avoid diagnosis of attention deficits on the basis of a single computerized task performance, and to rule out anxiety and other contributors to poor vigilance task performance.

  7. Cognitive demands of face monitoring: evidence for visuospatial overload.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Doherty-Sneddon, G; Bonner, L; Bruce, V

    2001-10-01

    Young children perform difficult communication tasks better face to face than when they cannot see one another (e.g., Doherty-Sneddon & Kent, 1996). However, in recent studies, it was found that children aged 6 and 10 years, describing abstract shapes, showed evidence of face-to-face interference rather than facilitation. For some communication tasks, access to visual signals (such as facial expression and eye gaze) may hinder rather than help children's communication. In new research we have pursued this interference effect. Five studies are described with adults and 10- and 6-year-old participants. It was found that looking at a face interfered with children's abilities to listen to descriptions of abstract shapes. Children also performed visuospatial memory tasks worse when they looked at someone's face prior to responding than when they looked at a visuospatial pattern or at the floor. It was concluded that performance on certain tasks was hindered by monitoring another person's face. It is suggested that processing of visual communication signals shares certain processing resources with the processing of other visuospatial information.

  8. Surface feature congruency effects in the object-reviewing paradigm are dependent on task memory demands.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kimchi, Ruth; Pirkner, Yossef

    2014-08-01

    Perception of object continuity depends on establishing correspondence between objects viewed across disruptions in visual information. The role of spatiotemporal information in guiding object continuity is well documented; the role of surface features, however, is controversial. Some researchers have shown an object-specific preview benefit (OSPB)-a standard index of object continuity-only when correspondence could be based on an object's spatiotemporal information, whereas others have found color-based OSPB, suggesting that surface features can also guide object continuity. This study shows that surface feature-based OSPB is dependent on the task memory demands. When the task involved letters and matching just one target letter to the preview ones, no color congruency effect was found under spatiotemporal discontinuity and spatiotemporal ambiguity (Experiments 1-3), indicating that the absence of feature-based OSPB cannot be accounted for by salient spatiotemporal discontinuity. When the task involved complex shapes and matching two target shapes to the preview ones, color-based OSPB was obtained. Critically, however, when a visual working memory task was performed concurrently with the matching task, the presence of a nonspatial (but not a spatial) working memory load eliminated the color-based OSPB (Experiments 4 and 5). These results suggest that the surface feature congruency effects that are observed in the object-reviewing paradigm (with the matching task) reflect memory-based strategies that participants use to solve a memory-demanding task; therefore, they are not reliable measures of online object continuity and cannot be taken as evidence for the role of surface features in establishing object correspondence.

  9. Task demands affect spatial reference frame weighting during tactile localization in sighted and congenitally blind adults

    OpenAIRE

    Heed, Tobias; Roeder, Brigitte; Badde, Stephanie; Schubert, Jonathan

    2017-01-01

    Task demands modulate tactile localization in sighted humans, presumably through weight adjustments in the spatial integration of anatomical, skin-based, and external, posture-based information. In contrast, previous studies have suggested that congenitally blind humans, by default, refrain from automatic spatial integration and localize touch using only skin-based information. Here, sighted and congenitally blind participants localized tactile targets on the palm or back of one hand, while i...

  10. Eldercare demands, mental health, and work performance: the moderating role of satisfaction with eldercare tasks.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zacher, Hannes; Jimmieson, Nerina L; Winter, Gabriele

    2012-01-01

    Due to demographic changes, a growing number of employees provide in-home care to an elderly family member. Previous research suggested a negative relationship between employees' eldercare demands and their work performance. However, the empirical nature of this relationship and its boundary conditions and mediating mechanisms have been neglected. The goal of this multisource study was to examine a mediated-moderation model of eldercare demands, mental health, and work performance. Drawing on the theory of conservation of resources (Hobfoll, 1989), it was expected that employees' satisfaction with eldercare tasks would buffer the negative relationship between eldercare demands and work performance, and that mental health would mediate this moderating effect. Data were collected from 165 employees providing in-home eldercare, as well as from one colleague and one family member of each employee. Results of mediated-moderation analyses supported the hypothesized model. The findings suggest that interventions that aim to increase employees' satisfaction with eldercare tasks may help protect employees from the negative effects of high eldercare demands on mental health and, subsequently, on work performance.

  11. Identifying the critical physical demanding tasks of paramedic work: Towards the development of a physical employment standard.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fischer, Steven L; Sinden, Kathryn E; MacPhee, Renee S

    2017-11-01

    Public safety related occupations including police, fire and military commonly apply physical employment standard (PES) to facilitate job matching, an approach to evaluate if candidates demonstrate acceptable physical capabilities as required to perform the job safely and effectively. In Canada, paramedics remain as one of the few public safety occupations without an evidence-based, validated PES. The purpose of this study was to document and describe the physical demands of paramedic work and to identify the most physically demanding tasks. These outcomes are essential to inform the design and development of an evidence-based PES for the paramedic sector. Physical demands of paramedic work were documented and described using a direct observation-based task analysis technique. Five paramedic's were trained to document the physical demands of their work, then applied their training to observe more than 90 calls over the course of 20 full 12-h work shifts. Physical demands data were then listed in a survey, administered service-wide, where 155 frontline paramedics identified critically demanding tasks and rank-ordered physical demands from not physically demanding to very strongly demanding. Critically important and physically demanding tasks were identified such as: transferring a patient; loading or unloading a stretcher in to or out of the ambulance; performing CPR; and, raising and lowering a stretcher. It is important that a paramedic-based PES evaluate a candidate's physical capabilities to perform the critical and physically demanding tasks identified in this study. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  12. The Use of Conjunctions in Cognitively Simple versus Complex Oral L2 Tasks

    Science.gov (United States)

    Michel, Marije C.

    2013-01-01

    The present study explores the use of conjunctions in simple versus complex argumentative tasks performed by second language (L2) learners as a specific measure for the amount of reasoning involved in task performance. The Cognition Hypothesis (Robinson, 2005) states that an increase in cognitive task complexity promotes improvements in L2…

  13. Perception and action de-coupling in congenital amusia: sensitivity to task demands.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Williamson, Victoria J; Liu, Fang; Peryer, Guy; Grierson, Mick; Stewart, Lauren

    2012-01-01

    Theories that purport the existence of a distinct auditory action stream have received support from the finding that individuals with congenital amusia, a disorder of pitch perception, are able to reproduce the direction of a pitch change that they are unable to identify (Loui, Guenther, Mathys, & Schlaug, 2008). Although this finding has proved influential in theorizing about the existence of an auditory action-stream, aspects of the original study warrant further investigation. The present report attempts to replicate the original study's findings across a sizeable cohort of individuals with amusia (n=14), obtaining action (production) and perception thresholds for pitch direction. In contrast to the original study, we find evidence of a double dissociation: while a minority of amusics had lower (better) thresholds for production compared to perception of pitch, more than half showed the reverse pattern. To explore the impact of task demands, perception thresholds were also measured using a two alternative, criterion-free, forced choice task that avoided labeling demands. Controls' thresholds were task-invariant while amusics' thresholds were significantly task-dependent. We argue that the direction and extent of a perception/production dissociation in this population reflects individual differences in the mapping of pitch representations to labels ("up"; "down") and to the vocal apparatus, as opposed to anything intrinsically yoked to perception or action per se. Copyright © 2011 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  14. Attentional Capture by Salient Distractors during Visual Search Is Determined by Temporal Task Demands

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Kiss, Monika; Grubert, Anna; Petersen, Anders

    2012-01-01

    The question whether attentional capture by salient but taskirrelevant visual stimuli is triggered in a bottom–up fashion or depends on top–down task settings is still unresolved. Strong support for bottom–up capture was obtained in the additional singleton task, in which search arrays were visible...... until response onset. Equally strong evidence for top–down control of attentional capture was obtained in spatial cueing experiments in which display durations were very brief. To demonstrate the critical role of temporal task demands on salience-driven attentional capture, we measured ERP indicators...... component that was followed by a late Pd component, suggesting that they triggered attentional capture, which was later replaced by location-specific inhibition. When search arrays were visible for only 200 msec, the distractor-elicited N2pc was eliminated and was replaced by a Pd component in the same time...

  15. The wandering self : Tracking distracting self-generated thought in a cognitively demanding context

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Huijser, Stefan; van Vugt, Marieke K; Taatgen, Niels A

    We investigated how self-referential processing (SRP) affected self-generated thought in a complex working memory task (CWM) to test the predictions of a computational cognitive model. This model described self-generated thought as resulting from competition between task- and distracting processes,

  16. Very low birth weight piglets show improved cognitive performance in the spatial cognitive holeboard task

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Alexandra eAntonides

    2015-02-01

    Full Text Available Low birth weight (LBW is common in humans and has been found to cause lasting cognitive and developmental deficits later in life. It is thought that the primary cause is intra-uterine growth restriction due to a shortage of oxygen and nutrients supply to the fetus. Pigs appear to be a good model animal to investigate long-term cognitive effects of LBW, as LBW is common in commercially farmed breeds of pigs. Moreover, pigs are developmentally similar to humans and can be trained to perform complex tasks. In this study, we trained ten very low birth weight (vLBW piglets and their ten normal birth weight (NBW siblings in a spatial cognitive holeboard task in order to investigate long-term cognitive effects of LBW. In this task, four out of sixteen holes contain a hidden food reward, which allows measuring working memory (short-term and reference memory (long-term in parallel. Piglets were trained for 46-54 trials during the acquisition phase, followed by a 20-trial reversal phase in which a different set of four holes was baited. Both groups acquired the task and improved their performance over time. A mixed model repeated measures ANOVA revealed that vLBW piglets showed a better reference memory performance than NBW piglets in both the acquisition and reversal phase. Additionally, the vLBW piglets fell back less in working memory scores than the NBW animals when switched to the reversal phase. These findings are contrary to findings in humans. Moreover, vLBW pigs had lower hair cortisol concentrations than NBW pigs in flank hair at 12 weeks of age. These results could indicate that restricted intra-uterine growth causes compensatory mechanisms to arise in early development that result in beneficial effects for vLBW piglets, increasing their low survival chances in early-life competition.

  17. Very low birth weight piglets show improved cognitive performance in the spatial cognitive holeboard task.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Antonides, Alexandra; Schoonderwoerd, Anne C; Nordquist, Rebecca E; van der Staay, Franz Josef

    2015-01-01

    Low birth weight (LBW) is common in humans and has been found to cause lasting cognitive and developmental deficits later in life. It is thought that the primary cause is intra-uterine growth restriction (IUGR) due to a shortage of oxygen and supply of nutrients to the fetus. Pigs appear to be a good model animal to investigate long-term cognitive effects of LBW, as LBW is common in commercially farmed breeds of pigs. Moreover, pigs are developmentally similar to humans and can be trained to perform complex tasks. In this study, we trained ten very low birth weight (vLBW) piglets and their ten normal birth weight (NBW) siblings in a spatial cognitive holeboard task in order to investigate long-term cognitive effects of LBW. In this task, four out of sixteen holes contain a hidden food reward, which allows measuring working memory (WM) (short-term memory) and reference memory (RM) (long-term memory) in parallel. Piglets were trained for 46-54 trials during the acquisition phase, followed by a 20-trial reversal phase in which a different set of four holes was baited. Both groups acquired the task and improved their performance over time. A mixed model repeated measures ANOVA revealed that vLBW piglets showed better RM performance than NBW piglets in both the acquisition and reversal phase. Additionally, WM scores in the vLBW were less disrupted than in the NBW animals when switched to the reversal phase. These findings are contrary to findings in humans. Moreover, vLBW pigs had lower hair cortisol concentrations (HCCs) than NBW pigs in flank hair at 12 weeks of age. These results could indicate that restricted intra-uterine growth causes compensatory mechanisms to arise in early development that result in beneficial effects for vLBW piglets, increasing their low survival chances in early-life competition.

  18. Observing prioritization effects on cognition and gait: The effect of increased cognitive load on cognitively healthy older adults' dual-task performance.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Maclean, Linda M; Brown, Laura J E; Khadra, H; Astell, Arlene J

    2017-03-01

    Previous studies exploring the effects of attention-prioritization on cognitively healthy older adults' gait and cognitive dual task (DT) performance have shown DT cost in gait outcomes but inconsistent effects on cognitive performance, which may reflect task difficulty (the cognitive load). This study aimed to identify whether changing the cognitive load during a walking and counting DT improved the challenge/sensitivity of the cognitive task to observe prioritization effects on concurrent gait and cognitive performance outcomes. Seventy-two cognitively healthy older adults (Mean=73years) walked 15m, counted backwards in 3s and 7s as single tasks (ST), and concurrently walked and counted backwards as DTs. Attention-prioritization was examined in Prioritizing Walking (PW) and Prioritizing Counting (PC) DT conditions. Dual-task performance costs (DTC) were calculated for number of correct cognitive responses (CCR) in the counting tasks, and step-time variability and velocity in the gait task. All DT conditions showed a benefit (DTB) for cognitive outcomes with trade-off cost to gait. In the Serial 3s task, the cognitive DTBs increased in PC over the PW condition (p<0.05), with a greater cost to walking velocity (p<0.05). DT effects were more pronounced in the Serial 7s with a lower cognitive DTB when PC than when PW, (p<0.05) with no trade-off increase in cost to gait outcomes (p<0.05). The findings suggest that increased cognitive load during a gait and cognitive DT produces more pronounced gait measures of attention-prioritization in cognitively healthy older adults. A cognitive load effect was also observed in the cognitive outcomes, with unexpected results. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  19. Individual Differences in Cognitive and Noncognitive Abilities and Team Performance in Dynamic Task Environments

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Doane, Stephanie

    2004-01-01

    The specific goal of this research was to examine the role of individual differences in cognitive and non-cognitive abilities on individual and team performance in a real-time dynamic team-task environment...

  20. A Cognitive Task Analysis for an Emergency Management Serious Game.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dass, Susan; Barnieu, Joanne; Cummings, Paul; Cid, Victor

    2016-01-01

    The Bethesda Hospitals' Emergency Preparedness Partnership identified a need to design training systems for hospital emergency management scenarios that included incident command situations. As part of this partnership, the National Library of Medicine (NLM) was challenged to develop an engaging, learner-centered simulation to specifically address hospital procedures for highly infectious diseases (HIDs) for multiple hospital roles. A serious game approach was selected for the simulation because collaborative (multiplayer) immersive, game-based simulations have been proven to generate realistic and engaging learning experiences and, when properly designed, can enhance training while minimizing cost compared to full-scale disaster exercises (Spain et al., 2013). Although substantial research effort has been put into design and evaluation of serious games, less time has been spent on developing sound instructional design methodologies to support serious game development. So how does one collect the appropriate, relevant, contextualized content and then align with serious game design elements? This paper describes how a cognitive task approach supported by a live demonstration with a think-aloud protocol was used to collect the rich psychomotor, procedural, and cognitive data necessary for the design of a serious game for handling HIDs. Furthermore, the paper presents a process to translate the collected data into meaningful content to support rapid prototyping. Recommendations for data collection and translation for a serious game close the paper.

  1. Cognitive and Physical Demands of Activities of Daily Living in Older Adults: Validation of Expert Panel Ratings

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Fong, Tamara G.; Gleason, Lauren J.; Wong, Bonnie; Habtemariam, Daniel; Jones, Richard N.; Schmitt, Eva M.; de Rooij, Sophia E.; Saczynski, Jane S.; Gross, Alden L.; Bean, Jonathan F.; Brown, Cynthia J.; Fick, Donna M.; Gruber-Baldini, Ann L.; O'Connor, Margaret; Tabloski, Patrica A.; Marcantonio, Edward R.; Inouye, Sharon K.

    2015-01-01

    Difficulties with performance of functional activities may result from cognitive and/or physical impairments. To date, there has not been a clear delineation of the physical and cognitive demands of activities of daily living. To quantify the relative physical and cognitive demands required to

  2. Intelligence is differentially related to neural effort in the task-positive and the task-negative brain network

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Basten, U.; Stelzel, C.; Fiebach, C.J.

    2013-01-01

    Previous studies on individual differences in intelligence and brain activation during cognitive processing focused on brain regions where activation increases with task demands (task-positive network, TPN). Our study additionally considers brain regions where activation decreases with task demands

  3. When global rule reversal meets local task switching: The neural mechanisms of coordinated behavioral adaptation to instructed multi-level demand changes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shi, Yiquan; Wolfensteller, Uta; Schubert, Torsten; Ruge, Hannes

    2018-02-01

    Cognitive flexibility is essential to cope with changing task demands and often it is necessary to adapt to combined changes in a coordinated manner. The present fMRI study examined how the brain implements such multi-level adaptation processes. Specifically, on a "local," hierarchically lower level, switching between two tasks was required across trials while the rules of each task remained unchanged for blocks of trials. On a "global" level regarding blocks of twelve trials, the task rules could reverse or remain the same. The current task was cued at the start of each trial while the current task rules were instructed before the start of a new block. We found that partly overlapping and partly segregated neural networks play different roles when coping with the combination of global rule reversal and local task switching. The fronto-parietal control network (FPN) supported the encoding of reversed rules at the time of explicit rule instruction. The same regions subsequently supported local task switching processes during actual implementation trials, irrespective of rule reversal condition. By contrast, a cortico-striatal network (CSN) including supplementary motor area and putamen was increasingly engaged across implementation trials and more so for rule reversal than for nonreversal blocks, irrespective of task switching condition. Together, these findings suggest that the brain accomplishes the coordinated adaptation to multi-level demand changes by distributing processing resources either across time (FPN for reversed rule encoding and later for task switching) or across regions (CSN for reversed rule implementation and FPN for concurrent task switching). © 2017 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  4. The effect of different cognitive domains on dual-task cost of gait in cognitive impaired elderly

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Lamoth, Claudine; Appels, Bregje; Van Campen, Jos

    2013-01-01

    Objective: For persons with dementia performance of a cognitive task during a motor task is associated with impaired gait stability and increased fall risk. While gait with and without dual tasking has often been the object studies, few studies have investigated the relationship between different

  5. The effect of preferred music on mood and performance in a high-cognitive demand occupation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lesiuk, Teresa

    2010-01-01

    Mild positive affect has been shown in the psychological literature to improve cognitive skills of creative problem-solving and systematic thinking. Individual preferred music listening offers opportunity for improved positive affect. The purpose of this study was to examine the effect of preferred music listening on state-mood and cognitive performance in a high-cognitive demand occupation. Twenty-four professional computer information systems developers (CISD) from a North American IT company participated in a 3-week study with a music/no music/music weekly design. During the music weeks, participants listened to their preferred music "when they wanted, as they wanted." Self-reports of State Positive Affect, State Negative Affect, and Cognitive Performance were measured throughout the 3 weeks. Results indicate a statistically significant improvement in both state-mood and cognitive performance scores. "High-cognitive demand" is a relative term given that challenges presented to individuals may occur on a cognitive continuum from need for focus and selective attention to systematic analysis and creative problem-solving. The findings and recommendations have important implications for music therapists in their knowledge of the effect of music on emotion and cognition, and, as well, have important implications for music therapy consultation to organizations.

  6. Age-related decrements in dual-task performance: Comparison of different mobility and cognitive tasks. A cross sectional study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brustio, Paolo Riccardo; Magistro, Daniele; Zecca, Massimiliano; Rabaglietti, Emanuela; Liubicich, Monica Emma

    2017-01-01

    This cross-sectional study investigated the age-related differences in dual-task performance both in mobility and cognitive tasks and the additive dual-task costs in a sample of older, middle-aged and young adults. 74 older adults (M = 72.63±5.57 years), 58 middle-aged adults (M = 46.69±4.68 years) and 63 young adults (M = 25.34±3.00 years) participated in the study. Participants performed different mobility and subtraction tasks under both single- and dual-task conditions. Linear regressions, repeated-measures and one-way analyses of covariance were used, The results showed: significant effects of the age on the dual and mobility tasks (ptask costs (pperformance under dual-task conditions in all groups (pperformance in the older group (ptask activity affected mobility and cognitive performance, especially in older adults who showed a higher dual-task cost, suggesting that dual-tasks activities are affected by the age and consequently also mobility and cognitive tasks are negatively influenced.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    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…

  8. Electrophysiological Repetition Effects in Persons with Mild Cognitive Impairment depend upon Working Memory Demand.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Broster, Lucas S; Jenkins, Shonna L; Holmes, Sarah D; Edwards, Matthew G; Jicha, Gregory A; Jiang, Yang

    2018-05-07

    Forms of implicit memory, including repetition effects, are preserved relative to explicit memory in clinical Alzheimer's disease. Consequently, cognitive interventions for persons with Alzheimer's disease have been developed that leverage this fact. However, despite the clinical robustness of behavioral repetition effects, altered neural mechanisms of repetition effects are studied as biomarkers of both clinical Alzheimer's disease and pre-morbid Alzheimer's changes in the brain. We hypothesized that the clinical preservation of behavioral repetition effects results in part from concurrent operation of discrete memory systems. We developed two experiments that included probes of emotional repetition effects differing in that one included an embedded working memory task. We found that neural repetition effects manifested in patients with amnestic mild cognitive impairment, the earliest form of clinical Alzheimer's disease, during emotional working memory tasks, but they did not manifest during the task that lacked the embedded working memory manipulation. Specifically, the working memory task evoked neural repetition effects in the P600 time-window, but the same neural mechanism was only minimally implicated in the task without a working memory component. We also found that group differences in behavioral repetition effects were smaller in the experiment with a working memory task. We suggest that cross-domain cognitive challenge can expose "defunct" neural capabilities of individuals with amnestic mild cognitive impairment. Copyright © 2018. Published by Elsevier Ltd.

  9. Increased alertness, better than posture prioritization, explains dual-task performance in prosthesis users and controls under increasing postural and cognitive challenge.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Howard, Charla L; Perry, Bonnie; Chow, John W; Wallace, Chris; Stokic, Dobrivoje S

    2017-11-01

    Sensorimotor impairments after limb amputation impose a threat to stability. Commonly described strategies for maintaining stability are the posture first strategy (prioritization of balance) and posture second strategy (prioritization of concurrent tasks). The existence of these strategies was examined in 13 below-knee prosthesis users and 15 controls during dual-task standing under increasing postural and cognitive challenge by evaluating path length, 95% sway area, and anterior-posterior and medial-lateral amplitudes of the center of pressure. The subjects stood on two force platforms under usual (hard surface/eyes open) and difficult (soft surface/eyes closed) conditions, first alone and while performing a cognitive task without and then with instruction on cognitive prioritization. During standing alone, sway was not significantly different between groups. After adding the cognitive task without prioritization instruction, prosthesis users increased sway more under the dual-task than single-task standing (p ≤ 0.028) during both usual and difficult conditions, favoring the posture second strategy. Controls, however, reduced dual-task sway under a greater postural challenge (p ≤ 0.017), suggesting the posture first strategy. With prioritization of the cognitive task, sway was unchanged or reduced in prosthesis users, suggesting departure from the posture second strategy, whereas controls maintained the posture first strategy. Individual analysis of dual tasking revealed that greater postural demand in controls and greater cognitive challenge in prosthesis users led to both reduced sway and improved cognitive performance, suggesting cognitive-motor facilitation. Thus, activation of additional resources through increased alertness, rather than posture prioritization, may explain dual-task performance in both prosthesis users and controls under increasing postural and cognitive challenge.

  10. Profiles of Cognitive-Motor Interference During Walking in Children: Does the Motor or the Cognitive Task Matter?

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Nadja Schott

    2018-06-01

    Full Text Available The evidence supporting the effects of age on the ability to coordinate a motor and a cognitive task show inconsistent results in children and adolescents, where the Dual-Task Effects (DTE – if computed at all – range from either being lower or comparable or higher in younger children than in older children, adolescents and adults. A feasible reason for the variability in such findings is the wide range of cognitive tasks (and to some extend of motor tasks used to study Cognitive-Motor Interference (CMI. Our study aims at determining the differences in CMI when performing cognitive tasks targeting different cognitive functions at varying walking pathways. 69 children and adolescents (boys, n = 45; girls, n = 24; mean age, 11.5 ± 1.50 years completed higher-level executive function tasks (2-Back, Serial Subtraction, Auditory Stroop, Clock Task, TMT-B in comparison to non-executive distracter tasks [Motor Response Task (MRT, TMT-A] to assess relative effects on gait during straight vs. repeated Change of Direction (COD walking. DT during COD walking was assessed using the Trail-Walking-Test (TWT. The motor and cognitive DTE were calculated for each task. There were significant differences between 5th and 8th graders on single gait speed on the straight (p = 0.016 and the COD pathway (p = 0.023, but not on any of the DT conditions. The calculation of DTEs revealed that motor DTEs were lowest for the MRT and highest for the TWT in the numbers/letters condition (p < 0.05 for all comparisons. In contrast, there were cognitive benefits for the higher-order cognitive tasks on the straight pathways, but cognitive costs for both DT conditions on the COD pathway (p < 0.01 for all comparisons. Our findings demonstrate that DT changes in walking when completing a secondary task that involve higher-level cognition are attributable to more than low-level divided attention or motor response processes. These results specifically show the direct competition

  11. Children's Behaviour and Cognitions across Different Balance Tasks

    Science.gov (United States)

    Messer, David J.; Pine, Karen J.; Butler, Cathal

    2008-01-01

    Children's understanding of the way objects balance has provided important insights about cognitive development [e.g., Karmiloff-Smith, A. (1992). "Beyond modularity: A developmental perspective on cognitive science." Cambridge, MA: MIT Press; Siegler, R. S. (1976). Three aspects of cognitive development. "Cognitive Psychology," 8, 481-520]. We…

  12. Performance of an attention-demanding task during treadmill walking shifts the noise qualities of step-to-step variation in step width.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Grabiner, Mark D; Marone, Jane R; Wyatt, Marilynn; Sessoms, Pinata; Kaufman, Kenton R

    2018-06-01

    The fractal scaling evident in the step-to-step fluctuations of stepping-related time series reflects, to some degree, neuromotor noise. The primary purpose of this study was to determine the extent to which the fractal scaling of step width, step width and step width variability are affected by performance of an attention-demanding task. We hypothesized that the attention-demanding task would shift the structure of the step width time series toward white, uncorrelated noise. Subjects performed two 10-min treadmill walking trials, a control trial of undisturbed walking and a trial during which they performed a mental arithmetic/texting task. Motion capture data was converted to step width time series, the fractal scaling of which were determined from their power spectra. Fractal scaling decreased by 22% during the texting condition (p Step width and step width variability increased 19% and five percent, respectively (p step width fractal scaling. The change of the fractal scaling of step width is consistent with increased cognitive demand and suggests a transition in the characteristics of the signal noise. This may reflect an important advance toward the understanding of the manner in which neuromotor noise contributes to some types of falls. However, further investigation of the repeatability of the results, the sensitivity of the results to progressive increases in cognitive load imposed by attention-demanding tasks, and the extent to which the results can be generalized to the gait of older adults seems warranted. Copyright © 2018 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  13. Reduced modulation of scanpaths in response to task demands in posterior cortical atrophy.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shakespeare, Timothy J; Pertzov, Yoni; Yong, Keir X X; Nicholas, Jennifer; Crutch, Sebastian J

    2015-02-01

    A difficulty in perceiving visual scenes is one of the most striking impairments experienced by patients with the clinico-radiological syndrome posterior cortical atrophy (PCA). However whilst a number of studies have investigated perception of relatively simple experimental stimuli in these individuals, little is known about multiple object and complex scene perception and the role of eye movements in posterior cortical atrophy. We embrace the distinction between high-level (top-down) and low-level (bottom-up) influences upon scanning eye movements when looking at scenes. This distinction was inspired by Yarbus (1967), who demonstrated how the location of our fixations is affected by task instructions and not only the stimulus' low level properties. We therefore examined how scanning patterns are influenced by task instructions and low-level visual properties in 7 patients with posterior cortical atrophy, 8 patients with typical Alzheimer's disease, and 19 healthy age-matched controls. Each participant viewed 10 scenes under four task conditions (encoding, recognition, search and description) whilst eye movements were recorded. The results reveal significant differences between groups in the impact of test instructions upon scanpaths. Across tasks without a search component, posterior cortical atrophy patients were significantly less consistent than typical Alzheimer's disease patients and controls in where they were looking. By contrast, when comparing search and non-search tasks, it was controls who exhibited lowest between-task similarity ratings, suggesting they were better able than posterior cortical atrophy or typical Alzheimer's disease patients to respond appropriately to high-level needs by looking at task-relevant regions of a scene. Posterior cortical atrophy patients had a significant tendency to fixate upon more low-level salient parts of the scenes than controls irrespective of the viewing task. The study provides a detailed characterisation of

  14. An update of the Canadian initiatives of IEA Task 13 : demand response resources

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Malme, R. |; International Energy Agency, Paris

    2006-01-01

    The International Energy Agency Demand Side Management (IEA DSM) program is an international collaboration with 17 IEA member countries and the European Commission. The program aims to clarify and promote opportunities for DSM through load management, energy efficiency and strategic conservation. Task 13 of the program is charged with reviewing demand response resource (DRR) practices in various markets around the world and developing recommendations and tools for integrating DRR into regular market activities. The Ontario Power Authority (OPA), National Research Council (NRC) and CEA Technologies Inc. (CEATI) are leading participation in Task 13 in Canada. The team is currently collecting market information as well as creating tools to provide references to activities in other markets. This presentation reviewed the team's subtasks, which include: the development of DR market benchmarks and translation methods; the collection of DR consumer surveys and utilization methods; the creation of a DR market potential calculator to provide estimates for generating target marketing strategies; the creation of a valuation guide for technical users, administrators and regulators; a catalogue describing the technologies and systems that are available for use in DR programs; identifying market barriers; and the creation of a web portal that will be a virtual centre of excellence concerning DR methods, technologies and applications. DR programs in Norway, Finland, the Netherlands were also reviewed. refs., tabs., figs

  15. Spatial working memory in aging and mild cognitive impairment: effects of task load and contextual cueing.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kessels, Roy P C; Meulenbroek, Olga; Fernández, Guillén; Olde Rikkert, Marcel G M

    2010-09-01

    Mild Cognitive Impairment (MCI) is characterized by episodic memory deficits, while aspects of working memory may also be implicated, but studies into this latter domain are scarce and results are inconclusive. Using a computerized search paradigm, this study compares 25 young adults, 25 typically aging older adults and 15 amnestic MCI patients as to their working-memory capacities for object-location information and potential differential effects of memory load and additional context cues. An age-related deficit in visuospatial working-memory maintenance was found that became more pronounced with increasing task demands. The MCI group additionally showed reduced maintenance of bound information, i.e., object-location associations, again especially at elevated memory load. No effects of contextual cueing were found. The current findings indicate that working memory should be considered when screening patients for suspected MCI and monitoring its progression.

  16. Motor-cognitive dual-task performance: effects of a concurrent motor task on distinct components of visual processing capacity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Künstler, E C S; Finke, K; Günther, A; Klingner, C; Witte, O; Bublak, P

    2018-01-01

    Dual tasking, or the simultaneous execution of two continuous tasks, is frequently associated with a performance decline that can be explained within a capacity sharing framework. In this study, we assessed the effects of a concurrent motor task on the efficiency of visual information uptake based on the 'theory of visual attention' (TVA). TVA provides parameter estimates reflecting distinct components of visual processing capacity: perceptual threshold, visual processing speed, and visual short-term memory (VSTM) storage capacity. Moreover, goodness-of-fit values and bootstrapping estimates were derived to test whether the TVA-model is validly applicable also under dual task conditions, and whether the robustness of parameter estimates is comparable in single- and dual-task conditions. 24 subjects of middle to higher age performed a continuous tapping task, and a visual processing task (whole report of briefly presented letter arrays) under both single- and dual-task conditions. Results suggest a decline of both visual processing capacity and VSTM storage capacity under dual-task conditions, while the perceptual threshold remained unaffected by a concurrent motor task. In addition, goodness-of-fit values and bootstrapping estimates support the notion that participants processed the visual task in a qualitatively comparable, although quantitatively less efficient way under dual-task conditions. The results support a capacity sharing account of motor-cognitive dual tasking and suggest that even performing a relatively simple motor task relies on central attentional capacity that is necessary for efficient visual information uptake.

  17. Cognitive Load Theory: An Empirical Study of Anxiety and Task Performance in Language Learning

    Science.gov (United States)

    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…

  18. The effect of caffeine on cognitive task performance and motor fatigue

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    van Duinen, Hiske; Lorist, Monicque M.; Zijdewind, Inge

    Rationale: In everyday life, people are usually capable of performing two tasks simultaneously. However, in a previous study we showed that during a fatiguing motor task, cognitive performance declined progressively. There is extensive literature on the ( positive) effects of caffeine on cognitive

  19. Perseverative Cognition as an Explanatory Mechanism in the Relation Between Job Demands and Sleep Quality.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Van Laethem, Michelle; Beckers, Debby G J; Geurts, Sabine A E; Garefelt, Johanna; Magnusson Hanson, Linda L; Leineweber, Constanze

    2018-04-01

    The aim of this longitudinal three-wave study was to examine (i) reciprocal associations among job demands, work-related perseverative cognition (PC), and sleep quality; (ii) PC as a mediator in-between job demands and sleep quality; and (iii) continuous high job demands in relation to sleep quality and work-related PC over time. A representative sample of the Swedish working population was approached in 2010, 2012, and 2014, and 2316 respondents were included in this longitudinal full-panel survey study. Structural equation modelling was performed to analyse the temporal relations between job demands, work-related PC, and sleep quality. Additionally, a subsample (N = 1149) consisting of individuals who reported the same level of exposure to job demands during all three waves (i.e. stable high, stable moderate, or stable low job demands) was examined in relation to PC and sleep quality over time. Analyses showed that job demands, PC, and poor sleep quality were positively and reciprocally related. Work-related PC mediated the normal and reversed, direct across-wave relations between job demands and sleep quality. Individuals with continuous high job demands reported significantly lower sleep quality and higher work-related PC, compared to individuals with continuous moderate/low job demands. This study substantiated reciprocal relations between job demands, work-related PC, and sleep quality and supported work-related PC as an underlying mechanism of the reciprocal job demands-sleep relationship. Moreover, this study showed that chronically high job demands are a risk factor for low sleep quality.

  20. Does Lesson Study contribute to activating and cognitively demanding teaching behavior? A single case study

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    de Vries, Siebrich; Roorda, Gerrit

    2015-01-01

    Activating and cognitively demanding teaching behavior is problematic for many teachers in Dutch secondary education, in particular for the less experienced advanced beginners. In the context of a Professional Learning Community (PLC) for both less and more experienced teachers of mathematics,

  1. Cognitive Load and Attentional Demands during Objects' Position Change in Real and Digital Environments

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zacharis, Georgios K.; Mikropoulos, Tassos Anastasios; Kalyvioti, Katerina

    2016-01-01

    Studies showed that two-dimensional (2D) and three-dimensional (3D) educational content contributes to learning. Although there were many studies with 3D stereoscopic learning environments, only a few studies reported on the differences between real, 2D, and 3D scenes, as far as cognitive load and attentional demands were concerned. We used…

  2. Influence of Sequential vs. Simultaneous Dual-Task Exercise Training on Cognitive Function in Older Adults.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tait, Jamie L; Duckham, Rachel L; Milte, Catherine M; Main, Luana C; Daly, Robin M

    2017-01-01

    Emerging research indicates that exercise combined with cognitive training may improve cognitive function in older adults. Typically these programs have incorporated sequential training, where exercise and cognitive training are undertaken separately. However, simultaneous or dual-task training, where cognitive and/or motor training are performed simultaneously with exercise, may offer greater benefits. This review summary provides an overview of the effects of combined simultaneous vs. sequential training on cognitive function in older adults. Based on the available evidence, there are inconsistent findings with regard to the cognitive benefits of sequential training in comparison to cognitive or exercise training alone. In contrast, simultaneous training interventions, particularly multimodal exercise programs in combination with secondary tasks regulated by sensory cues, have significantly improved cognition in both healthy older and clinical populations. However, further research is needed to determine the optimal characteristics of a successful simultaneous training program for optimizing cognitive function in older people.

  3. Activity flow over resting-state networks shapes cognitive task activations.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cole, Michael W; Ito, Takuya; Bassett, Danielle S; Schultz, Douglas H

    2016-12-01

    Resting-state functional connectivity (FC) has helped reveal the intrinsic network organization of the human brain, yet its relevance to cognitive task activations has been unclear. Uncertainty remains despite evidence that resting-state FC patterns are highly similar to cognitive task activation patterns. Identifying the distributed processes that shape localized cognitive task activations may help reveal why resting-state FC is so strongly related to cognitive task activations. We found that estimating task-evoked activity flow (the spread of activation amplitudes) over resting-state FC networks allowed prediction of cognitive task activations in a large-scale neural network model. Applying this insight to empirical functional MRI data, we found that cognitive task activations can be predicted in held-out brain regions (and held-out individuals) via estimated activity flow over resting-state FC networks. This suggests that task-evoked activity flow over intrinsic networks is a large-scale mechanism explaining the relevance of resting-state FC to cognitive task activations.

  4. Development of a Cognitive Robotic System for Simple Surgical Tasks

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Riccardo Muradore

    2015-04-01

    Full Text Available The introduction of robotic surgery within the operating rooms has significantly improved the quality of many surgical procedures. Recently, the research on medical robotic systems focused on increasing the level of autonomy in order to give them the possibility to carry out simple surgical actions autonomously. This paper reports on the development of technologies for introducing automation within the surgical workflow. The results have been obtained during the ongoing FP7 European funded project Intelligent Surgical Robotics (I-SUR. The main goal of the project is to demonstrate that autonomous robotic surgical systems can carry out simple surgical tasks effectively and without major intervention by surgeons. To fulfil this goal, we have developed innovative solutions (both in terms of technologies and algorithms for the following aspects: fabrication of soft organ models starting from CT images, surgical planning and execution of movement of robot arms in contact with a deformable environment, designing a surgical interface minimizing the cognitive load of the surgeon supervising the actions, intra-operative sensing and reasoning to detect normal transitions and unexpected events. All these technologies have been integrated using a component-based software architecture to control a novel robot designed to perform the surgical actions under study. In this work we provide an overview of our system and report on preliminary results of the automatic execution of needle insertion for the cryoablation of kidney tumours.

  5. Associations of job demands and intelligence with cognitive performance among men in late life.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Potter, Guy G; Helms, Michael J; Plassman, Brenda L

    2008-05-06

    To examine the association of job characteristics and intelligence to cognitive status in members of the National Academy of Sciences-National Research Council Twins Registry of World War II veterans. Participants (n = 1,036) included individuals with an assessment of intelligence based on Armed Services testing in early adulthood. In late adulthood, these individuals completed the modified Telephone Interview for Cognitive Status (TICS-m) and occupational history as part of an epidemiologic study of aging and dementia. Occupational history was coded to produce a matrix of job characteristics. Based on factor analysis, job characteristics were interpreted as reflecting general intellectual demands (GI), human interaction and communication (HC), physical activity (PA), and visual attention (VA). Based on regression analysis of TICS-m score covarying for age, intelligence, and years of education, higher levels of GI and HC were independently associated with higher TICS-m performance, whereas higher PA was independently associated with lower performance. There was an interaction of GI and intelligence, indicating that individuals at the lower range of intellectual aptitude in early adulthood derived greater cognitive benefit from intellectually demanding work. Intellectually demanding work was associated with greater benefit to cognitive performance in later life independent of related factors like education and intelligence. The fact that individuals with lower intellectual aptitude demonstrated a stronger positive association between work and higher cognitive performance during retirement suggests that behavior may enhance intellectual reserve, perhaps even years after peak intellectual activity.

  6. Does conflict help or hurt cognitive control? Initial evidence for an inverted U-shape relationship between perceived task difficulty and conflict adaptation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    van Steenbergen, Henk; Band, Guido P H; Hommel, Bernhard

    2015-01-01

    Sequential modulation of congruency effects in conflict tasks indicates that cognitive control quickly adapts to changing task demands. We investigated in four experiments how this behavioral congruency-sequence effect relates to different levels of perceived task difficulty in a flanker and a Stroop task. In addition, online measures of pupil diameter were used as a physiological index of effort mobilization. Consistent with motivational accounts predicting that increased levels of perceived task difficulty will increase effort mobilization only up to a certain limit, reliable dynamic conflict-driven adjustment in cognitive control was only observed when task difficulty was relatively low. Instead, tasks tentatively associated with high levels of difficulty showed no or reversed conflict adaptation. Although the effects could not be linked consistently to effects in self-reported task difficulty in all experiments, regression analyses showed associations between perceived task difficulty and conflict adaptation in some of the experiments, which provides some initial evidence for an inverted U-shape relationship between perceived difficulty and adaptations in cognitive control. Furthermore, high levels of task difficulty were associated with a conflict-driven reduction in pupil dilation, suggesting that pupil dilation can be used as a physiological marker of mental overload. Our findings underscore the importance of developing models that are grounded in motivational accounts of cognitive control.

  7. Does conflict help or hurt cognitive control? Initial evidence for an inverted U-shape relationship between perceived task difficulty and conflict adaptation

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Henk eVan Steenbergen

    2015-07-01

    Full Text Available Sequential modulation of congruency effects in conflict tasks indicates that cognitive control quickly adapts to changing task demands. We investigated in four experiments how this behavioral congruency-sequence effect relates to different levels of perceived task difficulty in a flanker and a Stroop task. In addition, online measures of pupil diameter were used as a physiological index of effort mobilization. Consistent with motivational accounts predicting that increased levels of perceived task difficulty will increase effort mobilization only up to a certain limit, reliable dynamic conflict-driven adjustment in cognitive control was only observed when task difficulty was relatively low. Instead, tasks tentatively associated with high levels of difficulty showed no or reversed conflict adaptation. Although the effects could not be linked consistently to effects in self-reported task difficulty in all experiments, regression analyses showed associations between perceived task difficulty and conflict adaptation in some of the experiments, which provides some initial evidence for an inverted U-shape relationship between perceived difficulty and adaptations in cognitive control. Furthermore, high levels of task difficulty were associated with a conflict-driven reduction in pupil dilation, suggesting that pupil dilation can be used as a physiological marker of mental overload. Our findings underscore the importance of developing models that are grounded in motivational accounts of cognitive control.

  8. Exploring the Relationship of Task Performance and Physical and Cognitive Fatigue During a Daylong Light Precision Task.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yung, Marcus; Manji, Rahim; Wells, Richard P

    2017-11-01

    Our aim was to explore the relationship between fatigue and operation system performance during a simulated light precision task over an 8-hr period using a battery of physical (central and peripheral) and cognitive measures. Fatigue may play an important role in the relationship between poor ergonomics and deficits in quality and productivity. However, well-controlled laboratory studies in this area have several limitations, including the lack of work relevance of fatigue exposures and lack of both physical and cognitive measures. There remains a need to understand the relationship between physical and cognitive fatigue and task performance at exposure levels relevant to realistic production or light precision work. Errors and fatigue measures were tracked over the course of a micropipetting task. Fatigue responses from 10 measures and errors in pipetting technique, precision, and targeting were submitted to principal component analysis to descriptively analyze features and patterns. Fatigue responses and error rates contributed to three principal components (PCs), accounting for 50.9% of total variance. Fatigue responses grouped within the three PCs reflected central and peripheral upper extremity fatigue, postural sway, and changes in oculomotor behavior. In an 8-hr light precision task, error rates shared similar patterns to both physical and cognitive fatigue responses, and/or increases in arousal level. The findings provide insight toward the relationship between fatigue and operation system performance (e.g., errors). This study contributes to a body of literature documenting task errors and fatigue, reflecting physical (both central and peripheral) and cognitive processes.

  9. Rational Adaptation under Task and Processing Constraints: Implications for Testing Theories of Cognition and Action

    Science.gov (United States)

    Howes, Andrew; Lewis, Richard L.; Vera, Alonso

    2009-01-01

    The authors assume that individuals adapt rationally to a utility function given constraints imposed by their cognitive architecture and the local task environment. This assumption underlies a new approach to modeling and understanding cognition--cognitively bounded rational analysis--that sharpens the predictive acuity of general, integrated…

  10. Methodological recommendations for cognition trials in bipolar disorder by the International Society for Bipolar Disorders Targeting Cognition Task Force

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Miskowiak, K W; Burdick, K E; Martinez-Aran, A

    2017-01-01

    OBJECTIVES: To aid the development of treatment for cognitive impairment in bipolar disorder, the International Society for Bipolar Disorders (ISBD) convened a task force to create a consensus-based guidance paper for the methodology and design of cognition trials in bipolar disorder. METHODS...... symptoms and concomitant medication. Task force recommendations are to: (i) enrich trials with objectively measured cognitively impaired patients; (ii) generally select a broad cognitive composite score as the primary outcome and a functional measure as a key secondary outcome; and (iii) include remitted...... of treatments to illness stage and using a multimodal approach. CONCLUSIONS: This ISBD task force guidance paper provides the first consensus-based recommendations for cognition trials in bipolar disorder. Adherence to these recommendations will likely improve the sensitivity in detecting treatment efficacy...

  11. Demographic Variables and Selective, Sustained Attention and Planning through Cognitive Tasks among Healthy Adults

    OpenAIRE

    Afsaneh Zarghi; Zali; A; Tehranidost; M; Mohammad Reza Zarindast; Ashrafi; F; Doroodgar; Khodadadi

    2011-01-01

    Introduction: Cognitive tasks are considered to be applicable and appropriate in assessing cognitive domains. The purpose of our study is to determine the relationship existence between variables of age, sex and education with selective, sustained attention and planning abilities by means of computerized cognitive tasks among healthy adults. Methods: A cross-sectional study was implemented during 6 months from June to November, 2010 on 84 healthy adults (42 male and 42 female). The whole part...

  12. System structure and cognitive ability as predictors of performance in dynamic system control tasks

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jan Hundertmark

    2015-12-01

    Full Text Available In dynamic system control, cognitive mechanisms and abilities underlying performance may vary depending on the nature of the task. We therefore investigated the effects of system structure and its interaction with cognitive abilities on system control performance. A sample of 127 university students completed a series of different system control tasks that were manipulated in terms of system size and recurrent feedback, either with or without a cognitive load manipulation. Cognitive abilities assessed included reasoning ability, working memory capacity, and cognitive reflection. System size and recurrent feedback affected overall performance as expected. Overall, the results support that cognitive ability is a good predictor of performance in dynamic system control tasks but predictiveness is reduced when the system structure contains recurrent feedback. We discuss this finding from a cognitive processing perspective as well as its implications for individual differences research in dynamic systems.

  13. Cognitive evaluation by tasks in a virtual reality environment in multiple sclerosis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lamargue-Hamel, Delphine; Deloire, Mathilde; Saubusse, Aurore; Ruet, Aurélie; Taillard, Jacques; Philip, Pierre; Brochet, Bruno

    2015-12-15

    The assessment of cognitive impairment in multiple sclerosis (MS) requires large neuropsychological batteries that assess numerous domains. The relevance of these assessments to daily cognitive functioning is not well established. Cognitive ecological evaluation has not been frequently studied in MS. The aim of this study was to determine the interest of cognitive evaluation in a virtual reality environment in a sample of persons with MS with cognitive deficits. Thirty persons with MS with at least moderate cognitive impairment were assessed with two ecological evaluations, an in-house developed task in a virtual reality environment (Urban DailyCog®) and a divided attention task in a driving simulator. Classical neuropsychological testing was also used. Fifty-two percent of the persons with MS failed the driving simulator task and 80% failed the Urban DailyCog®. Virtual reality assessments are promising in identifying cognitive impairment in MS. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  14. How Do Clinical Information Systems Affect the Cognitive Demands of General Practitioners?: Usability Study with a Focus on Cognitive Workload

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ferran Ariza

    2015-11-01

    Full Text Available Background Clinical information systems in the National Health Service do not need to conform to any explicit usability requirements. Poor usability can increase the mental workload experienced by clinicians and cause fatigue, increase error rates and impact the overall patient safety. Mental workload can be used as a measure of usability.Objective To assess the subjective cognitive workload experienced by general practitioners (GPs with their systems. To raise awareness of the importance of usability in system design among users, designers, developers and policymakers.Methods We used a modified version of the NASA Task Load Index, adapted for web. We developed a set of common clinical scenarios and computer tasks on an online survey. We emailed the study link to 199 clinical commissioning groups and 1,646 GP practices in England. Results Sixty-seven responders completed the survey. The respondents had spent an average of 17 years in general practice, had experience of using a mean of 1.5 GP computer systems and had used their current system for a mean time of 6.7 years. The mental workload score was not different among systems. There were significant differences among the task scores, but these differences were not specific to particular systems. The overall score and task scores were related to the length of experience with their present system. Conclusion Four tasks imposed a higher mental workload on GPs: ‘repeat prescribing’, ‘find episode’, ‘drug management’ and ‘overview records’. Further usability studies on GP systems should focus on these tasks. Users, policymakers, designers and developers should remain aware of the importance of usability in system design.What does this study add?• Current GP systems in England do not need to conform to explicit usability requirements. Poor usability can increase the mental workload of clinicians and lead to errors.• Some clinical computer tasks incur more cognitive workload

  15. Dual-task performance involving hand dexterity and cognitive tasks and daily functioning in people with schizophrenia: a pilot study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lin, Keh-chung; Wu, Yi-fang; Chen, I-chen; Tsai, Pei-luen; Wu, Ching-yi; Chen, Chia-ling

    2015-01-01

    This study investigated separate and concurrent performance on cognitive and hand dexterity tasks and the relationship to daily functioning in 16 people with schizophrenia and 16 healthy control participants. Participants performed the Purdue Pegboard Test and the Serial Seven Subtraction Test under single- and dual-task conditions and completed two daily functioning evaluations. The hand dexterity of all participants declined in the dual-task condition, but the discrepancy between single-task and dual-task hand dexterity was greater in the schizophrenia group than in the control group (p.70, for all). The extent of discrepancy in hand dexterity was negatively correlated with daily functioning in the schizophrenia group (rs=-.3 to -.5, ps=.04-.26). Ability to perform dual tasks may be an indicator of daily functioning in people with schizophrenia. Use of dual-task training may be considered as a therapeutic activity with these clients. Copyright © 2015 by the American Occupational Therapy Association, Inc.

  16. Improved proprioceptive function by application of subsensory electrical noise: Effects of aging and task-demand.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Toledo, Diana R; Barela, José A; Kohn, André F

    2017-09-01

    The application of subsensory noise stimulation over the lower limbs has been shown to improve proprioception and postural control under certain conditions. Whereas the effect specificity seems to depend on several factors, studies are still needed to determine the appropriate method for training and rehabilitation purposes. In the current study, we investigated whether the application of subsensory electrical noise over the legs improves proprioceptive function in young and older adults. We aimed to provide evidence that stronger and age-related differential effects occur in more demanding tasks. Proprioceptive function was initially assessed by testing the detection of passive ankle movement (kinesthetic perception) in twenty-eight subjects (14 young and 14 older adults). Thereafter, postural control was assessed during tasks with different sensory challenges: i) by removing visual information (eyes closed) and; ii) by moving the visual scene (moving room paradigm). Tests performed with the application of electrical noise stimulation were compared to those performed without noise. The results showed that electrical noise applied over the legs led to a reduction in the response time to kinesthetic perception in both young and older adults. On the other hand, the magnitude of postural sway was reduced by noise stimulation only during a more challenging task, namely, when the optical flow was changing in an unpredictable (nonperiodic) manner. No differential effects of stimulation between groups were observed. These findings suggest that the relevance of proprioceptive inputs in tasks with different challenges, but not the subjects' age, is a determining factor for sensorimotor improvements due to electrical noise stimulation. Copyright © 2017 IBRO. Published by Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  17. Intensifying the Dominant Response II: Nonconscious Negative Affect, Cognitive Demand, and Conversations.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Monahan, Jennifer L.; Laliker, Melanie

    2002-01-01

    Examines mechanisms that may account for why evaluations made by participants involved in conversations are more influenced by subliminal negative cues than are evaluations made by observers. Explains three studies in which subliminal priming tasks were used with differing cognitive loads and self-preservation concerns among a group of…

  18. Disengagement from tasks as a function of cognitive load and depressive symptom severity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bowie, Christopher R; Milanovic, Melissa; Tran, Tanya; Cassidy, Sarah

    2017-01-01

    Depression is associated with impairment in cognition and everyday functioning. Mechanisms of cognitive dysfunction in depression and the factors that influence strategic deployment of cognitive abilities in complex environments remain elusive. In this study we investigated whether depression symptom severity is associated with disengagement from a working memory task (Paced Auditory Serial Addition Task; PASAT) with parametric adjustment of task difficulty. 235 participants completed the Beck Depression Inventory, low and high cognitive load conditions of the PASAT, and quality of life. Cognitive disengagement was the sum of consecutive items in which participants did not proffer a response to the trial. Individuals with higher depression severity showed more cognitive disengagement on the high but not low cognitive load trial of the PASAT; they did not differ in number of correct responses. Increased disengagement from the low to high cognitive load was associated with more impaired quality of life. Depression severity is associated with increased disengagement from tasks as difficulty increases. These findings suggest the importance of measuring how cognitive skills are avoided in complex environments in addition to considering performance accuracy. Individuals with depressive symptoms might preferentially avoid cognitive tasks that are perceived as more complex in spite of intact ability.

  19. Relationship between Age Cognitive Decline and Performance of Cognitive Motor Tasks in Seniors

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jiří Mudrák

    2015-03-01

    Full Text Available Relationship between Age Cognitive Decline and Performance of Cognitive Motor Tasks in Seniors Relationship between the age-related cognitive decline and decline in cognitive processing speed, in a variety of cognitive motor tasks was examined. The sample consisted of 33 well-adjusted older adults (on average 68 years old, recruited from several physical activity programs. The participants performed five cognitive tests selected from the Vienna test system battery. Subsequently, the relationship of their age and the measures of cognitive function was analyzed. It was found that the age of respondents was related only to their performance in complex tasks which included a processing speed component. The participant’s performance in simple tasks and in measures unaffected by processing speed was unrelated to age. Results are consistent with the processing speed theory of adult age differences in cognition (Salthouse, 1996. Furthermore, the performance in complex cognitive tasks was influenced by the level of participation in leisure physical activities; this suggests that physically active lifestyle may limit the impact of age on cognitive function. Stárnutí a rychlost zpracování kognitivních funkcí V předkládáné studii se zabýváme některými aspekty věkem podmíněného úbytku kognitivních funkcí. Konkrétně zkoumáme předpoklady vycházející z teorie rychlosti zpracování (Salthouse, 1996 týkající se toho, že věkem podmíněný pokles kognitivních funkcí je dán především poklesem rychlosti kognitivních procesů, což se projevuje především u komplexních kognitivních úkolů. Vzorek v naší studii se skládal z 33 seniorů a seniorek (průměrný věk byl 68 let, které jsme oslovili prostřednictvím několika programů pro seniory. Respondenti byli testováni prostřednictvím pěti testů kognitivních funkcí, které jsme vybrali z testové baterie Vienna test systém. Následně jsme analyzovali

  20. Higher balance task demands are associated with an increase in individual alpha peak frequency

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Thorben eHülsdünker

    2016-01-01

    Full Text Available Balance control is fundamental for most daily motor activities, and its impairment is associated with an increased risk of falling. Growing evidence suggests the human cortex is essentially contributing to the control of standing balance. However, the exact mechanisms remain unclear and need further investigation. In a previous study we introduced a new protocol to identify electrocortical activity associated with performance of different continuous balance tasks with the eyes opened. The aim of this study was to extend our previous results by investigating the individual alpha peak frequency (iAPF, a neurophysiological marker of thalamo-cortical information transmission, which remained unconsidered so far in balance research. Thirty-seven subjects completed nine balance tasks varying in surface stability and base of support. Electroencephalography (EEG was recorded from 32 scalp locations throughout balancing with the eyes closed to ensure reliable identification of the iAPF. Balance performance was quantified as the sum of anterior-posterior and medio-lateral movements of the supporting platform. The iAPF, as well as power in the theta, lower alpha and upper alpha frequency bands were determined for each balance task after applying an ICA-based artifact rejection procedure. Higher demands on balance control were associated with a global increase in iAPF and a decrease in lower alpha power. These results may indicate increased thalamo-cortical information transfer and general cortical activation, respectively. In addition, a significant increase in upper alpha activity was observed in the fronto-central region whereas it decreased in the centro-parietal region. Furthermore, midline theta increased with higher task demands probably indicating activation of error detection/processing mechanisms. IAPF as well as theta and alpha power were correlated with platform movements. The results provide new insights into spectral and spatial characteristics

  1. Chaotic home environment is associated with reduced infant processing speed under high task demands.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tomalski, Przemysław; Marczuk, Karolina; Pisula, Ewa; Malinowska, Anna; Kawa, Rafał; Niedźwiecka, Alicja

    2017-08-01

    Early adversity has profound long-term consequences for child development across domains. The effects of early adversity on structural and functional brain development were shown for infants under 12 months of life. However, the causal mechanisms of these effects remain relatively unexplored. Using a visual habituation task we investigated whether chaotic home environment may affect processing speed in 5.5 month-old infants (n=71). We found detrimental effects of chaos on processing speed for complex but not for simple visual stimuli. No effects of socio-economic status on infant processing speed were found although the sample was predominantly middle class. Our results indicate that chaotic early environment may adversely affect processing speed in early infancy, but only when greater cognitive resources need to be deployed. The study highlights an attractive avenue for research on the mechanisms linking home environment with the development of attention control. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  2. Modulation of the electrophysiological correlates of retrieval cue processing by the specificity of task demands.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Johnson, Jeffrey D; Rugg, Michael D

    2006-02-03

    Retrieval orientation refers to the differential processing of retrieval cues according to the type of information sought from memory (e.g., words vs. pictures). In the present study, event-related potentials (ERPs) were employed to investigate whether the neural correlates of differential retrieval orientations are sensitive to the specificity of the retrieval demands of the test task. In separate study-test phases, subjects encoded lists of intermixed words and pictures, and then undertook one of two retrieval tests, in both of which the retrieval cues were exclusively words. In the recognition test, subjects performed 'old/new' discriminations on the test items, and old items corresponded to only one class of studied material (words or pictures). In the exclusion test, old items corresponded to both classes of study material, and subjects were required to respond 'old' only to test items corresponding to a designated class of material. Thus, demands for retrieval specificity were greater in the exclusion test than during recognition. ERPs elicited by correctly classified new items in the two types of test were contrasted according to whether words or pictures were the sought-for material. Material-dependent ERP effects were evident in both tests, but the effects onset earlier and offset later in the exclusion test. The findings suggest that differential processing of retrieval cues, and hence the adoption of differential retrieval orientations, varies according to the specificity of the retrieval goal.

  3. Dual-Task Interference: The Effects of Verbal Cognitive Tasks on Upright Postural Stability in Parkinson's Disease

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    J. D. Holmes

    2010-01-01

    Full Text Available Although dual-task interference has previously been demonstrated to have a significant effect on postural control among individuals with Parkinson's disease, the impact of speech complexity on postural control has not been demonstrated using quantitative biomechanical measures. The postural stability of twelve participants with idiopathic Parkinson's disease and twelve healthy age-matched controls was evaluated under three conditions: (1 without a secondary task, (2 performing a rote repetition task and (3 generating a monologue. Results suggested a significant effect of cognitive load on biomechanical parameters of postural stability. Although both groups increased their postural excursion, individuals with Parkinson's disease demonstrated significantly reduced excursion as compared with that of healthy age-matched controls. This suggests that participants with Parkinson's disease may be overconstraining their postural adjustments in order to focus attention on the cognitive tasks without losing their balance. Ironically, this overconstraint may place the participant at greater risk for a fall.

  4. Methodological recommendations for cognition trials in bipolar disorder by the International Society for Bipolar Disorders Targeting Cognition Task Force

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Miskowiak, K W; Burdick, K E; Martinez-Aran, A

    2017-01-01

    OBJECTIVES: To aid the development of treatment for cognitive impairment in bipolar disorder, the International Society for Bipolar Disorders (ISBD) convened a task force to create a consensus-based guidance paper for the methodology and design of cognition trials in bipolar disorder. METHODS...... of treatments to illness stage and using a multimodal approach. CONCLUSIONS: This ISBD task force guidance paper provides the first consensus-based recommendations for cognition trials in bipolar disorder. Adherence to these recommendations will likely improve the sensitivity in detecting treatment efficacy...

  5. Cognitive Modeling and Task Analysis: Basic Processes and Individual Differences

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Ackerman, Phillip

    1999-01-01

    ... in a complex-skill environment. The subset of task conditions selected were those that involve basic processes of working memory, task monitoring, and differential loads on spatial reasoning and speed of perceiving...

  6. Functional mobility in a divided attention task in older adults with cognitive impairment.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Borges, Sheila de Melo; Radanovic, Márcia; Forlenza, Orestes Vicente

    2015-01-01

    Motor disorders may occur in mild cognitive impairment (MCI) and at early stages of Alzheimer's disease (AD), particularly under divided attention conditions. We examined functional mobility in 104 older adults (42 with MCI, 26 with mild AD, and 36 cognitively healthy) using the Timed Up and Go test (TUG) under 4 experimental conditions: TUG single task, TUG plus a cognitive task, TUG plus a manual task, and TUG plus a cognitive and a manual task. Statistically significant differences in mean time of execution were found in all four experimental conditions when comparing MCI and controls (p .8, p .7, p < .001 for MCI vs. AD). The authors conclude that functional motor deficits occurring in MCI can be assessed by the TUG test, in single or dual task modality.

  7. Game-based training of flexibility and attention improves task-switch performance: near and far transfer of cognitive training in an EEG study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Olfers, Kerwin J F; Band, Guido P H

    2018-01-01

    There is a demand for ways to enhance cognitive flexibility, as it can be a limiting factor for performance in daily life. Video game training has been linked to advantages in cognitive functioning, raising the question if training with video games can promote cognitive flexibility. In the current study, we investigated if game-based computerized cognitive training (GCCT) could enhance cognitive flexibility in a healthy young adult sample (N = 72), as measured by task-switch performance. Three GCCT schedules were contrasted, which targeted: (1) cognitive flexibility and task switching, (2) attention and working memory, or (3) an active control involving basic math games, in twenty 45-min sessions across 4-6 weeks. Performance on an alternating-runs task-switch paradigm during pretest and posttest sessions indicated greater overall reaction time improvements after both flexibility and attention training as compared to control, although not related to local switch cost. Flexibility training enhanced performance in the presence of distractor-related interference. In contrast, attention training was beneficial when low task difficulty undermined sustained selective attention. Furthermore, flexibility training improved response selection as indicated by a larger N2 amplitude after training as compared to control, and more efficient conflict monitoring as indicated by reduced Nc/CRN and larger Pe amplitude after training. These results provide tentative support for the efficacy of GCCT and suggest that an ideal training might include both task switching and attention components, with maximal task diversity both within and between training games.

  8. The nature of mind wandering during reading varies with the cognitive control demands of the reading strategy.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Moss, Jarrod; Schunn, Christian D; Schneider, Walter; McNamara, Danielle S

    2013-11-20

    Prior studies of mind wandering find the default network active during mind wandering, but these studies have yielded mixed results concerning the role of cognitive control brain regions during mind wandering. Mind wandering often interferes with reading comprehension, and prior neuroimaging studies of discourse comprehension and strategic reading comprehension have shown that there are at least two networks of brain regions that support strategic discourse comprehension: a domain-general control network and a network of regions supporting coherence-building comprehension processes. The present study was designed to further examine the neural correlates of mind wandering by examining mind wandering during strategic reading comprehension. Participants provided ratings of mind wandering frequency that were used to investigate interactions between the strategy being performed and brain regions whose activation was modulated by wind wandering. The results support prior findings showing that cognitive control regions are at times more active during mind wandering than during a task with low control demands, such as rereading. This result provides an initial examination of the neural correlates of mind wandering during discourse comprehension and shows that the processes being engaged by the primary task need to be considered when studying mind wandering. The results also replicate, in a different learning domain, prior findings of key brain areas associated with different reading strategies. © 2013 Published by Elsevier B.V.

  9. Task demands affect spatial reference frame weighting during tactile localization in sighted and congenitally blind adults.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jonathan T W Schubert

    Full Text Available Task demands modulate tactile localization in sighted humans, presumably through weight adjustments in the spatial integration of anatomical, skin-based, and external, posture-based information. In contrast, previous studies have suggested that congenitally blind humans, by default, refrain from automatic spatial integration and localize touch using only skin-based information. Here, sighted and congenitally blind participants localized tactile targets on the palm or back of one hand, while ignoring simultaneous tactile distractors at congruent or incongruent locations on the other hand. We probed the interplay of anatomical and external location codes for spatial congruency effects by varying hand posture: the palms either both faced down, or one faced down and one up. In the latter posture, externally congruent target and distractor locations were anatomically incongruent and vice versa. Target locations had to be reported either anatomically ("palm" or "back" of the hand, or externally ("up" or "down" in space. Under anatomical instructions, performance was more accurate for anatomically congruent than incongruent target-distractor pairs. In contrast, under external instructions, performance was more accurate for externally congruent than incongruent pairs. These modulations were evident in sighted and blind individuals. Notably, distractor effects were overall far smaller in blind than in sighted participants, despite comparable target-distractor identification performance. Thus, the absence of developmental vision seems to be associated with an increased ability to focus tactile attention towards a non-spatially defined target. Nevertheless, that blind individuals exhibited effects of hand posture and task instructions in their congruency effects suggests that, like the sighted, they automatically integrate anatomical and external information during tactile localization. Moreover, spatial integration in tactile processing is, thus, flexibly

  10. Task demands affect spatial reference frame weighting during tactile localization in sighted and congenitally blind adults.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schubert, Jonathan T W; Badde, Stephanie; Röder, Brigitte; Heed, Tobias

    2017-01-01

    Task demands modulate tactile localization in sighted humans, presumably through weight adjustments in the spatial integration of anatomical, skin-based, and external, posture-based information. In contrast, previous studies have suggested that congenitally blind humans, by default, refrain from automatic spatial integration and localize touch using only skin-based information. Here, sighted and congenitally blind participants localized tactile targets on the palm or back of one hand, while ignoring simultaneous tactile distractors at congruent or incongruent locations on the other hand. We probed the interplay of anatomical and external location codes for spatial congruency effects by varying hand posture: the palms either both faced down, or one faced down and one up. In the latter posture, externally congruent target and distractor locations were anatomically incongruent and vice versa. Target locations had to be reported either anatomically ("palm" or "back" of the hand), or externally ("up" or "down" in space). Under anatomical instructions, performance was more accurate for anatomically congruent than incongruent target-distractor pairs. In contrast, under external instructions, performance was more accurate for externally congruent than incongruent pairs. These modulations were evident in sighted and blind individuals. Notably, distractor effects were overall far smaller in blind than in sighted participants, despite comparable target-distractor identification performance. Thus, the absence of developmental vision seems to be associated with an increased ability to focus tactile attention towards a non-spatially defined target. Nevertheless, that blind individuals exhibited effects of hand posture and task instructions in their congruency effects suggests that, like the sighted, they automatically integrate anatomical and external information during tactile localization. Moreover, spatial integration in tactile processing is, thus, flexibly adapted by top

  11. Effects of a cognitive dual task on variability and local dynamic stability in sustained repetitive arm movements using principal component analysis: a pilot study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Longo, Alessia; Federolf, Peter; Haid, Thomas; Meulenbroek, Ruud

    2018-06-01

    In many daily jobs, repetitive arm movements are performed for extended periods of time under continuous cognitive demands. Even highly monotonous tasks exhibit an inherent motor variability and subtle fluctuations in movement stability. Variability and stability are different aspects of system dynamics, whose magnitude may be further affected by a cognitive load. Thus, the aim of the study was to explore and compare the effects of a cognitive dual task on the variability and local dynamic stability in a repetitive bimanual task. Thirteen healthy volunteers performed the repetitive motor task with and without a concurrent cognitive task of counting aloud backwards in multiples of three. Upper-body 3D kinematics were collected and postural reconfigurations-the variability related to the volunteer's postural change-were determined through a principal component analysis-based procedure. Subsequently, the most salient component was selected for the analysis of (1) cycle-to-cycle spatial and temporal variability, and (2) local dynamic stability as reflected by the largest Lyapunov exponent. Finally, end-point variability was evaluated as a control measure. The dual cognitive task proved to increase the temporal variability and reduce the local dynamic stability, marginally decrease endpoint variability, and substantially lower the incidence of postural reconfigurations. Particularly, the latter effect is considered to be relevant for the prevention of work-related musculoskeletal disorders since reduced variability in sustained repetitive tasks might increase the risk of overuse injuries.

  12. Test-retest reliability and task order effects of emotional cognitive tests in healthy subjects.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Adams, Thomas; Pounder, Zoe; Preston, Sally; Hanson, Andy; Gallagher, Peter; Harmer, Catherine J; McAllister-Williams, R Hamish

    2016-11-01

    Little is known of the retest reliability of emotional cognitive tasks or the impact of using different tasks employing similar emotional stimuli within a battery. We investigated this in healthy subjects. We found improved overall performance in an emotional attentional blink task (EABT) with repeat testing at one hour and one week compared to baseline, but the impact of an emotional stimulus on performance was unchanged. Similarly, performance on a facial expression recognition task (FERT) was better one week after a baseline test, though the relative effect of specific emotions was unaltered. There was no effect of repeat testing on an emotional word categorising, recall and recognition task. We found no difference in performance in the FERT and EABT irrespective of task order. We concluded that it is possible to use emotional cognitive tasks in longitudinal studies and combine tasks using emotional facial stimuli in a single battery.

  13. Motor-cognitive dual-task deficits in individuals with early-mid stage Huntington disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fritz, Nora E; Hamana, Katy; Kelson, Mark; Rosser, Anne; Busse, Monica; Quinn, Lori

    2016-09-01

    Huntington disease (HD) results in a range of cognitive and motor impairments that progress throughout the disease stages; however, little research has evaluated specific dual-task abilities in this population, and the degree to which they may be related to functional ability. The purpose of this study was to a) examine simple and complex motor-cognitive dual-task performance in individuals with HD, b) determine relationships between dual-task walking ability and disease-specific measures of motor, cognitive and functional ability, and c) examine the relationship of dual-task measures to falls in individuals with HD. Thirty-two individuals with HD were evaluated for simple and complex dual-task ability using the Walking While Talking Test. Demographics and disease-specific measures of motor, cognitive and functional ability were also obtained. Individuals with HD had impairments in simple and complex dual-task ability. Simple dual-task walking was correlated to disease-specific motor scores as well as cognitive performance, but complex dual-task walking was correlated with total functional capacity, as well as a range of cognitive measures. Number of prospective falls was moderately-strongly correlated to dual-task measures. Our results suggest that individuals with HD have impairments in cognitive-motor dual-task ability that are related to disease progression and specifically functional ability. Dual-task measures appear to evaluate a unique construct in individuals with early to mid-stage HD, and may have value in improving the prediction of falls risk in this population. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  14. Task-relevant cognitive and motor functions are prioritized during prolonged speed-accuracy motor task performance.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Solianik, Rima; Satas, Andrius; Mickeviciene, Dalia; Cekanauskaite, Agne; Valanciene, Dovile; Majauskiene, Daiva; Skurvydas, Albertas

    2018-06-01

    This study aimed to explore the effect of prolonged speed-accuracy motor task on the indicators of psychological, cognitive, psychomotor and motor function. Ten young men aged 21.1 ± 1.0 years performed a fast- and accurate-reaching movement task and a control task. Both tasks were performed for 2 h. Despite decreased motivation, and increased perception of effort as well as subjective feeling of fatigue, speed-accuracy motor task performance improved during the whole period of task execution. After the motor task, the increased working memory function and prefrontal cortex oxygenation at rest and during conflict detection, and the decreased efficiency of incorrect response inhibition and visuomotor tracking were observed. The speed-accuracy motor task increased the amplitude of motor-evoked potentials, while grip strength was not affected. These findings demonstrate that to sustain the performance of 2-h speed-accuracy task under conditions of self-reported fatigue, task-relevant functions are maintained or even improved, whereas less critical functions are impaired.

  15. Impact of background noise and sentence complexity on cognitive processing demands

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Wendt, Dorothea; Dau, Torsten; Hjortkjær, Jens

    2015-01-01

    Speech comprehension in adverse listening conditions requires cognitive processingdemands. Processing demands can increase with acoustically degraded speech but also depend on linguistic aspects of the speech signal, such as syntactic complexity. In the present study, pupil dilations were recorded...... in 19 normal-hearing participants while processing sentences that were either syntactically simple or complex and presented in either high- or low-level background noise. Furthermore, the participants were asked to rate the subjectively perceived difficulty of sentence comprehension. The results showed...

  16. Associations between physical function, dual-task performance and cognition in patients with mild Alzheimer's disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sobol, Nanna Aue; Hoffmann, Kristine; Vogel, Asmus; Lolk, Annette; Gottrup, Hanne; Høgh, Peter; Hasselbalch, Steen G; Beyer, Nina

    2016-11-01

    Alzheimer's disease (AD) causes a gradual decline in cognition, limitations of dual-tasking and physical function leading to total dependence. Hence, information about the interaction between physical function, dual-task performance and cognition may lead to new treatment strategies with the purpose of preserving function and quality of life. The objective of this study was to investigate the associations between physical function, dual-task performance and cognition in community-dwelling patients with mild AD. Baseline results from 185 participants (50-90 years old) in the single blinded multicenter RCT 'ADEX' (Alzheimer's disease: the effect of physical exercise) were used. Assessments included tests of physical function: 400-m walk test, 10-m walk test, Timed Up and Go test and 30-s chair stand test; dual-task performance, i.e., 10-m walk while counting backwards from 50 or naming the months backwards; and cognition, i.e., Mini Mental State Examination, Symbol Digit Modalities Test, the Stroop Color and Word Test, and Lexical verbal fluency test. Results in the 30-s chair stand test correlated significantly with all tests of cognition (r = .208-.242) while the other physical function tests only randomly correlated with tests of cognition. Results in the dual-task counting backwards correlated significantly with results in all tests of cognition (r = .259-.388), which accounted for 7%-15% of the variation indicating that a faster time to complete dual-task performance was associated with better cognitive performance. The evidence of the associations between physical function, dual-task performance and cognition is important when creating new rehabilitation interventions to patients with mild AD.

  17. Does Task-Set Reconfiguration Create Cognitive Slack?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gilbert, Sam J.

    2005-01-01

    C. Oriet and P. Jolicoeur (see record 2003-08747-016) reported 2 experiments in which the perceptual contrast of stimuli was manipulated in a task-switching paradigm. They failed to observe an interaction in the reaction time data between task switching, perceptual contrast, and response-stimulus interval. Using the locus of slack logic, they…

  18. The Effects of Distraction on Cognitive Task Performance during Toddlerhood

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wyss, Nancy M.; Kannass, Kathleen N.; Haden, Catherine A.

    2013-01-01

    We investigated the effects of distraction on attention and task performance during toddlerhood. Thirty toddlers (24- to 26-month-olds) completed different tasks (2 of each: categorization, problem solving, memory, free play) in one of two conditions: No Distraction or Distraction. The results revealed that the distractor had varying effects on…

  19. Effects of Physical-Cognitive Dual Task Training on Executive Function and Gait Performance in Older Adults: A Randomized Controlled Trial.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Falbo, S; Condello, G; Capranica, L; Forte, R; Pesce, C

    2016-01-01

    Physical and cognitive training seem to counteract age-related decline in physical and mental function. Recently, the possibility of integrating cognitive demands into physical training has attracted attention. The purpose of this study was to evaluate the effects of twelve weeks of designed physical-cognitive training on executive cognitive function and gait performance in older adults. Thirty-six healthy, active individuals aged 72.30 ± 5.84 years were assigned to two types of physical training with major focus on physical single task (ST) training ( n = 16) and physical-cognitive dual task (DT) training ( n = 20), respectively. They were tested before and after the intervention for executive function (inhibition, working memory) through Random Number Generation and for gait (walking with/without negotiating hurdles) under both single and dual task (ST, DT) conditions. Gait performance improved in both groups, while inhibitory performance decreased after exercise training with ST focus but tended to increase after training with physical-cognitive DT focus. Changes in inhibition performance were correlated with changes in DT walking performance with group differences as a function of motor task complexity (with/without hurdling). The study supports the effectiveness of group exercise classes for older individuals to improve gait performance, with physical-cognitive DT training selectively counteracting the age-related decline in a core executive function essential for daily living.

  20. Monitoring cognitive and emotional processes through pupil and cardiac response during dynamic versus logical task.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Causse, Mickaël; Sénard, Jean-Michel; Démonet, Jean François; Pastor, Josette

    2010-06-01

    The paper deals with the links between physiological measurements and cognitive and emotional functioning. As long as the operator is a key agent in charge of complex systems, the definition of metrics able to predict his performance is a great challenge. The measurement of the physiological state is a very promising way but a very acute comprehension is required; in particular few studies compare autonomous nervous system reactivity according to specific cognitive processes during task performance and task related psychological stress is often ignored. We compared physiological parameters recorded on 24 healthy subjects facing two neuropsychological tasks: a dynamic task that require problem solving in a world that continually evolves over time and a logical task representative of cognitive processes performed by operators facing everyday problem solving. Results showed that the mean pupil diameter change was higher during the dynamic task; conversely, the heart rate was more elevated during the logical task. Finally, the systolic blood pressure seemed to be strongly sensitive to psychological stress. A better taking into account of the precise influence of a given cognitive activity and both workload and related task-induced psychological stress during task performance is a promising way to better monitor operators in complex working situations to detect mental overload or pejorative stress factor of error.

  1. Self-assessment of social cognitive ability in individuals with schizophrenia: Appraising task difficulty and allocation of effort.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cornacchio, Danielle; Pinkham, Amy E; Penn, David L; Harvey, Philip D

    2017-01-01

    Patients with severe mental illnesses manifest substantial deficits in self-assessment of the abilities that impact everyday functioning. This study compares patients with schizophrenia to healthy individuals on their social cognitive performance, their assessment of that performance, and the convergence between performance and indicators of effort in solving tasks. Patients with schizophrenia (n=57) and healthy controls (HC; n=47) completed the Bell-Lysaker Emotion Recognition Test (BLERT), a psychometrically sound assessment of emotion recognition. Participants rated their confidence in the accuracy of their responses after each item. Participants were instructed to respond as rapidly as possible without sacrificing accuracy; the time to complete each item was recorded. Patients with schizophrenia performed less accurately on the BLERT than HC. Both patients and HC were more confident on items that they correctly answered than for items with errors, with patients being less confident overall; there was no significant interaction for confidence between group and accuracy. HC demonstrated a more substantial adjustment of response time to task difficulty by taking considerably longer to solve items that they got wrong, whereas patients showed only a minimal adjustment. These results expand knowledge about both self-assessment of social cognitive performance and the ability to appraise difficulty and adjust effort to social cognitive task demands in patients with schizophrenia. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  2. FAST COGNITIVE AND TASK ORIENTED, ITERATIVE DATA DISPLAY (FACTOID)

    Science.gov (United States)

    2017-06-01

    rational thinking styles.," Journal of Personality and Social Psychology , vol. 71, pp. 390-405., 1996. [3] S. Frederick, " Cognitive reflection and...2011. [7] D. Webster and A. Kruglanski, "Individual differences in need for cognitive closure," Journal of Personality and Social Psychology , vol. 67...34The development of the Game Engagement Questionnaire: A measure of engagement in video game-playing," Journal of Experimental Social Psychology

  3. Resolving conflicts in task demands during balance recovery: does holding an object inhibit compensatory grasping?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bateni, Hamid; Zecevic, Aleksandra; McIlroy, William E; Maki, Brian E

    2004-07-01

    The ability to reach and "grasp" (grip or touch) structures for support in reaction to instability is an important element of the postural repertoire. It is unclear, however, how the central nervous system (CNS) resolves the potential conflict between holding an object and the need to release the held object and grasp alternative support, particularly if the held object is perceived to be relevant to the task of stabilizing the body, e.g. an assistive device. This study examined whether compensatory grasping is inhibited when holding an object, and whether the influence differs when holding an assistive device (cane) versus a task-irrelevant object (top handle portion of a cane). We also investigated the influence of preloading the assistive device, to determine whether conflicting demands for arm-muscle activation (requiring disengagement of ongoing agonist or antagonist activity) would influence the inhibition of compensatory grasping. Unpredictable forward and backward platform translations were used to evoke the balancing reactions in 16 healthy young adults. A handrail was mounted to the right and foot motion was constrained by barriers, with the intent that successful balance recovery would (in large-perturbation trials) require subjects to release the held object and contact the rail with the right hand. Results showed that grasping reactions were commonly used to recover equilibrium when the hand was free (rail contact in 71% of large-perturbation trials). However, holding either the cane or canetop had a potent modulating effect: although early biceps activation was almost never inhibited completely (significant activity within 200 ms in 98% of trials), the average activation amplitude was attenuated by 30-64% and the average frequency of handrail contact was reduced by a factor of two or more. This reduced use of the rail occurred even though the consequence often involved falling against a safety harness or barriers. Handrail contact occurred least

  4. Cognitive tasks promote automatization of postural control in young and older adults.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Potvin-Desrochers, Alexandra; Richer, Natalie; Lajoie, Yves

    2017-09-01

    Researchers looking at the effects of performing a concurrent cognitive task on postural control in young and older adults using traditional center-of-pressure measures and complexity measures found discordant results. Results of experiments showing improvements of stability have suggested the use of strategies such as automatization of postural control or stiffening strategy. This experiment aimed to confirm in healthy young and older adults that performing a cognitive task while standing leads to improvements that are due to automaticity of sway by using sample entropy. Twenty-one young adults and twenty-five older adults were asked to stand on a force platform while performing a cognitive task. There were four cognitive tasks: simple reaction time, go/no-go reaction time, equation and occurrence of a digit in a number sequence. Results demonstrated decreased sway area and variability as well as increased sample entropy for both groups when performing a cognitive task. Results suggest that performing a concurrent cognitive task promotes the adoption of an automatic postural control in young and older adults as evidenced by an increased postural stability and postural sway complexity. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  5. Neural basis of superior performance of action videogame players in an attention-demanding task.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mishra, Jyoti; Zinni, Marla; Bavelier, Daphne; Hillyard, Steven A

    2011-01-19

    Steady-state visual evoked potentials (SSVEPs) were recorded from action videogame players (VGPs) and from non-videogame players (NVGPs) during an attention-demanding task. Participants were presented with a multi-stimulus display consisting of rapid sequences of alphanumeric stimuli presented at rates of 8.6/12 Hz in the left/right peripheral visual fields, along with a central square at fixation flashing at 5.5 Hz and a letter sequence flashing at 15 Hz at an upper central location. Subjects were cued to attend to one of the peripheral or central stimulus sequences and detect occasional targets. Consistent with previous behavioral studies, VGPs detected targets with greater speed and accuracy than NVGPs. This behavioral advantage was associated with an increased suppression of SSVEP amplitudes to unattended peripheral sequences in VGPs relative to NVGPs, whereas the magnitude of the attended SSVEPs was equivalent in the two groups. Group differences were also observed in the event-related potentials to targets in the alphanumeric sequences, with the target-elicited P300 component being of larger amplitude in VGPS than NVGPs. These electrophysiological findings suggest that the superior target detection capabilities of the VGPs are attributable, at least in part, to enhanced suppression of distracting irrelevant information and more effective perceptual decision processes.

  6. Cognitive Task Analysis for Instruction in Single-Injection Ultrasound Guided-Regional Anesthesia

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gucev, Gligor V.

    2012-01-01

    Cognitive task analysis (CTA) is methodology for eliciting knowledge from subject matter experts. CTA has been used to capture the cognitive processes, decision-making, and judgments that underlie expert behaviors. A review of the literature revealed that CTA has not yet been used to capture the knowledge required to perform ultrasound guided…

  7. The Role of Learning Tasks on Attitude Change Using Cognitive Flexibility Hypertext Systems

    Science.gov (United States)

    Godshalk, Veronica M.; Harvey, Douglas M.; Moller, Leslie

    2004-01-01

    In this study, the authors examined the impact of task assignment on the effectiveness of a Web-based experiential exercise based on cognitive flexibility theory to enlighten learner attitudes toward the ill-structured topic of sexual harassment. In the research study, we sought to shed light on the use of a cognitive flexibility approach when…

  8. Children's mathematical performance: five cognitive tasks across five grades.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Moore, Alex M; Ashcraft, Mark H

    2015-07-01

    Children in elementary school, along with college adults, were tested on a battery of basic mathematical tasks, including digit naming, number comparison, dot enumeration, and simple addition or subtraction. Beyond cataloguing performance to these standard tasks in Grades 1 to 5, we also examined relationships among the tasks, including previously reported results on a number line estimation task. Accuracy and latency improved across grades for all tasks, and classic interaction patterns were found, for example, a speed-up of subitizing and counting, increasingly shallow slopes in number comparison, and progressive speeding of responses especially to larger addition and subtraction problems. Surprisingly, digit naming was faster than subitizing at all ages, arguing against a pre-attentive processing explanation for subitizing. Estimation accuracy and speed were strong predictors of children's addition and subtraction performance. Children who gave exponential responses on the number line estimation task were slower at counting in the dot enumeration task and had longer latencies on addition and subtraction problems. The results provided further support for the importance of estimation as an indicator of children's current and future mathematical expertise. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  9. Gait and Cognition in Parkinson’s Disease: Cognitive Impairment Is Inadequately Reflected by Gait Performance during Dual Task

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Heiko Gaßner

    2017-10-01

    Full Text Available IntroductionCognitive and gait deficits are common symptoms in Parkinson’s disease (PD. Motor-cognitive dual tasks (DTs are used to explore the interplay between gait and cognition. However, it is unclear if DT gait performance is indicative for cognitive impairment. Therefore, the aim of this study was to investigate if cognitive deficits are reflected by DT costs of spatiotemporal gait parameters.MethodsCognitive function, single task (ST and DT gait performance were investigated in 67 PD patients. Cognition was assessed by the Montreal Cognitive Assessment (MoCA followed by a standardized, sensor-based gait test and the identical gait test while subtracting serial 3’s. Cognitive impairment was defined by a MoCA score <26. DT costs in gait parameters [(DT − ST/ST × 100] were calculated as a measure of DT effect on gait. Correlation analysis was used to evaluate the association between MoCA performance and gait parameters. In a linear regression model, DT gait costs and clinical confounders (age, gender, disease duration, motor impairment, medication, and depression were correlated to cognitive performance. In a subgroup analysis, we compared matched groups of cognitively impaired and unimpaired PD patients regarding differences in ST, DT, and DT gait costs.ResultsCorrelation analysis revealed weak correlations between MoCA score and DT costs of gait parameters (r/rSp ≤ 0.3. DT costs of stride length, swing time variability, and maximum toe clearance (|r/rSp| > 0.2 were included in a regression analysis. The parameters only explain 8% of the cognitive variance. In combination with clinical confounders, regression analysis showed that these gait parameters explained 30% of MoCA performance. Group comparison revealed strong DT effects within both groups (large effect sizes, but significant between-group effects in DT gait costs were not observed.ConclusionThese findings suggest that DT gait performance is not indicative

  10. Social priming improves cognitive control in elderly adults--evidence from the Simon task.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Daniela Aisenberg

    Full Text Available We examined whether social priming of cognitive states affects the inhibitory process in elderly adults, as aging is related to deficits in inhibitory control. Forty-eight elderly adults and 45 young adults were assigned to three groups and performed a cognitive control task (Simon task, which was followed by 3 different manipulations of social priming (i.e., thinking about an 82 year-old person: 1 negative--characterized by poor cognitive abilities, 2 neutral--characterized by acts irrelevant to cognitive abilities, and 3 positive--excellent cognitive abilities. After the manipulation, the Simon task was performed again. Results showed improvement in cognitive control effects in seniors after the positive manipulation, indicated by a significant decrease in the magnitude of the Simon and interference effects, but not after the neutral and negative manipulations. Furthermore, a healthy pattern of sequential effect (Gratton that was absent before the manipulation in all 3 groups appeared after the positive manipulation. Namely, the Simon effect was only present after congruent but not after incongruent trials for the positive manipulation group. No influence of manipulations was found in young adults. These meaningful results were replicated in a second experiment and suggest a decrease in conflict interference resulting from positive cognitive state priming. Our study provides evidence that an implicit social concept of a positive cognitive condition in old age can affect the control process of the elderly and improve cognitive abilities.

  11. Social priming improves cognitive control in elderly adults--evidence from the Simon task.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Aisenberg, Daniela; Cohen, Noga; Pick, Hadas; Tressman, Iris; Rappaport, Michal; Shenberg, Tal; Henik, Avishai

    2015-01-01

    We examined whether social priming of cognitive states affects the inhibitory process in elderly adults, as aging is related to deficits in inhibitory control. Forty-eight elderly adults and 45 young adults were assigned to three groups and performed a cognitive control task (Simon task), which was followed by 3 different manipulations of social priming (i.e., thinking about an 82 year-old person): 1) negative--characterized by poor cognitive abilities, 2) neutral--characterized by acts irrelevant to cognitive abilities, and 3) positive--excellent cognitive abilities. After the manipulation, the Simon task was performed again. Results showed improvement in cognitive control effects in seniors after the positive manipulation, indicated by a significant decrease in the magnitude of the Simon and interference effects, but not after the neutral and negative manipulations. Furthermore, a healthy pattern of sequential effect (Gratton) that was absent before the manipulation in all 3 groups appeared after the positive manipulation. Namely, the Simon effect was only present after congruent but not after incongruent trials for the positive manipulation group. No influence of manipulations was found in young adults. These meaningful results were replicated in a second experiment and suggest a decrease in conflict interference resulting from positive cognitive state priming. Our study provides evidence that an implicit social concept of a positive cognitive condition in old age can affect the control process of the elderly and improve cognitive abilities.

  12. Brain wave concomitants of cross-cultural differences in scores on simple cognitive tasks

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Sonke, C.J.; Boxtel, van G.J.M.; Griesel, R.D.; Poortinga, Y.H.

    2008-01-01

    Interpretations of cross-cultural differences in performance on cognitive tasks tend to rely on broad concepts, such as general intelligence or cultural modes of thinking. In this study, the authors examine two proximate parameters, stimulus complexity and task exposure, using reaction time (RT) and

  13. Interaction between Task Oriented and Affective Information Processing in Cognitive Robotics

    Science.gov (United States)

    Haazebroek, Pascal; van Dantzig, Saskia; Hommel, Bernhard

    There is an increasing interest in endowing robots with emotions. Robot control however is still often very task oriented. We present a cognitive architecture that allows the combination of and interaction between task representations and affective information processing. Our model is validated by comparing simulation results with empirical data from experimental psychology.

  14. Cognitive task load in a naval ship control centre : from identification to prediction

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Grootjen, M.; Neerincx, M.A.; Grootjen, M.; Veltman, J.

    2006-01-01

    Deployment of information and communication technology will lead to further automation of control centre tasks and an increasing amount of information to be processed. A method for establishing adequate levels of cognitive task load for the operators in such complex environments has been developed.

  15. Memory Indexing: A Novel Method for Tracing Memory Processes in Complex Cognitive Tasks

    Science.gov (United States)

    Renkewitz, Frank; Jahn, Georg

    2012-01-01

    We validate an eye-tracking method applicable for studying memory processes in complex cognitive tasks. The method is tested with a task on probabilistic inferences from memory. It provides valuable data on the time course of processing, thus clarifying previous results on heuristic probabilistic inference. Participants learned cue values of…

  16. Validation of auditory detection response task method for assessing the attentional effects of cognitive load.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stojmenova, Kristina; Sodnik, Jaka

    2018-07-04

    There are 3 standardized versions of the Detection Response Task (DRT), 2 using visual stimuli (remote DRT and head-mounted DRT) and one using tactile stimuli. In this article, we present a study that proposes and validates a type of auditory signal to be used as DRT stimulus and evaluate the proposed auditory version of this method by comparing it with the standardized visual and tactile version. This was a within-subject design study performed in a driving simulator with 24 participants. Each participant performed 8 2-min-long driving sessions in which they had to perform 3 different tasks: driving, answering to DRT stimuli, and performing a cognitive task (n-back task). Presence of additional cognitive load and type of DRT stimuli were defined as independent variables. DRT response times and hit rates, n-back task performance, and pupil size were observed as dependent variables. Significant changes in pupil size for trials with a cognitive task compared to trials without showed that cognitive load was induced properly. Each DRT version showed a significant increase in response times and a decrease in hit rates for trials with a secondary cognitive task compared to trials without. Similar and significantly better results in differences in response times and hit rates were obtained for the auditory and tactile version compared to the visual version. There were no significant differences in performance rate between the trials without DRT stimuli compared to trials with and among the trials with different DRT stimuli modalities. The results from this study show that the auditory DRT version, using the signal implementation suggested in this article, is sensitive to the effects of cognitive load on driver's attention and is significantly better than the remote visual and tactile version for auditory-vocal cognitive (n-back) secondary tasks.

  17. Effects of cognitive appraisal and mental workload factors on performance in an arithmetic task.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Galy, Edith; Mélan, Claudine

    2015-12-01

    We showed in a previous study an additive interaction between intrinsic and extraneous cognitive loads and of participants' alertness in an 1-back working memory task. The interaction between intrinsic and extraneous cognitive loads was only observed when participants' alertness was low (i.e. in the morning). As alertness is known to reflect an individual's general functional state, we suggested that the working memory capacity available for germane cognitive load depends on a participant's functional state, in addition to intrinsic and extraneous loads induced by the task and task conditions. The relationships between the different load types and their assessment by specific load measures gave rise to a modified cognitive load model. The aim of the present study was to complete the model by determining to what extent and at what processing level an individual's characteristics intervene in order to implement efficient strategies in a working memory task. Therefore, the study explored participants' cognitive appraisal of the situation in addition to the load factors considered previously-task difficulty, time pressure and alertness. Each participant performed a mental arithmetic task in four different cognitive load conditions (crossover of two task difficulty conditions and of two time pressure conditions), both while their alertness was low (9 a.m.) and high (4 p.m.). Results confirmed an additive effect of task difficulty and time pressure, previously reported in the 1-back memory task, thereby lending further support to the modified cognitive load model. Further, in the high intrinsic and extraneous load condition, performance was reduced on the morning session (i.e. when alertness was low) on one hand, and in those participants' having a threat appraisal of the situation on the other hand. When these factors were included into the analysis, a performance drop occurred in the morning irrespective of cognitive appraisal, and with threat appraisal in the

  18. The Multidimensional Card Selection Task: A new way to measure concurrent cognitive flexibility in preschoolers.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Podjarny, Gal; Kamawar, Deepthi; Andrews, Katherine

    2017-07-01

    Most executive function research examining preschoolers' cognitive flexibility, the ability to think about something in more than one way, has focused on preschoolers' facility for sequentially switching their attention from one dimension to another (e.g., sorting bivalent cards first by color and then by shape). We know very little about preschoolers' ability to coordinate more than one dimension simultaneously (concurrent cognitive flexibility). Here we report on a new task, the Multidimensional Card Selection Task, which was designed to measure children's ability to consider two dimensions, and then three dimensions, concurrently (e.g., shape and size, and then shape, size, and color). More than half of the preschoolers in our sample of 107 (50 3-year-olds and 57 4-year-olds) could coordinate three dimensions simultaneously and consistently across three test trials. Furthermore, performance on the Multidimensional Card Selection Task was related, but not identical, to performance on other cognitive tasks, including a widely used measure of switching cognitive flexibility (the Dimensional Change Card Sort). The Multidimensional Card Selection Task provides a new way to measure concurrent cognitive flexibility in preschoolers, and opens another avenue for exploring the emergence of early cognitive flexibility development. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  19. Cardiac adaptivity to attention-demanding tasks in children with a pervasive developmental disorder not otherwise specified (PDD-NOS)

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Althaus, M; Aarnoudse, CC; Minderaa, RB; Mulder, Gysbertus; Mulder, Lambertus

    1999-01-01

    Background: Decreases in heart rate variability (HRV) have been repeatedly demonstrated to be an index of effort allocation to attention-demanding tasks. Children with autistic-type problems in social interaction and in adapting to unfamiliar situations (DSM-IV: PDD-NOS) have been shown to have

  20. Matching presentational tools' ontology to part-task demands to foster problem-solving in business economics

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Slof, Bert; Erkens, Gijsbert; Kirschner, Paul A.

    2011-01-01

    Slof, B., Erkens, G., & Kirschner, P. A. (2010, July). Matching representational tools’ ontology to part-task demands to foster problem-solving in business economics. In K. Gomez, L. Lyons, & J. Radinsky (Eds.), Learning in the Disciplines: Proceedings of the 9th International Conference of the

  1. Cognitive flexibility in young children: General or task-specific capacity?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Deák, Gedeon O; Wiseheart, Melody

    2015-10-01

    Cognitive flexibility is the ability to adapt to changing tasks or problems. To test whether cognitive flexibility is a coherent cognitive capacity in young children, we tested 3- to 5-year-olds' performance on two forms of task switching, rule-based (Three Dimension Changes Card Sorting, 3DCCS) and inductive (Flexible Induction of Meaning-Animates and Objects, FIM-Ob and FIM-An), as well as tests of response speed, verbal working memory, inhibition, and reasoning. Results suggest that cognitive flexibility is not a globally coherent trait; only the two inductive word-meaning (FIM) tests showed high inter-test coherence. Task- and knowledge-specific factors also determine children's flexibility in a given test. Response speed, vocabulary size, and causal reasoning skills further predicted individual and age differences in flexibility, although they did not have the same predictive relation with all three flexibility tests. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  2. Cognitive architectures: choreographing the dance of mental operations with the task environment.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gray, Wayne D

    2008-06-01

    In this article, I present the ideas and trends that have given rise to the use of cognitive architectures in human factors and provide a cognitive engineering-oriented taxonomy of these architectures and a snapshot of their use for cognitive engineering. Architectures of cognition have had a long history in human factors but a brief past. The long history entails a 50-year preamble, whereas the explosion of work in the current decade reflects the brief past. Understanding this history is key to understanding the current and future prospects for applying cognitive science theory to human factors practice. The review defines three formative eras in cognitive engineering research: the 1950s, 1980s, and now. In the first era, the fledging fields of cognitive science and human factors emphasized characteristics of the dancer the limited capacity or bounded rationality view of the mind, and the ballroom, the task environment. The second era emphasized the dance (i.e., the dynamic interaction between mental operations and task environment). The third era has seen the rise of cognitive architectures as tools for choreographing the dance of mental operations within the complex environments posed by human factors practice. Hybrid architectures present the best vector for introducing cognitive science theories into a renewed engineering-based human factors. The taxonomy provided in this article may provide guidance on when and whether to apply a cognitive science or a hybrid architecture to a human factors issue.

  3. IANA task force on nutrition and cognitive decline with aging

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Gillette-Guyonnet, S.; Abellan van Kan, G.; Andrieu, S.; Barberger-Gateau, P.; Berr, C.; Bonnefoy, M.; Dartigues, J.F.; Groot, de C.P.G.M.; Ferry, M.; Galan, P.; Hercberg, S.; Jeandel, C.; Morris, M.C.; Nourhashemi, F.; Payette, H.; Poulain, J.P.; Portet, F.; Roussel, A.M.; Ritz, P.; Rolland, Y.; Vellas, B.

    2007-01-01

    Cognitive impairment can be influenced by a number of factors. The potential effect of nutrition has become a topic of increasing scientific and public interest. In particular, there are arguments that nutrients (food and/or supplements) such as vitamins, trace minerals, lipids, can affect the risk

  4. Novel behavioral tasks for studying spatial cognition in rats

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Klement, Daniel; Blahna, Karel; Nekovářová, Tereza

    2008-01-01

    Roč. 57, Suppl.3 (2008), S161-S165 ISSN 0862-8408 R&D Projects: GA MŠk(CZ) LC554 Institutional research plan: CEZ:AV0Z50110509 Keywords : spatial cognition * moving objects * recognition Subject RIV: FH - Neurology Impact factor: 1.653, year: 2008

  5. Fostering Self-Regulation in Training Complex Cognitive Tasks

    Science.gov (United States)

    van Meeuwen, Ludo W.; Brand-Gruwel, Saskia; Kirschner, Paul A.; de Bock, Jeano J. P. R.; van Merriënboer, Jeroen J. G.

    2018-01-01

    In complex cognitive domains such as air traffic control, professionals must be able to adapt to and act upon continuing changes in a highly advanced technological work environment. To function optimally in such an environment, the controllers must be able to regulate their learning. Although these regulation skills should be part of their…

  6. Effects of dual task difficulty in motor and cognitive performance: Differences between adults and adolescents.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bustillo-Casero, Pilar; Villarrasa-Sapiña, Israel; García-Massó, Xavier

    2017-10-01

    In the present study our aim was to compare dual-task performance in thirteen adolescents and fifteen young adults while concurrently performing a cognitive and a motor task. The postural control variables were obtained under three different conditions: i) bipedal stance, ii) tandem stance and iii) unipedal stance. The cognitive task consisted of a backward digit span test in which the participants were asked to memorize a sequence of numbers and then repeat the number in reverse order at three different difficulty levels (i.e. with 3, 4 and 5 digits). The difficulty of the cognitive task was seen to have different effects on adolescents and young adults. Adolescents seem to prioritize postural control during high difficulty postural conditions while a cross-domain competition model appeared in easy postural conditions. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  7. Orbitofrontal cortex as a cognitive map of task space.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wilson, Robert C; Takahashi, Yuji K; Schoenbaum, G; Niv, Yael

    2014-01-22

    Orbitofrontal cortex (OFC) has long been known to play an important role in decision making. However, the exact nature of that role has remained elusive. Here, we propose a unifying theory of OFC function. We hypothesize that OFC provides an abstraction of currently available information in the form of a labeling of the current task state, which is used for reinforcement learning (RL) elsewhere in the brain. This function is especially critical when task states include unobservable information, for instance, from working memory. We use this framework to explain classic findings in reversal learning, delayed alternation, extinction, and devaluation as well as more recent findings showing the effect of OFC lesions on the firing of dopaminergic neurons in ventral tegmental area (VTA) in rodents performing an RL task. In addition, we generate a number of testable experimental predictions that can distinguish our theory from other accounts of OFC function. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  8. A FUNCTIONAL NEUROIMAGING INVESTIGATION OF THE ROLES OF STRUCTURAL COMPLEXITY AND TASK-DEMAND DURING AUDITORY SENTENCE PROCESSING

    Science.gov (United States)

    Love, Tracy; Haist, Frank; Nicol, Janet; Swinney, David

    2009-01-01

    Using functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI), this study directly examined an issue that bridges the potential language processing and multi-modal views of the role of Broca’s area: the effects of task-demands in language comprehension studies. We presented syntactically simple and complex sentences for auditory comprehension under three different (differentially complex) task-demand conditions: passive listening, probe verification, and theme judgment. Contrary to many language imaging findings, we found that both simple and complex syntactic structures activated left inferior frontal cortex (L-IFC). Critically, we found activation in these frontal regions increased together with increased task-demands. Specifically, tasks that required greater manipulation and comparison of linguistic material recruited L-IFC more strongly; independent of syntactic structure complexity. We argue that much of the presumed syntactic effects previously found in sentence imaging studies of L-IFC may, among other things, reflect the tasks employed in these studies and that L-IFC is a region underlying mnemonic and other integrative functions, on which much language processing may rely. PMID:16881268

  9. Intraindividual variability across cognitive tasks as a potential marker for prodromal Alzheimer’s disease

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Andrea Maria Kälin

    2014-07-01

    Full Text Available Recent studies have shown that increased cognitive intraindividual variability (IIV across accuracy scores from tests representing different cognitive domains (across-domain IIV might indicate prodromal Alzheimer’s disease (AD. Although IIV has been proposed to index cognitive control processes, IIV across accuracy scores from cognitive control tasks (within-domain IIV has not been examined in healthy controls subjects (HCS, mild cognitive impairment (MCI and AD patients in a single comparative study. This study examines the discriminative properties of within-domain IIV, and across-domain IIV in 149 HCS, 31 MCI and 26 AD. Three tasks representing different cognitive domains were identified to calculate across-domain IIV. Three other tasks representing cognitive control were identified to calculate within-domain IIV. The intraindividual standard deviation (ISD was calculated across accuracy scores. To compare IIV between groups, ANCOVAs with the covariates age, gender, education, and mean performance were computed. IIV scores in general were higher in AD vs. HCS (p< 0.01. Only across-domain IIV was higher in AD vs. MCI (p=0.001, and only within-domain IIV was higher in MCI vs. HCS (p=0.05. Within-domain IIV may constitute a cognitive marker for the detection of prodromal AD at the MCI stage, whereas across-domain IIV may detect beginning AD at the MCI stage.

  10. Efficient Kill-Save Ratios Ease Up the Cognitive Demands on Counterintuitive Moral Utilitarianism.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Trémolière, Bastien; Bonnefon, Jean-François

    2014-07-01

    The dual-process model of moral judgment postulates that utilitarian responses to moral dilemmas (e.g., accepting to kill one to save five) are demanding of cognitive resources. Here we show that utilitarian responses can become effortless, even when they involve to kill someone, as long as the kill-save ratio is efficient (e.g., 1 is killed to save 500). In Experiment 1, participants responded to moral dilemmas featuring different kill-save ratios under high or low cognitive load. In Experiments 2 and 3, participants responded at their own pace or under time pressure. Efficient kill-save ratios promoted utilitarian responding and neutered the effect of load or time pressure. We discuss whether this effect is more easily explained by a parallel-activation model or by a default-interventionist model. © 2014 by the Society for Personality and Social Psychology, Inc.

  11. Probing the Behavioral and Neurophysiological Effects of Acute Smoking Abstinence on Drug and Nondrug Reinforcement During a Cognitive Task.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schlienz, Nicolas J; Hawk, Larry W

    2017-06-01

    Smoking abstinence is theorized to increase smoking reinforcement and decrease nondrug reinforcement. A separate literature demonstrates the detrimental effects of abstinence on cognition. The present study integrates these two areas by examining the separate and combined effects of reinforcement and smoking abstinence on behavior and a neurophysiological index of response monitoring (ie, error-related negativity [ERN]) during a cognitive task. After a screening visit, adult smokers attended two laboratory visits, once while smoking and once while abstinent. Participants completed a flanker task under cigarette-, money-, and no-reinforcement conditions. The initial 15 participants had an easier reaction time (RT) requirement; to ensure sufficient error rates for ERN computation, a harder RT deadline was employed for the remaining 21 participants. Smoking abstinence reduced speeded accuracy and ERN amplitude only among participants tested with the harder RT deadline. Cigarette and money reinforcement each increased speeded accuracy and ERN amplitude compared to no reinforcement. The effect of cigarette reinforcement tended to be greater during abstinence for speeded accuracy but not the ERN. The effect of money reinforcement was unaffected by abstinence. The impact of smoking abstinence on reinforcement may depend on task demands. However, the effects of cigarette and money reinforcement generalize well from operant paradigms to cognitive tasks, fostering integration between the two literatures. Results provided modest evidence of abstinence-induced increases in smoking reinforcement; the absence of abstinence-induced reductions in nondrug reinforcement is consistent with recent work in suggesting that such effects are limited to a subset of sensory reinforcers. This study draws attention to the need for greater integration of reinforcement and cognition to better understand the mechanisms that contribute to smoking relapse. Results emphasize thoughtful

  12. A statistical approach for segregating cognitive task stages from multivariate fMRI BOLD time series

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Charmaine eDemanuele

    2015-10-01

    Full Text Available Multivariate pattern analysis can reveal new information from neuroimaging data to illuminate human cognition and its disturbances. Here, we develop a methodological approach, based on multivariate statistical/machine learning and time series analysis, to discern cognitive processing stages from fMRI blood oxygenation level dependent (BOLD time series. We apply this method to data recorded from a group of healthy adults whilst performing a virtual reality version of the delayed win-shift radial arm maze task. This task has been frequently used to study working memory and decision making in rodents. Using linear classifiers and multivariate test statistics in conjunction with time series bootstraps, we show that different cognitive stages of the task, as defined by the experimenter, namely, the encoding/retrieval, choice, reward and delay stages, can be statistically discriminated from the BOLD time series in brain areas relevant for decision making and working memory. Discrimination of these task stages was significantly reduced during poor behavioral performance in dorsolateral prefrontal cortex (DLPFC, but not in the primary visual cortex (V1. Experimenter-defined dissection of time series into class labels based on task structure was confirmed by an unsupervised, bottom-up approach based on Hidden Markov Models. Furthermore, we show that different groupings of recorded time points into cognitive event classes can be used to test hypotheses about the specific cognitive role of a given brain region during task execution. We found that whilst the DLPFC strongly differentiated between task stages associated with different memory loads, but not between different visual-spatial aspects, the reverse was true for V1. Our methodology illustrates how different aspects of cognitive information processing during one and the same task can be separated and attributed to specific brain regions based on information contained in multivariate patterns of voxel

  13. Dual-Task Performance: Influence of Frailty, Level of Physical Activity, and Cognition.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Giusti Rossi, Paulo; Pires de Andrade, Larissa; Hotta Ansai, Juliana; Silva Farche, Ana Claudia; Carnaz, Leticia; Dalpubel, Daniela; Ferriolli, Eduardo; Assis Carvalho Vale, Francisco; de Medeiros Takahashi, Anielle Cristhine

    2018-03-08

    Cognition and level of physical activity have been associated with frailty syndrome. The development of tools that assess deficits related to physical and cognitive frailties simultaneously are of common interest. However, little is known about how much these aspects influence the performance of dual-task tests. Our aims were (a) to verify the influence of frailty syndrome and objectively measured physical activity and cognition on the Timed Up and Go (TUG) test and Timed Up and Go associated with dual-task (TUG-DT) performances; and (b) to compare TUG and TUG-DT performances between older adults who develop frailty syndrome. Sixty-four community-dwelling older adults were divided into frail, prefrail, and nonfrail groups, according to frailty phenotype. Assessments included anamnesis, screening of frailty syndrome, cognitive assessment (Addenbrooke's cognitive examination), placement of a triaxial accelerometer to assess level of physical activity, and TUG and TUG-DT (TUG associated with a motor-cognitive task of calling a phone number) performances. After 7 days, the accelerometer was removed. A multiple linear regression was applied to identify which independent variables could explain performances in the TUG and TUG-DT. Subsequently, the analysis of covariance test, adjusted for age, cognition, and level of physical activity covariates, was used to compare test performances. There were no differences in cognition between groups. Significant differences in the level of physical activity were found in the frail group. Compared with the frail group, the nonfrail group required less time and fewer steps to complete the TUG. Regarding the TUG-DT, cognition and age influenced the time spent and number of steps, respectively; however, no differences were found between groups. Frail older adults presented worse performance in the TUG when compared with nonfrail older adults. The dual-task test does not differentiate older adults with frailty syndrome, regardless of

  14. Effects of the Addition of a Dual Task to a Supervised Physical Exercise Program on Older Adults' Cognitive Performance.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ansai, Juliana Hotta; de Andrade, Larissa Pires; de Souza Buto, Marcele Stephanie; de Vassimon Barroso, Verena; Farche, Ana Claudia Silva; Rossi, Paulo Giusti; de Medeiros Takahashi, Anielle Cristhine

    2017-04-01

    The purpose of this study was to investigate the effects of the addition of a dual task to multicomponent training on cognition of active older adults. Eighty physically active older adults were divided into an intervention group (IG) and a control group (CG). Both groups performed multicomponent training over 12 weeks. The IG simultaneously performed exercises and cognitive tasks. The Mini-Mental State Examination, the Montreal Cognitive Assessment, and the Clock Drawing Test were used for cognitive assessments. The Timed Up and Go Test associated with a cognitive task was used for dual-task assessment. Significant interactions were not observed between groups in terms of the cognitive variables or the dual-task performance. An interaction was observed only for Timed Up and Go Test performance, which was better in the CG than in the IG. Active older adults showed no improvement in cognition following the addition of the dual task to the multicomponent training.

  15. Cognitive performance on Piagetian tasks by Alzheimer's disease patients.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Thornbury, J M

    1992-02-01

    The purpose of this study was to examine cognitive abilities in Alzheimer's disease (AD) patients using Piaget's child developmental theory. Thirty elderly AD patients and 30 elderly control subjects were given two traditional Piagetian measures, the Infant Psychological Development Scale and the Concrete Operations Test. Half of the AD subjects (15) were in Piaget's sensorimotor or preoperational stages, while the remaining half of the AD subjects and all elderly control subjects were in Piaget's concrete operational stage, chi 2 [1, N = 60] = 17.42, p less than .001. If subsequent studies confirm that AD patients' cognitive characteristics are similar to Piaget's theoretical model, nursing care might be individualized based on mental competence, thus minimizing the commonly observed caregiver overestimation and underestimation of the AD patient's ability to understand and cooperate.

  16. Differential effects of white noise in cognitive and perceptual tasks

    OpenAIRE

    Herweg, Nora A.; Bunzeck, Nico

    2015-01-01

    Beneficial effects of noise on higher cognition have recently attracted attention. Hypothesizing an involvement of the mesolimbic dopamine system and its functional interactions with cortical areas, the current study aimed to demonstrate a facilitation of dopamine-dependent attentional and mnemonic functions by externally applying white noise in five behavioral experiments including a total sample of 167 healthy human subjects. During working memory, acoustic white noise impaired accuracy whe...

  17. Relationships among gender, cognitive style, academic major, and performance on the Piaget water-level task.

    Science.gov (United States)

    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.

  18. Emotional and cognitive influences in air traffic controller tasks: An investigation using a virtual environment?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Truschzinski, Martina; Betella, Alberto; Brunnett, Guido; Verschure, Paul F M J

    2018-05-01

    Air traffic controllers are required to perform complex tasks which require attention and high precision. This study investigates how the difficulty of such tasks influences emotional states, cognitive workload and task performance. We use quantitative and qualitative measurements, including the recording of pupil dilation and changes in affect using questionnaires. Participants were required to perform a number of air traffic control tasks using the immersive human accessible Virtual Reality space in the "eXperience Induction Machine". Based on the data collected, we developed and validated a model which integrates personality, workload and affective theories. Our results indicate that the difficulty of an air traffic control task has a direct influence on cognitive workload as well as on the self-reported mood; whereas both mood and workload seem to change independently. In addition, we show that personality, in particular neuroticism, affects both mood and performance of the participants. Copyright © 2018 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  19. Dual-Tasking in Multiple Sclerosis - Implications for a Cognitive Screening Instrument.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Beste, Christian; Mückschel, Moritz; Paucke, Madlen; Ziemssen, Tjalf

    2018-01-01

    The monitoring of cognitive functions is central to the assessment and consecutive management of multiple sclerosis (MS). Though, especially cognitive processes that are central to everyday behavior like dual-tasking are often neglected. We examined dual-task performance using a psychological-refractory period (PRP) task in N = 21 patients and healthy controls and conducted standard neuropsychological tests. In dual-tasking, MS patients committed more erroneous responses when dual-tasking was difficult. In easier conditions, performance of MS patients did not differ to controls. Interestingly, the response times were generally not affected by the difficulty of the dual task, showing that the deficits observed do not reflect simple motor deficits or deficits in information processing speed but point out deficits in executive control functions and response selection in particular. Effect sizes were considerably large with d ∼0.80 in mild affected patients and the achieved power was above 99%. There are cognitive control and dual tasking deficits in MS that are not attributable to simple motor speed deficits. Scaling of the difficulty of dual-tasking makes the test applied suitable for a wide variety of MS-patients and may complement neuropsychological assessments in clinical care and research setting.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    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.

  1. Rational adaptation under task and processing constraints: implications for testing theories of cognition and action.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Howes, Andrew; Lewis, Richard L; Vera, Alonso

    2009-10-01

    The authors assume that individuals adapt rationally to a utility function given constraints imposed by their cognitive architecture and the local task environment. This assumption underlies a new approach to modeling and understanding cognition-cognitively bounded rational analysis-that sharpens the predictive acuity of general, integrated theories of cognition and action. Such theories provide the necessary computational means to explain the flexible nature of human behavior but in doing so introduce extreme degrees of freedom in accounting for data. The new approach narrows the space of predicted behaviors through analysis of the payoff achieved by alternative strategies, rather than through fitting strategies and theoretical parameters to data. It extends and complements established approaches, including computational cognitive architectures, rational analysis, optimal motor control, bounded rationality, and signal detection theory. The authors illustrate the approach with a reanalysis of an existing account of psychological refractory period (PRP) dual-task performance and the development and analysis of a new theory of ordered dual-task responses. These analyses yield several novel results, including a new understanding of the role of strategic variation in existing accounts of PRP and the first predictive, quantitative account showing how the details of ordered dual-task phenomena emerge from the rational control of a cognitive system subject to the combined constraints of internal variance, motor interference, and a response selection bottleneck.

  2. Dual-tasking and gait in people with Mild Cognitive Impairment. The effect of working memory

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Phillips Natalie A

    2009-09-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Cognition and mobility in older adults are closely associated and they decline together with aging. Studies evaluating associations between cognitive factors and gait performance in people with Mild Cognitive Impairment (MCI are scarce. In this study, our aim was to determine whether specific cognitive factors have a more identifiable effect on gait velocity during dual-tasking in people with MCI. Methods Fifty-five participants, mean age 77.7 (SD = 5.9, 45% women, with MCI were evaluated for global cognition, working memory, executive function, and attention. Gait Velocity (GV was measured under a single-task condition (single GV and under two dual-task conditions: 1 while counting backwards (counting GV, 2 while naming animals (verbal GV. Multivariable linear regression analysis was used to examine associations with an alpha-level of 0.05. Results Participants experienced a reduction in GV while engaging in dual-task challenges (p Conclusion In older adults with MCI, low working memory performance was associated with slow GV. Dual-task conditions showed the strongest associations with gait slowing. Our findings suggest that cortical control of gait is associated with decline in working memory in people with MCI.

  3. Methylphenidate decreased the amount of glucose needed by the brain to perform a cognitive task.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Nora D Volkow

    2008-04-01

    Full Text Available The use of stimulants (methylphenidate and amphetamine as cognitive enhancers by the general public is increasing and is controversial. It is still unclear how they work or why they improve performance in some individuals but impair it in others. To test the hypothesis that stimulants enhance signal to noise ratio of neuronal activity and thereby reduce cerebral activity by increasing efficiency, we measured the effects of methylphenidate on brain glucose utilization in healthy adults. We measured brain glucose metabolism (using Positron Emission Tomography and 2-deoxy-2[18F]fluoro-D-glucose in 23 healthy adults who were tested at baseline and while performing an accuracy-controlled cognitive task (numerical calculations given with and without methylphenidate (20 mg, oral. Sixteen subjects underwent a fourth scan with methylphenidate but without cognitive stimulation. Compared to placebo methylphenidate significantly reduced the amount of glucose utilized by the brain when performing the cognitive task but methylphenidate did not affect brain metabolism when given without cognitive stimulation. Whole brain metabolism when the cognitive task was given with placebo increased 21% whereas with methylphenidate it increased 11% (50% less. This reflected both a decrease in magnitude of activation and in the regions activated by the task. Methylphenidate's reduction of the metabolic increases in regions from the default network (implicated in mind-wandering was associated with improvement in performance only in subjects who activated these regions when the cognitive task was given with placebo. These results corroborate prior findings that stimulant medications reduced the magnitude of regional activation to a task and in addition document a "focusing" of the activation. This effect may be beneficial when neuronal resources are diverted (i.e., mind-wandering or impaired (i.e., attention deficit hyperactivity disorder, but it could be detrimental when

  4. A Cognitive Analysis of Armor Procedural Task Training

    Science.gov (United States)

    1982-03-01

    Verbal Behavior, 8, 323-343. Craik , F. I. M., & Lockhart , R. S. (1972). Levels of processing : A framework for memory research. Journal of Verbal Learning...concep- tual or meaningful) coding of the task to be learned (e.g., Bjork, 1975; Craik & Lockhart , 1972; Melton & Martin, 1972). In order to remember a...were several serious problems with applying this approach in the context of entry- level military training. In particular, the soldier did not always

  5. Cognitive strategies in the mental rotation task revealed by EEG spectral power.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gardony, Aaron L; Eddy, Marianna D; Brunyé, Tad T; Taylor, Holly A

    2017-11-01

    The classic mental rotation task (MRT; Shepard & Metzler, 1971) is commonly thought to measure mental rotation, a cognitive process involving covert simulation of motor rotation. Yet much research suggests that the MRT recruits both motor simulation and other analytic cognitive strategies that depend on visuospatial representation and visual working memory (WM). In the present study, we investigated cognitive strategies in the MRT using time-frequency analysis of EEG and independent component analysis. We scrutinized sensorimotor mu (µ) power reduction, associated with motor simulation, parietal alpha (pα) power reduction, associated with visuospatial representation, and frontal midline theta (fmθ) power enhancement, associated with WM maintenance and manipulation. µ power increased concomitant with increasing task difficulty, suggesting reduced use of motor simulation, while pα decreased and fmθ power increased, suggesting heightened use of visuospatial representation processing and WM, respectively. These findings suggest that MRT performance involves flexibly trading off between cognitive strategies, namely a motor simulation-based mental rotation strategy and WM-intensive analytic strategies based on task difficulty. Flexible cognitive strategy use may be a domain-general cognitive principle that underlies aptitude and spatial intelligence in a variety of cognitive domains. We close with discussion of the present study's implications as well as future directions. Published by Elsevier Inc.

  6. Task demands and the pressures of everyday life: associations between cardiovascular reactivity and work blood pressure and heart rate.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Steptoe, A; Cropley, M; Joekes, K

    2000-01-01

    Associations between cardiovascular stress reactivity and blood pressure and heart rate recorded in everyday life were hypothesized to depend on the stressfulness of the ambulatory monitoring period relative to standardized tasks and on activity levels at the time of measurement. One hundred two female and 60 male school teachers carried out high- and low-demand tasks under standardized conditions and ambulatory monitoring during the working day. Stress ratings during the day were close to those recorded during the low-demand task. Reactions to the low-demand task were significant predictors of ambulatory blood pressure and heart rate independent of baseline, age, gender, and body mass. Associations were more consistent for ambulatory recordings taken when participants were seated than when they were standing and when the ambulatory monitoring day was considered to be as stressful as usual or more stressful than usual, and not less stressful than usual. Laboratory-field associations of cardiovascular activity depend in part on the congruence of stressfulness and physical activity level in the 2 situations.

  7. The use of cognitive cues for anticipatory strategies in a dynamic postural control task - validation of a novel approach to dual-task testing

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Læssøe, Uffe; Grarup, Bo; Bangshaab, Jette

    2016-01-01

    Introduction: Dual-task testing is relevant in the assessment of postural control. A combination of a primary (motor) and a secondary (distracting cognitive) tasks is most often used. It remains a challenge however, to standardize and monitor the cognitive task. In this study a new dual......-task testing approach with a facilitating, rather than distracting, cognitive component was evaluated. Methods: Thirty-one community-dwelling elderly and fifteen young people were tested with respect to their ability to use anticipatory postural control strategies. The motor task consisted of twenty...... two sessions. Conclusion: The dual-task test was sensitive enough to discriminate between elderly and young people. It revealed that the elderly did not utilize cognitive cues for their anticipatory postural control strategies as well as the young were able to. The test procedure was feasible...

  8. The impact of reward and punishment on skill learning depends on task demands.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Steel, Adam; Silson, Edward H; Stagg, Charlotte J; Baker, Chris I

    2016-10-27

    Reward and punishment motivate behavior, but it is unclear exactly how they impact skill performance and whether the effect varies across skills. The present study investigated the effect of reward and punishment in both a sequencing skill and a motor skill context. Participants trained on either a sequencing skill (serial reaction time task) or a motor skill (force-tracking task). Skill knowledge was tested immediately after training, and again 1 hour, 24-48 hours, and 30 days after training. We found a dissociation of the effects of reward and punishment on the tasks, primarily reflecting the impact of punishment. While punishment improved serial reaction time task performance, it impaired force-tracking task performance. In contrast to prior literature, neither reward nor punishment benefitted memory retention, arguing against the common assumption that reward ubiquitously benefits skill retention. Collectively, these results suggest that punishment impacts skilled behavior more than reward in a complex, task dependent fashion.

  9. Cognitive factors affecting free recall, cued recall, and recognition tasks in Alzheimer's disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yamagishi, Takashi; Sato, Takuya; Sato, Atsushi; Imamura, Toru

    2012-01-01

    Our aim was to identify cognitive factors affecting free recall, cued recall, and recognition tasks in patients with Alzheimer's disease (AD). We recruited 349 consecutive AD patients who attended a memory clinic. Each patient was assessed using the Alzheimer's Disease Assessment Scale (ADAS) and the extended 3-word recall test. In this task, each patient was asked to freely recall 3 previously presented words. If patients could not recall 1 or more of the target words, the examiner cued their recall by providing the category of the target word and then provided a forced-choice recognition of the target word with 2 distracters. The patients were divided into groups according to the results of the free recall, cued recall, and recognition tasks. Multivariate logistic regression analysis for repeated measures was carried out to evaluate the net effects of cognitive factors on the free recall, cued recall, and recognition tasks after controlling for the effects of age and recent memory deficit. Performance on the ADAS Orientation task was found to be related to performance on the free and cued recall tasks, performance on the ADAS Following Commands task was found to be related to performance on the cued recall task, and performance on the ADAS Ideational Praxis task was found to be related to performance on the free recall, cued recall, and recognition tasks. The extended 3-word recall test reflects deficits in a wider range of memory and other cognitive processes, including memory retention after interference, divided attention, and executive functions, compared with word-list recall tasks. The characteristics of the extended 3-word recall test may be advantageous for evaluating patients' memory impairments in daily living.

  10. Cognitive Factors Affecting Free Recall, Cued Recall, and Recognition Tasks in Alzheimer’s Disease

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Takashi Yamagishi

    2012-07-01

    Full Text Available Background/Aims: Our aim was to identify cognitive factors affecting free recall, cued recall, and recognition tasks in patients with Alzheimer’s disease (AD. Subjects: We recruited 349 consecutive AD patients who attended a memory clinic. Methods: Each patient was assessed using the Alzheimer’s Disease Assessment Scale (ADAS and the extended 3-word recall test. In this task, each patient was asked to freely recall 3 previously presented words. If patients could not recall 1 or more of the target words, the examiner cued their recall by providing the category of the target word and then provided a forced-choice recognition of the target word with 2 distracters. The patients were divided into groups according to the results of the free recall, cued recall, and recognition tasks. Multivariate logistic regression analysis for repeated measures was carried out to evaluate the net effects of cognitive factors on the free recall, cued recall, and recognition tasks after controlling for the effects of age and recent memory deficit. Results: Performance on the ADAS Orientation task was found to be related to performance on the free and cued recall tasks, performance on the ADAS Following Commands task was found to be related to performance on the cued recall task, and performance on the ADAS Ideational Praxis task was found to be related to performance on the free recall, cued recall, and recognition tasks. Conclusion: The extended 3-word recall test reflects deficits in a wider range of memory and other cognitive processes, including memory retention after interference, divided attention, and executive functions, compared with word-list recall tasks. The characteristics of the extended 3-word recall test may be advantageous for evaluating patients’ memory impairments in daily living.

  11. Implicit Behavioral Change in Response to Cognitive Tasks in Alzheimer Disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bomilcar, Iris; Morris, Robin G; Brown, Richard G; Mograbi, Daniel C

    2018-03-01

    Lack of awareness about impairments is commonly found in Alzheimer disease (AD), but recent evidence suggests that patients may respond to the experience of illness despite limited awareness. In this study, we explored whether implicit emotional responses to experiences of failure in cognitive tasks would result in longer-term change in behavior. Twenty-two patients with AD were seen 1 week after a previous session in which they performed computer tasks that had been manipulated to be either too difficult (failure condition) or very easy (success condition) for them. At the second session, both types of tasks were set to have medium difficulty and were administered so that the participants decided how long to persist on each task. Task persistence was determined by relative time spent doing the tasks, considering that participants would be more likely to stop performing tasks in which they had experienced failure during the first session. Task persistence in the second session was not affected by performance in the first session. However, when participants' awareness of performance in the first session was taken into account, differences were found in persistence between tasks in the second session. During the second session, participants stopped performing tasks after a sequence of errors. There were no self-reported changes in motivation or enjoyment in response to task failure. These findings suggest that implicit learning of task valence may be compromised in AD, but that initial moments of awareness of performance may influence long-term adaptation in unaware patients.

  12. Stereotype Threat Effects on Learning From a Cognitively Demanding Mathematics Lesson.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lyons, Emily McLaughlin; Simms, Nina; Begolli, Kreshnik N; Richland, Lindsey E

    2018-03-01

    Stereotype threat-a situational context in which individuals are concerned about confirming a negative stereotype-is often shown to impact test performance, with one hypothesized mechanism being that cognitive resources are temporarily co-opted by intrusive thoughts and worries, leading individuals to underperform despite high content knowledge and ability (see Schmader & Beilock, ). We test here whether stereotype threat may also impact initial student learning and knowledge formation when experienced prior to instruction. Predominantly African American fifth-grade students provided either their race or the date before a videotaped, conceptually demanding mathematics lesson. Students who gave their race retained less learning over time, enjoyed the lesson less, reported a diminished desire to learn more, and were less likely to choose to engage in an optional math activity. The detrimental impact was greatest among students with high baseline cognitive resources. While stereotype threat has been well documented to harm test performance, the finding that effects extend to initial learning suggests that stereotype threat's contribution to achievement gaps may be greatly underestimated. Copyright © 2017 Cognitive Science Society, Inc.

  13. An empirical investigation of operator performance in cognitively demanding simulated emergencies

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Roth, E.M.; Mumaw, R.J.; Lewis, P.M.

    1994-07-01

    This report documents the results of an empirical study of nuclear power plant operator performance in cognitively demanding simulated emergencies. During emergencies operators follow highly prescriptive written procedures. The objectives of the study were to understand and document what role higher-level cognitive activities such as diagnosis, or more generally 'situation assessment', play in guiding operator performance, given that operators utilize procedures in responding to the events. The study examined crew performance in variants of two emergencies: (1) an Interfacing System Loss of Coolant Accident and (2) a Loss of Heat Sink scenario. Data on operator performance were collected using training simulators at two plant sites. Up to 11 crews from each plant participated in each of two simulated emergencies for a total of 38 cases. Crew performance was videotaped and partial transcripts were produced and analyzed. The results revealed a number of instances where higher-level cognitive activities such as situation assessment and response planning enabled crews to handle aspects of the situation that were not fully addressed by the procedures. This report documents these cases and discusses their implications for the development and evaluation of training and control room aids, as well as for human reliability analyses

  14. High-Frequency Binaural Beats Increase Cognitive Flexibility: Evidence from Dual-Task Crosstalk.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hommel, Bernhard; Sellaro, Roberta; Fischer, Rico; Borg, Saskia; Colzato, Lorenza S

    2016-01-01

    Increasing evidence suggests that cognitive-control processes can be configured to optimize either persistence of information processing (by amplifying competition between decision-making alternatives and top-down biasing of this competition) or flexibility (by dampening competition and biasing). We investigated whether high-frequency binaural beats, an auditory illusion suspected to act as a cognitive enhancer, have an impact on cognitive-control configuration. We hypothesized that binaural beats in the gamma range bias the cognitive-control style toward flexibility, which in turn should increase the crosstalk between tasks in a dual-task paradigm. We replicated earlier findings that the reaction time in the first-performed task is sensitive to the compatibility between the responses in the first and the second task-an indication of crosstalk. As predicted, exposing participants to binaural beats in the gamma range increased this effect as compared to a control condition in which participants were exposed to a continuous tone of 340 Hz. These findings provide converging evidence that the cognitive-control style can be systematically biased by inducing particular internal states; that high-frequency binaural beats bias the control style toward more flexibility; and that different styles are implemented by changing the strength of local competition and top-down bias.

  15. Increased Task Demand during Spatial Memory Testing Recruits the Anterior Cingulate Cortex

    Science.gov (United States)

    Carr, Joshua K.; Fournier, Neil M.; Lehmann, Hugo

    2016-01-01

    We examined whether increasing retrieval difficulty in a spatial memory task would promote the recruitment of the anterior cingulate cortex (ACC) similar to what is typically observed during remote memory retrieval. Rats were trained on the hidden platform version of the Morris Water Task and tested three or 30 d later. Retrieval difficulty was…

  16. Adaptive strategy changes as a function of task demands : a study of car drivers

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Cnossen, Fokie; Meijman, Theo; Rothengatter, Talib

    2004-01-01

    When drivers perform additional tasks while driving, research shows conflicting results: primary driving performance may deteriorate but adaptive changes such as reducing driving speed have also been noted. We hypothesized that the nature of the secondary task may be important: drivers may give more

  17. Blue or red? Exploring the effect of color on cognitive task performances.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mehta, Ravi; Zhu, Rui Juliet

    2009-02-27

    Existing research reports inconsistent findings with regard to the effect of color on cognitive task performances. Some research suggests that blue or green leads to better performances than red; other studies record the opposite. Current work reconciles this discrepancy. We demonstrate that red (versus blue) color induces primarily an avoidance (versus approach) motivation (study 1, n = 69) and that red enhances performance on a detail-oriented task, whereas blue enhances performance on a creative task (studies 2 and 3, n = 208 and 118). Further, we replicate these results in the domains of product design (study 4, n = 42) and persuasive message evaluation (study 5, n = 161) and show that these effects occur outside of individuals' consciousness (study 6, n = 68). We also provide process evidence suggesting that the activation of alternative motivations mediates the effect of color on cognitive task performances.

  18. Cognitive task analysis and the design of computerized operator aids

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Andersson, H.

    1985-01-01

    The new technological possibilities have led to the initiation of many projects for the design and evaluation of computerized operator support systems to be implemented in nuclear power plant control rooms. A typical finding so far has been that operators often have a positive attitude towards such systems but still don't use them very much, mostly because they find almost the same information on the conventional control boards which they are accustomed to use. Still, however, there is a widely shared belief that conventional control rooms have short-comings that make the use of computerized aids necessary. One reason for the limited success so far is that the new systems often are poorly integrated with the existing conventional instrumentation and with the working procedures. The reluctance to use new computer based aids, despite their nice features, is therefore probably caused by an inadequate task analysis made prior to the design of these computerized operator support systems

  19. Cognitive Factors Affecting Free Recall, Cued Recall, and Recognition Tasks in Alzheimer’s Disease

    OpenAIRE

    Takashi Yamagishi; Takuya Sato; Atsushi Sato; Toru Imamura

    2012-01-01

    Background/Aims: Our aim was to identify cognitive factors affecting free recall, cued recall, and recognition tasks in patients with Alzheimer’s disease (AD). Subjects: We recruited 349 consecutive AD patients who attended a memory clinic. Methods: Each patient was assessed using the Alzheimer’s Disease Assessment Scale (ADAS) and the extended 3-word recall test. In this task, each patient was asked to freely recall 3 previously presented words. If patients could not recall 1 or more of the ...

  20. Sources of Cognitive Inflexibility in Set-Shifting Tasks: Insights Into Developmental Theories From Adult Data

    OpenAIRE

    Dick, Anthony Steven

    2012-01-01

    Two experiments examined processes underlying cognitive inflexibility in set-shifting tasks typically used to assess the development of executive function in children. Adult participants performed a Flexible Item Selection Task (FIST) that requires shifting from categorizing by one dimension (e.g., color) to categorizing by a second orthogonal dimension (e.g., shape). The experiments showed performance of the FIST involves suppression of the representation of the ignored dimension; response t...

  1. Developmental change in cognitive organization underlying stroop tasks of Japanese orthographies.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Toma, C; Toshima, T

    1989-01-01

    Cognitive processes underlying Stroop interference tasks of two Japanese orthographies, hiragana (a phonetic orthography) and kanji (a logographic orthography) were studied from the developmental point of view. Four age groups (first, second, third graders, and university students) were employed as subjects. Significant interference was yielded both in the hiragana and in the kanji version. Performance time on interference task decreased with age. For elementary school children, the error frequency on the interference task was higher than that on the task of naming patch colors or on the task of reading words printed in black ink, but the error frequencies did not differ among tasks for university students. In the interference task more word reading errors were yielded in the kanji version than in the hiragana version during and after third grade. The findings suggested that (1) the recognition system of hiragana and of kanji becomes qualitatively different during and after third grade, (2) the integrative system, which organizes cognitive processes underlying Stroop task, develops with age, and (3) efficiency of the organization increases with age.

  2. Cognitive load and task condition in event- and time-based prospective memory: an experimental investigation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Khan, Azizuddin; Sharma, Narendra K; Dixit, Shikha

    2008-09-01

    Prospective memory is memory for the realization of delayed intention. Researchers distinguish 2 kinds of prospective memory: event- and time-based (G. O. Einstein & M. A. McDaniel, 1990). Taking that distinction into account, the present authors explored participants' comparative performance under event- and time-based tasks. In an experimental study of 80 participants, the authors investigated the roles of cognitive load and task condition in prospective memory. Cognitive load (low vs. high) and task condition (event- vs. time-based task) were the independent variables. Accuracy in prospective memory was the dependent variable. Results showed significant differential effects under event- and time-based tasks. However, the effect of cognitive load was more detrimental in time-based prospective memory. Results also revealed that time monitoring is critical in successful performance of time estimation and so in time-based prospective memory. Similarly, participants' better performance on the event-based prospective memory task showed that they acted on the basis of environment cues. Event-based prospective memory was environmentally cued; time-based prospective memory required self-initiation.

  3. Effect of cognitive and motor tasks on postural stability in Parkinson's disease: a posturographic study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Marchese, Roberta; Bove, Marco; Abbruzzese, Giovanni

    2003-06-01

    To analyse the effect of concomitant cognitive or motor task performance on balance control in Parkinson's disease (PD), we performed a posturographic study in 24 PD patients and in 20 sex- and age-matched control subjects. Postural sway was measured with eyes open (EO) and eyes closed (EC) during quiet stance and during performance of calculation or motor sequence of thumb opposition to the other fingers. No difference of centre of foot pressure (COP) parameters was observed during quiet standing (either EO or EC) between patients and controls, but visual deprivation induced in both groups a worsening of postural stability. COP area was significantly increased in PD patients during dual task performance, whereas no difference of COP path and x-y axes was observed. The effects induced by the performance of cognitive or motor task were significantly more evident in PD patients with clinical evidence of postural instability (presence of prior falls in the history). This study demonstrates that dual task interference on postural control can be observed in PD patients during performance of cognitive as well as motor tasks. The balance deterioration during dual task performance was significantly enhanced in patients with history of prior falls. These findings have some implications for the strategies to be used in reducing the risk of fall in PD. Copyright 2003 Movement Disorder Society

  4. A Content Analysis of General Chemistry Laboratory Manuals for Evidence of Higher-Order Cognitive Tasks

    Science.gov (United States)

    Domin, Daniel S.

    1999-01-01

    The science laboratory instructional environment is ideal for fostering the development of problem-solving, manipulative, and higher-order thinking skills: the skills needed by today's learner to compete in an ever increasing technology-based society. This paper reports the results of a content analysis of ten general chemistry laboratory manuals. Three experiments from each manual were examined for evidence of higher-order cognitive activities. Analysis was based upon the six major cognitive categories of Bloom's Taxonomy of Educational Objectives: knowledge, comprehension, application, analysis, synthesis, and evaluation. The results of this study show that the overwhelming majority of general chemistry laboratory manuals provide tasks that require the use of only the lower-order cognitive skills: knowledge, comprehension, and application. Two of the laboratory manuals were disparate in having activities that utilized higher-order cognition. I describe the instructional strategies used within these manuals to foster higher-order cognitive development.

  5. Dissociating the Influence of Affective Word Content and Cognitive Processing Demands on the Late Positive Potential.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nowparast Rostami, Hadiseh; Ouyang, Guang; Bayer, Mareike; Schacht, Annekathrin; Zhou, Changsong; Sommer, Werner

    2016-01-01

    The late positive potential (LPP) elicited by affective stimuli in the event-related brain potential (ERP) is often assumed to be a member of the P3 family. The present study addresses the relationship of the LPP to the classic P3b in a published data set, using a non-parametric permutation test for topographical comparisons, and residue iteration decomposition to assess the temporal features of the LPP and the P3b by decomposing the ERP into several component clusters according to their latency variability. The experiment orthogonally manipulated arousal and valence of words, which were either read or judged for lexicality. High-arousing and positive valenced words induced a larger LPP than low-arousing and negative valenced words, respectively, and the LDT elicited a larger P3b than reading. The experimental manipulation of arousal, valence, and task yielded main effects without any interactions on ERP amplitude in the LPP/P3b time range. The arousal and valence effects partially differed from the task effect in scalp topography; in addition, whereas the late positive component elicited by affective stimuli, defined as LPP, was stimulus-locked, the late positive component elicited by task demand, defined as P3b, was mainly latency-variable. Therefore LPP and P3b manifest different subcomponents.

  6. Guidelines for Cognitive Behavioral Training within Doctoral Psychology Programs in the United States: Report of the Inter-Organizational Task Force on Cognitive and Behavioral Psychology Doctoral Education

    Science.gov (United States)

    Klepac, Robert K.; Ronan, George F.; Andrasik, Frank; Arnold, Kevin D.; Belar, Cynthia D.; Berry, Sharon L.; Christofff, Karen A.; Craighead, Linda W.; Dougher, Michael J.; Dowd, E. Thomas; Herbert, James D.; McFarr, Lynn M.; Rizvi, Shireen L.; Sauer, Eric M.; Strauman, Timothy J.

    2012-01-01

    The Association for Behavioral and Cognitive Therapies initiated an interorganizational task force to develop guidelines for integrated education and training in cognitive and behavioral psychology at the doctoral level in the United States. Fifteen task force members representing 16 professional associations participated in a yearlong series of…

  7. Acute exercise improves cognition in the depressed elderly: the effect of dual-tasks

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Paulo Eduardo Vasques

    2011-01-01

    Full Text Available OBJECTIVE: The goal of this study was to assess the acute effect of physical exercise on the cognitive function of depressed elderly patients in a dual-task experiment. INTRODUCTION: Physical exercise has a positive effect on the brain and may even act as a treatment for major depressive disorder. However, the effects of acute cardiovascular exercise on cognitive function during and after one session of aerobic training in elderly depressive patients are not known. METHODS: Ten elderly subjects diagnosed with major depressive disorder performed neuropsychological tests during and after a moderate physical exercise session (65-75%HRmax. A Digit Span Test (Forward and Backward and a Stroop Color-Word Test were used to assess cognitive function. The elderly participants walked on an electric treadmill for 30 minutes and underwent the same cognitive testing before, during, immediately after, and 15 minutes after the exercise session. In the control session, the same cognitive testing was conducted, but without exercise training. RESULTS: The results of the Digit Span Test did not change between the control and the exercise sessions. The results of the Stroop Color-Word Test improved after physical exercise, indicating a positive effect of exercise on cognition. CONCLUSIONS: These data suggest that the cognitive functions of depressed elderly persons, especially attention and inhibitory control, are not impaired during and after an acute session of physical exercise. In contrast, the effect of dual-tasks showed beneficial results for these subjects, mainly after exercise. The dual-task may be a safe and useful tool for assessing cognitive function.

  8. Prefrontal Cortical Inactivations Decrease Willingness to Expend Cognitive Effort on a Rodent Cost/Benefit Decision-Making Task.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hosking, Jay G; Cocker, Paul J; Winstanley, Catharine A

    2016-04-01

    Personal success often necessitates expending greater effort for greater reward but, equally important, also requires judicious use of our limited cognitive resources (e.g., attention). Previous animal models have shown that the prelimbic (PL) and infralimbic (IL) regions of the prefrontal cortex (PFC) are not involved in (physical) effort-based choice, whereas human studies have demonstrated PFC contributions to (mental) effort. Here, we utilize the rat Cognitive Effort Task (rCET) to probe PFC's role in effort-based decision making. In the rCET, animals can choose either an easy trial, where the attentional demand is low but the reward (sugar) is small or a difficult trial on which both the attentional demand and reward are greater. Temporary inactivation of PL and IL decreased all animals' willingness to expend mental effort and increased animals' distractibility; PL inactivations more substantially affected performance (i.e., attention), whereas IL inactivations increased motor impulsivity. These data imply that the PFC contributes to attentional resources, and when these resources are diminished, animals shift their choice (via other brain regions) accordingly. Thus, one novel therapeutic approach to deficits in effort expenditure may be to focus on the resources that such decision making requires, rather than the decision-making process per se. © The Author 2015. Published by Oxford University Press. All rights reserved. For Permissions, please e-mail: journals.permissions@oup.com.

  9. Mutual interaction effects between discomfort and cognitive task performance in clothing systems

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Hartog, E.A. den; Koerhuis, C.L.

    2016-01-01

    The focus of this study was to establish a relationship between physical discomfort and performance. Eleven healthy male subjects participated in this pilot study. The subjects performed a 2-h protocol without and with significant thermal and mechanical discomfort. Various cognitive tasks were

  10. Relative Age Effects in a Cognitive Task: A Case Study of Youth Chess

    Science.gov (United States)

    Helsen, Werner F.; Baker, Joseph; Schorer, Joerg; Steingröver, Christina; Wattie, Nick; Starkes, Janet L.

    2016-01-01

    The relative age effect (RAE) has been demonstrated in many youth and professional sports. In this study, we hypothesized that there would also be a RAE among youth chess players who are typically involved in a complex cognitive task without significant physical requirements. While typical RAEs have been observed in adult chess players, in this…

  11. Cognitive Developmental Level Gender, and the Development of Learned Helplessness on Mathematical Calculation and Reasoning Tasks.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Monaco, Nanci M.; Gentile, J. Ronald

    1987-01-01

    This study was designed to test whether a learned helplessness treatment would decrease performance on mathematical tasks and to extend learned helplessness findings to include the cognitive development dimension. Results showed no differential advantages to either sex in resisting effects of learned helplessness or in benefiting from strategy…

  12. Attentional Sensitization of Unconscious Cognition: Task Sets Modulate Subsequent Masked Semantic Priming

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kiefer, Markus; Martens, Ulla

    2010-01-01

    According to classical theories, automatic processes are autonomous and independent of higher level cognitive influence. In contrast, the authors propose that automatic processing depends on attentional sensitization of task-congruent processing pathways. In 3 experiments, the authors tested this hypothesis with a modified masked semantic priming…

  13. Dexamphetamine and alcohol effects in simulated driving and cognitive task performance

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Martens, Marieke Hendrikje; Simons, Ries; Ramaekers, Jan

    2011-01-01

    This study assessed the effects of dexamphetamine with and without alcohol on simulated driving and cognitive tasks. 18 subjects participated in all 4 conditions: 10 mg dexamphetamine and 0.8g/kg alcohol, 10 mg dexamphetamine only, 0.8g/kg alcohol only, and a placebo control condition. A driving

  14. An Interdisciplinary Team Project: Psychology and Computer Science Students Create Online Cognitive Tasks

    Science.gov (United States)

    Flannery, Kathleen A.; Malita, Mihaela

    2014-01-01

    We present our case study of an interdisciplinary team project for students taking either a psychology or computer science (CS) course. The project required psychology and CS students to combine their knowledge and skills to create an online cognitive task. Each interdisciplinary project team included two psychology students who conducted library…

  15. Cognitive Task Complexity Effects on L2 Writing Performance: An Application of Mixed-Methods Approaches

    Science.gov (United States)

    Abdi Tabari, Mahmoud; Ivey, Toni A.

    2015-01-01

    This paper provides a methodological review of previous research on cognitive task complexity, since the term emerged in 1995, and investigates why much research was more quantitative rather than qualitative. Moreover, it sheds light onto the studies which used the mixed-methods approach and determines which version of the mixed-methods designs…

  16. Roles of Working Memory Performance and Instructional Strategy in Complex Cognitive Task Performance

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cevik, V.; Altun, A.

    2016-01-01

    This study aims to investigate how working memory (WM) performances and instructional strategy choices affect learners' complex cognitive task performance in online environments. Three different e-learning environments were designed based on Merrill's (2006a) model of instructional strategies. The lack of experimental research on his framework is…

  17. Investigating IELTS Academic Writing Task 2 : Relationships between cognitive writing processes, text quality, and working memory

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Révész, Andrea; Michel, Marije; Lee, MinJin

    2017-01-01

    This project examined the cognitive processes and online behaviours of second language writers while performing IELTS Academic Writing Test Task 2, and the ways in which the online behaviours of test-takers relate to the quality of the text produced. An additional aim was to assess whether writing

  18. Comparable cortical activation with inferior performance in women during a novel cognitive inhibition task.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Halari, R; Kumari, V

    2005-03-07

    Men are hypothesised to perform better than women at tasks requiring cognitive inhibition. The present study applied whole-brain functional magnetic resonance imaging to investigate the neural correlates of cognitive inhibition using a novel task, requiring detection of numbers decreasing in numerical order, in relation to sex. The study involved 19 young healthy subjects (9 men, 10 women). Behavioural sex differences favouring men were found on the inhibition, but not on the automatization (i.e. detection of numbers increasing in numerical order), condition of the task. Significant areas of activation associated with cognitive inhibition included the right inferior prefrontal and bilateral dorsolateral prefrontal cortices, left inferior and superior parietal lobes, and bilateral temporal regions across men and women. No brain region was significantly differently activated in men and women. Our findings demonstrate that (a) cognitive inhibition is dependent on intact processes within frontal and parietal regions, and (b) women show inferior cognitive inhibition despite of comparable activation to men in relevant regions. Equated behavioural performance may elicit sex differences in brain activation.

  19. High-frequency binaural beats increase cognitive flexibility: evidence from dual-task crosstalk

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Bernhard Hommel

    2016-08-01

    Full Text Available Increasing evidence suggests that cognitive-control processes can be configured to optimize either persistence of information processing (by amplifying competition between decision-making alternatives and top-down biasing of this competition or flexibility (by dampening competition and biasing. We investigated whether high-frequency binaural beats, an auditory illusion suspected to act as a cognitive enhancer, have an impact on cognitive-control configuration. We hypothesized that binaural beats in the gamma range bias the cognitive-control style towards flexibility, which in turn should increase the crosstalk between tasks in a dual-task paradigm. We replicated earlier findings that the reaction time in the first-performed task is sensitive to the compatibility between the responses in the first and the second task—an indication of crosstalk. As predicted, exposing participants to binaural beats in the gamma range increased this effect as compared to a control condition in which participants were exposed to a continuous tone of 340 Hz. These findings provide converging evidence that the cognitive-control style can be systematically biased by inducing particular internal states; that high-frequency binaural beats bias the control style towards more flexibility; and that different styles are implemented by changing the strength of local competition and top-down bias.

  20. Snack purchasing is healthier when the cognitive demands of choice are reduced: A randomized controlled trial.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Allan, Julia L; Johnston, Marie; Campbell, Neil

    2015-07-01

    Individuals with inefficient executive (higher level cognitive) function have a reduced ability to resist dietary temptation. The present study aimed to design and test a theory-based point-of-purchase intervention for coffee shops that reduced the calorie content of customers' purchases by reducing the need for executive function (EF) at the moment of choice. Key facets of EF were identified by a multidisciplinary group and used to develop a point-of-purchase intervention (signage). This intervention was evaluated in a randomized controlled trial (RCT) in a public coffee shop on consumer purchases of >20,000 snacks and drinks over 12 weeks. A sample of customers (n = 128) was recruited to complete an embedded cross-sectional study measuring EF strength, dietary intentions, typical purchases, and purchases made after exposure to the intervention. The proportion of snack purchases that were high in calorie reduced significantly (t(10) = 2.34, p = .04) in intervention weeks relative to control. High calorie drink purchases were also lower in intervention than control weeks, however, this difference was not significant (t(10) = 1.56, p = .15). On average, customers purchased items containing 66 calories customer behavior increased as EF strength decreased (β = .24, p = .03). The calorie content of cafe purchases can be lowered by reducing the cognitive demands of healthy food choice at the moment of purchase, especially in those with poor EF. Environmental changes like these have the potential to help achieve population weight control. (c) 2015 APA, all rights reserved.

  1. A new computational account of cognitive control over reinforcement-based decision-making: Modeling of a probabilistic learning task.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zendehrouh, Sareh

    2015-11-01

    Recent work on decision-making field offers an account of dual-system theory for decision-making process. This theory holds that this process is conducted by two main controllers: a goal-directed system and a habitual system. In the reinforcement learning (RL) domain, the habitual behaviors are connected with model-free methods, in which appropriate actions are learned through trial-and-error experiences. However, goal-directed behaviors are associated with model-based methods of RL, in which actions are selected using a model of the environment. Studies on cognitive control also suggest that during processes like decision-making, some cortical and subcortical structures work in concert to monitor the consequences of decisions and to adjust control according to current task demands. Here a computational model is presented based on dual system theory and cognitive control perspective of decision-making. The proposed model is used to simulate human performance on a variant of probabilistic learning task. The basic proposal is that the brain implements a dual controller, while an accompanying monitoring system detects some kinds of conflict including a hypothetical cost-conflict one. The simulation results address existing theories about two event-related potentials, namely error related negativity (ERN) and feedback related negativity (FRN), and explore the best account of them. Based on the results, some testable predictions are also presented. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  2. Demographic Variables and Selective, Sustained Attention and Planning through Cognitive Tasks among Healthy Adults

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Afsaneh Zarghi

    2011-04-01

    Full Text Available Introduction: Cognitive tasks are considered to be applicable and appropriate in assessing cognitive domains. The purpose of our study is to determine the relationship existence between variables of age, sex and education with selective, sustained attention and planning abilities by means of computerized cognitive tasks among healthy adults. Methods: A cross-sectional study was implemented during 6 months from June to November, 2010 on 84 healthy adults (42 male and 42 female. The whole participants performed computerized CPT, STROOP and TOL tests after being content and trained. Results: The obtained data indicate that there is a significant correlation coefficient between age, sex and education variables (p<0.05. Discussion: The above-mentioned tests can be used to assess selective, sustained attention and planning.

  3. Stroop-like effects in a new-code learning task: A cognitive load theory perspective.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hazan-Liran, Batel; Miller, Paul

    2017-09-01

    To determine whether and how learning is biased by competing task-irrelevant information that creates extraneous cognitive load, we assessed the efficiency of university students with a learning paradigm in two experiments. The paradigm asked participants to learn associations between eight words and eight digits. We manipulated congruity of the digits' ink colour with the words' semantics. In Experiment 1 word stimuli were colour words (e.g., blue, yellow) and in Experiment 2 colour-related word concepts (e.g., sky, banana). Marked benefits and costs on learning due to variation in extraneous cognitive load originating from processing task-irrelevant information were evident. Implications for cognitive load theory and schooling are discussed.

  4. Eldercare Demands, Mental Health, and Work Performance : The Moderating Role of Satisfaction With Eldercare Tasks

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Zacher, Hannes; Jimmieson, Nerina L.; Winter, Gabriele

    Due to demographic changes, a growing number of employees provide in-home care to an elderly family member. Previous research suggested a negative relationship between employees' eldercare demands and their work performance. However, the empirical nature of this relationship and its boundary

  5. Dual-task during gait between elderly with mild cognitive impairment and Alzheimer: systematic review

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Vanessa Santa Rosa Bragatto

    Full Text Available Abstract Introduction: Studies report that mobility changes could be present in early stages of Alzheimer’s disease (AD or even in previous stages, such as mild cognitive impairment (MCI. The use of motor tests, involving dual task, could facilitate screening and differentiation between elderly with AD and MCI. Objective: to verify if gait tests associated with secondary tasks could differentiate elderly with AD and MCI. Methods: We conducted a systematic review in Pubmed, Web of Science, Medline and Scielo databases. Of the articles included, we collected information about year of the study, characteristics of the sample and the dual task test studied. Results: The databases were accessed during November 2014 and August 2015 and a total of 198 scientific papers was obtained. After reading first the summaries and then the full texts, five studies were inserted in the review. Elderly with AD presented a reduction of gait speed and stride length, using executive functions and countdown as secondary cognitive tasks. The type of MCI appears to influence the differentiation with AD. Conclusion: The review showed that some gait tests associated with a secondary task differentiate elderly with AD and MCI. It emphasizes the need of new studies involving this issue in order to obtain cut-off points and facilitate prevention, early diagnosis and observation of cognitive impairment’s evolution in clinical practice of elderly.

  6. Neural Correlates of Changes in a Visual Search Task due to Cognitive Training in Seniors

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Nele Wild-Wall

    2012-01-01

    Full Text Available This study aimed to elucidate the underlying neural sources of near transfer after a multidomain cognitive training in older participants in a visual search task. Participants were randomly assigned to a social control, a no-contact control and a training group, receiving a 4-month paper-pencil and PC-based trainer guided cognitive intervention. All participants were tested in a before and after session with a conjunction visual search task. Performance and event-related potentials (ERPs suggest that the cognitive training improved feature processing of the stimuli which was expressed in an increased rate of target detection compared to the control groups. This was paralleled by enhanced amplitudes of the frontal P2 in the ERP and by higher activation in lingual and parahippocampal brain areas which are discussed to support visual feature processing. Enhanced N1 and N2 potentials in the ERP for nontarget stimuli after cognitive training additionally suggest improved attention and subsequent processing of arrays which were not immediately recognized as targets. Possible test repetition effects were confined to processes of stimulus categorisation as suggested by the P3b potential. The results show neurocognitive plasticity in aging after a broad cognitive training and allow pinpointing the functional loci of effects induced by cognitive training.

  7. Cognitive and emotional demands of black humour processing: the role of intelligence, aggressiveness and mood.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Willinger, Ulrike; Hergovich, Andreas; Schmoeger, Michaela; Deckert, Matthias; Stoettner, Susanne; Bunda, Iris; Witting, Andrea; Seidler, Melanie; Moser, Reinhilde; Kacena, Stefanie; Jaeckle, David; Loader, Benjamin; Mueller, Christian; Auff, Eduard

    2017-05-01

    Humour processing is a complex information-processing task that is dependent on cognitive and emotional aspects which presumably influence frame-shifting and conceptual blending, mental operations that underlie humour processing. The aim of the current study was to find distinctive groups of subjects with respect to black humour processing, intellectual capacities, mood disturbance and aggressiveness. A total of 156 adults rated black humour cartoons and conducted measurements of verbal and nonverbal intelligence, mood disturbance and aggressiveness. Cluster analysis yields three groups comprising following properties: (1) moderate black humour preference and moderate comprehension; average nonverbal and verbal intelligence; low mood disturbance and moderate aggressiveness; (2) low black humour preference and moderate comprehension; average nonverbal and verbal intelligence, high mood disturbance and high aggressiveness; and (3) high black humour preference and high comprehension; high nonverbal and verbal intelligence; no mood disturbance and low aggressiveness. Age and gender do not differ significantly, differences in education level can be found. Black humour preference and comprehension are positively associated with higher verbal and nonverbal intelligence as well as higher levels of education. Emotional instability and higher aggressiveness apparently lead to decreased levels of pleasure when dealing with black humour. These results support the hypothesis that humour processing involves cognitive as well as affective components and suggest that these variables influence the execution of frame-shifting and conceptual blending in the course of humour processing.

  8. The impact of occipital lobe cortical thickness on cognitive task performance: An investigation in Huntington's Disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Johnson, Eileanoir B; Rees, Elin M; Labuschagne, Izelle; Durr, Alexandra; Leavitt, Blair R; Roos, Raymund A C; Reilmann, Ralf; Johnson, Hans; Hobbs, Nicola Z; Langbehn, Douglas R; Stout, Julie C; Tabrizi, Sarah J; Scahill, Rachael I

    2015-12-01

    The occipital lobe is an important visual processing region of the brain. Following consistent findings of early neural changes in the occipital lobe in Huntington's Disease (HD), we examined cortical thickness across four occipital regions in premanifest (preHD) and early HD groups compared with controls. Associations between cortical thickness in gene positive individuals and performance on six cognitive tasks, each with a visual component, were examined. In addition, the association between cortical thickness in gene positive participants and one non-visual motor task was also examined for comparison. Cortical thickness was determined using FreeSurfer on T1-weighted 3T MR datasets from controls (N=97), preHD (N=109) and HD (N=69) from the TRACK-HD study. Regression models were fitted to assess between-group differences in cortical thickness, and relationships between performance on the cognitive tasks, the motor task and occipital thickness were examined in a subset of gene-positive participants (N=141). Thickness of the occipital cortex in preHD and early HD participants was reduced compared with controls. Regionally-specific associations between reduced cortical thickness and poorer performance were found for five of the six cognitive tasks, with the strongest associations in lateral occipital and lingual regions. No associations were found with the cuneus. The non-visual motor task was not associated with thickness of any region. The heterogeneous pattern of associations found in the present study suggests that occipital thickness negatively impacts cognition, but only in regions that are linked to relatively advanced visual processing (e.g., lateral occipital, lingual regions), rather than in basic visual processing regions such as the cuneus. Our results show, for the first time, the functional implications of occipital atrophy highlighted in recent studies in HD. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  9. Combined Task and Physical Demands Analyses towards a Comprehensive Human Work Model

    Science.gov (United States)

    2014-09-01

    new equipment or modifying tasks and providing training (van der Molen, Sluiter, Hulshof , Vink, & Frings-Dresen, 2005). List the Job Duties (the...00 1/SV, Defence Research and Development Canada. van der Molen, H. F., Sluiter, J. K., Hulshof , C. T. J. , Vink, P., & Frings-Dresen, M. H. W

  10. Alpha spectral power and coherence in the patients with mild cognitive impairment during a three-level working memory task

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    2007-01-01

    Objective: The functional relationship between calculated alpha band spectral power and inter-/intra-hemispheric coherence during a three-level working memory task of patients with mild cognitive impairment (MCI) was investigated. Methods:Subjects included 35 MCI patients according to the DSM-Ⅳ criteria (mean age: 62.3, SD: 6.5) and 34 healthy controls (mean age:57.4, SD: 4.0) were selected from the community at large. All subjects performed a simple calculation and recall task with three levels of working memory load while electroencephalograph (EEG) signal was recorded. The spectral EEG power was computed over alphal (8.0~10.0 Hz) and alpha2 (10.5~13.0 Hz) frequency bands and was compared between rest stage and working memory processing stage by two-way ANOVA. Post hoc testing analyzed the differences between each two levels of working memory load during task processing. The inter-hemisphere EEG coherence of frontal (F3-F4), central (C3-C4), parietal (P3-P4), temporal (T5-T6) as well as occipital (O1-O2) was compared between MCI patients and normal controls. The EEG signals from F3-C3,F4-C4, C3-P3, C4-P4, P3-O1, P4-O2, T5-C3, T6-C4, T5-P3 and T6-P4 electrode pairs resulted from the intra-hemispheric action for alphal and alpha2 frequency bands. Result: There was significantly higher EEG power from MCI patients than from normal controls both at rest and during working memory processing. Significant differences existed between rest condition and three-level working memory tasks (P<0.001). The inter- and intra-hemispheric coherence during working memory tasks showed a "drop to rise" tendency compared to that at rest condition. There was significantly higher coherence in MCI patients than in the controls.When task difficulties increased, the cortical connectivity of intra-hemispheric diminished while the inter-hemispheric connectivity dominantly maintained the cognitive processing in MCI patients. Conclusion: The results of the present study indicate that the

  11. The effect of a cognitive-motor intervention on voluntary step execution under single and dual task conditions in older adults: a randomized controlled pilot study

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Pichierri G

    2012-07-01

    Full Text Available Giuseppe Pichierri,1 Amos Coppe,1 Silvio Lorenzetti,2 Kurt Murer,1 Eling D de Bruin11Institute of Human Movement Sciences and Sport, Department of Health Sciences and Technology, ETH Zurich, Switzerland; 2Institute for Biomechanics, Department of Health Sciences and Technology, ETH Zurich, SwitzerlandBackground: This randomized controlled pilot study aimed to explore whether a cognitive-motor exercise program that combines traditional physical exercise with dance video gaming can improve the voluntary stepping responses of older adults under attention demanding dual task conditions.Methods: Elderly subjects received twice weekly cognitive-motor exercise that included progressive strength and balance training supplemented by dance video gaming for 12 weeks (intervention group. The control group received no specific intervention. Voluntary step execution under single and dual task conditions was recorded at baseline and post intervention (Week 12.Results: After intervention between-group comparison revealed significant differences for initiation time of forward steps under dual task conditions (U = 9, P = 0.034, r = 0.55 and backward steps under dual task conditions (U = 10, P = 0.045, r = 0.52 in favor of the intervention group, showing altered stepping levels in the intervention group compared to the control group.Conclusion: A cognitive-motor intervention based on strength and balance exercises with additional dance video gaming is able to improve voluntary step execution under both single and dual task conditions in older adults.Keywords: fall prevention, exercise, dance, video game

  12. Cognitive-motor interference during fine and gross motor tasks in children with Developmental Coordination Disorder (DCD).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schott, Nadja; El-Rajab, Inaam; Klotzbier, Thomas

    2016-10-01

    While typically developing children produce relatively automatized postural control processes, children with DCD seem to exhibit an automatization deficit. Dual tasks with various cognitive loads seem to be an effective way to assess the automatic deficit hypothesis. The aims of the study were: (1) to examine the effect of a concurrent cognitive task on fine and gross motor tasks in children with DCD, and (2) to determine whether the effect varied with different difficulty levels of the concurrent task. We examined dual-task performance (Trail-Making-Test, Trail-Walking-Test) in 20 children with DCD and 39 typically developing children. Based on the idea of the Trail-Making-Test, participants walked along a fixed pathway, following a prescribed path, delineated by target markers of (1) increasing sequential numbers, and (2) increasing sequential numbers and letters. The motor and cognitive dual-task effects (DTE) were calculated for each task. Regardless of the cognitive task, children with DCD performed equally well in fine and gross motor tasks, and were slower in the dual task conditions than under single task-conditions, compared with children without DCD. Increased cognitive task complexity resulted in slow trail walking as well as slower trail tracing. The motor interference for the gross motor tasks was least for the simplest conditions and greatest for the complex conditions and was more pronounced in children with DCD. Cognitive interference was low irrespective of the motor task. Children with DCD show a different approach to allocation of cognitive resources, and have difficulties making motor skills automatic. The latter notion is consistent with impaired cerebellar function and the "automatization deficit hypothesis", suggesting that any deficit in the automatization process will appear if conscious monitoring of the motor skill is made more difficult by integrating another task requiring attentional resources. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Ltd. All

  13. The effect of a secondary cognitive task on landing mechanics and jump performance.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dai, Boyi; Cook, Ross F; Meyer, Elizabeth A; Sciascia, Yvonne; Hinshaw, Taylour J; Wang, Chaoyi; Zhu, Qin

    2018-06-01

    Anterior cruciate ligament (ACL) injuries commonly occur during jump-landing tasks when individuals' attention is simultaneously allocated to other objects and tasks. The purpose of the current study was to investigate the effect of allocation of attention imposed by a secondary cognitive task on landing mechanics and jump performance. Thirty-eight recreational athletes performed a jump-landing task in three conditions: no counting, counting backward by 1 s from a randomly given number, and counting backward by 7 s from a randomly given number. Three-dimensional kinematics and ground reaction forces were collected and analysed. Participants demonstrated decreased knee flexion angles at initial contact (p = 0.001) for the counting by 1 s condition compared with the no counting condition. Participants also showed increased peak posterior and vertical ground reaction forces during the first 100 ms of landing (p ≤ 0.023) and decreased jump height (p jump performance. ACL injury risk screening protocols and injury prevention programmes may incorporate cognitive tasks into jump-landing tasks to better simulate sports environments.

  14. A comparison of the effects of a secondary task and lorazepam on cognitive performance.

    Science.gov (United States)

    File, S E

    1992-01-01

    In order to test whether the lorazepam-induced impairments in a variety of cognitive tasks were similar to those of divided attention, the effects of lorazepam (2.5 mg) in healthy volunteers were compared with those requiring subjects to perform an additional task (detecting silences superimposed onto classical music). Neither treatment impaired implicit memory or judgements of frequency. Both treatments impaired performance in tests of speed, lorazepam having the greatest effect on number cancellation and the additional task having the greatest effect on simple reaction time. Both treatments impaired performance in a coding task, in a test of explicit episodic memory and in judgements of recency (indicating impaired coding of contextual information). Lorazepam significantly reduced performance in a word completion task, but this was unimpaired in the group performing the additional task. In general, the pattern of results suggests that there are similarities between the effects of divided attention and lorazepam treatment, and that lorazepam-induced cognitive impairments are not restricted to explicit tests of episodic memory.

  15. Regional demand forecasting and simulation model: user's manual. Task 4, final report

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Parhizgari, A M

    1978-09-25

    The Department of Energy's Regional Demand Forecasting Model (RDFOR) is an econometric and simulation system designed to estimate annual fuel-sector-region specific consumption of energy for the US. Its purposes are to (1) provide the demand side of the Project Independence Evaluation System (PIES), (2) enhance our empirical insights into the structure of US energy demand, and (3) assist policymakers in their decisions on and formulations of various energy policies and/or scenarios. This report provides a self-contained user's manual for interpreting, utilizing, and implementing RDFOR simulation software packages. Chapters I and II present the theoretical structure and the simulation of RDFOR, respectively. Chapter III describes several potential scenarios which are (or have been) utilized in the RDFOR simulations. Chapter IV presents an overview of the complete software package utilized in simulation. Chapter V provides the detailed explanation and documentation of this package. The last chapter describes step-by-step implementation of the simulation package using the two scenarios detailed in Chapter III. The RDFOR model contains 14 fuels: gasoline, electricity, natural gas, distillate and residual fuels, liquid gases, jet fuel, coal, oil, petroleum products, asphalt, petroleum coke, metallurgical coal, and total fuels, spread over residential, commercial, industrial, and transportation sectors.

  16. Fatigue does not conjointly alter postural and cognitive performance when standing in a shooting position under dual-task conditions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bermejo, José Luis; García-Massó, Xavier; Paillard, Thierry; Noé, Frédéric

    2018-02-01

    This study investigated the effects of fatigue on balance control and cognitive performance in a standing shooting position. Nineteen soldiers were asked to stand while holding a rifle (single task - ST). They also had to perform this postural task while simultaneously completing a cognitive task (dual task - DT). Both the ST and DT were performed in pre- and post-fatigue conditions. In pre-fatigue, participants achieved better balance control in the DT than in the ST, thus suggesting that the increased cognitive activity associated with the DT improves balance control by shifting the attentional focus away from a highly automatised activity. In post-fatigue, balance control was degraded in both the ST and DT, while reaction time was enhanced in the first minutes following the fatiguing exercise without affecting the accuracy of response in the cognitive task, which highlights the relative independent effects of fatigue on balance control and cognitive performance.

  17. What limits dual-tasking in working memory? An investigation of the effect of sub-task demand on maintenance mechanisms employed during dual-tasking

    OpenAIRE

    Doherty, Jason Michael

    2016-01-01

    A number of models of working memory have been proposed since the seminal work of Baddeley and Hitch (1974) on the Multiple Component Model (MCM). Subsequent MCM research focussed on developing a theoretical framework based on modality-specific stores that can operate in parallel during dual-tasking. The MCM can be contrasted with theories of working memory that assume an attention-based domain-general shared resource responsible for both short term retention as well as on-line...

  18. Effect of Passive Hyperthermia on Working Memory Resources during Simple and Complex Cognitive Tasks.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gaoua, Nadia; Herrera, Christopher P; Périard, Julien D; El Massioui, Farid; Racinais, Sebastien

    2017-01-01

    The aim of this study was to verify the hypothesis that hyperthermia represents a cognitive load limiting available resources for executing concurrent cognitive tasks. Electroencephalographic activity (EEG: alpha and theta power) was obtained in 10 hyperthermic participants in HOT (50°C, 50% RH) conditions and in a normothermic state in CON (25°C, 50% RH) conditions in counterbalanced order. In each trial, EEG was measured over the frontal lobe prior to task engagement (PRE) in each condition and during simple (One Touch Stockings of Cambridge, OTS-4) and complex (OTS-6) cognitive tasks. Core (39.5 ± 0.5 vs. 36.9 ± 0.2°C) and mean skin (39.06 ± 0.3 vs. 31.6 ± 0.6°C) temperatures were significantly higher in HOT than CON ( p cognitive load. However, this load disappeared during OTS-6 together with an impaired performance, suggesting a potential saturation of the available resources.

  19. Cognitive-motor dual-task interference: A systematic review of neural correlates.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Leone, Carmela; Feys, Peter; Moumdjian, Lousin; D'Amico, Emanuele; Zappia, Mario; Patti, Francesco

    2017-04-01

    Cognitive-motor interference refers to dual-tasking (DT) interference (DTi) occurring when the simultaneous performance of a cognitive and a motor task leads to a percentage change in one or both tasks. Several theories exist to explain DTi in humans: the capacity-sharing, the bottleneck and the cross-talk theories. Numerous studies investigating whether a specific brain locus is associated with cognitive-motor DTi have been conducted, but not systematically reviewed. We aimed to review the evidences on brain activity associated with the cognitive-motor DT, in order to better understand the neurological basis of the CMi. Results were reported according to the technique used to assess brain activity. Twenty-three articles met the inclusion criteria. Out of them, nine studies used functional magnetic resonance imaging to show an additive, under-additive, over- additive, or a mixed activation pattern of the brain. Seven studies used near-infrared spectroscopy, and seven neurophysiological instruments. Yet a specific DT locus in the brain cannot be concluded from the overall current literature. Future studies are warranted to overcome the shortcomings identified. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  20. Comparing Cognitive Models of Domain Mastery and Task Performance in Algebra: Validity Evidence for a State Assessment

    Science.gov (United States)

    Warner, Zachary B.

    2013-01-01

    This study compared an expert-based cognitive model of domain mastery with student-based cognitive models of task performance for Integrated Algebra. Interpretations of student test results are limited by experts' hypotheses of how students interact with the items. In reality, the cognitive processes that students use to solve each item may be…

  1. Inhibitory and Working Memory Demands of the Day-Night Task in Children

    Science.gov (United States)

    Simpson, Andrew; Riggs, Kevin J.

    2005-01-01

    Gerstadt, Hong, and Diamond (1994) investigated the development of inhibitory control in children aged 3 1/2 - 7 years using the day-night task. In two studies we build on Gerstadt et al.'s findings with a measure of inhibitory control that can be used throughout childhood. In Study 1 (twenty-four 3 1/2-year-olds and sixteen 5-year-olds) we…

  2. Real-time changes in hippocampal energy demands during a spatial working memory task.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kealy, John; Bennett, Rachel; Woods, Barbara; Lowry, John P

    2017-05-30

    Activity-dependent changes in hippocampal energy consumption have largely been determined using microdialysis. However, real-time recordings of brain energy consumption can be more accurately achieved using amperometric sensors, allowing for sensitive real-time monitoring of concentration changes. Here, we test the theory that systemic pre-treatment with glucose in rats prevents activity-dependent decreases in hippocampal glucose levels and thus enhances their performance in a spontaneous alternation task. Male Sprague Dawley rats were implanted into the hippocampus with either: 1) microdialysis probe; or 2) an oxygen sensor and glucose biosensor co-implanted together. Animals were pre-treated with either saline or glucose (250mg/kg) 30min prior to performing a single 20-min spontaneous alternation task in a +-maze. There were no significant differences found between either treatment group in terms of spontaneous alternation performance. Additionally, there was a significant difference found between treatment groups on hippocampal glucose levels measured using microdialysis (a decrease associated with glucose pre-treatment in control animals) but not amperometry. There were significant increases in hippocampal oxygen during +-maze exploration. Combining the findings from both methods, it appears that hippocampal activity in the spontaneous alternation task does not cause an increase in glucose consumption, despite an increase in regional cerebral blood flow (using oxygen supply as an index of blood flow) and, as such, pre-treatment with glucose does not enhance spontaneous alternation performance. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  3. Cognitive task load in a naval ship control centre: from identification to prediction.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Grootjen, M; Neerincx, M A; Veltman, J A

    Deployment of information and communication technology will lead to further automation of control centre tasks and an increasing amount of information to be processed. A method for establishing adequate levels of cognitive task load for the operators in such complex environments has been developed. It is based on a model distinguishing three load factors: time occupied, task-set switching, and level of information processing. Application of the method resulted in eight scenarios for eight extremes of task load (i.e. low and high values for each load factor). These scenarios were performed by 13 teams in a high-fidelity control centre simulator of the Royal Netherlands Navy. The results show that the method provides good prediction of the task load that will actually appear in the simulator. The model allowed identification of under- and overload situations showing negative effects on operator performance corresponding to controlled experiments in a less realistic task environment. Tools proposed to keep the operator at an optimum task load are (adaptive) task allocation and interface support.

  4. Social cognition and prefrontal hemodynamic responses during a working memory task in schizophrenia.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pu, Shenghong; Nakagome, Kazuyuki; Yamada, Takeshi; Itakura, Masashi; Yamanashi, Takehiko; Yamada, Sayaka; Masai, Mieko; Miura, Akihiko; Yamauchi, Takahira; Satake, Takahiro; Iwata, Masaaki; Nagata, Izumi; Roberts, David L; Kaneko, Koichi

    2016-03-01

    Social cognition is an important determinant of functional impairment in schizophrenia, but its relationship with the prefrontal functional abnormalities associated with the condition is still unclear. The present study aimed to explore the relationship between social cognition and prefrontal function in patients with schizophrenia using 52-channel near-infrared spectroscopy (NIRS). Twenty-six patients with schizophrenia and 26 age-, gender-, and intelligence quotient-matched healthy controls (HCs) participated in the study. Hemodynamic responses in the prefrontal and superior temporal cortical regions were assessed during a working memory task using NIRS. Social cognition was assessed using the Social Cognition Screening Questionnaire (SCSQ). The observed hemodynamic responses were significantly reduced in the lateral prefrontal cortex (PFC), the frontopolar cortex, and temporal regions in subjects with schizophrenia compared to HCs. Additionally, lateral PFC hemodynamic responses assessed during the working memory task demonstrated a strong positive correlation with the SCSQ theory of mind (ToM) subscale score even after controlling for working memory performance. These results suggest that ToM integrity is closely related to lateral PFC functional abnormalities found in patients with schizophrenia. In addition, this study provides evidence to suggest that NIRS could be used to identify biomarkers of social cognition function in subjects with schizophrenia.

  5. Cognitive impairment after traumatic brain injury: a functional magnetic resonance imaging study using the Stroop task

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Soeda, Akio; Iwama, Toru [Gifu University School of Medicine, Department of Neurosurgery, Gifu City (Japan); Nakashima, Toshihiko; Okumura, Ayumi; Shinoda, Jun [Kizawa Memorial Hospital, Chubu Medical Center for Prolonged Traumatic Brain Dysfunction, Department of Neurosurgery, Minokamo (Japan); Kuwata, Kazuo [Gifu University School of Medicine, Department of Biochemistry and Biophysics, Gifu (Japan)

    2005-07-01

    The anterior cingulate cortex (ACC) plays a key role in cognition, motor function, and emotion processing. However, little is known about how traumatic brain injury (TBI) affects the ACC system. Our purpose was to compare, by functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) studies, the patterns of cortical activation in patients with cognitive impairment after TBI and those of normal subjects. Cortical activation maps of 11 right-handed healthy control subjects and five TBI patients with cognitive impairment were recorded in response to a Stroop task during a block-designed fMRI experiment. Statistical parametric mapping (SPM99) was used for individual subjects and group analysis. In TBI patients and controls, cortical activation, found in similar regions of the frontal, occipital, and parietal lobes, resembled patterns of activation documented in previous neuroimaging studies of the Stroop task in healthy controls. However, the TBI patients showed a relative decrease in ACC activity compared with the controls. Cognitive impairment in TBI patients seems to be associated with alterations in functional cerebral activity, especially less activation of the ACC. These changes are probably the result of destruction of neural networks after diffuse axonal injury and may reflect cortical disinhibition attributable to disconnection or compensation for an inefficient cognitive process. (orig.)

  6. Cognitive impairment after traumatic brain injury: a functional magnetic resonance imaging study using the Stroop task

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Soeda, Akio; Iwama, Toru; Nakashima, Toshihiko; Okumura, Ayumi; Shinoda, Jun; Kuwata, Kazuo

    2005-01-01

    The anterior cingulate cortex (ACC) plays a key role in cognition, motor function, and emotion processing. However, little is known about how traumatic brain injury (TBI) affects the ACC system. Our purpose was to compare, by functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) studies, the patterns of cortical activation in patients with cognitive impairment after TBI and those of normal subjects. Cortical activation maps of 11 right-handed healthy control subjects and five TBI patients with cognitive impairment were recorded in response to a Stroop task during a block-designed fMRI experiment. Statistical parametric mapping (SPM99) was used for individual subjects and group analysis. In TBI patients and controls, cortical activation, found in similar regions of the frontal, occipital, and parietal lobes, resembled patterns of activation documented in previous neuroimaging studies of the Stroop task in healthy controls. However, the TBI patients showed a relative decrease in ACC activity compared with the controls. Cognitive impairment in TBI patients seems to be associated with alterations in functional cerebral activity, especially less activation of the ACC. These changes are probably the result of destruction of neural networks after diffuse axonal injury and may reflect cortical disinhibition attributable to disconnection or compensation for an inefficient cognitive process. (orig.)

  7. The reliability paradox: Why robust cognitive tasks do not produce reliable individual differences.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hedge, Craig; Powell, Georgina; Sumner, Petroc

    2017-07-19

    Individual differences in cognitive paradigms are increasingly employed to relate cognition to brain structure, chemistry, and function. However, such efforts are often unfruitful, even with the most well established tasks. Here we offer an explanation for failures in the application of robust cognitive paradigms to the study of individual differences. Experimental effects become well established - and thus those tasks become popular - when between-subject variability is low. However, low between-subject variability causes low reliability for individual differences, destroying replicable correlations with other factors and potentially undermining published conclusions drawn from correlational relationships. Though these statistical issues have a long history in psychology, they are widely overlooked in cognitive psychology and neuroscience today. In three studies, we assessed test-retest reliability of seven classic tasks: Eriksen Flanker, Stroop, stop-signal, go/no-go, Posner cueing, Navon, and Spatial-Numerical Association of Response Code (SNARC). Reliabilities ranged from 0 to .82, being surprisingly low for most tasks given their common use. As we predicted, this emerged from low variance between individuals rather than high measurement variance. In other words, the very reason such tasks produce robust and easily replicable experimental effects - low between-participant variability - makes their use as correlational tools problematic. We demonstrate that taking such reliability estimates into account has the potential to qualitatively change theoretical conclusions. The implications of our findings are that well-established approaches in experimental psychology and neuropsychology may not directly translate to the study of individual differences in brain structure, chemistry, and function, and alternative metrics may be required.

  8. A Work-Demand Analysis Compatible with Preemption-Aware Scheduling for Power-Aware Real-Time Tasks

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Da-Ren Chen

    2013-01-01

    Full Text Available Due to the importance of slack time utilization for power-aware scheduling algorithms,we propose a work-demand analysis method called parareclamation algorithm (PRA to increase slack time utilization of the existing real-time DVS algorithms. PRA is an online scheduling for power-aware real-time tasks under rate-monotonic (RM policy. It can be implemented and fully compatible with preemption-aware or transition-aware scheduling algorithms without increasing their computational complexities. The key technique of the heuristics method doubles the analytical interval and turns the deferrable workload out the potential slack time. Theoretical proofs show that PRA guarantees the task deadlines in a feasible RM schedule and takes linear time and space complexities. Experimental results indicate that the proposed method combining the preemption-aware methods seamlessly reduces the energy consumption by 14% on average over their original algorithms.

  9. The Effect of Corrective Feedback on Performance in Basic Cognitive Tasks: An Analysis of RT Components

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Carmen Moret-Tatay

    2016-12-01

    Full Text Available The current work examines the effect of trial-by-trial feedback about correct and error responding on performance in two basic cognitive tasks: a classic Stroop task (n = 40 and a color-word matching task ('n' = 30. Standard measures of both RT and accuracy were examined in addition to measures obtained from fitting the ex-Gaussian distributional model to the correct RTs. For both tasks, RTs were faster in blocks of trials with feedback than in blocks without feedback, but this difference was not significant. On the other hand, with respect to the distributional analyses, providing feedback served to significantly reduce the size of the tails of the RT distributions. Such results suggest that, for conditions in which accuracy is fairly high, the effect of corrective feedback might either be to reduce the tendency to double-check before responding or to decrease the amount of attentional lapsing.

  10. An account of cognitive flexibility and inflexibility for a complex dynamic task

    OpenAIRE

    De Obeso Orendain, Alberto; Wood, Sharon

    2012-01-01

    Problem solving involves adapting known problem solving methods and strategies to the task at hand (Schunn & Reder, 2001) and cognitive flexibility is considered to be “the human ability to adapt the cognitive processing strategies to face new and unexpected conditions of the environment” (Cañas et al., 2005, p. 95). This work presents an ACT-R 6.0 model of complex problem solving behavior for the dynamic microworld game FireChief (Omodei & Wearing, 1995) that models the performance of partic...

  11. Associations between physical function, dual-task performance and cognition in patients with mild Alzheimer's disease

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Sobol, Nanna Aue; Hoffmann, Kristine; Vogel, Asmus Mejling

    2016-01-01

    blinded multicenter RCT 'ADEX' (Alzheimer's disease: the effect of physical exercise) were used. Assessments included tests of physical function: 400-m walk test, 10-m walk test, Timed Up and Go test and 30-s chair stand test; dual-task performance, i.e., 10-m walk while counting backwards from 50...... or naming the months backwards; and cognition, i.e., Mini Mental State Examination, Symbol Digit Modalities Test, the Stroop Color and Word Test, and Lexical verbal fluency test. RESULTS: Results in the 30-s chair stand test correlated significantly with all tests of cognition (r = .208-.242) while...

  12. Effects of Healthy Aging and Mild Cognitive Impairment on a Real-Life Decision-Making Task.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pertl, Marie-Theres; Benke, Thomas; Zamarian, Laura; Delazer, Margarete

    2017-01-01

    In this study, we investigated the effects of age and of mild cognitive impairment (MCI) on decision making under risk by adopting a task representing real-life health-related situations and involving complex numerical information. Moreover, we assessed the relationship of real-life decision making to other cognitive functions such as number processing, executive functions, language, memory, and attention. For this reason, we compared the performance of 19 healthy, relatively younger adults with that of 18 healthy older adults and the performance of the 18 healthy older adults with that of 17 patients with MCI. Results indicated difficulties in real-life decision making for the healthy older adults compared with the healthy, relatively younger adults. Difficulties of patients with MCI relative to the healthy older adults arose in particular in difficult items requiring processing of frequencies and fractions. Significant effects of age and of MCI in processing frequencies were also evident in a ratio number comparison task. Decision-making performance of healthy participants and of the patient group correlated significantly with number processing. There was a further significant correlation with executive functions for the healthy participants and with reading comprehension for the patients. Our results suggest that healthy older individuals and patients with MCI make less advantageous decisions when the information is complex and high demands are put on executive functions and numerical abilities. Moreover, we show that executive functions and numerical abilities are not only essential in laboratory gambling tasks but also in more realistic and ecological decision situations within the health context.

  13. Age Moderates the Association of Aerobic Exercise with Initial Learning of an Online Task Requiring Cognitive Control.

    Science.gov (United States)

    O'Connor, Patrick J; Tomporowski, Phillip D; Dishman, Rodney K

    2015-11-01

    The aim of this study was to examine whether people differed in change in performance across the first five blocks of an online flanker task and whether those trajectories of change were associated with self-reported aerobic or resistance exercise frequency according to age. A total of 8752 men and women aged 13-89 completed a lifestyle survey and five 45-s games (each game was a block of ~46 trials) of an online flanker task. Accuracy of the congruent and incongruent flanker stimuli was analyzed using latent class and growth curve modeling adjusting for time between blocks, whether the blocks occurred on the same or different days, education, smoking, sleep, caffeinated coffee and tea use, and Lumosity training status ("free play" or part of a "daily brain workout"). Aerobic and resistance exercise were unrelated to first block accuracies. For the more cognitively demanding incongruent flanker stimuli, aerobic activity was positively related to the linear increase in accuracy [B=0.577%, 95% confidence interval (CI), 0.112 to 1.25 per day above the weekly mean of 2.8 days] and inversely related to the quadratic deceleration of accuracy gains (B=-0.619% CI, -1.117 to -0.121 per day). An interaction of aerobic activity with age indicated that active participants younger than age 45 had a larger linear increase and a smaller quadratic deceleration compared to other participants. Age moderates the association between self-reported aerobic, but not self-reported resistance, exercise and changes in cognitive control that occur with practice during incongruent presentations across five blocks of a 45-s online, flanker task.

  14. Mothers' and Fathers' Questions to Their Child in Mexican-Descent Families: Moderators of Cognitive Demand during Play.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tenenbaum, Harriet R.; Leaper, Campbell

    1997-01-01

    The cognitive demand in questions directed to Mexican-descent children by their mothers and fathers were analyzed for videotaped play situations involving gender-neutral, masculine-, or feminine-stereotyped toys. Mothers asked proportionately more conceptual questions than did fathers. Mothers' question asking was influenced by child gender,…

  15. Effects of an attention demanding task on dynamic stability during treadmill walking

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Troy Karen L

    2008-04-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background People exhibit increased difficulty balancing when they perform secondary attention-distracting tasks while walking. However, a previous study by Grabiner and Troy (J. Neuroengineering Rehabil., 2005 found that young healthy subjects performing a concurrent Stroop task while walking on a motorized treadmill exhibited decreased step width variability. However, measures of variability do not directly quantify how a system responds to perturbations. This study re-analyzed data from Grabiner and Troy 2005 to determine if performing the concurrent Stroop task directly affected the dynamic stability of walking in these same subjects. Methods Thirteen healthy volunteers walked on a motorized treadmill at their self-selected constant speed for 10 minutes both while performing the Stroop test and during undisturbed walking. This Stroop test consisted of projecting images of the name of one color, printed in text of a different color, onto a wall and asking subjects to verbally identify the color of the text. Three-dimensional motions of a marker attached to the base of the neck (C5/T1 were recorded. Marker velocities were calculated over 3 equal intervals of 200 sec each in each direction. Mean variability was calculated for each time series as the average standard deviation across all strides. Both "local" and "orbital" dynamic stability were quantified for each time series using previously established methods. These measures directly quantify how quickly small perturbations grow or decay, either continuously in real time (local or discretely from one cycle to the next (orbital. Differences between Stroop and Control trials were evaluated using a 2-factor repeated measures ANOVA. Results Mean variability of trunk movements was significantly reduced during the Stroop tests compared to normal walking. Conversely, local and orbital stability results were mixed: some measures showed slight increases, while others showed slight decreases

  16. Sources of Cognitive Inflexibility in Set-Shifting Tasks: Insights Into Developmental Theories From Adult Data.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dick, Anthony Steven

    2012-01-01

    Two experiments examined processes underlying cognitive inflexibility in set-shifting tasks typically used to assess the development of executive function in children. Adult participants performed a Flexible Item Selection Task (FIST) that requires shifting from categorizing by one dimension (e.g., color) to categorizing by a second orthogonal dimension (e.g., shape). The experiments showed performance of the FIST involves suppression of the representation of the ignored dimension; response times for selecting a target object in an immediately-following oddity task were slower when the oddity target was the previously-ignored stimulus of the FIST. However, proactive interference from the previously relevant stimulus dimension also impaired responding. The results are discussed with respect to two prominent theories of the source of difficulty for children and adults on dimensional shifting tasks: attentional inertia and negative priming . In contrast to prior work emphasizing one over the other process, the findings indicate that difficulty in the FIST, and by extension other set-shifting tasks, can be attributed to both the need to shift away from the previously attended representation ( attentional inertia ), and the need to shift to the previously ignored representation ( negative priming ). Results are discussed in relation to theoretical explanations for cognitive inflexibility in adults and children.

  17. In a demanding task, three-handed manipulation is preferred to two-handed manipulation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Abdi, Elahe; Burdet, Etienne; Bouri, Mohamed; Himidan, Sharifa; Bleuler, Hannes

    2016-02-25

    Equipped with a third hand under their direct control, surgeons may be able to perform certain surgical interventions alone; this would reduce the need for a human assistant and related coordination difficulties. However, does human performance improve with three hands compared to two hands? To evaluate this possibility, we carried out a behavioural study on the performance of naive adults catching objects with three virtual hands controlled by their two hands and right foot. The subjects could successfully control the virtual hands in a few trials. With this control strategy, the workspace of the hands was inversely correlated with the task velocity. The comparison of performance between the three and two hands control revealed no significant difference of success in catching falling objects and in average effort during the tasks. Subjects preferred the three handed control strategy, found it easier, with less physical and mental burden. Although the coordination of the foot with the natural hands increased trial after trial, about two minutes of practice was not sufficient to develop a sense of ownership towards the third arm.

  18. An electrophysiological study of task demands on concreteness effects: evidence for dual coding theory.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Welcome, Suzanne E; Paivio, Allan; McRae, Ken; Joanisse, Marc F

    2011-07-01

    We examined ERP responses during the generation of word associates or mental images in response to concrete and abstract concepts. Of interest were the predictions of dual coding theory (DCT), which proposes that processing lexical concepts depends on functionally independent but interconnected verbal and nonverbal systems. ERP responses were time-locked to either stimulus onset or response to compensate for potential latency differences across conditions. During word associate generation, but not mental imagery, concrete items elicited a greater N400 than abstract items. A concreteness effect emerged at a later time point during the mental imagery task. Data were also analyzed using time-frequency analysis that investigated synchronization of neuronal populations over time during processing. Concrete words elicited an enhanced late going desynchronization of theta-band power (723-938 ms post stimulus onset) during associate generation. During mental imagery, abstract items elicited greater delta-band power from 800 to 1,000 ms following stimulus onset, theta-band power from 350 to 205 ms before response, and alpha-band power from 900 to 800 ms before response. Overall, the findings support DCT in suggesting that lexical concepts are not amodal and that concreteness effects are modulated by tasks that focus participants on verbal versus nonverbal, imagery-based knowledge.

  19. Cognitive Control of Auditory Distraction: Impact of Task Difficulty, Foreknowledge, and Working Memory Capacity Supports Duplex-Mechanism Account

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hughes, Robert W.; Hurlstone, Mark J.; Marsh, John E.; Vachon, Francois; Jones, Dylan M.

    2013-01-01

    The influence of top-down cognitive control on 2 putatively distinct forms of distraction was investigated. Attentional capture by a task-irrelevant auditory deviation (e.g., a female-spoken token following a sequence of male-spoken tokens)--as indexed by its disruption of a visually presented recall task--was abolished when focal-task engagement…

  20. Sensory-specific balance training in older adults: effect on proprioceptive reintegration and cognitive demands.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Westlake, Kelly P; Culham, Elsie G

    2007-10-01

    Age-related changes in the ability to adjust to alterations in sensory information contribute to impaired postural stability. The purpose of this randomized controlled trial was to investigate the effect of sensory-specific balance training on proprioceptive reintegration. The subjects of this study were 36 older participants who were healthy. Participants were randomly assigned to a balance exercise group (n=17) or a falls prevention education group (n=19). The primary outcome measure was the center-of-pressure (COP) velocity change score. This score represented the difference between COP velocity over 45 seconds of quiet standing and each of six 5-second intervals following proprioceptive perturbation through vibration with or without a secondary cognitive task. Clinical outcome measures included the Fullerton Advanced Balance (FAB) Scale and the Activities-specific Balance Confidence (ABC) Scale. Assessments were conducted at baseline, postintervention, and at an 8-week follow-up. Following the exercise intervention, there was less destabilization within the first 5 seconds following vibration with or without a secondary task than there was at baseline or in the falls prevention education group. These training effects were not maintained at the 8-week follow-up. Postintervention improvements also were seen on the FAB Scale and were maintained at follow-up. No changes in ABC Scale scores were identified in the balance exercise group, but ABC Scale scores indicated reduced balance confidence in the falls prevention education group postintervention. The results of this study support short-term enhanced postural responses to proprioceptive reintegration following a sensory-specific balance exercise program.

  1. Experience-based attenuation of age-related differences in music cognition tasks.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Meinz, E J

    2000-06-01

    Pianists of a wide experience and age range were tested on measures of musical memory and musical perceptual speed to better understand the effects of experience on age-cognition relations. Experience-related attenuation might be in the form of an Age x Experience interaction or in the form of a "confounding" of age and experience such that positive age-experience relations offset negative age-cognition relations. It was predicted that the former, considered evidence for disuse interpretations of aging, would be likely to emerge in tasks with strong experience effects and strong age-related declines among inexperienced individuals. However, in no case were the interactions of age and experience on the memory or perceptual speed variables significant. There was, however, evidence that high levels of experience in the older participants partially attenuated the negative effects of age on the memory and perceptual speed tasks.

  2. The prefrontal cortex: insights from functional neuroimaging using cognitive activation tasks

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Goethals, Ingeborg; Van de Wiele, Christophe; Dierckx, Rudi [Division of Nuclear Medicine, Polikliniek 7, Ghent University Hospital, De Pintelaan 185, 9000, Ghent (Belgium); Audenaert, Kurt [Department of Psychiatry and Medical Psychology, Ghent University Hospital, Ghent (Belgium)

    2004-03-01

    This review presents neuroimaging studies which have explored the functional anatomy of a variety of cognitive processes represented by the prefrontal cortex (PFC). Overall, these studies have demonstrated that standard prefrontal neuroactivation tasks recruit a widely distributed network within the brain of which the PFC consistently forms a part. As such, these results are in keeping with the notion that executive functions within the PFC rely not only on anterior (mainly prefrontal) brain areas, but also on posterior (mainly parietal) brain regions. Moreover, intervention of similar brain regions in a large number of different executive tasks suggests that higher-level cognitive functions may best be understood in terms of an interactive network of specialised anterior as well as posterior brain regions. (orig.)

  3. The prefrontal cortex: insights from functional neuroimaging using cognitive activation tasks

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Goethals, Ingeborg; Van de Wiele, Christophe; Dierckx, Rudi; Audenaert, Kurt

    2004-01-01

    This review presents neuroimaging studies which have explored the functional anatomy of a variety of cognitive processes represented by the prefrontal cortex (PFC). Overall, these studies have demonstrated that standard prefrontal neuroactivation tasks recruit a widely distributed network within the brain of which the PFC consistently forms a part. As such, these results are in keeping with the notion that executive functions within the PFC rely not only on anterior (mainly prefrontal) brain areas, but also on posterior (mainly parietal) brain regions. Moreover, intervention of similar brain regions in a large number of different executive tasks suggests that higher-level cognitive functions may best be understood in terms of an interactive network of specialised anterior as well as posterior brain regions. (orig.)

  4. Cognitive pitfall! Videogame players are not immune to dual-task costs.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Donohue, Sarah E; James, Brittany; Eslick, Andrea N; Mitroff, Stephen R

    2012-07-01

    With modern technological advances, we often find ourselves dividing our attention between multiple tasks. While this may seem a productive way to live, our attentional capacity is limited, and this yields costs in one or more of the many tasks that we try to do. Some people believe that they are immune to the costs of multitasking and commonly engage in potentially dangerous behavior, such as driving while talking on the phone. But are some groups of individuals indeed immune to dual-task costs? This study examines whether avid action videogame players, who have been shown to have heightened attentional capacities, are particularly adept multitaskers. Participants completed three visually demanding experimental paradigms (a driving videogame, a multiple-object-tracking task, and a visual search), with and without answering unrelated questions via a speakerphone (i.e., with and without a dual-task component). All of the participants, videogame players and nonvideogame players alike, performed worse while engaging in the additional dual task for all three paradigms. This suggests that extensive videogame experience may not offer immunity from dual-task costs.

  5. Cognition of and Demand for Education and Teaching in Medical Statistics in China: A Systematic Review and Meta-Analysis

    Science.gov (United States)

    Li, Gaoming; Yi, Dali; Wu, Xiaojiao; Liu, Xiaoyu; Zhang, Yanqi; Liu, Ling; Yi, Dong

    2015-01-01

    Background Although a substantial number of studies focus on the teaching and application of medical statistics in China, few studies comprehensively evaluate the recognition of and demand for medical statistics. In addition, the results of these various studies differ and are insufficiently comprehensive and systematic. Objectives This investigation aimed to evaluate the general cognition of and demand for medical statistics by undergraduates, graduates, and medical staff in China. Methods We performed a comprehensive database search related to the cognition of and demand for medical statistics from January 2007 to July 2014 and conducted a meta-analysis of non-controlled studies with sub-group analysis for undergraduates, graduates, and medical staff. Results There are substantial differences with respect to the cognition of theory in medical statistics among undergraduates (73.5%), graduates (60.7%), and medical staff (39.6%). The demand for theory in medical statistics is high among graduates (94.6%), undergraduates (86.1%), and medical staff (88.3%). Regarding specific statistical methods, the cognition of basic statistical methods is higher than of advanced statistical methods. The demand for certain advanced statistical methods, including (but not limited to) multiple analysis of variance (ANOVA), multiple linear regression, and logistic regression, is higher than that for basic statistical methods. The use rates of the Statistical Package for the Social Sciences (SPSS) software and statistical analysis software (SAS) are only 55% and 15%, respectively. Conclusion The overall statistical competence of undergraduates, graduates, and medical staff is insufficient, and their ability to practically apply their statistical knowledge is limited, which constitutes an unsatisfactory state of affairs for medical statistics education. Because the demand for skills in this area is increasing, the need to reform medical statistics education in China has become urgent

  6. Children's attention to task-relevant information accounts for relations between language and spatial cognition.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Miller, Hilary E; Simmering, Vanessa R

    2018-08-01

    Children's spatial language reliably predicts their spatial skills, but the nature of this relation is a source of debate. This investigation examined whether the mechanisms accounting for such relations are specific to language use or reflect a domain-general mechanism of selective attention. Experiment 1 examined whether 4-year-olds' spatial skills were predicted by their selective attention or their adaptive language use. Children completed (a) an attention task assessing attention to task-relevant color, size, and location cues; (b) a description task assessing adaptive language use to describe scenes varying in color, size, and location; and (c) three spatial tasks. There was correspondence between the cue types that children attended to and produced across description and attention tasks. Adaptive language use was predicted by both children's attention and task-related language production, suggesting that selective attention underlies skills in using language adaptively. After controlling for age, gender, receptive vocabulary, and adaptive language use, spatial skills were predicted by children's selective attention. The attention score predicted variance in spatial performance previously accounted for by adaptive language use. Experiment 2 followed up on the attention task (Experiment 2a) and description task (Experiment 2b) from Experiment 1 to assess whether performance in the tasks related to selective attention or task-specific demands. Performance in Experiments 2a and 2b paralleled that in Experiment 1, suggesting that the effects in Experiment 1 reflected children's selective attention skills. These findings show that selective attention is a central factor supporting spatial skill development that could account for many effects previously attributed to children's language use. Copyright © 2018 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  7. Theta and Alpha Alterations in Amnestic Mild Cognitive Impairment in Semantic Go/NoGo Tasks

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Lydia T. Nguyen

    2017-05-01

    Full Text Available Growing evidence suggests that cognitive control processes are impaired in amnestic mild cognitive impairment (aMCI; however the nature of these alterations needs further examination. The current study examined differences in electroencephalographic theta and alpha power related to cognitive control processes involving response execution and response inhibition in 22 individuals with aMCI and 22 age-, sex-, and education-matched cognitively normal controls. Two Go/NoGo tasks involving semantic categorization were used. In the basic categorization task, Go/NoGo responses were made based on exemplars of a single car (Go and a single dog (NoGo. In the superordinate categorization task, responses were made based on multiple exemplars of objects (Go and animals (NoGo. Behavioral data showed that the aMCI group had more false alarms during the NoGo trials compared to controls. The EEG data revealed between group differences related to response type in theta (4–7 Hz and low-frequency alpha (8–10 Hz power. In particular, the aMCI group differed from controls in theta power during the NoGo trials at frontal and parietal electrodes, and in low-frequency alpha power during Go trials at parietal electrodes. These results suggest that alterations in theta power converge with behavioral deterioration in response inhibition, whereas alterations in low-frequency alpha power appear to precede behavioral changes in response execution. Both behavioral and electrophysiological correlates combined provide a more comprehensive characterization of cognitive control deficits in aMCI.

  8. Changes in Predictive Task Switching with Age and with Cognitive Load.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Levy-Tzedek, Shelly

    2017-01-01

    Predictive control of movement is more efficient than feedback-based control, and is an important skill in everyday life. We tested whether the ability to predictively control movements of the upper arm is affected by age and by cognitive load. A total of 63 participants were tested in two experiments. In both experiments participants were seated, and controlled a cursor on a computer screen by flexing and extending their dominant arm. In Experiment 1, 20 young adults and 20 older adults were asked to continuously change the frequency of their horizontal arm movements, with the goal of inducing an abrupt switch between discrete movements (at low frequencies) and rhythmic movements (at high frequencies). We tested whether that change was performed based on a feed-forward (predictive) or on a feedback (reactive) control. In Experiment 2, 23 young adults performed the same task, while being exposed to a cognitive load half of the time via a serial subtraction task. We found that both aging and cognitive load diminished, on average, the ability of participants to predictively control their movements. Five older adults and one young adult under a cognitive load were not able to perform the switch between rhythmic and discrete movement (or vice versa). In Experiment 1, 40% of the older participants were able to predictively control their movements, compared with 70% in the young group. In Experiment 2, 48% of the participants were able to predictively control their movements with a cognitively loading task, compared with 70% in the no-load condition. The ability to predictively change a motor plan in anticipation of upcoming changes may be an important component in performing everyday functions, such as safe driving and avoiding falls.

  9. Mild cognitive impairment: loss of linguistic task-induced changes in motor cortex excitability.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bracco, L; Giovannelli, F; Bessi, V; Borgheresi, A; Di Tullio, A; Sorbi, S; Zaccara, G; Cincotta, M

    2009-03-10

    In amnestic mild cognitive impairment (aMCI), functional neuronal connectivity may be altered, as suggested by quantitative EEG and neuroimaging data. In young healthy humans, the execution of linguistic tasks modifies the excitability of the hand area of the dominant primary motor cortex (M1(hand)), as tested by transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS). We used TMS to investigate functional connectivity between language-related cortical areas and M1(hand) in aMCI. Ten elderly women with aMCI and 10 age-matched women were recruited. All participants were right handed and underwent a neuropsychological evaluation. In the first TMS experiment, participants performed three different tasks: reading aloud, viewing of non-letter strings (baseline), and nonverbal oral movements. The second experiment included the baseline condition and three visual searching/matching tasks using letters, geometric shapes, or digits as target stimuli. In controls, motor evoked potentials (MEP) elicited by suprathreshold TMS of the left M1(hand) were significantly larger during reading aloud (170% baseline) than during nonverbal oral movements, whereas no difference was seen for right M1(hand) stimulation. Similarly, MEP elicited by left M1(hand) stimulation during letter and shape searching/matching tasks were significantly larger compared to digit task. In contrast, linguistic task performance did not produce any significant MEP modulation in patients with aMCI, although neuropsychological evaluation showed normal language abilities. Findings suggest that functional connectivity between the language-related brain regions and the dominant M1(hand) may be altered in amnestic mild cognitive impairment. Follow-up studies will reveal whether transcranial magnetic stimulation application during linguistic tasks may contribute to characterize the risk of conversion to Alzheimer disease.

  10. Electroencephalogram complexity analysis in children with attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder during a visual cognitive task.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zarafshan, Hadi; Khaleghi, Ali; Mohammadi, Mohammad Reza; Moeini, Mahdi; Malmir, Nastaran

    2016-01-01

    The aim of this study was to investigate electroencephalogram (EEG) dynamics using complexity analysis in children with attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) compared with healthy control children when performing a cognitive task. Thirty 7-12-year-old children meeting Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders-Fifth Edition (DSM-5) criteria for ADHD and 30 healthy control children underwent an EEG evaluation during a cognitive task, and Lempel-Ziv complexity (LZC) values were computed. There were no significant differences between ADHD and control groups on age and gender. The mean LZC of the ADHD children was significantly larger than healthy children over the right anterior and right posterior regions during the cognitive performance. In the ADHD group, complexity of the right hemisphere was higher than that of the left hemisphere, but the complexity of the left hemisphere was higher than that of the right hemisphere in the normal group. Although fronto-striatal dysfunction is considered conclusive evidence for the pathophysiology of ADHD, our arithmetic mental task has provided evidence of structural and functional changes in the posterior regions and probably cerebellum in ADHD.

  11. Pupillary response to complex interdependent tasks: A cognitive-load theory perspective.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mitra, Ritayan; McNeal, Karen S; Bondell, Howard D

    2017-10-01

    Pupil dilation is known to indicate cognitive load. In this study, we looked at the average pupillary responses of a cohort of 29 undergraduate students during graphical problem solving. Three questions were asked, based on the same graphical input. The questions were interdependent and comprised multiple steps. We propose a novel way of analyzing pupillometry data for such tasks on the basis of eye fixations, a commonly used eyetracking parameter. We found that pupil diameter increased during the solution process. However, pupil diameter did not always reflect the expected cognitive load. This result was studied within a cognitive-load theory model. Higher-performing students showed evidence of germane load and schema creation, indicating use of the interdependent nature of the tasks to inform their problem-solving process. However, lower-performing students did not recognize the interdependent nature of the tasks and solved each problem independently, which was expressed in a markedly different pupillary response pattern. We discuss the import of our findings for instructional design.

  12. Emotions in cognitive conflicts are not aversive but are task specific.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schacht, Annekathrin; Dimigen, Olaf; Sommer, Werner

    2010-09-01

    It has been suggested that cognitive conflicts require effortful processing and, therefore, are aversive (Botvinick, 2007). In the present study, we compared conflicts emerging from the inhibition of a predominant response tendency in a go/no-go task with those between incompatible response activations in a Simon task in a within-subjects design, using the same type of stimuli. Whereas no-go trials elicited reduced skin conductance and pupillometric responses, but prolonged corrugator muscle activity, as compared with go trials, incompatible and compatible Simon trials were indistinguishable with respect to these parameters. Furthermore, the conflict-sensitive N2 components of the event-related brain potential were similar in amplitude, but showed significantly different scalp distributions, indicating dissociable neural generator systems. The present findings suggest the involvement of different emotional and cognitive processes in both types of cognitive conflicts-none being aversive, however. In addition, the N2 findings call into question claims of common monitoring systems for all kinds of cognitive conflicts.

  13. Causal reasoning and models of cognitive tasks for naval nuclear power plant operators

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Salazar-Ferrer, P.

    1995-06-01

    In complex industrial process control, causal reasoning appears as a major component in operators' cognitive tasks. It is tightly linked to diagnosis, prediction of normal and failure states, and explanation. This work provides a detailed review of literature in causal reasoning. A synthesis is proposed as a model of causal reasoning in process control. This model integrates distinct approaches in Cognitive Science: especially qualitative physics, Bayesian networks, knowledge-based systems, and cognitive psychology. Our model defines a framework for the analysis of causal human errors in simulated naval nuclear power plant fault management. Through the methodological framework of critical incident analysis we define a classification of errors and difficulties linked to causal reasoning. This classification is based on shallow characteristics of causal reasoning. As an origin of these errors, more elementary component activities in causal reasoning are identified. The applications cover the field of functional specification for man-machine interfaces, operators support systems design as well as nuclear safety. In addition of this study, we integrate the model of causal reasoning in a model of cognitive task in process control. (authors). 106 refs., 49 figs., 8 tabs

  14. Gait stability and variability measures show effects of impaired cognition and dual tasking in frail people

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    de Vries Oscar J

    2011-01-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Falls in frail elderly are a common problem with a rising incidence. Gait and postural instability are major risk factors for falling, particularly in geriatric patients. As walking requires attention, cognitive impairments are likely to contribute to an increased fall risk. An objective quantification of gait and balance ability is required to identify persons with a high tendency to fall. Recent studies have shown that stride variability is increased in elderly and under dual task condition and might be more sensitive to detect fall risk than walking speed. In the present study we complemented stride related measures with measures that quantify trunk movement patterns as indicators of dynamic balance ability during walking. The aim of the study was to quantify the effect of impaired cognition and dual tasking on gait variability and stability in geriatric patients. Methods Thirteen elderly with dementia (mean age: 82.6 ± 4.3 years and thirteen without dementia (79.4 ± 5.55 recruited from a geriatric day clinic, walked at self-selected speed with and without performing a verbal dual task. The Mini Mental State Examination and the Seven Minute Screen were administered. Trunk accelerations were measured with an accelerometer. In addition to walking speed, mean, and variability of stride times, gait stability was quantified using stochastic dynamical measures, namely regularity (sample entropy, long range correlations and local stability exponents of trunk accelerations. Results Dual tasking significantly (p Conclusions The observed trunk adaptations were a consistent instability factor. These results support the concept that changes in cognitive functions contribute to changes in the variability and stability of the gait pattern. Walking under dual task conditions and quantifying gait using dynamical parameters can improve detecting walking disorders and might help to identify those elderly who are able to adapt walking

  15. Sleep restriction and cognitive load affect performance on a simulated marksmanship task.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Smith, Carl D; Cooper, Adam D; Merullo, Donna J; Cohen, Bruce S; Heaton, Kristin J; Claro, Pedro J; Smith, Tracey

    2017-11-24

    Sleep restriction degrades cognitive and motor performance, which can adversely impact job performance and increase the risk of accidents. Military personnel are prone to operating under sleep restriction, and previous work suggests that military marksmanship may be negatively affected under such conditions. Results of these studies, however, are mixed and have often incorporated additional stressors (e.g. energy restriction) beyond sleep restriction. Moreover, few studies have investigated how the degree of difficulty of a marksmanship task impacts performance following sleep restriction. The purpose of the current experiment was to study the effects of sleep restriction on marksmanship while minimizing the potential influence of other forms of stress. A friend-foe discrimination challenge with greater or lesser degrees of complexity (high versus low load) was used as the primary marksmanship task. Active duty Soldiers were recruited, and allowed 2 h of sleep every 24 h over a 72-h testing period. Marksmanship tasks, cognitive assessment metrics and the NASA-Task Load Index were administered daily. Results indicated that reaction times to shoot foe targets and signal friendly targets slowed over time. In addition, the ability to correctly discriminate between friend and foe targets significantly decreased in the high-cognitive-load condition over time despite shot accuracy remaining stable. The NASA-Task Load Index revealed that, although marksmanship performance degraded, participants believed their performance did not change over time. These results further characterize the consequences of sleep restriction on marksmanship performance and the perception of performance, and reinforce the importance of adequate sleep among service members when feasible. Published 2017. This article is a U.S. Government work and is in the public domain in the USA.

  16. A cognitive stressor for event-related potential studies: the Portland arithmetic stress task.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Atchley, Rachel; Ellingson, Roger; Klee, Daniel; Memmott, Tabatha; Oken, Barry

    2017-05-01

    In this experiment, we developed and evaluated the Portland Arithmetic Stress Task (PAST) as a cognitive stressor to evaluate acute and sustained stress reactivity for event-related potential (ERP) studies. The PAST is a titrated arithmetic task adapted from the Montreal Imaging Stress Task (MIST), with added experimental control over presentation parameters, improved and synchronized acoustic feedback and generation of timing markers needed for physiological analyzes of real-time brain activity. Thirty-one older adults (M = 60 years) completed the PAST. EEG was recorded to assess feedback-related negativity (FRN) and the magnitude of the stress response through autonomic nervous system activity and salivary cortisol. Physiological measures other than EEG included heart rate, respiration rate, heart rate variability, blood pressure and salivary cortisol. These measures were collected at several time points throughout the task. Feedback-related negativity evoked-potential responses were elicited and they significantly differed depending on whether positive or negative feedback was received. The PAST also increased systolic blood pressure, heart rate variability and respiration rates compared to a control condition attentional task. These preliminary results suggest that the PAST is an effective cognitive stressor. Successful measurement of the feedback-related negativity suggests that the PAST is conducive to EEG and time-sensitive ERP experiments. Moreover, the physiological findings support the PAST as a potent method for inducing stress in older adult participants. Further research is needed to confirm these results, but the PAST shows promise as a tool for cognitive stress induction for time-locked event-related potential experiments.

  17. Human cognitive task distribution model for maintenance support system of a nuclear power plant

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Park, Young Ho

    2007-02-15

    In human factors research, more attention has been devoted to the operation of nuclear power plants (NPPs) than to their maintenance. However, human error related to maintenance is 45% among the total human errors from 1990 to 2005 in Korean nuclear power plants. Therefore, it is necessary to study human factors in the maintenance of an NPP. There is a current trend toward introducing digital technology into both safety and non-safety systems in NPPs. A variety of information about plant conditions can be used digitally. In the future, maintenance support systems will be developed based on an information-oriented NPP. In this context, it is necessary to study the cognitive tasks of the personnel involved in maintenance and the interaction between the personnel and maintenance support systems. The fundamental purpose of this work is how to distribute the cognitive tasks of the personnel involved in the maintenance in order to develop a maintenance support system that considers human factors. The second purpose is to find the causes of errors due to engineers or maintainers and propose system functions that are countermeasures to reduce these errors. In this paper, a cognitive task distribution model of the personnel involved in maintenance is proposed using Rasmussen's decision making model. First, the personnel were divided into three groups: the operators (inspectors), engineers, and maintainers. Second, human cognitive tasks related to maintenance were distributed based on these groups. The operators' cognitive tasks are detection and observation; the engineers' cognitive tasks are identification, evaluation, target state, select target, and procedure: and the maintainers' cognitive task is execution. The case study is an analysis of failure reports related to human error in maintenance over a period of 15years. By using error classification based on the information processing approach, the human errors involved in maintenance were classified

  18. Human cognitive task distribution model for maintenance support system of a nuclear power plant

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Park, Young Ho

    2007-02-01

    In human factors research, more attention has been devoted to the operation of nuclear power plants (NPPs) than to their maintenance. However, human error related to maintenance is 45% among the total human errors from 1990 to 2005 in Korean nuclear power plants. Therefore, it is necessary to study human factors in the maintenance of an NPP. There is a current trend toward introducing digital technology into both safety and non-safety systems in NPPs. A variety of information about plant conditions can be used digitally. In the future, maintenance support systems will be developed based on an information-oriented NPP. In this context, it is necessary to study the cognitive tasks of the personnel involved in maintenance and the interaction between the personnel and maintenance support systems. The fundamental purpose of this work is how to distribute the cognitive tasks of the personnel involved in the maintenance in order to develop a maintenance support system that considers human factors. The second purpose is to find the causes of errors due to engineers or maintainers and propose system functions that are countermeasures to reduce these errors. In this paper, a cognitive task distribution model of the personnel involved in maintenance is proposed using Rasmussen's decision making model. First, the personnel were divided into three groups: the operators (inspectors), engineers, and maintainers. Second, human cognitive tasks related to maintenance were distributed based on these groups. The operators' cognitive tasks are detection and observation; the engineers' cognitive tasks are identification, evaluation, target state, select target, and procedure: and the maintainers' cognitive task is execution. The case study is an analysis of failure reports related to human error in maintenance over a period of 15years. By using error classification based on the information processing approach, the human errors involved in maintenance were classified

  19. Basic emotion processing and the adolescent brain: Task demands, analytic approaches, and trajectories of changes

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Larissa B. Del Piero

    2016-06-01

    Full Text Available Early neuroimaging studies suggested that adolescents show initial development in brain regions linked with emotional reactivity, but slower development in brain structures linked with emotion regulation. However, the increased sophistication of adolescent brain research has made this picture more complex. This review examines functional neuroimaging studies that test for differences in basic emotion processing (reactivity and regulation between adolescents and either children or adults. We delineated different emotional processing demands across the experimental paradigms in the reviewed studies to synthesize the diverse results. The methods for assessing change (i.e., analytical approach and cohort characteristics (e.g., age range were also explored as potential factors influencing study results. Few unifying dimensions were found to successfully distill the results of the reviewed studies. However, this review highlights the potential impact of subtle methodological and analytic differences between studies, need for standardized and theory-driven experimental paradigms, and necessity of analytic approaches that are can adequately test the trajectories of developmental change that have recently been proposed. Recommendations for future research highlight connectivity analyses and non-linear developmental trajectories, which appear to be promising approaches for measuring change across adolescence. Recommendations are made for evaluating gender and biological markers of development beyond chronological age.

  20. Dual-task and electrophysiological markers of executive cognitive processing in older adult gait and fall-risk.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Elizabeth A Walshe

    2015-04-01

    Full Text Available The role of cognition is becoming increasingly central to our understanding of the complexity of walking gait. Here, we report two experiments which investigated the cognitive and neural processes underlying older adult gait and fall-risk. Experiment 1 employed a dual-task paradigm in young and older adults, to assess the relative effects of higher-level executive function tasks (n-Back, Serial Subtraction and visuo-spatial Clock task in comparison to non-executive distracter tasks (motor response task and alphabet recitation on gait. All dual-tasks elicited changes in gait for both young and older adults, relative to baseline walking. Significantly greater dual-task costs were observed for the executive tasks in the older adult group, as hypothesized. Experiment 2 compared normal walking gait, seated cognitive performances and concurrent event-related brain potentials (ERPs in healthy young and older adults, to older adult fallers. No significant differences in cognitive performances were found between fallers and non-fallers. However, a clear P3a peak was evident on the Stroop task for older non-fallers, which was notably absent in older fallers. This may be indicative of the presence of some cortically-based compensatory process in this group, contributing to their reduced risk of falling. We argue that executive functions play a prominent role in walking and gait, but the role of higher cognition as a predictor of fall-risk needs further investigation.

  1. Amygdala responses to unpleasant pictures are influenced by task demands and positive affect trait.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sanchez, Tiago A; Mocaiber, Izabela; Erthal, Fatima S; Joffily, Mateus; Volchan, Eliane; Pereira, Mirtes G; de Araujo, Draulio B; Oliveira, Leticia

    2015-01-01

    The role of attention in emotional processing is still the subject of debate. Recent studies have found that high positive affect in approach motivation narrows attention. Furthermore, the positive affect trait has been suggested as an important component for determining human variability in threat reactivity. We employed functional magnetic resonance imaging to investigate whether different states of attention control would modulate amygdala responses to highly unpleasant pictures relative to neutral and whether this modulation would be influenced by the positive affect trait. Participants (n = 22, 12 male) were scanned while viewing neutral (people) or unpleasant pictures (mutilated bodies) flanked by two peripheral bars. They were instructed to (a) judge the picture content as unpleasant or neutral or (b) to judge the difference in orientation between the bars in an easy condition (0 or 90(∘) orientation difference) or (c) in a hard condition (0 or 6(∘) orientation difference). Whole brain analysis revealed a task main effect of brain areas related to the experimental manipulation of attentional control, including the amygdala, dorsolateral prefrontal cortex, and posterior parietal cortex. Region of interest analysis showed an inverse correlation (r = -0.51, p pictures. In conclusion, the current study suggests that positive affect modulates attention effect on unpleasant pictures, therefore attenuating emotional responses.

  2. Amygdala responses to unpleasant pictures are influenced by task demands and positive affect trait

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Tiago Arruda Sanchez

    2015-03-01

    Full Text Available The role of attention in emotional processing is still the subject of debate. Recent studies have found that high positive affect in approach motivation narrows attention. Furthermore, the positive affect trait has been suggested as an important component for determining human variability in threat reactivity. We employed fMRI to investigate whether different states of attention control would modulate amygdala responses to highly unpleasant pictures relative to neutral and whether this modulation would be influenced by the positive affect trait. Participants (n=22, 12 male were scanned while viewing neutral (people or unpleasant pictures (mutilated bodies flanked by two peripheral bars. They were instructed to (a judge the picture content as unpleasant or neutral or (b to judge the difference in orientation between the bars in an easy condition (0º or 90º orientation difference or (c in a hard condition (0º or 6º orientation difference. Whole brain analysis revealed a task main effect of brain areas related to the experimental manipulation of attentional control, including the amygdala, dorsolateral prefrontal cortex and posterior parietal cortex. ROI analysis showed an inverse correlation (r = -0.51, p < 0.01 between left amygdala activation and positive affect level when participants viewed unpleasant stimuli and judged bar orientation in the easy condition. This result suggests that subjects with high positive affect exhibit lower amygdala reactivity to distracting unpleasant pictures. In conclusion, the current study suggests that positive affect modulates attention effect on unpleasant pictures, therefore attenuating emotional responses.

  3. The impact of social threat cues on a card sorting task with attentional-shifting demands.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mohlman, Jan; DeVito, Alyssa

    2017-12-01

    The current study investigated social anxiety and attentional control using two versions of a task designed to tap intentional shifting of attention and set switching: the standard Wisconsin Card Sorting Test (WCST; Heaton, 1981) and a modified version that included emotionally salient pictorial stimuli, the Emotional Faces Card Sorting Test (EFCST). A Group (lower-, higher-SPS) by Condition (WCST, EFCST) by Sorting Rule (color, form, number) interaction was expected in which the higher-SPS EFCST group would have worse overall performance and make more perseverative errors than the other groups. No differences were predicted on nonperseverative errors, which are typically caused by brief attentional lapses. Participants were 80 undergraduate students who scored in the upper and lower quartile of the distribution on the Social Phobia Scale (SPS; Mattick & Clarke, 1998) were randomly assigned to complete either the WCST or EFCST. On the WCST, the higher-SPS group showed performance similar to that of the lower-SPS group. On the EFCST, the higher-SPS group evidenced more perseverative errors in the condition that depicted angry faces. Interpretations based on a non-clinical sample limit the generalisability of the conclusions. Reliability of this new measure has yet to be established. Successful completion of the WCST requires more than set-shifting processes. These results suggest that the higher-SPS group in the EFCST condition might have had trouble disengaging attention from threat-related cues, despite ongoing corrective feedback. Copyright © 2017. Published by Elsevier Ltd.

  4. Distributed Schemes for Crowdsourcing-Based Sensing Task Assignment in Cognitive Radio Networks

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Linbo Zhai

    2017-01-01

    Full Text Available Spectrum sensing is an important issue in cognitive radio networks. The unlicensed users can access the licensed wireless spectrum only when the licensed wireless spectrum is sensed to be idle. Since mobile terminals such as smartphones and tablets are popular among people, spectrum sensing can be assigned to these mobile intelligent terminals, which is called crowdsourcing method. Based on the crowdsourcing method, this paper studies the distributed scheme to assign spectrum sensing task to mobile terminals such as smartphones and tablets. Considering the fact that mobile terminals’ positions may influence the sensing results, a precise sensing effect function is designed for the crowdsourcing-based sensing task assignment. We aim to maximize the sensing effect function and cast this optimization problem to address crowdsensing task assignment in cognitive radio networks. This problem is difficult to be solved because the complexity of this problem increases exponentially with the growth in mobile terminals. To assign crowdsensing task, we propose four distributed algorithms with different transition probabilities and use a Markov chain to analyze the approximation gap of our proposed schemes. Simulation results evaluate the average performance of our proposed algorithms and validate the algorithm’s convergence.

  5. Evaluation of the Display of Cognitive State Feedback to Drive Adaptive Task Sharing.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dorneich, Michael C; Passinger, Břetislav; Hamblin, Christopher; Keinrath, Claudia; Vašek, Jiři; Whitlow, Stephen D; Beekhuyzen, Martijn

    2017-01-01

    This paper presents an adaptive system intended to address workload imbalances between pilots in future flight decks. Team performance can be maximized when task demands are balanced within crew capabilities and resources. Good communication skills enable teams to adapt to changes in workload, and include the balancing of workload between team members This work addresses human factors priorities in the aviation domain with the goal to develop concepts that balance operator workload, support future operator roles and responsibilities, and support new task requirements, while allowing operators to focus on the most safety critical tasks. A traditional closed-loop adaptive system includes the decision logic to turn automated adaptations on and off. This work takes a novel approach of replacing the decision logic, normally performed by the automation, with human decisions. The Crew Workload Manager (CWLM) was developed to objectively display the workload between pilots and recommend task sharing; it is then the pilots who "close the loop" by deciding how to best mitigate unbalanced workload. The workload was manipulated by the Shared Aviation Task Battery (SAT-B), which was developed to provide opportunities for pilots to mitigate imbalances in workload between crew members. Participants were put in situations of high and low workload (i.e., workload was manipulated as opposed to being measured), the workload was then displayed to pilots, and pilots were allowed to decide how to mitigate the situation. An evaluation was performed that utilized the SAT-B to manipulate workload and create workload imbalances. Overall, the CWLM reduced the time spent in unbalanced workload and improved the crew coordination in task sharing while not negatively impacting concurrent task performance. Balancing workload has the potential to improve crew resource management and task performance over time, and reduce errors and fatigue. Paired with a real-time workload measurement system, the

  6. Cognitive structure, flexibility, and plasticity in human multitasking-An integrative review of dual-task and task-switching research.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Koch, Iring; Poljac, Edita; Müller, Hermann; Kiesel, Andrea

    2018-06-01

    Numerous studies showed decreased performance in situations that require multiple tasks or actions relative to appropriate control conditions. Because humans often engage in such multitasking activities, it is important to understand how multitasking affects performance. In the present article, we argue that research on dual-task interference and sequential task switching has proceeded largely separately using different experimental paradigms and methodology. In our article we aim at organizing this complex set of research in terms of three complementary research perspectives on human multitasking. One perspective refers to structural accounts in terms of cognitive bottlenecks (i.e., critical processing stages). A second perspective refers to cognitive flexibility in terms of the underlying cognitive control processes. A third perspective emphasizes cognitive plasticity in terms of the influence of practice on human multitasking abilities. With our review article we aimed at highlighting the value of an integrative position that goes beyond isolated consideration of a single theoretical research perspective and that broadens the focus from single experimental paradigms (dual task and task switching) to favor instead a view that emphasizes the fundamental similarity of the underlying cognitive mechanisms across multitasking paradigms. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2018 APA, all rights reserved).

  7. Academic Task Demand in the 21st-Century, High-Stakes-Accountability School: Mapping the Journey from Poor [To Fair to Good to Great] to Excellent?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Szczesiul, Stacy Agee; Nehring, James; Carey, Theodore

    2015-01-01

    Drawing on theoretical and empirical research concerning the relationship between academic work and student learning, this article explores the following questions: What skills are required to execute the academic tasks teachers assign on a daily basis? How do teachers and administrators interpret the task demands represented in instructional…

  8. A Randomized Controlled ERP Study on the Effects of Multi-Domain Cognitive Training and Task Difficulty on Task Switching Performance in Older Adults

    Science.gov (United States)

    Küper, Kristina; Gajewski, Patrick D.; Frieg, Claudia; Falkenstein, Michael

    2017-01-01

    Executive functions are subject to a marked age-related decline, but have been shown to benefit from cognitive training interventions. As of yet, it is, however, still relatively unclear which neural mechanism can mediate training-related performance gains. In the present electrophysiological study, we examined the effects of multi-domain cognitive training on performance in an untrained cue-based task switch paradigm featuring Stroop color words: participants either had to indicate the word meaning of Stroop stimuli (word task) or perform the more difficult task of color naming (color task). One-hundred and three older adults (>65 years old) were randomly assigned to a training group receiving a 4-month multi-domain cognitive training, a passive no-contact control group or an active (social) control group receiving a 4-month relaxation training. For all groups, we recorded performance and EEG measures before and after the intervention. For the cognitive training group, but not for the two control groups, we observed an increase in response accuracy at posttest, irrespective of task and trial type. No training-related effects on reaction times were found. Cognitive training was also associated with an overall increase in N2 amplitude and a decrease of P2 latency on single trials. Training-related performance gains were thus likely mediated by an enhancement of response selection and improved access to relevant stimulus-response mappings. Additionally, cognitive training was associated with an amplitude decrease in the time window of the target-locked P3 at fronto-central electrodes. An increase in the switch positivity during advance task preparation emerged after both cognitive and relaxation training. Training-related behavioral and event-related potential (ERP) effects were not modulated by task difficulty. The data suggest that cognitive training increased slow negative potentials during target processing which enhanced the N2 and reduced a subsequent P3-like

  9. Identifying interactive effects of task demands in lifting on estimates of in vivo low back joint loads.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gooyers, Chad E; Beach, Tyson A C; Frost, David M; Howarth, Samuel J; Callaghan, Jack P

    2018-02-01

    This investigation examined interactions between the magnitude of external load, movement speed and (a)symmetry of load placement on estimates of in vivo joint loading in the lumbar spine during simulated occupational lifting. Thirty-two participants with manual materials handling experience were included in the study. Three-dimensional motion data, ground reaction forces, and activation of six bilateral trunk muscle groups were captured while participants performed lifts with two loads at two movement speeds and using two load locations. L4-L5 joint compression and shear force-time histories were estimated using an EMG-assisted musculoskeletal model of the lumbar spine. Results from this investigation provide strong evidence that known mechanical low back injury risk factors should not be viewed in isolation. Rather, injury prevention efforts need to consider the complex interactions that exist between external task demands and their combined influence on internal joint loading. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  10. Strategies of modeling the cognitive tasks of human operators for accident scenarios in nuclear power plant control rooms

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Cheon, Se Woo; Sur, Sang Moon; Lee, Yong Hee; Lee, Jeong Wun

    1993-01-01

    This paper presents the development strategies of cognitive task network modeling for accident scenarios in nuclear power plant control rooms. Task network modeling is used to provide useful predictions of operator's performance times and error rates, based upon plant procedures and/or control room changes. Two accident scenarios, small-break loss of coolant accident (LOCA) and steam generator tube rupture (SGTR), are selected for task simulation. To obtain the input data for the model, task elements are extracted by the task analysis of emergency operating procedures. The input data include task performance time, communication ink, panel location, component operating mode, and data for performance shaping factors (PSFs). Operator's verbs are categorized according to the elements of cognitive behavior. The simulation of the task network for the small-break LOCA scenario is presented in this paper. (Author)

  11. Deficits in inhibitory control and conflict resolution on cognitive and motor tasks in Parkinson's disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Obeso, Ignacio; Wilkinson, Leonora; Casabona, Enrique; Bringas, Maria Luisa; Álvarez, Mario; Álvarez, Lázaro; Pavón, Nancy; Rodríguez-Oroz, Maria-Cruz; Macías, Raúl; Obeso, Jose A; Jahanshahi, Marjan

    2011-07-01

    Recent imaging studies in healthy controls with a conditional stop signal reaction time (RT) task have implicated the subthalamic nucleus (STN) in response inhibition and the pre-supplementary motor area (pre-SMA) in conflict resolution. Parkinson's disease (PD) is characterized by striatal dopamine deficiency and overactivity of the STN and underactivation of the pre-SMA during movement. We used the conditional stop signal RT task to investigate whether PD produced similar or dissociable effects on response initiation, response inhibition and response initiation under conflict. In addition, we also examined inhibition of prepotent responses on three cognitive tasks: the Stroop, random number generation and Hayling sentence completion. PD patients were impaired on the conditional stop signal reaction time task, with response initiation both in situations with or without conflict and response inhibition all being significantly delayed, and had significantly greater difficulty in suppressing prepotent or habitual responses on the Stroop, Hayling and random number generation tasks relative to controls. These results demonstrate the existence of a generalized inhibitory deficit in PD, which suggest that PD is a disorder of inhibition as well as activation and that in situations of conflict, executive control over responses is compromised.

  12. Emotion recognition and cognitive empathy deficits in adolescent offenders revealed by context-sensitive tasks

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Maria Luz eGonzalez-Gadea

    2014-10-01

    Full Text Available Emotion recognition and empathy abilities require the integration of contextual information in real-life scenarios. Previous reports have explored these domains in adolescent offenders (AOs but have not used tasks that replicate everyday situations. In this study we included ecological measures with different levels of contextual dependence to evaluate emotion recognition and empathy in AOs relative to non-offenders, controlling for the effect of demographic variables. We also explored the influence of fluid intelligence (FI and executive functions (EFs in the prediction of relevant deficits in these domains. Our results showed that AOs exhibit deficits in context-sensitive measures of emotion recognition and cognitive empathy. Difficulties in these tasks were neither explained by demographic variables nor predicted by FI or EFs. However, performance on measures that included simpler stimuli or could be solved by explicit knowledge was either only partially affected by demographic variables or preserved in AOs. These findings indicate that AOs show contextual social-cognition impairments which are relatively independent of basic cognitive functioning and demographic variables.

  13. Adapting Cognitive Task Analysis to Investigate Clinical Decision Making and Medication Safety Incidents.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Russ, Alissa L; Militello, Laura G; Glassman, Peter A; Arthur, Karen J; Zillich, Alan J; Weiner, Michael

    2017-05-03

    Cognitive task analysis (CTA) can yield valuable insights into healthcare professionals' cognition and inform system design to promote safe, quality care. Our objective was to adapt CTA-the critical decision method, specifically-to investigate patient safety incidents, overcome barriers to implementing this method, and facilitate more widespread use of cognitive task analysis in healthcare. We adapted CTA to facilitate recruitment of healthcare professionals and developed a data collection tool to capture incidents as they occurred. We also leveraged the electronic health record (EHR) to expand data capture and used EHR-stimulated recall to aid reconstruction of safety incidents. We investigated 3 categories of medication-related incidents: adverse drug reactions, drug-drug interactions, and drug-disease interactions. Healthcare professionals submitted incidents, and a subset of incidents was selected for CTA. We analyzed several outcomes to characterize incident capture and completed CTA interviews. We captured 101 incidents. Eighty incidents (79%) met eligibility criteria. We completed 60 CTA interviews, 20 for each incident category. Capturing incidents before interviews allowed us to shorten the interview duration and reduced reliance on healthcare professionals' recall. Incorporating the EHR into CTA enriched data collection. The adapted CTA technique was successful in capturing specific categories of safety incidents. Our approach may be especially useful for investigating safety incidents that healthcare professionals "fix and forget." Our innovations to CTA are expected to expand the application of this method in healthcare and inform a wide range of studies on clinical decision making and patient safety.

  14. Dissociable effects of game elements on motivation and cognition in a task-switching training in middle childhood

    OpenAIRE

    Dörrenbächer, Sandra; Müller, Philipp M.; Tröger, Johannes; Kray, Jutta

    2014-01-01

    Although motivational reinforcers are often used to enhance the attractiveness of trainings of cognitive control in children, little is known about how such motivational manipulations of the setting contribute to separate gains in motivation and cognitive-control performance. Here we provide a framework for systematically investigating the impact of a motivational video-game setting on the training motivation, the task performance, and the transfer success in a task-switching training in midd...

  15. Is conflict monitoring supramodal? Spatiotemporal dynamics of cognitive control processes in an auditory Stroop task

    Science.gov (United States)

    Donohue, Sarah E.; Liotti, Mario; Perez, Rick; Woldorff, Marty G.

    2011-01-01

    The electrophysiological correlates of conflict processing and cognitive control have been well characterized for the visual modality in paradigms such as the Stroop task. Much less is known about corresponding processes in the auditory modality. Here, electroencephalographic recordings of brain activity were measured during an auditory Stroop task, using three different forms of behavioral response (Overt verbal, Covert verbal, and Manual), that closely paralleled our previous visual-Stroop study. As expected, behavioral responses were slower and less accurate for incongruent compared to congruent trials. Neurally, incongruent trials showed an enhanced fronto-central negative-polarity wave (Ninc), similar to the N450 in visual-Stroop tasks, with similar variations as a function of behavioral response mode, but peaking ~150 ms earlier, followed by an enhanced positive posterior wave. In addition, sequential behavioral and neural effects were observed that supported the conflict-monitoring and cognitive-adjustment hypothesis. Thus, while some aspects of the conflict detection processes, such as timing, may be modality-dependent, the general mechanisms would appear to be supramodal. PMID:21964643

  16. The Role of Cognitive Load in Intentional Forgetting Using the Think/No-Think Task.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Noreen, Saima; de Fockert, Jan W

    2017-01-01

    We investigated the role of cognitive control in intentional forgetting by manipulating working memory load during the think/no-think task. In two experiments, participants learned a series of cue-target word pairs and were asked to recall the target words associated with some cues or to avoid thinking about the target associated with other cues. In addition to this, participants also performed a modified version of the n-back task which required them to respond to the identity of a single target letter present in the currently presented cue word (n = 0 condition, low working memory load), and in either the previous cue word (n = 1 condition, high working memory load, Experiment 1) or the cue word presented two trials previously (n = 2 condition, high working memory load, Experiment 2). Participants' memory for the target words was subsequently tested using same and novel independent probes. In both experiments it was found that although participants were successful at forgetting on both the same and independent-probe tests in the low working memory load condition, they were only successful at forgetting on the same-probe test in the high working memory load condition. We argue that our findings suggest that the high load working memory task diverted attention from direct suppression and acted as an interference-based strategy. Thus, when cognitive resources are limited participants can switch between the strategies they use to prevent unwanted memories from coming to mind.

  17. Task demands modulate decision and eye movement responses in the chimeric face test: examining the right hemisphere processing account

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jason eCoronel

    2014-03-01

    Full Text Available A large and growing body of work, conducted in both brain-intact and brain-damaged populations, has used the free viewing chimeric face test as a measure of hemispheric dominance for the extraction of emotional information from faces. These studies generally show that normal right-handed individuals tend to perceive chimeric faces as more emotional if the emotional expression is presented on the half of the face to the viewer’s left (left hemiface. However, the mechanisms underlying this lateralized bias remain unclear. Here, we examine the extent to which this bias is driven by right hemisphere processing advantages versus default scanning biases in a unique way -- by changing task demands. In particular, we compare the original task with one in which right-hemisphere-biased processing cannot provide a decision advantage. Our behavioral and eye-movement data are inconsistent with the predictions of a default scanning bias account and support the idea that the left hemiface bias found in the chimeric face test is largely due to strategic use of right hemisphere processing mechanisms.

  18. Measuring Cognitive Load during Simulation-Based Psychomotor Skills Training: Sensitivity of Secondary-Task Performance and Subjective Ratings

    Science.gov (United States)

    Haji, Faizal A.; Khan, Rabia; Regehr, Glenn; Drake, James; de Ribaupierre, Sandrine; Dubrowski, Adam

    2015-01-01

    As interest in applying cognitive load theory (CLT) to the study and design of pedagogic and technological approaches in healthcare simulation grows, suitable measures of cognitive load (CL) are needed. Here, we report a two-phased study investigating the sensitivity of subjective ratings of mental effort (SRME) and secondary-task performance…

  19. Expectancy of Stress-Reducing Aromatherapy Effect and Performance on a Stress-Sensitive Cognitive Task

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Irina Chamine

    2015-01-01

    Full Text Available Objective. Stress-reducing therapies help maintain cognitive performance during stress. Aromatherapy is popular for stress reduction, but its effectiveness and mechanism are unclear. This study examined stress-reducing effects of aromatherapy on cognitive function using the go/no-go (GNG task performance and event related potentials (ERP components sensitive to stress. The study also assessed the importance of expectancy in aromatherapy actions. Methods. 81 adults were randomized to 3 aroma groups (active experimental, detectable, and undetectable placebo and 2 prime subgroups (prime suggesting stress-reducing aroma effects or no-prime. GNG performance, ERPs, subjective expected aroma effects, and stress ratings were assessed at baseline and poststress. Results. No specific aroma effects on stress or cognition were observed. However, regardless of experienced aroma, people receiving a prime displayed faster poststress median reaction times than those receiving no prime. A significant interaction for N200 amplitude indicated divergent ERP patterns between baseline and poststress for go and no-go stimuli depending on the prime subgroup. Furthermore, trends for beneficial prime effects were shown on poststress no-go N200/P300 latencies and N200 amplitude. Conclusion. While there were no aroma-specific effects on stress or cognition, these results highlight the role of expectancy for poststress response inhibition and attention.

  20. Expectancy of Stress-Reducing Aromatherapy Effect and Performance on a Stress-Sensitive Cognitive Task

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chamine, Irina; Oken, Barry S.

    2015-01-01

    Objective. Stress-reducing therapies help maintain cognitive performance during stress. Aromatherapy is popular for stress reduction, but its effectiveness and mechanism are unclear. This study examined stress-reducing effects of aromatherapy on cognitive function using the go/no-go (GNG) task performance and event related potentials (ERP) components sensitive to stress. The study also assessed the importance of expectancy in aromatherapy actions. Methods. 81 adults were randomized to 3 aroma groups (active experimental, detectable, and undetectable placebo) and 2 prime subgroups (prime suggesting stress-reducing aroma effects or no-prime). GNG performance, ERPs, subjective expected aroma effects, and stress ratings were assessed at baseline and poststress. Results. No specific aroma effects on stress or cognition were observed. However, regardless of experienced aroma, people receiving a prime displayed faster poststress median reaction times than those receiving no prime. A significant interaction for N200 amplitude indicated divergent ERP patterns between baseline and poststress for go and no-go stimuli depending on the prime subgroup. Furthermore, trends for beneficial prime effects were shown on poststress no-go N200/P300 latencies and N200 amplitude. Conclusion. While there were no aroma-specific effects on stress or cognition, these results highlight the role of expectancy for poststress response inhibition and attention. PMID:25802539

  1. Acquiring a cognitive skill with a new repeating version of the Tower of London task.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ouellet, Marie-Christine; Beauchamp, Miriam H; Owen, Adrian M; Doyon, Julien

    2004-12-01

    A computerized version of the Tower of London task was used to investigate cognitive skill learning. Thirty-six healthy volunteers were assigned to either a random condition (nonrecurring problems), or to a sequence condition in which, unbeknownst to the subjects, a repeating sequence of three problems was presented. Indices of execution, planning, and total time, as well as number of moves performed, were used to measure behavioural change. Subjects' performance improved in both conditions across blocks of practice. A distinct learning effect related to the repeating sequence was also observed. This suggests that a specific skill that reflects procedural learning of the strategies, rules, and procedures pertaining to repeating problems can develop over and above a more general skill at solving cognitive planning problems with practice.

  2. Reward-based training of recurrent neural networks for cognitive and value-based tasks.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Song, H Francis; Yang, Guangyu R; Wang, Xiao-Jing

    2017-01-13

    Trained neural network models, which exhibit features of neural activity recorded from behaving animals, may provide insights into the circuit mechanisms of cognitive functions through systematic analysis of network activity and connectivity. However, in contrast to the graded error signals commonly used to train networks through supervised learning, animals learn from reward feedback on definite actions through reinforcement learning. Reward maximization is particularly relevant when optimal behavior depends on an animal's internal judgment of confidence or subjective preferences. Here, we implement reward-based training of recurrent neural networks in which a value network guides learning by using the activity of the decision network to predict future reward. We show that such models capture behavioral and electrophysiological findings from well-known experimental paradigms. Our work provides a unified framework for investigating diverse cognitive and value-based computations, and predicts a role for value representation that is essential for learning, but not executing, a task.

  3. Lexical selection in the semantically blocked cyclic naming task: The role of cognitive control and learning

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jason E. Crowther

    2014-01-01

    Full Text Available Studies of semantic interference in language production have provided evidence for a role of cognitive control mechanisms in regulating the activation of semantic competitors during naming. The present study investigated the relationship between individual differences in cognitive control abilities, for both younger and older adults, and the degree of semantic interference in a blocked cyclic naming task. We predicted that individuals with lower working memory capacity (as measured by word span, lesser ability to inhibit distracting responses (as measured by Stroop interference, and a lesser ability to resolve proactive interference (as measured by a recent negatives task would show a greater increase in semantic interference in naming, with effects being larger for older adults. Instead, measures of cognitive control were found to relate to specific indices of semantic interference in the naming task, rather than overall degree of semantic interference, and few interactions with age were found, with younger and older adults performing similarly. The increase in naming latencies across naming trials within a cycle were negatively correlated with word span for both related and unrelated conditions, suggesting a strategy of narrowing response alternatives based upon memory for the set of item names. Evidence for a role of inhibition in response selection was obtained, as Stroop interference correlated positively with the change in naming latencies across cycles for the related, but not unrelated, condition. In contrast, recent negatives interference correlated negatively with the change in naming latencies across unrelated cycles, suggesting that individual differences in this tap the degree of strengthening of links in a lexical network based upon prior exposure. Results are discussed in terms of current models of lexical selection and consequences for word retrieval in more naturalistic production.

  4. Reducing motion sickness - A comparison of autogenic-feedback training and an alternative cognitive task

    Science.gov (United States)

    Toscano, W. B.; Cowings, P. S.

    1982-01-01

    Eighteen men were randomly assigned to three groups matched for susceptibility to Coriolis motion sickness. All subjects were given six Coriolis Sickness Susceptibility Index (CSSI) tests separated by 5-d intervals. Treatment Group I subjects were taught to control their own autonomic responses before the third, fourth, and fifth CSSI tests (6 h total training). Group II subjects were given 'sham' training in an alternative cognitive task under conditions otherwise identical to those of Group I. Group III subjects received no treatment. Results showed that Group I subjects could withstand the stress of Coriolis acceleration significantly longer after training. Neither of the other two groups changed significantly.

  5. "Surgery interrupted": The effect of multitasking on cognitive and technical tasks in medical students.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Evans, C H; Schneider, E; Shostrom, V; Schenarts, P J

    2017-02-01

    Today's medical learners are Millennials, and reportedly, multitasking pros. We aim to evaluate effect of multitasking on cognitive and technical skills. 16 medical students completed a mock page and laceration closure separately on day 1 and day 13, and in parallel on day 14. Suturing was graded using GRS and mock pages scored. Total time, suturing and loading times, and percent correct on mock page were compared. Percent correct on mock page improved from days 1-13 and 14 (p multitasking results in longer times to complete the complex component of the technical task. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  6. Cognitive-motor dual-task interference modulates mediolateral dynamic stability during gait in post-stroke individuals.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tisserand, R; Armand, S; Allali, G; Schnider, A; Baillieul, S

    2018-04-01

    Gait asymmetry and dynamic balance impairments observed in post-stroke individuals increase their risk of fall. Moreover, walking while performing a cognitive task (i.e. dual-task) disturbs the control of balance in post-stroke individuals. Here we investigated the mediolateral dynamic stability in twenty-two community-dwelling participants (12 post-strokes and 10 healthy controls) while walking in single-task (normal gait) and four different dual-tasks (cognitive-motor interference). Positions of the extrapolated center of mass and mediolateral widths of both margin of stability and base of support were extracted from 35 marker trajectories. Post-stroke participants presented larger margin of stability and base of support than controls during single-task (both p dual-task was found between groups. In post-stroke participants, dual-task induced slight modification of the mediolateral stability strategy, as the margin of stability was not different between the two limbs at foot-strike, and significantly reduced the performance in every cognitive task. Post-stroke participants increased their dynamic stability in the frontal plane in single-task by extending their base of support and mainly relying on their non-paretic limb. Under cognitive-motor interference (dual-task), post-stroke participants prioritized dynamic stability over cognitive performance to ensure a safe locomotion. Thus, rehabilitation programs should consider both dynamic balance and dual-task training, even at a chronic delay following stroke, to reduce the risk of fall in post-stroke individuals. Copyright © 2018 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2013-11-01

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

  8. Postural control and cognitive task performance in healthy participants while balancing on different support-surface configurations

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Dault, MC; Mulder, TW; Duysens, J

    2001-01-01

    Postural control during normal upright stance in humans is a well-learned task. Hence, it has often been argued that it requires very little attention. However, many studies have recently shown that postural control is modified when a cognitive task is executed simultaneously especially in the

  9. Cognitive function predicts listening effort performance during complex tasks in normally aging adults

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jennine Harvey

    2017-01-01

    Full Text Available Purpose: This study examines whether cognitive function, as measured by the subtests of the Woodcock–Johnson III (WCJ-III assessment, predicts listening-effort performance during dual tasks across the adults of varying ages. Materials and Methods: Participants were divided into two groups. Group 1 consisted of 14 listeners (number of females = 11 who were 41–61 years old [mean = 53.18; standard deviation (SD = 5.97]. Group 2 consisted of 15 listeners (number of females = 9 who were 63–81 years old (mean = 72.07; SD = 5.11. Participants were administered the WCJ-III Memory for Words, Auditory Working Memory, Visual Matching, and Decision Speed subtests. All participants were tested in each of the following three dual-task experimental conditions, which were varying in complexity: (1 auditory word recognition + visual processing, (2 auditory working memory (word + visual processing, and (3 auditory working memory (sentence + visual processing in noise. Results: A repeated measures analysis of variance revealed that task complexity significantly affected the performance measures of auditory accuracy, visual accuracy, and processing speed. Linear regression revealed that the cognitive subtests of the WCJ-III test significantly predicted performance across dependent variable measures. Conclusion: Listening effort is significantly affected by task complexity, regardless of age. Performance on the WCJ-III test may predict listening effort in adults and may assist speech-language pathologist (SLPs to understand challenges faced by participants when subjected to noise.

  10. Demand characteristics, pre-test attitudes and time-on-task trends in the effects of chewing gum on attention and reported mood in healthy volunteers.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Allen, A P; Smith, A P

    2012-10-01

    Previous research has indicated that chewing gum enhances reported alertness, but has variable effects on attention. Demand characteristics may explain these effects. The current study investigated the effects of gum and demand characteristics on attention and reported mood over time. Participants completed measures of mood and attention, with and without chewing gum. To manipulate demand characteristics, they were told that the hypothesised effect of gum was either positive or negative, or no hypothesis was mentioned. Attitudes towards gum were assessed pre- and post-manipulation. Gum increased reported alertness; this effect was only significant for positive and neutral demand characteristics. Vigilance accuracy was reduced for chewing gum, but only in the fourth minute of the task, and gum reduced focussed attention accuracy, but only for the first 64 trials. Demand characteristics did not moderate time-on-task effects. Gum improved selective attention. A positive effect on response organisation was observed; this was significant when demand characteristics and pre-test attitudes to gum were both negative. The results suggest that demand characteristics moderate effects on self-reported alertness and response organisation, but cannot explain time-on-task effects or variable main effects on other aspects of attention. Copyright © 2012 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  11. Effect of task-oriented activities on hand functions, cognitive functions and self-expression of elderly patients with dementia.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Son, Bo-Young; Bang, Yo-Soon; Hwang, Min-Ji; Oh, Eun-Ju

    2017-08-01

    [Purpose] This study investigates the effects of task-oriented activities on hand function, cognitive function, and self-expression of the elderly with dementia, and then identify the influencing factors on self-expression in sub-factors of dependent variables. [Subjects and Methods] Forty elderly persons were divided into two groups: intervention group (n=20) and control group (n=20). The interventions were applied to the subjects 3 times a week, 50 minutes per each time, for a total of five weeks. We measured the jamar hand dynamometer test for grip strength, the jamar hydraulic pinch gauge test for prehension test, nine-hole pegboard test for coordination test, and Loewenstein Occupational Therapy Cognitive Assessment-Geriatric Population for cognitive function, and self-expression rating scale for self-expression test. [Results] The task-oriented activities promoted hand function, cognitive function (visual perception, spatial perception, visuomotor organization, attention & concentration) and self-expression of the elderly with early dementia, and the factors influencing the self-expression were cognitive function (visual perception) and hand function (coordination). The study showed that the task-oriented program enabled self-expression by improving hand function and cognitive function. [Conclusion] This study suggested that there should be provided the task-oriented program for prevention and treatment of the elderly with early dementia in the clinical settings and it was considered that results have a value as basic data that can be verified relationship of hand function, cognitive function, and self-expression.

  12. Association of Dual-Task Gait With Incident Dementia in Mild Cognitive Impairment: Results From the Gait and Brain Study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Montero-Odasso, Manuel M; Sarquis-Adamson, Yanina; Speechley, Mark; Borrie, Michael J; Hachinski, Vladimir C; Wells, Jennie; Riccio, Patricia M; Schapira, Marcelo; Sejdic, Ervin; Camicioli, Richard M; Bartha, Robert; McIlroy, William E; Muir-Hunter, Susan

    2017-07-01

    Gait performance is affected by neurodegeneration in aging and has the potential to be used as a clinical marker for progression from mild cognitive impairment (MCI) to dementia. A dual-task gait test evaluating the cognitive-motor interface may predict dementia progression in older adults with MCI. To determine whether a dual-task gait test is associated with incident dementia in MCI. The Gait and Brain Study is an ongoing prospective cohort study of community-dwelling older adults that enrolled 112 older adults with MCI. Participants were followed up for 6 years, with biannual visits including neurologic, cognitive, and gait assessments. Data were collected from July 2007 to March 2016. Incident all-cause dementia was the main outcome measure, and single- and dual-task gait velocity and dual-task gait costs were the independent variables. A neuropsychological test battery was used to assess cognition. Gait velocity was recorded under single-task and 3 separate dual-task conditions using an electronic walkway. Dual-task gait cost was defined as the percentage change between single- and dual-task gait velocities: ([single-task gait velocity - dual-task gait velocity]/ single-task gait velocity) × 100. Cox proportional hazard models were used to estimate the association between risk of progression to dementia and the independent variables, adjusted for age, sex, education, comorbidities, and cognition. Among 112 study participants with MCI, mean (SD) age was 76.6 (6.9) years, 55 were women (49.1%), and 27 progressed to dementia (24.1%), with an incidence rate of 121 per 1000 person-years. Slow single-task gait velocity (gait cost while counting backward (HR, 3.79; 95% CI, 1.57-9.15; P = .003) and naming animals (HR, 2.41; 95% CI, 1.04-5.59; P = .04) were associated with dementia progression (incidence rate, 155 per 1000 person-years). The models remained robust after adjusting by baseline cognition except for dual-task gait cost when dichotomized. Dual-task

  13. The application of subjective job task analysis techniques in physically demanding occupations: evidence for the presence of self-serving bias.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lee-Bates, Benjamin; Billing, Daniel C; Caputi, Peter; Carstairs, Greg L; Linnane, Denise; Middleton, Kane

    2017-09-01

    The aim of this study was to determine if perceptions of physically demanding job tasks are biased by employee demographics and employment profile characteristics including: age, sex, experience, length of tenure, rank and if they completed or supervised a task. Surveys were administered to 427 Royal Australian Navy personnel who characterised 33 tasks in terms of physical effort, importance, frequency, duration and vertical/horizontal distance travelled. Results showed no evidence of bias resulting from participant characteristics, however participants who were actively involved in both task participation and supervision rated these tasks as more important than those involved only in the supervision of that task. This may indicate self-serving bias in which participants that are more actively involved in a task had an inflated perception of that task's importance. These results have important implications for the conduct of job task analyses, especially the use of subjective methodologies in the development of scientifically defensible physical employment standards. Practitioner Summary: To examine the presence of systematic bias in subjective job task analysis methodologies, a survey was conducted on a sample of Royal Australian Navy personnel. The relationship between job task descriptions and participant's demographic and job profile characteristics revealed the presence of self-serving bias affecting perceptions of task importance.

  14. One Task, Divergent Solutions: High- versus Low-Status Sources and Social Comparison Guide Adaptation in a Computer-Supported Socio-Cognitive Conflict Task

    Science.gov (United States)

    Baumeister, Antonia E.; Engelmann, Tanja; Hesse, Friedrich W.

    2017-01-01

    This experimental study extends conflict elaboration theory (1) by revealing social influence dynamics for a knowledge-rich computer-supported socio-cognitive conflict task not investigated in the context of this theory before and (2) by showing the impact of individual differences in social comparison orientation. Students in two conditions…

  15. Disadvantageous Deck Selection in the Iowa Gambling Task: The Effect of Cognitive Load

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Melissa J. Hawthorne

    2015-05-01

    Full Text Available Research has shown that cognitive load affects overall Iowa Gambling Task (IGT performance, but it is unknown whether such load impacts the selection of the individual decks that correspond to gains or losses. Here, participants performed the IGT either in a full attention condition or while engaged in a number monitoring task to divide attention. Results showed that the full attention group was more aware of the magnitude of gains or losses for each draw (i.e., payoff awareness than was the divided attention group. However, the divided attention group was more sensitive to the frequency of the losses (i.e., frequency awareness, as evidenced by their increased preference for Deck B, which is the large but infrequent loss deck. An analysis across blocks showed that the number monitoring group was consistently more aware of loss frequency, whereas the full attention group shifted between awareness of loss frequency and awareness of payoff amount. Furthermore, the full attention group was better able to weigh loss frequency and payoff amount when making deck selections. These findings support the notion that diminished cognitive resources may result in greater selection of Deck B, otherwise known as the prominent Deck B phenomenon.

  16. Deficits of spatial and task-related attentional selection in mild cognitive impairment and Alzheimer's disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Redel, P; Bublak, P; Sorg, C; Kurz, A; Förstl, H; Müller, H J; Schneider, W X; Perneczky, R; Finke, K

    2012-01-01

    Visual selective attention was assessed with a partial-report task in patients with probable Alzheimer's disease (AD), amnestic mild cognitive impairment (MCI), and healthy elderly controls. Based on Bundesen's "theory of visual attention" (TVA), two parameters were derived: top-down control of attentional selection, representing task-related attentional weighting for prioritizing relevant visual objects, and spatial distribution of attentional weights across the left and the right hemifield. Compared with controls, MCI patients showed significantly reduced top-down controlled selection, which was further deteriorated in AD subjects. Moreover, attentional weighting was significantly unbalanced across hemifields in MCI and tended to be more lateralized in AD. Across MCI and AD patients, carriers of the apolipoprotein E ε4 allele (ApoE4) displayed a leftward spatial bias, which was the more pronounced the younger the ApoE4-positive patients and the earlier disease onset. These results indicate that impaired top-down control may be linked to early dysfunction of fronto-parietal networks. An early temporo-parietal interhemispheric asymmetry might cause a pathological spatial bias which is associated with ApoE4 genotype and may therefore function as early cognitive marker of upcoming AD. Copyright © 2012 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  17. Altered Distant Synchronization of Background Network in Mild Cognitive Impairment during an Executive Function Task

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Pengyun Wang

    2017-09-01

    Full Text Available Few studies to date have investigated the background network in the cognitive state relying on executive function in mild cognitive impairment (MCI patients. Using the index of degree of centrality (DC, we explored distant synchronization of background network in MCI during a hybrid delayed-match-to-sample task (DMST, which mainly relies on the working memory component of executive function. We observed significant interactions between group and cognitive state in the bilateral posterior cingulate cortex (PCC and the ventral subregion of precuneus. For normal control (NC group, the long distance functional connectivity (FC of the PCC/precuneus with the other regions of the brain was higher in rest state than that working memory state. For MCI patients, however, this pattern altered. There was no significant difference between rest and working memory state. The similar pattern was observed in the other cluster located in the right angular gyrus. To examine whether abnormal DC in PCC/precuneus and angular gyrus partially resulted from the deficit of FC between these regions and the other parts in the whole brain, we conducted a seed-based correlation analysis with these regions as seeds. The results indicated that the FC between bilateral PCC/precuneus and the right inferior parietal lobule (IPL increased from rest to working memory state for NC participants. For MCI patients, however, there was no significant change between rest and working memory state. The similar pattern was observed for the FC between right angular gyrus and right anterior insula. However, there was no difference between MCI and NC groups in global efficiency and modularity. It may indicate a lack of efficient reorganization from rest state to a working memory state in the brain network of MCI patients. The present study demonstrates the altered distant synchronization of background network in MCI during a task relying on executive function. The results provide a new

  18. Radiological emergency response for community agencies with cognitive task analysis, risk analysis, and decision support framework.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Meyer, Travis S; Muething, Joseph Z; Lima, Gustavo Amoras Souza; Torres, Breno Raemy Rangel; del Rosario, Trystyn Keia; Gomes, José Orlando; Lambert, James H

    2012-01-01

    Radiological nuclear emergency responders must be able to coordinate evacuation and relief efforts following the release of radioactive material into populated areas. In order to respond quickly and effectively to a nuclear emergency, high-level coordination is needed between a number of large, independent organizations, including police, military, hazmat, and transportation authorities. Given the complexity, scale, time-pressure, and potential negative consequences inherent in radiological emergency responses, tracking and communicating information that will assist decision makers during a crisis is crucial. The emergency response team at the Angra dos Reis nuclear power facility, located outside of Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, presently conducts emergency response simulations once every two years to prepare organizational leaders for real-life emergency situations. However, current exercises are conducted without the aid of electronic or software tools, resulting in possible cognitive overload and delays in decision-making. This paper describes the development of a decision support system employing systems methodologies, including cognitive task analysis and human-machine interface design. The decision support system can aid the coordination team by automating cognitive functions and improving information sharing. A prototype of the design will be evaluated by plant officials in Brazil and incorporated to a future trial run of a response simulation.

  19. A Screen-Peck Task for Investigating Cognitive Bias in Laying Hens.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Amanda Deakin

    Full Text Available Affect-induced cognitive judgement biases occur in both humans and animals. Animals in a more negative affective state tend to interpret ambiguous cues more negatively than animals in a more positive state and vice versa. Investigating animals' responses to ambiguous cues can therefore be used as a proxy measure of affective state. We investigated laying hens' responses to ambiguous stimuli using a novel cognitive bias task. In the 'screen-peck' task, hens were trained to peck a high/low saturation orange circle presented on a computer screen (positive cue-P to obtain a mealworm reward, and to not peck when the oppositely saturated orange circle was presented (negative cue-N to avoid a one second air puff. Ambiguous cues were orange circles of intermediate saturation between the P and N cue (near-positive-NP; middle-M; near-negative-NN, and were unrewarded. Cue pecking showed a clear generalisation curve from P through NP, M, NN to N suggesting that hens were able to associate colour saturation with reward or punishment, and could discriminate between stimuli that were more or less similar to learnt cues. Across six test sessions, there was no evidence for extinction of pecking responses to ambiguous cues. We manipulated affective state by changing temperature during testing to either ~20°C or ~29°C in a repeated measures cross-over design. Hens have been shown to prefer temperatures in the higher range and hence we assumed that exposure to the higher temperature would induce a relatively positive affective state. Hens tested under warmer conditions were significantly more likely to peck the M probe than those tested at cooler temperatures suggesting that increased temperature in the ranges tested here may have some positive effect on hens, inducing a positive cognitive bias.

  20. The Applicability of Rhythm-Motor Tasks to a New Dual Task Paradigm for Older Adults

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Soo Ji Kim

    2017-12-01

    Full Text Available Given the interplay between cognitive and motor functions during walking, cognitive demands required during gait have been investigated with regard to dual task performance. Along with the needs to understand how the type of concurrent task while walking affects gait performance, there are calls for diversified dual tasks that can be applied to older adults with varying levels of cognitive decline. Therefore, this study aimed to examine how rhythm-motor tasks affect dual task performance and gait control, compared to a traditional cognitive-motor task. Also, it examined whether rhythm-motor tasks are correlated with traditional cognitive-motor task performance and cognitive measures. Eighteen older adults without cognitive impairment participated in this study. Each participant was instructed to walk at self-paced tempo without performing a concurrent task (single walking task and walk while separately performing two types of concurrent tasks: rhythm-motor and cognitive-motor tasks. Rhythm-motor tasks included instrument playing (WalkIP, matching to rhythmic cueing (WalkRC, and instrument playing while matching to rhythmic cueing (WalkIP+RC. The cognitive-motor task involved counting forward by 3s (WalkCount.f3. In each condition, dual task costs (DTC, a measure for how dual tasks affect gait parameters, were measured in terms of walking speed and stride length. The ratio of stride length to walking speed, a measure for dynamic control of gait, was also examined. The results of this study demonstrated that the task type was found to significantly influence these measures. Rhythm-motor tasks were found to interfere with gait parameters to a lesser extent than the cognitive-motor task (WalkCount.f3. In terms of ratio measures, stride length remained at a similar level, walking speed greatly decreased in the WalkCount.f3 condition. Significant correlations between dual task-related measures during rhythm-motor and cognitive-motor tasks support the

  1. Behavioral Economic Purchase Tasks to Estimate Demand for Novel Nicotine/Tobacco Products and Prospectively Predict Future Use: Evidence from the Netherlands.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Heckman, Bryan W; Cummings, K Michael; Nahas, Georges J; Willemsen, Marc C; O'Connor, Richard J; Borland, Ron; Hirsch, Alexander A; Bickel, Warren K; Carpenter, Matthew J

    2018-03-14

    The demand for alternative nicotine/tobacco products is not well established. This paper uses a behavioral economic approach to test whether smokers have differential demand for conventional factory-made, electronic, and very low nicotine content cigarettes (FMCs/ECs/VLNCs) and uses the prospective cohort design to test the predictive validity of demand indices on subsequent use of commercially available FMCs and ECs. Daily smokers (>16 years) from the Netherlands completed an online survey in April 2014 (N=1215). Purchase tasks were completed for FMCs, ECs, and VLNCs. Participants indicated the number of cigarettes they would consume in 24 hours, across a range of prices (0-30 euro). The relationship between consumption and price was quantified into four indices of demand (intensity, Pmax, breakpoint, and essential value). A follow-up survey in July 2015 measured FMC and EC use. At baseline, greater demand was observed for FMCs relative to ECs and VLNCs across all demand indices, with no difference between ECs and VLNCs. At follow-up, greater baseline FMC demand (intensity, essential value) was associated with lower quit rates and higher relapse. EC demand (Pmax, breakpoint, essential value) was positively associated with any EC use between survey waves, past 30 day EC use, and EC purchase between waves. Smokers valued FMCs more than ECs or VLNCs, and FMCs were less sensitive to price increases. Demand indices predicted use of commercially available products over a 15 month period. To serve as viable substitutes for FMCs, ECs and VLNCs will need to be priced lower than FMCs. Purchase tasks can be adapted for novel nicotine/tobacco products as a means to efficiently quantify demand and predict use. Among current daily smokers, the demand for ECs and VLNCs is lower than FMCs.

  2. Guidelines for cognitive behavioral training within doctoral psychology programs in the United States: report of the Inter-organizational Task Force on Cognitive and Behavioral Psychology Doctoral Education.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Klepac, Robert K; Ronan, George F; Andrasik, Frank; Arnold, Kevin D; Belar, Cynthia D; Berry, Sharon L; Christofff, Karen A; Craighead, Linda W; Dougher, Michael J; Dowd, E Thomas; Herbert, James D; McFarr, Lynn M; Rizvi, Shireen L; Sauer, Eric M; Strauman, Timothy J

    2012-12-01

    The Association for Behavioral and Cognitive Therapies initiated an interorganizational task force to develop guidelines for integrated education and training in cognitive and behavioral psychology at the doctoral level in the United States. Fifteen task force members representing 16 professional associations participated in a year-long series of conferences, and developed a consensus on optimal doctoral education and training in cognitive and behavioral psychology. The recommendations assume solid foundational training that is typical within applied psychology areas such as clinical and counseling psychology programs located in the United States. This article details the background, assumptions, and resulting recommendations specific to doctoral education and training in cognitive and behavioral psychology, including competencies expected in the areas of ethics, research, and practice. Copyright © 2012. Published by Elsevier Ltd.

  3. Sustained attention failures are primarily due to sustained cognitive load not task monotony.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Head, James; Helton, William S

    2014-11-01

    We conducted two studies using a modified sustained attention to response task (SART) to investigate the developmental process of SART performance and the role of cognitive load on performance when the speed-accuracy trade-off is controlled experimentally. In study 1, 23 participants completed the modified SART (target stimuli location was not predictable) and a subjective thought content questionnaire 4 times over the span of 4 weeks. As predicted, the influence of speed-accuracy trade-off was significantly mitigated on the modified SART by having target stimuli occur in unpredictable locations. In study 2, 21 of the 23 participants completed an abridged version of the modified SART with a verbal free-recall memory task. Participants performed significantly worse when completing the verbal memory task and SART concurrently. Overall, the results support a resource theory perspective with concern to errors being a result of limited mental resources and not simply mindlessness per se. Copyright © 2014. Published by Elsevier B.V.

  4. Humans Integrate Monetary and Liquid Incentives to Motivate Cognitive Task Performance

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Debbie Marianne Yee

    2016-01-01

    Full Text Available It is unequivocal that a wide variety of incentives can motivate behavior. However, few studies have explicitly examined whether and how different incentives are integrated in terms of their motivational influence. The current study examines the combined effects of monetary and liquid incentives on cognitive processing, and whether appetitive and aversive incentives have distinct influences. We introduce a novel task paradigm, in which participants perform cued task-switching for monetary rewards that vary parametrically across trials, with liquid incentives serving as post-trial performance feedback. Critically, the symbolic meaning of the liquid was held constant (indicating successful reward attainment, while liquid valence was blocked. In the first experiment, monetary rewards combined additively with appetitive liquid feedback to improve subject task performance. Aversive liquid feedback counteracted monetary reward effects in low monetary reward trials, particularly in a subset of participants who tended to avoid responding under these conditions. Self-report motivation ratings predicted behavioral performance above and beyond experimental effects. A follow-up experiment replicated the predictive power of motivation ratings even when only appetitive liquids were used, suggesting that ratings reflect idiosyncratic subjective values of, rather than categorical differences between, the liquid incentives. Together, the findings indicate an integrative relationship between primary and secondary incentives and potentially dissociable influences in modulating motivational value, while informing hypotheses regarding candidate neural mechanisms.

  5. Humans Integrate Monetary and Liquid Incentives to Motivate Cognitive Task Performance

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yee, Debbie M.; Krug, Marie K.; Allen, Ariel Z.; Braver, Todd S.

    2016-01-01

    It is unequivocal that a wide variety of incentives can motivate behavior. However, few studies have explicitly examined whether and how different incentives are integrated in terms of their motivational influence. The current study examines the combined effects of monetary and liquid incentives on cognitive processing, and whether appetitive and aversive incentives have distinct influences. We introduce a novel task paradigm, in which participants perform cued task-switching for monetary rewards that vary parametrically across trials, with liquid incentives serving as post-trial performance feedback. Critically, the symbolic meaning of the liquid was held constant (indicating successful reward attainment), while liquid valence was blocked. In the first experiment, monetary rewards combined additively with appetitive liquid feedback to improve subject task performance. Aversive liquid feedback counteracted monetary reward effects in low monetary reward trials, particularly in a subset of participants who tended to avoid responding under these conditions. Self-report motivation ratings predicted behavioral performance above and beyond experimental effects. A follow-up experiment replicated the predictive power of motivation ratings even when only appetitive liquids were used, suggesting that ratings reflect idiosyncratic subjective values of, rather than categorical differences between, the liquid incentives. Together, the findings indicate an integrative relationship between primary and secondary incentives and potentially dissociable influences in modulating motivational value, while informing hypotheses regarding candidate neural mechanisms. PMID:26834668

  6. Dissociable contributions of anterior cingulate cortex and basolateral amygdala on a rodent cost/benefit decision-making task of cognitive effort.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hosking, Jay G; Cocker, Paul J; Winstanley, Catharine A

    2014-06-01

    Personal success often requires the choice to expend greater effort for larger rewards, and deficits in such effortful decision making accompany a number of illnesses including depression, schizophrenia, and attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder. Animal models have implicated brain regions such as the basolateral amygdala (BLA) and anterior cingulate cortex (ACC) in physical effort-based choice, but disentangling the unique contributions of these two regions has proven difficult, and effort demands in industrialized society are predominantly cognitive in nature. Here we utilize the rodent cognitive effort task (rCET), a modification of the five-choice serial reaction-time task, wherein animals can choose to expend greater visuospatial attention to obtain larger sucrose rewards. Temporary inactivation (via baclofen-muscimol) of BLA and ACC showed dissociable effects: BLA inactivation caused hard-working rats to 'slack off' and 'slacker' rats to work harder, whereas ACC inactivation caused all animals to reduce willingness to expend mental effort. Furthermore, BLA inactivation increased the time needed to make choices, whereas ACC inactivation increased motor impulsivity. These data illuminate unique contributions of BLA and ACC to effort-based decision making, and imply overlapping yet distinct circuitry for cognitive vs physical effort. Our understanding of effortful decision making may therefore require expanding our models beyond purely physical costs.

  7. Overweight and Cognitive Performance: High Body Mass Index Is Associated with Impairment in Reactive Control during Task Switching

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Laura Steenbergen

    2017-10-01

    Full Text Available The prevalence of weight problems is increasing worldwide. There is growing evidence that high body mass index (BMI is associated with frontal lobe dysfunction and deficits in cognitive control. The present study aims to clarify the association between weight status and the degree of impairment in cognitive flexibility, i.e., the ability to efficiently switch from one task to another, by disentangling the preparatory and residual domains of task switching. Twenty-six normal weight (BMI < 25, five males and twenty-six overweight (BMI ≥ 25, seven males university students performed a task-switching paradigm that provides a relatively well-established diagnostic measure of proactive vs. reactive control with regard to cognitive flexibility. Compared to individuals with a BMI lower than 25, overweight (i.e., ≥25 was associated with increased switching costs in the reactive switching condition (i.e., when preparation time is short, representing reduced cognitive flexibility in the preparatory domain. In addition, the overweight group reported significantly more depression and binge eating symptoms, although still indicating minimal depression. No between-group differences were found with regard to self-reported autism spectrum symptoms, impulsiveness, state- and trait anxiety, and cognitive reactivity to depression. The present findings are consistent with and extend previous literature showing that elevated BMI in young, otherwise healthy individuals is associated with significantly more switching costs due to inefficiency in the retrieval, implementation, and maintenance of task sets, indicating less efficient cognitive control functioning.

  8. Correlating behavioral responses to FMRI signals from human prefrontal cortex: examining cognitive processes using task analysis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    DeSouza, Joseph F X; Ovaysikia, Shima; Pynn, Laura

    2012-06-20

    The aim of this methods paper is to describe how to implement a neuroimaging technique to examine complementary brain processes engaged by two similar tasks. Participants' behavior during task performance in an fMRI scanner can then be correlated to the brain activity using the blood-oxygen-level-dependent signal. We measure behavior to be able to sort correct trials, where the subject performed the task correctly and then be able to examine the brain signals related to correct performance. Conversely, if subjects do not perform the task correctly, and these trials are included in the same analysis with the correct trials we would introduce trials that were not only for correct performance. Thus, in many cases these errors can be used themselves to then correlate brain activity to them. We describe two complementary tasks that are used in our lab to examine the brain during suppression of an automatic responses: the stroop(1) and anti-saccade tasks. The emotional stroop paradigm instructs participants to either report the superimposed emotional 'word' across the affective faces or the facial 'expressions' of the face stimuli(1,2). When the word and the facial expression refer to different emotions, a conflict between what must be said and what is automatically read occurs. The participant has to resolve the conflict between two simultaneously competing processes of word reading and facial expression. Our urge to read out a word leads to strong 'stimulus-response (SR)' associations; hence inhibiting these strong SR's is difficult and participants are prone to making errors. Overcoming this conflict and directing attention away from the face or the word requires the subject to inhibit bottom up processes which typically directs attention to the more salient stimulus. Similarly, in the anti-saccade task(3,4,5,6), where an instruction cue is used to direct only attention to a peripheral stimulus location but then the eye movement is made to the mirror opposite position

  9. Taekwondo Fighting in Training Does Not Simulate the Affective and Cognitive Demands of Competition: Implications for Behavior and Transfer.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Maloney, Michael A; Renshaw, Ian; Headrick, Jonathon; Martin, David T; Farrow, Damian

    2018-01-01

    Enhancing practice design is critical to facilitate transfer of learning. Considerable research has focused on the role of perceptual information in practice simulation, yet has neglected how affect and cognition are shaped by practice environments and whether this influences the fidelity of behavior (Headrick et al., 2015). This study filled this gap by examining the fidelity of individual (cognition, affect, and actions) and interpersonal behavior of 10 highly skilled Australian Taekwondo athletes fighting in training compared to competition. Interpersonal behavior was assessed by tracking location coordinates to analyze distance-time coordination tendencies of the fighter-fighter system. Individual actions were assessed through notational analysis and approximate entropy calculations of coordinate data to quantify the (un)predictability of movement displacement. Affect and cognition were assessed with mixed-methods that included perceptual scales measuring anxiety, arousal, and mental effort, and post-fight video-facilitated confrontational interviews to explore how affect and cognitions might differ. Quantitative differences were assessed with mixed models and dependent t -tests. Results reveal that individual and interpersonal behavior differed between training and competition. In training, individuals attacked less ( d = 0.81, p training, fighters had lower anxiety ( d = -1.26, p interpersonal behavior, with larger interpersonal distances generated by the fighter-fighter system in training ( d = 0.80, p training environment, such as reductions in pressure, arousal, and mental challenge. Findings highlight the specificity of performer-environment interactions. Fighting in training affords reduced affective and cognitive demands and a decrease in action fidelity compared to competition. In addition to sampling information, representative practice needs to consider modeling the cognitions and affect of competition to enhance transfer.

  10. The roles of sensory function and cognitive load in age differences in inhibition: Evidence from the Stroop task.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Peng, Huamao; Gao, Yue; Mao, Xiaofei

    2017-02-01

    To explore the roles of visual function and cognitive load in aging of inhibition, the present study adopted a 2 (visual perceptual stress: noise, nonnoise) × 2 (cognitive load: low, high) × 2 (age: young, old) mixed design. The Stroop task was adopted to measure inhibition. The task presentation was masked with Gaussian noise according to the visual function of each individual in order to match visual perceptual stress between age groups. The results indicated that age differences in the Stroop effect were influenced by visual function and cognitive load. When the cognitive load was low, older adults exhibited a larger Stroop effect than did younger adults in the nonnoise condition, and this age difference disappeared when the visual noise of the 2 age groups was matched. Conversely, in the high cognitive load condition, we observed significant age differences in the Stroop effect in both the nonnoise and noise conditions. The additional cognitive load made the age differences in the Stroop task reappear even when visual perceptual stress was equivalent. These results demonstrate that visual function plays an important role in the aging of inhibition and its role is moderated by cognitive load. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2017 APA, all rights reserved).

  11. Performance on naturalistic virtual reality tasks depends on global cognitive functioning as assessed via traditional neurocognitive tests.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Oliveira, Jorge; Gamito, Pedro; Alghazzawi, Daniyal M; Fardoun, Habib M; Rosa, Pedro J; Sousa, Tatiana; Picareli, Luís Felipe; Morais, Diogo; Lopes, Paulo

    2017-08-14

    This investigation sought to understand whether performance in naturalistic virtual reality tasks for cognitive assessment relates to the cognitive domains that are supposed to be measured. The Shoe Closet Test (SCT) was developed based on a simple visual search task involving attention skills, in which participants have to match each pair of shoes with the colors of the compartments in a virtual shoe closet. The interaction within the virtual environment was made using the Microsoft Kinect. The measures consisted of concurrent paper-and-pencil neurocognitive tests for global cognitive functioning, executive functions, attention, psychomotor ability, and the outcomes of the SCT. The results showed that the SCT correlated with global cognitive performance as measured with the Montreal Cognitive Assessment (MoCA). The SCT explained one third of the total variance of this test and revealed good sensitivity and specificity in discriminating scores below one standard deviation in this screening tool. These findings suggest that performance of such functional tasks involves a broad range of cognitive processes that are associated with global cognitive functioning and that may be difficult to isolate through paper-and-pencil neurocognitive tests.

  12. Comparative evaluation of three cognitive error analysis methods through an application to accident management tasks in NPPs

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Jung, Won Dea; Kim, Jae Whan; Ha, Jae Joo; Yoon, Wan C.

    1999-01-01

    This study was performed to comparatively evaluate selected Human Reliability Analysis (HRA) methods which mainly focus on cognitive error analysis, and to derive the requirement of a new human error analysis (HEA) framework for Accident Management (AM) in nuclear power plants(NPPs). In order to achieve this goal, we carried out a case study of human error analysis on an AM task in NPPs. In the study we evaluated three cognitive HEA methods, HRMS, CREAM and PHECA, which were selected through the review of the currently available seven cognitive HEA methods. The task of reactor cavity flooding was chosen for the application study as one of typical tasks of AM in NPPs. From the study, we derived seven requirement items for a new HEA method of AM in NPPs. We could also evaluate the applicability of three cognitive HEA methods to AM tasks. CREAM is considered to be more appropriate than others for the analysis of AM tasks. But, PHECA is regarded less appropriate for the predictive HEA technique as well as for the analysis of AM tasks. In addition to these, the advantages and disadvantages of each method are described. (author)

  13. Could High Mental Demands at Work Offset the Adverse Association Between Social Isolation and Cognitive Functioning? Results of the Population-Based LIFE-Adult-Study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rodriguez, Francisca S; Schroeter, Matthias L; Witte, A Veronica; Engel, Christoph; Löffler, Markus; Thiery, Joachim; Villringer, Arno; Luck, Tobias; Riedel-Heller, Steffi G

    2017-11-01

    The study investigated whether high mental demands at work, which have shown to promote a good cognitive functioning in old age, could offset the adverse association between social isolation and cognitive functioning. Based on data from the population-based LIFE-Adult-Study, the association between cognitive functioning (Verbal Fluency Test, Trail Making Test B) and social isolation (Lubben Social Network Scale) as well as mental demands at work (O*NET database) was analyzed via linear regression analyses adjusted for age, sex, education, and sampling weights. Cognitive functioning was significantly lower in socially isolated individuals and in individuals working in low mental demands jobs-even in old age after retirement and even after taking into account the educational level. An interaction effect suggested stronger effects of mental demands at work in socially isolated than nonisolated individuals. The findings suggest that working in high mental-demand jobs could offset the adverse association between social isolation and cognitive functioning. Further research should evaluate how interventions that target social isolation and enhance mentally demanding activities promote a good cognitive functioning in old age. Copyright © 2017 American Association for Geriatric Psychiatry. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  14. Modulation of brain activity during a Stroop inhibitory task by the kind of cognitive control required.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Julien Grandjean

    Full Text Available This study used a proportion congruency manipulation in the Stroop task in order to investigate, at the behavioral and brain substrate levels, the predictions derived from the Dual Mechanisms of Control (DMC account of two distinct modes of cognitive control depending on the task context. Three experimental conditions were created that varied the proportion congruency: mostly incongruent (MI, mostly congruent (MC, and mostly neutral (MN contexts. A reactive control strategy, which corresponds to transient interference resolution processes after conflict detection, was expected for the rare conflicting stimuli in the MC context, and a proactive strategy, characterized by a sustained task-relevant focus prior to the occurrence of conflict, was expected in the MI context. Results at the behavioral level supported the proactive/reactive distinction, with the replication of the classic proportion congruent effect (i.e., less interference and facilitation effects in the MI context. fMRI data only partially supported our predictions. Whereas reactive control for incongruent trials in the MC context engaged the expected fronto-parietal network including dorsolateral prefrontal cortex (DLPFC and anterior cingulate cortex, proactive control in the MI context was not associated with any sustained lateral prefrontal cortex activations, contrary to our hypothesis. Surprisingly, incongruent trials in the MI context elicited transient activation in common with incongruent trials in the MC context, especially in DLPFC, superior parietal lobe, and insula. This lack of sustained activity in MI is discussed in reference to the possible involvement of item-specific rather than list-wide mechanisms of control in the implementation of a high task-relevant focus.

  15. Developmental Demands of Cognitive Behavioral Therapy for Depression in Children and Adolescents: Cognitive, Social, and Emotional Processes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Garber, Judy; Frankel, Sarah A; Herrington, Catherine G

    2016-01-01

    Although some treatments for depression in children and adolescents have been found to be efficacious, the effects sizes have tended to be modest. Thus, there is considerable room to improve upon existing depression treatments. Some children may respond poorly because they do not yet have the cognitive, social, or emotional maturity needed to understand and apply the skills being taught in therapy. Therefore, treatments for depression may need to be tailored to match children's ability to both comprehend and implement the therapeutic techniques. This review outlines the steps needed for such developmental tailoring: (a) Specify the skills being taught in depression treatments; (b) identify what cognitive, social, and emotional developmental abilities are needed to attain these skills; (c) describe the normative developmental course of these skills and how to determine a child's developmental level; and (d) use this information to design an individualized treatment plan. Possible approaches to intervening include: alter the therapy to meet the child's level of development, train the child on the skills needed to engage in the therapy, or apply a dynamic assessment approach that integrates evaluation into treatment and measures children's current abilities as well as their potential.

  16. Longitudinal changes in task-evoked brain responses in Parkinson’s disease patients with and without mild cognitive impairment

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Urban eEkman

    2014-07-01

    Full Text Available Cognitive deficits are common in Parkinson’s disease. Previous cross-sectional research has demonstrated a link between cognitive impairments and fronto-striatal dopaminergic dysmodulation. However, longitudinal studies that link disease progression with altered task-evoked brain activity are lacking. Therefore, our objective was to longitudinally evaluate working-memory related brain activity changes in Parkinson’s disease patients with and without mild cognitive impairment.Patients were recruited within a longitudinal cohort study of incident patients with idiopathic parkinsonism. We longitudinally (at baseline examination and at 12-months follow-up compared 28 patients with Parkinson’s disease without mild cognitive impairment with 11 patients with Parkinson’s disease and mild cognitive impairment. Functional MRI blood oxygen level dependent signal was measured during a verbal two-back working-memory task. Patients with mild cognitive impairment under-recruited bilateral medial prefrontal cortex, right putamen, and lateral parietal cortex at both time-points (main effect of group: p<0.001, uncorrected. Critically, a significant group-by-time interaction effect (p<0.001, uncorrected was found in the right fusiform gyrus, indicating that working-memory related activity decreased for patients with Parkinson’s disease and mild cognitive impairment between baseline and follow-up, while patients without mild cognitive impairment were stable across time-points. The functional connectivity between right fusiform gyrus and bilateral caudate nucleus was stronger for patients without MCI relative to patients with MCI.Our findings support the view that deficits in working-memory updating are related to persistent fronto-striatal under-recruitments in patients with early phase Parkinson’s disease and mild cognitive impairment. The longitudinal evolution of mild cognitive impairment in Parkinson’s disease translates into additional task

  17. The right look for the job: decoding cognitive processes involved in the task from spatial eye-movement patterns.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Król, Magdalena Ewa; Król, Michał

    2018-02-20

    The aim of the study was not only to demonstrate whether eye-movement-based task decoding was possible but also to investigate whether eye-movement patterns can be used to identify cognitive processes behind the tasks. We compared eye-movement patterns elicited under different task conditions, with tasks differing systematically with regard to the types of cognitive processes involved in solving them. We used four tasks, differing along two dimensions: spatial (global vs. local) processing (Navon, Cognit Psychol, 9(3):353-383 1977) and semantic (deep vs. shallow) processing (Craik and Lockhart, J Verbal Learn Verbal Behav, 11(6):671-684 1972). We used eye-movement patterns obtained from two time periods: fixation cross preceding the target stimulus and the target stimulus. We found significant effects of both spatial and semantic processing, but in case of the latter, the effect might be an artefact of insufficient task control. We found above chance task classification accuracy for both time periods: 51.4% for the period of stimulus presentation and 34.8% for the period of fixation cross presentation. Therefore, we show that task can be to some extent decoded from the preparatory eye-movements before the stimulus is displayed. This suggests that anticipatory eye-movements reflect the visual scanning strategy employed for the task at hand. Finally, this study also demonstrates that decoding is possible even from very scant eye-movement data similar to Coco and Keller, J Vis 14(3):11-11 (2014). This means that task decoding is not limited to tasks that naturally take longer to perform and yield multi-second eye-movement recordings.

  18. Number line estimation and complex mental calculation: Is there a shared cognitive process driving the two tasks?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Montefinese, Maria; Semenza, Carlo

    2018-05-17

    It is widely accepted that different number-related tasks, including solving simple addition and subtraction, may induce attentional shifts on the so-called mental number line, which represents larger numbers on the right and smaller numbers on the left. Recently, it has been shown that different number-related tasks also employ spatial attention shifts along with general cognitive processes. Here we investigated for the first time whether number line estimation and complex mental arithmetic recruit a common mechanism in healthy adults. Participants' performance in two-digit mental additions and subtractions using visual stimuli was compared with their performance in a mental bisection task using auditory numerical intervals. Results showed significant correlations between participants' performance in number line bisection and that in two-digit mental arithmetic operations, especially in additions, providing a first proof of a shared cognitive mechanism (or multiple shared cognitive mechanisms) between auditory number bisection and complex mental calculation.

  19. The use of a cognitive task analysis-based multimedia program to teach surgical decision making in flexor tendon repair.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Luker, Kali R; Sullivan, Maura E; Peyre, Sarah E; Sherman, Randy; Grunwald, Tiffany

    2008-01-01

    The aim of this study was to compare the surgical knowledge of residents before and after receiving a cognitive task analysis-based multimedia teaching module. Ten plastic surgery residents were evaluated performing flexor tendon repair on 3 occasions. Traditional learning occurred between the first and second trial and served as the control. A teaching module was introduced as an intervention between the second and third trial using cognitive task analysis to illustrate decision-making skills. All residents showed improvement in their decision-making ability when performing flexor tendon repair after each surgical procedure. The group improved through traditional methods as well as exposure to our talk-aloud protocol (P > .01). After being trained using the cognitive task analysis curriculum the group displayed a statistically significant knowledge expansion (P multimedia surgical curriculum instruction achieved greater command of problem solving and are better equipped to make correct decisions in flexor tendon repair.

  20. Action video gaming and the brain: fMRI effects without behavioral effects in visual and verbal cognitive tasks.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Richlan, Fabio; Schubert, Juliane; Mayer, Rebecca; Hutzler, Florian; Kronbichler, Martin

    2018-01-01

    In this functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) study, we compared task performance together with brain activation in a visuospatial task (VST) and a letter detection task (LDT) between longtime action video gamers ( N  =   14) and nongamers ( N  =   14) in order to investigate possible effects of gaming on cognitive and brain abilities. Based on previous research, we expected advantages in performance for experienced action video gamers accompanied by less activation (due to higher efficiency) as measured by fMRI in the frontoparietal attention network. Contrary to these expectations, we did not find differences in overall task performance, nor in brain activation during the VST. We identified, however, a significantly different increase in the BOLD signal from a baseline task to the LDT in action video gamers compared with nongamers. This increased activation was evident in a number of frontoparietal regions including the left middle paracingulate cortex, the left superior frontal sulcus, the opercular part of the left inferior frontal gyrus, and the left and right posterior parietal cortex. Furthermore, we found increased activation in the triangular part of the left inferior frontal gyrus in gamers relative to nongamers when activation during the LDT was compared with activation during the VST. In sum, the expected positive relation between action video game experience and cognitive performance could not be confirmed. Despite their comparable task performance, however, gamers and nongamers exhibited clear-cut differences in brain activation patterns presumably reflecting differences in neural engagement, especially during verbal cognitive tasks.

  1. Effects of a Cognitively Demanding Aerobic Intervention During Recess on Children's Physical Fitness and Executive Functioning

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    van der Niet, Anneke G.; Smith, Joanne; Oosterlaan, Jaap; Scherder, Erik J. A.; Hartman, Esther; Visscher, Chris

    The objective of this study was to analyze the effects of a physical activity program including both aerobic exercise and cognitively engaging physical activities on children's physical fitness and executive functions. Children from 3 primary schools (aged 8-12 years) were recruited. A

  2. On achieving network throughput demand in cognitive radio-based home area networks

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Sarijari, M.A.B.; Abdullah, M.S.; Janssen, G.J.M.; Van der Veen, A.J.

    2015-01-01

    The growing number of wireless devices for in-house use is causing a more intense use of the spectrum to satisfy the required quality-of-service such as throughput. This has contributed to spectrum scarcity and interference problems particularly in home area networks (HAN). Cognitive radio (CR) has

  3. Stereotype Threat Effects on Learning from a Cognitively Demanding Mathematics Lesson

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lyons, Emily McLaughlin; Simms, Nina; Begolli, Kreshnik N.; Richland, Lindsey E.

    2018-01-01

    Stereotype threat--a situational context in which individuals are concerned about confirming a negative stereotype--is often shown to impact test performance, with one hypothesized mechanism being that cognitive resources are temporarily co-opted by intrusive thoughts and worries, leading individuals to underperform despite high content knowledge…

  4. Inefficient cognitive control in adult ADHD: evidence from trial-by-trial Stroop test and cued task switching performance

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Heuser Isabella

    2007-08-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Contemporary neuropsychological models of ADHD implicate impaired cognitive control as contributing to disorder characteristic behavioral deficiencies and excesses; albeit to varying degrees. While the traditional view of ADHD postulates a core deficiency in cognitive control processes, alternative dual-process models emphasize the dynamic interplay of bottom-up driven factors such as activation, arousal, alerting, motivation, reward and temporal processing with top-down cognitive control. However, neuropsychological models of ADHD are child-based and have yet to undergo extensive empirical scrutiny with respect to their application to individuals with persistent symptoms in adulthood. Furthermore, few studies of adult ADHD samples have investigated two central cognitive control processes: interference control and task-set coordination. The current study employed experimental chronometric Stroop and task switching paradigms to investigate the efficiency of processes involved in interference control and task-set coordination in ADHD adults. Methods 22 adults diagnosed with persistent ADHD (17 males and 22 matched healthy control subjects performed a manual trial-by-trial Stroop color-word test and a blocked explicitly cued task switching paradigm. Performance differences between neutral and incongruent trials of the Stroop task measured interference control. Task switching paradigm manipulations allowed for measurement of transient task-set updating, sustained task-set maintenance, preparatory mechanisms and interference control. Control analyses tested for the specificity of group × condition interactions. Results Abnormal processing of task-irrelevant stimulus features was evident in ADHD group performance on both tasks. ADHD group interference effects on the task switching paradigm were found to be dependent on the time allotted to prepare for an upcoming task. Group differences in sustained task-set maintenance and

  5. Motor-cognitive dual-task performance: effects of a concurrent motor task on distinct components of visual processing capacity

    OpenAIRE

    Künstler, E. C. S.; Finke, K.; Günther, A.; Klingner, C.; Witte, O.; Bublak, P.

    2017-01-01

    Dual tasking, or the simultaneous execution of two continuous tasks, is frequently associated with a performance decline that can be explained within a capacity sharing framework. In this study, we assessed the effects of a concurrent motor task on the efficiency of visual information uptake based on the ‘theory of visual attention’ (TVA). TVA provides parameter estimates reflecting distinct components of visual processing capacity: perceptual threshold, visual processing speed, and visual sh...

  6. Associative false consumer memory: effects of need for cognition and encoding task.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Parker, Andrew; Dagnall, Neil

    2018-04-01

    Two experiments investigated the effects of product-attribute associations on false consumer memory. In both experiments, subjects were presented with sets of related product attributes under incidental encoding conditions. Later, recognition memory was tested with studied attributes, non-studied but associated attributes (critical lures) and non-studied unrelated attributes. In Experiment 1, the effect of Need for Cognition (NFC) was assessed. It was found that individuals high in NFC recognised more presented attributes and falsely recognised more associative critical lures. The increase in both true and associative false memory was accompanied by a greater number of responses that index the retrieval of detailed episodic-like information. Experiment 2, replicated the main findings through an experimental manipulation of the encoding task that required subjects to consider purchase likelihood. Explanations for these findings are considered from the perspective of activation processes and knowledge structures in the form of gist-based representations.

  7. Neuroticism, intelligence, and intra-individual variability in elementary cognitive tasks: testing the mental noise hypothesis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Colom, Roberto; Quiroga, Ma Angeles

    2009-08-01

    Some studies show positive correlations between intraindividual variability in elementary speed measures (reflecting processing efficiency) and individual differences in neuroticism (reflecting instability in behaviour). The so-called neural noise hypothesis assumes that higher levels of noise are related both to smaller indices of processing efficiency and greater levels of neuroticism. Here, we test this hypothesis measuring mental speed by means of three elementary cognitive tasks tapping similar basic processes but varying systematically their content (verbal, numerical, and spatial). Neuroticism and intelligence are also measured. The sample comprised 196 undergraduate psychology students. The results show that (1) processing efficiency is generally unrelated to individual differences in neuroticism, (2) processing speed and efficiency correlate with intelligence, and (3) only the efficiency index is genuinely related to intelligence when the colinearity between speed and efficiency is controlled.

  8. Cognitive Impairments and Depressive Symptoms Did Not Impede Upper Extremity Recovery in a Clinical Repetitive Task Practice Prog