Sample records for human cognitive performance

  1. Psychological biases affecting human cognitive performance in dynamic operational environments

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Takano, Kenichi; Reason, J.


    In order to identify cognitive error mechanisms observed in the dynamic operational environment, the following materials were analyzed giving special attention to psychological biases, together with possible cognitive tasks and these location, and internal and external performance shaping factors: (a) 13 human factors analyses of US nuclear power plant accidents, (b) 14 cases of Japanese nuclear power plant incidents, and (c) 23 cases collected in simulator experiments. In the resulting analysis, the most frequently identified cognitive process associated with error productions was situation assessment, and following varieties were KB processes and response planning, all of that were the higher cognitive activities. Over 70% of human error cases, psychological bias was affecting to cognitive errors, especially those to higher cognitive activities. In addition, several error occurrence patterns, including relations between cognitive process, biases, and PSFs were identified by the multivariate analysis. According to the identified error patterns, functions that an operator support system have to equip were discussed and specified for design base considerations. (author)

  2. Cognition and procedure representational requirements for predictive human performance models (United States)

    Corker, K.


    Models and modeling environments for human performance are becoming significant contributors to early system design and analysis procedures. Issues of levels of automation, physical environment, informational environment, and manning requirements are being addressed by such man/machine analysis systems. The research reported here investigates the close interaction between models of human cognition and models that described procedural performance. We describe a methodology for the decomposition of aircrew procedures that supports interaction with models of cognition on the basis of procedures observed; that serves to identify cockpit/avionics information sources and crew information requirements; and that provides the structure to support methods for function allocation among crew and aiding systems. Our approach is to develop an object-oriented, modular, executable software representation of the aircrew, the aircraft, and the procedures necessary to satisfy flight-phase goals. We then encode in a time-based language, taxonomies of the conceptual, relational, and procedural constraints among the cockpit avionics and control system and the aircrew. We have designed and implemented a goals/procedures hierarchic representation sufficient to describe procedural flow in the cockpit. We then execute the procedural representation in simulation software and calculate the values of the flight instruments, aircraft state variables and crew resources using the constraints available from the relationship taxonomies. The system provides a flexible, extensible, manipulative and executable representation of aircrew and procedures that is generally applicable to crew/procedure task-analysis. The representation supports developed methods of intent inference, and is extensible to include issues of information requirements and functional allocation. We are attempting to link the procedural representation to models of cognitive functions to establish several intent inference methods

  3. Human cognition

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Norman, D.A.


    The study of human cognition encompasses the study of all mental phenomena, from the receipt and interpretation of sensory information to the final control of the motor system in the performance of action. The cognitive scientist examines all intermediary processes, including thought, decision making, and memory and including the effects of motivation, states of arousal and stress, the study of language, and the effects of social factors. The field therefore ranges over an enormous territory, covering all that is known or that should be known about human behavior. It is not possible to summarize the current state of knowledge about cognition with any great confidence that we know the correct answer about any aspect of the work. Nontheless, models provide good characterizations of certain aspects of the data and situations. Even if these models should prove to be incorrect, they do provide good approximate descriptions of people's behavior in some situations, and these approximations will still apply even when the underlying theories have changed. A quick description is provided of models within a number of areas of human cognition and skill and some general theoretical frameworks with which to view human cognition. The frameworks are qualitative descriptions that provide a way to view the development of more detailed, quantitative models and, most important, a way of thinking about human performance and skill


    Federal Laboratory Consortium — This laboratory conducts basic and applied human research studies to characterize cognitive performance as influenced by militarily-relevant contextual and physical...

  5. The largest human cognitive performance dataset reveals insights into the effects of lifestyle factors and aging

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Daniel A Sternberg


    Full Text Available Making new breakthroughs in understanding the processes underlying human cognition may depend on the availability of very large datasets that have not historically existed in psychology and neuroscience. Lumosity is a web-based cognitive training platform that has grown to include over 600 million cognitive training task results from over 35 million individuals, comprising the largest existing dataset of human cognitive performance. As part of the Human Cognition Project, Lumosity’s collaborative research program to understand the human mind, Lumos Labs researchers and external research collaborators have begun to explore this dataset in order uncover novel insights about the correlates of cognitive performance. This paper presents two preliminary demonstrations of some of the kinds of questions that can be examined with the dataset. The first example focuses on replicating known findings relating lifestyle factors to baseline cognitive performance in a demographically diverse, healthy population at a much larger scale than has previously been available. The second example examines a question that would likely be very difficult to study in laboratory-based and existing online experimental research approaches: specifically, how learning ability for different types of cognitive tasks changes with age. We hope that these examples will provoke the imagination of researchers who are interested in collaborating to answer fundamental questions about human cognitive performance.

  6. Effects of low-dose recombinant human erythropoietin treatment on cognitive performance

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Viuff, Søren Lundgaard; Plenge, Ulla; Belhage, Bo


    , NUFI or self-reported results between the groups. CONCLUSIONS: In this small study, we found no significant effect of low-dose or micro-dose rhEpo on visual attention, cognitive performance in complex cognitive tasks or self-experienced cognitive performance compared with placebo. FUNDING: The Aase......INTRODUCTION: High-dose recombinant human erythropoietin (rhEpo) has been shown to improve cognitive performance in both healthy volunteers and in patients suffering from diseases affecting the brain. The aim of this study was to examine whether administration of low-dose and even micro-dose rh...

  7. Effects of low-dose recombinant human erythropoietin treatment on cognitive performance

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Viuff, Søren Lundgaard; Plenge, Ulla; Belhage, Bo


    -reported results between the groups. Conclusions: In this small study, we found no significant effect of low-dose or micro-dose rhEpo on visual attention, cognitive performance in complex cognitive tasks or self-experienced cognitive performance compared with placebo. Funding: The Aase and Ejnar Danielsen......Introduction: High-dose recombinant human erythropoietin (rhEpo) has been shown to improve cognitive performance in both healthy volunteers and in patients suffering from diseases affecting the brain. The aim of this study was to examine whether administration of low-dose and even micro-dose rh...

  8. Functional relations and cognitive psychology: Lessons from human performance and animal research. (United States)

    Proctor, Robert W; Urcuioli, Peter J


    We consider requirements for effective interdisciplinary communication and explore alternative interpretations of "building bridges between functional and cognitive psychology." If the bridges are intended to connect radical behaviourism and cognitive psychology, or functional contextualism and cognitive psychology, the efforts are unlikely to be successful. But if the bridges are intended to connect functional relationships and cognitive theory, no construction is needed because the bridges already exist within cognitive psychology. We use human performance and animal research to illustrate the latter point and to counter the claim that the functional approach is unique in offering a close relationship between science and practice. Effective communication will be enhanced and, indeed, may only occur if the goal of functional contextualism extends beyond just "the advancement of functional contextual cognitive and behavioral science and practice" to "the advancement of cognitive and behavioral science and practice" without restriction. © 2015 International Union of Psychological Science.

  9. The cognitive environment simulation as a tool for modeling human performance and reliability

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Woods, D.D.; Pople, H. Jr.


    Various studies have shown that intention errors, or cognitive error, are a major contributor to the risk of disaster. Intention formation refers to the cognitive processes by which an agent decides on what actions are appropriate to carry out (information gathering, situation assessment, diagnosis, response selection). Understanding, measuring, predicting and correcting cognitive errors depends on the answers to the question - what are difficult problems? The answer to this question defines what are risky situations from the point of view of what incidents will the human-technical system manage safely and what incidents will the human-technical system manage poorly and evolve towards negative outcomes. The authors have made progress in the development of such measuring devices through an NRC sponsored research program on cognitive modeling of operator performance. The approach is based on the demand-resource match view of human error. In this approach the difficulty of a problem depends on both the nature of the problem itself and on the resources (e.g., knowledge, plans) available to solve the problem. One can test the difficulty posed by a domain incident, given some set of resources by running the incident through a cognitive simulation that carries out the cognitive activities of a limited resource problem solver in a dynamic, uncertain, risky and highly doctrinal (pre-planned routines and procedures) world. The cognitive simulation that they have developed to do this in NPP accidents is called the Cognitive Environment Simulation (CES). They will illustrate the power of this approach by comparing the behavior of operators in variants on a simulated accident to the behavior of CES in the same accidents

  10. Cognitive and tactile factors affecting human haptic performance in later life.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Tobias Kalisch

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: Vision and haptics are the key modalities by which humans perceive objects and interact with their environment in a target-oriented manner. Both modalities share higher-order neural resources and the mechanisms required for object exploration. Compared to vision, the understanding of haptic information processing is still rudimentary. Although it is known that haptic performance, similar to many other skills, decreases in old age, the underlying mechanisms are not clear. It is yet to be determined to what extent this decrease is related to the age-related loss of tactile acuity or cognitive capacity. METHODOLOGY/PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: We investigated the haptic performance of 81 older adults by means of a cross-modal object recognition test. Additionally, we assessed the subjects' tactile acuity with an apparatus-based two-point discrimination paradigm, and their cognitive performance by means of the non-verbal Raven-Standard-Progressive matrices test. As expected, there was a significant age-related decline in performance on all 3 tests. With the exception of tactile acuity, this decline was found to be more distinct in female subjects. Correlation analyses revealed a strong relationship between haptic and cognitive performance for all subjects. Tactile performance, on the contrary, was only significantly correlated with male subjects' haptic performance. CONCLUSIONS: Haptic object recognition is a demanding task in old age, especially when it comes to the exploration of complex, unfamiliar objects. Our data support a disproportionately higher impact of cognition on haptic performance as compared to the impact of tactile acuity. Our findings are in agreement with studies reporting an increase in co-variation between individual sensory performance and general cognitive functioning in old age.

  11. The cognitive environment simulation as a tool for modeling human performance and reliability

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Woods, D.D.; Pople, H. Jr.; Roth, E.M.


    The US Nuclear Regulatory Commission is sponsoring a research program to develop improved methods to model the cognitive behavior of nuclear power plant (NPP) personnel. Under this program, a tool for simulating how people form intentions to act in NPP emergency situations was developed using artificial intelligence (AI) techniques. This tool is called Cognitive Environment Simulation (CES). The Cognitive Reliability Assessment Technique (or CREATE) was also developed to specify how CBS can be used to enhance the measurement of the human contribution to risk in probabilistic risk assessment (PRA) studies. The next step in the research program was to evaluate the modeling tool and the method for using the tool for Human Reliability Analysis (HRA) in PRAs. Three evaluation activities were conducted. First, a panel of highly distinguished experts in cognitive modeling, AI, PRA and HRA provided a technical review of the simulation development work. Second, based on panel recommendations, CES was exercised on a family of steam generator tube rupture incidents where empirical data on operator performance already existed. Third, a workshop with HRA practitioners was held to analyze a worked example of the CREATE method to evaluate the role of CES/CREATE in HRA. The results of all three evaluations indicate that CES/CREATE represents a promising approach to modeling operator intention formation during emergency operations

  12. Stress, Cognition, and Human Performance: A Literature Review and Conceptual Framework (United States)

    Staal, Mark A.


    The following literature review addresses the effects of various stressors on cognition. While attempting to be as inclusive as possible, the review focuses its examination on the relationships between cognitive appraisal, attention, memory, and stress as they relate to information processing and human performance. The review begins with an overview of constructs and theoretical perspectives followed by an examination of effects across attention, memory, perceptual-motor functions, judgment and decision making, putative stressors such as workload, thermals, noise, and fatigue and closes with a discussion of moderating variables and related topics. In summation of the review, a conceptual framework for cognitive process under stress has been assembled. As one might imagine, the research literature that addresses stress, theories governing its effects on human performance, and experimental evidence that supports these notions is large and diverse. In attempting to organize and synthesize this body of work, I was guided by several earlier efforts (Bourne & Yaroush, 2003; Driskell, Mullen, Johnson, Hughes, & Batchelor, 1992; Driskell & Salas, 1996; Haridcock & Desmond, 2001; Stokes & Kite, 1994). These authors should be credited with accomplishing the monumental task of providing focused reviews in this area and their collective efforts laid the foundation for this present review. Similarly, the format of this review has been designed in accordance with these previous exemplars. However, each of these previous efforts either simply reported general findings, without sufficient experimental illustration, or narrowed their scope of investigation to the extent that the breadth of such findings remained hidden from the reader. Moreover, none of these examinations yielded an architecture that adequately describes or explains the inter-relations between information processing elements under stress conditions.

  13. Collection of human reaction times and supporting health related data for analysis of cognitive and physical performance

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Petr Brůha


    Full Text Available Smoking, excessive drinking, overeating and physical inactivity are well-established risk factors decreasing human physical performance. Moreover, epidemiological work has identified modifiable lifestyle factors, such as poor diet and physical and cognitive inactivity that are associated with the risk of reduced cognitive performance. Definition, collection and annotation of human reaction times and suitable health related data and metadata provides researchers with a necessary source for further analysis of human physical and cognitive performance. The collection of human reaction times and supporting health related data was obtained from two groups comprising together 349 people of all ages - the visitors of the Days of Science and Technology 2016 held on the Pilsen central square and members of the Mensa Czech Republic visiting the neuroinformatics lab at the University of West Bohemia. Each provided dataset contains a complete or partial set of data obtained from the following measurements: hands and legs reaction times, color vision, spirometry, electrocardiography, blood pressure, blood glucose, body proportions and flexibility. It also provides a sufficient set of metadata (age, gender and summary of the participant's current life style and health to allow researchers to perform further analysis. This article has two main aims. The first aim is to provide a well annotated collection of human reaction times and health related data that is suitable for further analysis of lifestyle and human cognitive and physical performance. This data collection is complemented with a preliminarily statistical evaluation. The second aim is to present a procedure of efficient acquisition of human reaction times and supporting health related data in non-lab and lab conditions. Keywords: Reaction time, Health related data, Cognitive and physical performance, Chronic disease, Data acquisition, Data collection, Software for data collection

  14. Insights into Working Memory from The Perspective of The EPIC Architecture for Modeling Skilled Perceptual-Motor and Cognitive Human Performance

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Kieras, David


    Computational modeling of human perceptual-motor and cognitive performance based on a comprehensive detailed information- processing architecture leads to new insights about the components of working memory...

  15. A functional MiR-124 binding-site polymorphism in IQGAP1 affects human cognitive performance.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Lixin Yang

    Full Text Available As a product of the unique evolution of the human brain, human cognitive performance is largely a collection of heritable traits. Rather surprisingly, to date there have been no reported cases to highlight genes that underwent adaptive evolution in humans and which carry polymorphisms that have a marked effect on cognitive performance. IQ motif containing GTPase activating protein 1 (IQGAP1, a scaffold protein, affects learning and memory in a dose-dependent manner. Its expression is regulated by miR-124 through the binding sites in the 3'UTR, where a SNP (rs1042538 exists in the core-binding motif. Here we showed that this SNP can influence the miR-target interaction both in vitro and in vivo. Individuals carrying the derived T alleles have higher IQGAP1 expression in the brain as compared to the ancestral A allele carriers. We observed a significant and male-specific association between rs1042538 and tactile performances in two independent cohorts. Males with the derived allele displayed higher tactual performances as compared to those with the ancestral allele. Furthermore, we found a highly diverged allele-frequency distribution of rs1042538 among world human populations, likely caused by natural selection and/or recent population expansion. These results suggest that current human populations still carry sequence variations that affect cognitive performances and that these genetic variants may likely have been subject to comparatively recent natural selection.

  16. Quantitative developments in the cognitive reliability and error analysis method (CREAM) for the assessment of human performance

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Marseguerra, Marzio; Zio, Enrico; Librizzi, Massimo


    The current 'second generation' approaches in human reliability analysis focus their attention on the contextual conditions under which a given action is performed rather than on the notion of inherent human error probabilities, as was done in the earlier 'first generation' techniques. Among the 'second generation' methods, this paper considers the Cognitive Reliability and Error Analysis Method (CREAM) and proposes some developments with respect to a systematic procedure for computing probabilities of action failure. The starting point for the quantification is a previously introduced fuzzy version of the CREAM paradigm which is here further extended to include uncertainty on the qualification of the conditions under which the action is performed and to account for the fact that the effects of the common performance conditions (CPCs) on performance reliability may not all be equal. By the proposed approach, the probability of action failure is estimated by rating the performance conditions in terms of their effect on the action

  17. Cognitive demand of human sensorimotor performance during an extended space mission: a dual-task study. (United States)

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


    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.

  18. Social cognition in humans

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Frith, Christopher; Frith, Uta


    We review a diversity of studies of human social interaction and highlight the importance of social signals. We also discuss recent findings from social cognitive neuroscience that explore the brain basis of the capacity for processing social signals. These signals enable us to learn about...

  19. Humans Integrate Monetary and Liquid Incentives to Motivate Cognitive Task Performance

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Debbie Marianne Yee


    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.

  20. Humans Integrate Monetary and Liquid Incentives to Motivate Cognitive Task Performance (United States)

    Yee, Debbie M.; Krug, Marie K.; Allen, Ariel Z.; Braver, Todd S.


    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

  1. Human reasoning and cognitive science

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Stenning, K.; van Lambalgen, M.


    In Human Reasoning and Cognitive Science, Keith Stenning and Michiel van Lambalgen—a cognitive scientist and a logician—argue for the indispensability of modern mathematical logic to the study of human reasoning. Logic and cognition were once closely connected, they write, but were "divorced" in the

  2. Enhancing Human-Machine System Performance by Introducing Artificial Cognition in Vehicle Guidance Work Systems (United States)


    evaluated after each mission using the NASA - TLX method [21]. Moreover, they were interviewed to be able to state problems and suggest system...France, 3 rd -4 th September 2008. [21] Sandra G. Hart & Lowell E. Staveland (1988). Development of NASA - TLX (Task Load Index): Results of...o b s e rv a b le b e h a v io u r o f C P = A C U b e h a v io u r Interpretation Figure 11: The Cognitive Process for generating knowledge

  3. 21st Century Human Performance. (United States)

    Clark, Ruth Colvin


    Technology can extend human memory and improve performance, but bypassing human intelligence has its dangers. Cognitive apprenticeships that compress learning experiences, provide coaching, and allow trial and error can build complex problem-solving skills and develop expertise. (SK)

  4. Mesocortical dopaminergic function and human cognition

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Weinberger, D.R.; Berman, K.F.; Chase, T.N.


    In summary, we have reviewed rCBF data in humans that suggest that mesoprefrontal dopaminergic activity is involved in human cognition. In patients with Parkinson's disease and possibly in patients with schizophrenia, prefrontal physiological activation during a cognitive task that appears to depend on prefrontal neural systems correlates positively with cognitive performance on the task and with clinical signs of dopaminergic function. It may be possible in the future to examine prefrontal dopamine metabolism directly during prefrontal cognition using positron emission tomography and tracers such as F-18 DOPA. 21 references

  5. Cognitive performance modeling based on general systems performance theory. (United States)

    Kondraske, George V


    General Systems Performance Theory (GSPT) was initially motivated by problems associated with quantifying different aspects of human performance. It has proved to be invaluable for measurement development and understanding quantitative relationships between human subsystem capacities and performance in complex tasks. It is now desired to bring focus to the application of GSPT to modeling of cognitive system performance. Previous studies involving two complex tasks (i.e., driving and performing laparoscopic surgery) and incorporating measures that are clearly related to cognitive performance (information processing speed and short-term memory capacity) were revisited. A GSPT-derived method of task analysis and performance prediction termed Nonlinear Causal Resource Analysis (NCRA) was employed to determine the demand on basic cognitive performance resources required to support different levels of complex task performance. This approach is presented as a means to determine a cognitive workload profile and the subsequent computation of a single number measure of cognitive workload (CW). Computation of CW may be a viable alternative to measuring it. Various possible "more basic" performance resources that contribute to cognitive system performance are discussed. It is concluded from this preliminary exploration that a GSPT-based approach can contribute to defining cognitive performance models that are useful for both individual subjects and specific groups (e.g., military pilots).

  6. Optimizing Cognitive Performance: The Relationship of Self-Theory to the Human Dimension Concept (United States)


    Newman , he states that “emotional intelligence is positively correlated with performance for high emotional labor jobs.”62 In a summary study of most...individual commanders, leaders, administrators, teachers, and others to include self-theory within their individual curriculums, teaching styles , and...society, where grandparents, parents , and children are students together. In a time of drastic change it is the learners who inherit the future. The

  7. Enhancing Human Cognition with Cocoa Flavonoids

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Valentina Socci


    Full Text Available Enhancing cognitive abilities has become a fascinating scientific challenge, recently driven by the interest in preventing age-related cognitive decline and sustaining normal cognitive performance in response to cognitively demanding environments. In recent years, cocoa and cocoa-derived products, as a rich source of flavonoids, mainly the flavanols sub-class, have been clearly shown to exert cardiovascular benefits. More recently, neuromodulation and neuroprotective actions have been also suggested. Here, we discuss human studies specifically aimed at investigating the effects of acute and chronic administration of cocoa flavanols on different cognitive domains, such as executive functions, attention and memory. Through a variety of direct and indirect biological actions, in part still speculative, cocoa and cocoa-derived food have been suggested to possess the potential to counteract cognitive decline and sustain cognitive abilities, particularly among patients at risk. Although still at a preliminary stage, research investigating the relations between cocoa and cognition shows dose-dependent improvements in general cognition, attention, processing speed, and working memory. Moreover, cocoa flavanols administration could also enhance normal cognitive functioning and exert a protective role on cognitive performance and cardiovascular function specifically impaired by sleep loss, in healthy subjects. Together, these findings converge at pointing to cocoa as a new interesting nutraceutical tool to protect human cognition and counteract different types of cognitive decline, thus encouraging further investigations. Future research should include complex experimental designs combining neuroimaging techniques with physiological and behavioral measures to better elucidate cocoa neuromodulatory properties and directly compare immediate versus long-lasting cognitive effects.

  8. Cognitive performance after ischaemic stroke

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Maria Gabriela R. Ferreira

    Full Text Available Cognitive impairment after stroke affects the patient recovery process. Therefore, the identification of factors associated with cognitive outcomes is important since it allows risk profiles of stroke survivors to be determined. OBJECTIVE: To assess cognitive outcome of stroke outpatients and investigate associations among clinical and demographic variables, vascular risk factors, depression symptoms and functional ability; and to describe the neuropsychological profile of these patients. METHODS: A cross-sectional design study was conducted. Subjects who suffered a first-ever ischaemic stroke 6 to 10 months prior to data collection underwent neuropsychological assessment and screening for depressive symptoms and functional ability. The outcome "cognitive performance" was analyzed considering two groups: "cognitive impairment" and "no cognitive impairment". RESULTS: There was a statistically significant association between cognitive impairment and female gender, age, stroke severity and functional ability. Regarding neuropsychological profile, the cognitive impairment group exhibited more generalized deficits in attention, visuospatial organization, verbal functions and verbal memory domains compared to the community control group. CONCLUSION: The occurrence of cognitive impairment among patients was high, especially in women, older participants, individuals with more severe stroke, and greater impairment in functional ability. Multiple cognitive domains are affected and this may hamper recovery and negatively impact independence and quality of life after stroke.

  9. Cognitive environment simulation: An artificial intelligence system for human performance assessment: Cognitive reliability analysis technique: [Technical report, May 1986-June 1987

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Woods, D.D.; Roth, E.M.


    This report documents the results of Phase II of a three phase research program to develop and validate improved methods to model the cognitive behavior of nuclear power plant (NPP) personnel. In Phase II a dynamic simulation capability for modeling how people form intentions to act in NPP emergency situations was developed based on techniques from artificial intelligence. This modeling tool, Cognitive Environment Simulation or CES, simulates the cognitive processes that determine situation assessment and intention formation. It can be used to investigate analytically what situations and factors lead to intention failures, what actions follow from intention failures (e.g., errors of omission, errors of commission, common mode errors), the ability to recover from errors or additional machine failures, and the effects of changes in the NPP person-machine system. The Cognitive Reliability Assessment Technique (or CREATE) was also developed in Phase II to specify how CES can be used to enhance the measurement of the human contribution to risk in probabilistic risk assessment (PRA) studies. 34 refs., 7 figs., 1 tab

  10. Cognitive Performance in Operational Environments (United States)

    Russo, Michael; McGhee, James; Friedler, Edna; Thomas, Maria


    Optimal cognition during complex and sustained operations is a critical component for success in current and future military operations. "Cognitive Performance, Judgment, and Decision-making" (CPJD) is a newly organized U.S. Army Medical Research and Materiel Command research program focused on sustaining operational effectiveness of Future Force Warriors by developing paradigms through which militarily-relevant, higher-order cognitive performance, judgment, and decision-making can be assessed and sustained in individuals, small teams, and leaders of network-centric fighting units. CPJD evaluates the impact of stressors intrinsic to military operational environments (e.g., sleep deprivation, workload, fatigue, temperature extremes, altitude, environmental/physiological disruption) on military performance, evaluates noninvasive automated methods for monitoring and predicting cognitive performance, and investigates pharmaceutical strategies (e.g., stimulant countermeasures, hypnotics) to mitigate performance decrements. This manuscript describes the CPJD program, discusses the metrics utilized to relate militarily applied research findings to academic research, and discusses how the simulated combat capabilities of a synthetic battle laboratory may facilitate future cognitive performance research.

  11. Background music and cognitive performance. (United States)

    Angel, Leslie A; Polzella, Donald J; Elvers, Greg C


    The present experiment employed standardized test batteries to assess the effects of fast-tempo music on cognitive performance among 56 male and female university students. A linguistic processing task and a spatial processing task were selected from the Criterion Task Set developed to assess verbal and nonverbal performance. Ten excerpts from Mozart's music matched for tempo were selected. Background music increased the speed of spatial processing and the accuracy of linguistic processing. The findings suggest that background music can have predictable effects on cognitive performance.

  12. Human mobility, cognition and GISc

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Welcome to Human Mobility, Cognition and GISc’ - a conference hosted by the University of Copenhagen on November 9, 2015. The present document encloses the abstracts contributed by five invited speakers and eight submitted as responses to a public call made on June 1st 2015. In GIS and related...... the psychological/cognitive and neurophysiological background of our spatial behavior - including our abilities to perceive, memorize, apply and communicate spatial knowledge. It is the aim of the conference to bring together professionals from cognitive, analytical and geo-technical sciences (including...

  13. Cognitive therapy for performance anxiety. (United States)

    Rodebaugh, Thomas L; Chambless, Dianne L


    We present and illustrate the major components of cognitive therapy for performance anxiety, focusing on the performance fears of a client treated with a protocol designed for social phobia. The basic supposition of cognitive theory is that a client's thoughts and beliefs about situations maintain distressing feelings, such as anxiety. Changing these beliefs involves detection and disputation of anxiety-provoking thoughts, as well as testing of these thoughts through exposure to feared situations. Through a process of identifying existing beliefs about performance situations and challenging these beliefs, clients can gain a more realistic and less anxiety-producing perspective on performance tasks. Specific techniques, along with common difficulties and potential solutions, are presented in a detailed case study. Copyright 2004 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  14. Cognitive environment simulation: An artificial intelligence system for human performance assessment: Modeling human intention formation: [Technical report, May 1986-June 1987

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Woods, D.D.; Roth, E.M.; Pople, H. Jr.


    This report documents the results of Phase II of a three phase research program to develop and validate improved methods to model the cognitive behavior of nuclear power plant (NPP) personnel. In Phase II a dynamic simulation capability for modeling how people form intentions to act in NPP emergency situations was developed based on techniques from artificial intelligence. This modeling tool, Cognitive Environment Simulation or CES, simulates the cognitive processes that determine situation assessment and intention formation. It can be used to investigate analytically what situations and factors lead to intention failures, what actions follow from intention failures (e.g., errors of omission, errors of commission, common mode errors), the ability to recover from errors or additional machine failures, and the effects of changes in the NPP person-machine system. The Cognitive Reliability Assessment Technique (or CREATE) was also developed in Phase II to specify how CES can be used to enhance the measurement of the human contribution to risk in probabilistic risk assessment (PRA) studies. 43 refs., 20 figs., 1 tab

  15. The Degree of Radiation-Induced DNA Strand Breaks Is Altered by Acute Sleep Deprivation and Psychological Stress and Is Associated with Cognitive Performance in Humans. (United States)

    Moreno-Villanueva, Maria; von Scheven, Gudrun; Feiveson, Alan; Bürkle, Alexander; Wu, Honglu; Goel, Namni


    Sleep deprivation is associated with impaired immune responses, cancer, and morbidity and mortality, and can degrade cognitive performance, although individual differences exist in such responses. Sleep deprivation induces DNA strand breaks and DNA base oxidation in animals, and psychological stress is associated with increased DNA damage in humans. It remains unknown whether sleep deprivation or psychological stress in humans affects DNA damage response from environmental stressors, and whether these responses predict cognitive performance during sleep deprivation. Sixteen healthy adults (ages 29-52;mean age±SD, 36.4±7.1 years;7 women) participated in a 5-day experiment involving two 8 hour time-in-bed [TIB] baseline nights, followed by 39 hours total sleep deprivation (TSD), and two 8-10 hour TIB recovery nights. A modified Trier Social Stress Test was conducted on the day after TSD. Psychomotor Vigilance Tests measured behavioral attention. DNA damage was assessed in blood cells collected at 5 time points, and blood cells were irradiated ex-vivo. TSD, alone or in combination with psychological stress, did not induce significant increases in DNA damage. By contrast, radiation-induced DNA damage decreased significantly in response to TSD, but increased back to baseline when combined with psychological stress. Cognitively-vulnerable individuals had more radiation-induced DNA strand breaks before TSD, indicating their greater sensitivity to DNA damage from environmental stressors. Our results provide novel insights into the molecular consequences of sleep deprivation, psychological stress, and performance vulnerability. They are important for situations involving sleep loss, radiation exposure and cognitive deficits, including cancer therapy, environmental toxicology, and space medicine.

  16. Cognitive performance and aphasia recovery. (United States)

    Fonseca, José; Raposo, Ana; Martins, Isabel Pavão


    Objectives This study assessed cognitive performance of subjects with aphasia during the acute stage of stroke and evaluated how such performance relates to recovery at 3 months. Materials & methods Patients with aphasia following a left hemisphere stroke were evaluated during the first (baseline) and the fourth-month post onset. Assessment comprised non-verbal tests of attention/processing speed (Symbol Search, Cancelation Task), executive functioning (Matrix Reasoning, Tower of Hanoi, Clock Drawing, Motor Initiative), semantic (Camel and Cactus Test), episodic and immediate memory (Memory for Faces Test, 5 Objects Memory Test, and Spatial Span. Recovery was measured by the Token Test score at 3 months. The impact of baseline performance on recovery was evaluated by logistic regression adjusting for age, education, severity of aphasia and the Alberta Stroke Program Early CT (ASPECT) score. Results Thirty-nine subjects (with a mean of 66.5 ± 10.6 years of age, 17 men) were included. Average baseline cognitive performance was within normal range in all tests except in memory tests (semantic, episodic and immediate memory) for which scores were ≤-1.5sd. Subjects with poor aphasia recovery (N = 27) were older and had fewer years of formal education but had identical ASPECT score compared to those with favorable recovery. Considering each test individually, the score obtained on the Matrix Reasoning test was the only one to predict aphasia recovery (Exp(B)=24.085 p = 0.038). Conclusions The Matrix Reasoning Test may contribute to predict aphasia recovery. Cognitive performance is a measure of network disruption but may also indicate the availability of recovery strategies.

  17. Cognitive performance in patients with COPD

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Liesker, JJW; Postma, DS; Beukema, RJ; ten Hacken, NHT; van der Molen, T; Riemersma, RA; van Zomeren, EH; Kerstjens, HAM

    Background: Hypoxemic patients with Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD) have impaired cognitive performance. These neuropsychological impairments are related to the degree of hypoxemia. So far, cognitive performance has not been tested in non-hypoxemic patients with COPD. Methods: We

  18. Cognitive performance in elderly women

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Togsverd, Mads; Werge, Thomas M; Tankó, Laszlo B


    Genetic and environmental factors influence cognitive aging. The gene encoding dopamine beta-hydroxylase (DBH) could be one such factor since this hydroxylase converts dopamine to norepinephrine both of which are involved in cognition regulation....

  19. Cognitive performance in elderly women

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Togsverd, Mads; Werge, Thomas M; Tankó, Laszlo B


    Genetic and environmental factors influence cognitive aging. The gene encoding dopamine beta-hydroxylase (DBH) could be one such factor since this hydroxylase converts dopamine to norepinephrine both of which are involved in cognition regulation.......Genetic and environmental factors influence cognitive aging. The gene encoding dopamine beta-hydroxylase (DBH) could be one such factor since this hydroxylase converts dopamine to norepinephrine both of which are involved in cognition regulation....

  20. Research strategies for human performance

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Carlsson, Lennart


    This document reflects basic proposals derived from the discussions and results by the expert group on human performance within the frame of an OECD study on nuclear safety research. Different topics have identified which are herein briefly presented: cognitive models and errors of commission, organizational practices, validation of existing techniques for human reliability analysis, control room design and man-machine interactions, use of simulators, improvement of methods for evaluation of operating experience, safety culture, operator aids, shutdown, decommissioning

  1. Modularity, comparative cognition and human uniqueness. (United States)

    Shettleworth, Sara J


    Darwin's claim 'that the difference in mind between man and the higher animals … is certainly one of degree and not of kind' is at the core of the comparative study of cognition. Recent research provides unprecedented support for Darwin's claim as well as new reasons to question it, stimulating new theories of human cognitive uniqueness. This article compares and evaluates approaches to such theories. Some prominent theories propose sweeping domain-general characterizations of the difference in cognitive capabilities and/or mechanisms between adult humans and other animals. Dual-process theories for some cognitive domains propose that adult human cognition shares simple basic processes with that of other animals while additionally including slower-developing and more explicit uniquely human processes. These theories are consistent with a modular account of cognition and the 'core knowledge' account of children's cognitive development. A complementary proposal is that human infants have unique social and/or cognitive adaptations for uniquely human learning. A view of human cognitive architecture as a mosaic of unique and species-general modular and domain-general processes together with a focus on uniquely human developmental mechanisms is consistent with modern evolutionary-developmental biology and suggests new questions for comparative research.

  2. Human Computer Music Performance


    Dannenberg, Roger B.


    Human Computer Music Performance (HCMP) is the study of music performance by live human performers and real-time computer-based performers. One goal of HCMP is to create a highly autonomous artificial performer that can fill the role of a human, especially in a popular music setting. This will require advances in automated music listening and understanding, new representations for music, techniques for music synchronization, real-time human-computer communication, music generation, sound synt...

  3. Cold acclimation and cognitive performance: A review. (United States)

    Jones, Douglas M; Bailey, Stephen P; Roelands, Bart; Buono, Michael J; Meeusen, Romain


    Athletes, occupational workers, and military personnel experience cold temperatures through cold air exposure or cold water immersion, both of which impair cognitive performance. Prior work has shown that neurophysiological pathways may be sensitive to the effects of temperature acclimation and, therefore, cold acclimation may be a potential strategy to attenuate cold-induced cognitive impairments for populations that are frequently exposed to cold environments. This review provides an overview of studies that examine repeated cold stress, cold acclimation, and measurements of cognitive performance to determine whether or not cold acclimation provides beneficial protection against cold-induced cognitive performance decrements. Studies included in this review assessed cognitive measures of reaction time, attention, logical reasoning, information processing, and memory. Repeated cold stress, with or without evidence of cold acclimation, appears to offer no added benefit of improving cognitive performance. However, research in this area is greatly lacking and, therefore, it is difficult to draw any definitive conclusions regarding the use of cold acclimation to improve cognitive performance during subsequent cold exposures. Given the current state of minimal knowledge on this topic, athletes, occupational workers, and military commands looking to specifically enhance cognitive performance in cold environments would likely not be advised to spend the time and effort required to become acclimated to cold. However, as more knowledge becomes available in this area, recommendations may change. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  4. Mental stress and cognitive performance do not increase overall level of cerebral O2 uptake in humans

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Madsen, P L; Schmidt, J F; Holm, S


    of the Kety-Schmidt technique with 133Xe as the inert gas. Electroencephalographic desynchronization and highly significant increases in plasma catecholamines and heart rate verified that the test measurements were performed during conditions differing distinctly from the resting state. In accordance...

  5. Cognitive maps, spatial abilities and human wayfinding.


    Golledge, Reginald G.; Jacobson, R. Daniel; Kitchin, Rob; Blades, Mark


    In this paper we discuss the relations between cognitive maps, spatial abilities and human wayfinding, particularly in the context of traveling without the use of sight. Initially we discuss the nature of cognitive maps and the process of cognitive mapping as mechanisms for developing person to object (egocentric) and object to object (allocentric) internal representations. Imperfections in encoding either relations can introduce imperfections in representations of environments in memory. Thi...

  6. Classification of cognitive performance in bipolar disorder. (United States)

    Sparding, Timea; Silander, Katja; Pålsson, Erik; Östlind, Josefin; Ekman, Carl Johan; Sellgren, Carl M; Joas, Erik; Hansen, Stefan; Landén, Mikael


    To understand the etiology of cognitive impairment associated with bipolar disorder, we need to clarify potential heterogeneity in cognitive functioning. To this end, we used multivariate techniques to study if the correlation structure of cognitive abilities differs between persons with bipolar disorder and controls. Clinically stable patients with bipolar disorder (type I: n = 64; type II: n = 44) and healthy controls (n = 86) were assessed with a wide range of cognitive tests measuring executive function, speed, memory, and verbal skills. Data were analysed with multivariate techniques. A distinct subgroup (∼30%) could be identified that performed significantly poorer on tests concerning memory function. This cognitive phenotype subgroup did not differ from the majority of bipolar disorder patients with respect to other demographic or clinical characteristics. Whereas the majority of patients performed similar to controls, a subgroup of patients with bipolar disorder differed substantially from healthy controls in the correlation pattern of low-level cognitive abilities. This suggests that cognitive impairment is not a general trait in bipolar disorder but characteristic of a cognitive subgroup. This has important clinical implications for cognitive rehabilitation and remediation.

  7. Cognitive Mentorship: Mediating Protege Performance (United States)


    and a child or adolescent, which is important for personal, emotional , cognitive, and psychological growth (Rhodes, 2002). Academic mentoring...Using mentoring and storytelling to transfer knowledge in the workplace. Journal of management information systems, 18(1), 95-114. Uecker, M. E...Air Force Base, OH. Wyatt, J. C. (2001). Management of explicit and tacit knowledge. JRSM, 94(1), 6-9. Zey, M. G. (1984). The mentor connection

  8. New thinking: the evolution of human cognition. (United States)

    Heyes, Cecilia


    Humans are animals that specialize in thinking and knowing, and our extraordinary cognitive abilities have transformed every aspect of our lives. In contrast to our chimpanzee cousins and Stone Age ancestors, we are complex political, economic, scientific and artistic creatures, living in a vast range of habitats, many of which are our own creation. Research on the evolution of human cognition asks what types of thinking make us such peculiar animals, and how they have been generated by evolutionary processes. New research in this field looks deeper into the evolutionary history of human cognition, and adopts a more multi-disciplinary approach than earlier 'Evolutionary Psychology'. It is informed by comparisons between humans and a range of primate and non-primate species, and integrates findings from anthropology, archaeology, economics, evolutionary biology, neuroscience, philosophy and psychology. Using these methods, recent research reveals profound commonalities, as well striking differences, between human and non-human minds, and suggests that the evolution of human cognition has been much more gradual and incremental than previously assumed. It accords crucial roles to cultural evolution, techno-social co-evolution and gene-culture co-evolution. These have produced domain-general developmental processes with extraordinary power-power that makes human cognition, and human lives, unique.

  9. Spatial cognition in apes and humans. (United States)

    Gentner, Dedre


    The debate on whether language influences cognition is sometimes seen as a simple dichotomy: cognitive development is governed either by innate predispositions or by influences of language and culture. In two recent papers on spatial cognition, Haun and colleagues break new ground in bringing together a comparative cognition approach with a cross-linguistic framework to arrive at a third position: that humans begin with the same spatial reference frames as our near relatives, the great apes, and diverge later owing to the influence of language and culture.

  10. New thinking: the evolution of human cognition


    Heyes, Cecilia


    Humans are animals that specialize in thinking and knowing, and our extraordinary cognitive abilities have transformed every aspect of our lives. In contrast to our chimpanzee cousins and Stone Age ancestors, we are complex political, economic, scientific and artistic creatures, living in a vast range of habitats, many of which are our own creation. Research on the evolution of human cognition asks what types of thinking make us such peculiar animals, and how they have been generated by evolu...

  11. Daytime Sleep Aids and Nighttime Cognitive Performance

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Eddy, Douglas; Barton, Emily; Cardenas, Rebecca; French, Jonathan; Gibbons, John; Hickey, Patrick; Miller, James; Ramsey, Carol; Storm, William


    .... This study compared two doses of the hypnotic zolpidem, two doses of melatonin and placebo for their effects on daytime sleep, on nighttime cognitive performance and on mood in an operationally...

  12. A proper metaphysics for cognitive performance. (United States)

    Van Orden, Guy C; Moreno, Miguel A; Holden, John G


    The general failure to individuate component causes in cognitive performance suggests the need for an alternative metaphysics. The metaphysics of control hierarchy theory accommodates the fact of self-organization in nature and the possibility that intentional actions are self-organized. One key assumption is that interactions among processes dominate their intrinsic dynamics. Scaling relations in response time variability motivate this assumption in cognitive performance.

  13. Computational Modeling of Human Multiple-Task Performance

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Kieras, David E; Meyer, David


    This is the final report for a project that was a continuation of an earlier, long-term project on the development and validation of the EPIC cognitive architecture for modeling human cognition and performance...

  14. Managing human performance

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Bishop, J.; LaRhette, R.


    Evaluating human error or human performance problems and correcting the root causes can help preclude recurrence. The Institute of Nuclear Power Operations (INPO), working with several members and participant utilities in an extended pilot program, has developed a nonpunitive program designed to identify, evaluate, and correct situations that cause human performance errors. The program is called the Human Performance Evaluation System (HPES). Its primary goal is to improve human reliability in overall nuclear plant operations by reducing human error through correction of the conditions that cause the errors. Workers at participating nuclear utilities are encouraged to report their errors and a specially trained plant coordinator investigates and recommends actions to correct the root causes of these errors

  15. Performance Monitoring Techniques Supporting Cognitive Optical Networking

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Caballero Jambrina, Antonio; Borkowski, Robert; Zibar, Darko


    High degree of heterogeneity of future optical networks, such as services with different quality-of-transmission requirements, modulation formats and switching techniques, will pose a challenge for the control and optimization of different parameters. Incorporation of cognitive techniques can help...... to solve this issue by realizing a network that can observe, act, learn and optimize its performance, taking into account end-to-end goals. In this letter we present the approach of cognition applied to heterogeneous optical networks developed in the framework of the EU project CHRON: Cognitive...... Heterogeneous Reconfigurable Optical Network. We focus on the approaches developed in the project for optical performance monitoring, which enable the feedback from the physical layer to the cognitive decision system by providing accurate description of the performance of the established lightpaths....

  16. Managing human performance

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Strucic, M.; Kavsek, D.


    Human performance remains a significant factor for management attention not only from a reactor safety perspective, but also from a financial one. Recent significant events analysis shows that human errors are still dominant causes and contributors to them. An analysis of significant events in nuclear industry occurred through 15-years period revealed that three of four significant events were triggered by human error, although the number of events have dropped by more than a factor of four. A number of human performance breakdowns occurred in the application of errorprevention techniques. These included a lack of pre-job briefs, inadequate turnover of tasks, ineffective use of peer checking, inadequate procedure adherence, and failure to apply a questioning attitude when unexpected changes were encountered in the task. Attempts by the industry to improve human performance have traditionally focused at the worker level. However, human error occurs within the context of the organization, which can either foster or resist human error. The greatest room for improvement lies not only in the continued improvement of front-line worker performance but more so in the identification and elimination of weaknesses in the organizational and managerial domains that contributes to worker performance at the job site. Based on mentioned analysis, other industrial sources and own operating experience, NPP Krsko is paying more attention to improve human performance among own as well as contractor workers. Through series of programs and activities, such as Reactivity Management Program, Safety Culture Program, Self-assessment Program, Corrective Action Program, Plant Performance Monitoring Program, developed in last few years, and through new procedures, written guides and publications, training and management efforts, number of human errors is going to be reduced. Involvement of higher levels of NPP Krsko organization in promotion and use of Human Performance techniques is

  17. Physical exercise and cognitive performance in the elderly: current perspectives

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kirk-Sanchez NJ


    Full Text Available Neva J Kirk-Sanchez,1 Ellen L McGough21Department of Physical Therapy, University of Miami Miller School of Medicine, Miami, FL, USA; 2Department of Rehabilitation Medicine, University of Washington, Seattle, WA, USAAbstract: In an aging population with increasing incidence of dementia and cognitive impairment, strategies are needed to slow age-related decline and reduce disease-related cognitive impairment in older adults. Physical exercise that targets modifiable risk factors and neuroprotective mechanisms may reduce declines in cognitive performance attributed to the normal aging process and protect against changes related to neurodegenerative diseases such as Alzheimer's disease and other types of dementia. In this review we summarize the role of exercise in neuroprotection and cognitive performance, and provide information related to implementation of physical exercise programs for older adults. Evidence from both animal and human studies supports the role of physical exercise in modifying metabolic, structural, and functional dimensions of the brain and preserving cognitive performance in older adults. The results of observational studies support a dose-dependent neuroprotective relationship between physical exercise and cognitive performance in older adults. Although some clinical trials of exercise interventions demonstrate positive effects of exercise on cognitive performance, other trials show minimal to no effect. Although further research is needed, physical exercise interventions aimed at improving brain health through neuroprotective mechanisms show promise for preserving cognitive performance. Exercise programs that are structured, individualized, higher intensity, longer duration, and multicomponent show promise for preserving cognitive performance in older adults.Keywords: aging, neurodegeneration, dementia, brain, physical activity

  18. Cultural Change, Human Activity, and Cognitive Development (United States)

    Gauvain, Mary; Munroe, Robert L.


    Differential cognitive performance across cultural contexts has been a standard result in comparative research. Here we discuss how societal changes occurring when a small-scale traditional community incorporates elements from industrialized society may contribute to cognitive development, and we illustrate this with an analysis of the cognitive…

  19. A randomized control trial to establish the feasibility and safety of rapamycin treatment in an older human cohort: Immunological, physical performance, and cognitive effects. (United States)

    Kraig, Ellen; Linehan, Leslie A; Liang, Hanyu; Romo, Terry Q; Liu, Qianqian; Wu, Yubo; Benavides, Adriana D; Curiel, Tyler J; Javors, Martin A; Musi, Nicolas; Chiodo, Laura; Koek, Wouter; Gelfond, Jonathan A L; Kellogg, Dean L


    Inhibition of the mechanistic target of rapamycin (mTOR) pathway by rapamycin (RAPA), an FDA-approved immunosuppressive drug used as a clinical therapy to prevent solid organ allograft rejection, enhances longevity in mice. Importantly, RAPA was efficacious even when initiated in relatively old animals, suggesting that mTOR inhibition could potentially slow the progression of aging-associated pathologies in older humans (Harrison et al., 2009; Miller et al., 2011). However, the safety and tolerability of RAPA in older human subjects have not yet been demonstrated. Towards this end, we undertook a placebo-controlled pilot study in 25 generally healthy older adults (aged 70-95 years); subjects were randomized to receive either 1 mg RAPA or placebo daily. Although three subjects withdrew, 11 RAPA and 14 controls completed at least 8 weeks of treatment and were included in the analysis. We monitored for changes that would indicate detrimental effects of RAPA treatment on metabolism, including both standard clinical laboratory assays (CBC, CMP, HbA1c) and oral glucose tolerance tests (OGTTs). We also monitored parameters typically associated with aging that could potentially be modified by RAPA; these included cognitive function which was assessed by three different tools: Executive Interview-25 (EXIT25); Saint Louis University Mental Status Exam (SLUMS); and Texas Assessment of Processing Speed (TAPS). In addition, physical performance was measured by handgrip strength and 40-foot timed walks. Lastly, changes in general parameters of healthy immune aging, including serum pro-inflammatory cytokine levels and blood cell subsets, were assessed. Five subjects reported potential adverse side effects; in the RAPA group, these were limited to facial rash (1 subject), stomatitis (1 subject) and gastrointestinal issues (2 subjects) whereas placebo treated subjects only reported stomatitis (1 subject). Although no other adverse events were reported, statistically

  20. Human Performance Evaluation System

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Hardwick, R.J. Jr.


    Operating nuclear power plants requires high standards of performance, extensive training and responsive management. Despite our best efforts inappropriate human actions do occur, but they can be managed. An extensive review of License Event Reports (LERs) was conducted which indicated continual inadequacy in human performance and in evaluation of root causes. Of some 31,000 LERs, about 5,000 or 16% were directly attributable to inappropriate actions. A recent analysis of 87 Significant Event Reports (issued by INPO in 1983) identified inappropriate actions as being the most frequent root cause (44% of the total). A more recent analysis of SERs issued in 1983 and 1984 indicate that 52% of the root causes were attributed to human performance. The Human Performance Evaluation System (HPES) is a comprehensive, coordinated utility/industry system for evaluating and reporting human performance situtations. HPES is a result of the realization that current reporting system provide limited treatment of human performance and rarely provide adequate information about root causes of inappropriate actions by individuals. The HPES was implemented to identify and eliminate root causes of inappropriate actions

  1. Modularity, comparative cognition and human uniqueness


    Shettleworth, Sara J.


    Darwin's claim ‘that the difference in mind between man and the higher animals … is certainly one of degree and not of kind’ is at the core of the comparative study of cognition. Recent research provides unprecedented support for Darwin's claim as well as new reasons to question it, stimulating new theories of human cognitive uniqueness. This article compares and evaluates approaches to such theories. Some prominent theories propose sweeping domain-general characterizations of the difference ...

  2. Human cognitive aging: corriger la fortune? (United States)

    Lindenberger, Ulman


    Human cognitive aging differs between and is malleable within individuals. In the absence of a strong genetic program, it is open to a host of hazards, such as vascular conditions, metabolic syndrome, and chronic stress, but also open to protective and enhancing factors, such as experience-dependent cognitive plasticity. Longitudinal studies suggest that leading an intellectually challenging, physically active, and socially engaged life may mitigate losses and consolidate gains. Interventions help to identify contexts and mechanisms of successful cognitive aging and give science and society a hint about what would be possible if conditions were different. Copyright © 2014, American Association for the Advancement of Science.

  3. Human Performance Event Database

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Trager, E. A.


    The purpose of this paper is to describe several aspects of a Human Performance Event Database (HPED) that is being developed by the Nuclear Regulatory Commission. These include the background, the database structure and basis for the structure, the process for coding and entering event records, the results of preliminary analyses of information in the database, and plans for the future. In 1992, the Office for Analysis and Evaluation of Operational Data (AEOD) within the NRC decided to develop a database for information on human performance during operating events. The database was needed to help classify and categorize the information to help feedback operating experience information to licensees and others. An NRC interoffice working group prepared a list of human performance information that should be reported for events and the list was based on the Human Performance Investigation Process (HPIP) that had been developed by the NRC as an aid in investigating events. The structure of the HPED was based on that list. The HPED currently includes data on events described in augmented inspection team (AIT) and incident investigation team (IIT) reports from 1990 through 1996, AEOD human performance studies from 1990 through 1993, recent NRR special team inspections, and licensee event reports (LERs) that were prepared for the events. (author)

  4. Educational Cognitive Technologies as Human Adaptation Strategies

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Marja Nesterova


    Full Text Available Modernity is characterized by profound changes in all spheres of human life caused by the global transformations on macro and micro levels of social reality. These changes allow us to speak about the present as the era of civilizational transition in the mode of uncertainty. Therefore, this situation demands qualitative transformations of human adaptive strategies and educational technologies accordingly. The dominant role in the dynamics of pedagogics and andragogy’s landscape belongs to transformative learning. The transformative learning theory is considered as the relevant approach to education of the individual, which is able to become an autonomous communicative actor of the social complexity. The article considers the cognitive technologies of social cohesion development and perspectives of their implementation in the educational dimension. In addition to implementing the principles of inclusion, equity in education, an important factor for improving social cohesion, stability and unity of society is the development of cognitive educational technologies. The key factors and foundations for the cognitive educational technologies are transversal competencies. They create the conditions for civil, public dialogue, non-violent type of communication. These “21st century skills” are extremely important for better human adaptation. One of the aspects and roots of social adaptation is social cohesion. Mutual determinations and connections between social cohesion development and transversal competences have been shown. The perspective direction of further researches is to find a methodological base for the further development of cognitive education technologies and platform for realization of innovative services for educational programs. New educational paradigm offers the concept of human adaptation as cognitive effectiveness and how to reach it through educational technologies. The article includes topics of creative thinking, teambuilding

  5. Cognitive correlates of performance in advanced mathematics. (United States)

    Wei, Wei; Yuan, Hongbo; Chen, Chuansheng; Zhou, Xinlin


    Much research has been devoted to understanding cognitive correlates of elementary mathematics performance, but little such research has been done for advanced mathematics (e.g., modern algebra, statistics, and mathematical logic). To promote mathematical knowledge among college students, it is necessary to understand what factors (including cognitive factors) are important for acquiring advanced mathematics. We recruited 80 undergraduates from four universities in Beijing. The current study investigated the associations between students' performance on a test of advanced mathematics and a battery of 17 cognitive tasks on basic numerical processing, complex numerical processing, spatial abilities, language abilities, and general cognitive processing. The results showed that spatial abilities were significantly correlated with performance in advanced mathematics after controlling for other factors. In addition, certain language abilities (i.e., comprehension of words and sentences) also made unique contributions. In contrast, basic numerical processing and computation were generally not correlated with performance in advanced mathematics. Results suggest that spatial abilities and language comprehension, but not basic numerical processing, may play an important role in advanced mathematics. These results are discussed in terms of their theoretical significance and practical implications. ©2011 The British Psychological Society.

  6. Expert music performance: cognitive, neural, and developmental bases. (United States)

    Brown, Rachel M; Zatorre, Robert J; Penhune, Virginia B


    In this chapter, we explore what happens in the brain of an expert musician during performance. Understanding expert music performance is interesting to cognitive neuroscientists not only because it tests the limits of human memory and movement, but also because studying expert musicianship can help us understand skilled human behavior in general. In this chapter, we outline important facets of our current understanding of the cognitive and neural basis for music performance, and developmental factors that may underlie musical ability. We address three main questions. (1) What is expert performance? (2) How do musicians achieve expert-level performance? (3) How does expert performance come about? We address the first question by describing musicians' ability to remember, plan, execute, and monitor their performances in order to perform music accurately and expressively. We address the second question by reviewing evidence for possible cognitive and neural mechanisms that may underlie or contribute to expert music performance, including the integration of sound and movement, feedforward and feedback motor control processes, expectancy, and imagery. We further discuss how neural circuits in auditory, motor, parietal, subcortical, and frontal cortex all contribute to different facets of musical expertise. Finally, we address the third question by reviewing evidence for the heritability of musical expertise and for how expertise develops through training and practice. We end by discussing outlooks for future work. © 2015 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  7. Human Performance and Biosystems (United States)


    Fuel Cells • Artificial Photosynthesis Overview of Topic Areas 3003 Human Performance/Biosystems • Photo-Electro-Magnetic Stimulation of...1) Electronic transport in bacterial nanowires was demonstrated using nanofabrication enabled approaches (2) Identified the biophysical... bacterial nanowires and outer-membrane vesicles enhancing the electron transfer and respiration of individual cells Outlook The first demonstration

  8. Exploring Human Cognition Using Large Image Databases. (United States)

    Griffiths, Thomas L; Abbott, Joshua T; Hsu, Anne S


    Most cognitive psychology experiments evaluate models of human cognition using a relatively small, well-controlled set of stimuli. This approach stands in contrast to current work in neuroscience, perception, and computer vision, which have begun to focus on using large databases of natural images. We argue that natural images provide a powerful tool for characterizing the statistical environment in which people operate, for better evaluating psychological theories, and for bringing the insights of cognitive science closer to real applications. We discuss how some of the challenges of using natural images as stimuli in experiments can be addressed through increased sample sizes, using representations from computer vision, and developing new experimental methods. Finally, we illustrate these points by summarizing recent work using large image databases to explore questions about human cognition in four different domains: modeling subjective randomness, defining a quantitative measure of representativeness, identifying prior knowledge used in word learning, and determining the structure of natural categories. Copyright © 2016 Cognitive Science Society, Inc.

  9. Translating cognition from animals to humans. (United States)

    Keeler, J F; Robbins, T W


    Many clinical disorders, whether neurological (e.g. Alzheimer's disease) or neuropsychiatric (e.g. schizophrenia and depression), exhibit cognitive symptoms that require pharmacological treatment. Cognition is multi-faceted and includes processes of perception, attention, working memory, long-term memory, executive function, language and social cognition. This article reviews how it is feasible to model many aspects of human cognition with the use of appropriate animal models and associated techniques, including the use of computer controlled tests (e.g. touch-screens), for optimising translation of experimental research to the clinic. When investigating clinical disorders, test batteries should aim to profile cognitive function in order to determine which aspects are impaired and which are preserved. In this review we have paid particular attention to the validation of translational methods; this may be done through the application of common theoretical principles, by comparing the effects of psychological manipulations and, wherever feasible, with the demonstration of homologous neural circuitry or equivalent pharmacological actions in the animal and human paradigms. Of particular importance is the use of 'back-translation' to ensure that the animal model has validity, for example, in predicting the effects of therapeutic drugs already found in human studies. It is made clear that the choice of appropriate behavioral tests is an important element of animal models of neuropsychiatric or neurological disorder; however, of course it is also important to select appropriate manipulations, whether genetic, neurodevelopmental, neurotoxic, or pharmacological, for simulating the neural substrates relevant to the disorders that lead to predictable behavioral and cognitive impairments, for optimising the testing of candidate compounds. 2011 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  10. The Effect of Movement on Cognitive Performance

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Raed Mualem


    Full Text Available The study examines the relationship between walking, cognitive, and academic skills. Students from elementary, middle, high school, and college were required to walk for 10 min prior to completing feature detection, Simon-type memory, and mathematical problem-solving tasks. Participants were counterbalanced to remove a time bias. Ten minutes of walking had a significant positive effect on Simon-type memory and critical feature-detection tasks among all age groups. Separately, with mathematical problem-solving ability, higher performing high-school students demonstrated significant positive effects on mathematical reasoning tasks based on the Bloom Taxonomy. However, poorly achieving high-school students performed significantly better than those with higher grades in mathematics on tests of mathematical problem-solving ability based on the Bloom’s Taxonomy. The study indicates that there is justification to employ relatively simple means to effect lifestyle, academic, and cognitive performance.

  11. Effects of Sequences of Cognitions on Group Performance Over Time. (United States)

    Molenaar, Inge; Chiu, Ming Ming


    Extending past research showing that sequences of low cognitions (low-level processing of information) and high cognitions (high-level processing of information through questions and elaborations) influence the likelihoods of subsequent high and low cognitions, this study examines whether sequences of cognitions are related to group performance over time; 54 primary school students (18 triads) discussed and wrote an essay about living in another country (32,375 turns of talk). Content analysis and statistical discourse analysis showed that within each lesson, groups with more low cognitions or more sequences of low cognition followed by high cognition added more essay words. Groups with more high cognitions, sequences of low cognition followed by low cognition, or sequences of high cognition followed by an action followed by low cognition, showed different words and sequences, suggestive of new ideas. The links between cognition sequences and group performance over time can inform facilitation and assessment of student discussions.

  12. Oxytocin, testosterone, and human social cognition. (United States)

    Crespi, Bernard J


    I describe an integrative social-evolutionary model for the adaptive significance of the human oxytocinergic system. The model is based on a role for this hormone in the generation and maintenance of social familiarity and affiliation across five homologous, functionally similar, and sequentially co-opted contexts: mothers with offspring, female and male mates, kin groups, individuals with reciprocity partners, and individuals within cooperating and competing social groups defined by culture. In each situation, oxytocin motivates, mediates and rewards the cognitive and behavioural processes that underlie the formation and dynamics of a more or less stable social group, and promotes a relationship between two or more individuals. Such relationships may be positive (eliciting neurological reward, reducing anxiety and thus indicating fitness-enhancing effects), or negative (increasing anxiety and distress, and thus motivating attempts to alleviate a problematic, fitness-reducing social situation). I also present evidence that testosterone exhibits opposite effects from oxytocin on diverse aspects of cognition and behaviour, most generally by favouring self-oriented, asocial and antisocial behaviours. I apply this model for effects of oxytocin and testosterone to understanding human psychological disorders centrally involving social behaviour. Reduced oxytocin and higher testosterone levels have been associated with under-developed social cognition, especially in autism. By contrast, some combination of oxytocin increased above normal levels, and lower testosterone, has been reported in a notable number of studies of schizophrenia, bipolar disorder and depression, and, in some cases, higher oxytocin involves maladaptively 'hyper-developed' social cognition in these conditions. This pattern of findings suggests that human social cognition and behaviour are structured, in part, by joint and opposing effects of oxytocin and testosterone, and that extremes of such joint

  13. Selective cognitive impairments associated with NMDA receptor blockade in humans. (United States)

    Rowland, Laura M; Astur, Robert S; Jung, Rex E; Bustillo, Juan R; Lauriello, John; Yeo, Ronald A


    Hypofunction of the N-methyl-D-aspartate receptor (NMDAR) may be involved in the pathophysiology of schizophrenia. NMDAR antagonists like ketamine induce schizophrenia-like features in humans. In rodent studies, NMDAR antagonism impairs learning by disrupting long-term potentiation (LTP) in the hippocampus. This study investigated the effects of ketamine on spatial learning (acquisition) vs retrieval in a virtual Morris water task in humans. Verbal fluency, working memory, and learning and memory of verbal information were also assessed. Healthy human subjects participated in this double-blinded, placebo-controlled study. On two separate occasions, ketamine/placebo was administered and cognitive tasks were assessed in association with behavioral ratings. Ketamine impaired learning of spatial and verbal information but retrieval of information learned prior to drug administration was preserved. Schizophrenia-like symptoms were significantly related to spatial and verbal learning performance. Ketamine did not significantly impair attention, verbal fluency, or verbal working memory task performance. Spatial working memory was slightly impaired. In conclusion, these results provide evidence for ketamine's differential impairment of verbal and spatial learning vs retrieval. By using the Morris water task, which is hippocampal-dependent, this study helps bridge the gap between nonhuman animal and human NMDAR antagonism research. Impaired cognition is a core feature of schizophrenia. A better understanding of NMDA antagonism, its physiological and cognitive consequences, may provide improved models of psychosis and cognitive therapeutics.

  14. Circadian rhythms in cognitive performance: implications for neuropsychological assessment

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Valdez P


    Full Text Available Pablo Valdez, Candelaria Ramírez, Aída GarcíaLaboratory of Psychophysiology, School of Psychology, University of Nuevo León, Monterrey, Nuevo León, MéxicoAbstract: Circadian variations have been found in human performance, including the efficiency to execute many tasks, such as sensory, motor, reaction time, time estimation, memory, verbal, arithmetic calculations, and simulated driving tasks. Performance increases during the day and decreases during the night. Circadian rhythms have been found in three basic neuropsychological processes (attention, working memory, and executive functions, which may explain oscillations in the performance of many tasks. The time course of circadian rhythms in cognitive performance may be modified significantly in patients with brain disorders, due to chronotype, age, alterations of the circadian rhythm, sleep deprivation, type of disorder, and medication. This review analyzes the recent results on circadian rhythms in cognitive performance, as well as the implications of these rhythms for the neuropsychological assessment of patients with brain disorders such as traumatic head injury, stroke, dementia, developmental disorders, and psychiatric disorders.Keywords: human circadian rhythms, cognitive performance, neuropsychological assessment, attention, working memory, executive functions

  15. Human cognitive ecology: an instructive framework for comparative primatology. (United States)

    Keller, Janet Dixon


    In this review, research on human cognitive ecology is compared with studies of the cognitive ecologies of apes-especially the common chimpanzee. The objective was to assess the feasibility of extending an activity-theory framework developed in studies of humans to an integrated approach for studying the cognitive accomplishments and skills of other primates living in the wild. Six generalizations were abstracted from studies of humans: 1) Social and material environments are arranged to facilitate production. 2) Human activity is shaped by conceptual and cultural principles that provide underlying logic for working knowledge and practice. 3) Schemata (multimodal, mental representations of procedures, strategies, and techniques) govern performance in a domain. 4) Working knowledge, skills, and social identities are co-constructed in communities of practice. 5) Rehearsal improves skilled performances, from which reputations as well as material products are derived. 6) Planning and emergence are in productive tension in human practices. These generalizations are applied to findings in the literature regarding the behavior of chimpanzees and other apes in the wild to assess the potential utility of a situated-activity approach for comparative studies of primate cognition. It is argued in the Discussion that schemata constitute a common core of higher primate intelligence. Planning, emergence, and alterations of the environment to facilitate production further characterize human and chimpanzee or gorilla behaviors to varying degrees. Less apparent in the nonhuman-primate literature is evidence of governing principles, rehearsal, and skill-based reputations or identities entailing theories of mind. Nonetheless, recent observations in the wild suggest that further research is warranted to explore the rudiments of each of these components to enhance our understanding of the ecology of primate cognition and its evolutionary history. Copyright 2004 Wiley-Liss, Inc.

  16. Reciprocal Modulation of Cognitive and Emotional Aspects in Pianistic Performances


    Higuchi, Marcia K. Kodama; Fornari, José; Del Ben, Cristina M.; Graeff, Frederico G.; Leite, João Pereira


    Background: High level piano performance requires complex integration of perceptual, motor, cognitive and emotive skills. Observations in psychology and neuroscience studies have suggested reciprocal inhibitory modulation of the cognition by emotion and emotion by cognition. However, it is still unclear how cognitive states may influence the pianistic performance. The aim of the present study is to verify the influence of cognitive and affective attention in the piano performances. Methods an...

  17. Cognitive intervention with elite performers: reversal theory.


    Kerr, J H


    Noticeable in the literature associated with the application of psychology to the area of sport and sports performance in particular has been the increasing frequency of references to the use of cognitive intervention in the sports context. Currently utilised in clinical psychology and behavioural medicine, and receiving increasing attention in sports psychology, are a number of intervention techniques primarily oriented towards altering the individual's level of arousal. These techniques, wh...

  18. Long-Term Safety of Repeated Blood-Brain Barrier Opening via Focused Ultrasound with Microbubbles in Non-Human Primates Performing a Cognitive Task. (United States)

    Downs, Matthew E; Buch, Amanda; Sierra, Carlos; Karakatsani, Maria Eleni; Teichert, Tobias; Chen, Shangshang; Konofagou, Elisa E; Ferrera, Vincent P


    Focused Ultrasound (FUS) coupled with intravenous administration of microbubbles (MB) is a non-invasive technique that has been shown to reliably open (increase the permeability of) the blood-brain barrier (BBB) in multiple in vivo models including non-human primates (NHP). This procedure has shown promise for clinical and basic science applications, yet the safety and potential neurological effects of long term application in NHP requires further investigation under parameters shown to be efficacious in that species (500 kHz, 200-400 kPa, 4-5 μm MB, 2 minute sonication). In this study, we repeatedly opened the BBB in the caudate and putamen regions of the basal ganglia of 4 NHP using FUS with systemically-administered MB over 4-20 months. We assessed the safety of the FUS with MB procedure using MRI to detect edema or hemorrhaging in the brain. Contrast enhanced T1-weighted MRI sequences showed a 98% success rate for openings in the targeted regions. T2-weighted and SWI sequences indicated a lack edema in the majority of the cases. We investigated potential neurological effects of the FUS with MB procedure through quantitative cognitive testing of' visual, cognitive, motivational, and motor function using a random dot motion task with reward magnitude bias presented on a touchpanel display. Reaction times during the task significantly increased on the day of the FUS with MB procedure. This increase returned to baseline within 4-5 days after the procedure. Visual motion discrimination thresholds were unaffected. Our results indicate FUS with MB can be a safe method for repeated opening of the BBB at the basal ganglia in NHP for up to 20 months without any long-term negative physiological or neurological effects with the parameters used.

  19. Mentoring Human Performance - 12480

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Geis, John A.; Haugen, Christian N. [CALIBRE Systems, Inc., Alexandria, Virginia (United States)


    Although the positive effects of implementing a human performance approach to operations can be hard to quantify, many organizations and industry areas are finding tangible benefits to such a program. Recently, a unique mentoring program was established and implemented focusing on improving the performance of managers, supervisors, and work crews, using the principles of Human Performance Improvement (HPI). The goal of this mentoring was to affect behaviors and habits that reliably implement the principles of HPI to ensure continuous improvement in implementation of an Integrated Safety Management System (ISMS) within a Conduct of Operations framework. Mentors engaged with personnel in a one-on-one, or one-on-many dialogue, which focused on what behaviors were observed, what factors underlie the behaviors, and what changes in behavior could prevent errors or events, and improve performance. A senior management sponsor was essential to gain broad management support. A clear charter and management plan describing the goals, objectives, methodology, and expected outcomes was established. Mentors were carefully selected with senior management endorsement. Mentors were assigned to projects and work teams based on the following three criteria: 1) knowledge of the work scope; 2) experience in similar project areas; and 3) perceived level of trust they would have with project management, supervision, and work teams. This program was restructured significantly when the American Reinvestment and Recovery Act (ARRA) and the associated funding came to an end. The program was restructured based on an understanding of the observations, attributed successes and identified shortfalls, and the consolidation of those lessons. Mentoring the application of proven methods for improving human performance was shown effective at increasing success in day-to-day activities and increasing confidence and level of skill of supervisors. While mentoring program effectiveness is difficult to

  20. Management and human performance

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Russell, W.T.


    Past human performance and management problems have been well documented. The accidents at Three Mile Island and Chernobyl have significant root causes in human factors and in plant management. The failure of plant personnel to recognize the safety significance of their actions, procedures which were knowingly violated, a lack of awareness of plant conditions and status, and operators being misled by incorrect data and information were root causes of these accidents. Safety culture starts with personal dedication and accountability beginning at the top with senior corporate management. It is formed by policies and administrative controls which when implemented ensure that correct practices are followed. Senior management fosters an attitude and safety consciousness in all personnel with responsibility for supervision, operation and maintenance of the nuclear power plant

  1. Investigating the Effects of Different Working Postures on Cognitive Performance

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sharareh Mohammadi


    Conclusion This study demonstrates that cognitive performance is affected by working postures. This study demonstrates that standard sitting posture is the best posture. Therefore, it is recommended that sitting posture can help in increasing cognitive performance in the workplace.

  2. The Effect of Zinc Supplementation on Cognitive Performance in Schoolchildren

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ezzat Khodashenas


    Full Text Available Introduction Zinc is a vital micronutrient in humans and its deficiency in children can thwart their growth and development, compromise their immunity and cognitive function. However, there is a paucity of studies about the effect of zinc supplementation on cognitive functions. This study is an attempt to quantify the impact of zinc supplementation on cognitive performance of schoolchildren. Materials and Methods This randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled field trial was carried out in public elementary school in Mashhad- Iran to investigate the effect of Zinc on cognition of 45 healthy children. The cognitive test used in the trial was Raven IQ (Intelligence Quotient test. A total of 45 first grade children aged 6 to 8 years were enrolled and divided into two experiment and control groups. The cases group, received 20 mg of zinc sulfate syrup vs.  the control group  received a placebo each day for 6 months. Raven IQ test was administered under basal conditions before and after the supplementation of zinc or placebo. Results The memory and intellectual development in the experimental group was significantly more than in the control group (P < 0.05. Conclusion The results of the study demonstrate the positive relationship between zinc administration and some aspects of intellectual development and personality features, emphasizing the significance of this element in the normal psychological status of children.

  3. Mild Cognitive Impairment Status and Mobility Performance

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Pedersen, Mette; Holt, Nicole E; Grande, Laura


    : An analysis was conducted on baseline data from the Boston Rehabilitative Impairment Study in the Elderly study, a cohort study of 430 primary care patients aged 65 or older. Neuropsychological tests identified participants with MCI and further subclassified those with impairment in memory domains (a......BACKGROUND: The prevalence of mild cognitive impairment (MCI) and mobility limitations is high among older adults. The aim of this study was to investigate the association between MCI status and both performance-based and self-report measures of mobility in community-dwelling older adults. METHODS...

  4. Cognitive neuroscience robotics B analytic approaches to human understanding

    CERN Document Server

    Ishiguro, Hiroshi; Asada, Minoru; Osaka, Mariko; Fujikado, Takashi


    Cognitive Neuroscience Robotics is the first introductory book on this new interdisciplinary area. This book consists of two volumes, the first of which, Synthetic Approaches to Human Understanding, advances human understanding from a robotics or engineering point of view. The second, Analytic Approaches to Human Understanding, addresses related subjects in cognitive science and neuroscience. These two volumes are intended to complement each other in order to more comprehensively investigate human cognitive functions, to develop human-friendly information and robot technology (IRT) systems, and to understand what kind of beings we humans are. Volume B describes to what extent cognitive science and neuroscience have revealed the underlying mechanism of human cognition, and investigates how development of neural engineering and advances in other disciplines could lead to deep understanding of human cognition.

  5. Cognition beyond the brain computation, interactivity and human artifice

    CERN Document Server

    Cowley, Stephen J


    Arguing that a collective dimension has given cognitive flexibility to human intelligence, this book shows that traditional cognitive psychology underplays the role of bodies, dialogue, diagrams, tools, talk, customs, habits, computers and cultural practices.

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Alexandra eAntonides


    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.

  7. Very low birth weight piglets show improved cognitive performance in the spatial cognitive holeboard task. (United States)

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


    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.

  8. Pyramid algorithms as models of human cognition (United States)

    Pizlo, Zygmunt; Li, Zheng


    There is growing body of experimental evidence showing that human perception and cognition involves mechanisms that can be adequately modeled by pyramid algorithms. The main aspect of those mechanisms is hierarchical clustering of information: visual images, spatial relations, and states as well as transformations of a problem. In this paper we review prior psychophysical and simulation results on visual size transformation, size discrimination, speed-accuracy tradeoff, figure-ground segregation, and the traveling salesman problem. We also present our new results on graph search and on the 15-puzzle.

  9. Trait Mindfulness and Cognitive Task Performance

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Emalee J. W. Quickel


    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.

  10. Reverse translated and gold standard continuous performance tests predict global cognitive performance in schizophrenia. (United States)

    Bismark, Andrew W; Thomas, Michael L; Tarasenko, Melissa; Shiluk, Alexandra L; Rackelmann, Sonia Y; Young, Jared W; Light, Gregory A


    Attentional dysfunction contributes to functional impairments in schizophrenia (SZ). Sustained attention is typically assessed via continuous performance tasks (CPTs), though many CPTs have limited cross-species translational validity and place demands on additional cognitive domains. A reverse-translated 5-Choice Continuous Performance Task (5C-CPT) for human testing-originally developed for use in rodents-was designed to minimize demands on perceptual, visual learning, processing speed, or working memory functions. To-date, no studies have validated the 5C-CPT against gold standard attentional measures nor evaluated how 5C-CPT scores relate to cognition in SZ. Here we examined the relationship between the 5C-CPT and the CPT-Identical Pairs (CPT-IP), an established and psychometrically robust measure of vigilance from the MATRICS Consensus Cognitive Battery (MCCB) in a sample of SZ patients (n = 35). Relationships to global and individual subdomains of cognition were also assessed. 5C-CPT and CPT-IP measures of performance (d-prime) were strongly correlated (r = 0.60). In a regression model, the 5C-CPT and CPT-IP collectively accounted for 54% of the total variance in MCCB total scores, and 27.6% of overall cognitive variance was shared between the 5C-CPT and CPT-IP. These results indicate that the reverse translated 5C-CPT and the gold standard CPT-IP index a common attentional construct that also significantly overlaps with variance in general cognitive performance. The use of simple, cross-species validated behavioral indices of attentional/cognitive functioning such as the 5C-CPT could accelerate the development of novel generalized pro-cognitive therapeutics for SZ and related neuropsychiatric disorders.

  11. Disentangling the Relationship between Hemispheric Asymmetry and Cognitive Performance (United States)

    Hirnstein, Marco; Leask, Stuart; Rose, Jonas; Hausmann, Markus


    It is widely believed that advantages of hemispheric asymmetries originated in better cognitive processing, hence it is often implied that the relationship between hemispheric asymmetry and cognitive performance is linearly positive: the higher the degree of lateralization in a specific cognitive domain, the better the performance in a…

  12. Cognitive performance in both clinical and non-clinical burnout

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Oosterholt, B.G.; Maes, J.H.R.; Linden, D. van der; Verbraak, M.J.P.M.; Kompier, M.A.J.


    Relatively little is known about cognitive performance in burnout. The aim of the present study was to further our knowledge on this topic by examining, in one study, cognitive performance in both clinical and non-clinical burnout while focusing on three interrelated aspects of cognitive

  13. Reciprocal modulation of cognitive and emotional aspects in pianistic performances.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Marcia K Kodama Higuchi

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: High level piano performance requires complex integration of perceptual, motor, cognitive and emotive skills. Observations in psychology and neuroscience studies have suggested reciprocal inhibitory modulation of the cognition by emotion and emotion by cognition. However, it is still unclear how cognitive states may influence the pianistic performance. The aim of the present study is to verify the influence of cognitive and affective attention in the piano performances. METHODS AND FINDINGS: Nine pianists were instructed to play the same piece of music, firstly focusing only on cognitive aspects of musical structure (cognitive performances, and secondly, paying attention solely on affective aspects (affective performances. Audio files from pianistic performances were examined using a computational model that retrieves nine specific musical features (descriptors--loudness, articulation, brightness, harmonic complexity, event detection, key clarity, mode detection, pulse clarity and repetition. In addition, the number of volunteers' errors in the recording sessions was counted. Comments from pianists about their thoughts during performances were also evaluated. The analyses of audio files throughout musical descriptors indicated that the affective performances have more: agogics, legatos, pianos phrasing, and less perception of event density when compared to the cognitive ones. Error analysis demonstrated that volunteers misplayed more left hand notes in the cognitive performances than in the affective ones. Volunteers also played more wrong notes in affective than in cognitive performances. These results correspond to the volunteers' comments that in the affective performances, the cognitive aspects of piano execution are inhibited, whereas in the cognitive performances, the expressiveness is inhibited. CONCLUSIONS: Therefore, the present results indicate that attention to the emotional aspects of performance enhances expressiveness

  14. Reciprocal modulation of cognitive and emotional aspects in pianistic performances. (United States)

    Higuchi, Marcia K Kodama; Fornari, José; Del Ben, Cristina M; Graeff, Frederico G; Leite, João Pereira


    High level piano performance requires complex integration of perceptual, motor, cognitive and emotive skills. Observations in psychology and neuroscience studies have suggested reciprocal inhibitory modulation of the cognition by emotion and emotion by cognition. However, it is still unclear how cognitive states may influence the pianistic performance. The aim of the present study is to verify the influence of cognitive and affective attention in the piano performances. Nine pianists were instructed to play the same piece of music, firstly focusing only on cognitive aspects of musical structure (cognitive performances), and secondly, paying attention solely on affective aspects (affective performances). Audio files from pianistic performances were examined using a computational model that retrieves nine specific musical features (descriptors)--loudness, articulation, brightness, harmonic complexity, event detection, key clarity, mode detection, pulse clarity and repetition. In addition, the number of volunteers' errors in the recording sessions was counted. Comments from pianists about their thoughts during performances were also evaluated. The analyses of audio files throughout musical descriptors indicated that the affective performances have more: agogics, legatos, pianos phrasing, and less perception of event density when compared to the cognitive ones. Error analysis demonstrated that volunteers misplayed more left hand notes in the cognitive performances than in the affective ones. Volunteers also played more wrong notes in affective than in cognitive performances. These results correspond to the volunteers' comments that in the affective performances, the cognitive aspects of piano execution are inhibited, whereas in the cognitive performances, the expressiveness is inhibited. Therefore, the present results indicate that attention to the emotional aspects of performance enhances expressiveness, but constrains cognitive and motor skills in the piano execution

  15. Glutamate synapses in human cognitive disorders. (United States)

    Volk, Lenora; Chiu, Shu-Ling; Sharma, Kamal; Huganir, Richard L


    Accumulating data, including those from large genetic association studies, indicate that alterations in glutamatergic synapse structure and function represent a common underlying pathology in many symptomatically distinct cognitive disorders. In this review, we discuss evidence from human genetic studies and data from animal models supporting a role for aberrant glutamatergic synapse function in the etiology of intellectual disability (ID), autism spectrum disorder (ASD), and schizophrenia (SCZ), neurodevelopmental disorders that comprise a significant proportion of human cognitive disease and exact a substantial financial and social burden. The varied manifestations of impaired perceptual processing, executive function, social interaction, communication, and/or intellectual ability in ID, ASD, and SCZ appear to emerge from altered neural microstructure, function, and/or wiring rather than gross changes in neuron number or morphology. Here, we review evidence that these disorders may share a common underlying neuropathy: altered excitatory synapse function. We focus on the most promising candidate genes affecting glutamatergic synapse function, highlighting the likely disease-relevant functional consequences of each. We first present a brief overview of glutamatergic synapses and then explore the genetic and phenotypic evidence for altered glutamate signaling in ID, ASD, and SCZ.

  16. A model for assessing human cognitive reliability in PRA studies

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Hannaman, G.W.; Spurgin, A.J.; Lukic, Y.


    This paper summarizes the status of a research project sponsored by EPRI as part of the Probabilistic Risk Assessment (PRA) technology improvement program and conducted by NUS Corporation to develop a model of Human Cognitive Reliability (HCR). The model was synthesized from features identified in a review of existing models. The model development was based on the hypothesis that the key factors affecting crew response times are separable. The inputs to the model consist of key parameters the values of which can be determined by PRA analysts for each accident situation being assessed. The output is a set of curves which represent the probability of control room crew non-response as a function of time for different conditions affecting their performance. The non-response probability is then a contributor to the overall non-success of operating crews to achieve a functional objective identified in the PRA study. Simulator data and some small scale tests were utilized to illustrate the calibration of interim HCR model coefficients for different types of cognitive processing since the data were sparse. The model can potentially help PRA analysts make human reliability assessments more explicit. The model incorporates concepts from psychological models of human cognitive behavior, information from current collections of human reliability data sources and crew response time data from simulator training exercises

  17. Translating Fatigue to Human Performance (United States)

    Enoka, Roger M.; Duchateau, Jacques


    Despite flourishing interest in the topic of fatigue—as indicated by the many presentations on fatigue at the 2015 annual meeting of the American College of Sports Medicine—surprisingly little is known about its impact on human performance. There are two main reasons for this dilemma: (1) the inability of current terminology to accommodate the scope of the conditions ascribed to fatigue, and (2) a paucity of validated experimental models. In contrast to current practice, a case is made for a unified definition of fatigue to facilitate its management in health and disease. Based on the classic two-domain concept of Mosso, fatigue is defined as a disabling symptom in which physical and cognitive function is limited by interactions between performance fatigability and perceived fatigability. As a symptom, fatigue can only be measured by self-report, quantified as either a trait characteristic or a state variable. One consequence of such a definition is that the word fatigue should not be preceded by an adjective (e.g., central, mental, muscle, peripheral, and supraspinal) to suggest the locus of the changes responsible for an observed level of fatigue. Rather, mechanistic studies should be performed with validated experimental models to identify the changes responsible for the reported fatigue. As indicated by three examples (walking endurance in old adults, time trials by endurance athletes, and fatigue in persons with multiple sclerosis) discussed in the review, however, it has proven challenging to develop valid experimental models of fatigue. The proposed framework provides a foundation to address the many gaps in knowledge of how laboratory measures of fatigue and fatigability impact real-world performance. PMID:27015386

  18. Human Performance Research Center (United States)

    Federal Laboratory Consortium — Biochemistry:Improvements in energy metabolism, muscular strength and endurance capacity have a basis in biochemical and molecular adaptations within the human body....

  19. Comparative developmental psychology: how is human cognitive development unique? (United States)

    Rosati, Alexandra G; Wobber, Victoria; Hughes, Kelly; Santos, Laurie R


    The fields of developmental and comparative psychology both seek to illuminate the roots of adult cognitive systems. Developmental studies target the emergence of adult cognitive systems over ontogenetic time, whereas comparative studies investigate the origins of human cognition in our evolutionary history. Despite the long tradition of research in both of these areas, little work has examined the intersection of the two: the study of cognitive development in a comparative perspective. In the current article, we review recent work using this comparative developmental approach to study non-human primate cognition. We argue that comparative data on the pace and pattern of cognitive development across species can address major theoretical questions in both psychology and biology. In particular, such integrative research will allow stronger biological inferences about the function of developmental change, and will be critical in addressing how humans come to acquire species-unique cognitive abilities.

  20. Cognitive Technologies: The Design of Joint Human-Machine Cognitive Systems


    Woods, David D.


    This article explores the implications of one type of cognitive technology, techniques and concepts to develop joint human-machine cognitive systems, for the application of computational technology by examining the joint cognitive system implicit in a hypothetical computer consultant that outputs some form of problem solution. This analysis reveals some of the problems can occur in cognitive system design-e.g., machine control of the interaction, the danger of a responsibility-authority doubl...

  1. Cognitive Emotional Regulation Model in Human-Robot Interaction


    Liu, Xin; Xie, Lun; Liu, Anqi; Li, Dan


    This paper integrated Gross cognitive process into the HMM (hidden Markov model) emotional regulation method and implemented human-robot emotional interaction with facial expressions and behaviors. Here, energy was the psychological driving force of emotional transition in the cognitive emotional model. The input facial expression was translated into external energy by expression-emotion mapping. Robot’s next emotional state was determined by the cognitive energy (the stimulus after cognition...

  2. Selective neuronal lapses precede human cognitive lapses following sleep deprivation. (United States)

    Nir, Yuval; Andrillon, Thomas; Marmelshtein, Amit; Suthana, Nanthia; Cirelli, Chiara; Tononi, Giulio; Fried, Itzhak


    Sleep deprivation is a major source of morbidity with widespread health effects, including increased risk of hypertension, diabetes, obesity, heart attack, and stroke. Moreover, sleep deprivation brings about vehicle accidents and medical errors and is therefore an urgent topic of investigation. During sleep deprivation, homeostatic and circadian processes interact to build up sleep pressure, which results in slow behavioral performance (cognitive lapses) typically attributed to attentional thalamic and frontoparietal circuits, but the underlying mechanisms remain unclear. Recently, through study of electroencephalograms (EEGs) in humans and local field potentials (LFPs) in nonhuman primates and rodents it was found that, during sleep deprivation, regional 'sleep-like' slow and theta (slow/theta) waves co-occur with impaired behavioral performance during wakefulness. Here we used intracranial electrodes to record single-neuron activities and LFPs in human neurosurgical patients performing a face/nonface categorization psychomotor vigilance task (PVT) over multiple experimental sessions, including a session after full-night sleep deprivation. We find that, just before cognitive lapses, the selective spiking responses of individual neurons in the medial temporal lobe (MTL) are attenuated, delayed, and lengthened. These 'neuronal lapses' are evident on a trial-by-trial basis when comparing the slowest behavioral PVT reaction times to the fastest. Furthermore, during cognitive lapses, LFPs exhibit a relative local increase in slow/theta activity that is correlated with degraded single-neuron responses and with baseline theta activity. Our results show that cognitive lapses involve local state-dependent changes in neuronal activity already present in the MTL.

  3. Motivational deficits and cognitive test performance in schizophrenia. (United States)

    Fervaha, Gagan; Zakzanis, Konstantine K; Foussias, George; Graff-Guerrero, Ariel; Agid, Ofer; Remington, Gary


    Motivational and cognitive deficits are core features of schizophrenia, both closely linked with functional outcomes. Although poor effort and decreased motivation are known to affect performance on cognitive tests, the extent of this relationship is unclear in patients with schizophrenia. To evaluate the association between intrinsic motivation and cognitive test performance in patients with schizophrenia. Cross-sectional and 6-month prospective follow-up study performed at 57 sites in the United States, including academic and community medical treatment centers, participating in the Clinical Antipsychotic Trials of Intervention Effectiveness study. The primary sample included 431 stable patients with a DSM-IV diagnosis of schizophrenia currently receiving a stable medication regimen. Cognitive performance and intrinsic motivation were evaluated using a comprehensive neuropsychological test battery and a derived measure from the Heinrichs-Carpenter Quality of Life Scale, respectively. Symptom severity and functional status were also assessed. The primary outcome variable was global neurocognition. Individual domains of cognition were also evaluated for their association with motivation. Level of intrinsic motivation was significantly and positively correlated with global cognitive test performance, a relationship that held for each domain of cognition evaluated (correlation range, 0.20-0.34; P motivation and cognitive performance also remained significant after controlling for antipsychotic dose (P motivation during the 6-month follow-up was also found to be significantly related to improvement in global cognitive performance (P motivation and cognitive performance and suggest that test performance is not purely a measure of ability. Future studies assessing cognition in patients with schizophrenia should consider potential moderating variables such as effort and motivation. Implications for the assessment and interpretation of cognitive impairment based on

  4. Human Performance Westinghouse Program

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Garcia Gutierrez, A.; Gil, C.


    The objective of the Program consists in the excellence actuation, achieving the client success with a perfect realisation project. This program consists of different basic elements to reduce the human mistakes: the HuP tools, coaching, learning clocks and iKnow website. There is, too, a document file to consult and practice. All these elements are expounded in this paper.

  5. Dietary Tyrosine Benefits Cognitive and Psychomotor Performance During Body Cooling

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    O'Brien, Catherine; Mahoney, Caroline; Tharion, William J; Sils, Ingrid V; Castellani, John W


    ... examined. This study evaluated the effect of tyrosine supplementation on cognitive, psychomotor, and physical performance following a cold water immersion protocol that lowered body core temperature...

  6. EVA Health and Human Performance Benchmarking Study (United States)

    Abercromby, A. F.; Norcross, J.; Jarvis, S. L.


    Multiple HRP Risks and Gaps require detailed characterization of human health and performance during exploration extravehicular activity (EVA) tasks; however, a rigorous and comprehensive methodology for characterizing and comparing the health and human performance implications of current and future EVA spacesuit designs does not exist. This study will identify and implement functional tasks and metrics, both objective and subjective, that are relevant to health and human performance, such as metabolic expenditure, suit fit, discomfort, suited postural stability, cognitive performance, and potentially biochemical responses for humans working inside different EVA suits doing functional tasks under the appropriate simulated reduced gravity environments. This study will provide health and human performance benchmark data for humans working in current EVA suits (EMU, Mark III, and Z2) as well as shirtsleeves using a standard set of tasks and metrics with quantified reliability. Results and methodologies developed during this test will provide benchmark data against which future EVA suits, and different suit configurations (eg, varied pressure, mass, CG) may be reliably compared in subsequent tests. Results will also inform fitness for duty standards as well as design requirements and operations concepts for future EVA suits and other exploration systems.

  7. Cognitive neuroscience robotics A synthetic approaches to human understanding

    CERN Document Server

    Ishiguro, Hiroshi; Asada, Minoru; Osaka, Mariko; Fujikado, Takashi


    Cognitive Neuroscience Robotics is the first introductory book on this new interdisciplinary area. This book consists of two volumes, the first of which, Synthetic Approaches to Human Understanding, advances human understanding from a robotics or engineering point of view. The second, Analytic Approaches to Human Understanding, addresses related subjects in cognitive science and neuroscience. These two volumes are intended to complement each other in order to more comprehensively investigate human cognitive functions, to develop human-friendly information and robot technology (IRT) systems, and to understand what kind of beings we humans are. Volume A describes how human cognitive functions can be replicated in artificial systems such as robots, and investigates how artificial systems could acquire intelligent behaviors through interaction with others and their environment.

  8. Modeling cognition and disease using human glial chimeric mice

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Goldman, Steven A.; Nedergaard, Maiken; Windrem, Martha S.


    , oligodendrocytes as well. As a result, the recipient brains may become inexorably humanized with regards to their resident glial populations, yielding human glial chimeric mouse brains. These brains provide us a fundamentally new tool by which to assess the species-specific attributes of glia in modulating human...... for studying the human-specific contributions of glia to psychopathology, as well as to higher cognition. As such, the assessment of human glial chimeric mice may provide us new insight into the species-specific contributions of glia to human cognitive evolution, as well as to the pathogenesis of human...

  9. Effects of Cognitive Load on Driving Performance: The Cognitive Control Hypothesis. (United States)

    Engström, Johan; Markkula, Gustav; Victor, Trent; Merat, Natasha


    The objective of this paper was to outline an explanatory framework for understanding effects of cognitive load on driving performance and to review the existing experimental literature in the light of this framework. Although there is general consensus that taking the eyes off the forward roadway significantly impairs most aspects of driving, the effects of primarily cognitively loading tasks on driving performance are not well understood. Based on existing models of driver attention, an explanatory framework was outlined. This framework can be summarized in terms of the cognitive control hypothesis: Cognitive load selectively impairs driving subtasks that rely on cognitive control but leaves automatic performance unaffected. An extensive literature review was conducted wherein existing results were reinterpreted based on the proposed framework. It was demonstrated that the general pattern of experimental results reported in the literature aligns well with the cognitive control hypothesis and that several apparent discrepancies between studies can be reconciled based on the proposed framework. More specifically, performance on nonpracticed or inherently variable tasks, relying on cognitive control, is consistently impaired by cognitive load, whereas the performance on automatized (well-practiced and consistently mapped) tasks is unaffected and sometimes even improved. Effects of cognitive load on driving are strongly selective and task dependent. The present results have important implications for the generalization of results obtained from experimental studies to real-world driving. The proposed framework can also serve to guide future research on the potential causal role of cognitive load in real-world crashes.

  10. Research opportunities in human behavior and performance (United States)

    Christensen, J. M. (Editor); Talbot, J. M. (Editor)


    Extant information on the subject of psychological aspects of manned space flight are reviewed; NASA's psychology research program is examined; significant gaps in knowledge are identified; and suggestions are offered for future research program planning. Issues of human behavior and performance related to the United States space station, to the space shuttle program, and to both near and long term problems of a generic nature in applicable disciplines of psychology are considered. Topics covered include: (1) human performance requirements for a 90 day mission; (2) human perceptual, cognitive, and motor capabilities and limitations in space; (3) crew composition, individual competencies, crew competencies, selection criteria, and special training; (4) environmental factors influencing behavior; (5) psychosocial aspects of multiperson space crews in long term missions; (6) career determinants in NASA; (7) investigational methodology and equipment; and (8) psychological support.

  11. Deconstructing and Reconstructing Cognitive Performance in Sleep Deprivation (United States)

    Jackson, Melinda L.; Gunzelmann, Glenn; Whitney, Paul; Hinson, John M.; Belenky, Gregory; Rabat, Arnaud; Van Dongen, Hans P. A.


    Summary Mitigation of cognitive impairment due to sleep deprivation in operational settings is critical for safety and productivity. Achievements in this area are hampered by limited knowledge about the effects of sleep loss on actual job tasks. Sleep deprivation has different effects on different cognitive performance tasks, but the mechanisms behind this task-specificity are poorly understood. In this context it is important to recognize that cognitive performance is not a unitary process, but involves a number of component processes. There is emerging evidence that these component processes are differentially affected by sleep loss. Experiments have been conducted to decompose sleep-deprived performance into underlying cognitive processes using cognitive-behavioral, neuroimaging and cognitive modeling techniques. Furthermore, computational modeling in cognitive architectures has been employed to simulate sleep-deprived cognitive performance on the basis of the constituent cognitive processes. These efforts are beginning to enable quantitative prediction of the effects of sleep deprivation across different task contexts. This paper reviews a rapidly evolving area of research, and outlines a theoretical framework in which the effects of sleep loss on cognition may be understood from the deficits in the underlying neurobiology to the applied consequences in real-world job tasks. PMID:22884948

  12. The Effect of Colour on Children's Cognitive Performance (United States)

    Brooker, Alice; Franklin, Anna


    Background: The presence of red appears to hamper adults' cognitive performance relative to other colours (see Elliot & Maier, 2014, "Ann. Rev. Psychol." 65, 95). Aims and sample: Here, we investigate whether colour affects cognitive performance in 8- and 9-year-olds. Method: Children completed a battery of tasks once in the presence…

  13. The importance of motivation and emotion for explaining human cognition. (United States)

    Güss, C Dominik; Dörner, Dietrich


    Lake et al. discuss building blocks of human intelligence that are quite different from those of artificial intelligence. We argue that a theory of human intelligence has to incorporate human motivations and emotions. The interaction of motivation, emotion, and cognition is the real strength of human intelligence and distinguishes it from artificial intelligence.

  14. Cognitive Neuroscience of Human Counterfactual Reasoning

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Nicole eVan Hoeck


    Full Text Available Counterfactual reasoning is a hallmark of human thought, enabling the capacity to shift from perceiving the immediate environment to an alternative, imagined perspective. Mental representations of counterfactual possibilities (e.g., imagined past events or future outcomes not yet at hand provide the basis for learning from past experience, enable planning and prediction, support creativity and insight, and give rise to emotions and social attributions (e.g., regret and blame. Yet remarkably little is known about the psychological and neural foundations of counterfactual reasoning. In this review, we survey recent findings from psychology and neuroscience indicating that counterfactual thought depends on an integrative network of systems for affective processing, mental simulation, and cognitive control. We review evidence to elucidate how these mechanisms are systematically altered through psychiatric illness and neurological disease. We propose that counterfactual thinking depends on the coordination of multiple information processing systems that together enable adaptive behavior and goal-directed decision making and make recommendations for the study of counterfactual inference in health, aging, and disease.

  15. Human Performance Investigation Process (HPIP)

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Paradies, M.; Unger, L.


    The Human Performance Investigation Process (HPIP) is a systematic method for use by Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) personnel investigating incidents that include human error. The combination of techniques into an investigation procedure is designed to help investigators (for example, a typical resident inspector with little human factors training) find the root causes of human performance problems that contributed to the incident. This summary briefly outlines the process and the techniques. The full paper provides a more in-depth description of the process, the techniques, and their development and evaluation. The complete documentation of the process will be presented in NUREG/CR-5455, Development of the NRC Human Performance Investigation Process (HPIP) to be published late in 1991

  16. Circadian Rhythms, Sleep Deprivation, and Human Performance (United States)

    Goel, Namni; Basner, Mathias; Rao, Hengyi; Dinges, David F.


    Much of the current science on, and mathematical modeling of, dynamic changes in human performance within and between days is dominated by the two-process model of sleep–wake regulation, which posits a neurobiological drive for sleep that varies homeostatically (increasing as a saturating exponential during wakefulness and decreasing in a like manner during sleep), and a circadian process that neurobiologically modulates both the homeostatic drive for sleep and waking alertness and performance. Endogenous circadian rhythms in neurobehavioral functions, including physiological alertness and cognitive performance, have been demonstrated using special laboratory protocols that reveal the interaction of the biological clock with the sleep homeostatic drive. Individual differences in circadian rhythms and genetic and other components underlying such differences also influence waking neurobehavioral functions. Both acute total sleep deprivation and chronic sleep restriction increase homeostatic sleep drive and degrade waking neurobehavioral functions as reflected in sleepiness, attention, cognitive speed, and memory. Recent evidence indicating a high degree of stability in neurobehavioral responses to sleep loss suggests that these trait-like individual differences are phenotypic and likely involve genetic components, including circadian genes. Recent experiments have revealed both sleep homeostatic and circadian effects on brain metabolism and neural activation. Investigation of the neural and genetic mechanisms underlying the dynamically complex interaction between sleep homeostasis and circadian systems is beginning. A key goal of this work is to identify biomarkers that accurately predict human performance in situations in which the circadian and sleep homeostatic systems are perturbed. PMID:23899598

  17. Bridging Human Reliability Analysis and Psychology, Part 2: A Cognitive Framework to Support HRA

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    April M. Whaley; Stacey M. L. Hendrickson; Ronald L. Boring; Jing Xing


    This is the second of two papers that discuss the literature review conducted as part of the U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) effort to develop a hybrid human reliability analysis (HRA) method in response to Staff Requirements Memorandum (SRM) SRM-M061020. This review was conducted with the goal of strengthening the technical basis within psychology, cognitive science and human factors for the hybrid HRA method being proposed. An overview of the literature review approach and high-level structure is provided in the first paper, whereas this paper presents the results of the review. The psychological literature review encompassed research spanning the entirety of human cognition and performance, and consequently produced an extensive list of psychological processes, mechanisms, and factors that contribute to human performance. To make sense of this large amount of information, the results of the literature review were organized into a cognitive framework that identifies causes of failure of macrocognition in humans, and connects those proximate causes to psychological mechanisms and performance influencing factors (PIFs) that can lead to the failure. This cognitive framework can serve as a tool to inform HRA. Beyond this, however, the cognitive framework has the potential to also support addressing human performance issues identified in Human Factors applications.

  18. Physical Performance Is Associated with Working Memory in Older People with Mild to Severe Cognitive Impairment

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Volkers, K. M.; Scherder, E. J. A.


    Background. Physical performances and cognition are positively related in cognitively healthy people. The aim of this study was to examine whether physical performances are related to specific cognitive functioning in older people with mild to severe cognitive impairment. Methods. This

  19. Gender Differences in Human Cognition. Counterpoints: Cognition, Memory, and Language Series. (United States)

    Caplan, Paula J.; Crawford, Mary; Hyde, Janet Shibley; Richardson, John T. E.

    Noting the fascination of both researchers and the general public with possible gender differences in human cognition and whether these differences originate in biology, childhood influences, or cultural stereotypes, this book summarizes research studies on gender differences in cognition. The book examines social and cultural implications of this…

  20. A Cross-Cultural Investigation of Human Performance Technology Interventions (United States)

    Vadivelu, Ramaswamy N.


    Human Performance Technology (HPT) is a field of practice that has evolved from advancements in organizational development, instructional design, strategic human resource management and cognitive psychology. As globalization and trends like outsourcing and off-shoring start to dominate the way organizations grow, HPT practitioners are managing the…

  1. Human performance models for computer-aided engineering (United States)

    Elkind, Jerome I. (Editor); Card, Stuart K. (Editor); Hochberg, Julian (Editor); Huey, Beverly Messick (Editor)


    This report discusses a topic important to the field of computational human factors: models of human performance and their use in computer-based engineering facilities for the design of complex systems. It focuses on a particular human factors design problem -- the design of cockpit systems for advanced helicopters -- and on a particular aspect of human performance -- vision and related cognitive functions. By focusing in this way, the authors were able to address the selected topics in some depth and develop findings and recommendations that they believe have application to many other aspects of human performance and to other design domains.

  2. Association between osteocalcin and cognitive performance in healthy older adults

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Bradburn, Steven; Mcphee, Jamie S.; Bagley, Liam; Sipila, Sarianna; Stenroth, Lauri; Narici, Marco Vincenzo; Pääsuke, Mati; Gapeyeva, Helena; Osborne, Gabrielle; Sassano, Lorraine; Meskers, Carel G.M.; Maier, Andrea B.; Hogrel, Jean Yves; Barnouin, Yoann; Butler-Browne, Gillian; Murgatroyd, Chris


    Introduction: cognitive deterioration and reductions of bone health coincide with increasing age. We examine the relationship between bone composition and plasma markers of bone remodelling with measures of cognitive performance in healthy adults. Methods: this cross-sectional study included 225 old

  3. Relationship between mode of sport training and general cognitive performance

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Erik Chih-Hung Chang


    Conclusion: These findings indicate that the mode of sport training, which results in either high cardiovascular or high motor fitness, bears no relationship to measures of general cognition in elite athletes. The present findings suggest that coaches and athletic trainers should be encouraged to monitor athletes' stress levels during training in order to maximize the beneficial effects of such training on general cognitive performance.

  4. Eyewitness performance in cognitive and structured interviews. (United States)

    Memon, A; Wark, L; Holley, A; Bull, R; Koehnken, G


    This paper addresses two methodological and theoretical questions relating to the Cognitive Interview (CI), which previous research has found to increase witness recall in interviews. (1) What are the effects of the CI mnemonic techniques when communication techniques are held constant? (2) How do trained interviewers compare with untrained interviewers? In this study, witnesses (college students) viewed a short film clip of a shooting and were questioned by interviewers (research assistants) trained in conducting the CI or a Structured Interview (SI)--similar to the CI except for the "cognitive" components--or by untrained interviewers (UI). The CI and SI groups recalled significantly more correct information compared to the UI group. However they also reported more errors and confabulated details. Theoretical and practical implications of the results are discussed in terms of precisely identifying the CI facilitatory effects and consequent good practice in the forensic setting.

  5. Default, Cognitive, and Affective Brain Networks in Human Tinnitus (United States)


    AWARD NUMBER: W81XWH-13-1-0491 TITLE: Default, Cognitive, and Affective Brain Networks in Human Tinnitus PRINCIPAL INVESTIGATOR: Jennifer R...SUBTITLE 5a. CONTRACT NUMBER Default, Cognitive and Affective Brain Networks in Human Tinnitus 5b. GRANT NUMBER 5c. PROGRAM ELEMENT NUMBER 6...Release; Distribution Unlimited 13. SUPPLEMENTARY NOTES 14. ABSTRACT Tinnitus is a major health problem among those currently and formerly in military

  6. Can training improve human performance

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Waylett, W.J. Jr.


    The nuclear industry has made a significant commitment to improve training through the implementation of performance-based training programs. Senior management expects that human performance improvement will result from this significant resource allocation. The author examines this hypothesis and discusses other issues that may interfere with enhancing human performance through training. The integration of quality improvement concepts to support training is also discussed by the author, who was a pioneer facilitator during the development of Florida Power and Light Company's Quality Improvement Program. Critical success factors are proposed based on the author's experience as a plant manager, training manager and quality facilitator

  7. Embodied artificial agents for understanding human social cognition. (United States)

    Wykowska, Agnieszka; Chaminade, Thierry; Cheng, Gordon


    In this paper, we propose that experimental protocols involving artificial agents, in particular the embodied humanoid robots, provide insightful information regarding social cognitive mechanisms in the human brain. Using artificial agents allows for manipulation and control of various parameters of behaviour, appearance and expressiveness in one of the interaction partners (the artificial agent), and for examining effect of these parameters on the other interaction partner (the human). At the same time, using artificial agents means introducing the presence of artificial, yet human-like, systems into the human social sphere. This allows for testing in a controlled, but ecologically valid, manner human fundamental mechanisms of social cognition both at the behavioural and at the neural level. This paper will review existing literature that reports studies in which artificial embodied agents have been used to study social cognition and will address the question of whether various mechanisms of social cognition (ranging from lower- to higher-order cognitive processes) are evoked by artificial agents to the same extent as by natural agents, humans in particular. Increasing the understanding of how behavioural and neural mechanisms of social cognition respond to artificial anthropomorphic agents provides empirical answers to the conundrum 'What is a social agent?' © 2016 The Authors.

  8. Cognitive load predicts point-of-care ultrasound simulator performance. (United States)

    Aldekhyl, Sara; Cavalcanti, Rodrigo B; Naismith, Laura M


    The ability to maintain good performance with low cognitive load is an important marker of expertise. Incorporating cognitive load measurements in the context of simulation training may help to inform judgements of competence. This exploratory study investigated relationships between demographic markers of expertise, cognitive load measures, and simulator performance in the context of point-of-care ultrasonography. Twenty-nine medical trainees and clinicians at the University of Toronto with a range of clinical ultrasound experience were recruited. Participants answered a demographic questionnaire then used an ultrasound simulator to perform targeted scanning tasks based on clinical vignettes. Participants were scored on their ability to both acquire and interpret ultrasound images. Cognitive load measures included participant self-report, eye-based physiological indices, and behavioural measures. Data were analyzed using a multilevel linear modelling approach, wherein observations were clustered by participants. Experienced participants outperformed novice participants on ultrasound image acquisition. Ultrasound image interpretation was comparable between the two groups. Ultrasound image acquisition performance was predicted by level of training, prior ultrasound training, and cognitive load. There was significant convergence between cognitive load measurement techniques. A marginal model of ultrasound image acquisition performance including prior ultrasound training and cognitive load as fixed effects provided the best overall fit for the observed data. In this proof-of-principle study, the combination of demographic and cognitive load measures provided more sensitive metrics to predict ultrasound simulator performance. Performance assessments which include cognitive load can help differentiate between levels of expertise in simulation environments, and may serve as better predictors of skill transfer to clinical practice.

  9. Neighborhood Integration and Connectivity Predict Cognitive Performance and Decline

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Amber Watts PhD


    Full Text Available Objective: Neighborhood characteristics may be important for promoting walking, but little research has focused on older adults, especially those with cognitive impairment. We evaluated the role of neighborhood characteristics on cognitive function and decline over a 2-year period adjusting for measures of walking. Method: In a study of 64 older adults with and without mild Alzheimer’s disease (AD, we evaluated neighborhood integration and connectivity using geographical information systems data and space syntax analysis. In multiple regression analyses, we used these characteristics to predict 2-year declines in factor analytically derived cognitive scores (attention, verbal memory, mental status adjusting for age, sex, education, and self-reported walking. Results : Neighborhood integration and connectivity predicted cognitive performance at baseline, and changes in cognitive performance over 2 years. The relationships between neighborhood characteristics and cognitive performance were not fully explained by self-reported walking. Discussion : Clearer definitions of specific neighborhood characteristics associated with walkability are needed to better understand the mechanisms by which neighborhoods may impact cognitive outcomes. These results have implications for measuring neighborhood characteristics, design and maintenance of living spaces, and interventions to increase walking among older adults. We offer suggestions for future research measuring neighborhood characteristics and cognitive function.

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

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Boere, J.J.; Fellinger, L.; Huizinga, D.J.H.; Wong, S.F.; Bijleveld, E.H.


    A prevalent combination in daily life, performance pressure and caffeine intake have both been shown to impact people's cognitive performance. Here, we examined the possibility that pressure and caffeine affect cognitive performance via a shared pathway. In an experiment, participants performed a

  11. Cognitive performance as a zeitgeber: cognitive oscillators and cholinergic modulation of the SCN entrain circadian rhythms.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Howard J Gritton

    Full Text Available The suprachiasmatic nucleus (SCN is the primary circadian pacemaker in mammals that can synchronize or entrain to environmental cues. Although light exerts powerful influences on SCN output, other non-photic stimuli can modulate the SCN as well. We recently demonstrated that daily performance of a cognitive task requiring sustained periods of attentional effort that relies upon basal forebrain (BF cholinergic activity dramatically alters circadian rhythms in rats. In particular, normally nocturnal rats adopt a robust diurnal activity pattern that persists for several days in the absence of cognitive training. Although anatomical and pharmacological data from non-performing animals support a relationship between cholinergic signaling and circadian rhythms, little is known about how endogenous cholinergic signaling influences SCN function in behaving animals. Here we report that BF cholinergic projections to the SCN provide the principal signal allowing for the expression of cognitive entrainment in light-phase trained animals. We also reveal that oscillator(s outside of the SCN drive cognitive entrainment as daily timed cognitive training robustly entrains SCN-lesioned arrhythmic animals. Ablation of the SCN, however, resulted in significant impairments in task acquisition, indicating that SCN-mediated timekeeping benefits new learning and cognitive performance. Taken together, we conclude that cognition entrains non-photic oscillators, and cholinergic signaling to the SCN serves as a temporal timestamp attenuating SCN photic-driven rhythms, thereby permitting cognitive demands to modulate behavior.

  12. Work content influences on cognitive task load, emotional state and performance during a simulated 520-days' Mars mission

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Cohen, I.; Braber, N. den; Smets, N.J.J.M.; Diggelen, J. van; Brinkman, W.P.; Neerincx, M.A.


    In high-risk domains such as human space flight, cognitive performances can be negatively affected by emotional responses to events and conditions in their working environment (e.g., isolation and health incidents). The COgnitive Performance and Error (COPE) model distinguishes effects of work

  13. The Effect Of Stereotype On Cognitive Performance: An ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Gender and Behaviour ... Abstract. This study investigated the effect stereotypes have on cognitive performance. ... Therefore understanding the nature of stereotypes, prejudice, and discrimination is the first step in combating these practices.

  14. How similar are fluid cognition and general intelligence? A developmental neuroscience perspective on fluid cognition as an aspect of human cognitive ability. (United States)

    Blair, Clancy


    This target article considers the relation of fluid cognitive functioning to general intelligence. A neurobiological model differentiating working memory/executive function cognitive processes of the prefrontal cortex from aspects of psychometrically defined general intelligence is presented. Work examining the rise in mean intelligence-test performance between normative cohorts, the neuropsychology and neuroscience of cognitive function in typically and atypically developing human populations, and stress, brain development, and corticolimbic connectivity in human and nonhuman animal models is reviewed and found to provide evidence of mechanisms through which early experience affects the development of an aspect of cognition closely related to, but distinct from, general intelligence. Particular emphasis is placed on the role of emotion in fluid cognition and on research indicating fluid cognitive deficits associated with early hippocampal pathology and with dysregulation of the hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal axis stress-response system. Findings are seen to be consistent with the idea of an independent fluid cognitive construct and to assist with the interpretation of findings from the study of early compensatory education for children facing psychosocial adversity and from behavior genetic research on intelligence. It is concluded that ongoing development of neurobiologically grounded measures of fluid cognitive skills appropriate for young children will play a key role in understanding early mental development and the adaptive success to which it is related, particularly for young children facing social and economic disadvantage. Specifically, in the evaluation of the efficacy of compensatory education efforts such as Head Start and the readiness for school of children from diverse backgrounds, it is important to distinguish fluid cognition from psychometrically defined general intelligence.

  15. Human Resources Key Performance Indicators

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Gabčanová Iveta


    Full Text Available The article brings out a proposed strategy map and respective key performance indicators (KPIs in human resources (HR. The article provides an overview of how HR activities are supported in order to reach the partial goals of HR as defined in the strategic map. Overall the aim of the paper is to show the possibilities of using the modern Balanced Scorecard method in human capital.

  16. Performance evaluation of cognitive radio in advanced metering infrastructure communication (United States)

    Hiew, Yik-Kuan; Mohd Aripin, Norazizah; Din, Norashidah Md


    Smart grid is an intelligent electricity grid system. A reliable two-way communication system is required to transmit both critical and non-critical smart grid data. However, it is difficult to locate a huge chunk of dedicated spectrum for smart grid communications. Hence, cognitive radio based communication is applied. Cognitive radio allows smart grid users to access licensed spectrums opportunistically with the constraint of not causing harmful interference to licensed users. In this paper, a cognitive radio based smart grid communication framework is proposed. Smart grid framework consists of Home Area Network (HAN) and Advanced Metering Infrastructure (AMI), while AMI is made up of Neighborhood Area Network (NAN) and Wide Area Network (WAN). In this paper, the authors only report the findings for AMI communication. AMI is smart grid domain that comprises smart meters, data aggregator unit, and billing center. Meter data are collected by smart meters and transmitted to data aggregator unit by using cognitive 802.11 technique; data aggregator unit then relays the data to billing center using cognitive WiMAX and TV white space. The performance of cognitive radio in AMI communication is investigated using Network Simulator 2. Simulation results show that cognitive radio improves the latency and throughput performances of AMI. Besides, cognitive radio also improves spectrum utilization efficiency of WiMAX band from 5.92% to 9.24% and duty cycle of TV band from 6.6% to 10.77%.

  17. Exceptional evolutionary divergence of human muscle and brain metabolomes parallels human cognitive and physical uniqueness.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Katarzyna Bozek


    Full Text Available Metabolite concentrations reflect the physiological states of tissues and cells. However, the role of metabolic changes in species evolution is currently unknown. Here, we present a study of metabolome evolution conducted in three brain regions and two non-neural tissues from humans, chimpanzees, macaque monkeys, and mice based on over 10,000 hydrophilic compounds. While chimpanzee, macaque, and mouse metabolomes diverge following the genetic distances among species, we detect remarkable acceleration of metabolome evolution in human prefrontal cortex and skeletal muscle affecting neural and energy metabolism pathways. These metabolic changes could not be attributed to environmental conditions and were confirmed against the expression of their corresponding enzymes. We further conducted muscle strength tests in humans, chimpanzees, and macaques. The results suggest that, while humans are characterized by superior cognition, their muscular performance might be markedly inferior to that of chimpanzees and macaque monkeys.

  18. Information processing. [in human performance (United States)

    Wickens, Christopher D.; Flach, John M.


    Theoretical models of sensory-information processing by the human brain are reviewed from a human-factors perspective, with a focus on their implications for aircraft and avionics design. The topics addressed include perception (signal detection and selection), linguistic factors in perception (context provision, logical reversals, absence of cues, and order reversals), mental models, and working and long-term memory. Particular attention is given to decision-making problems such as situation assessment, decision formulation, decision quality, selection of action, the speed-accuracy tradeoff, stimulus-response compatibility, stimulus sequencing, dual-task performance, task difficulty and structure, and factors affecting multiple task performance (processing modalities, codes, and stages).

  19. A machine learning model with human cognitive biases capable of learning from small and biased datasets. (United States)

    Taniguchi, Hidetaka; Sato, Hiroshi; Shirakawa, Tomohiro


    Human learners can generalize a new concept from a small number of samples. In contrast, conventional machine learning methods require large amounts of data to address the same types of problems. Humans have cognitive biases that promote fast learning. Here, we developed a method to reduce the gap between human beings and machines in this type of inference by utilizing cognitive biases. We implemented a human cognitive model into machine learning algorithms and compared their performance with the currently most popular methods, naïve Bayes, support vector machine, neural networks, logistic regression and random forests. We focused on the task of spam classification, which has been studied for a long time in the field of machine learning and often requires a large amount of data to obtain high accuracy. Our models achieved superior performance with small and biased samples in comparison with other representative machine learning methods.

  20. Cognitive Performance in College Women Throughout the Menstrual Cycle

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Fred Gustavo Manrique-Abril


    Full Text Available To determine whether fluctuations of estrogen levels across the menstrual cycle influence cognitive performance, 13 university women between 20 and 23 years old were tested in four cognitive tasks; verbal memory, visuospatial ability, short term memory and visuo-motor coordination, three times across a menstrual cycle. Radioimmunoassay tests were performed in order to determine the hormonal state. Significant differences were not found in visuo-spatial ability and visuo-motor coordination performance, but results suggest a better verbal memory performance associated with high estrogen levels; short term memory performance didn’t show to be sensitive to fluctuations in estrogen levels.

  1. No Effect of Commercial Cognitive Training on Brain Activity, Choice Behavior, or Cognitive Performance. (United States)

    Kable, Joseph W; Caulfield, M Kathleen; Falcone, Mary; McConnell, Mairead; Bernardo, Leah; Parthasarathi, Trishala; Cooper, Nicole; Ashare, Rebecca; Audrain-McGovern, Janet; Hornik, Robert; Diefenbach, Paul; Lee, Frank J; Lerman, Caryn


    Increased preference for immediate over delayed rewards and for risky over certain rewards has been associated with unhealthy behavioral choices. Motivated by evidence that enhanced cognitive control can shift choice behavior away from immediate and risky rewards, we tested whether training executive cognitive function could influence choice behavior and brain responses. In this randomized controlled trial, 128 young adults (71 male, 57 female) participated in 10 weeks of training with either a commercial web-based cognitive training program or web-based video games that do not specifically target executive function or adapt the level of difficulty throughout training. Pretraining and post-training, participants completed cognitive assessments and functional magnetic resonance imaging during performance of the following validated decision-making tasks: delay discounting (choices between smaller rewards now vs larger rewards in the future) and risk sensitivity (choices between larger riskier rewards vs smaller certain rewards). Contrary to our hypothesis, we found no evidence that cognitive training influences neural activity during decision-making; nor did we find effects of cognitive training on measures of delay discounting or risk sensitivity. Participants in the commercial training condition improved with practice on the specific tasks they performed during training, but participants in both conditions showed similar improvement on standardized cognitive measures over time. Moreover, the degree of improvement was comparable to that observed in individuals who were reassessed without any training whatsoever. Commercial adaptive cognitive training appears to have no benefits in healthy young adults above those of standard video games for measures of brain activity, choice behavior, or cognitive performance. SIGNIFICANCE STATEMENT Engagement of neural regions and circuits important in executive cognitive function can bias behavioral choices away from immediate

  2. Does cognitive behavioural therapy for insomnia improve cognitive performance? A systematic review and narrative synthesis. (United States)

    Herbert, Vanessa; Kyle, Simon D; Pratt, Daniel


    Individuals with insomnia report difficulties pertaining to their cognitive functioning. Cognitive behavioural therapy for insomnia (CBT-I) is associated with robust, long-term improvements in sleep parameters, however less is known about the impact of CBT-I on the daytime correlates of the disorder. A systematic review and narrative synthesis was conducted in order to summarise and evaluate the evidence regarding the impact of CBT-I on cognitive functioning. Reference databases were searched and studies were included if they assessed cognitive performance as an outcome of CBT-I, using either self-report questionnaires or cognitive tests. Eighteen studies met inclusion criteria, comprising 923 individuals with insomnia symptoms. The standardised mean difference was calculated at post-intervention and follow-up. We found preliminary evidence for small to moderate effects of CBT-I on subjective measures of cognitive functioning. Few of the effects were statistically significant, likely due to small sample sizes and limited statistical power. There is a lack of evidence with regards to the impact of CBT-I on objective cognitive performance, primarily due to the small number of studies that administered an objective measure (n = 4). We conclude that adequately powered randomised controlled trials, utilising both subjective and objective measures of cognitive functioning are required. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  3. Auditory and cognitive performance in elderly musicians and nonmusicians.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Massimo Grassi

    Full Text Available Musicians represent a model for examining brain and behavioral plasticity in terms of cognitive and auditory profile, but few studies have investigated whether elderly musicians have better auditory and cognitive abilities than nonmusicians. The aim of the present study was to examine whether being a professional musician attenuates the normal age-related changes in hearing and cognition. Elderly musicians still active in their profession were compared with nonmusicians on auditory performance (absolute threshold, frequency intensity, duration and spectral shape discrimination, gap and sinusoidal amplitude-modulation detection, and on simple (short-term memory and more complex and higher-order (working memory [WM] and visuospatial abilities cognitive tasks. The sample consisted of adults at least 65 years of age. The results showed that older musicians had similar absolute thresholds but better supra-threshold discrimination abilities than nonmusicians in four of the six auditory tasks administered. They also had a better WM performance, and stronger visuospatial abilities than nonmusicians. No differences were found between the two groups' short-term memory. Frequency discrimination and gap detection for the auditory measures, and WM complex span tasks and one of the visuospatial tasks for the cognitive ones proved to be very good classifiers of the musicians. These findings suggest that life-long music training may be associated with enhanced auditory and cognitive performance, including complex cognitive skills, in advanced age. However, whether this music training represents a protective factor or not needs further investigation.

  4. Notes on human performance analysis

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Hollnagel, E.; Pedersen, O.M.; Rasmussen, J.


    This paper contains a framework for the integration of observation and analysis of human performance in nuclear environments - real or simulated. It identifies four main sources of data, and describes the characteristic data types and methods of analysis for each source in relation to a common conceptual background. The general conclusion is that it is highly useful to combine the knowledge and experience from different contexts into coherent picture of how nuclear operators perform under varying circumstances. (author)

  5. Adolescent Anorexia Nervosa: cognitive performance after weight recovery. (United States)

    Lozano-Serra, Estefanía; Andrés-Perpiña, Susana; Lázaro-García, Luisa; Castro-Fornieles, Josefina


    Although there is no definitive consensus on the impairment of neuropsychological functions, most studies of adults with Anorexia Nervosa (AN) find impaired functioning in cognitive domains such as visual-spatial abilities. The objective of this study is to assess the cognitive functions in adolescents with AN before and after weight recovery and to explore the relationship between cognitive performance and menstruation. Twenty-five female adolescents with AN were assessed by a neuropsychological battery while underweight and then following six months of treatment and weight recovery. Twenty-six healthy female subjects of a similar age were also evaluated at both time points. Underweight patients with AN showed worse cognitive performance than control subjects in immediate recall, organization and time taken to copy the Rey's Complex Figure Test (RCFT). After weight recovery, AN patients presented significant improvements in all tests, and differences between patients and controls disappeared. Patients with AN and persistence of amenorrhea at follow-up (n=8) performed worse on Block Design, delayed recall of Visual Reproduction and Stroop Test than patients with resumed menstruation (n=14) and the control group, though the two AN groups were similar in body mass index, age and psychopathological scale scores. Weight recovery improves cognitive functioning in adolescents with AN. The normalization of neuropsychological performance is better in patients who have recovered at least one menstrual cycle. The normalization of hormonal function seems to be essential for the normalization of cognitive performance, even in adolescents with a very short recovery time. © 2013.

  6. The Effects of Aerobic Exercise and Gaming on Cognitive Performance

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Douris Peter C.


    Full Text Available The purpose of our study was to investigate the effects of video gaming, aerobic exercise (biking, and the combination of these two activities on the domains of cognitive performance: selective attention, processing speed, and executive functioning. The study was a randomized clinical trial with 40 subjects (mean age 23.7 ± 1.8 years randomized to one of four thirty-minute conditions: video gaming, biking, simultaneous gaming and biking, and a control condition. Cognitive performance was measured pre and post condition using the Stroop test and Trails B test. A mixed design was utilized. While video gaming, biking, simultaneous gaming and biking conditions improved selective attention and processing speed (p < 0.05, only the bike condition improved the highest order of cognitive performance, executive function (p < 0.01. There were no changes in cognitive performance for the control condition. Previous studies have shown that if tasks approach the limits of attentional capacity there is an increase in the overall chance for errors, known as the dual-task deficit. Simultaneous biking and gaming may have surpassed attentional capacity limits, ultimately increasing errors during the executive function tests of our cognitive performance battery. The results suggest that the fatiguing effects of a combined physically and mentally challenging task that extends after the exercise cessation may overcome the eventual beneficial cognitive effects derived from the physical exercise.

  7. Human Resource Management and Performance

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    J.P.P.E.F. Boselie (Paul); J. Paauwe (Jaap); P. Jansen (Paul)


    textabstractThe relationship between Human Resource Management (HRM) and performance of the firm has been a hot debated topic in the field of HRM/IR for the last decade. Most scientific research on this topic originates from the USA. In our paper we will give an overview of recent USA-based research

  8. Molecular networks and the evolution of human cognitive specializations. (United States)

    Fontenot, Miles; Konopka, Genevieve


    Inroads into elucidating the origins of human cognitive specializations have taken many forms, including genetic, genomic, anatomical, and behavioral assays that typically compare humans to non-human primates. While the integration of all of these approaches is essential for ultimately understanding human cognition, here, we review the usefulness of coexpression network analysis for specifically addressing this question. An increasing number of studies have incorporated coexpression networks into brain expression studies comparing species, disease versus control tissue, brain regions, or developmental time periods. A clearer picture has emerged of the key genes driving brain evolution, as well as the developmental and regional contributions of gene expression patterns important for normal brain development and those misregulated in cognitive diseases. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  9. Effects of Motion in the Far Peripheral Visual Field on Cognitive Test Performance and Cognitive Load. (United States)

    Bevilacqua, Andy; Paas, Fred; Krigbaum, Genomary


    Cognitive load theory posits that limited attention is in actuality a limitation in working memory resources. The load theory of selective attention and cognitive control sees the interplay between attention and awareness as separate modifying functions that act on working memory. Reconciling the theoretical differences in these two theories has important implications for learning. Thirty-nine adult participants performed a cognitively demanding test, with and without movement in the far peripheral field. Although the results for movement effects on cognitive load in this experiment were not statistically significant, men spent less time on the cognitive test in the peripheral movement condition than in the conditions without peripheral movement. No such difference was found for women. The implications of these results and recommendations for future research that extends the present study are presented. © The Author(s) 2016.

  10. CAPTCHA Based on Human Cognitive Factor


    Chowdhury, Mohammad Jabed Morshed; Chakraborty, Narayan Ranjan


    A CAPTCHA (Completely Automated Public Turing test to tell Computers and Humans Apart) is an automatic security mechanism used to determine whether the user is a human or a malicious computer program. It is a program that generates and grades tests that are human solvable, but intends to be beyond the capabilities of current computer programs. CAPTCHA should be designed to be very easy for humans but very hard for machines. Unfortunately, the existing CAPTCHA systems while trying to maximize ...

  11. Human Uniqueness, Cognition by Description, and Procedural Memory

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    John Bolender


    Full Text Available Evidence will be reviewed suggesting a fairly direct link between the human ability to think about entities which one has never perceived — here called “cognition by description” — and procedural memory. Cognition by description is a uniquely hominid trait which makes religion, science, and history possible. It is hypothesized that cognition by description (in the manner of Bertrand Russell’s “knowledge by description” requires variable binding, which in turn utilizes quantifier raising. Quantifier raising plausibly depends upon the computational core of language, specifically the element of it which Noam Chomsky calls “internal Merge”. Internal Merge produces hierarchical structures by means of a memory of derivational steps, a process plausibly involving procedural memory. The hypothesis is testable, predicting that procedural memory deficits will be accompanied by impairments in cognition by description. We also discuss neural mechanisms plausibly underlying procedural memory and also, by our hypothesis, cognition by description.

  12. Shift Work and Cognitive Flexibility: Decomposing Task Performance. (United States)

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


    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

  13. Lifetime Occupation and Late-Life Cognitive Performance Among Women. (United States)

    Ribeiro, Pricila Cristina Correa; Lourenço, Roberto Alves


    We examined whether women who had regular jobs throughout life performed better cognitively than older adult housewives. Linear regression was used to compare global cognitive performance scores of housewives (G1) and women exposed to work of low (G2) and high (G3) complexity. The sample comprised 477 older adult Brazilian women, 430 (90.4%) of whom had performed lifelong jobs. In work with data, the G2 group's cognitive performance scores were 1.73 points higher (p =.03), and the G3 group scored 1.76 points (p =.02) higher, than the G1. In work with things and with people, the G3 scored, respectively, 2.04 (p performance in women later in life.

  14. Characterizing Cognitive Aging in Humans with Links to Animal Models

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Gene E Alexander


    Full Text Available With the population of older adults expected to grow rapidly over the next two decades, it has become increasingly important to advance research efforts to elucidate the mechanisms associated with cognitive aging, with the ultimate goal of developing effective interventions and prevention therapies. Although there has been a vast research literature on the use of cognitive tests to evaluate the effects of aging and age-related neurodegenerative disease, the need for a set of standardized measures to characterize the cognitive profiles specific to healthy aging has been widely recognized. Here we present a review of selected methods and approaches that have been applied in human research studies to evaluate the effects of aging on cognition, including executive function, memory, processing speed, language, and visuospatial function. The effects of healthy aging on each of these cognitive domains are discussed with examples from cognitive/experimental and clinical/neuropsychological approaches. Further, we consider those measures that have clear conceptual and methodological links to tasks currently in use for non-human animal studies of aging, as well as those that have the potential for translation to animal aging research. Having a complementary set of measures to assess the cognitive profiles of healthy aging across species provides a unique opportunity to enhance research efforts for cross-sectional, longitudinal, and intervention studies of cognitive aging. Taking a cross-species, translational approach will help to advance cognitive aging research, leading to a greater understanding of associated neurobiological mechanisms with the potential for developing effective interventions and prevention therapies for age-related cognitive decline.

  15. Research strategies for human performance

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)


    Knowledge about factors that influence Human Performance is essential for the safety of nuclear power plant operation. Through a number of tasks, workshops and projects, experience is shared among OECD countries. At its December 1996 meeting, the CSNI endorsed the SESAR/CAF report on 'Nuclear Safety Research in OECD Countries: Capabilities and Facilities' and requested that the Principal Working Groups (PWGs) review existing co-operative programmes and develop specifications for programmes which address the identified needs. Following discussions between the chairmen of these PWGs and the NEA Secretariat, it was concluded that, for this technical area, the development of programme specifications must be preceded by the development of a strategic document that further elaborates the conclusions of the SESAR/CAF report and set out the general orientation of the research over the medium and long term. Accordingly, a group of senior experts met in August 1997 to discuss possible strategies in the area of Human Performance. The objectives of this meeting were: - To exchange information on existing plans and strategies by different Member countries; - To determine relevant issues and realistic medium/long-term targets and expectations for their resolution, and - To determine, in general sense, possible research programmes, their priority and their likelihood for success. This document is the result of this meeting. Its objective is to present to the CSNI proposals for future work on Human Performance research. The proposals are built upon the work performed to date by PWG1 and PWG5. Carrying out these proposals will continue to require close coordination on joint activities between these two PWGs. Reinforced systematic networking activities are needed particularly in management and organisational performance research to initiate and manage comparison and benchmarking activities. Synchronising the availability of funding is a specific problem in many cases. Since most

  16. Companion Cognitive Systems: A Step toward Human-Level AI


    Forbus, Kenneth D.; Hinrichs, Thomas R.


    We are developing Companion Cognitive Systems, a new kind of software that can be effectively treated as a collaborator. Aside from their potential utility, we believe this effort is important because it focuses on three key problems that must be solved to achieve human-level AI: Robust reasoning and learning, interactivity, and longevity. We describe the ideas we are using to develop the first architecture for Companions: analogical processing, grounded in cognitive science for reasoning and...

  17. Sleep and athletic performance: the effects of sleep loss on exercise performance, and physiological and cognitive responses to exercise. (United States)

    Fullagar, Hugh H K; Skorski, Sabrina; Duffield, Rob; Hammes, Daniel; Coutts, Aaron J; Meyer, Tim


    Although its true function remains unclear, sleep is considered critical to human physiological and cognitive function. Equally, since sleep loss is a common occurrence prior to competition in athletes, this could significantly impact upon their athletic performance. Much of the previous research has reported that exercise performance is negatively affected following sleep loss; however, conflicting findings mean that the extent, influence, and mechanisms of sleep loss affecting exercise performance remain uncertain. For instance, research indicates some maximal physical efforts and gross motor performances can be maintained. In comparison, the few published studies investigating the effect of sleep loss on performance in athletes report a reduction in sport-specific performance. The effects of sleep loss on physiological responses to exercise also remain equivocal; however, it appears a reduction in sleep quality and quantity could result in an autonomic nervous system imbalance, simulating symptoms of the overtraining syndrome. Additionally, increases in pro-inflammatory cytokines following sleep loss could promote immune system dysfunction. Of further concern, numerous studies investigating the effects of sleep loss on cognitive function report slower and less accurate cognitive performance. Based on this context, this review aims to evaluate the importance and prevalence of sleep in athletes and summarises the effects of sleep loss (restriction and deprivation) on exercise performance, and physiological and cognitive responses to exercise. Given the equivocal understanding of sleep and athletic performance outcomes, further research and consideration is required to obtain a greater knowledge of the interaction between sleep and performance.

  18. The human socio-cognitive niche and its evolutionary origins (United States)

    Whiten, Andrew; Erdal, David


    Hominin evolution took a remarkable pathway, as the foraging strategy extended to large mammalian prey already hunted by a guild of specialist carnivores. How was this possible for a moderately sized ape lacking the formidable anatomical adaptations of these competing ‘professional hunters’? The long-standing answer that this was achieved through the elaboration of a new ‘cognitive niche’ reliant on intelligence and technology is compelling, yet insufficient. Here we present evidence from a diversity of sources supporting the hypothesis that a fuller answer lies in the evolution of a new socio-cognitive niche, the principal components of which include forms of cooperation, egalitarianism, mindreading (also known as ‘theory of mind’), language and cultural transmission, that go far beyond the most comparable phenomena in other primates. This cognitive and behavioural complex allows a human hunter–gatherer band to function as a unique and highly competitive predatory organism. Each of these core components of the socio-cognitive niche is distinctive to humans, but primate research has increasingly identified related capacities that permit inferences about significant ancestral cognitive foundations to the five pillars of the human social cognitive niche listed earlier. The principal focus of the present study was to review and integrate this range of recent comparative discoveries. PMID:22734055

  19. Proceedings from Specialists Meeting on human performance in operational events

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)


    This conference on human performance in operational events is composed of 34 papers, grouped in 11 sessions. After an invited contribution on the human factor in the nuclear industry, the sessions are: session 1 (Operational events: Human performance in operational events - how to improve it?, Human performance research strategies for human performance, The development of a model of control room operator cognition), session 2 (Operational response: A study of the recovery from 120 events, Empirical study of the influence of organizational and procedural characteristics on team performance in the emergency situation using plant simulators, Cognitive skills and nuclear power plant operational decision making), session 3 (PSA for Probabilistic Safety Analysis: A sensitivity study of human errors in optimizing surveillance test interval (STI) and allowed outage time (AOT) of standby safety system, Analysis of Parks nuclear power plant personnel activity during safety related event sequences, An EDF project to update the Probabilistic Human Reliability Assessment PHRA methodology), session 4 (modelling with ATHEANA: Atheana, a technique for human error analysis, an overview of its methodological basis, Common elements on operational events across technologies, Results of nuclear power plant application of new technique for human error analysis), session 5 (Regulatory practice: US.NRC Research and analysis activities concerning human reliability assessment and human performance evaluation, Introduction of simulator-based examinations and its effects on the nuclear industry, Regulatory monitoring of human performance in PWR operation in France), session 6 (Simulation: Human performance in Bavarian nuclear power plant as a preventive element, Human performance event database, Crew situation awareness, diagnoses and performance in simulated nuclear power plant process disturbances), session 7 (Operator aids: Development of a plant navigation system, Operation system

  20. Performance Enhancement with Low Stress and Anxiety Modulated by Cognitive Flexibility (United States)

    Park, Hyung Woo; Kee, Baik Seok; Na, Churl; Na, Do-Hyun E.; Zaichkowsky, Leonard


    Objective The purpose of this study was to compare cognitive flexibility abilities, stress, and anxiety between starters and non-starter athletes. Methods A total of 30 male professional-soccer and 40 professional-baseball athletes were recruited. Wisconsin Card Sorting Test (WCST) and Trail Making Test A & B (TMT A & B) were administered to assess cognitive flexibility during competition. The Korean version of the STAI form Y (STAI-KY) and Visual analogue scale for anxiety and stress were used to assess the anxiety and stress. Results The starter group had better cognitive function (fewer perseverative errors and rapid TMTB times) (Z=3.32, panxiety (F=4.34, p=0.01; F=6.61, pcognitive performances were negatively correlated with stress and anxiety. Current results suggested that cognitive flexibility would enhance human performance by modulation of the anxiety and stress during competition. PMID:21994509

  1. Active glass-type human augmented cognition system considering attention and intention (United States)

    Kim, Bumhwi; Ojha, Amitash; Lee, Minho


    Human cognition is the result of an interaction of several complex cognitive processes with limited capabilities. Therefore, the primary objective of human cognitive augmentation is to assist and expand these limited human cognitive capabilities independently or together. In this study, we propose a glass-type human augmented cognition system, which attempts to actively assist human memory functions by providing relevant, necessary and intended information by constantly assessing intention of the user. To achieve this, we exploit selective attention and intention processes. Although the system can be used in various real-life scenarios, we test the performance of the system in a person identity scenario. To detect the intended face, the system analyses the gaze points and change in pupil size to determine the intention of the user. An assessment of the gaze points and change in pupil size together indicates that the user intends to know the identity and information about the person in question. Then, the system retrieves several clues through speech recognition system and retrieves relevant information about the face, which is finally displayed through head-mounted display. We present the performance of several components of the system. Our results show that the active and relevant assistance based on users' intention significantly helps the enhancement of memory functions.

  2. The effects of self-report cognitive failures and cognitive load on antisaccade performance

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Nick eBerggren


    Full Text Available Individuals reporting high levels of distractibility in everyday life show impaired performance in standard laboratory tasks measuring selective attention and inhibitory processes. Similarly, increasing cognitive load leads to more errors/distraction in a variety of cognitive tasks. How these two factors interact is currently unclear; highly distractible individuals may be affected more when their cognitive resources are taxed, or load may linearly affect performance for all individuals. We investigated the relationship between self-reported levels of cognitive failuresin daily life and performance in the antisaccade task, a widely used tool examining attentional control. Levels of concurrent cognitive demand were manipulated using a secondary auditory discrimination task. We found that both levels of self-reported cognitive failures and task load increased antisaccade latencies while having no effect on prosaccade eye-movements. However individuals rating themselves as suffering few daily life distractions showed a comparable load cost to those who experience many. These findings suggest that the likelihood of distraction is governed by the addition of both internal susceptibility and the external current load placed on working memory.

  3. Design of a Cognitive Tool to Enhance Problemsolving Performance (United States)

    Lee, Youngmin; Nelson, David


    The design of a cognitive tool to support problem-solving performance for external representation of knowledge is described. The limitations of conventional knowledge maps are analyzed in proposing the tool. The design principles and specifications are described. This tool is expected to enhance learners problem-solving performance by allowing…


    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Oliver Joe Robinson


    Full Text Available Anxiety disorders constitute a sizeable worldwide health burden with profound social and economic consequences. The symptoms are wide-ranging; from hyperarousal to difficulties with concentrating. This latter effect falls under the broad category of altered cognitive performance; in this review we examine studies quantifying such impacts of anxiety on cognition. Specifically, we focus on the translational threat of unpredictable shock paradigm, a method previously used to characterize emotional responses and defensive mechanisms that is now emerging as valuable tool for examining the interaction between anxiety and cognition. In particular, we compare the impact of threat of shock on cognition in humans to that of pathological anxiety disorders. We highlight that both threat of shock and anxiety disorders promote mechanisms associated with harm avoidance across multiple levels of cognition (from perception to attention to learning and executive function – a ‘hot’ cognitive function which can be both adaptive and maladaptive depending upon the circumstances. This mechanism comes at a cost to other functions such as working memory, but leaves some functions, such as planning, unperturbed. We also highlight a number of cognitive effects that differ across anxiety disorders and threat of shock. These discrepant effects are largely seen in ‘cold’ cognitive functions involving control mechanisms and may reveal boundaries between adaptive (e.g. response to threat and maladaptive (e.g. pathological anxiety. We conclude by raising a number of unresolved questions regarding the role of anxiety in cognition that may provide fruitful avenues for future research.

  5. Sarcopenia and impairment in cognitive and physical performance

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Tolea MI


    Full Text Available Magdalena I Tolea,1 James E Galvin1–3 1Alzheimer’s Disease Center, Department of Neurology, 2Department of Psychiatry, 3Department of Population Health, New York University School of Medicine, New York, NY, USA Background: Whether older adults with sarcopenia who underperform controls on tests of physical performance and cognition also have a higher likelihood of combined cognitive-physical impairment is not clear. We assessed the impact of sarcopenia on impairment in both aspects of functionality and the relative contribution of its components, muscle mass and strength.Methods: Two hundred and twenty-three community-dwelling adults aged 40 years and older (mean age =68.1±10.6 years; 65% female were recruited and underwent physical functionality, anthropometry, and cognitive testing. Participants with low muscle mass were categorized as pre-sarcopenic; those with low muscle mass and muscle strength as sarcopenic; those with higher muscle mass and low muscle strength only were categorized as non-sarcopenic and were compared on risk of cognitive impairment (Montreal Cognitive Assessment <26; Ascertaining Dementia 8 ≥2, physical impairment (Mini Physical Performance Test <12, both, or neither by ordinal logistic regression. Results: Compared to controls, those with sarcopenia were six times more likely to have combined cognitive impairment/physical impairment with a fully adjusted model showing a three-fold increased odds ratio. The results were consistent across different measures of global cognition (odds ratio =3.46, 95% confidence interval =1.07–11.45 for the Montreal Cognitive Assessment; odds ratio =3.61, 95% confidence interval =1.11–11.72 for Ascertaining Dementia 8. Pre-sarcopenic participants were not different from controls. The effect of sarcopenia on cognition is related to low muscle strength rather than low muscle mass. Conclusion: Individuals with sarcopenia are not only more likely to have single but also to have dual

  6. An advanced human reliability analysis methodology: analysis of cognitive errors focused on

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Kim, J. H.; Jeong, W. D.


    The conventional Human Reliability Analysis (HRA) methods such as THERP/ASEP, HCR and SLIM has been criticised for their deficiency in analysing cognitive errors which occurs during operator's decision making process. In order to supplement the limitation of the conventional methods, an advanced HRA method, what is called the 2 nd generation HRA method, including both qualitative analysis and quantitative assessment of cognitive errors has been being developed based on the state-of-the-art theory of cognitive systems engineering and error psychology. The method was developed on the basis of human decision-making model and the relation between the cognitive function and the performance influencing factors. The application of the proposed method to two emergency operation tasks is presented

  7. Cognitive aspects of human motor activity: Contribution of right hemisphere and cerebellum

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sedov A. S.


    Full Text Available Background. Concepts of movement and action are not completely synonymous, but what distinguishes one from the other? Movement may be defined as stimulus- driven motor acts, while action implies realization of a specific motor goal, essential for cognitively driven behavior. Although recent clinical and neuroimaging studies have revealed some areas of the brain that mediate cognitive aspects of human motor behavior, the identification of the basic neural circuit underlying the interaction between cognitive and motor functions remains a challenge for neurophysiology and psychology. Objective. In the current study, we used functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI to investigate elementary cognitive aspects of human motor behavior. Design. Twenty healthy right-handed volunteers were asked to perform stimulus-driven and goal-directed movements by clenching the right hand into a fist (7 times. The cognitive component lay in anticipation of simple stimuli signals. In order to disentangle the purely motor component of stimulus-driven movements, we used the event-related (ER paradigm. FMRI was performed on a 3 Tesla Siemens Magnetom Verio MR-scanner with 32-channel head coil. Results. We have shown differences in the localization of brain activity depending on the involvement of cognitive functions. These differences testify to the role of the cerebellum and the right hemisphere in motor cognition. In particular, our results suggest that right associative cortical areas, together with the right posterolateral cerebellum (Crus I and lobule VI and basal ganglia, de ne cognitive control of motor activity, promoting a shift from a stimulus-driven to a goal-directed mode. Conclusion. These results, along with recent data from research on cerebro-cerebellar circuitry, redefine the scope of tasks for exploring the contribution of the cerebellum to diverse aspects of human motor behavior and cognition.

  8. The Effects of Aerobic Exercise and Gaming on Cognitive Performance. (United States)

    Douris, Peter C; Handrakis, John P; Apergis, Demitra; Mangus, Robert B; Patel, Rima; Limtao, Jessica; Platonova, Svetlana; Gregorio, Aladino; Luty, Elliot


    The purpose of our study was to investigate the effects of video gaming, aerobic exercise (biking), and the combination of these two activities on the domains of cognitive performance: selective attention, processing speed, and executive functioning. The study was a randomized clinical trial with 40 subjects (mean age 23.7 ± 1.8 years) randomized to one of four thirty-minute conditions: video gaming, biking, simultaneous gaming and biking, and a control condition. Cognitive performance was measured pre and post condition using the Stroop test and Trails B test. A mixed design was utilized. While video gaming, biking, simultaneous gaming and biking conditions improved selective attention and processing speed (p bike condition improved the highest order of cognitive performance, executive function (p biking and gaming may have surpassed attentional capacity limits, ultimately increasing errors during the executive function tests of our cognitive performance battery. The results suggest that the fatiguing effects of a combined physically and mentally challenging task that extends after the exercise cessation may overcome the eventual beneficial cognitive effects derived from the physical exercise.

  9. Serum 25-hydroxyvitamin D predicts cognitive performance in adults

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Darwish H


    Full Text Available Hala Darwish,1 Pia Zeinoun,2 Husam Ghusn,3,4 Brigitte Khoury,2 Hani Tamim,5 Samia J Khoury6 1Hariri School of Nursing, Faculty of Medicine, American University of Beirut, Beirut, Lebanon; 2Psychiatry Department, Faculty of Medicine, American University of Beirut, Beirut, Lebanon; 3Internal Medicine Department, Faculty of Medicine, American University of Beirut, Beirut, Lebanon; 4Geriatrics Department, Ain Wazein Hospital, El Chouf, Lebanon; 5Clinical Research Institute, Faculty of Medicine, American University of Beirut, Beirut, Lebanon; 6Neurology Department, Faculty of Medicine, American University of Beirut, Beirut, Lebanon Background: Vitamin D is an endogenous hormone known to regulate calcium levels in the body and plays a role in cognitive performance. Studies have shown an association between vitamin D deficiency and cognitive impairment in older adults. Lebanon has a high 25-hydroxyvitamin D (25(OHD deficiency prevalence across all age groups. Methods: In this cross-sectional study, we explored the cognitive performance and serum 25(OHD levels using an electrochemoluminescent immunoassay in 254 older (>60 years as well as younger (30–60 years adults. Subjects’ characteristics, including age, years of education, wearing of veil, alcohol consumption, smoking, and physical exercise, were collected. Participants were screened for depression prior to cognitive screening using the Montreal Cognitive Assessment Arabic version. Visuospatial memory was tested using the Rey Complex Figure Test and Recognition Trial, and speed of processing was assessed using the Symbol Digit Modalities test. Results: Pearson’s correlation and stepwise linear regression analyses showed that a low vitamin D level was associated with greater risk of cognitive impairment in older as well as younger adults. Conclusion: These findings suggest that correction of vitamin D needs to be explored as an intervention to prevent cognitive impairment. Prospective

  10. Integrating Human Performance and Technology

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Farris, Ronald K.; Medema, Heather


    Human error is a significant factor in the cause and/or complication of events that occur in the commercial nuclear industry. In recent years, great gains have been made using Human Performance (HU) tools focused on targeting individual behaviors. However, the cost of improving HU is growing and resistance to add yet another HU tool certainly exists, particularly for those tools that increase the paperwork for operations. Improvements in HU that are the result of leveraging existing technology, such as hand-held mobile technologies, have the potential to reduce human error in controlling system configurations, safety tag-outs, and other verifications. Operator rounds, valve lineup verifications, containment closure verifications, safety and equipment protection, and system tagging can be supported by field-deployable wireless technologies. These devices can also support the availability of critical component data in the main control room and other locations. This research pilot project reviewing wireless hand-held technology is part of the Light Water Reactor Sustainability Program (LWRSP), a research and development (R and D) program sponsored by the U. S. Department of Energy (DOE). The project is being performed in close collaboration with industry R and D programs to provide the technical foundations for licensing, and managing the long-term, safe, and economical operation of current nuclear power plants. The LWRSP vision is to develop technologies and other solutions that can improve the reliability, sustain the safety, and extend the life of the current nuclear reactor fleet. (author)

  11. Integrating Human Performance and Technology

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Ronald K. Farris; Heather Medema


    Human error is a significant factor in the cause and/or complication of events that occur in the commercial nuclear industry. In recent years, great gains have been made using Human Performance (HU) tools focused on targeting individual behaviors. However, the cost of improving HU is growing and resistance to add yet another HU tool certainly exists, particularly for those tools that increase the paperwork for operations. Improvements in HU that are the result of leveraging existing technology, such as hand-held mobile technologies, have the potential to reduce human error in controlling system configurations, safety tag-outs, and other verifications. Operator rounds, valve line-up verifications, containment closure verifications, safety & equipment protection, and system tagging can be supported by field-deployable wireless technologies. These devices can also support the availability of critical component data in the main control room and other locations. This research pilot project reviewing wireless hand-held technology is part of the Light Water Reactor Sustainability Program (LWRSP), a research and development (R&D) program sponsored by the U. S. Department of Energy (DOE). The project is being performed in close collaboration with industry R&D programs to provide the technical foundations for licensing, and managing the long-term, safe, and economical operation of current nuclear power plants. The LWRSP vision is to develop technologies and other solutions that can improve the reliability, sustain the safety, and extend the life of the current nuclear reactor fleet.

  12. Cognitive modelling: a basic complement of human reliability analysis

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Bersini, U.; Cacciabue, P.C.; Mancini, G.


    In this paper the issues identified in modelling humans and machines are discussed in the perspective of the consideration of human errors managing complex plants during incidental as well as normal conditions. The dichotomy between the use of a cognitive versus a behaviouristic model approach is discussed and the complementarity aspects rather than the differences of the two methods are identified. A cognitive model based on a hierarchical goal-oriented approach and driven by fuzzy logic methodology is presented as the counterpart to the 'classical' THERP methodology for studying human errors. Such a cognitive model is discussed at length and its fundamental components, i.e. the High Level Decision Making and the Low Level Decision Making models, are reviewed. Finally, the inadequacy of the 'classical' THERP methodology to deal with cognitive errors is discussed on the basis of a simple test case. For the same case the cognitive model is then applied showing the flexibility and adequacy of the model to dynamic configuration with time-dependent failures of components and with consequent need for changing of strategy during the transient itself. (author)

  13. The Importance of the Study of Cognitive Performance Enhancement for U.S. National Security. (United States)

    Malish, Richard G


    The American military is embarking on the 'Third Offset'-a strategy designed to produce seismic shifts in the future of warfare. Central to the approach is the conjoining of humans, technology, and machines to deliver a decisive advantage on the battlefield. Because technology will spread rapidly and globally, tactical overmatch will occur when American operators possess a competitive edge in cognition. Investigation of cognitive enhancing therapeutics is not widely articulated as an adjunct to the Third Offset, yet failure to study promising agents could represent a strategic vulnerability. Because of its legacy of research into therapeutic agents to enhance human-machine interplay, the aerospace medical community represents a front-running candidate to perform this work. Notably, there are strong signals emanating from gambling, academic, and video-gaming enterprises that already-developed stimulants and other agents provide cognitive benefits. These agents should be studied not only for reasons of national security, but also because cognitive enhancement may be a necessary step in the evolution of humankind. To illustrate these points, this article will assert that: 1) the need to preserve and enhance physical and cognitive health will become more and more important over the next century; 2) aeromedical specialists are in a position to take the lead in the endeavor to enhance cognition; 3) signals of enhancement of the type useful to both military and medical efforts exist aplenty in today's society; and 4) the aeromedical community should approach human enhancement research deliberately but carefully.Malish RG. The importance of the study of cognitive performance enhancement for U.S. national security. Aerosp Med Hum Perform. 2017; 88(8):773-778.

  14. Training Attentional Control Improves Cognitive and Motor Task Performance. (United States)

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


    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.

  15. Cognitive performance in long-term abstinent elderly alcoholics. (United States)

    Fein, George; McGillivray, Shannon


    To date, there is a wealth of literature describing the deleterious effects of active alcoholism on cognitive function. There is also a growing body of literature on the extent of cognitive recovery that can occur with abstinence. However, there is still a dearth of published findings on cognitive functioning in very long-term abstinence alcoholics, especially in the elderly population. The current study examines 91 elderly abstinent alcoholics (EAA) (49 men and 42 women) with an average age of 67.3 years, abstinent for an average of 14.8 years (range 0.5 to 45 years), and age and gender comparable light/nondrinking controls. The EAA group was divided into 3 subgroups: individuals that attained abstinence before age 50 years, between the ages 50 and 60 years, and after age 60 years. Attention, verbal fluency, abstraction/cognitive flexibility, psychomotor, immediate memory, delayed memory, reaction time, spatial processing, and auditory working memory were assessed. The AMNART and cranium size were used as estimates of brain reserve capacity, and the association of all variables with alcohol use measures was examined. Overall, the EAA groups performed comparably to controls on the assessments of cognitive function. Only the abstinent in group before 50 years of age performed worse than controls, and this was only in the domain of auditory working memory. EAAs had larger craniums than their controls. This effect was strongest for those who drank the longest and had the shortest abstinence. Such individuals also performed better cognitively. Our data showed that elderly alcoholics that drank late into life, but with at least 6 months abstinence can exhibit normal cognitive functioning. Selective survivorship and selection bias probably play a part in these findings. Cognitively healthier alcoholics, with more brain reserve capacity, may be more likely to live into their 60s, 70s, or 80s of age with relatively intact cognition, and to volunteer for studies such as

  16. Age and individual sleep characteristics affect cognitive performance in anesthesiology residents after a 24-hour shift. (United States)

    Tadinac, Meri; Sekulić, Ante; Hromatko, Ivana; Mazul-Sunko, Branka; Ivancić, Romina


    Previous research has shown that both shift work and sleep deprivation have an adverse influence on various aspects of human cognitive performance. The aim of this study was to explore changes in cognitive functioning and subjective sleepiness of anesthesiology residents after a 24-hour shift. Twenty-six anesthesiology residents completed a set of psychological instruments at the beginning and at the end of the shift, as well as a questionnaire regarding information about the shift, Stanford Sleepiness Scale, and Circadian Type Questionnaire. There was a significant decline in cognitive performance measured by the Auditory Verbal Learning Test after the shift. The effect was stronger in older participants and in those with high scores on rigidity of sleep scale and low scores on the ability to overcome sleepiness scale. There were no differences in the digits forward test (a measure of concentration), while digits backward test (a measure of working memory) even showed an improved performance after the shift. Although participants reported being significantly sleepier after the shift, the subjective sleepiness did not correlate with any of the objective measures of cognitive performance. In conclusion, the performance in short tasks involving concentration and working memory was not impaired, while performance in long-term and monotone tasks declined after sleep deprivation, and the magnitude of this decline depended on the specific individual characteristics of sleep and on age Surprisingly, age seemed to have an important impact on cognitive functions after shift work even in the relatively age-homogeneous population of young anesthesiology residents.

  17. Caffeine and cognitive performance: persistent methodological challenges in caffeine research. (United States)

    James, Jack E


    Human cognitive performance is widely perceived to be enhanced by caffeine at usual dietary doses. However, the evidence for and against this belief continues to be vigorously contested. Controversy has centred on caffeine withdrawal and withdrawal reversal as potential sources of experimental confounding. In response, some researchers have enlisted "caffeine-naïve" experimental participants (persons alleged to consume little or no caffeine) assuming that they are not subject to withdrawal. This mini-review examines relevant research to illustrate general methodological challenges that have been the cause of enduring confusion in caffeine research. At issue are the processes of caffeine withdrawal and withdrawal reversal, the definition of caffeine-naïve, the population representativeness of participants deemed to be caffeine-naïve, and confounding due to caffeine tolerance. Attention to these processes is necessary if premature conclusions are to be avoided, and if caffeine's complex effects and the mechanisms responsible for those effects are to be illuminated. Strategies are described for future caffeine research aimed at minimising confounding from withdrawal and withdrawal reversal. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  18. [Human interaction, social cognition, and the superior temporal sulcus]. (United States)

    Brunelle, Francis; Saitovitch, Anna; Boddaert, Nathalie; Grevent, David; Cambier, Jean; Lelord, Gilbert; Samson, Yves; Zilbovicius, Monica


    Human beings are social animals. This ability to live together is ensured by cognitive functions, the neuroanatomical bases of which are starting to be unraveled by MRI-based studies. The regions and network engaged in this process are known as the "social brain ". The core of this network is the superior temporal sulcus (STS), which integrates sensory and emotional inputs. Modeling studies of healthy volunteers have shown the role of the recognizing others as biological beings, as well as facial and eye-gaze recognition, intentionality and emotions. This cognitive capacity has been described as the "theory of mind ". Pathological models such as autism, in which the main clinical abnormality is altered social abilities and communication, have confirmed the role of the STS in the social brain. Conceptualisation of this empathic capacity has been described as "meta cognition ", which forms the basis of human social organizationand culture.

  19. Cognitive Factors Affecting Freeze-like Behavior in Humans. (United States)

    Alban, Michael W; Pocknell, Victoria


    Contemporary research on survival-related defensive behaviors has identified physiological markers of freeze/flight/fight. Our research focused on cognitive factors associated with freeze-like behavior in humans. Study 1 tested if an explicit decision to freeze is associated with the psychophysiological state of freezing. Heart rate deceleration occurred when participants chose to freeze. Study 2 varied the efficacy of freezing relative to other defense options and found "freeze" was responsive to variations in the perceived effectiveness of alternative actions. Study 3 tested if individual differences in motivational orientation affect preference for a "freeze" option when the efficacy of options is held constant. A trend in the predicted direction suggested that naturally occurring cognitions led loss-avoiders to select "freeze" more often than reward-seekers. In combination, our attention to the cognitive factors affecting freeze-like behavior in humans represents a preliminary step in addressing an important but neglected research area.

  20. Dietary glycaemic load associated with cognitive performance in elderly subjects. (United States)

    Power, Susan E; O'Connor, Eibhlís M; Ross, R Paul; Stanton, Catherine; O'Toole, Paul W; Fitzgerald, Gerald F; Jeffery, Ian B


    Ageing is associated with loss of cognitive function and an increased risk of dementia which is expected to place growing demands on health and long-term care providers. Among multiple causative factors, evidence suggests that cognitive impairment in older subjects may be influenced by diet. The objective of this study was to examine the association between dietary patterns, dietary glycaemic load (GL) and cognition in older Irish adults. Community-dwelling subjects (n 208; 94 males and 114 females; aged 64-93 years) were analysed. Dietary intake was assessed using a validated semi-quantitative food frequency questionnaire. Cognitive capacity was tested using the Mini-Mental State Examination (MMSE). The data were clustered to derive patterns of dietary intake. Multivariable-adjusted logistic and Poisson regression models were used to examine the relationship between dietary GL and MMSE score. Elderly subjects consuming 'prudent' dietary patterns (high in fruit, vegetables, fish, low-fat dairy and salad dressings and low in red meat and white bread) had higher MMSE scores (better cognitive function) than those consuming 'Western' dietary pattern (high in red meat and white bread and low in fruit and vegetables; P nutritional status, residential property price, cardiovascular medications and energy intake. In this community-dwelling elderly Irish cohort, consumption of a high glycaemic diet is associated with poorer cognitive performance as assessed by the MMSE.

  1. Plant operator performance evaluation based on cognitive process analysis experiment

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Ujita, H.; Fukuda, M.


    This paper reports on an experiment to clarify plant operators' cognitive processes that has been performed, to improve the man-machine interface which supports their diagnoses and decisions. The cognitive processes under abnormal conditions were evaluated by protocol analyses interviews, etc. in the experiment using a plant training simulator. A cognitive process model is represented by a stochastic network, based on Rasmussen's decision making model. Each node of the network corresponds to an element of the cognitive process, such as observation, interpretation, execution, etc. Some observations were obtained as follows, by comparison of Monte Carlo simulation results with the experiment results: A process to reconfirm the plant parameters after execution of a task and feedback paths from this process to the observation and the task definition of next task were observed. The feedback probability average and standard deviation should be determined for each incident type to explain correctly the individual differences in the cognitive processes. The tendency for the operator's cognitive level to change from skill-based to knowledge-based via rule-based behavior was observed during the feedback process

  2. Cognitive human reliability analysis for an assessment of the safety significance of complex transients

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Amico, P.J.; Hsu, C.J.; Youngblood, R.W.; Fitzpatrick, R.G.


    This paper reports that as part of a probabilistic assessment of the safety significance of complex transients at certain PWR power plants, it was necessary to perform a cognitive human reliability analysis. To increase the confidence in the results, it was desirable to make use of actual observations of operator response which were available for the assessment. An approach was developed which incorporated these observations into the human cognitive reliability (HCR) modeling approach. The results obtained provided additional insights over what would have been found using other approaches. These insights were supported by the observations, and it is suggested that this approach be considered for use in future probabilistic safety assessments

  3. Technological Augmentation of Human Cognition: An Interdisciplinary Review. (United States)

    Smithsonian Institution, Washington, DC.

    A series of five interdisciplinary conferences held over a two-year period explored new teaching and training concepts and methodologies which offer powerful, symbiotic means of augmenting human cognition. The basic discussion points of the conferences are summarized. It was felt that the conferences were significant in that they brought together…

  4. Homocysteine and Cognitive Performance in Elders with Self-Neglect (United States)

    Burnett, J.; Smith, S.M.; Aung, K.; Dyer, C.


    Elevated plasma homocysteine has been associated with altered cognitive performance in older adults. Elders referred to Adult Protective Services (APS) for self-neglect have been reported to have elevated plasma homocysteine levels and to suffer from cognitive impairment. This study assesses the association, if any, between plasma homocysteine and cognitive performance among elders with self-neglect. Methods: Sixty-five community-living adults, 65 years of age and older, reported to Adult Protective Services for self-neglect and 55 matched controls (matched for age, ethnicity, gender and socio-economic status) consented and participated in this study. The research team conducted in-home comprehensive geriatric assessments which included the mini-mental state exam (MMSE), the 15-item geriatric depression scale (GDS), the Wolf-Klein Clock Drawing Tests (CDT) and a comprehensive nutritional biochemistry panel, which included plasma homocysteine. Student s t tests and Pearson correlations were conducted to assess for bivariate associations. Results: Elders with self-neglect had significantly higher plasma homocysteine levels (M=12.68umol/L, sd=4.4) compared to the controls (M=10.40umol/L, sd=3.61;t=3.21, df=127, p=.002). There were no statistically significant associations between cognitive performance and plasma homocysteine in the self-neglect group, however there was a significant correlation between plasma homocysteine and the CDT among the controls (r=-.296, p=.022). Conclusion: Mean plasma homocysteine levels were significantly higher in elders with self-neglect, however, they do not appear to be related to cognitive performance, indicating that cognitive impairment in elder self-neglect involve mechanisms other than hyperhomocysteinemia. These findings warrant further investigation

  5. Cognitive Determinants of Academic Performance in Nigerian Pharmacy Schools (United States)

    Sansgiry, Sujit S.; Ukwe, Chinwe V.


    Objective. To evaluate cognitive factors that might influence academic performance of students in Nigerian pharmacy schools. Methods. A cross-sectional, multi-center survey of Nigerian pharmacy students from 7 schools of pharmacy was conducted using 2 validated questionnaires measuring cognitive constructs such as test anxiety, academic competence, test competence, time management, and strategic study habits. Results. Female students and older students scored significantly better on time management skills and study habits, respectively. Test anxiety was negatively associated with academic performance while test competence, academic competence, and time management were positively associated with academic performance. These 4 constructs significantly discriminated between the lower and higher performing students, with the first 2 contributing to the most differences. Conclusion. Test and academic competence, test anxiety, and time management were significant factors associated with low and high academic performance among Nigerian pharmacy students. The study also demonstrated the significant effects of age, gender, and marital status on these constructs. PMID:27168614

  6. Cognitive Determinants of Academic Performance in Nigerian Pharmacy Schools. (United States)

    Ubaka, Chukwuemeka M; Sansgiry, Sujit S; Ukwe, Chinwe V


    Objective. To evaluate cognitive factors that might influence academic performance of students in Nigerian pharmacy schools. Methods. A cross-sectional, multi-center survey of Nigerian pharmacy students from 7 schools of pharmacy was conducted using 2 validated questionnaires measuring cognitive constructs such as test anxiety, academic competence, test competence, time management, and strategic study habits. Results. Female students and older students scored significantly better on time management skills and study habits, respectively. Test anxiety was negatively associated with academic performance while test competence, academic competence, and time management were positively associated with academic performance. These 4 constructs significantly discriminated between the lower and higher performing students, with the first 2 contributing to the most differences. Conclusion. Test and academic competence, test anxiety, and time management were significant factors associated with low and high academic performance among Nigerian pharmacy students. The study also demonstrated the significant effects of age, gender, and marital status on these constructs.

  7. Human performance modeling for system of systems analytics.

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Dixon, Kevin R.; Lawton, Craig R.; Basilico, Justin Derrick; Longsine, Dennis E. (INTERA, Inc., Austin, TX); Forsythe, James Chris; Gauthier, John Henry; Le, Hai D.


    A Laboratory-Directed Research and Development project was initiated in 2005 to investigate Human Performance Modeling in a System of Systems analytic environment. SAND2006-6569 and SAND2006-7911 document interim results from this effort; this report documents the final results. The problem is difficult because of the number of humans involved in a System of Systems environment and the generally poorly defined nature of the tasks that each human must perform. A two-pronged strategy was followed: one prong was to develop human models using a probability-based method similar to that first developed for relatively well-understood probability based performance modeling; another prong was to investigate more state-of-art human cognition models. The probability-based modeling resulted in a comprehensive addition of human-modeling capability to the existing SoSAT computer program. The cognitive modeling resulted in an increased understanding of what is necessary to incorporate cognition-based models to a System of Systems analytic environment.

  8. Night shift decreases cognitive performance of ICU physicians. (United States)

    Maltese, François; Adda, Mélanie; Bablon, Amandine; Hraeich, Sami; Guervilly, Christophe; Lehingue, Samuel; Wiramus, Sandrine; Leone, Marc; Martin, Claude; Vialet, Renaud; Thirion, Xavier; Roch, Antoine; Forel, Jean-Marie; Papazian, Laurent


    The relationship between tiredness and the risk of medical errors is now commonly accepted. The main objective of this study was to assess the impact of an intensive care unit (ICU) night shift on the cognitive performance of a group of intensivists. The influence of professional experience and the amount of sleep on cognitive performance was also investigated. A total of 51 intensivists from three ICUs (24 seniors and 27 residents) were included. The study participants were evaluated after a night of rest and after a night shift according to a randomized order. Four cognitive skills were tested according to the Wechsler Adult Intelligence Scale and the Wisconsin Card Sorting Test. All cognitive abilities worsened after a night shift: working memory capacity (11.3 ± 0.3 vs. 9.4 ± 0.3; p night shift. The cognitive abilities of intensivists were significantly altered following a night shift in the ICU, regardless of either the amount of professional experience or the duration of sleep during the shift. The consequences for patients' safety and physicians' health should be further evaluated.

  9. Metabolic syndrome and cognitive performance in the elderly

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Marianna Rinaldi


    Full Text Available Metabolic syndrome (MetS is a cluster of conditions, each of which represents a risk factor for cardiovascular disease: central obesity, hyperglycemia, dyslipidemia and hypertension. In different recent studies, MetS has been associated with an accelerate cognitive decline in the elderly. The aim of our research was to investigate the relationship between MetS and cognitive performance in 174 Italian elderly people living in Val Cenischia (Piedmont, Italy. Mini mental state examination (MMSE has been administered to assess the cognitive status of all participants. The prevalence of MetS is 50.3% (51.3 and 49.5% for males and females, respectively. Our results confirm the association between MetS and worse cognitive performance in the elderly: an increased number of MetS components is associated with an increased risk of developing cognitive impairment (odds ratio=1.54; confidence interval 95%:1.04-2.28; P<0.05.

  10. Understanding Cognitive Performance During Robot-Assisted Surgery. (United States)

    Guru, Khurshid A; Shafiei, Somayeh B; Khan, Atif; Hussein, Ahmed A; Sharif, Mohamed; Esfahani, Ehsan T


    To understand cognitive function of an expert surgeon in various surgical scenarios while performing robot-assisted surgery. In an Internal Review Board approved study, National Aeronautics and Space Administration-Task Load Index (NASA-TLX) questionnaire with surgical field notes were simultaneously completed. A wireless electroencephalography (EEG) headset was used to monitor brain activity during all procedures. Three key portions were evaluated: lysis of adhesions, extended lymph node dissection, and urethro-vesical anastomosis (UVA). Cognitive metrics extracted were distraction, mental workload, and mental state. In evaluating lysis of adhesions, mental state (EEG) was associated with better performance (NASA-TLX). Utilizing more mental resources resulted in better performance as self-reported. Outcomes of lysis were highly dependent on cognitive function and decision-making skills. In evaluating extended lymph node dissection, there was a negative correlation between distraction level (EEG) and mental demand, physical demand and effort (NASA-TLX). Similar to lysis of adhesion, utilizing more mental resources resulted in better performance (NASA-TLX). Lastly, with UVA, workload (EEG) negatively correlated with mental and temporal demand and was associated with better performance (NASA-TLX). The EEG recorded workload as seen here was a combination of both cognitive performance (finding solution) and motor workload (execution). Majority of workload was contributed by motor workload of an expert surgeon. During UVA, muscle memory and motor skills of expert are keys to completing the UVA. Cognitive analysis shows that expert surgeons utilized different mental resources based on their need. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  11. Reduced Electromyographic Fatigue Threshold after Performing a Cognitive Fatiguing Task. (United States)

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


    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.

  12. The Influence of Cognitive Abilities on Mathematical Problem Solving Performance (United States)

    Bahar, Abdulkadir


    Problem solving has been a core theme in education for several decades. Educators and policy makers agree on the importance of the role of problem solving skills for school and real life success. A primary purpose of this study was to investigate the influence of cognitive abilities on mathematical problem solving performance of students. The…

  13. Nutritional Status and Cognitive Performance among Children Aged ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Without adequate nutrition, children cannot develop to their full physical and mental potentials. The nutritional status and the cognitive performance of 500 school children aged 5-12 years from urban and rural areas of Enugu State, Nigeria were evaluated. Anthropometric measurements of heights and weights were ...

  14. Distributed Cognition in Sports Teams: Explaining Successful and Expert Performance (United States)

    Williamson, Kellie; Cox, Rochelle


    In this article we use a hybrid methodology to better understand the skilful performance of sports teams as an exemplar of distributed cognition. We highlight key differences between a team of individual experts (an aggregate system) and an expert team (an emergent system), and outline the kinds of shared characteristics likely to be found in an…

  15. Performance and Cognitive Assessment in 3-D Modeling (United States)

    Fahrer, Nolan E.; Ernst, Jeremy V.; Branoff, Theodore J.; Clark, Aaron C.


    The purpose of this study was to investigate identifiable differences between performance and cognitive assessment scores in a 3-D modeling unit of an engineering drafting course curriculum. The study aimed to provide further investigation of the need of skill-based assessments in engineering/technical graphics courses to potentially increase…

  16. Prospective Associations between Dietary Patterns and Cognitive Performance during Adolescence (United States)

    Nyaradi, Anett; Foster, Jonathan K.; Hickling, Siobhan; Li, Jianghong; Ambrosini, Gina L.; Jacques, Angela; Oddy, Wendy H.


    Background: The aim of the study was to investigate prospective associations between dietary patterns and cognitive performance during adolescence. Methods: Participants were sourced from the Western Australian Pregnancy Cohort (Raine) Study that includes 2868 children born between 1989 and 1992 in Perth, Western Australia. When the children were…

  17. Results of 2-year vitamin B treatment on cognitive performance

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Zwaluw, van der N.L.; Dhonukshe-Rutten, R.A.M.; Wijngaarden, van J.P.; Brouwer, E.M.; Rest, van de O.; Veld, in 't P.H.; Enneman, A.W.; Dijk, van S.C.; Ham, A.C.; Swart, K.M.A.; Velde, van der N.; Schoor, van N.M.; Cammen, van der T.J.M.; Uitterlinden, A.G.; Lips, P.; Kessels, R.P.C.; Groot, de C.P.G.M.


    Objective: We investigated the effects of 2-year folic acid and vitamin B12 supplementation on cognitive performance in elderly people with elevated homocysteine (Hcy) levels. Methods: This multicenter, double-blind, randomized, placebo-controlled trial included 2,919 elderly participants (65 years

  18. Midsagittal Brain Shape Correlation with Intelligence and Cognitive Performance (United States)

    Bruner, Emiliano; Martin-Loeches, Manuel; Burgaleta, Miguel; Colom, Roberto


    Brain shape might influence cognitive performance because of the relationships between functions, spatial organization, and differential volumetric development of cortical areas. Here we analyze the relationships between midsagittal brain shape variation and a set of basic psychological measures. Coordinates in 2D from 102 MRI-scanned young adult…

  19. Sibsize, Family Environment, Cognitive Performance, and Affective Characteristics (United States)

    Marjoribanks, Kevin


    Incorporates measures of family environment (parent-child interaction) into research methodology to study the effects of sibsize (family size and birth order) on a child's cognitive performance and affective behavior. Provides tentative support for the confluence model of sibsize influences on children's behaviors. (RL)

  20. Cybersecurity systems for human cognition augmentation

    CERN Document Server

    Pino, Robinson E; Shevenell, Michael


    This book explores cybersecurity research and development efforts, including ideas that deal with the growing challenge of how computing engineering can merge with neuroscience. The contributing authors, who are renowned leaders in this field, thoroughly examine new technologies that will automate security procedures and perform autonomous functions with decision making capabilities. To maximize reader insight into the range of professions dealing with increased cybersecurity issues, this book presents work performed by government, industry, and academic research institutions working at the fr

  1. Measurement of mental attention: Assessing a cognitive component underlying performance on standardized intelligence tests


    Steven J. Howard; Janice Johnson; Juan Pascual-Leone


    Despite the widespread use of standardized IQ tests to measure human intelligence, problems with such measures have led some to suggest that better indices may derive from measurement of cognitive processes underlying performance on IQ tests (e.g., working memory capacity). However, measures from both approaches may exhibit performance biases in favour of majority groups, due to the influence of prior learning and experience. Mental attentional (M-) capacity is proposed to be a causal factor ...

  2. Automation and robotics human performance (United States)

    Mah, Robert W.


    The scope of this report is limited to the following: (1) assessing the feasibility of the assumptions for crew productivity during the intra-vehicular activities and extra-vehicular activities; (2) estimating the appropriate level of automation and robotics to accomplish balanced man-machine, cost-effective operations in space; (3) identifying areas where conceptually different approaches to the use of people and machines can leverage the benefits of the scenarios; and (4) recommending modifications to scenarios or developing new scenarios that will improve the expected benefits. The FY89 special assessments are grouped into the five categories shown in the report. The high level system analyses for Automation & Robotics (A&R) and Human Performance (HP) were performed under the Case Studies Technology Assessment category, whereas the detailed analyses for the critical systems and high leverage development areas were performed under the appropriate operations categories (In-Space Vehicle Operations or Planetary Surface Operations). The analysis activities planned for the Science Operations technology areas were deferred to FY90 studies. The remaining activities such as analytic tool development, graphics/video demonstrations and intelligent communicating systems software architecture were performed under the Simulation & Validations category.

  3. Participation in recreation and cognitive activities as a predictor of cognitive performance of adults with/without Down syndrome. (United States)

    Lifshitz-Vahav, Hefziba; Shnitzer, Shlomit; Mashal, Nira


    The Cognitive Activity Theory suggests an association between participation in cognitive activities during midlife and cognitive functioning in the short term. We examined the impact of participation in cognitively stimulating activities conveyed during leisure activities on crystallized and fluid tests' performance among adults with intellectual disabilities (ID). Adults (n = 32; chronological age = 25-55) with non-specific ID and with Down syndrome rated the frequency of their participation in leisure activities. Pursuits included more cognitively involving (reading, participating in academic courses) and less cognitively involving (cooking, dancing) activities. Three judges ranked activities according to their cognitive load on a 1 (few cognitive components) to 5 (many cognitive components) points scale. The findings indicate two new scales: cognitively stimulating activities and recreational stimulating activities. The crystallized battery included phonemic fluency, synonyms, idioms, and verbal metaphors. The fluid battery included the Homophone Meaning Generation Test, Metaphoric Triad Test, Novel Metaphors Test, and Trail Making Test. Hierarchal regression with chronological and mental age, recreational, and cognitively stimulating activities indicated that participation in recreational activities contributed significantly to the explained variance of word fluency. Participation in cognitive activities contributed significantly to the explained variance of most of the crystallized and fluid tests. The findings support the Cognitive Activity Theory in populations with ID. The findings also support the Compensation Age Theory: not only endogenous factors (age, etiology, IQ level), but also exogenous factors such as life style determining the cognitive functioning of adults with ID. However, frequency and the cognitive load of the activities influenced their cognitive functioning.

  4. No Effect of TETRA Hand Portable Transmission Signals on Human Cognitive Function and Symptoms

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Riddervold, Ingunn Skogstad; Kjærgaard, Søren K.; Pedersen, Gert F.


    Current radio frequency radiation exposure guidelines rest on well-established thermal effects. However, recent research into analogue and digital transmission fields at levels covered by the exposure guidelines has indicated possible detrimental effects on human cognitive performance. To investi......Current radio frequency radiation exposure guidelines rest on well-established thermal effects. However, recent research into analogue and digital transmission fields at levels covered by the exposure guidelines has indicated possible detrimental effects on human cognitive performance....... To investigate this, we conducted a controlled climate chamber study of possible changes in cognitive performance in healthy volunteers exposed to transmission signals from TETRA hand portables (TETRA handsets). The trial deployed a balanced, randomized, double-blinded cross-over design. Performance on different...... paper-and-pencil, auditory and computer-based cognitive tasks was monitored in 53 male volunteers (mean age 36.41 years, SD 8.35) during 45-min exposure to a TETRA handset and sham control signals remotely controlled from a laboratory more than 100 km away. The main cognitive outcome was the Trail...

  5. Measuring cognitive load: performance, mental effort and simulation task complexity. (United States)

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


    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.

  6. Association between exposure to work stressors and cognitive performance. (United States)

    Vuori, Marko; Akila, Ritva; Kalakoski, Virpi; Pentti, Jaana; Kivimäki, Mika; Vahtera, Jussi; Härmä, Mikko; Puttonen, Sampsa


    To examine the association between work stress and cognitive performance. Cognitive performance of a total of 99 women (mean age = 47.3 years) working in hospital wards at either the top or bottom quartiles of job strain was assessed using validated tests that measured learning, short-term memory, and speed of memory retrieval. The high job strain group (n = 43) had lower performance than the low job strain group (n = 56) in learning (P = 0.025), short-term memory (P = 0.027), and speed of memory retrieval (P = 0.003). After controlling for education level, only the difference in speed of memory retrieval remained statistically significant (P = 0.010). The association found between job strain and speed of memory retrieval might be one important factor explaining the effect of stress on work performance.

  7. The Impact of Motion Induced Interruptions on Cognitive Performance (United States)


    found that even participants presenting with minor physiological effects of motion experienced a decline in multitasking performance. Further, Yu...literature has investigated the impact of task based interruptions such as being inter- rupted by a phone call or writing an email . In these...Engineers Journal. 102 (2) 65-72. Matsangas, P. (2013). The Effect of Mild Motion Sickness and Sopite Syndrome on Multitasking Cognitive Performance


    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    E. Saraniya


    Full Text Available Cognitive radio (CR technology allows the unlicensed user to access the licensed spectrum bands. Spectrum sensing is an essential function in cognitive radio to detect the spectrum holes and opportunistically use the underutilized frequency bands without causing interference to primary user (PU. In this paper we are maximizing the throughput capacity of cognitive radio user and hence the performance of spectrum sensing and protection to licensed user improves over a wideband spectrum sensing band. The simulation of cognitive radio is done by analyzing the performance of energy detector spectrum sensing technique to detect primary user and to formulate the optimization using multiband joint detection method (MJD to achieve suitable trade- off between secondary user access and primary user network. The main aim of this paper is to maximize the probability of detection and to decrease the probabilities of miss detection and false alarm. To maximize the throughput it requires minimizing the throughput loss caused by miss detection and the significant reduction in probability of false alarm helps in achieving the spectral efficiency from the secondary user’s perspective. The simulation results show that the performance increases with the MJD method.

  9. Associations of job demands and intelligence with cognitive performance among men in late life. (United States)

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


    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.

  10. Modeling cognition dynamics and its application to human reliability analysis

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Mosleh, A.; Smidts, C.; Shen, S.H.


    For the past two decades, a number of approaches have been proposed for the identification and estimation of the likelihood of human errors, particularly for use in the risk and reliability studies of nuclear power plants. Despite the wide-spread use of the most popular among these methods, their fundamental weaknesses are widely recognized, and the treatment of human reliability has been considered as one of the soft spots of risk studies of large technological systems. To alleviate the situation, new efforts have focused on the development of human reliability models based on a more fundamental understanding of operator response and its cognitive aspects

  11. Systemic Cognition: Human Artifice in Life and Language

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Cowley, Stephen; Vallée-Tourangeau, Frédéric


    Rather than rely on functionalist or enactivist principles, Cognition Beyond the Brain traces thinking to human artifice. In pursuing this approach, we gradually developed what can be deemed a third position in cognitive science. This is because, like talking, doing things with artefacts draws...... on both biological and cultural principles. On this systemic view, skills embody beliefs, roles and social practices. Since people rely on interactivity or sense-saturated coordination, action also re-enacts cultural history. Bidirectional dynamics connect embodiment to non-local regularities. Thinking...... simulation to manage thought, feeling and action. The systemic nature of cognition connects now, the adjacent possible, implications for others and, potentially, social and environmental change....

  12. Human performance assessment: methods and measures

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Andresen, Gisle; Droeivoldsmo, Asgeir


    The Human Error Analysis Project (HEAP) was initiated in 1994. The aim of the project was to acquire insights on how and why cognitive errors occur when operators are engaged in problem solving in advanced integrated control rooms. Since human error had not been studied in the HAlden Man-Machine LABoratory (HAMMLAB) before, it was also necessary to carry out research in methodology. In retrospect, it is clear that much of the methodological work is relevant to human-machine research in general, and not only to research on human error. The purpose of this report is, therefore, to give practitioners and researchers an overview of the methodological parts of HEAP. The scope of the report is limited to methods used throughout the data acquisition process, i.e., data-collection methods, data-refinement methods, and measurement methods. The data-collection methods include various types of verbal protocols, simulator logs, questionnaires, and interviews. Data-refinement methods involve different applications of the Eyecon system, a flexible data-refinement tool, and small computer programs used for rearranging, reformatting, and aggregating raw-data. Measurement methods involve assessment of diagnostic behaviour, erroneous actions, complexity, task/system performance, situation awareness, and workload. The report concludes that the data-collection methods are generally both reliable and efficient. The data-refinement methods, however, should be easier to use in order to facilitate explorative analyses. Although the series of experiments provided an opportunity for measurement validation, there are still uncertainties connected to several measures, due to their reliability still being unknown. (Author). 58 refs.,7 tabs

  13. Diet-Induced Ketosis Improves Cognitive Performance in Aged Rats (United States)

    Xu, Kui; Sun, Xiaoyan; Eroku, Bernadette O.; Tsipis, Constantinos P.; Puchowicz, Michelle A.; LaManna, Joseph C.


    Aging is associated with increased susceptibility to hypoxic/ischemic insult and declines in behavioral function which may be due to attenuated adaptive/defense responses. We investigated if diet-induced ketosis would improve behavioral performance in the aged rats. Fischer 344 rats (3- and 22-month-old) were fed standard (STD) or ketogenic (KG) diet for 3 weeks and then exposed to hypobaric hypoxia. Cognitive function was measured using the T-maze and object recognition tests. Motor function was measured using the inclined-screen test. Results showed that KG diet significantly increased blood ketone levels in both young and old rats. In the aged rats, the KG diet improved cognitive performance under normoxic and hypoxic conditions; while motor performance remained unchanged. Capillary density and HIF-1α levels were elevated in the aged ketotic group independent of hypoxic challenge. These data suggest that diet-induced ketosis may be beneficial in the treatment of neurodegenerative conditions. PMID:20204773

  14. Research on cognitive reliability model for main control room considering human factors in nuclear power plants

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Jiang Jianjun; Zhang Li; Wang Yiqun; Zhang Kun; Peng Yuyuan; Zhou Cheng


    Facing the shortcomings of the traditional cognitive factors and cognitive model, this paper presents a Bayesian networks cognitive reliability model by taking the main control room as a reference background and human factors as the key points. The model mainly analyzes the cognitive reliability affected by the human factors, and for the cognitive node and influence factors corresponding to cognitive node, a series of methods and function formulas to compute the node cognitive reliability is proposed. The model and corresponding methods can be applied to the evaluation of cognitive process for the nuclear power plant operators and have a certain significance for the prevention of safety accidents in nuclear power plants. (authors)

  15. Human-Robot Teams Informed by Human Performance Moderator Functions (United States)


    performance factors that affect the ability of a human to drive at night, which includes the eyesight of the driver, the fatigue level of the driver...where human factors are factors that affect the performance of an individual. 7 for human interaction. For instance, they explain the various human... affecting trust in human-robot interaction. Human Factors 53(5), 517-527 (2001) 35. Hart, S. G. and Staveland, L. E. Development of NASA-TLX (Task

  16. Positive associations between physical and cognitive performance measures in fibromyalgia. (United States)

    Cherry, Barbara J; Zettel-Watson, Laura; Chang, Jennifer C; Shimizu, Renee; Rutledge, Dana N; Jones, C Jessie


    To investigate the associations between perceived physical function (self-report) and physical and cognitive performance (objective assessments) in persons with fibromyalgia (FM). Correlational study. Exercise testing laboratory in Southern California. Community-residing ambulatory adults meeting the American College of Rheumatology 1990 criteria for FM (N=68; mean age, 59.5y). Not applicable. Composite Physical Function scale, Senior Fitness Test (3 items), Fullerton Advanced Balance scale, 30-foot walk, Trail Making Test parts A and B, Digit Symbol Substitution Test, a composite score of these 3 cognitive measures, attention/executive function composite, processing speed composite, problem solving, inhibition, and episodic memory composite. Hierarchical regression analyses showed that after controlling for age and FM symptoms, better physical performance (based on assessments, not self-report) was associated with higher cognitive function in attention/executive function, processing speed, problem solving, and inhibition. Researchers should continue to investigate the relationship between physical and cognitive function in both clinical and nonclinical populations, as well as explore changes across time. Because physical activity has been associated with neural improvements, further research may identify whether particular mechanisms, such as neurogenesis, synaptogenesis, or changes in inflammatory marker levels, are involved. Copyright © 2012 American Congress of Rehabilitation Medicine. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  17. Human Behavior and Cognition in Evolutionary Economics. (United States)

    Nelson, Richard R


    My brand of evolutionary economics recognizes, highlights, that modern economies are always in the process of changing, never fully at rest, with much of the energy coming from innovation. This perspective obviously draws a lot from Schumpeter. Continuing innovation, and the creative destruction that innovation engenders, is driving the system. There are winners and losers in the process, but generally the changes can be regarded as progress. The processes through which economic activity and performance evolve has a lot in common with evolution in biology. In particular, at any time the economy is marked by considerable variety, there are selection forces winnowing on that variety, but also continuing emergence of new ways of doing things and often economic actors. But there also are important differences from biological evolution. In particular, both innovation and selection are to a considerable degree purposive activities, often undertaken on the basis of relatively strong knowledge.

  18. Copolymer-1 enhances cognitive performance in young adult rats (United States)

    Meneses, Alfredo; Cruz-Martínez, Yolanda; Anaya-Jiménez, Rosa María; Liy-Salmerón, Gustavo; Carvajal, Horacio Guillermo; Ponce-López, Maria Teresa


    Cognitive impairment is a dysfunction observed as a sequel of various neurodegenerative diseases, as well as a concomitant element in the elderly stages of life. In clinical settings, this malfunction is identified as mild cognitive impairment. Previous studies have suggested that cognitive impairment could be the result of a reduction in the expression of brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) and/or immune dysfunction. Copolymer-1 (Cop-1) is an FDA-approved synthetic peptide capable of inducing the activation of Th2/3 cells, which are able to release BDNF, as well as to migrate and accumulate in the brain. In this study, we evaluated the effect of Cop-1 immunization on improvement of cognition in adult rats. For this purpose, we performed four experiments. We evaluated the effect of Cop-1 immunization on learning/memory using the Morris water maze for spatial memory and autoshaping for associative memory in 3- or 6-month-old rats. BDNF concentrations at the hippocampus were determined by ELISA. Cop-1 immunization induced a significant improvement of spatial memory and associative memory in 6-month-old rats. Likewise, Cop-1 improved spatial memory and associative memory when animals were immunized at 3 months and evaluated at 6 months old. Additionally, Cop-1 induced a significant increase in BDNF levels at the hippocampus. To our knowledge, the present investigation reports the first instance of Cop-1 treatment enhancing cognitive function in normal young adult rats, suggesting that Cop-1 may be a practical therapeutic strategy potentially useful for age- or disease-related cognitive impairment. PMID:29494605

  19. Cognitive Performance during a 24-Hour Cold Exposure Survival Simulation

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Michael J. Taber


    Full Text Available Survivor of a ship ground in polar regions may have to wait more than five days before being rescued. Therefore, the purpose of this study was to explore cognitive performance during prolonged cold exposure. Core temperature (Tc and cognitive test battery (CTB performance data were collected from eight participants during 24 hours of cold exposure (7.5°C ambient air temperature. Participants (recruited from those who have regular occupational exposure to cold were instructed that they could freely engage in minimal exercise that was perceived to maintaining a tolerable level of thermal comfort. Despite the active engagement, test conditions were sufficient to significantly decrease Tc after exposure and to eliminate the typical 0.5–1.0°C circadian rise and drop in core temperature throughout a 24 h cycle. Results showed minimal changes in CTB performance regardless of exposure time. Based on the results, it is recommended that survivors who are waiting for rescue should be encouraged to engage in mild physical activity, which could have the benefit of maintaining metabolic heat production, improve motivation, and act as a distractor from cold discomfort. This recommendation should be taken into consideration during future research and when considering guidelines for mandatory survival equipment regarding cognitive performance.

  20. Linking human factors to corporate strategy with cognitive mapping techniques. (United States)

    Village, Judy; Greig, Michael; Salustri, Filippo A; Neumann, W Patrick


    For human factors (HF) to avoid being considered of "side-car" status, it needs to be positioned within the organization in such a way that it affects business strategies and their implementation. Tools are needed to support this effort. This paper explores the feasibility of applying a technique from operational research called cognitive mapping to link HF to corporate strategy. Using a single case study, a cognitive map is drawn to reveal the complex relationships between human factors and achieving an organization's strategic goals. Analysis of the map for central concepts and reinforcing loops enhances understanding that can lead to discrete initiatives to facilitate integration of HF. It is recommended that this technique be used with senior managers to understand the organizations` strategic goals and enhance understanding of the potential for HF to contribute to the strategic goals.

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

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


    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.

  2. Does sleep deprivation impair orthopaedic surgeons' cognitive and psychomotor performance? (United States)

    O'Brien, Michael J; O'Toole, Robert V; Newell, Mary Zadnik; Lydecker, Alison D; Nascone, Jason; Sciadini, Marcus; Pollak, Andrew; Turen, Clifford; Eglseder, W Andrew


    Sleep deprivation may slow reaction time, cloud judgment, and impair the ability to think. Our purpose was to study the cognitive and psychomotor performances of orthopaedic trauma surgeons on the basis of the amount of sleep that they obtained. We prospectively studied the performances of thirty-two orthopaedic trauma surgeons (residents, fellows, and attending surgeons) over two four-week periods at an urban academic trauma center. Testing sessions used handheld computers to administer validated cognitive and psychomotor function tests. We conducted a multivariate analysis to examine the independent association between test performance and multiple covariates, including the amount of sleep the night before testing. Our analysis demonstrated that orthopaedic surgeons who had slept four hours or less the night before the test had 1.43 times the odds (95% confidence interval, 1.04 to 1.95; p = 0.03) of committing at least one error on an individual test compared with orthopaedic surgeons who had slept more than four hours the previous night. The Running Memory test, which assesses sustained attention, concentration, and working memory, was most sensitive to deterioration in performance in participants who had had four hours of sleep or less; when controlling for other covariates, the test demonstrated a 72% increase in the odds of making at least one error (odds ratio, 1.72 [95% confidence interval, 1.02 to 2.90]; p = 0.04). No significant decrease in performance with sleep deprivation was shown with the other three tests. Orthopaedic trauma surgeons showed deterioration in performance on a validated cognitive task when they had slept four hours or less the previous night. It is unknown how performance on this test relates to surgical performance.

  3. Children's biological responsivity to acute stress predicts concurrent cognitive performance. (United States)

    Roos, Leslie E; Beauchamp, Kathryn G; Giuliano, Ryan; Zalewski, Maureen; Kim, Hyoun K; Fisher, Philip A


    Although prior research has characterized stress system reactivity (i.e. hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal axis, HPAA; autonomic nervous system, ANS) in children, it has yet to examine the extent to which biological reactivity predicts concurrent goal-directed behavior. Here, we employed a stressor paradigm that allowed concurrent assessment of both stress system reactivity and performance on a speeded-response task to investigate the links between biological reactivity and cognitive function under stress. We further investigated gender as a moderator given previous research suggesting that the ANS may be particularly predictive of behavior in males due to gender differences in socialization. In a sociodemographically diverse sample of young children (N = 58, M age = 5.38 yrs; 44% male), individual differences in sociodemographic covariates (age, household income), HPAA (i.e. cortisol), and ANS (i.e. respiratory sinus arrhythmia, RSA, indexing the parasympathetic branch; pre-ejection period, PEP, indexing the sympathetic branch) function were assessed as predictors of cognitive performance under stress. We hypothesized that higher income, older age, and greater cortisol reactivity would be associated with better performance overall, and flexible ANS responsivity (i.e. RSA withdrawal, PEP shortening) would be predictive of performance for males. Overall, females performed better than males. Two-group SEM analyses suggest that, for males, greater RSA withdrawal to the stressor was associated with better performance, while for females, older age, higher income, and greater cortisol reactivity were associated with better performance. Results highlight the relevance of stress system reactivity to cognitive performance under stress. Future research is needed to further elucidate for whom and in what situations biological reactivity predicts goal-directed behavior.

  4. Associationism and cognition: human contingency learning at 25. (United States)

    Shanks, David R


    A major topic within human learning, the field of contingency judgement, began to emerge about 25 years ago following publication of an article on depressive realism by Alloy and Abramson (1979). Subsequently, associationism has been the dominant theoretical framework for understanding contingency learning but this has been challenged in recent years by an alternative cognitive or inferential approach. This article outlines the key conceptual differences between these approaches and summarizes some of the main methods that have been employed to distinguish between them.

  5. Performance analysis of Cognitive Pilot Channel in wireless Heterogeneous networks


    Hussein, Tahseen Ali


    This thesis aims to investigate and analyze the performance of the Cognitive Pilot Channel (CPC) in heterogeneous network. The thesis uses simulation to simulate the environment and the scenarios and by using this simulation, the analysis is done. First task this thesis carrying is the validation the simulation results with the numerical results. This is done by introducing a single cell scenario and validates the results out of this scenario with the numerical calculation. Ana...

  6. Operational human performance reliability assessment (OHPRA)

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Haas, P.M.; Swanson, P.J.; Connelly, E.M.


    Operational Human Performance Reliability Assessment (OHPRA) is an approach for assessing human performance that is being developed in response to demands from modern process industries for practical and effective tools to assess and improve human performance, and therefore overall system performance and safety. The single most distinguishing feature of the approach is that is defines human performance in open-quotes operationalclose quotes terms. OHPRA is focused not on generation of human error probabilities, but on practical analysis of human performance to aid management in (1) identifying open-quotes fixableclose quotes problems and (2) providing input on the importance and nature of potential improvements. Development of the model in progress uses a unique approach for eliciting expert strategies for assessing performance. A PC-based model incorporating this expertise is planned. A preliminary version of the approach has already been used successfully to identify practical human performance problems in reactor and chemical process plant operations

  7. Cognitive performance of juvenile monkeys after chronic fluoxetine treatment. (United States)

    Golub, Mari S; Hackett, Edward P; Hogrefe, Casey E; Leranth, Csaba; Elsworth, John D; Roth, Robert H


    Potential long term effects on brain development are a concern when drugs are used to treat depression and anxiety in childhood. In this study, male juvenile rhesus monkeys (three-four years of age) were dosed with fluoxetine or vehicle (N=16/group) for two years. Histomorphometric examination of cortical dendritic spines conducted after euthanasia at one year postdosing (N=8/group) suggested a trend toward greater dendritic spine synapse density in prefrontal cortex of the fluoxetine-treated monkeys. During dosing, subjects were trained for automated cognitive testing, and evaluated with a test of sustained attention. After dosing was discontinued, sustained attention, recognition memory and cognitive flexibility were evaluated. Sustained attention was affected by fluoxetine, both during and after dosing, as indexed by omission errors. Response accuracy was not affected by fluoxetine in post-dosing recognition memory and cognitive flexibility tests, but formerly fluoxetine-treated monkeys compared to vehicle controls had more missed trial initiations and choices during testing. Drug treatment also interacted with genetic and environmental variables: MAOA genotype (high- and low transcription rate polymorphisms) and testing location (upper or lower tier of cages). Altered development of top-down cortical regulation of effortful attention may be relevant to this pattern of cognitive test performance after juvenile fluoxetine treatment. Copyright © 2017 The Authors. Published by Elsevier Ltd.. All rights reserved.

  8. Academic outcomes and cognitive performance in problematic Internet users. (United States)

    Marín Vila, María; Carballo Crespo, José Luis; Coloma Carmona, Ainhoa


    Only few studies have examined the relationship between problematic Internet use (PIU) and cognitive and academic performance in adolescents. The aim of this study was to analyze the differences in academic and cognitive performance (perception, attention, memory, verbal fluency and abstract reasoning) between adolescents with and without PIU. A total of 575 students from different high schools of the region of Alicante participated. Students were divided into two groups: adolescents with and without PIU (PIU and NPIU, respectively). Several questionnaires were administered to assess problematic Internet use, as well as students' academic performance. Substance use (alcohol / cannabis) was also assessed as exclusion criteria. A battery of neuropsychological tests was used to assess cognitive abilities. On the one hand, PIU users group obtained poorer academic results than NPIU, in terms of lower marks and more failed subjects. On the other hand, PIU group had a better hit ratio in the perception test than NPIU group. However, PIU adolescents got higher error rates for the abstract reasoning test. This greater number of errors, plus a similar number of hits compared to the NPIU group, could indicated a higher response rate for the PIU group, which may might be associated with greater impulsivity. As occurs in other addictive and non-substance-related problems studies, these results could mean difficulties in impulse control and regulation of response inhibition circuits in PIU users group. Future research is needed to analyze in depth the results presented in this paper.

  9. Stability of cognitive performance in children with mild intellectual disability. (United States)

    Jenni, Oskar G; Fintelmann, Sylvia; Caflisch, Jon; Latal, Beatrice; Rousson, Valentin; Chaouch, Aziz


    Longitudinal studies that have examined cognitive performance in children with intellectual disability more than twice over the course of their development are scarce. We assessed population and individual stability of cognitive performance in a clinical sample of children with borderline to mild non-syndromic intellectual disability. Thirty-six children (28 males, eight females; age range 3-19y) with borderline to mild intellectual disability (Full-scale IQ [FSIQ] 50-85) of unknown origin were examined in a retrospective clinical case series using linear mixed models including at least three assessments with standardized intelligence tests. Average cognitive performance remained remarkably stable over time (high population stability, drop of only 0.38 IQ points per year, standard error=0.39, p=0.325) whereas individual stability was at best moderate (intraclass correlation of 0.58), indicating that about 60% of the residual variation in FSIQ scores can be attributed to between-child variability. Neither sex nor socio-economic status had a statistically significant impact on FSIQ. Although intellectual disability during childhood is a relatively stable phenomenon, individual stability of IQ is only moderate, likely to be caused by test-to-test reliability (e.g. level of child's cooperation, motivation, and attention). Therefore, clinical decisions and predictions should not rely on single IQ assessments, but should also consider adaptive functioning and previous developmental history. © 2014 Mac Keith Press.

  10. Effect of alternating postures on cognitive performance for healthy people performing sedentary work. (United States)

    Schwartz, Bernhard; Kapellusch, Jay M; Schrempf, Andreas; Probst, Kathrin; Haller, Michael; Baca, Arnold


    Prolonged sitting is a risk factor for several diseases and the prevalence of worksite-based interventions such as sit-to-stand workstations is increasing. Although their impact on sedentary behaviour has been regularly investigated, the effect of working in alternating body postures on cognitive performance is unclear. To address this uncertainty, 45 students participated in a two-arm, randomised controlled cross-over trial under laboratory conditions. Subjects executed validated cognitive tests (working speed, reaction time, concentration performance) either in sitting or alternating working postures on two separate days ( Identifier: NCT02863731). MANOVA results showed no significant difference in cognitive performance between trials executed in alternating, standing or sitting postures. Perceived workload did not differ between sitting and alternating days. Repeated measures ANOVA revealed significant learning effects regarding concentration performance and working speed for both days. These results suggest that working posture did not affect cognitive performance in the short term. Practitioner Summary: Prior reports indicated health-related benefits based on alternated (sit/stand) body postures. Nevertheless, their effect on cognitive performance is unknown. This randomised controlled trial showed that working in alternating body postures did not influence reaction time, concentration performance, working speed or workload perception in the short term.

  11. Deciphering CAPTCHAs: what a Turing test reveals about human cognition.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Thomas Hannagan

    Full Text Available Turning Turing's logic on its head, we used widespread letter-based Turing Tests found on the internet (CAPTCHAs to shed light on human cognition. We examined the basis of the human ability to solve CAPTCHAs, where machines fail. We asked whether this is due to our use of slow-acting inferential processes that would not be available to machines, or whether fast-acting automatic orthographic processing in humans has superior robustness to shape variations. A masked priming lexical decision experiment revealed efficient processing of CAPTCHA words in conditions that rule out the use of slow inferential processing. This shows that the human superiority in solving CAPTCHAs builds on a high degree of invariance to location and continuous transforms, which is achieved during the very early stages of visual word recognition in skilled readers.

  12. Collective cognition in humans: groups outperform their best members in a sentence reconstruction task.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Romain J G Clément

    Full Text Available Group-living is widespread among animals and one of the major advantages of group-living is the ability of groups to solve cognitive problems that exceed individual ability. Humans also make use of collective cognition and have simultaneously developed a highly complex language to exchange information. Here we investigated collective cognition of human groups regarding language use in a realistic situation. Individuals listened to a public announcement and had to reconstruct the sentence alone or in groups. This situation is often encountered by humans, for instance at train stations or airports. Using recent developments in machine speech recognition, we analysed how well individuals and groups reconstructed the sentences from a syntactic (i.e., the number of errors and semantic (i.e., the quality of the retrieved information perspective. We show that groups perform better both on a syntactic and semantic level than even their best members. Groups made fewer errors and were able to retrieve more information when reconstructing the sentences, outcompeting even their best group members. Our study takes collective cognition studies to the more complex level of language use in humans.

  13. Human body communication performance simulations


    Mufti, H. (Haseeb)


    Abstract Human Body Communication (HBC) is a novel communication method between devices which use human body as a transmission medium. This idea is mostly based on the concept of wireless biomedical monitoring system. The on-body sensor nodes can monitor vital signs of a human body and use the body as a transmission medium. This technology is convenient for long durations of clinical monitoring with the option of more mobil...

  14. The structure of creative cognition in the human brain

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Rex Eugene Jung


    Full Text Available Creativity is a vast construct, seemingly intractable to scientific inquiry – perhaps due to the vague concepts applied to the field of research. One attempt to limit the purview of creative cognition formulates the construct in terms of evolutionary constraints, namely that of blind variation and selective retention (BVSR. Behaviorally, one can limit the blind variation component to idea generation tests as manifested by measures of divergent thinking. The selective retention component can be represented by measures of convergent thinking, as represented by measures of remote associates. We summarize results from measures of creative cognition, correlated with structural neuroimaging measures including structural magnetic resonance imaging (sMRI, Diffusion Tensor Imaging (DTI, and proton magnetic resonance imaging (1H-MRS. We also review lesion studies, considered to be the gold standard of brain-behavioral studies. What emerges is a picture consistent with theories of disinhibitory brain features subserving creative cognition, as described previously (Martindale, 1981. We provide a perspective, involving aspects of the default mode network, which might provide a first approximation regarding how creative cognition might map on to the human brain.

  15. Bike Desks in the Classroom: Energy Expenditure, Physical Health, Cognitive Performance, Brain Functioning, and Academic Performance. (United States)

    Torbeyns, Tine; de Geus, Bas; Bailey, Stephen; Decroix, Lieselot; Van Cutsem, Jeroen; De Pauw, Kevin; Meeusen, Romain


    Physical activity is positively associated with physical health, cognitive performance, brain functioning and academic performance. The aim of this study is to investigate the influence of bike desks in the classroom on adolescents' energy expenditure, physical health, cognitive performance, brain functioning and academic performance. Forty-four adolescents were randomly assigned to control group (CG) or intervention group (IG). During 5 months, the IG used a bike desk for 4 class hours/week. Energy expenditure was measured during 6 consecutive days. Anthropometric parameters, aerobic fitness, academic performance, cognitive performance and brain functioning were assessed before (T0) and after (T1) the intervention. Energy expenditure of the IG was significantly higher during the class hours in which they used the bike desks relative to normal class hours. The CG had a significantly higher BMI at T1 relative to T0 while this was not significantly different for the IG. Aerobic fitness was significantly better in the IG at T1 relative to T0. No significant effects on academic performance cognitive performance and brain functioning were observed. As the implementation of bike desks in the classroom did not interfere with adolescents' academic performance, this can be seen as an effective means of reducing in-class sedentary time and improving adolescents' physical health.

  16. Comparing cognitive performance in illiterate and literate children (United States)

    Matute, Esmeralda; Montiel, Teresita; Pinto, Noemí; Rosselli, Monica; Ardila, Alfredo; Zarabozo, Daniel


    While it is known that the process of becoming literate begins in early childhood and usually involves several years of schooling, research related to cognitive characteristics has been done mostly on illiterate adults, and information concerning illiterate children is therefore limited. The aim of the present study, involving 21 illiterate and 22 literate Mexican children aged 6 to 13, was to investigate the effects of literacy on neuropsychological characteristics during childhood. The children's performance on 16 cognitive domains of the Evaluación Neuropsicológica Infantil (ENI, Child Neuropsychological Assessment) was examined in three mixed within- and between-groups profile analyses. The results suggest that the effect of literacy observed in adults is already evident in children in almost every task analysed. Moreover, the fact that an age effect was detected for the calculation abilities suggests that maths learning is school- and environment-dependent.

  17. Effects of Cogmed working memory training on cognitive performance. (United States)

    Etherton, Joseph L; Oberle, Crystal D; Rhoton, Jayson; Ney, Ashley


    Research on the cognitive benefits of working memory training programs has produced inconsistent results. Such research has frequently used laboratory-specific training tasks, or dual-task n-back training. The current study used the commercial Cogmed Working Memory (WM) Training program, involving several different training tasks involving visual and auditory input. Healthy college undergraduates were assigned to either the full Cogmed training program of 25, 40-min training sessions; an abbreviated Cogmed program of 25, 20-min training sessions; or a no-contact control group. Pretest and posttest measures included multiple measures of attention, working memory, fluid intelligence, and executive functions. Although improvement was observed for the full training group for a digit span task, no training-related improvement was observed for any of the other measures. Results of the study suggest that WM training does not improve performance on unrelated tasks or enhance other cognitive abilities.

  18. Non-visual biological effects of light on human cognition, alertness, and mood (United States)

    Li, Huaye; Wang, Huihui; Shen, Junfei; Sun, Peng; Xie, Ting; Zhang, Siman; Zheng, Zhenrong


    Light exerts non-visual effects on a wide range of biological functions and behavior apart from the visual effect. Light can regulate human circadian rhythms, like the secretion of melatonin and cortisol. Light also has influence on body's physiological parameters, such as blood pressure, heart rate and body temperature. However, human cognitive performance, alertness and mood under different lighting conditions have not been considered thoroughly especially for the complicated visual task like surgical operating procedure. In this paper, an experiment was conducted to investigate the cognition, alertness and mood of healthy participants in a simulated operating room (OR) in the hospital. A LED surgical lamp was used as the light source, which is mixed by three color LEDs (amber, green and blue). The surgical lamp is flexible on both spectrum and intensity. Exposed to different light settings, which are varied from color temperature and luminance, participants were asked to take psychomotor vigilance task (PVT) for alertness measurement, alphabet test for cognitive performance measurement, positive and negative affect schedule (PANAS) for mood measurement. The result showed the participants' cognitive performance, alertness and mood are related to the color temperature and luminance of the LED light. This research will have a guidance for the surgical lighting environment, which can not only enhance doctors' efficiency during the operations, but also create a positive and peaceful surgical lighting environment.

  19. 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


    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

  20. The Impact of Caffeine on Cognitive and Physical Performance and Marksmanship During Sustained Operations

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    McLellan, Tom


    .... It is well documented that sleep loss impairs cognitive performance, and both physical and cognitive performance alone or in combination are critical for the successful outcome across the full...

  1. 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


    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

  2. Performance pressure and caffeine both affect cognitive performance, but likely through independent mechanisms. (United States)

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


    A prevalent combination in daily life, performance pressure and caffeine intake have both been shown to impact people's cognitive performance. Here, we examined the possibility that pressure and caffeine affect cognitive performance via a shared pathway. In an experiment, participants performed a modular arithmetic task. Performance pressure and caffeine intake were orthogonally manipulated. Findings indicated that pressure and caffeine both negatively impacted performance. However, (a) pressure vs. caffeine affected performance on different trial types, and (b) there was no hint of an interactive effect. So, though the evidence is indirect, findings suggest that pressure and caffeine shape performance via distinct mechanisms, rather than a shared one. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  3. Multimodal neural correlates of cognitive control in the Human Connectome Project. (United States)

    Lerman-Sinkoff, Dov B; Sui, Jing; Rachakonda, Srinivas; Kandala, Sridhar; Calhoun, Vince D; Barch, Deanna M


    Cognitive control is a construct that refers to the set of functions that enable decision-making and task performance through the representation of task states, goals, and rules. The neural correlates of cognitive control have been studied in humans using a wide variety of neuroimaging modalities, including structural MRI, resting-state fMRI, and task-based fMRI. The results from each of these modalities independently have implicated the involvement of a number of brain regions in cognitive control, including dorsal prefrontal cortex, and frontal parietal and cingulo-opercular brain networks. However, it is not clear how the results from a single modality relate to results in other modalities. Recent developments in multimodal image analysis methods provide an avenue for answering such questions and could yield more integrated models of the neural correlates of cognitive control. In this study, we used multiset canonical correlation analysis with joint independent component analysis (mCCA + jICA) to identify multimodal patterns of variation related to cognitive control. We used two independent cohorts of participants from the Human Connectome Project, each of which had data from four imaging modalities. We replicated the findings from the first cohort in the second cohort using both independent and predictive analyses. The independent analyses identified a component in each cohort that was highly similar to the other and significantly correlated with cognitive control performance. The replication by prediction analyses identified two independent components that were significantly correlated with cognitive control performance in the first cohort and significantly predictive of performance in the second cohort. These components identified positive relationships across the modalities in neural regions related to both dynamic and stable aspects of task control, including regions in both the frontal-parietal and cingulo-opercular networks, as well as regions

  4. Human preferences for symmetry: subjective experience, cognitive conflict and cortical brain activity.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    David W Evans

    Full Text Available This study examines the links between human perceptions, cognitive biases and neural processing of symmetrical stimuli. While preferences for symmetry have largely been examined in the context of disorders such as obsessive-compulsive disorder and autism spectrum disorders, we examine various these phenomena in non-clinical subjects and suggest that such preferences are distributed throughout the typical population as part of our cognitive and neural architecture. In Experiment 1, 82 young adults reported on the frequency of their obsessive-compulsive spectrum behaviors. Subjects also performed an emotional Stroop or variant of an Implicit Association Task (the OC-CIT developed to assess cognitive biases for symmetry. Data not only reveal that subjects evidence a cognitive conflict when asked to match images of positive affect with asymmetrical stimuli, and disgust with symmetry, but also that their slowed reaction times when asked to do so were predicted by reports of OC behavior, particularly checking behavior. In Experiment 2, 26 participants were administered an oddball Event-Related Potential task specifically designed to assess sensitivity to symmetry as well as the OC-CIT. These data revealed that reaction times on the OC-CIT were strongly predicted by frontal electrode sites indicating faster processing of an asymmetrical stimulus (unparallel lines relative to a symmetrical stimulus (parallel lines. The results point to an overall cognitive bias linking disgust with asymmetry and suggest that such cognitive biases are reflected in neural responses to symmetrical/asymmetrical stimuli.

  5. Roles of Working Memory Performance and Instructional Strategy in Complex Cognitive Task Performance (United States)

    Cevik, V.; Altun, A.


    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…

  6. Human Performance Westinghouse Program; Programa Human Performance de Westinghouse

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Garcia Gutierrez, A.; Gil, C.


    The objective of the Program consists in the excellence actuation, achieving the client success with a perfect realisation project. This program consists of different basic elements to reduce the human mistakes: the HuP tools, coaching, learning clocks and Know website. There is, too, a document file to consult and practice. All these elements are expounded in this paper.

  7. 50-60 Hz electric and magnetic field effects on cognitive function in humans: A review

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Crasson, M.


    This paper reviews the effect of 50-60 Hz weak electric, magnetic and combined electric and magnetic field exposure on cognitive functions such as memory, attention, information processing and time perception, as determined by electroencephalographic methods and performance measures. Overall, laboratory studies, which have investigated the acute effects of power frequency fields on cognitive functioning in humans are heterogeneous, in terms of both electric and magnetic field (EMF) exposure and the experimental design and measures used. Results are inconsistent and difficult to interpret with regard to functional relevance for possible health risks. Statistically significant differences between field and control exposure, when they are found, are small, subtle, transitory, without any clear dose-response relationship and difficult to reproduce. The human performance or event related potentials (ERPs) measures that might specifically be affected by EMF exposure, as well as a possible cerebral structure or function that could be more sensitive to EMF, cannot be better determined. (author)

  8. Development of a Human Performance Evaluation Support System for Human Factors Validation of MCR MMI Design in APR-1400

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Ha, Jun Su; Seong, Poong Hyun


    As CRT-based display and advanced information technology were applied to advanced reactors such as APR-1400 (Advanced Power Reactor-1400), human operators' tasks became more cognitive works. As a results, Human Factors Engineering (HFE) became more important in designing the MCR (Main Control Room) MMI (Man-Machine Interface) of an advanced reactor. According to the Human Factors Engineering Program Review Model, human factors validation of MCR MMI design should be performed through performance-based tests to determine whether it acceptably supports safe operation of the plant. In order to support the evaluation of the performance, a HUman Performance Evaluation Support System (HUPESS) is in development

  9. The Impact of Cognitive Load on Operatic Singers’ Timing Performance.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Muzaffer eCorlu


    Full Text Available In the present paper, we report the results of an empirical study on the effects of cognitive load on operatic singing. The main aim of the study was to investigate to what extent a working memory task affected the timing of operatic singers’ performance. Thereby, we focused on singers’ tendency to speed up, or slow down their performance of musical phrases and pauses. Twelve professional operatic singers were asked to perform an operatic aria three times; once without an additional working memory task, once with a concurrent working memory task (counting shapes on a computer screen, and once with a relatively more difficult working memory task (more shapes to be counted appearing one after another. The results show that, in general, singers speeded up their performance under heightened cognitive load. Interestingly, this effect was more pronounced in pauses – more in particular longer pauses – compared to musical phrases. We discuss the role of sensorimotor control and feedback processes in musical timing to explain these findings.

  10. Firm performance: The role of CEOs' emotional and cognitive characteristics

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kleanthis K. Katsaros


    Full Text Available The paper examines the relationships between CEOs’ personal traits, emotions, attitudes and tolerance of ambiguity; and subsequently, the influence of CEOs’ ambiguity tolerance in firms' performance. Design/methodology/approach – Survey data were collected from 256 ICT firms established in Greece. Their CEOs completed questionnaires examining TOA, personal traits, emotions and attitudes in the workplace. Principal components analysis and ordinary least-squares regressions were used to explore the hypotheses of the paper. Findings – Three factors characterize CEOs' emotions, namely pleasure, dominance and arousal; two factors their involvement, namely importance and interest; and, respectively, one their emotional intelligence namely, empathy/handling relationships. Further, locus of control; importance; arousal; empathy/handling relationships and interest affect decisively CEOs' tolerance of ambiguity, which in turn, seems to influence positively firms' performance. Research limitations/implications – Further research is required in Greek ICT industry regarding the influence of CEOs' emotional and cognitive attributes in organizations' financial performance. Likewise, this research should be expanded to other industries. Originality/value – The originality of this study lies in the finding that emotional and cognitive characteristics affect CEOs' TOA, which, in turn, influences significantly firms' performance. Another significant contributing factor is that the study is carried out in Greece, where few studies have been conducted in this area.

  11. Angiotensin-converting enzyme activity and cognitive impairment during hypoglycaemia in healthy humans

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Pedersen-Bjergaard, Ulrik; Thomsen, Carsten E; Høgenhaven, Hans


    INTRODUCTION: In type 1 diabetes increased risk of severe hypoglycaemia is associated with high angiotensin-converting enzyme (ACE) activity. We tested in healthy humans the hypothesis that this association is explained by the reduced ability of subjects with high ACE activity to maintain normal...... cognitive function during hypoglycaemia. METHODS: Sixteen healthy volunteers selected by either particularly high or low serum ACE activity were subjected to hypoglycaemia (plasma glucose 2.7 mmol/L). Cognitive function was assessed by choice reaction tests. RESULTS: Despite a similar hypoglycaemic stimulus...... in the two groups, only the group with high ACE activity showed significant deterioration in cognitive performance during hypoglycaemia. In the high ACE group mean reaction time (MRT) in the most complex choice reaction task was prolonged and error rate (ER) was increased in contrast to the low ACE group...

  12. Converging Technologies for Improving Human Performance: Integrating From the Nanoscale

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Roco, M.C.; Bainbridge, W.S.


    In the early decades of the twenty-first century, concentrated efforts can unify science based on the unity of nature, thereby advancing the combination of nanotechnology, biotechnology, information technology, and new humane technologies based in cognitive science. Converging technologies integrated from the nanoscale could determine a tremendous improvement in human abilities and societal outcomes. This is a broad, cross cutting, emerging, and timely opportunity of interest to individuals, society, and humanity in the long term.About eighty scientific leaders, industry experts, and policy makers across a range of fields have contributed to develop a vision for the potential to improve human physical, mental, and social capabilities through the convergence of the four technologies. Six major themes have emerged: (a) The broad potential of converging technologies; (b) Expanding human cognition and communication; (c) Improving human health and physical capabilities; (d) Enhancing group and societal outcomes; (e) National security, and (f) Unifying science and education. This article summarizes the observations, conclusions, and recommendations made in the report (Roco and Bainbridge, eds., 2002. Converging Technologies for Improving Human Performance, NSF-DOC Report, June 2002, Arlington VA, USA)

  13. Cognitive genomics: Linking genes to behavior in the human brain

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Genevieve Konopka


    Full Text Available Correlations of genetic variation in DNA with functional brain activity have already provided a starting point for delving into human cognitive mechanisms. However, these analyses do not provide the specific genes driving the associations, which are complicated by intergenic localization as well as tissue-specific epigenetics and expression. The use of brain-derived expression datasets could build upon the foundation of these initial genetic insights and yield genes and molecular pathways for testing new hypotheses regarding the molecular bases of human brain development, cognition, and disease. Thus, coupling these human brain gene expression data with measurements of brain activity may provide genes with critical roles in brain function. However, these brain gene expression datasets have their own set of caveats, most notably a reliance on postmortem tissue. In this perspective, I summarize and examine the progress that has been made in this realm to date, and discuss the various frontiers remaining, such as the inclusion of cell-type-specific information, additional physiological measurements, and genomic data from patient cohorts.

  14. Need for cognition and cognitive performance from a cross-cultural perspective: examples of academic success and solving anagrams. (United States)

    Gülgöz, S


    The cross-cultural validity of the Need for Cognition Scale and its relationship with cognitive performance were investigated in two studies. In the first study, the relationships between the scale and university entrance scores, course grades, study skills, and social desirability were examined. Using the short form of the Turkish version of the Need for Cognition Scale (S. Gülöz & C. J. Sadowski, 1995) no correlation with academic performance was found but there was significant correlation with a study skills scale and a social desirability scale created for this study. When regression analysis was used to predict grade point average, the Need for Cognition Scale was a significant predictor. In the second study, participants low or high in need for cognition solved multiple-solution anagrams. The instructions preceding the task set the participants' expectations regarding task difficulty. An interaction between expectation and need for cognition indicated that participants with low need for cognition performed worse when they expected difficult problems. Results of the two studies showed that need for cognition has cross-cultural validity and that its effect on cognitive performance was mediated by other variables.

  15. Correlation between corpus callosum shape and cognitive performance in healthy young adults. (United States)

    Martín-Loeches, Manuel; Bruner, Emiliano; de la Cuétara, José Manuel; Colom, Roberto


    Corpus callosum (CC) might be related to cognitive performance because of its role in interhemispheric communication. Previous research has focused mainly on volumetric analyses of the CC, yielding contradictory results to some extent. Shape is an approach that integrates and extends the data obtained with the volumetric methodology. Here, we analyze the relationships between midsagittal CC shape variation and several cognitive measures. 2D coordinates from 102 MRI-scanned young adult human CCs were superimposed through a Procrustes approach. The residual variation was regressed onto 21 cognitive measures completed by the participants. Most of these measures (including general intelligence, working memory, executive functioning, and mental speed) were unrelated to midsagittal CC morphology. However, attentional control did show consistent and significant correlations with CC shape variation. Slower responses in attentional control were systematically associated with more curved and thinner CC, with consequent rotation of the splenium and the genu. Although the magnitude of the correlations suggests a small relationship of midsagittal CC geometry and attention, the results provide interesting clues regarding the links between brain anatomical configuration and human cognitive function.

  16. Key Performance Indicators for the Impact of Cognitive Assembly Planning on Ramp-Up Process

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Christian Buescher


    Full Text Available Within the ramp-up phase of highly automated assembly systems, the planning effort forms a large part of production costs. Due to shortening product lifecycles, changing customer demands, and therefore an increasing number of ramp-up processes, these costs even rise. So assembly systems should reduce these efforts and simultaneously be flexible for quick adaption to changes in products and their variants. A cognitive interaction system in the field of assembly planning systems is developed within the Cluster of Excellence “Integrative production technology for high-wage countries” at RWTH Aachen University which integrates several cognitive capabilities according to human cognition. This approach combines the advantages of automation with the flexibility of humans. In this paper the main principles of the system's core component—the cognitive control unit—are presented to underline its advantages with respect to traditional assembly systems. Based on this, the actual innovation of this paper is the development of key performance indicators. These refer to the ramp-up process as a main objective of such a system is to minimize the planning effort during ramp-up. The KPIs are also designed to show the impact on the main idea of the Cluster of Excellence in resolving the so-called Polylemma of Production.

  17. Influence of cognition and symptoms of schizophrenia on IADL performance. (United States)

    Lipskaya, Lena; Jarus, Tal; Kotler, Moshe


    People with schizophrenia experience difficulties with instrumental activities of daily living (IADL), which are required for independent living. Yet, factors that influence IADL performance are still poorly understood. Identification of such factors will contribute to the rehabilitation process and recovery. The present study aimed to examine the influence of cognitive abilities, schizophrenia symptoms, and demographic variables on IADL functioning during acute hospital admission. The participants were 81 adults with DSM-IV chronic schizophrenia. They were assessed on the Revised Observed Tasks of Daily Living (OTDL-R), the Positive and Negative Syndrome Scale (PANSS), the Neurobehavioral Cognitive Status Examination (Cognistat), and the Kitchen Task Assessment (KTA) at acute hospitalization. The prediction model of IADL performance at this time consists of executive functioning (explained 21% of variance), memory and abstract thinking (explained 13.5%), negative symptoms (explained 13%), age of illness onset and years of education (explained 8%). The total explained variance is 53.5%. These results provide evidence-based guidelines for the evaluation process in inpatient settings. Such guidelines are important since planning of intervention processes and appropriate community integration programs often occurs during acute hospitalization, while the structured nature of inpatient settings limits natural variability in occupational performance.

  18. Motor and cognitive performance of overweight preschool children. (United States)

    Krombholz, Heinz


    Gross and fine motor skills and cognitive performance in obese and overweight children were compared to healthy weight children. Participants were 1,543 children (797 boys and 746 girls) ages 43 to 84 months, attending childcare centers in Munich, Germany. According to German Body Mass Index (BMI) standards for age and sex, 4.6% of the children were classified as obese (percentile greater or equal 97), 6.8% as overweight (percentile greater or equal 90 and less than 97), 5.9% as underweight (percentile less than 10), and 83.1% as being of healthy weight. Dependent variables were physical characteristics (height, weight, skinfold thickness), physical fitness (standing broad jump, shuttle run, hanging), body coordination (balancing forward, balancing backward, lateral jump, hopping), manual dexterity (right and left hand), and cognitive performance (intelligence, verbal ability, concentration). Higher proportions of children from lower socioeconomic and immigrant backgrounds were overweight. There was no association between weight and sex. Overweight children showed lower performance on gross motor skills (coordination and fitness), manual dexterity, and intelligence compared to healthy weight children, even after controlling for the effects of social class and immigration status.

  19. UMTS base station-like exposure, well-being, and cognitive performance. (United States)

    Regel, Sabine J; Negovetic, Sonja; Röösli, Martin; Berdiñas, Veronica; Schuderer, Jürgen; Huss, Anke; Lott, Urs; Kuster, Niels; Achermann, Peter


    Radio-frequency electromagnetic fields (RF EMF) of mobile communication systems are widespread in the living environment, yet their effects on humans are uncertain despite a growing body of literature. We investigated the influence of a Universal Mobile Telecommunications System (UMTS) base station-like signal on well-being and cognitive performance in subjects with and without self-reported sensitivity to RF EMF. We performed a controlled exposure experiment (45 min at an electric field strength of 0, 1, or 10 V/m, incident with a polarization of 45 degrees from the left back side of the subject, weekly intervals) in a randomized, double-blind crossover design. A total of 117 healthy subjects (33 self-reported sensitive, 84 nonsensitive subjects) participated in the study. We assessed well-being, perceived field strength, and cognitive performance with questionnaires and cognitive tasks and conducted statistical analyses using linear mixed models. Organ-specific and brain tissue-specific dosimetry including uncertainty and variation analysis was performed. In both groups, well-being and perceived field strength were not associated with actual exposure levels. We observed no consistent condition-induced changes in cognitive performance except for two marginal effects. At 10 V/m we observed a slight effect on speed in one of six tasks in the sensitive subjects and an effect on accuracy in another task in nonsensitive subjects. Both effects disappeared after multiple end point adjustment. In contrast to a recent Dutch study, we could not confirm a short-term effect of UMTS base station-like exposure on well-being. The reported effects on brain functioning were marginal and may have occurred by chance. Peak spatial absorption in brain tissue was considerably smaller than during use of a mobile phone. No conclusions can be drawn regarding short-term effects of cell phone exposure or the effects of long-term base station-like exposure on human health.

  20. 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.


    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

  1. NMDA receptor function during senescence: implication on cognitive performance

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ashok eKumar


    Full Text Available N-methyl-D-aspartate (NMDA receptors, a family of L-glutamate receptors, play an important role in learning and memory, and are critical for spatial memory. These receptors are tetrameric ion channels composed of a family of related subunits. One of the hallmarks of the aging human population is a decline in cognitive function; studies in the past couple of years have demonstrated deterioration in NMDA receptor subunit expression and function with advancing age. However, a direct relationship between impaired memory function and a decline in NMDA receptors is still ambiguous. Recent studies indicate a link between an age-associated NMDA receptor hypofunction and memory impairment and provide evidence that age-associated enhanced oxidative stress might be contributing to the alterations associated with senescence. However, clear evidence is still deficient in demonstrating the underlying mechanisms and a relationship between age-associated impaired cognitive faculties and NMDA receptor hypofunction. The current review intends to present an overview of the research findings regarding changes in expression of various NMDA receptor subunits and deficits in NMDA receptor function during senescence and its implication in age-associated impaired hippocampal-dependent memory function.

  2. Cycling on a Bike Desk Positively Influences Cognitive Performance.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Tine Torbeyns

    Full Text Available Cycling desks as a means to reduce sedentary time in the office has gained interest as excessive sitting has been associated with several health risks. However, the question rises if people will still be as efficient in performing their desk-based office work when combining this with stationary cycling. Therefore, the effect of cycling at 30% Wmax on typing, cognitive performance and brain activity was investigated.After two familiarisation sessions, 23 participants performed a test battery [typing test, Rey auditory verbal learning test (RAVLT, Stroop test and Rosvold continuous performance test (RCPT] with electroencephalography recording while cycling and sitting on a conventional chair.Typing performance, performance on the RAVLT and accuracy on the Stroop test and the RCPT did not differ between conditions. Reaction times on the Stroop test and the RCPT were shorter while cycling relative to sitting (p < 0.05. N200, P300, N450 and conflict SP latency and amplitude on the Stroop test and N200 and P300 on the RCPT did not differ between conditions.This study showed that typing performance and short-term memory are not deteriorated when people cycle at 30% Wmax. Furthermore, cycling had a positive effect on response speed across tasks requiring variable amounts of attention and inhibition.

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jiří Mudrák


    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

  4. Human Performance Resource Center (HPRC) (United States)

    Federal Laboratory Consortium — HPRC is aligned under Force Health Protection and Readiness and is the educational arm of the Consortium for Health and Military Performance (CHAMP) at the Uniformed...

  5. 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


    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...

  6. Human performance modeling for system of systems analytics: combat performance-shaping factors.

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Lawton, Craig R.; Miller, Dwight Peter


    The US military has identified Human Performance Modeling (HPM) as a significant requirement and challenge of future systems modeling and analysis initiatives. To support this goal, Sandia National Laboratories (SNL) has undertaken a program of HPM as an integral augmentation to its system-of-system (SoS) analytics capabilities. The previous effort, reported in SAND2005-6569, evaluated the effects of soldier cognitive fatigue on SoS performance. The current effort began with a very broad survey of any performance-shaping factors (PSFs) that also might affect soldiers performance in combat situations. The work included consideration of three different approaches to cognition modeling and how appropriate they would be for application to SoS analytics. This bulk of this report categorizes 47 PSFs into three groups (internal, external, and task-related) and provides brief descriptions of how each affects combat performance, according to the literature. The PSFs were then assembled into a matrix with 22 representative military tasks and assigned one of four levels of estimated negative impact on task performance, based on the literature. Blank versions of the matrix were then sent to two ex-military subject-matter experts to be filled out based on their personal experiences. Data analysis was performed to identify the consensus most influential PSFs. Results indicate that combat-related injury, cognitive fatigue, inadequate training, physical fatigue, thirst, stress, poor perceptual processing, and presence of chemical agents are among the PSFs with the most negative impact on combat performance.

  7. Human Space Exploration and Human Space Flight: Latency and the Cognitive Scale of the Universe (United States)

    Lester, Dan; Thronson, Harley


    The role of telerobotics in space exploration as placing human cognition on other worlds is limited almost entirely by the speed of light, and the consequent communications latency that results from large distances. This latency is the time delay between the human brain at one end, and the telerobotic effector and sensor at the other end. While telerobotics and virtual presence is a technology that is rapidly becoming more sophisticated, with strong commercial interest on the Earth, this time delay, along with the neurological timescale of a human being, quantitatively defines the cognitive horizon for any locale in space. That is, how distant can an operator be from a robot and not be significantly impacted by latency? We explore that cognitive timescale of the universe, and consider the implications for telerobotics, human space flight, and participation by larger numbers of people in space exploration. We conclude that, with advanced telepresence, sophisticated robots could be operated with high cognition throughout a lunar hemisphere by astronauts within a station at an Earth-Moon Ll or L2 venue. Likewise, complex telerobotic servicing of satellites in geosynchronous orbit can be carried out from suitable terrestrial stations.

  8. Human performance improvement for nuclear power plants

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)


    The IAEA assists NPP operating organizations to improve plant performance through a focus on human performance improvement in areas like organizational and leadership development, senior management decision making, organization and management of HPI programmes including tools needed for effective HPI implementation, safety culture enhancement, knowledge management, personnel selection and staffing, career development, training and development, work design, scheduling and conditions, procedure and other job-aid development and use, effective communications, human performance monitoring, motivation. Many NPP operating organizations in Member States, are not yet achieving the full potential of their NPP technology/equipment regarding safety, operational or economic performance due to human performance weaknesses. The IAEA's HPI (Human Performance Improvement) services provide a means for these organizations to efficiently and effectively learn from international experts and the experiences of others in improving plant performance through human performance improvements. NPP operating organizations can benefit from these services in a number of ways, including requesting a national project, participating in a regional project, or requesting an assist visit. The types of activities provided through these services include assistance in benchmarking practices of successful organizations, providing information exchange and reviews of current practices through assist missions, conducting workshops on focused human performance topics, evaluating current human performance methods, including assistance in implementing self assessment programmes and providing support to safety culture enhancement programmes based on self-assessment

  9. Improving human performance: Industry factors influencing the ability to perform


    Güera Massyn Romo


    Learning interventions and new technologies that aim to improve human performance must take cognisance of industry factors inhibiting human performance. The dynamic and fast pace nature of the Information and Communication Technologies (ICT) and the engineering industries do not lend themselves to proper skills planning and management. These industries experience real skills gaps, to some of which they contribute by themselves. This study reports on these performance-inhibiting factors such a...

  10. Oxytocin modulates human communication by enhancing cognitive exploration. (United States)

    de Boer, Miriam; Kokal, Idil; Blokpoel, Mark; Liu, Rui; Stolk, Arjen; Roelofs, Karin; van Rooij, Iris; Toni, Ivan


    Oxytocin is a neuropeptide known to influence how humans share material resources. Here we explore whether oxytocin influences how we share knowledge. We focus on two distinguishing features of human communication, namely the ability to select communicative signals that disambiguate the many-to-many mappings that exist between a signal's form and meaning, and adjustments of those signals to the presumed cognitive characteristics of the addressee ("audience design"). Fifty-five males participated in a randomized, double-blind, placebo controlled experiment involving the intranasal administration of oxytocin. The participants produced novel non-verbal communicative signals towards two different addressees, an adult or a child, in an experimentally-controlled live interactive setting. We found that oxytocin administration drives participants to generate signals of higher referential quality, i.e. signals that disambiguate more communicative problems; and to rapidly adjust those communicative signals to what the addressee understands. The combined effects of oxytocin on referential quality and audience design fit with the notion that oxytocin administration leads participants to explore more pervasively behaviors that can convey their intention, and diverse models of the addressees. These findings suggest that, besides affecting prosocial drive and salience of social cues, oxytocin influences how we share knowledge by promoting cognitive exploration. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  11. Naturalistic Cognition: A Research Paradigm for Human-Centered Design

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Peter Storkerson


    Full Text Available Naturalistic thinking and knowing, the tacit, experiential, and intuitive reasoning of everyday interaction, have long been regarded as inferior to formal reason and labeled primitive, fallible, subjective, superstitious, and in some cases ineffable. But, naturalistic thinking is more rational and definable than it appears. It is also relevant to design. Inquiry into the mechanisms of naturalistic thinking and knowledge can bring its resources into focus and enable designers to create better, human-centered designs for use in real-world settings. This article makes a case for the explicit, formal study of implicit, naturalistic thinking within the fields of design. It develops a framework for defining and studying naturalistic thinking and knowledge, for integrating them into design research and practice, and for developing a more integrated, consistent theory of knowledge in design. It will (a outline historical definitions of knowledge, attitudes toward formal and naturalistic thinking, and the difficulties presented by the co-presence of formal and naturalistic thinking in design, (b define and contrast formal and naturalistic thinking as two distinct human cognitive systems, (c demonstrate the importance of naturalistic cognition in formal thinking and real-world judgment, (d demonstrate methods for researching naturalistic thinking that can be of use in design, and (e briefly discuss the impact on design theory of admitting naturalistic thinking as valid, systematic, and knowable.

  12. Cyclic Variations in Sustained Human Performance (United States)

    Aue, William R.; Arruda, James E.; Kass, Steven J.; Stanny, Claudia J.


    Biological rhythms play a prominent role in the modulation of human physiology and behavior. [Smith, K., Valentino, D., & Arruda, J. (2003). "Rhythmic oscillations in the performance of a sustained attention task." "Journal of Clinical and Experimental Neuropsychology," 25, 561-570] suggested that sustained human performance may systematically…

  13. Rhythmic Cognition in Humans and Animals: Distinguishing Meter and Pulse Perception

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    W Tecumseh eFitch


    Full Text Available This paper outlines a cognitive and comparative perspective on human rhythmic cognition that emphasizes a key distinction between pulse perception and meter perception. Pulse perception involves the extraction of a regular pulse or 'tactus' from a stream of events. Meter perception involves grouping of events into hierarchical trees with differing levels of 'strength', or perceptual prominence. I argue that metrically-structured rhythms are required to either perform or move appropriately to music (e.g. to dance. Rhythms, from this metrical perspective, constitute 'trees in time'. Rhythmic syntax represents a neglected form of musical syntax, and warrants more thorough neuroscientific investigation. The recent literature on animal entrainment clearly demonstrates the capacity to extract the pulse from rhythmic music, and to entrain periodic movements to this pulse, in several parrot species and a California sea lion, and a more limited ability to do so in one chimpanzee. However, the ability of these or other species to infer hierarchical rhythmic trees remains, for the most part, unexplored (with some apparent negative results from macaques. The results from this new animal comparative research, combined with new methods to explore rhythmic cognition neurally, provide exciting new routes for understanding not just rhythmic cognition, but hierarchical cognition more generally, from a biological and neural perspective.

  14. Multimodality Inferring of Human Cognitive States Based on Integration of Neuro-Fuzzy Network and Information Fusion Techniques

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    P. Bhattacharya


    Full Text Available To achieve an effective and safe operation on the machine system where the human interacts with the machine mutually, there is a need for the machine to understand the human state, especially cognitive state, when the human's operation task demands an intensive cognitive activity. Due to a well-known fact with the human being, a highly uncertain cognitive state and behavior as well as expressions or cues, the recent trend to infer the human state is to consider multimodality features of the human operator. In this paper, we present a method for multimodality inferring of human cognitive states by integrating neuro-fuzzy network and information fusion techniques. To demonstrate the effectiveness of this method, we take the driver fatigue detection as an example. The proposed method has, in particular, the following new features. First, human expressions are classified into four categories: (i casual or contextual feature, (ii contact feature, (iii contactless feature, and (iv performance feature. Second, the fuzzy neural network technique, in particular Takagi-Sugeno-Kang (TSK model, is employed to cope with uncertain behaviors. Third, the sensor fusion technique, in particular ordered weighted aggregation (OWA, is integrated with the TSK model in such a way that cues are taken as inputs to the TSK model, and then the outputs of the TSK are fused by the OWA which gives outputs corresponding to particular cognitive states under interest (e.g., fatigue. We call this method TSK-OWA. Validation of the TSK-OWA, performed in the Northeastern University vehicle drive simulator, has shown that the proposed method is promising to be a general tool for human cognitive state inferring and a special tool for the driver fatigue detection.

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

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Doane, Stephanie


    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...

  16. Performance analysis of underlay cognitive multihop regenerative relaying systems with multiple primary receivers

    KAUST Repository

    Hyadi, Amal; Benjillali, Mustapha; Alouini, Mohamed-Slim; Da Costa, Daniel Benevides Da


    Multihop relaying is an efficient strategy to improve the connectivity and extend the coverage area of secondary networks in underlay cognitive systems. In this work, we provide a comprehensive performance study of cognitive multihop regenerative

  17. Cross-cultural differences in cognitive performance and Spearman's hypothesis : g or c?

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Helms-Lorenz, M; Van de Vijver, FJR; Poortinga, YH


    Common tests of Spearman's hypothesis, according to which performance differences between cultural groups on cognitive tests increase with their g loadings, confound cognitive complexity and verbal-cultural aspects. The present study attempts to disentangle these components. Two intelligence

  18. A mid-layer model for human reliability analysis: understanding the cognitive causes of human failure events

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Shen, Song-Hua; Chang, James Y.H.; Boring, Ronald L.; Whaley, April M.; Lois, Erasmia; Langfitt Hendrickson, Stacey M.; Oxstrand, Johanna H.; Forester, John Alan; Kelly, Dana L.; Mosleh, Ali


    The Office of Nuclear Regulatory Research (RES) at the US Nuclear Regulatory Commission (USNRC) is sponsoring work in response to a Staff Requirements Memorandum (SRM) directing an effort to establish a single human reliability analysis (HRA) method for the agency or guidance for the use of multiple methods. As part of this effort an attempt to develop a comprehensive HRA qualitative approach is being pursued. This paper presents a draft of the method's middle layer, a part of the qualitative analysis phase that links failure mechanisms to performance shaping factors. Starting with a Crew Response Tree (CRT) that has identified human failure events, analysts identify potential failure mechanisms using the mid-layer model. The mid-layer model presented in this paper traces the identification of the failure mechanisms using the Information-Diagnosis/Decision-Action (IDA) model and cognitive models from the psychological literature. Each failure mechanism is grouped according to a phase of IDA. Under each phase of IDA, the cognitive models help identify the relevant performance shaping factors for the failure mechanism. The use of IDA and cognitive models can be traced through fault trees, which provide a detailed complement to the CRT.

  19. A Mid-Layer Model for Human Reliability Analysis: Understanding the Cognitive Causes of Human Failure Events

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Stacey M. L. Hendrickson; April M. Whaley; Ronald L. Boring; James Y. H. Chang; Song-Hua Shen; Ali Mosleh; Johanna H. Oxstrand; John A. Forester; Dana L. Kelly; Erasmia L. Lois


    The Office of Nuclear Regulatory Research (RES) is sponsoring work in response to a Staff Requirements Memorandum (SRM) directing an effort to establish a single human reliability analysis (HRA) method for the agency or guidance for the use of multiple methods. As part of this effort an attempt to develop a comprehensive HRA qualitative approach is being pursued. This paper presents a draft of the method’s middle layer, a part of the qualitative analysis phase that links failure mechanisms to performance shaping factors. Starting with a Crew Response Tree (CRT) that has identified human failure events, analysts identify potential failure mechanisms using the mid-layer model. The mid-layer model presented in this paper traces the identification of the failure mechanisms using the Information-Diagnosis/Decision-Action (IDA) model and cognitive models from the psychological literature. Each failure mechanism is grouped according to a phase of IDA. Under each phase of IDA, the cognitive models help identify the relevant performance shaping factors for the failure mechanism. The use of IDA and cognitive models can be traced through fault trees, which provide a detailed complement to the CRT.

  20. Effects of Cognitive Training on Cognitive Performance of Healthy Older Adults. (United States)

    Golino, Mariana Teles Santos; Flores Mendoza, Carmen; Golino, Hudson Fernandes


    The purpose of this study was to determine the immediate effects of cognitive training on healthy older adults and verify the transfer effects of targeted and non-targeted abilities. The design consisted of a semi-randomized clinical controlled trial. The final sample was composed of 80 volunteers recruited from a Brazilian community (mean age = 69.69; SD = 7.44), which were separated into an intervention group (N = 47; mean age = 69.66, SD = 7.51) and a control group (N = 33; mean age = 69.73, SD = 7.45). Intervention was characterized by adaptive cognitive training with 12 individual training sessions of 60 to 90 minutes (once a week). Eight instruments were used to assess effects of cognitive training. Five were used to assess trained abilities (near effects), including: Memorization Tests (List and History), Picture Completion, Digit Span, Digit Symbol-Coding, and Symbol Search (the last four from WAIS-III). Two instruments assessed untrained abilities (far effects): Arithmetic and Matrix Reasoning (WAIS-III). The non-parametric repeated measures ANOVA test revealed a significant interaction between group by time interaction for Picture Completion [F(74) = 14.88, p = .0002, d = 0.90, CLES = 73.69%], Digit Symbol-Coding [F(74) = 5.66, p = .019, d = 0.55, CLES = 65.21%] and Digit Span [F(74) = 5.38, p = .02, d = 0.54, CLES = 64.85%], suggesting an interventional impact on these performance tasks. The results supported near transfer effects, but did not demonstrate a far transfer effects.

  1. Effect of Vinpocetine (Cognitol™) on Cognitive Performances of a ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    patients compared with age, sex and level of education matched 56 controls. Cognitive ... stigmatized disorder that is often complicated by memory impairments, attention deficits and ..... Selective improvement based on the severity of cognitive ...

  2. Angiotensin I - Converting Enzyme (ACE) gene polymorphism in relation to physical performance, cognition and survival

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Frederiksen, Henrik; Gaist, David; Bathum, Lise


    Studies of younger individuals have suggested an association between ACE genotype and physical and cognitive performance. Using a longitudinal study of elderly twins we studied the association between ACE genotype and physical and cognitive functioning and survival in old age.......Studies of younger individuals have suggested an association between ACE genotype and physical and cognitive performance. Using a longitudinal study of elderly twins we studied the association between ACE genotype and physical and cognitive functioning and survival in old age....

  3. Emotional stability components of human performance problems

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Wexler, R.H.


    Over half of all significant events that occur in nuclear plants involve human performance problems. There is increasing worldwide recognition that human performance problems have a significant impact on the safety, cost, and efficiency of nuclear plant operations. Emotional stability components have an important direct and indirect impact on human performance problems. This paper examines emotional stability components that are currently incorporated into human performance evaluation systems (HPES) in nuclear plants. It describes HPES programs being developed around the world, the emotional stability components that are currently referred to in these programs, and suggestions for improving HPES programs through a greater understanding of emotion stability components. A review of emotional stability components that may hinder or promote a plant environment that encourages the voluntary reporting and correction of human error is also presented

  4. Developing Human Performance Measures (PSAM8)

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Jeffrey C. Joe


    Through the reactor oversight process (ROP), the U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) monitors the performance of utilities licensed to operate nuclear power plants. The process is designed to assure public health and safety by providing reasonable assurance that licensees are meeting the cornerstones of safety and designated crosscutting elements. The reactor inspection program, together with performance indicators (PIs), and enforcement activities form the basis for the NRC's risk-informed, performance based regulatory framework. While human performance is a key component in the safe operation of nuclear power plants and is a designated cross-cutting element of the ROP, there is currently no direct inspection or performance indicator for assessing human performance. Rather, when human performance is identified as a substantive cross cutting element in any 1 of 3 categories (resources, organizational or personnel), it is then evaluated for common themes to determine if follow-up actions are warranted. However, variability in human performance occurs from day to day, across activities that vary in complexity, and workgroups, contributing to the uncertainty in the outcomes of performance. While some variability in human performance may be random, much of the variability may be attributed to factors that are not currently assessed. There is a need to identify and assess aspects of human performance that relate to plant safety and to develop measures that can be used to successfully assure licensee performance and indicate when additional investigation may be required. This paper presents research that establishes a technical basis for developing human performance measures. In particular, we discuss: (1) how historical data already gives some indication of connection between human performance and overall plant performance, (2) how industry led efforts to measure and model human performance and organizational factors could serve as a data source and basis for a

  5. Cognitive function affects trainability for physical performance in exercise intervention among older adults with mild cognitive impairment. (United States)

    Uemura, Kazuki; Shimada, Hiroyuki; Makizako, Hyuma; Doi, Takehiko; Yoshida, Daisuke; Tsutsumimoto, Kota; Anan, Yuya; Suzuki, Takao


    Although much evidence supports the hypothesis that cognitive function and physical function are interrelated, it is unclear whether cognitive decline with mild cognitive impairment influences trainability of physical performance in exercise intervention. The purpose of this study was to examine the association between cognitive function at baseline and change in physical performance after exercise intervention in older adults with mild cognitive impairment. Forty-four older adults diagnosed with mild cognitive impairment based on the Peterson criteria (mean age 74.8 years) consented to and completed a 6-month twice weekly exercise intervention. The Timed Up and Go (TUG) test was used as a measure of physical performance. The Mini-Mental State Examination (MMSE), Trail Making Test Part B, Geriatric Depression Scale, baseline muscle strength of knee extension, and attendance rate of intervention, were measured as factors for predicting trainability. In the correlation analysis, the change in TUG showed modest correlations with attendance rate in the exercise program (r = -0.354, P = 0.027) and MMSE at baseline (r = -0.321, P = 0.034). A multiple regression analysis revealed that change in TUG was independently associated with attendance rate (β = -0.322, P = 0.026) and MMSE score (β = -0.295, P = 0.041), controlling for age and gender. General cognitive function was associated with improvements in physical performance after exercise intervention in subjects with mild cognitive impairment. Further research is needed to examine the effects of exercise programs designed to address cognitive obstacles in older adults with mild cognitive impairment.

  6. Analysis of human performance in KHNP NPPs

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Tae, Sung Eun


    The most important thing in the management of nuclear power plant is safety. One of the key factors to enhance the safety is to analyze human performance and to reflect the results on the practical plant operation. KHNP NPPs experienced human errors in the fields of operation and maintenance. The human errors need to be analyzed and, necessary corrective actions according to the causes should be made to prevent the same event or similar events. Therefore we'd like to introduce the procedure of K-HPES(KHNP-Human Performance Enhancement System) and the results of analysis of HPES reports produced in 2002 and 2003

  7. Segregation of the human medial prefrontal cortex in social cognition

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Danilo eBzdok


    Full Text Available While the human medial prefrontal cortex (mPFC is widely believed to be a key node of neural networks relevant for socio-emotional processing, its functional subspecialization is still poorly understood. We thus revisited the often assumed differentiation of the mPFC in social cognition along its ventral-dorsal axis. Our neuroinformatic analysis was based on a neuroimaging meta-analysis of perspective-taking that yielded two separate clusters in the ventral and dorsal mPFC, respectively. We determined each seed region’s brain-wide interaction pattern by two complementary measures of functional connectivity: co-activation across a wide range of neuroimaging studies archived in the BrainMap database and correlated signal fluctuations during unconstrained (resting cognition. Furthermore, we characterized the functions associated with these two regions using the BrainMap database. Across methods, the ventral mPFC was more strongly connected with the nucleus accumbens, hippocampus, posterior cingulate cortex, and retrosplenial cortex, while the dorsal mPFC was more strongly connected with the inferior frontal gyrus, temporo-parietal junction, and middle temporal gyrus. Further, the ventral mPFC was selectively associated with action execution, olfaction, and reward related tasks, while the dorsal mPFC was selectively associated with perspective-taking and episodic memory retrieval. The ventral mPFC is therefore predominantly involved in sensory-driven, approach/avoidance-modulating, and evaluation-related processing, whereas the dorsal mPFC is predominantly involved in internally driven, memory-informed, and metacognition-related processing in social cognition.

  8. Outage performance of cognitive radio systems with Improper Gaussian signaling

    KAUST Repository

    Amin, Osama


    Improper Gaussian signaling has proved its ability to improve the achievable rate of the systems that suffer from interference compared with proper Gaussian signaling. In this paper, we first study impact of improper Gaussian signaling on the performance of the cognitive radio system by analyzing the outage probability of both the primary user (PU) and the secondary user (SU). We derive exact expression of the SU outage probability and upper and lower bounds for the PU outage probability. Then, we design the SU signal by adjusting its transmitted power and the circularity coefficient to minimize the SU outage probability while maintaining a certain PU quality-of-service. Finally, we evaluate the proposed bounds and adaptive algorithms by numerical results.

  9. The Effects of Hypoxic Hypoxia on Cognitive Performance Decay (United States)


    during the hypoxic phase at all altitudes. Cognitive performance, as measured by the simple and choice reaction tasks, is significantly impacted by...abort a sortie if the SO2 drops below 90%. Given the impact such a small device can potentially have on operational effectiveness, the importance of...b13b15b17h01 h03hD&h07 h09 h11 h13 h15 h17 h18 h21 h23 h26 h27 h28 h31 1� h36 1137 h39h41 ht3h46h4-7 h48 h&1 h53 r1l1 rm rOI5 r07 r01 r11 r13 r16

  10. Balance, Sensorimotor, and Cognitive Performance in Long-Year Expert Senior Ballroom Dancers

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jan-Christoph Kattenstroth


    Full Text Available Physical fitness is considered a major factor contributing to the maintenance of independent living and everyday competence. In line with this notion, it has been shown that several years of amateur dancing experience can exert beneficial effects not only on balance and posture but also on tactile, motor, and cognitive functions in older people. This raises the question of whether an even more extensive schedule of dancing, including competitive tournaments, would further enhance these positive effects. We therefore assessed posture, balance, and reaction times, as well as motor, tactile, and cognitive performance in older expert ballroom dancers with several years of competitive experience. We found substantially better performance in the expert group than in the controls in terms of expertise-related domains like posture, balance, and reaction times. However, there was no generalization of positive effects to those domains that were found to be improved in amateur dancers, such as tactile and cognitive performance, suggesting that there might be an optimal range of intervention intensity to maintain health and independence throughout the human lifespan.

  11. Functional relationship between cognitive representations of movement directions and visuomotor adaptation performance. (United States)

    Lex, Heiko; Weigelt, Matthias; Knoblauch, Andreas; Schack, Thomas


    The aim of our study was to explore whether or not different types of learners in a sensorimotor task possess characteristically different cognitive representations. Participants' sensorimotor adaptation performance was measured with a pointing paradigm which used a distortion of the visual feedback in terms of a left-right reversal. The structure of cognitive representations was assessed using a newly established experimental method, the Cognitive Measurement of Represented Directions. A post hoc analysis revealed inter-individual differences in participants' adaptation performance, and three different skill levels (skilled, average, and poor adapters) have been defined. These differences in performance were correlated with the structure of participants' cognitive representations of movement directions. Analysis of these cognitive representations revealed performance advantages for participants possessing a global cognitive representation of movement directions (aligned to cardinal movement axes), rather than a local representation (aligned to each neighboring direction). Our findings are evidence that cognitive representation structures play a functional role in adaptation performance.

  12. The human hippocampus: cognitive maps or relational memory? (United States)

    Kumaran, Dharshan; Maguire, Eleanor A


    The hippocampus is widely accepted to play a pivotal role in memory. Two influential theories offer competing accounts of its fundamental operating mechanism. The cognitive map theory posits a special role in mapping large-scale space, whereas the relational theory argues it supports amodal relational processing. Here, we pit the two theories against each other using a novel paradigm in which the relational processing involved in navigating in a city was matched with similar navigational and relational processing demands in a nonspatial (social) domain. During functional magnetic resonance imaging, participants determined the optimal route either between friends' homes or between the friends themselves using social connections. Separate brain networks were engaged preferentially during the two tasks, with hippocampal activation driven only by spatial relational processing. We conclude that the human hippocampus appears to have a bias toward the processing of spatial relationships, in accordance with the cognitive map theory. Our results both advance our understanding of the nature of the hippocampal contribution to memory and provide insights into how social networks are instantiated at the neural level.

  13. Action and language integration: from humans to cognitive robots. (United States)

    Borghi, Anna M; Cangelosi, Angelo


    The topic is characterized by a highly interdisciplinary approach to the issue of action and language integration. Such an approach, combining computational models and cognitive robotics experiments with neuroscience, psychology, philosophy, and linguistic approaches, can be a powerful means that can help researchers disentangle ambiguous issues, provide better and clearer definitions, and formulate clearer predictions on the links between action and language. In the introduction we briefly describe the papers and discuss the challenges they pose to future research. We identify four important phenomena the papers address and discuss in light of empirical and computational evidence: (a) the role played not only by sensorimotor and emotional information but also of natural language in conceptual representation; (b) the contextual dependency and high flexibility of the interaction between action, concepts, and language; (c) the involvement of the mirror neuron system in action and language processing; (d) the way in which the integration between action and language can be addressed by developmental robotics and Human-Robot Interaction. Copyright © 2014 Cognitive Science Society, Inc.

  14. Enabling Robotic Social Intelligence by Engineering Human Social-Cognitive Mechanisms

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Wiltshire, Travis; Warta, Samantha F.; Barber, Daniel


    for artificial cognitive systems. We discuss a recent integrative perspective of social cognition to provide a systematic theoretical underpinning for computational instantiations of these mechanisms. We highlight several commitments of our approach that we refer to as Engineering Human Social Cognition. We...... then provide a series of recommendations to facilitate the development of the perceptual, motor, and cognitive architecture for this proposed artificial cognitive system in future work. For each recommendation, we highlight their relation to the discussed social-cognitive mechanisms, provide the rationale...

  15. Social Cognitive Career Theory, Conscientiousness, and Work Performance: A Meta-Analytic Path Analysis (United States)

    Brown, Steven D.; Lent, Robert W.; Telander, Kyle; Tramayne, Selena


    We performed a meta-analytic path analysis of an abbreviated version of social cognitive career theory's (SCCT) model of work performance (Lent, Brown, & Hackett, 1994). The model we tested included the central cognitive predictors of performance (ability, self-efficacy, performance goals), with the exception of outcome expectations. Results…

  16. "Minding the gap": imagination, creativity and human cognition. (United States)

    Pelaprat, Etienne; Cole, Michael


    Inquiry into the nature of mental images is a major topic in psychology where research is focused on the psychological faculties of imagination and creativity. In this paper, we draw on the work of L.S. Vygotsky to develop a cultural-historical approach to the study of imagination as central to human cognitive processes. We characterize imagination as a process of image making that resolves "gaps" arising from biological and cultural-historical constraints, and that enables ongoing time-space coordination necessary for thought and action. After presenting some basic theoretical considerations, we offer a series of examples to illustrate for the reader the diversity of processes of imagination as image making. Applying our arguments to contemporary digital media, we argue that a cultural-historical approach to image formation is important for understanding how imagination and creativity are distinct, yet inter-penetrating processes.

  17. Structurally-constrained relationships between cognitive states in the human brain.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ann M Hermundstad


    Full Text Available The anatomical connectivity of the human brain supports diverse patterns of correlated neural activity that are thought to underlie cognitive function. In a manner sensitive to underlying structural brain architecture, we examine the extent to which such patterns of correlated activity systematically vary across cognitive states. Anatomical white matter connectivity is compared with functional correlations in neural activity measured via blood oxygen level dependent (BOLD signals. Functional connectivity is separately measured at rest, during an attention task, and during a memory task. We assess these structural and functional measures within previously-identified resting-state functional networks, denoted task-positive and task-negative networks, that have been independently shown to be strongly anticorrelated at rest but also involve regions of the brain that routinely increase and decrease in activity during task-driven processes. We find that the density of anatomical connections within and between task-positive and task-negative networks is differentially related to strong, task-dependent correlations in neural activity. The space mapped out by the observed structure-function relationships is used to define a quantitative measure of separation between resting, attention, and memory states. We find that the degree of separation between states is related to both general measures of behavioral performance and relative differences in task-specific measures of attention versus memory performance. These findings suggest that the observed separation between cognitive states reflects underlying organizational principles of human brain structure and function.

  18. Effects of Extreme Sleep Deprivation on Human Performance

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Tuan Tran; Kimberly R. Raddatz; Elizabeth T. Cady; Bradford Amstutz; Pete D. Elgin; Christopher Vowels; Gerald Deehan


    Sleep is a fundamental recuperative process for the nervous system. Disruption of this homeostatic drive can lead to severe impairments of the operator’s ability to perceive, recognize, and respond to emergencies and/or unanticipated events, putting the operator at risk. Therefore, establishing a comprehensive understanding of how sleep deprivation influences human performance is essential in order to counter fatigue or to develop mitigation strategies. The goal of the present study was to examine the psychological effects of prolonged sleep deprivation (approx. 75 hrs) over a four-day span on a general aviation pilot flying a fixed-based flight simulator. During the study, a series of tasks were employed every four hours in order to examine the pilot’s perceptual and higher level cognitive abilities. Overall, results suggest that the majority of cognitive and perceptual degradation occurs between 30-40 hours into the flight. Limitations and future research directions are also discussed.

  19. Error framing effects on performance: cognitive, motivational, and affective pathways. (United States)

    Steele-Johnson, Debra; Kalinoski, Zachary T


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

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jan Hundertmark


    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.

  1. NASA Human Health and Performance Center (NHHPC) (United States)

    Davis, Jeffery R.


    This slide presentation reviews the purpose, potential members and participants of the NASA Human Health and Performance Center (NHHPC). Included in the overview is a brief description of the administration and current activities of the NHHPC.

  2. Human Resource Orientation and Corporate Performance. (United States)

    Lam, Long W.; White, Louis P.


    A study of 14 manufacturing firms found significantly better financial performance among those that strongly emphasized recruitment, compensation, and training and development (a human resource orientation). Human resource development that helped sustain competence combined with that orientation to form a valuable competitive advantage. (SK)

  3. Temporal relationship between cognitive and physical performance in middle-aged to oldest old people

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Stijntjes, Marjon; Aartsen, Marja J.; Taekema, Diana G.; Gussekloo, Jacobijn; Huisman, Martijn; Meskers, Carel G.M.; De Craen, Anton J.M.; Maier, Andrea B.


    Background: Cognitive and physical impairment frequently co-occur in older people. The aim of this study was to assess the temporal order of these age-related changes in cognitive and physical performance and to assess whether a relationship was different across specific cognitive and physical

  4. Insulin resistance and cognitive performance in type 2 diabetes : The Maastricht study

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Geijselaers, Stefan L C; Sep, Simone J S; Schram, Miranda T; van Boxtel, Martin P J; Henry, Ronald M A; Verhey, Frans R J; Kroon, Abraham A; Schaper, Nicolaas C; Dagnelie, Pieter C; van der Kallen, Carla J H; Stehouwer, Coen D A; Biessels, Geert Jan

    AIMS: Type 2 diabetes, hyperinsulinemia, and insulin resistance are associated with cognitive impairment. Experimental studies indicate that insulin signaling in the brain is related to cognitive performance. Here we evaluated whether insulin-related variables contribute to the variance in cognitive

  5. NASA Human Health and Performance Strategy (United States)

    Davis, Jeffrey R.


    In May 2007, what was then the Space Life Sciences Directorate, issued the 2007 Space Life Sciences Strategy for Human Space Exploration. In January 2012, leadership and key directorate personnel were once again brought together to assess the current and expected future environment against its 2007 Strategy and the Agency and Johnson Space Center goals and strategies. The result was a refined vision and mission, and revised goals, objectives, and strategies. One of the first changes implemented was to rename the directorate from Space Life Sciences to Human Health and Performance to better reflect our vision and mission. The most significant change in the directorate from 2007 to the present is the integration of the Human Research Program and Crew Health and Safety activities. Subsequently, the Human Health and Performance Directorate underwent a reorganization to achieve enhanced integration of research and development with operations to better support human spaceflight and International Space Station utilization. These changes also enable a more effective and efficient approach to human system risk mitigation. Since 2007, we have also made significant advances in external collaboration and implementation of new business models within the directorate and the Agency, and through two newly established virtual centers, the NASA Human Health and Performance Center and the Center of Excellence for Collaborative Innovation. Our 2012 Strategy builds upon these successes to address the Agency's increased emphasis on societal relevance and being a leader in research and development and innovative business and communications practices. The 2012 Human Health and Performance Vision is to lead the world in human health and performance innovations for life in space and on Earth. Our mission is to enable optimization of human health and performance throughout all phases of spaceflight. All HH&P functions are ultimately aimed at achieving this mission. Our activities enable

  6. Human performance interfaces in air traffic control. (United States)

    Chang, Yu-Hern; Yeh, Chung-Hsing


    This paper examines how human performance factors in air traffic control (ATC) affect each other through their mutual interactions. The paper extends the conceptual SHEL model of ergonomics to describe the ATC system as human performance interfaces in which the air traffic controllers interact with other human performance factors including other controllers, software, hardware, environment, and organisation. New research hypotheses about the relationships between human performance interfaces of the system are developed and tested on data collected from air traffic controllers, using structural equation modelling. The research result suggests that organisation influences play a more significant role than individual differences or peer influences on how the controllers interact with the software, hardware, and environment of the ATC system. There are mutual influences between the controller-software, controller-hardware, controller-environment, and controller-organisation interfaces of the ATC system, with the exception of the controller-controller interface. Research findings of this study provide practical insights in managing human performance interfaces of the ATC system in the face of internal or external change, particularly in understanding its possible consequences in relation to the interactions between human performance factors.

  7. Culture-sensitive neural substrates of human cognition: a transcultural neuroimaging approach. (United States)

    Han, Shihui; Northoff, Georg


    Our brains and minds are shaped by our experiences, which mainly occur in the context of the culture in which we develop and live. Although psychologists have provided abundant evidence for diversity of human cognition and behaviour across cultures, the question of whether the neural correlates of human cognition are also culture-dependent is often not considered by neuroscientists. However, recent transcultural neuroimaging studies have demonstrated that one's cultural background can influence the neural activity that underlies both high- and low-level cognitive functions. The findings provide a novel approach by which to distinguish culture-sensitive from culture-invariant neural mechanisms of human cognition.

  8. Cognitive performance of neuromyelitis optica patients: comparison with multiple sclerosis

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sandra Vanotti


    Full Text Available The aim of the present research was to investigate cognitive pattern of patients with neuromyelitis optica (NMO and to compare it with multiple sclerosis (MS patients' performance. Methods: Fourteen NMO, 14 relapsing remitting multiple sclerosis (RRMS, and 14 healthy control patients participated in the investigation. Neuropsychological functions were evaluated with the Brief Repeatable Neuropsychological Battery for MS; Symbol Digit Modalities Test; Digit Span; and Semantic Fluency. Results: Fifty-seven percent of NMO patients and 42.85% of the MS ones had abnormal performance in at least two cognitive tests. The NMO Group showed abnormal performance in verbal fluency, verbal and visual memories, with greater attention deficits. NMO patients outperformed healthy control in the paced auditory serial addition test (PASAT. However, no difference was found between NMO and RRMS patients. Conclusions: The NMO Group showed more dysfunction in attention and verbal fluencies than in verbal and visual memories. When compared with the MS patients, a similar dysfunction pattern was found. O objetivo da presente pesquisa foi investigar o padrão cognitivo de pacientes com neuromielite óptica (NMO e compará-lo com o desempenho de pacientes com esclerose múltipla (EM. Métodos: Quatorze pacientes com NMO, 14 com esclerose múltipla recorrente remitente (EMRR e 14 participantes do Controle saudáveis participaram da presente investigação. As funções neuropsicológicas foram avaliadas com a Bateria Breve de Testes Neuropsicológicos de Rao, Teste Símbolo Digit e a Fluência Semântica. Resultados: Cinquenta e sete por cento dos pacientes com NMO e 42,85% daqueles com EM apresentaram desempenho anormal em pelo menos dois testes cognitivos. O Grupo NMO apresentarou desempenho anormal na fluência verbal e nas memórias visual e verbal, com maiores déficits de atenção. Pacientes com NMO superaram os controles saudáveis em PASAT. No entanto, não foi

  9. Using EEG to Discriminate Cognitive Workload and Performance Based on Neural Activation and Connectivity (United States)


    in memory . Cognitive efficacy is assessed based on accuracy in recalling digits from memory . A Gaussian classifier is used to discriminate cognitive...high) and 2) cognitive performance (correct recall , incorrect recall ). Our paper is organized as follows. In Section 2, the auditory working memory collection is described, which uses a novel cognitive load protocol that taxes auditory working memory by eliciting recall of sentences and

  10. Effects of scopolamine and dextroamphetamine on human performance (United States)

    Schmedtje, John F., Jr.; Oman, Charles M.; Letz, Richard; Baker, Edward L.


    The effects of two drugs used to prevent symptoms of motion sickness in the operational environment were examined in this study of human performance as measured by computer-based tests of cognitive and psychomotor skills. Each subject was exposed repetitively to five tests: symbol-digit substitution, simple reaction time, pattern recognition, digit span memory, and pattern memory. Although there have been previous reports of decreases in human performance in similar testing with higher dosages of scopolamine or dextroamphetamine, no significant decrements were observed with the operational-level combined dose used in this study (0.4 mg oral scopolamine and 5.0 mg oral dextroamphetamine.) The controversy over the use of combination drug therapy in this environnment is discussed along with the indications for further research based on the findings.

  11. Performance Evaluation of Cognitive Interference Channels Using a Spectrum Overlay Strategy (United States)

    Knoblock, Eric J.


    The use of cognitive radios (CR) and cooperative communications techniques may assist in interference mitigation via sensing of the environment and dynamically altering communications parameters through the use of various mechanisms - one of which is the overlay technique. This report provides a performance analysis of an interference channel with a cognitive transceiver operating in an overlay configuration to evaluate the gains from using cognition. As shown in this report, a cognitive transceiver can simultaneously share spectrum while enhancing performance of non-cognitive nodes via knowledge of the communications channel as well as knowledge of neighboring users' modulation and coding schemes.

  12. Physical Performance Is Associated with Working Memory in Older People with Mild to Severe Cognitive Impairment

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    K. M. Volkers


    Full Text Available Background. Physical performances and cognition are positively related in cognitively healthy people. The aim of this study was to examine whether physical performances are related to specific cognitive functioning in older people with mild to severe cognitive impairment. Methods. This cross-sectional study included 134 people with a mild to severe cognitive impairment (mean age 82 years. Multiple linear regression was performed, after controlling for covariates and the level of global cognition, with the performances on mobility, strength, aerobic fitness, and balance as predictors and working memory and episodic memory as dependent variables. Results. The full models explain 49–57% of the variance in working memory and 40–43% of episodic memory. Strength, aerobic fitness, and balance are significantly associated with working memory, explaining 3–7% of its variance, irrespective of the severity of the cognitive impairment. Physical performance is not related to episodic memory in older people with mild to severe cognitive impairment. Conclusions. Physical performance is associated with working memory in older people with cognitive impairment. Future studies should investigate whether physical exercise for increased physical performance can improve cognitive functioning. This trial is registered with NTR1482.

  13. Driving with Mild Cognitive Impairment or Dementia: Cognitive Test Performance and Proxy Report of Daily Life Function in Older Women. (United States)

    Vaughan, Leslie; Hogan, Patricia E; Rapp, Stephen R; Dugan, Elizabeth; Marottoli, Richard A; Snively, Beverly M; Shumaker, Sally A; Sink, Kaycee M


    To investigate associations between proxy report of cognitive and functional limitations and cognitive performance and current or former driving status in older women with mild cognitive impairment (MCI) and all-cause dementia. Cross-sectional data analysis of retrospectively identified older women with adjudicated MCI and all-cause dementia in the Women's Health Initiative Memory Study-Epidemiology of Cognitive Health Outcomes (WHIMS-ECHO). Academic medical center. Women (mean age ± standard deviation 83.7 ± 3.5) adjudicated with MCI or dementia during Year 1, 2, 3, or 4 of the WHIMS-ECHO follow-up period (N = 385). The telephone-administered cognitive battery included tests of attention, verbal learning and memory, verbal fluency, executive function, working memory, and global cognitive function plus self-report measures of depressive symptomatology. The Dementia Questionnaire (DQ) was administered to a knowledgeable proxy (family member, friend). Sixty percent of women with MCI and 40% of those with dementia are current drivers. Proxy reports of functional limitations in instrumental activities of daily living (IADLs) are associated with current driving status in women with MCI, whereas performance-based cognitive tests are not. In women with dementia, proxy reports of functional limitations in IADLs and performance-based cognitive tests are associated with current driving status, as expected. These findings have clinical implications for the importance of evaluating driving concurrently with other instrumental functional abilities in MCI and dementia. Additional work is needed to determine whether proxy report of cognitive and functional impairments should help guide referrals for driving assessment and rehabilitation or counseling for driving transition. © 2015, Copyright the Authors Journal compilation © 2015, The American Geriatrics Society.

  14. An Evolutionary Upgrade of Cognitive Load Theory: Using the Human Motor System and Collaboration to Support the Learning of Complex Cognitive Tasks

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    G.W.C. Paas (Fred); J. Sweller (John)


    textabstractCognitive load theory is intended to provide instructional strategies derived from experimental, cognitive load effects. Each effect is based on our knowledge of human cognitive architecture, primarily the limited capacity and duration of a human working memory. These limitations are

  15. An Evolutionary Upgrade of Cognitive Load Theory: Using the Human Motor System and Collaboration to Support the Learning of Complex Cognitive Tasks (United States)

    Paas, Fred; Sweller, John


    Cognitive load theory is intended to provide instructional strategies derived from experimental, cognitive load effects. Each effect is based on our knowledge of human cognitive architecture, primarily the limited capacity and duration of a human working memory. These limitations are ameliorated by changes in long-term memory associated with…

  16. Longitudinal associations between physical and cognitive performance among community-dwelling older adults. (United States)

    Tolea, Magdalena I; Morris, John C; Galvin, James E


    To assess the directionality of the association between physical and cognitive decline in later life, we compared patterns of decline in performance across groups defined by baseline presence of cognitive and/or physical impairment [none (n = 217); physical only (n = 169); cognitive only (n = 158), or both (n = 220)] in a large sample of participants in a cognitive aging study at the Knight Alzheimer's Disease Research Center at Washington University in St. Louis who were followed for up to 8 years (3,079 observations). Rates of decline reached 20% for physical performance and varied across cognitive tests (global, memory, speed, executive function, and visuospatial skills). We found that physical decline was better predicted by baseline cognitive impairment (slope = -1.22, pphysical impairment not contributing to further decline in physical performance (slope = -0.25, p = 0.294). In turn, baseline physical impairment was only marginally associated with rate of cognitive decline across various cognitive domains. The cognitive-functional association is likely to operate in the direction of cognitive impairment to physical decline although physical impairment may also play a role in cognitive decline/dementia. Interventions to prevent further functional decline and development of disability and complete dependence may benefit if targeted to individuals with cognitive impairment who are at increased risk.

  17. Non-visual effects of light on melatonin, alertness and cognitive performance: can blue-enriched light keep us alert?

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sarah Laxhmi Chellappa

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: Light exposure can cascade numerous effects on the human circadian process via the non-imaging forming system, whose spectral relevance is highest in the short-wavelength range. Here we investigated if commercially available compact fluorescent lamps with different colour temperatures can impact on alertness and cognitive performance. METHODS: Sixteen healthy young men were studied in a balanced cross-over design with light exposure of 3 different light settings (compact fluorescent lamps with light of 40 lux at 6500K and at 2500K and incandescent lamps of 40 lux at 3000K during 2 h in the evening. RESULTS: Exposure to light at 6500K induced greater melatonin suppression, together with enhanced subjective alertness, well-being and visual comfort. With respect to cognitive performance, light at 6500K led to significantly faster reaction times in tasks associated with sustained attention (Psychomotor Vigilance and GO/NOGO Task, but not in tasks associated with executive function (Paced Visual Serial Addition Task. This cognitive improvement was strongly related with attenuated salivary melatonin levels, particularly for the light condition at 6500K. CONCLUSIONS: Our findings suggest that the sensitivity of the human alerting and cognitive response to polychromatic light at levels as low as 40 lux, is blue-shifted relative to the three-cone visual photopic system. Thus, the selection of commercially available compact fluorescent lights with different colour temperatures significantly impacts on circadian physiology and cognitive performance at home and in the workplace.

  18. Validating cognitive support for operators of complex human-machine systems

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    O'Hara, J.; Wachtel, J.


    Modem nuclear power plants (NPPs) are complex systems whose performance is the result of an intricate interaction of human and system control. A complex system may be defined as one which supports a dynamic process involving a large number of elements that interact in many different ways. Safety is addressed through defense-in-depth design and preplanning; i.e., designers consider the types of failures that are most likely to occur and those of high consequence, and design their solutions in advance. However, complex interactions and their failure modes cannot always be anticipated by the designer and may be unfamiliar to plant personnel. These situations may pose cognitive demands on plant personnel, both individually and as a crew. Other factors may contribute to the cognitive challenges of NPP operation as well, including hierarchal processes, dynamic pace, system redundancy and reliability, and conflicting objectives. These factors are discussed in this paper

  19. Embedding Human Expert Cognition Into Autonomous UAS Trajectory Planning. (United States)

    Narayan, Pritesh; Meyer, Patrick; Campbell, Duncan


    This paper presents a new approach for the inclusion of human expert cognition into autonomous trajectory planning for unmanned aerial systems (UASs) operating in low-altitude environments. During typical UAS operations, multiple objectives may exist; therefore, the use of multicriteria decision aid techniques can potentially allow for convergence to trajectory solutions which better reflect overall mission requirements. In that context, additive multiattribute value theory has been applied to optimize trajectories with respect to multiple objectives. A graphical user interface was developed to allow for knowledge capture from a human decision maker (HDM) through simulated decision scenarios. The expert decision data gathered are converted into value functions and corresponding criteria weightings using utility additive theory. The inclusion of preferences elicited from HDM data within an automated decision system allows for the generation of trajectories which more closely represent the candidate HDM decision preferences. This approach has been demonstrated in this paper through simulation using a fixed-wing UAS operating in low-altitude environments.

  20. Physical Predictors of Cognitive Performance in Healthy Older Adults : A Cross-Sectional Analysis

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Blankevoort, Christiaan G.; Scherder, Erik J. A.; Wieling, Martijn B.; Hortobagyi, Tibor; Brouwer, Wiebo H.; Geuze, Reint H.; van Heuvelen, Marieke J. G.


    There is ample evidence that physical and cognitive performance are related, but the results of studies investigating this relationship show great variability. Both physical performance and cognitive performance are constructs consisting of several subdomains, but it is presently unknown if the

  1. Listen to the Noise: Noise Is Beneficial for Cognitive Performance in ADHD (United States)

    Soderlund, Goran; Sikstrom, Sverker; Smart, Andrew


    Background: Noise is typically conceived of as being detrimental to cognitive performance. However, given the mechanism of stochastic resonance, a certain amount of noise can benefit performance. We investigate cognitive performance in noisy environments in relation to a neurocomputational model of attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD)…

  2. Aerobic Exercise Intervention, Cognitive Performance, and Brain Structure

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Jonasson, Lars S; Nyberg, Lars; Kramer, Arthur F


    . Freesurfer was used to estimate cortical thickness in frontal regions and hippocampus volume. Results showed that aerobic exercisers, compared to controls, exhibited a broad, rather than specific, improvement in cognition as indexed by a higher "Cognitive score," a composite including episodic memory...

  3. Conservatism and liberalism predict performance in two nonideological cognitive tasks. (United States)

    Bernabel, Rodolpho Talaisys; Oliveira, Amâncio


    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.

  4. The SACADA database for human reliability and human performance

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    James Chang, Y.; Bley, Dennis; Criscione, Lawrence; Kirwan, Barry; Mosleh, Ali; Madary, Todd; Nowell, Rodney; Richards, Robert; Roth, Emilie M.; Sieben, Scott; Zoulis, Antonios


    Lack of appropriate and sufficient human performance data has been identified as a key factor affecting human reliability analysis (HRA) quality especially in the estimation of human error probability (HEP). The Scenario Authoring, Characterization, and Debriefing Application (SACADA) database was developed by the U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) to address this data need. An agreement between NRC and the South Texas Project Nuclear Operating Company (STPNOC) was established to support the SACADA development with aims to make the SACADA tool suitable for implementation in the nuclear power plants' operator training program to collect operator performance information. The collected data would support the STPNOC's operator training program and be shared with the NRC for improving HRA quality. This paper discusses the SACADA data taxonomy, the theoretical foundation, the prospective data to be generated from the SACADA raw data to inform human reliability and human performance, and the considerations on the use of simulator data for HRA. Each SACADA data point consists of two information segments: context and performance results. Context is a characterization of the performance challenges to task success. The performance results are the results of performing the task. The data taxonomy uses a macrocognitive functions model for the framework. At a high level, information is classified according to the macrocognitive functions of detecting the plant abnormality, understanding the abnormality, deciding the response plan, executing the response plan, and team related aspects (i.e., communication, teamwork, and supervision). The data are expected to be useful for analyzing the relations between context, error modes and error causes in human performance

  5. Layout Design of Human-Machine Interaction Interface of Cabin Based on Cognitive Ergonomics and GA-ACA


    Deng, Li; Wang, Guohua; Yu, Suihuai


    In order to consider the psychological cognitive characteristics affecting operating comfort and realize the automatic layout design, cognitive ergonomics and GA-ACA (genetic algorithm and ant colony algorithm) were introduced into the layout design of human-machine interaction interface. First, from the perspective of cognitive psychology, according to the information processing process, the cognitive model of human-machine interaction interface was established. Then, the human cognitive cha...

  6. Assessment of the effects of glutamic acid decarboxylase antibodies and trace elements on cognitive performance in older adults

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Alghadir AH


    Full Text Available Ahmad H Alghadir,1 Sami A Gabr,1,2 Einas Al-Eisa11Department of Rehabilitation Sciences, College of Applied Medical Sciences, King Saud University, Riyadh, Saudi Arabia; 2Department of Anatomy, Faculty of Medicine, Mansoura University, Mansoura, EgyptBackground: Homeostatic imbalance of trace elements such as iron (Fe, copper (Cu, and zinc (Zn demonstrated adverse effects on brain function among older adults.Objective: The present study aimed to investigate the effects of trace elements and the presence of anti-glutamic acid decarboxylase antibodies (GADAs in human cognitive abilities among healthy older adults.Methods: A total of 100 healthy subjects (65 males, 35 females; age range; 64–96 years were recruited for this study. Based on Loewenstein Occupational Therapy Cognitive Assessment (LOTCA score, the participants were classified according to cognitive performance into normal (n=45, moderate (n=30, and severe (n=25. Cognitive functioning, leisure-time physical activity (LTPA, serum trace elements – Fe, Cu, Zn, Zn/Cu, and GADAs were assessed using LOTCA battery, pre-validated physical activity (PA questionnaire, atomic absorption, and immunoassay techniques, respectively.Results: Approximately 45% of the study population (n=45 had normal distribution of cognitive function and 55% of the study population (n=55 had abnormal cognitive function; they were classified into moderate (score 62–92 and severe (score 31–62. There was a significant reduction in the level of Zn and Zn/Cu ratio along with an increase in the level of Fe, Cu, and anti-GADAs in subjects of severe (P=0.01 and moderate (P=0.01 cognitive performance. LOTCA-cognitive scores correlated positively with sex, HbA1c, Fe, Cu, Zn, and Zn/Cu ratio, and negatively with age, PA, body mass index, and anti-GADAs. Significant inter-correlation was reported between serum trace element concentrations and anti-GADAs which suggest producing a cognitive decline via oxidative and neural

  7. The kidney disease quality of life cognitive function subscale and cognitive performance maintenance hemodialysis patients (United States)

    Background: Cognitive impairment is common but often undiagnosed in patients with end-stage renal disease, in part reflecting limited validated and easily administered tools to assess cognitive function in dialysis patients. Accordingly, we assessed the utility of the Kidney Disease Quality of Life ...

  8. The influence of cognitive load on spatial search performance. (United States)

    Longstaffe, Kate A; Hood, Bruce M; Gilchrist, Iain D


    During search, executive function enables individuals to direct attention to potential targets, remember locations visited, and inhibit distracting information. In the present study, we investigated these executive processes in large-scale search. In our tasks, participants searched a room containing an array of illuminated locations embedded in the floor. The participants' task was to press the switches at the illuminated locations on the floor so as to locate a target that changed color when pressed. The perceptual salience of the search locations was manipulated by having some locations flashing and some static. Participants were more likely to search at flashing locations, even when they were explicitly informed that the target was equally likely to be at any location. In large-scale search, attention was captured by the perceptual salience of the flashing lights, leading to a bias to explore these targets. Despite this failure of inhibition, participants were able to restrict returns to previously visited locations, a measure of spatial memory performance. Participants were more able to inhibit exploration to flashing locations when they were not required to remember which locations had previously been visited. A concurrent digit-span memory task further disrupted inhibition during search, as did a concurrent auditory attention task. These experiments extend a load theory of attention to large-scale search, which relies on egocentric representations of space. High cognitive load on working memory leads to increased distractor interference, providing evidence for distinct roles for the executive subprocesses of memory and inhibition during large-scale search.

  9. Cognitive performance and electrophysiological indices of cognitive control: a validation study of conflict adaptation. (United States)

    Clayson, Peter E; Larson, Michael J


    Psychiatric and neurologic disorders are associated with deficits in the postconflict recruitment of cognitive control. The primary aim of this study was to validate the relationship between cognitive functioning and indices of conflict adaptation. Event-related potentials were obtained from 89 healthy individuals who completed an Eriksen flanker task. Neuropsychological domains tested included memory, verbal fluency, and attention/executive functioning. Behavioral measures and N2 amplitudes showed significant conflict adaptation (i.e., previous-trial congruencies influenced current-trial measures). Higher scores on the attention/executive functioning and verbal fluency domains were associated with larger incongruent-trial N2 conflict adaptation; measures of cognitive functioning were not related to behavioral indices. This study provides initial validation of N2 conflict adaptation effects as cognitive function-related aspects of cognitive control. Copyright © 2012 Society for Psychophysiological Research.

  10. Performances on a cognitive theory of mind task: specific decline or general cognitive deficits? Evidence from normal aging. (United States)

    Fliss, Rafika; Lemerre, Marion; Mollard, Audrey


    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.

  11. Cognitive performance and informant reports in the diagnosis of cognitive impairment and dementia in African Americans and whites. (United States)

    Potter, Guy G; Plassman, Brenda L; Burke, James R; Kabeto, Mohammed U; Langa, Kenneth M; Llewellyn, David J; Rogers, Mary A M; Steffens, David C


    The diagnosis of cognitive impairment and dementia must reflect an increasingly diverse and aging United States population. This study compared direct testing and informant reports of cognition with clinical diagnoses of cognitive impairment and dementia between African Americans and whites. Participants in the Aging, Demographics, and Memory Study completed in-person dementia evaluations, and were assigned clinical diagnoses (by a consensus panel of dementia experts) of normal; cognitive impairment, not demented (CIND); and dementia. The Consortium to Establish a Registry for Alzheimer's Disease (CERAD) total score and the Informant Questionnaire on Cognitive Decline in the Elderly (IQCODE) were used to assess cognitive performance and reported cognitive decline. A higher CERAD total score was associated with lower odds of CIND and dementia, at comparable ratios between African Americans and whites. Higher IQCODE scores were associated with increased odds of dementia in both African Americans and whites. Higher IQCODE scores were associated with increased odds of CIND among whites, but not among African Americans. Cultural differences may influence informant reports of prevalent CIND and dementia. Our findings also highlight the need for more comparative research to establish the cultural validity of measures used to diagnose these conditions.

  12. Subjective memory complaints are associated with poorer cognitive performance in adults with HIV. (United States)

    Kamkwalala, Asante; Hulgan, Todd; Newhouse, Paul


    With successful antiretroviral therapy in the US, HIV-positive adults now routinely survive into old age. However, increased life expectancy with HIV introduces the added complication of age-related cognitive decline. Aging with HIV has been associated with poorer cognitive outcomes compared to HIV-negative adults. While up to 50% of older HIV-positive adults will develop some degree of cognitive impairment over their lifetime, cognitive symptoms are often not consistently monitored, until those symptoms are significant enough to impair daily life. In this study we found that subjective memory complaint (SMC) ratings correlated with measurable memory performance impairments in HIV-positive adults, but not HIV-negative adults. As the HIV-positive population ages, structured subjective cognitive assessment may be beneficial to identify the early signs of cognitive impairment, and subsequently allow for earlier interventions to maintain cognitive performance as these adults continue to survive into old age.

  13. Resting-state slow wave power, healthy aging and cognitive performance


    Eleni L. Vlahou; Franka Thurm; Iris-Tatjana Kolassa; Winfried Schlee


    Cognitive functions and spontaneous neural activity show significant changes over the life-span, but the interrelations between age, cognition and resting-state brain oscillations are not well understood. Here, we assessed performance on the Trail Making Test and resting-state magnetoencephalographic (MEG) recordings from 53 healthy adults (18–89 years old) to investigate associations between age-dependent changes in spontaneous oscillatory activity and cognitive performance. Results show tha...

  14. Effects of radiofrequency radiation emitted by cellular telephones on the cognitive functions of humans. (United States)

    Eliyahu, Ilan; Luria, Roy; Hareuveny, Ronen; Margaliot, Menachem; Meiran, Nachshon; Shani, Gad


    The present study examined the effects of exposure to Electromagnetic Radiation emitted by a standard GSM phone at 890 MHz on human cognitive functions. This study attempted to establish a connection between the exposure of a specific area of the brain and the cognitive functions associated with that area. A total of 36 healthy right-handed male subjects performed four distinct cognitive tasks: spatial item recognition, verbal item recognition, and two spatial compatibility tasks. Tasks were chosen according to the brain side they are assumed to activate. All subjects performed the tasks under three exposure conditions: right side, left side, and sham exposure. The phones were controlled by a base station simulator and operated at their full power. We have recorded the reaction times (RTs) and accuracy of the responses. The experiments consisted of two sections, of 1 h each, with a 5 min break in between. The tasks and the exposure regimes were counterbalanced. The results indicated that the exposure of the left side of the brain slows down the left-hand response time, in the second-later-part of the experiment. This effect was apparent in three of the four tasks, and was highly significant in only one of the tests. The exposure intensity and its duration exceeded the common exposure of cellular phone users.

  15. Virginia power's human performance evaluation system (HPES)

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Patterson, W.E.


    This paper reports on the Human Performance Evaluation System (HPES) which was initially developed by the Institute of Nuclear Power Operations (INPO) using the Aviation Safety Reporting System (ASRS) as a guide. After a pilot program involving three utilities ended in 1983, the present day program was instituted. A methodology was developed, for specific application to nuclear power plant employees, to aid trained coordinators/evaluators in determining those factors that exert a negative influence on human behavior in the nuclear power plant environment. HPES is for anyone and everyone on site, from contractors to plant staff to plant management. No one is excluded from participation. Virginia Power's HPES program goal is to identify and correct the root causes of human performance problems. Evaluations are performed on reported real or perceived conditions that may have an adverse influence on members of the nuclear team. A report is provided to management identifying root cause and contributing factors along with recommended corrective actions

  16. Individual differences in infant fearfulness and cognitive performance: a testing, performance, or competence effect? (United States)

    Rieser-Danner, Loretta A


    The author conducted 2 studies to examine the relations between infant fear and cognitive testing performance in 12-month-old infants. In Study 1, fear was assessed by using 2 standard temperament questionnaires and a laboratory-based, standardized stranger approach. Individual differences in cognitive development were assessed using the Object Permanence Scale of the Infant Psychological Development Scales (I. C. Uzgiris & J. M. Hunt, 1975). All 3 assessments of fear significantly predicted object permanence performance, with correlations ranging from -.32 to -.35. In Study 2, fear was assessed via a maternal report questionnaire, and habituation performance was assessed via a basic-level categorization task. Familiarity with the examiner and with the testing environment was manipulated to test for a familiarity influence on performance. Testing revealed individual differences in both fear and habituation. Results suggest that highly fearful infants required more trials to habituate and were less likely to meet the habituation criterion than infants who were less fearful. Methodological and conceptual implications of these results are discussed.

  17. Cognitive Performances Are Selectively Enhanced during Chronic Caloric Restriction or Resveratrol Supplementation in a Primate (United States)

    Marchal, Julia; Picq, Jean-Luc; Aujard, Fabienne


    Effects of an 18-month treatment with a moderate, chronic caloric restriction (CR) or an oral supplementation with resveratrol (RSV), a potential CR mimetic, on cognitive and motor performances were studied in non-human primates, grey mouse lemurs (Microcebus murinus). Thirty-three adult male mouse lemurs were assigned to three different groups: a control (CTL) group fed ad libitum, a CR group fed 70% of the CTL caloric intake, and an RSV group (RSV supplementation of 200−−1) fed ad libitum. Three different cognitive tests, two motor tests, one emotional test and an analysis of cortisol level were performed in each group. Compared to CTL animals, CR or RSV animals did not show any change in motor performances evaluated by rotarod and jump tests, but an increase in spontaneous locomotor activity was observed in both groups. Working memory was improved by both treatments in the spontaneous alternation task. Despite a trend for CR group, only RSV supplementation increased spatial memory performances in the circular platform task. Finally, none of these treatments induced additional stress to the animals as reflected by similar results in the open field test and cortisol analyses compared to CTL animals. The present data provided the earliest evidence for a beneficial effect of CR or RSV supplementation on specific cognitive functions in a primate. Taken together, these results suggest that RSV could be a good candidate to mimic long-term CR effects and support the growing evidences that nutritional interventions can have beneficial effects on brain functions even in adults. PMID:21304942

  18. Daytime Cognitive Performance in Response to Sunlight or Fluorescent Light Controlling for Sleep Duration (United States)

    Ramos, Jhanic; Zamos, Adela; Rao, Rohit; Flynn-Evans, Erin


    Light is the primary synchronizer of the human circadian rhythm and also has acute alerting effects. Our study involves and comparing the alertness, performance and sleep of participants in the NASA Ames Sustainability Base, which uses sunlight as its primary light source, to in a traditional office building which uses overhead florescent lighting and varying exposure to natural light. The purpose of this study is to determine whether the use of natural lighting as a primary light source improves daytime cognitive function and promotes nighttime sleep. Participants from the Sustainability Base will be matched by gender and age to individuals working in other NASA buildings. In a prior study we found no differences in performance between those working in the Sustainability Base and those working in other buildings. Unexpectedly, we found that the average sleep duration among participants in both buildings was short, which likely obscured our ability to detect a difference the effect of light exposure on alertness. Given that such sleep deprivation has negative effects on cognitive performance, in this iteration of the study we are asking the participants to maintain a regular schedule with eight hours in bed each night in order to control for the effect of self-selected sleep restriction. Over the course of one week, we will ask the participants to wear actiwatches continuously, complete a psychomotor vigilance task (PVT) and digit symbol substitution task (DSST) three times per day, and keep daily sleepwork diaries. We hope that this study will provide data to support the idea that natural lighting and green architectural design are optimal to enhance healthy nighttime sleep patterns and daytime cognitive performance.

  19. Humans have evolved specialized skills of social cognition: the cultural intelligence hypothesis. (United States)

    Herrmann, Esther; Call, Josep; Hernàndez-Lloreda, Maráa Victoria; Hare, Brian; Tomasello, Michael


    Humans have many cognitive skills not possessed by their nearest primate relatives. The cultural intelligence hypothesis argues that this is mainly due to a species-specific set of social-cognitive skills, emerging early in ontogeny, for participating and exchanging knowledge in cultural groups. We tested this hypothesis by giving a comprehensive battery of cognitive tests to large numbers of two of humans' closest primate relatives, chimpanzees and orangutans, as well as to 2.5-year-old human children before literacy and schooling. Supporting the cultural intelligence hypothesis and contradicting the hypothesis that humans simply have more "general intelligence," we found that the children and chimpanzees had very similar cognitive skills for dealing with the physical world but that the children had more sophisticated cognitive skills than either of the ape species for dealing with the social world.

  20. Quantification of human performance using performance shaping factors

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Embrey, D.E.; Hall, R.E.


    This paper considers the human reliability data needs for Probabilistic Risk Assessment, and concludes that some form of extrapolation will be needed to supplement the limited data resources currently available. A technique for quantifying expert subjective judgement is described, which can be used to systematically perform extrapolations. Some preliminary results from recent research in this area are presented

  1. Improving human performance: Industry factors influencing the ability to perform

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Güera Massyn Romo


    Full Text Available Learning interventions and new technologies that aim to improve human performance must take cognisance of industry factors inhibiting human performance. The dynamic and fast pace nature of the Information and Communication Technologies (ICT and the engineering industries do not lend themselves to proper skills planning and management. These industries experience real skills gaps, to some of which they contribute by themselves. This study reports on these performance-inhibiting factors such as the underutilisation of available skills, tolerance for individual preferences, and dynamically, and informally refining a role objective while an employee is occupying a certain role. The important professional skills required by individuals to cope with these real life factors are also explored in the skills gaps management context. Moreover, these industries need a profile they refer to as Special Forces, which denotes a high calibre of worker that possesses well-developed professional skills whilst having advanced technical expertise and sufficient experience. This resource profile is required largely due to the poor management of human resource processes in practice and the current reported lack of adequate skills. Furthermore, this study refers to the recent lack of a working definition for these Special Forces leading to the omitted active development of these profiles in industry today, which appears to become a key human performance inhibiting factor.

  2. Reviewing the Role of Cognitive Load, Expertise Level, Motivation, and Unconscious Processing in Working Memory Performance (United States)

    Kuldas, Seffetullah; Hashim, Shahabuddin; Ismail, Hairul Nizam; Abu Bakar, Zainudin


    Human cognitive capacity is unavailable for conscious processing of every amount of instructional messages. Aligning an instructional design with learner expertise level would allow better use of available working memory capacity in a cognitive learning task. Motivating students to learn consciously is also an essential determinant of the capacity…

  3. Aging Audiences: Association of Live Performance Attendance and Cognitive Decline in a Biracial Sample. (United States)

    Rajan, Kumar B; Rajan, Rekha S; Manning, Lydia K; Evans, Denis A


    To examine if attendance in live performances was associated with change in cognition among African Americans (AAs) and European Americans (EAs). The study consisted of 5,567 older adults with at least follow-up interview and analyzed using a linear mixed effects regression model adjusting for demographic and health variables. We found that frequent performance attendance was associated with slower decline in composite cognitive function among older AAs and EAs. Attending 10 or more performances per year was associated with 23% slower cognitive decline among AAs and 31% slower cognitive decline among EAs compared with those who never attend any performance. However, this difference was not significant ( p = .56). Attending live performances was also associated with slower decline in individual tests of perceptual speed, episodic memory, and mini-mental state exam (MMSE). Our findings suggest that live performances form a valuable component of arts engagement and should be encouraged for potential cognitive benefits.

  4. Children's Sleep, Sleepiness, and Performance on Cognitive Tasks. (United States)

    Buckhalt, Joseph A


    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.

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


    Buckhalt, Joseph A.


    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...

  6. Cognitive function affects trainability for physical performance in exercise intervention among older adults with mild cognitive impairment

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Uemura K


    Full Text Available Kazuki Uemura,1,3 Hiroyuki Shimada,1 Hyuma Makizako,1,3 Takehiko Doi,1 Daisuke Yoshida,1 Kota Tsutsumimoto,1 Yuya Anan,1 Takao Suzuki21Section for Health Promotion, Department for Research and Development to Support Independent Life of Elderly, Center for Gerontology and Social Science, National Center for Geriatrics and Gerontology, 2Research Institute, National Center for Geriatrics and Gerontology, Aichi, 3Japan Society for the Promotion of Science, Tokyo, JapanBackground: Although much evidence supports the hypothesis that cognitive function and physical function are interrelated, it is unclear whether cognitive decline with mild cognitive impairment influences trainability of physical performance in exercise intervention. The purpose of this study was to examine the association between cognitive function at baseline and change in physical performance after exercise intervention in older adults with mild cognitive impairment.Methods: Forty-four older adults diagnosed with mild cognitive impairment based on the Peterson criteria (mean age 74.8 years consented to and completed a 6-month twice weekly exercise intervention. The Timed Up and Go (TUG test was used as a measure of physical performance. The Mini-Mental State Examination (MMSE, Trail Making Test Part B, Geriatric Depression Scale, baseline muscle strength of knee extension, and attendance rate of intervention, were measured as factors for predicting trainability.Results: In the correlation analysis, the change in TUG showed modest correlations with attendance rate in the exercise program (r = -0.354, P = 0.027 and MMSE at baseline (r = -0.321, P = 0.034. A multiple regression analysis revealed that change in TUG was independently associated with attendance rate (ß = -0.322, P = 0.026 and MMSE score (ß = -0.295, P = 0.041, controlling for age and gender.Conclusion: General cognitive function was associated with improvements in physical performance after exercise intervention in

  7. Androgen responsiveness to competition in humans: the role of cognitive variables

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Oliveira GA


    Full Text Available Gonçalo A Oliveira,1 Rui F Oliveira1,2 1Unidade de Investigação em Eco-Etologia, ISPA – Instituto Universitário, Lisbon, Portugal; 2Champalimaud Neuroscience Program, Instituto Gulbenkian de Ciência, Oeiras, Portugal Abstract: Although androgens are commonly seen as male sex hormones, it has been established over the years that in both sexes, androgens also respond to social challenges. To explain the socially driven changes in androgens, two theoretical models have been proposed: the biosocial model and the challenge hypothesis. These models are typically seen as partly overlapping; however, they generate different predictions that are clarified here. In humans, sports competition and nonmetabolic competitive tasks have been used in the laboratory setting, as a proxy for agonistic interactions in animals. The results reviewed here show that the testosterone (T response to competition in humans is highly variable – the studies present postcompetition T levels and changes in T that depend on the contest outcome and that cannot be predicted by the current theoretical models. These conflicting results bring to the foreground the importance of considering cognitive factors that could moderate the androgen response to competition. Among these variables, we elect cognitive appraisal and its components as a key candidate modulating factor. It is known that T also modulates the cognitive processes that are relevant to performance in competition. In this article, we reviewed the evidence arising from studies investigating the effect of administering exogenous T and compare those results with the findings from studies that measured endogenous T levels. Finally, we summarized the importance of also considering the interaction between androgens and other hormones, such as cortisol, when investigating the social modulation of T, as proposed by the dual-hormone hypothesis. Keywords: testosterone, challenge hypothesis, biosocial model, cognitive

  8. Missing focus on Human Factors - organizational and cognitive ergonomics - in the safety management for the petroleum industry. (United States)

    Johnsen, Stig O; Kilskar, Stine Skaufel; Fossum, Knut Robert


    More attention has recently been given to Human Factors in petroleum accident investigations. The Human Factors areas examined in this article are organizational, cognitive and physical ergonomics. A key question to be explored is as follows: To what degree are the petroleum industry and safety authorities in Norway focusing on these Human Factors areas from the design phase? To investigate this, we conducted an innovative exploratory study of the development of four control centres in Norwegian oil and gas industry in collaboration between users, management and Human Factors experts. We also performed a literature survey and discussion with the professional Human Factors network in Norway. We investigated the Human Factors focus, reasons for not considering Human Factors and consequences of missing Human Factors in safety management. The results revealed an immature focus and organization of Human Factors. Expertise on organizational ergonomics and cognitive ergonomics are missing from companies and safety authorities and are poorly prioritized during the development. The easy observable part of Human Factors (i.e. physical ergonomics) is often in focus. Poor focus on Human Factors in the design process creates demanding conditions for human operators and impact safety and resilience. There is lack of non-technical skills such as communication and decision-making. New technical equipment such as Closed Circuit Television is implemented without appropriate use of Human Factors standards. Human Factors expertise should be involved as early as possible in the responsible organizations. Verification and validation of Human Factors should be improved and performed from the start, by certified Human Factors experts in collaboration with the workforce. The authorities should check-back that the regulatory framework of Human Factors is communicated, understood and followed.

  9. Major depressive disorder, cognitive symptoms, and neuropsychological performance among ethnically diverse HIV+ men and women. (United States)

    Fellows, Robert P; Byrd, Desiree A; Morgello, Susan


    Major depressive disorder (MDD), cognitive symptoms, and mild cognitive deficits commonly occur in HIV-infected individuals, despite highly active antiretroviral therapies. In this study, we compared neuropsychological performance and cognitive symptoms of 191 HIV-infected participants. Results indicated that participants with a formal diagnosis of current MDD performed significantly worse than participants without MDD in all seven neuropsychological domains evaluated, with the largest effect sizes in information processing speed, learning, and memory. In addition, a brief assessment of cognitive symptoms, derived from a comprehensive neuromedical interview, correlated significantly with neurocognitive functioning. Participants with MDD reported more cognitive symptoms and showed greater neurocognitive deficits than participants without MDD. These findings indicate that HIV-infected adults with MDD have more cognitive symptoms and worse neuropsychological performance than HIV-infected individuals without MDD. The results of this study have important implications for the diagnosis of HIV-associated neurocognitive disorders (HAND).

  10. An Analysis of Content Knowledge and Cognitive Abilities as Factors That Are Associated with Algebra Performance (United States)

    McLean, Tamika Ann


    The current study investigated college students' content knowledge and cognitive abilities as factors associated with their algebra performance, and examined how combinations of content knowledge and cognitive abilities related to their algebra performance. Specifically, the investigation examined the content knowledge factors of computational…

  11. Familial Longevity Is Marked by Better Cognitive Performance at Middle Age: The Leiden Longevity Study

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Stijntjes, M.; Craen, A.J.M.; van Heemst, D.; Meskers, C.G.M.; van Buchem, M.A.; Westendorp, R.G.J.; Slagboom, P.E.; Maier, A.B.


    Background: Decline in cognitive performance is a highly prevalent health condition in elderly. We studied whether offspring of nonagenarian siblings with a familial history of longevity, perform better on cognitive tests compared to their partners as controls. This is relevant since it could

  12. Mother-Child Attachment and Cognitive Performance in Middle Childhood: An Examination of Mediating Mechanisms (United States)

    West, Katara K.; Mathews, Brittany L.; Kerns, Kathryn A.


    Although mother-child attachment has been shown to predict cognitive performance, there has been a lack of attention to the mediating mechanisms that explain these associations. In the present study, we investigated relations of early mother-child attachment and cognitive performance in middle childhood (the latter in terms of both academic…

  13. Cognitive Load Theory: An Empirical Study of Anxiety and Task Performance in Language Learning (United States)

    Chen, I-Jung; Chang, Chi-Cheng


    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…

  14. Is Cognitive Test-Taking Anxiety Associated With Academic Performance Among Nursing Students? (United States)

    Duty, Susan M; Christian, Ladonna; Loftus, Jocelyn; Zappi, Victoria


    The cognitive component of test anxiety was correlated with academic performance among nursing students. Modest but statistically significant lower examination grade T scores were observed for students with high compared with low levels of cognitive test anxiety (CTA). High levels of CTA were associated with reduced academic performance.

  15. 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

  16. Effects of Cognitive Demand on Situational Interest and Running Task Performances (United States)

    Zhu, Xihe; Chen, Senlin


    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.…

  17. Radiation dose, driving performance, and cognitive function in patients with head and neck cancer

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Yuen, Hon K.; Sharma, Anand K.; Logan, William C.; Gillespie, M. Boyd; Day, Terry A.; Brooks, Johnell O.


    Seven head and neck cancer patients participated in a driving evaluation in a driving simulator. Radiation dose on the temporal lobes was moderately associated with time to complete a cognitive test and with driving performance. Results indicated that incidental irradiation may contribute to a decrease in cognition and in unsafe driving performance, which seems to be time-dependent

  18. The Effects of Blood Glucose Levels on Cognitive Performance: A Review of the Literature (United States)

    Feldman, Jolene; Barshi, Immanuel


    The purpose of this review paper is to discuss the research literature on the effects of blood glucose levels on executive and non-executive functions in humans. The review begins with a brief description of blood glucose, how it has been studied, previous syntheses of prior studies, and basic results regarding the role of blood glucose on cognitive functioning. The following sections describe work that investigated the effect of blood glucose on both non-executive and executive functions (e.g., sensory processing, psychomotor functioning, attention, vigilance, memory, language and communication, judgement and decision-making, and complex task performance). Within each section, summaries of the findings and challenges to the literature are included. Measurement conversions of blood glucose levels, blood glucose values, and associated symptoms are depicted. References to the types of tests used to investigate blood glucose and cognitive performance are provided. For more detailed descriptions of references within (and in addition to) this paper, an annotated bibliography is also provided. Several moderator variables including individual differences and contextual variables related to the effects of blood glucose levels on performance (e.g., age, gender, time of day, familiarity with the task and symptom awareness, expectancy effects, dose dependent effects, time dependent effects, task specific effects, rising and falling blood glucose levels, and speed and/or accuracy trade-offs) are addressed later in the paper. Some suggestions for future experimental methodologies are also made.

  19. Human performance in radiological survey scanning

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Brown, W.S.; Abelquist, E.W.


    The probability of detecting residual contamination in the field using portable radiological survey instruments depends not only on the sensitivity of the instrumentation used in scanning, but also on the surveyor's performance. This report provides a basis for taking human performance into account in determining the minimum level of activity detectable by scanning. A theoretical framework was developed (based on signal detection theory) which allows influences on surveyors to be anticipated and understood, and supports a quantitative assessment of performance. The performance of surveyors under controlled yet realistic field conditions was examined to gain insight into the task and to develop means of quantifying performance. Then, their performance was assessed under laboratory conditions to quantify more precisely their ability to make the required discriminations. The information was used to characterize surveyors' performance in the scanning task and to provide a basis for predicting levels of radioactivity that are likely to be detectable under various conditions by surveyors using portable survey instruments

  20. Human performance in radiological survey scanning

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Brown, W.S. [Brookhaven National Lab., Upton, NY (United States); Abelquist, E.W. [Oak Ridge Inst. for Science and Education, TN (United States)


    The probability of detecting residual contamination in the field using portable radiological survey instruments depends not only on the sensitivity of the instrumentation used in scanning, but also on the surveyor`s performance. This report provides a basis for taking human performance into account in determining the minimum level of activity detectable by scanning. A theoretical framework was developed (based on signal detection theory) which allows influences on surveyors to be anticipated and understood, and supports a quantitative assessment of performance. The performance of surveyors under controlled yet realistic field conditions was examined to gain insight into the task and to develop means of quantifying performance. Then, their performance was assessed under laboratory conditions to quantify more precisely their ability to make the required discriminations. The information was used to characterize surveyors` performance in the scanning task and to provide a basis for predicting levels of radioactivity that are likely to be detectable under various conditions by surveyors using portable survey instruments.

  1. Poorer cognitive performance in perinatally HIV-infected children versus healthy socioeconomically matched controls

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Cohen, S.; ter Stege, J.A.; Geurtsen, G.J.; Scherpbier, H.J.; Kuijpers, T.W.; Reiss, P.; Schmand, B.; Pajkrt, D.


    Background: Despite the declining incidence of severe neurological complications such as HIV encephalopathy, human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) infection in children is still associated with a range of cognitive problems. Although most HIV-infected children in industrialized countries are immigrants

  2. Plasticity of Human Spatial Cognition: Spatial Language and Cognition Covary across Cultures (United States)

    Haun, Daniel B. M.; Rapold, Christian J.; Janzen, Gabriele; Levinson, Stephen C.


    The present paper explores cross-cultural variation in spatial cognition by comparing spatial reconstruction tasks by Dutch and Namibian elementary school children. These two communities differ in the way they predominantly express spatial relations in language. Four experiments investigate cognitive strategy preferences across different levels of…

  3. Increasing cognitive load attenuates right arm swing in healthy human walking (United States)

    Killeen, Tim; Easthope, Christopher S.; Filli, Linard; Lőrincz, Lilla; Schrafl-Altermatt, Miriam; Brugger, Peter; Linnebank, Michael; Curt, Armin; Zörner, Björn; Bolliger, Marc


    Human arm swing looks and feels highly automated, yet it is increasingly apparent that higher centres, including the cortex, are involved in many aspects of locomotor control. The addition of a cognitive task increases arm swing asymmetry during walking, but the characteristics and mechanism of this asymmetry are unclear. We hypothesized that this effect is lateralized and a Stroop word-colour naming task-primarily involving left hemisphere structures-would reduce right arm swing only. We recorded gait in 83 healthy subjects aged 18-80 walking normally on a treadmill and while performing a congruent and incongruent Stroop task. The primary measure of arm swing asymmetry-an index based on both three-dimensional wrist trajectories in which positive values indicate proportionally smaller movements on the right-increased significantly under dual-task conditions in those aged 40-59 and further still in the over-60s, driven by reduced right arm flexion. Right arm swing attenuation appears to be the norm in humans performing a locomotor-cognitive dual-task, confirming a prominent role of the brain in locomotor behaviour. Women under 60 are surprisingly resistant to this effect, revealing unexpected gender differences atop the hierarchical chain of locomotor control.

  4. Human Resource management, Institutionalisation and Organisational Performance

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    J.P.P.E.F. Boselie (Paul); J. Paauwe (Jaap); R. Richardson


    textabstractThe relationship between Human Resource Management (HRM) and firm performance has been a hotly debated topic over the last decade, especially in the United States (e.g. Osterman, 1994; Huselid, 1995; MacDuffie, 1995). The question arises whether the domination of USA oriented models,

  5. Integrating Humanism and Behaviorism: Toward Performance (United States)

    Smith, Darrell


    The current emphasis on performance criteria in training programs and in professional services poses a threat to the humanistically oriented helper. This article suggests a behavioral humanism as the desired solution to the dilemma and proposes some guidelines for formulating and implementing such a synthetic system. (Author)

  6. Inverted-U shaped dopamine actions on human working memory and cognitive control (United States)

    Cools, R; D’Esposito, M


    Brain dopamine has long been implicated in cognitive control processes, including working memory. However, the precise role of dopamine in cognition is not well understood, partly because there is large variability in the response to dopaminergic drugs both across different behaviors and across different individuals. We review evidence from a series of studies with experimental animals, healthy humans and patients with Parkinson’s disease, which highlight two important factors that contribute to this large variability. First, the existence of an optimum dopamine level for cognitive function implicates the need to take into account baseline levels of dopamine when isolating dopamine’s effects. Second, cognitive control is a multi-factorial phenomenon, requiring a dynamic balance between cognitive stability and cognitive flexibility. These distinct components might implicate the prefrontal cortex and the striatum respectively. Manipulating dopamine will thus have paradoxical consequences for distinct cognitive control processes depending on distinct basal or optimal levels of dopamine in different brain regions. PMID:21531388

  7. How does coconut oil affect cognitive performance in alzheimer patients? (United States)

    De la Rubia Ortí, José Enrique; Sánchez Álvarez, Carmen; Selvi Sabater, Pablo; Bueno Cayo, Alma María; Sancho Castillo, Sandra; Rochina, Mariano Julián; Hu Yang, Iván


    Introduction: Alzheimer’s disease is one of the most prevalent neurodegenerative dementia in developed world. This fact, coupled with the lack cure, makes new no pharmacological therapeutic strategies such as nutrient management to investigate. In this regard, it stresses the possible influence of coconut oil as alternative energy source capable of stopping the progressively neuronal death that occurs in this disease. Objectives: To assess the cognitive impact of coconut oil in Alzheimer’s patients, and specifically in orientation, language-building, fixing, calculation-concentration and memory areas. Methods: Prospective, longitudinal, qualitative, analytical and experimental study through a clinical trial where 44 patients with Alzheimer’s in region of Ribera (Valencia), of which half was selected to receive during 21 days, 40 ml coconut oil daily divided between breakfast (20 ml) and food (20 ml). Before and after administration of the oil, they were evaluated through cognitive test Mini-Mental State Examination to determine possible changes. Results: It was observed in patients who received coconut oil, that cognitive improvement after completion of the intervention, statistically significant improved in the orientation and language-construction areas. Conclusions: Coconut oil appears to improve cognitive abilities of Alzheimer’s patients, with different intensity depending on the cognitive area.

  8. Face cognition in humans: Psychophysiological, developmental, and cross-cultural aspects


    Chernorizov A. M.; Zhong-qing J.; Petrakova A. V.; Zinchenko Yu. P.


    Investigators are finding increasing evidence for cross-cultural specificity in face cognition along with individual characteristics. The functions on which face cognition is based not only are types of general cognitive functions (perception, memory) but are elements of specific mental processes. Face perception, memorization, correct recognition of faces, and understanding the information that faces provide are essential skills for humans as a social species and can be considered as facets ...

  9. Categorial Compositionality: A Category Theory Explanation for the Systematicity of Human Cognition


    Phillips, Steven; Wilson, William H.


    Classical and Connectionist theories of cognitive architecture seek to explain systematicity (i.e., the property of human cognition whereby cognitive capacity comes in groups of related behaviours) as a consequence of syntactically and functionally compositional representations, respectively. However, both theories depend on ad hoc assumptions to exclude specific instances of these forms of compositionality (e.g. grammars, networks) that do not account for systematicity. By analogy with the P...

  10. Approach to modeling of human performance for purposes of probabilistic risk assessment

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Swain, A.D.


    This paper describes the general approach taken in NUREG/CR-1278 to model human performance in sufficienct detail to permit probabilistic risk assessments of nuclear power plant operations. To show the basis for the more specific models in the above NUREG, a simplified model of the human component in man-machine systems is presented, the role of performance shaping factors is discussed, and special problems in modeling the cognitive aspect of behavior are described

  11. Cognitive engineering in the design of human-computer interaction and expert systems

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Salvendy, G.


    The 68 papers contributing to this book cover the following areas: Theories of Interface Design; Methodologies of Interface Design; Applications of Interface Design; Software Design; Human Factors in Speech Technology and Telecommunications; Design of Graphic Dialogues; Knowledge Acquisition for Knowledge-Based Systems; Design, Evaluation and Use of Expert Systems. This demonstrates the dual role of cognitive engineering. On the one hand cognitive engineering is utilized to design computing systems which are compatible with human cognition and can be effectively and be easily utilized by all individuals. On the other hand, cognitive engineering is utilized to transfer human cognition into the computer for the purpose of building expert systems. Two papers are of interest to INIS

  12. Association of Plasma Neurofilament Light Chain with Neocortical Amyloid-β Load and Cognitive Performance in Cognitively Normal Elderly Participants. (United States)

    Chatterjee, Pratishtha; Goozee, Kathryn; Sohrabi, Hamid R; Shen, Kaikai; Shah, Tejal; Asih, Prita R; Dave, Preeti; ManYan, Candice; Taddei, Kevin; Chung, Roger; Zetterberg, Henrik; Blennow, Kaj; Martins, Ralph N


    The disruption of neurofilament, an axonal cytoskeletal protein, in neurodegenerative conditions may result in neuronal damage and its release into the cerebrospinal fluid and blood. In Alzheimer's disease (AD), neurofilament light chain (NFL), a neurofilament subunit, is elevated in the cerebrospinal fluid and blood. Investigate the association of plasma NFL with preclinical-AD features, such as high neocortical amyloid-β load (NAL) and subjective memory complaints, and cognitive performance in cognitively normal older adults. Plasma NFL concentrations were measured employing the single molecule array platform in participants from the Kerr Anglican Retirement Village Initiative in Ageing Health cohort, aged 65- 90 years. Participants underwent a battery of neuropsychological testing to evaluate cognitive performance and were categorized as low NAL (NAL-, n = 65) and high NAL (NAL+, n = 35) assessed via PET, and further stratified into subjective memory complainers (SMC; nNAL- = 51, nNAL+ = 25) and non-SMC (nNAL- = 14, nNAL+ = 10) based on the Memory Assessment Clinic- Questionnaire. Plasma NFL inversely correlated with cognitive performance. No significant difference in NFL was observed between NAL+ and NAL- participants; however, within APOEɛ4 non-carriers, higher NAL was observed in individuals with NFL concentrations within quartiles 3 and 4 (versus quartile 1). Additionally, within the NAL+ participants, SMC had a trend of higher NFL compared to non-SMC. Plasma NFL is inversely associated with cognitive performance in elderly individuals. While plasma NFL may not reflect NAL in individuals with normal global cognition, the current observations indicate that onset of axonal injury, reflected by increased plasma NFL, within the preclinical phase of AD may contribute to the pathogenesis of AD.

  13. [Cognitive performance in schizophrenia (paranoid vs residual subtype)]. (United States)

    Dillon, Carol; Taragano, Fernando; Sarasola, Diego; Iturry, Mónica; Serrano, Cecilia; Raczkowski, Amalia; Allegri, Ricardo


    Several studies refer to the relationship between schizophrenia and cognitive dysfunctions. The most frequent disturbances accepted are the deficits in the executive, memory and verbal tests. However, there are few comparative data about the cognitive functioning of the different subtypes of schizophrenia. Analyze and compare the neuropsychological disturbances present in patients with paranoid and residual schizophrenia. Eleven patients with paranoid schizophrenia, eleven patients with residual schizophrenia (DSM-IV criteria), and thirty one normal subjects matched by age, educational level, and general cognitive level (Mini Mental State Examination (Folstein, 1975), were assessed with a semistructured psychiatric examination and an extensive neuropsychological battery. Significant differences were found in memory, language, and executive functions when schizophrenics were compared with normal subjects. Differences in similarities were found between paranoid and residual schizophrenics. Residual schizophrenics had more disturbances in neuropsychological tests in comparison with paranoid schizophrenics. Schizophrenics demonstrated disturbances in memory, language, executive functions and attention. Residual schizophrenics had more impairment in neuropsychological tests than paranoid schizophrenics.

  14. The effects of low-intensity cycling on cognitive performance following sleep deprivation. (United States)

    Slutsky, Alexis B; Diekfuss, Jed A; Janssen, James A; Berry, Nate T; Shih, Chia-Hao; Raisbeck, Louisa D; Wideman, Laurie; Etnier, Jennifer L


    This study examined the effect of 24h of sleep deprivation on cognitive performance and assessed the effect of acute exercise on cognitive performance following sleep deprivation. Young, active, healthy adults (n=24, 14 males) were randomized to control (age=24.7±3.7years, BMI=27.2±7.0) or exercise (age=25.3±3.3years, BMI=25.6±5.1) groups. Cognitive testing included a 5-min psychomotor vigilance task (PVT), three memory tasks with increasing cognitive load, and performance of the PVT a second time. On morning one, cognitive testing followed a typical night's sleep. Following 24-h of sustained wakefulness, cognitive testing was conducted again prior to and after the acute intervention. Participants in the exercise condition performed low-intensity cycling (∼40%HRR) for 15-min and those in the control condition sat quietly on the bike for 15-min. t-Tests revealed sleep deprivation negatively affected performance on the PVT, but did not affect memory performance. Following the acute intervention, there were no cognitive performance differences between the exercise and rested conditions. We provide support for previous literature suggesting that during simple tasks, sleep deprivation has negative effects on cognitive performance. Importantly, in contrast to previous literature which has shown multiple bouts of exercise adding to cognitive detriment when combined with sleep deprivation, our results did not reveal any further detriments to cognitive performance from a single-bout of exercise following sleep deprivation. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  15. Capturing cognitive causal paths in human reliability analysis with Bayesian network models

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Zwirglmaier, Kilian; Straub, Daniel; Groth, Katrina M.


    reIn the last decade, Bayesian networks (BNs) have been identified as a powerful tool for human reliability analysis (HRA), with multiple advantages over traditional HRA methods. In this paper we illustrate how BNs can be used to include additional, qualitative causal paths to provide traceability. The proposed framework provides the foundation to resolve several needs frequently expressed by the HRA community. First, the developed extended BN structure reflects the causal paths found in cognitive psychology literature, thereby addressing the need for causal traceability and strong scientific basis in HRA. Secondly, the use of node reduction algorithms allows the BN to be condensed to a level of detail at which quantification is as straightforward as the techniques used in existing HRA. We illustrate the framework by developing a BN version of the critical data misperceived crew failure mode in the IDHEAS HRA method, which is currently under development at the US NRC . We illustrate how the model could be quantified with a combination of expert-probabilities and information from operator performance databases such as SACADA. This paper lays the foundations necessary to expand the cognitive and quantitative foundations of HRA. - Highlights: • A framework for building traceable BNs for HRA, based on cognitive causal paths. • A qualitative BN structure, directly showing these causal paths is developed. • Node reduction algorithms are used for making the BN structure quantifiable. • BN quantified through expert estimates and observed data (Bayesian updating). • The framework is illustrated for a crew failure mode of IDHEAS.

  16. Performance variability is related to change in cognition: evidence from the Victoria Longitudinal Study. (United States)

    MacDonald, Stuart W S; Hultsch, David F; Dixon, Roger A


    Performance variability across repeated task administrations may be an important indicator of age-related cognitive functioning. In the present investigation, the authors examined whether age differences and change in inconsistency were related to 6-year (3 occasion) cognitive change. Inconsistency scores were computed from 4 reaction time tasks performed by 446 older adults (54-89 years). Replicating previous cross-sectional results, greater inconsistency was observed for older participants even after controlling for differences in response speed. New longitudinal results demonstrated (a) associations between inconsistency at baseline measurement and 6-year change in cognitive performance; (b) longitudinal change in inconsistency; and (c) intraindividual covariation between 6-year change in inconsistency and 6-year change in level of cognitive function. These findings support the view that performance variability serves as a marker of cognitive aging.

  17. Cognitive remediation therapy (CRT) benefits more to patients with schizophrenia with low initial memory performances. (United States)

    Pillet, Benoit; Morvan, Yannick; Todd, Aurelia; Franck, Nicolas; Duboc, Chloé; Grosz, Aimé; Launay, Corinne; Demily, Caroline; Gaillard, Raphaël; Krebs, Marie-Odile; Amado, Isabelle


    Cognitive deficits in schizophrenia mainly affect memory, attention and executive functions. Cognitive remediation is a technique derived from neuropsychology, which aims to improve or compensate for these deficits. Working memory, verbal learning, and executive functions are crucial factors for functional outcome. Our purpose was to assess the impact of the cognitive remediation therapy (CRT) program on cognitive difficulties in patients with schizophrenia, especially on working memory, verbal memory, and cognitive flexibility. We collected data from clinical and neuropsychological assessments in 24 patients suffering from schizophrenia (Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of mental Disorders-Fourth Edition, DSM-IV) who followed a 3-month (CRT) program. Verbal and visuo-spatial working memory, verbal memory, and cognitive flexibility were assessed before and after CRT. The Wilcoxon test showed significant improvements on the backward digit span, on the visual working memory span, on verbal memory and on flexibility. Cognitive improvement was substantial when baseline performance was low, independently from clinical benefit. CRT is effective on crucial cognitive domains and provides a huge benefit for patients having low baseline performance. Such cognitive amelioration appears highly promising for improving the outcome in cognitively impaired patients.

  18. Performance of a cognitive load inventory during simulated handoffs: Evidence for validity. (United States)

    Young, John Q; Boscardin, Christy K; van Dijk, Savannah M; Abdullah, Ruqayyah; Irby, David M; Sewell, Justin L; Ten Cate, Olle; O'Sullivan, Patricia S


    Advancing patient safety during handoffs remains a public health priority. The application of cognitive load theory offers promise, but is currently limited by the inability to measure cognitive load types. To develop and collect validity evidence for a revised self-report inventory that measures cognitive load types during a handoff. Based on prior published work, input from experts in cognitive load theory and handoffs, and a think-aloud exercise with residents, a revised Cognitive Load Inventory for Handoffs was developed. The Cognitive Load Inventory for Handoffs has items for intrinsic, extraneous, and germane load. Students who were second- and sixth-year students recruited from a Dutch medical school participated in four simulated handoffs (two simple and two complex cases). At the end of each handoff, study participants completed the Cognitive Load Inventory for Handoffs, Paas' Cognitive Load Scale, and one global rating item for intrinsic load, extraneous load, and germane load, respectively. Factor and correlational analyses were performed to collect evidence for validity. Confirmatory factor analysis yielded a single factor that combined intrinsic and germane loads. The extraneous load items performed poorly and were removed from the model. The score from the combined intrinsic and germane load items associated, as predicted by cognitive load theory, with a commonly used measure of overall cognitive load (Pearson's r = 0.83, p load during handoffs may be measured via a self-report measure. Additional work is required to develop an adequate measure of extraneous load.

  19. Structure-function relationships in elderly resting-state-networks : influence of age and cognitive performance


    Jockwitz, Christiane


    The aim of this work was to investigate the structure-function relationship in cognitive resting state networks in a large population-based elderly sample. The first study characterized the functional connectivity in four cognitive resting state networks with respect to age, gender and cognitive performance: Default Mode Network (DMN), executive, and left and right frontoparietal resting state networks. The second study assessed the structural correlates of the functional reorganization of th...

  20. The effect of breakfast cereal consumption on adolescents' cognitive performance and mood


    Defeyter, Margaret A.; Russo, Riccardo


    The aim of the current study was to investigate the effect of breakfast consumption on cognitive performance and mood in adolescents, and any interaction that breakfast consumption might have with cognitive load. The rationale for this approach was that the beneficial effects of any intervention with regard to cognitive function may be more readily apparent when more demands are placed on the system. Furthermore, as skipping breakfast is particularly prevalent within this age group, thus, we ...

  1. The Human Stain: Why Cognitivism Can't Tell Us What Cognition Is & What It Does

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Keijzer, F.; Lyon, P.; B. Wallace,


    What is cognition? It is now common knowledge that, so far, no one has a ready answer. It is much less generally acknowledged that this is a matter of strong concern when it comes to the further development of the cognitive sciences. We discuss how cognitivism provided a strongly human orientation

  2. Effect of cognitive biases on human-robot interaction: a case study of robot's misattribution


    Biswas, Mriganka; Murray, John


    This paper presents a model for developing long-term human-robot interactions and social relationships based on the principle of 'human' cognitive biases applied to a robot. The aim of this work is to study how a robot influenced with human ‘misattribution’ helps to build better human-robot interactions than unbiased robots. The results presented in this paper suggest that it is important to know the effect of cognitive biases in human characteristics and interactions in order to better u...

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


    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

  4. Object-Spatial Visualization and Verbal Cognitive Styles, and Their Relation to Cognitive Abilities and Mathematical Performance (United States)

    Haciomeroglu, Erhan Selcuk


    The present study investigated the object-spatial visualization and verbal cognitive styles among high school students and related differences in spatial ability, verbal-logical reasoning ability, and mathematical performance of those students. Data were collected from 348 students enrolled in Advanced Placement calculus courses at six high…

  5. Effects of blueberries on inflammation, motor performance and cognitive function (United States)

    Motor and cognitive function decrease with age, to include deficits in balance, coordination, gait, processing speed, executive function, memory, and spatial learning. These functional declines may be caused by long term increases in and susceptibility to oxidative stress and inflammation. Research ...

  6. Modeling Environmental Impacts on Cognitive Performance for Artificially Intelligent Entities (United States)


    Mavor, 1998). It should be noted that the authors mention the military user audience as a key constituent that must be able to trust the validity...modeling efforts in cognitive architectures. Ultimately, the Task Group 128 report finds that “modeling of post- receptive perceptual processes such


    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Harold S. Blackman; David I. Gertman; Ronald L. Boring


    This paper describes a cognitively based human reliability analysis (HRA) quantification technique for estimating the human error probabilities (HEPs) associated with operator and crew actions at nuclear power plants. The method described here, Standardized Plant Analysis Risk-Human Reliability Analysis (SPAR-H) method, was developed to aid in characterizing and quantifying human performance at nuclear power plants. The intent was to develop a defensible method that would consider all factors that may influence performance. In the SPAR-H approach, calculation of HEP rates is especially straightforward, starting with pre-defined nominal error rates for cognitive vs. action-oriented tasks, and incorporating performance shaping factor multipliers upon those nominal error rates.

  8. Listen to the noise: noise is beneficial for cognitive performance in ADHD. (United States)

    Söderlund, Göran; Sikström, Sverker; Smart, Andrew


    Noise is typically conceived of as being detrimental to cognitive performance. However, given the mechanism of stochastic resonance, a certain amount of noise can benefit performance. We investigate cognitive performance in noisy environments in relation to a neurocomputational model of attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) and dopamine. The Moderate Brain Arousal model (MBA; Sikström & Söderlund, 2007) suggests that dopamine levels modulate how much noise is required for optimal cognitive performance. We experimentally examine how ADHD and control children respond to different encoding conditions, providing different levels of environmental stimulation. Participants carried out self-performed mini tasks (SPT), as a high memory performance task, and a verbal task (VT), as a low memory task. These tasks were performed in the presence, or absence, of auditory white noise. Noise exerted a positive effect on cognitive performance for the ADHD group and deteriorated performance for the control group, indicating that ADHD subjects need more noise than controls for optimal cognitive performance. The positive effect of white noise is explained by the phenomenon of stochastic resonance (SR), i.e., the phenomenon that moderate noise facilitates cognitive performance. The MBA model suggests that noise in the environment, introduces internal noise into the neural system through the perceptual system. This noise induces SR in the neurotransmitter systems and makes this noise beneficial for cognitive performance. In particular, the peak of the SR curve depends on the dopamine level, so that participants with low dopamine levels (ADHD) require more noise for optimal cognitive performance compared to controls.

  9. Effect of multi-micronutrient-fortified rice on cognitive performance depends on premix composition and cognitive function tested

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Fiorentino, Marion; Perignon, Marlène; Khov, Kuong


    OBJECTIVE: Even though current policy is strongly focused on the crucial first '1000 days', it might be still possible to enhance cognitive function during the pre-adolescent and adolescent years by improving micronutrient status. In Cambodia, nutritional status is poor. Provision of rice fortified...... with micronutrients through a school meal programme (SMP) could be a cost-effective strategy to help improve health and school performance. The present study aimed to evaluate the effect of three different micronutrient-fortified rice formulations on cognitive function in Cambodian children. SETTING: Sixteen...

  10. Human likeness: cognitive and affective factors affecting adoption of robot-assisted learning systems (United States)

    Yoo, Hosun; Kwon, Ohbyung; Lee, Namyeon


    With advances in robot technology, interest in robotic e-learning systems has increased. In some laboratories, experiments are being conducted with humanoid robots as artificial tutors because of their likeness to humans, the rich possibilities of using this type of media, and the multimodal interaction capabilities of these robots. The robot-assisted learning system, a special type of e-learning system, aims to increase the learner's concentration, pleasure, and learning performance dramatically. However, very few empirical studies have examined the effect on learning performance of incorporating humanoid robot technology into e-learning systems or people's willingness to accept or adopt robot-assisted learning systems. In particular, human likeness, the essential characteristic of humanoid robots as compared with conventional e-learning systems, has not been discussed in a theoretical context. Hence, the purpose of this study is to propose a theoretical model to explain the process of adoption of robot-assisted learning systems. In the proposed model, human likeness is conceptualized as a combination of media richness, multimodal interaction capabilities, and para-social relationships; these factors are considered as possible determinants of the degree to which human cognition and affection are related to the adoption of robot-assisted learning systems.

  11. Expanding perspectives on cognition in humans, animals, and machines. (United States)

    Gomez-Marin, Alex; Mainen, Zachary F


    Over the past decade neuroscience has been attacking the problem of cognition with increasing vigor. Yet, what exactly is cognition, beyond a general signifier of anything seemingly complex the brain does? Here, we briefly review attempts to define, describe, explain, build, enhance and experience cognition. We highlight perspectives including psychology, molecular biology, computation, dynamical systems, machine learning, behavior and phenomenology. This survey of the landscape reveals not a clear target for explanation but a pluralistic and evolving scene with diverse opportunities for grounding future research. We argue that rather than getting to the bottom of it, over the next century, by deconstructing and redefining cognition, neuroscience will and should expand rather than merely reduce our concept of the mind. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  12. Emotional exhaustion and cognitive performance in apparently healthy teachers: a longitudinal multi-source study. (United States)

    Feuerhahn, Nicolas; Stamov-Roßnagel, Christian; Wolfram, Maren; Bellingrath, Silja; Kudielka, Brigitte M


    We investigate how emotional exhaustion (EE), the core component of burnout, relates to cognitive performance, job performance and health. Cognitive performance was assessed by self-rated cognitive stress symptoms, self-rated and peer-rated cognitive impairments in everyday tasks and a neuropsychological test of learning and memory (LGT-3); job performance and physical health were gauged by self-reports. Cross-sectional linear regression analyses in a sample of 100 teachers confirm that EE is negatively related to cognitive performance as assessed by self-rating and peer-rating as well as neuropsychological testing (all p Longitudinal linear regression analyses confirm similar trends (p longitudinal analyses, EE also significantly predicts physical health. Contrary to our expectations, EE does not affect job performance. When reversed causation is tested, none of the outcome variables at Time 1 predict EE at Time 2. This speaks against cognitive dysfunctioning serving as a vulnerability factor for exhaustion. In sum, results underpin the negative consequences of EE for cognitive performance and health, which are relevant for individuals and organizations alike. In this way, findings might contribute to the understanding of the burnout syndrome. Copyright © 2012 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.

  13. Motivated to do well: an examination of the relationships between motivation, effort, and cognitive performance in schizophrenia. (United States)

    Foussias, G; Siddiqui, I; Fervaha, G; Mann, S; McDonald, K; Agid, O; Zakzanis, K K; Remington, G


    The uncertain relationship between negative symptoms, and specifically motivational deficits, with cognitive dysfunction in schizophrenia is in need of further elucidation as it pertains to the interpretation of cognitive test results. Findings to date have suggested a possible mediating role of motivational deficits on cognitive test measures, although findings from formal examinations of effort using performance validity measures have been inconsistent. The aim of this study was to examine the relationships between motivation, effort exerted during cognitive testing, and cognitive performance in schizophrenia. Sixty-nine outpatients with schizophrenia or schizoaffective disorder were evaluated for psychopathology, severity of motivational deficits, effort exerted during cognitive testing, and cognitive performance. Motivation and degree of effort exerted during cognitive testing were significantly related to cognitive performance, specifically verbal fluency, verbal and working memory, attention and processing speed, and reasoning and problem solving. Further, effort accounted for 15% of the variance in cognitive performance, and partially mediated the relationship between motivation and cognitive performance. Examining cognitive performance profiles for individuals exerting normal or reduced effort revealed significant differences in global cognition, as well as attention/processing speed and reasoning and problem solving. These findings suggest that cognitive domains may be differentially affected by impairments in motivation and effort, and highlight the importance of understanding the interplay between motivation and cognitive performance deficits, which may guide the appropriate selection of symptom targets for promoting recovery in patients. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  14. Impact of Cognitive Architectures on Human-Computer Interaction (United States)


    activation, reinforced learning, emotion, semantic memory , episodic memory , and visual imagery.12 In 2010 Rosenbloom created a variant of the Soar...being added to almost every new version. In 2004 Nuxoll and Laird added episodic memory to the Soar architecture.11 In 2008 Laird presented...York (NY): Psychology Press; 2014; p. 1–50. 11. Nuxoll A, Laird JE. A cognitive model of episodic memory integrated with a general cognitive

  15. Perceptual-cognitive skill and the in situ performance of soccer players. (United States)

    van Maarseveen, Mariëtte J J; Oudejans, Raôul R D; Mann, David L; Savelsbergh, Geert J P


    Many studies have shown that experts possess better perceptual-cognitive skills than novices (e.g., in anticipation, decision making, pattern recall), but it remains unclear whether a relationship exists between performance on those tests of perceptual-cognitive skill and actual on-field performance. In this study, we assessed the in situ performance of skilled soccer players and related the outcomes to measures of anticipation, decision making, and pattern recall. In addition, we examined gaze behaviour when performing the perceptual-cognitive tests to better understand whether the underlying processes were related when those perceptual-cognitive tasks were performed. The results revealed that on-field performance could not be predicted on the basis of performance on the perceptual-cognitive tests. Moreover, there were no strong correlations between the level of performance on the different tests. The analysis of gaze behaviour revealed differences in search rate, fixation duration, fixation order, gaze entropy, and percentage viewing time when performing the test of pattern recall, suggesting that it is driven by different processes to those used for anticipation and decision making. Altogether, the results suggest that the perceptual-cognitive tests may not be as strong determinants of actual performance as may have previously been assumed.

  16. Differential Aging Trajectories of Modulation of Activation to Cognitive Challenge in APOE ε4 Groups: Reduced Modulation Predicts Poorer Cognitive Performance. (United States)

    Foster, Chris M; Kennedy, Kristen M; Rodrigue, Karen M


    The present study was designed to investigate the effect of a genetic risk factor for Alzheimer's disease (AD), ApolipoproteinE ε4 (APOEε4), on the ability of the brain to modulate activation in response to cognitive challenge in a lifespan sample of healthy human adults. A community-based sample of 181 cognitively intact, healthy adults were recruited from the Dallas-Fort Worth metroplex. Thirty-one APOEε4+ individuals (48% women), derived from the parent sample, were matched based on sex, age, and years of education to 31 individuals who were APOEε4-negative (APOEε4-). Ages ranged from 20 to 86 years of age. Blood oxygen level-dependent functional magnetic resonance imaging was collected during the performance of a visuospatial distance judgment task with three parametric levels of difficulty. Multiple regression was used in a whole-brain analysis with age, APOE group, and their interaction predicting functional brain modulation in response to difficulty. Results revealed an interaction between age and APOE in a large cluster localized primarily to the bilateral precuneus. APOEε4- individuals exhibited age-invariant modulation in response to task difficulty, whereas APOEε4+ individuals showed age-related reduction of modulation in response to increasing task difficulty compared with ε4- individuals. Decreased modulation in response to cognitive challenge was associated with reduced task accuracy as well as poorer name-face associative memory performance. Findings suggest that APOEε4 is associated with a reduction in the ability of the brain to dynamically modulate in response to cognitive challenge. Coupled with a significant genetic risk factor for AD, changes in modulation may provide additional information toward identifying individuals potentially at risk for cognitive decline associated with preclinical AD. SIGNIFICANCE STATEMENT Understanding how risk factors for Alzheimer's disease (AD) affect brain function and cognition in healthy adult samples

  17. Cholinergic modulation of cognition: Insights from human pharmacological functional neuroimaging (United States)

    Bentley, Paul; Driver, Jon; Dolan, Raymond J.


    Evidence from lesion and cortical-slice studies implicate the neocortical cholinergic system in the modulation of sensory, attentional and memory processing. In this review we consider findings from sixty-three healthy human cholinergic functional neuroimaging studies that probe interactions of cholinergic drugs with brain activation profiles, and relate these to contemporary neurobiological models. Consistent patterns that emerge are: (1) the direction of cholinergic modulation of sensory cortex activations depends upon top-down influences; (2) cholinergic hyperstimulation reduces top-down selective modulation of sensory cortices; (3) cholinergic hyperstimulation interacts with task-specific frontoparietal activations according to one of several patterns, including: suppression of parietal-mediated reorienting; decreasing ‘effort’-associated activations in prefrontal regions; and deactivation of a ‘resting-state network’ in medial cortex, with reciprocal recruitment of dorsolateral frontoparietal regions during performance-challenging conditions; (4) encoding-related activations in both neocortical and hippocampal regions are disrupted by cholinergic blockade, or enhanced with cholinergic stimulation, while the opposite profile is observed during retrieval; (5) many examples exist of an ‘inverted-U shaped’ pattern of cholinergic influences by which the direction of functional neural activation (and performance) depends upon both task (e.g. relative difficulty) and subject (e.g. age) factors. Overall, human cholinergic functional neuroimaging studies both corroborate and extend physiological accounts of cholinergic function arising from other experimental contexts, while providing mechanistic insights into cholinergic-acting drugs and their potential clinical applications. PMID:21708219


    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ken Wilund


    These data indicate that walking impairments in hemodialysis patients are not due exclusively to declines in physical function, but that cognitive-motor interference also plays a significant role. This has significant clinical importance, as therapies designed to improve walking performance and physical function, such as nutritional and exercise interventions, may need to be augmented with cognitive training in order to have maximum benefits.

  19. Epilepsy in the School Aged Child: Cognitive-Behavioral Characteristics and Effects on Academic Performance. (United States)

    Black, Kathryn C.; Hynd, George W.


    Children with epilepsy frequently display cognitive sequelae that are overlooked or misunderstood by educational personnel, yet may adversely impact academic performance. Reviews common cognitive-behavioral characteristics of children with epilepsy, typical effects of anticonvulsant medications, and various periictal phenomena and their relative…

  20. A Systematic Review of the Effect of Cognitive Strategies on Strength Performance. (United States)

    Tod, David; Edwards, Christian; McGuigan, Mike; Lovell, Geoff


    Researchers have tested the beliefs of sportspeople and sports medicine specialists that cognitive strategies influence strength performance. Few investigators have synthesised the literature. The specific objectives were to review evidence regarding (a) the cognitive strategy-strength performance relationship; (b) participant skill level as a moderator; and (c) cognitive, motivational, biomechanical/physiological, and emotional mediators. Studies were sourced via electronic databases, reference lists of retrieved articles, and manual searches of relevant journals. Studies had to be randomised or counterbalanced experiments with a control group or condition, repeated measures, and a quality control score above 0.5 (out of 1). Cognitive strategies included goal setting, imagery, self-talk, preparatory arousal, and free choice. Dependent variables included maximal strength, local muscular endurance, or muscular power. Globally, cognitive strategies were reliability associated with increased strength performance (results ranged from 61 to 65 %). Results were mixed when examining the effects of specific strategies on particular dependent variables, although no intervention had an overall negative influence. Indeterminate relationships emerged regarding hypothesised mediators (except cognitive variables) and participant skill level as a moderator. Although cognitive strategies influence strength performance, there are knowledge gaps regarding specific types of strength, especially muscular power. Cognitive variables, such as concentration, show promise as possible mediators.

  1. Digital Game-Based Learning Supports Student Motivation, Cognitive Success, and Performance Outcomes (United States)

    Woo, Jeng-Chung


    Traditional multimedia learning is primarily based on the cognitive load concept of information processing theory. Recent digital game-based learning (DGBL) studies have focused on exploring content support for learning motivation and related game characteristics. Motivation, volition, and performance (MVP) theory indicates that cognitive load and…

  2. High burden and frailty: association with poor cognitive performance in older caregivers living in rural areas

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Allan Gustavo Brigola


    Full Text Available Abstract Introduction: Older caregivers living in rural areas may be exposed to three vulnerable conditions, i.e., those related to care, their own aging, and their residence context. Objective: To analyze the association of burden and frailty with cognition performance in older caregivers in rural communities. Method: In this cross-sectional survey, 85 older caregivers who cared for dependent elders were included in this study. Global cognition (Addenbrooke's Cognitive Examination – Revised; Mini Mental State Examination, burden (Zarit Burden Interview and frailty (Fried's frailty phenotype were assessed. All ethical principles were observed. Results: Older caregivers were mostly women (76.7%; mean age was 69 years. Cognitive impairment was present in 15.3%, severe burden in 8.2%, frailty in 9.4%, and pre-frailty in 52.9% of the older caregivers. More severely burdened or frail caregivers had worse cognitive performance than those who were not, respectively (ANOVA test. Caregivers presenting a high burden level and some frailty degree (pre-frail or frail simultaneously were more likely to have a reduced global cognition performance. Conclusion: A significant number of older caregivers had low cognitive performance. Actions and resources to decrease burden and physical frailty may provide better cognition and well-being, leading to an improved quality of life and quality of the care provided by the caregivers.

  3. How Does Exercise Benefit Performance on Cognitive Tests in Primary-School Pupils? (United States)

    Hill, Liam J. B.; Williams, Justin H. G.; Aucott, Lorna; Thomson, Jenny; Mon-Williams, Mark


    Aim: We have previously demonstrated improved cognitive performance after a classroom-based exercise regime. In this study, we examined the reproducibility of this effect in a more socio-economically diverse sample and also investigated whether cognitive benefits of exercise were moderated by body mass index (BMI) or symptoms of…

  4. Short telomere length is associated with impaired cognitive performance in European ancestry cohorts

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Hägg, S.; Zhan, Y.; Karlsson, Robert; Gerritsen, L.; Ploner, A.; Lee, J.S.; Broer, L.; Deelen, J.; Marioni, R.E.; Wong, A.|info:eu-repo/dai/nl/29867291X; Lundquist, A.; Zhu, G.; Hansell, N.K.; Sillanpää, E.; Fedko, I O; Amin, N.A.; Beekman, Jeffrey M.; de Craen, A.J.M.; Degerman, S.; Harris, S.E.; Kan, K.-J.; Martin-Ruiz, C.M.; Montgomery, Grant W.; Adolfsson, A.N.; Reynolds, Chandra A.; Samani, Nilesh J; Suchiman, H.E.D.; Viljanen, A.; Von Zglinicki, T.; Wright, M J; Hottenga, J.J.; Boomsma, Dorret I; Rantanen, T.; Kaprio, J.A.; Nyholt, D.R.; Martin, N.G.|info:eu-repo/dai/nl/314123083; Nyberg, Lars; Adolfsson, R.; Kuh, D.; Starr, John M; Deary, Ian J; Slagboom, P Eline; Van Duijn, C.M.|info:eu-repo/dai/nl/068368232; Codd, V.; Pedersen, Nancy L.


    The association between telomere length (TL) dynamics on cognitive performance over the life-course is not well understood. This study meta-analyses observational and causal associations between TL and six cognitive traits, with stratifications on APOE genotype, in a Mendelian Randomization (MR)

  5. Association of interleukin-1 beta genetic polymorphisms with cognitive performance in elderly females without dementia


    Sasayama, Daimei; Hori, Hiroaki; Teraishi, Toshiya; Hattori, Kotaro; Ota, Miho; Matsuo, Junko; Kawamoto, Yumiko; Kinoshita, Yukiko; Higuchi, Teruhiko; Amano, Naoji; Kunugi, Hiroshi


    Interleukin-1 beta (IL-1 beta) is considered to have a role in age-related cognitive decline. A recent study has shown that a promoter polymorphism of the IL-1 beta gene (rs16944) is associated with cognitive performance in elderly males without dementia. In this study, we examined whether polymorphisms of the IL-1 beta gene also influence cognitive functions in elderly females. Cognitive functions were assessed by the Wechsler adult intelligence scale-revised (WAIS-R) in 99 elderly (>= 60 ye...

  6. WIPP performance assessment: impacts of human intrusion

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Anderson, D.R.; Hunter, R.L.; Bertram-Howery, S.G.; Lappin, A.R.


    The Waste Isolation Pilot Plant (WIPP) in southeastern New Mexico is a research and development facility that may become the USA's first and only mined geologic repository for transuranic waste. Human intrusion into the WIPP repository after closure has been shown by preliminary sensitivity analyses and calculations of consequences to be an important, and perhaps the most important, factor in long-term repository performance

  7. The impact of motivation on cognitive performance in an animal model of the negative and cognitive symptoms of schizophrenia. (United States)

    Ward, Ryan D; Winiger, Vanessa; Higa, Kerin K; Kahn, Julia B; Kandel, Eric R; Balsam, Peter D; Simpson, Eleanor H


    Interactions between motivation and cognition are implicated in producing functional impairments and poor quality of life in psychiatric patients. This interaction, however, is not well understood at either the behavioral or neural level. We developed a procedure for mice in which a cognitive measure, sustained attention, is modulated by a motivationally relevant signal that predicts reward probability on a trial-by-trial basis. Using this paradigm, we tested the interaction between motivation and cognition in mice that model the increased striatal D2 receptor activity observed in schizophrenia patients (D2R-OE mice). In control mice, attention was modulated by signaled-reward probability. In D2R-OE mice, however, attention was not modulated by reward-related cues. This impairment was not due to any global deficits in attention or maintenance of the trial-specific information in working memory. Turning off the transgene in D2R-OE mice rescued the motivational modulation of attention. These results indicate that deficits in motivation impair the ability to use reward-related cues to recruit attention and that improving motivation improves functional cognitive performance. These results further suggest that addressing motivational impairments in patients is critical to achieving substantive cognitive and functional gains. (c) 2015 APA, all rights reserved).

  8. Microvascular endothelial function and cognitive performance: The ELSA-Brasil cohort study. (United States)

    Brant, Luisa; Bos, Daniel; Araujo, Larissa Fortunato; Ikram, M Arfan; Ribeiro, Antonio Lp; Barreto, Sandhi M


    Impaired microvascular endothelial function may be implicated in the etiology of cognitive decline. Yet, current data on this association are inconsistent. Our objective is to investigate the relation of microvascular endothelial function to cognitive performance in the ELSA-Brasil cohort study. A total of 1521 participants from ELSA-Brasil free of dementia underwent peripheral arterial tonometry (PAT) to quantify microvascular endothelial function (PAT-ratio and mean baseline pulse amplitude (BPA)) and cognitive tests that covered the domains of memory, verbal fluency, and executive function at baseline. Cognitive tests in participants aged 55 years old and above were repeated during the second examination (mean follow-up: 3.5 (0.3) years). Linear regression and generalized linear models were used to evaluate the association between endothelial function, global cognitive performance, and performance on specific cognitive domains. In unadjusted cross-sectional analyses, we found that BPA and PAT-ratio were associated with worse global cognitive performance (mean difference for BPA: -0.07, 95% CI: -0.11; -0.03, p<0.01; mean difference for PAT-ratio: 0.11, 95% CI: 0.01; 0.20, p=0.02), worse performance on learning, recall, and word recognition tests (BPA: -0.87, 95% CI: -1.21; -0.52, p<0.01; PAT-ratio: 1.58, 95% CI: 0.80; 2.36, p<0.01), and only BPA was associated with worse performance in verbal fluency tests (-0.70, 95% CI: -1.19; -0.21, p<0.01). Adjustments for age, sex, and level of education rendered the associations statistically non-significant. Longitudinally, there was no association between microvascular endothelial and cognitive functions. The associations between microvascular endothelial function and cognition are explained by age, sex, and educational level. Measures of microvascular endothelial function may be of limited value with regard to preclinical cognitive deficits.

  9. Retrospective lifetime dietary patterns predict cognitive performance in community-dwelling older Australians. (United States)

    Hosking, Diane E; Nettelbeck, Ted; Wilson, Carlene; Danthiir, Vanessa


    Dietary intake is a modifiable exposure that may have an impact on cognitive outcomes in older age. The long-term aetiology of cognitive decline and dementia, however, suggests that the relevance of dietary intake extends across the lifetime. In the present study, we tested whether retrospective dietary patterns from the life periods of childhood, early adulthood, adulthood and middle age predicted cognitive performance in a cognitively healthy sample of 352 older Australian adults >65 years. Participants completed the Lifetime Diet Questionnaire and a battery of cognitive tests designed to comprehensively assess multiple cognitive domains. In separate regression models, lifetime dietary patterns were the predictors of cognitive factor scores representing ten constructs derived by confirmatory factor analysis of the cognitive test battery. All regression models were progressively adjusted for the potential confounders of current diet, age, sex, years of education, English as native language, smoking history, income level, apoE ɛ4 status, physical activity, other past dietary patterns and health-related variables. In the adjusted models, lifetime dietary patterns predicted cognitive performance in this sample of older adults. In models additionally adjusted for intake from the other life periods and mechanistic health-related variables, dietary patterns from the childhood period alone reached significance. Higher consumption of the 'coffee and high-sugar, high-fat extras' pattern predicted poorer performance on simple/choice reaction time, working memory, retrieval fluency, short-term memory and reasoning. The 'vegetable and non-processed' pattern negatively predicted simple/choice reaction time, and the 'traditional Australian' pattern positively predicted perceptual speed and retrieval fluency. Identifying early-life dietary antecedents of older-age cognitive performance contributes to formulating strategies for delaying or preventing cognitive decline.

  10. Common variants of the genes encoding erythropoietin and its receptor modulate cognitive performance in schizophrenia

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Kästner, Anne; Grube, Sabrina; El-Kordi, Ahmed


    -term memory readouts, with one particular combination of genotypes superior to all others (p 800), these associations were confirmed. A matching preclinical study with mice demonstrated cognitive processing speed and memory enhanced upon transgenic......Erythropoietin (EPO) improves cognitive performance in clinical studies and rodent experiments. We hypothesized that an intrinsic role of EPO for cognition exists, with particular relevance in situations of cognitive decline, which is reflected by associations of EPO and EPO receptor (EPOR......) genotypes with cognitive functions. To prove this hypothesis, schizophrenic patients (N > 1000) were genotyped for 5' upstream-located gene variants, EPO SNP rs1617640 (T/G) and EPORSTR(GA)(n). Associations of these variants were obtained for cognitive processing speed, fine motor skills and short...

  11. Socio-demographic aspects and cognitive performance of elderly adults living in rural areas

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Darlene Mara dos Santos Tavares


    Full Text Available Objective: To compare sociodemographic variables to error rate in categories of Mini-Mental State Examination (mmse among elderly adults both with and without cognitive impairment. Methodology: This is an analytical, cross-sectional study, conducted with 955 elderly adults living in rural areas of Minas Gerais municipality, Brazil. A descriptive analysis was carried out and the chi-square test was applied (p < 0.05. Results: No association was found between sex and cognitive impairment. For its part, cognitive impairment was associated with a wider age range, a lower educational level, and widowhood. With regard to mmse, categories most affected were Attention and Calculation, Visual Capacity Building and Memory Recall. Conclusion: The results from our study put emphasis on the need to carry out health activities in order to prevent cognitive impairment, and to improve functions related to patients’ cognitive performance. Descriptors: Health of the Elderly; Cognition; Rural Population (source: decs, bireme.

  12. The effect of mild motion sickness and sopite syndrome on multitasking cognitive performance. (United States)

    Matsangas, Panagiotis; McCauley, Michael E; Becker, William


    In this study, we investigated the effects of mild motion sickness and sopite syndrome on multitasking cognitive performance. Despite knowledge on general motion sickness, little is known about the effect of motion sickness and sopite syndrome on multitasking cognitive performance. Specifically, there is a gap in existing knowledge in the gray area of mild motion sickness. Fifty-one healthy individuals performed a multitasking battery. Three independent groups of participants were exposed to two experimental sessions. Two groups received motion only in the first or the second session, whereas the control group did not receive motion. Measurements of motion sickness, sopite syndrome, alertness, and performance were collected during the experiment Only during the second session, motion sickness and sopite syndrome had a significant negative association with cognitive performance. Significant performance differences between symptomatic and asymptomatic participants in the second session were identified in composite (9.43%), memory (31.7%), and arithmetic (14.7%) task scores. The results suggest that performance retention between sessions was not affected by mild motion sickness. Multitasking cognitive performance declined even when motion sickness and soporific symptoms were mild. The results also show an order effect. We postulate that the differential effect of session on the association between symptomatology and multitasking performance may be related to the attentional resources allocated to performing the multiple tasks. Results suggest an inverse relationship between motion sickness effects on performance and the cognitive effort focused on performing a task. Even mild motion sickness has potential implications for multitasking operational performance.

  13. Effectively Managing Nuclear Risk Through Human Performance Improvement

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Coe, Richard; Lake, Patricia


    The U.S. commercial nuclear industry has just completed an outstanding decade of plant performance. Safety levels and electric production are at unprecedented high levels and continue to exceed even high industry goals. Nuclear energy continues to keep the highest priority on performance improvement programs and highly trained and qualified people that maintain its record setting safety and reliability of operations. While the industry has maintained a high level of performance, the advent of deregulation and the consolidation of nuclear power plant ownership, as well as the current climate for concern about both rising energy costs and the availability of power, have raised the standard for nuclear energy's level of competitiveness in today's market place. The resulting challenge is how to more effectively manage risk and to improve performance even further in a generally high-performing industry. One of the most effective ways to develop this culture is to apply the principles of Hum an Performance Technology, or HPT. HPT is a relatively new field. Its principles are derived from the research and practice of behavioral and cognitive psychologists, instructional technologists, training designers, organizational developers, and various human resource specialists. Using the principles of HPT can help the nuclear industry successfully meet ever-changing environmental and business demands

  14. Subjective memory complaint only relates to verbal episodic memory performance in mild cognitive impairment (United States)

    Gifford, Katherine A.; Liu, Dandan; Damon, Stephen M.; Chapman, William G.; Romano, Raymond R.; Samuels, Lauren R.; Lu, Zengqi; Jefferson, Angela L.


    Background A cognitive concern from the patient, informant, or clinician is required for the diagnosis of mild cognitive impairment (MCI); however, the cognitive and neuroanatomical correlates of complaint are poorly understood. Objective We assessed how self-complaint relates to cognitive and neuroimaging measures in older adults with MCI. Method MCI participants were drawn from the Alzheimer’s Disease Neuroimaging Initiative and dichotomized into two groups based on the presence of self-reported memory complaint (no complaint n=191, 77±7 years; complaint n=206, 73±8 years). Cognitive outcomes included episodic memory, executive functioning, information processing speed, and language. Imaging outcomes included regional lobar volumes (frontal, parietal, temporal, cingulate) and specific medial temporal lobe structures (hippocampal volume, entorhinal cortex thickness, parahippocampal gyrus thickness). Results Linear regressions, adjusting for age, gender, race, education, Mini-Mental State Examination score, mood, and apolipoprotein E-4 status, found that cognitive complaint related to immediate (β=−1.07, pmemory performances assessed on a serial list learning task (β=−1.06, p=0.001) but no other cognitive measures or neuroimaging markers. Conclusions Self-reported memory concern was unrelated to structural neuroimaging markers of atrophy and measures of information processing speed, executive functioning, or language. In contrast, subjective memory complaint related to objective verbal episodic learning performance. Future research is warranted to better understand the relation between cognitive complaint and surrogate markers of abnormal brain aging, including Alzheimer’s disease, across the cognitive aging spectrum. PMID:25281602

  15. Subjective memory complaint only relates to verbal episodic memory performance in mild cognitive impairment. (United States)

    Gifford, Katherine A; Liu, Dandan; Damon, Stephen M; Chapman, William G; Romano Iii, Raymond R; Samuels, Lauren R; Lu, Zengqi; Jefferson, Angela L


    A cognitive concern from the patient, informant, or clinician is required for the diagnosis of mild cognitive impairment (MCI); however, the cognitive and neuroanatomical correlates of complaint are poorly understood. We assessed how self-complaint relates to cognitive and neuroimaging measures in older adults with MCI. MCI participants were drawn from the Alzheimer's Disease Neuroimaging Initiative and dichotomized into two groups based on the presence of self-reported memory complaint (no complaint n = 191, 77 ± 7 years; complaint n = 206, 73 ± 8 years). Cognitive outcomes included episodic memory, executive functioning, information processing speed, and language. Imaging outcomes included regional lobar volumes (frontal, parietal, temporal, cingulate) and specific medial temporal lobe structures (hippocampal volume, entorhinal cortex thickness, parahippocampal gyrus thickness). Linear regressions, adjusting for age, gender, race, education, Mini-Mental State Examination score, mood, and apolipoprotein E4 status, found that cognitive complaint related to immediate (β = -1.07, p memory performances assessed on a serial list learning task (β = -1.06, p = 0.001) but no other cognitive measures or neuroimaging markers. Self-reported memory concern was unrelated to structural neuroimaging markers of atrophy and measures of information processing speed, executive functioning, or language. In contrast, subjective memory complaint related to objective verbal episodic learning performance. Future research is warranted to better understand the relation between cognitive complaint and surrogate markers of abnormal brain aging, including Alzheimer's disease, across the cognitive aging spectrum.

  16. Cognitive Reserve and Social Capital Accrued in Early and Midlife Moderate the Relation of Psychological Stress to Cognitive Performance in Old Age. (United States)

    Ihle, Andreas; Oris, Michel; Sauter, Julia; Rimmele, Ulrike; Kliegel, Matthias


    The present study set out to investigate the relation of psychological stress to cognitive performance and its interplay with key life course markers of cognitive reserve and social capital in a large sample of older adults. We assessed cognitive performance (verbal abilities and processing speed) and psychological stress in 2,812 older adults. The Participants reported information on education, occupation, leisure activities, family, and close friends. Greater psychological stress was significantly related to lower performance in verbal abilities and processing speed. Moderation analyses suggested that the relations of psychological stress to cognitive performance were reduced in individuals with higher education, a higher cognitive level of the first profession practiced after education, a larger number of midlife leisure activities, a larger number of significant family members, and a larger number of close friends. Cognitive reserve and social capital accrued in early and midlife may reduce the detrimental influences of psychological stress on cognitive functioning in old age. © 2018 S. Karger AG, Basel.

  17. Cognitive performance on Piagetian tasks by Alzheimer's disease patients. (United States)

    Thornbury, J M


    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.

  18. Do Cognitive Styles Affect the Performance of System Development Groups? (United States)


    that a person is classified as one of 16 possible types: ISTJ, iSFJ, INFJ, INTJ, ISTP, INFP, ISFP, INTP , ESTP, ESFP, ENFP, ENTP, ESTJ, ESFJ, ENFJ , or...development groups and the relationship between these differences and system success or failure. Chapter II will discuss some different theories of cognitive...reasoning termed analytic and hueristic. Analytic individuals reduce problems to a set of underlying relationships . These relationships , frequently

  19. A new perspective on human reward research: How consciously and unconsciously perceived reward information influences performance.

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Zedelius, Claire; Veling, Harm; Custers, Ruud; Bijleveld, Erik; Chiew, K.S.; Aarts, Henk


    The question of how human performance can be improved through rewards is a recurrent topic of interest in psychology and neuroscience. Traditional, cognitive approaches to this topic have focused solely on consciously communicated rewards. Recently, a largely neuroscience-inspired perspective has

  20. A new perspective on human reward research: How consciously and unconsciously perceived reward information influences performance

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Zedelius, C.M.; Veling, H.P.; Custers, R.; Bijleveld, E.H.; Chiew, K.S.; Aarts, H.A.G.


    The question of how human performance can be improved through rewards is a recurrent topic of interest in psychology and neuroscience. Traditional, cognitive approaches to this topic have focused solely on consciously communicated rewards. Recently, a largely neuroscience-inspired perspective has

  1. Human Performance on the Traveling Salesman and Related Problems: A Review (United States)

    MacGregor, James N.; Chu, Yun


    The article provides a review of recent research on human performance on the traveling salesman problem (TSP) and related combinatorial optimization problems. We discuss what combinatorial optimization problems are, why they are important, and why they may be of interest to cognitive scientists. We next describe the main characteristics of human…

  2. Physical activity in the school setting: cognitive performance is not affected by three different types of acute exercise

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Van den Berg, Vera; Saliasi, Emi; De Groot, Renate; Jolles, Jelle; Chin A Paw, Mai; Singh, Amika


    Recent studies indicate that a single bout of physical exercise can have immediatepositive effects on cognitive performance of children and adolescents. However, thetype of exercise that affects cognitive performance the most in young adolescents isnot fully understood. Therefore, this controlled

  3. Students’ Spatial Performance: Cognitive Style and Sex Differences (United States)

    Hanifah, U.; Juniati, D.; Siswono, T. Y. E.


    This study aims at describing the students’ spatial abilities based on cognitive styles and sex differences. Spatial abilities in this study include 5 components, namely spatial perception, spatial visualization, mental rotation, spatial relations, and spatial orientation. This research is descriptive research with qualitative approach. The subjects in this research were 4 students of junior high school, there were 1 male FI, 1 male FD, 1 female FI, and 1 female FI. The results showed that there are differences in spatial abilities of the four subjects that are on the components of spatial visualization, mental rotation, and spatial relations. The differences in spatial abilities were found in methods / strategies used by each subject to solve each component problem. The differences in cognitive styles and sex suggested different choice of strategies used to solve problems. The male students imagined the figures but female students needed the media to solve the problem. Besides sex, the cognitive style differences also have an effect on solving a problem. In addition, FI students were not affected by distracting information but FD students could be affected by distracting information. This research was expected to contribute knowledge and insight to the readers, especially for math teachers in terms of the spatial ability of the students so that they can optimize their students’ spatial ability.

  4. Superior sensory, motor, and cognitive performance in elderly individuals with multi-year dancing activities

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jan-Christoph Kattenstroth


    Full Text Available Aging is associated with a progressive decline of mental and physical abilities. Considering the current demographic changes in many civilizations there is an urgent need for measures permitting an independent lifestyle into old age. The critical role of physical exercise in mediating and maintaining physical and mental fitness is well-acknowledged. Dance, in addition to physical activity, combines emotions, social interaction, sensory stimulation, motor coordination and music, thereby creating enriched environmental conditions for human individuals. Here we demonstrate the impact of multi-year (average 16.5 years amateur dancing (AD in a group of elderly subjects (aged 65 to 84 years as compared to education-, gender- and aged-matched controls (CG having no record of dancing or sporting activities. Besides posture and balance parameters, we tested reaction times, motor behavior, tactile and cognitive performance. In each of the different domains investigated, the AD group had a superior performance as compared to the non-dancer CG group. Analysis of individual performance revealed that the best participants of the AD group were not better than individuals of the CG group. Instead, the AD group lacked individuals showing poor performance, which was frequently observed for the CG group. This observation implies that maintaining a regular schedule of dancing into old age can preserve cognitive, motor and perceptual abilities and prevent them from degradation. We conclude that the far-reaching beneficial effects found in the AD group make dance, beyond its ability to facilitate balance and posture, a prime candidate for the preservation of everyday life competence of elderly individuals.

  5. Effects of Sleep Deprivation on the Cognitive Performance of Nurses Working in Shift. (United States)

    Kaliyaperumal, Deepalakshmi; Elango, Yaal; Alagesan, Murali; Santhanakrishanan, Iswarya


    Sleep deprivation and altered circadian rhythm affects the cognitive performance of an individual. Quality of sleep is compromised in those who are frequently involved in extended working hours and shift work which is found to be more common among nurses. Cognitive impairment leads to fatigability, decline in attention and efficiency in their workplace which puts their health and patients' health at risk. To find out the prevalence of sleep deprivation and its impact on cognition among shift working nurses. Sleep deprivation among 97 female and three male healthy nurses of age 20-50 years was assessed by Epworth sleepiness scale (ESS). Cognition was assessed by Montreal Cognitive Assessment (MoCA) questionnaire. Mobile applications were used to test their vigilance, reaction time, photographic memory and numerical cognition. The above said parameters were assessed during end of day shift and 3-4 days after start of night shift. Poor sleep quality was observed among 69% of shift working nurses according to ESS scores. The cognitive performance was analysed using Wilcoxon signed rank test. The MoCA score was found to be lesser among 66% of nurses during night (25.72) than day (26.81). During the night, 32% made more mathematical errors. It was also found that, 71%, 83% and 68% of the nurses scored lesser during night in the Stroop's colour test, vigilance test and memory tests respectively. Thus, impairment in cognitive performance was statistically significant (pworking nurses. Cognitive performance was found to be impaired among shift working nurses, due to poor sleep quality and decreased alertness during wake state. Thus, shift work poses significant cognitive risks in work performance of nurses.

  6. Cognitive penetrability and emotion recognition in human facial expressions

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Francesco eMarchi


    Full Text Available Do our background beliefs, desires, and mental images influence our perceptual experience of the emotions of others? In this paper, we will address the possibility of cognitive penetration of perceptual experience in the domain of social cognition. In particular, we focus on emotion recognition based on the visual experience of facial expressions. After introducing the current debate on cognitive penetration, we review examples of perceptual adaptation for facial expressions of emotion. This evidence supports the idea that facial expressions are perceptually processed as wholes. That is, the perceptual system integrates lower-level facial features, such as eyebrow orientation, mouth angle etc., into facial compounds. We then present additional experimental evidence showing that in some cases, emotion recognition on the basis of facial expression is sensitive to and modified by the background knowledge of the subject. We argue that such sensitivity is best explained as a difference in the visual experience of the facial expression, not just as a modification of the judgment based on this experience. The difference in experience is characterized as the result of the interference of background knowledge with the perceptual integration process for faces. Thus, according to the best explanation, we have to accept cognitive penetration in some cases of emotion recognition. Finally, we highlight a recent model of social vision in order to propose a mechanism for cognitive penetration used in the face-based recognition of emotion.

  7. The effect of preferred music on mood and performance in a high-cognitive demand occupation. (United States)

    Lesiuk, Teresa


    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.

  8. Martial Art Training and Cognitive Performance in Middle-Aged Adults. (United States)

    Douris, Peter; Douris, Christopher; Balder, Nicole; LaCasse, Michael; Rand, Amir; Tarapore, Freya; Zhuchkan, Aleskey; Handrakis, John


    Cognitive performance includes the processes of attention, memory, processing speed, and executive functioning, which typically declines with aging. Previous research has demonstrated that aerobic and resistance exercise improves cognitive performance immediately following exercise. However, there is limited research examining the effect that a cognitively complex exercise such as martial art training has on these cognitive processes. Our study compared the acute effects of 2 types of martial art training to aerobic exercise on cognitive performance in middle-aged adults. We utilized a repeated measures design with the order of the 3 exercise conditions randomly assigned and counterbalanced. Ten recreational middle-aged martial artists (mean age = 53.5 ± 8.6 years) participated in 3 treatment conditions: a typical martial art class, an atypical martial art class, and a one-hour walk at a self-selected speed. Cognitive performance was assessed by the Stroop Color and Word test. While all 3 exercise conditions improved attention and processing speed, only the 2 martial art conditions improved the highest order of cognitive performance, executive function. The effect of the 2 martial art conditions on executive function was not different. The improvement in executive function may be due to the increased cortical demand required by the more complex, coordinated motor tasks of martial art exercise compared to the more repetitive actions of walking.

  9. Martial Art Training and Cognitive Performance in Middle-Aged Adults

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Douris Peter


    Full Text Available Cognitive performance includes the processes of attention, memory, processing speed, and executive functioning, which typically declines with aging. Previous research has demonstrated that aerobic and resistance exercise improves cognitive performance immediately following exercise. However, there is limited research examining the effect that a cognitively complex exercise such as martial art training has on these cognitive processes. Our study compared the acute effects of 2 types of martial art training to aerobic exercise on cognitive performance in middle-aged adults. We utilized a repeated measures design with the order of the 3 exercise conditions randomly assigned and counterbalanced. Ten recreational middle-aged martial artists (mean age = 53.5 ± 8.6 years participated in 3 treatment conditions: a typical martial art class, an atypical martial art class, and a one-hour walk at a self-selected speed. Cognitive performance was assessed by the Stroop Color and Word test. While all 3 exercise conditions improved attention and processing speed, only the 2 martial art conditions improved the highest order of cognitive performance, executive function. The effect of the 2 martial art conditions on executive function was not different. The improvement in executive function may be due to the increased cortical demand required by the more complex, coordinated motor tasks of martial art exercise compared to the more repetitive actions of walking.

  10. Semivolatile compounds in schools and their influence on cognitive performance of children. (United States)

    Hutter, Hans-Peter; Haluza, Daniela; Piegler, Kathrin; Hohenblum, Philipp; Fröhlich, Marina; Scharf, Sigrid; Uhl, Maria; Damberger, Bernhard; Tappler, Peter; Kundi, Michael; Wallner, Peter; Moshammer, Hanns


    WHO's Children's Environment and Health Action Plan for Europe (CEHAPE) focuses on improvements of indoor environments where children spend most of their time. To investigate the relationship between school indoor air pollutants and cognitive performance in elementary school children, a multidisciplinary study was planned in all-day schools in Austria. In a cross-sectional study (LuKi study: Air and Children) indoor air pollutants were monitored in nine elementary all-day schools in urban and rural regions of Austria. In addition, school dust and suspended particulates (PM10, PM2.5) were measured, focusing on semivolatile compounds (e.g. phthalates, phosphororganic compounds [POC]). Health status and environmental conditions were determined by parents' questionnaire, cognitive function was measured by Standard Progressive Matrices (SPM). Overall, 596 children (6-8 years of age) were eligible for the study. Cognitive tests were performed in 436 children. Analysis showed significant correlations of tris(2-chlorethyl)-phosphate (TCEP) in PM10 and PM2.5 and school dust samples with cognitive performance. Cognitive performance decreased with increasing concentrations of TCEP. Furthermore, cognitive function decreased significantly with increasing CO2 levels. POC are widely used as plasticizers, flame retardants and floor sealing. This is the first report of a correlation between TCEP in indoor air samples and impairment of cognitive performance in school children. As a precautionary measure, it is recommended to prohibit the use of toxic chemicals and those suspected of a toxic potential in children's environments such as schools.

  11. Associations between pathologic tumor features and preadjuvant therapy cognitive performance in women diagnosed with breast cancer. (United States)

    Koleck, Theresa A; Bender, Catherine M; Sereika, Susan M; Ryan, Christopher M; Ghotkar, Puja; Brufsky, Adam M; Jankowitz, Rachel C; McAuliffe, Priscilla F; Clark, Beth Z; Conley, Yvette P


    Intertumor heterogeneity has been proposed as a potential mechanism to account for variability in cognitive performance in women diagnosed with breast cancer. The purpose of this study was to explore associations between variation in pathologic tumor features (PTFs) and variability in preadjuvant therapy cognitive performance in postmenopausal women newly diagnosed with early-stage breast cancer. Participants (N = 329) completed a comprehensive battery of neuropsychological tests to evaluate cognitive performance after primary surgery but prior to initiation of adjuvant anastrozole±chemotherapy. PTF data were abstracted from medical records. Robust multiple linear regression models were fit to estimate associations between individual PTFs and the cognitive function composite domain scores. All models controlled for age, estimated intelligence, and levels of depressive symptoms, anxiety, fatigue, and pain. Diagnosis of a HER2-positive tumor contributed to poorer verbal (b = -0.287, P = 0.018), visual (b = -0.270, P = 0.001), and visual working (b = -0.490, P Breast Cancer Assay Recurrence Score ® .) Our results suggest that certain PTFs related to more aggressive tumor phenotypes or inferior breast cancer prognosis may be implicated in poorer preadjuvant therapy cognitive performance. Follow-up studies that include a cognitive assessment before primary surgery should be conducted to further delineate the role of intertumor heterogeneity on cognitive performance. © 2016 The Authors. Cancer Medicine published by John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  12. Social cognition and work performance of persons with schizophrenia in a Chinese population. (United States)

    Lo, Panmi; Siu, Andrew M H


    Social-cognitive deficits have a significant impact on the community and vocational functioning of persons with schizophrenia. This study aimed to explore the relationship between social-cognitive abilities and vocational functioning in a Chinese population. We recruited 30 outpatients with schizophrenia to participate. We administered the Chinese Social Cognition and Screening Questionnaire (C-SCSQ) to assess Theory of Mind (ToM), attributional bias, and neurocognition; the Facial Expression Identification Test (FEIT) to assess emotion perception (EP) ability, and the Chinese Work Personality Profile (CWPP) to assess work performance in a simulated work setting. ToM showed a significant negative correlation with attributional bias. The neurocognitive measure displayed a significant positive correlation with ToM and EP. The structural equation model was a good fit to the data (CFI=0.91, RMSEA=0.12), and showed that social-cognitive abilities had a significant impact (-0.41) on work performance. Of the four social-cognitive domains, ToM and paranoid attributional style (PAS) contributed significantly to variations in work performance. These results support the theory that social-cognitive abilities have an impact on work performance. ToM has a positive impact whereas PAS has an adverse effect. Persons with schizophrenia present specific deficits in their social-cognitive abilities, which have significant impact on their work performance and employability.

  13. The association between cognition and academic performance in Ugandan children surviving malaria with neurological involvement.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Paul Bangirana

    Full Text Available The contribution of different cognitive abilities to academic performance in children surviving cerebral insult can guide the choice of interventions to improve cognitive and academic outcomes. This study's objective was to identify which cognitive abilities are associated with academic performance in children after malaria with neurological involvement.62 Ugandan children with a history of malaria with neurological involvement were assessed for cognitive ability (working memory, reasoning, learning, visual spatial skills, attention and academic performance (reading, spelling, arithmetic three months after the illness. Linear regressions were fit for each academic score with the five cognitive outcomes entered as predictors. Adjusters in the analysis were age, sex, education, nutrition, and home environment. Exploratory factor analysis (EFA and structural equation models (SEM were used to determine the nature of the association between cognition and academic performance. Predictive residual sum of squares was used to determine which combination of cognitive scores was needed to predict academic performance.In regressions of a single academic score on all five cognitive outcomes and adjusters, only Working Memory was associated with Reading (coefficient estimate = 0.36, 95% confidence interval = 0.10 to 0.63, p<0.01 and Spelling (0.46, 0.13 to 0.78, p<0.01, Visual Spatial Skills was associated with Arithmetic (0.15, 0.03 to 0.26, p<0.05, and Learning was associated with Reading (0.06, 0.00 to 0.11, p<0.05. One latent cognitive factor was identified using EFA. The SEM found a strong association between this latent cognitive ability and each academic performance measure (P<0.0001. Working memory, visual spatial ability and learning were the best predictors of academic performance.Academic performance is strongly associated with the latent variable labelled "cognitive ability" which captures most of the variation in the individual specific

  14. Opportunities for New Insights on the Life-Course Risks and Outcomes of Cognitive Decline in the Kavli HUMAN Project. (United States)

    Langa, Kenneth M; Cutler, David


    The Kavli HUMAN Project (KHP) will provide groundbreaking insights into how biological, medical, and social factors interact and impact the risks for cognitive decline from birth through older age. It will richly measure the effect of cognitive decline on the ability to perform key activities of daily living. In addition, due to its family focus, the KHP will measure the impact on family members, including the amount of time that family members spend providing care to older adults with dementia. It will also clarify the division of caregiving duties among family members and the effects on caregivers' work, family life, and balance thereof. At the same time, for care that the family cannot provide, it will clarify the extent to which cognitive decline impacts healthcare utilization and end-of-life decision making.

  15. Cognitive Performance Enhancement Induced by Caffeine, Carbohydrate and Guarana Mouth Rinsing during Submaximal Exercise

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Laura Pomportes


    Full Text Available The aim of this study was to investigate the influence of serial mouth rinsing (MR with nutritional supplements on cognitive performance (i.e., cognitive control and time perception during a 40-min submaximal exercise. Twenty-four participants completed 4 counterbalanced experimental sessions, during which they performed MR with either placebo (PL, carbohydrate (CHO: 1.6 g/25 mL, guarana complex (GUAc: 0.4 g/25 mL or caffeine (CAF: 67 mg/25 mL before and twice during exercise. The present study provided some important new insights regarding the specific changes in cognitive performance induced by nutritional supplements. The main results were: (1 CHO, CAF and GUA MR likely led participants to improve temporal performance; (2 CAF MR likely improved cognitive control; and (3 CHO MR led to a likely decrease in subjective perception of effort at the end of the exercise compared to PL, GUA and CAF. Moreover, results have shown that performing 40-min submaximal exercise enhances information processing in terms of both speed and accuracy, improves temporal performance and does not alter cognitive control. The present study opens up new perspectives regarding the use of MR to optimize cognitive performance during physical exercise.

  16. Cognitive Performance Enhancement Induced by Caffeine, Carbohydrate and Guarana Mouth Rinsing during Submaximal Exercise. (United States)

    Pomportes, Laura; Brisswalter, Jeanick; Casini, Laurence; Hays, Arnaud; Davranche, Karen


    The aim of this study was to investigate the influence of serial mouth rinsing (MR) with nutritional supplements on cognitive performance (i.e., cognitive control and time perception) during a 40-min submaximal exercise. Twenty-four participants completed 4 counterbalanced experimental sessions, during which they performed MR with either placebo (PL), carbohydrate (CHO: 1.6 g/25 mL), guarana complex (GUAc: 0.4 g/25 mL) or caffeine (CAF: 67 mg/25 mL) before and twice during exercise. The present study provided some important new insights regarding the specific changes in cognitive performance induced by nutritional supplements. The main results were: (1) CHO, CAF and GUA MR likely led participants to improve temporal performance; (2) CAF MR likely improved cognitive control; and (3) CHO MR led to a likely decrease in subjective perception of effort at the end of the exercise compared to PL, GUA and CAF. Moreover, results have shown that performing 40-min submaximal exercise enhances information processing in terms of both speed and accuracy, improves temporal performance and does not alter cognitive control. The present study opens up new perspectives regarding the use of MR to optimize cognitive performance during physical exercise.

  17. Associations between physical function, dual-task performance and cognition in patients with mild Alzheimer's disease. (United States)

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


    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.

  18. Performance analysis of adaptive modulation for cognitive radios with opportunistic access

    KAUST Repository

    Chen, Yunfei; Alouini, Mohamed-Slim; Tang, Liang


    The performance of adaptive modulation for cognitive radio with opportunistic access is analyzed by considering the effects of spectrum sensing and primary user traffic for Nakagami-m fading channels. Both the adaptive continuous rate scheme

  19. Outage performance analysis of underlay cognitive RF and FSO wireless channels

    KAUST Repository

    Ansari, Imran Shafique; Abdallah, Mohamed M.; Alouini, Mohamed-Slim; Qaraqe, Khalid A.


    In this work, the outage performance analysis of a dual-hop transmission system composed of asymmetric radio frequency (RF) channel cascaded with a free-space optical (FSO) link is presented. For the RF link, an underlay cognitive network

  20. Mathematical Modeling of Physical and Cognitive Performance Decrement from Mechanical and Inhalation Insults

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Stuhmiller, James H; Bykanova, Lucy; Chan, Philemon; Dang, Xinglai; Fournier, Adam; Long, Diane W; Lu, Zi; Masiello, Paul; Ng, Laurel; Niu, Eugene


    This report summarizes the first year of a 5-year program to develop physiologically and biomechanically based mathematical models that will allow the estimation of physical and cognitive performance...

  1. Temperament moderates the association between sleep duration and cognitive performance in children

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Vermeulen, Marije C M; Astill, Rebecca G; Benjamins, Jeroen S; Swaab, Hanna; Van Someren, Eus J W; van der Heijden, Kristiaan B

    The importance of sufficient sleep for cognitive performance has been increasingly recognized. Individual differences in susceptibility to effects of sleep restriction have hardly been investigated in children. We investigated whether individual differences in temperament moderate the association of

  2. Biological lifestyle factors in adult distance education: predicting cognitive and learning performance

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Gijselaers, Jérôme


    Gijselaers, H. J. M. (2015, 20 October). Biological lifestyle factors in adult distance education: predicting cognitive and learning performance. Presentation given for the inter-faculty Data Science group at the Open University of the Netherlands, Heerlen, The Netherlands.

  3. Cultural Factors Affecting the Differential Performance of Israeli and Palestinian Children on the Loewenstein Occupational Therapy Cognitive Assessment (United States)

    Josman, Naomi; Abdallah, Taisir M.; Engel-Yeger, Batya


    Cognitive performance is essential for children's functioning and may also predict school readiness. The suitability of Western standardized assessments for cognitive performance among children from different cultures needs to be elaborated. This study referred to the existence of differences in cognitive performance between and within children…

  4. Contagious yawning, social cognition, and arousal: an investigation of the processes underlying shelter dogs' responses to human yawns. (United States)

    Buttner, Alicia Phillips; Strasser, Rosemary


    Studies of contagious yawning have reported inconsistent findings regarding whether dogs exhibit this behavior and whether it is mediated by social-cognitive processes or the result of physiological arousal. We investigated why some dogs yawn in response to human yawns; particularly, whether these dogs are exceptional in their ability to understand human social cues or whether they were more physiologically aroused. Sixty shelter dogs were exposed to yawning and nonyawning control stimuli demonstrated by an unfamiliar human. We took salivary cortisol samples before and after testing to determine the role of arousal in yawn contagion. Dogs were tested on the object-choice task to assess their sensitivity for interpreting human social cues. We found that 12 dogs yawned only in response to human yawns (i.e., appeared to exhibit yawn contagion), though contagious yawning at the population level was not observed. Dogs that exhibited yawn contagion did not perform better on the object-choice task than other dogs, but their cortisol levels remained elevated after exposure to human yawning, whereas other dogs had reduced cortisol levels following yawning stimuli relative to their baseline levels. We interpret these findings as showing that human yawning, when presented in a stressful context, can further influence arousal in dogs, which then causes some to yawn. Although the precise social-cognitive mechanisms that underlie contagious yawning in dogs are still unclear, yawning between humans and dogs may involve some communicative function that is modulated by context and arousal.

  5. Sleep duration and age-related changes in brain structure and cognitive performance. (United States)

    Lo, June C; Loh, Kep Kee; Zheng, Hui; Sim, Sam K Y; Chee, Michael W L


    To investigate the contribution of sleep duration and quality to age-related changes in brain structure and cognitive performance in relatively healthy older adults. Community-based longitudinal brain and cognitive aging study using a convenience sample. Participants were studied in a research laboratory. Relatively healthy adults aged 55 y and older at study commencement. N/A. Participants underwent magnetic resonance imaging and neuropsychological assessment every 2 y. Subjective assessments of sleep duration and quality and blood samples were obtained. Each hour of reduced sleep duration at baseline augmented the annual expansion rate of the ventricles by 0.59% (P = 0.007) and the annual decline rate in global cognitive performance by 0.67% (P = 0.050) in the subsequent 2 y after controlling for the effects of age, sex, education, and body mass index. In contrast, global sleep quality at baseline did not modulate either brain or cognitive aging. High-sensitivity C-reactive protein, a marker of systemic inflammation, showed no correlation with baseline sleep duration, brain structure, or cognitive performance. In healthy older adults, short sleep duration is associated with greater age-related brain atrophy and cognitive decline. These associations are not associated with elevated inflammatory responses among short sleepers. Lo JC, Loh KK, Zheng H, Sim SK, Chee MW. Sleep duration and age-related changes in brain structure and cognitive performance.

  6. Stress and Cognitive Reserve as independent factors of neuropsychological performance in healthy elderly

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    João Carlos Centurion Cabral

    Full Text Available Abstract Exposure to high levels of cortisol and self-reported stress, as well as cognitive reserve, have been linked to Alzheimer’s disease pathology. However, there are no studies on the interaction of these variables. The present study aims to assess the associations of measures of cortisol, self-reported stress, and cognitive reserve with neuropsychological performance in healthy elderly people; besides, to test the interactions between these variables. Cross-sectional analyzes were conducted using data on stress, cognitive reserve and clinical conditions in 145 healthy elderly adults. A neuropsychological battery was used to assess executive functions, verbal memory and processing speed. Measurement of salivary cortisol at the circadian nadir was taken. A negative association between different stress measures and performance on tasks of memory, executive functions and processing speed was observed. Elderly people with higher cognitive reserve showed superior performance on all neuropsychological measures. No significant interaction between stress and cognitive reserve to neuropsychological performance was observed. These results indicate that older adults with high levels of stress and reduced cognitive reserve may be more susceptible to cognitive impairment.

  7. Positive effects of noise on cognitive performance: Explaining the moderate brain arousal model


    Söderlund, Göran; sikström, Sverker


    Distractors and environmental noise has long been regarded as detrimental for different kinds of cognitive processing. In particular children with Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) are extremely sensitive to distraction from task irrelevant stimuli. However, recently the opposite has been shown in an empirical study by Söderlund et al. (2007). Exposure to auditory white noise facilitated cognitive performance in ADHD children whereas control children performed worse in the noise...

  8. General intelligence in another primate: individual differences across cognitive task performance in a New World monkey (Saguinus oedipus.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Konika Banerjee

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: Individual differences in human cognitive abilities show consistently positive correlations across diverse domains, providing the basis for the trait of "general intelligence" (g. At present, little is known about the evolution of g, in part because most comparative studies focus on rodents or on differences across higher-level taxa. What is needed, therefore, are experiments targeting nonhuman primates, focusing on individual differences within a single species, using a broad battery of tasks. To this end, we administered a large battery of tasks, representing a broad range of cognitive domains, to a population of captive cotton-top tamarin monkeys (Saguinus oedipus. METHODOLOGY AND RESULTS: Using a Bayesian latent variable model, we show that the pattern of correlations among tasks is consistent with the existence of a general factor accounting for a small but significant proportion of the variance in each task (the lower bounds of 95% Bayesian credibility intervals for correlations between g and task performance all exceed 0.12. CONCLUSION: Individual differences in cognitive abilities within at least one other primate species can be characterized by a general intelligence factor, supporting the hypothesis that important aspects of human cognitive function most likely evolved from ancient neural substrates.

  9. Diachrony in Human Cognition and Problem Solving

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Gahrn-Andersen, Rasmus


    Problem solving should not be reduced to situated or localized activity since cognizers also draw on non-local resources that are not actually experienced but which nevertheless impart on their situated cognition. A Varelianinspired epistemology neglects this nonlocality, which is a vital trait...

  10. Surgical Technology Integration with Tools for Cognitive Human Factors (STITCH) (United States)


    Measurement Tool We conducted another round of data collection using the daVinci Surgical System at the University of Kentucky Hospital in May. In this...9 3. Tools and Display Technology...considering cognitive and environmental factors such as mental workload, stress, situation awareness, and level of comfort with complex tools . To

  11. Study Protocol on Cognitive Performance in Bulgaria, Croatia, and the Netherlands: The Normacog Brief Battery

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Lea Jakob


    Full Text Available The Normacog Brief Battery (NBB provides a comprehensive overview of an individual’s cognitive functioning within a short amount of time. It was originally developed for the Spanish population in Spain. However, there is a considerable need for brief batteries in clinical neuropsychological assessment, especially in eastern European countries. Cultural background and other individual characteristics—such as age, level of education, and sex—are shown to influence both cognition and patients’ performance on neuropsychological tests. Therefore, it is important to develop understanding of how and why culture impacts on cognitive testing and determine which sociodemographic variables affect cognitive performance. The current study aims to translate, adapt, and standardize the NBB in Bulgaria, Croatia, and the Netherlands, and to analyze the effect of sex, age, and education level on cognitive performance between these three countries. This brief battery assesses eleven cognitive domains, including those most currently relevant in cognition such as premorbid intelligence, attention, executive function, processing speed, and memory. The translation and adaptation of the battery for different cultures will be done using the back-translation process. After exclusion criteria, the current study will include a total sample of three hundred participants (≥18 years old. The samples of 100 participants per country will be balanced through the consideration of their age and level of education. Effects of the sociodemographic variables (age, level of education, and sex on cognitive performance are expected. Furthermore, this relationship is expected to differ across countries. A multivariate hierarchical linear regression will be used and exploratory analysis will be carried out to investigate further effects. The results will be particularly valuable for future research and assessment in cognitive performance. The growing demand for accurate and fast

  12. A comparison of cognitive performance decreases during acute, progressive fatigue arising from different concurrent stressors. (United States)

    Fogt, Donovan L; Kalns, John E; Michael, Darren J


    Fatigue is known to impair cognitive performance, but it remains unclear whether concurrent common stressors affect cognitive performance similarly. We used the Stroop Color-Word Conflict Test to assess cognitive performance over 24 hours for four groups: control, sleep-deprived (SD), SD + energy deficit, and SD + energy deficit + fluid restricted. Fatigue levels were quantified using the Profile of Mood States (POMS) survey. Linear mixed-effects (LME) models allowed for testing of group-specific differences in cognitive performance while accounting for subject-level variation. Starting fatigue levels were similar among all groups, while 24-hour fatigue levels differed significantly. For each cognitive performance test, results were modeled separately. The simplest LME model contained a significant fixed-effects term for slope and intercept. Moreover, the simplest LME model used a single slope coefficient to fit data from all four groups, suggesting that loss in cognitive performance over a 24-hour duty cycle with respect to fatigue level is similar regardless of the cause.

  13. Stop of loss of cognitive performance during rehabilitation after total hip arthroplasty-prospective controlled study. (United States)

    Brem, Matthias H; Lehrl, Siegfried; Rein, Anna K; Massute, Sylvia; Schulz-Drost, Stefan; Gelse, Kolja; Schlechtweg, Phillip M; Hennig, Friedrich F; Olk, Alexander; Jacob, Harald J; Gusinde, Johannes


    Prolonged hospitalization is known to be associated with a loss of cognitive performance. Does playing video games (VGs) developed to improve cognitive properties delay this loss or even lead to an increase in cognitive performance? We performed a 10-day longitudinal study of patients who received total hip arthroplasty. We compared 16 patients (6 male) aged 66 ± 9 years (mean ± standard deviation) who played Dr. Kawashima's Brain Training: How Old Is Your Brain? (Nintendo; Redmond, Washington) on a Nintendo DS handheld console with 16 control patients (6 male) aged 69 ± 14 years. We measured cognitive performance 1 day preoperation, as well as on days 2 and 9 postoperation. With the daily exercise of a specific VG by the play group, the patients' fluid intelligence (median intelligence quotient 99-106), working memory capacity, and rate of information processing significantly improved over the course of 7 postoperative days. The cognitive performance of the control group did not increase. However, the memory spans of both groups did not systematically change. Exercise with VGs can prevent the loss of cognitive performance during prolonged hospitalization.

  14. Social Cognition in Williams Syndrome: Relations Between Performance on the Social Attribution Task and Cognitive and Behavioral Characteristics

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Faye eVan der Fluit


    Full Text Available Williams syndrome (WS is a developmental disorder of genetic origin, with characteristic cognitive and personality profiles. Studies of WS point to an outgoing and gregarious personality style, often contrasted with autism spectrum disorders (ASDs; however, recent research has uncovered underlying social reciprocity difficulties in people with WS. Participants in the current study included 24 children with WS ages 8 through 15. A lab-based measure of social perception and social cognition was administered (Social Attribution Test, as well as an intellectual functioning measure (KBIT-II and parent reports of communication and reciprocal social skills (Social Communication Questionnaire, Social Responsiveness Scale. Relations between social cognition, cognitive abilities, and social-communication were examined. Results demonstrated relations between parent-reported social reciprocity and the typicality of the responses provided in the lab-based measure, even once variability in intellectual functioning was taken into account. In addition, a significant improvement in performance was seen with the added scaffolding particularly for participants with stronger intellectual functioning.

  15. Identification of the social and cognitive processes underlying human cumulative culture. (United States)

    Dean, L G; Kendal, R L; Schapiro, S J; Thierry, B; Laland, K N


    The remarkable ecological and demographic success of humanity is largely attributed to our capacity for cumulative culture, with knowledge and technology accumulating over time, yet the social and cognitive capabilities that have enabled cumulative culture remain unclear. In a comparative study of sequential problem solving, we provided groups of capuchin monkeys, chimpanzees, and children with an experimental puzzlebox that could be solved in three stages to retrieve rewards of increasing desirability. The success of the children, but not of the chimpanzees or capuchins, in reaching higher-level solutions was strongly associated with a package of sociocognitive processes-including teaching through verbal instruction, imitation, and prosociality-that were observed only in the children and covaried with performance.

  16. Intraindividual variability in cognitive performance in persons with chronic fatigue syndrome. (United States)

    Fuentes, K; Hunter, M A; Strauss, E; Hultsch, D F


    Studies of cognitive performance among persons with chronic fatigue syndrome (CFS) have yielded inconsistent results. We sought to contribute to findings in this area by examining intraindividual variability as well as level of performance in cognitive functioning. A battery of cognitive measures was administered to 14 CFS patients and 16 healthy individuals on 10 weekly occasions. Analyses comparing the two groups in terms of level of performance defined by latency and accuracy scores revealed that the CFS patients were slower but not less accurate than healthy persons. The CFS group showed greater intraindividual variability (as measured by intraindividual standard deviations and coefficients of variation) than the healthy group, although the results varied by task and time frame. Intraindividual variability was found to be stable across time and correlated across tasks at each testing occasion. Intraindividual variability also uniquely differentiated the groups. The present findings support the proposition that intraindividual variability is a meaningful indicator of cognitive functioning in CFS patients.

  17. Residual Negative Symptoms Differentiate Cognitive Performance in Clinically Stable Patients with Schizophrenia and Bipolar Disorder

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Rajeev Krishnadas


    Full Text Available Cognitive deficits in various domains have been shown in patients with bipolar disorder and schizophrenia. The purpose of the present study was to examine if residual psychopathology explained the difference in cognitive function between clinically stable patients with schizophrenia and bipolar disorder. We compared the performance on tests of attention, visual and verbal memory, and executive function of 25 patients with schizophrenia in remission and 25 euthymic bipolar disorder patients with that of 25 healthy controls. Mediation analysis was used to see if residual psychopathology could explain the difference in cognitive function between the patient groups. Both patient groups performed significantly worse than healthy controls on most cognitive tests. Patients with bipolar disorder displayed cognitive deficits that were milder but qualitatively similar to those of patients with schizophrenia. Residual negative symptoms mediated the difference in performance on cognitive tests between the two groups. Neither residual general psychotic symptoms nor greater antipsychotic doses explained this relationship. The shared variance explained by the residual negative and cognitive deficits that the difference between patient groups may be explained by greater frontal cortical neurophysiological deficits in patients with schizophrenia, compared to bipolar disorder. Further longitudinal work may provide insight into pathophysiological mechanisms that underlie these deficits.

  18. Humanity in the Digital Age: Cognitive, Social, Emotional, and Ethical Implications (United States)

    Yamamoto, Junko; Ananou, Simeon


    Even though technology has brought great benefits to current society, there are also indications that the manner in which people use technology has undermined their humanity in some respects. In this article the authors frame human nature in terms of four dimensions: cognition, social interaction, emotion, and ethics. We argue that while basic…

  19. Perceptual-cognitive expertise in sport: some considerations when applying the expert performance approach. (United States)

    Williams, A Mark; Ericsson, K Anders


    The number of researchers studying perceptual-cognitive expertise in sport is increasing. The intention in this paper is to review the currently accepted framework for studying expert performance and to consider implications for undertaking research work in the area of perceptual-cognitive expertise in sport. The expert performance approach presents a descriptive and inductive approach for the systematic study of expert performance. The nature of expert performance is initially captured in the laboratory using representative tasks that identify reliably superior performance. Process-tracing measures are employed to determine the mechanisms that mediate expert performance on the task. Finally, the specific types of activities that lead to the acquisition and development of these mediating mechanisms are identified. General principles and mechanisms may be discovered and then validated by more traditional experimental designs. The relevance of this approach to the study of perceptual-cognitive expertise in sport is discussed and suggestions for future work highlighted.

  20. Intraindividual variability across cognitive domains: investigation of dispersion levels and performance profiles in older adults. (United States)

    Hilborn, Jennifer V; Strauss, Esther; Hultsch, David F; Hunter, Michael A


    A growing body of research suggests that substantial variability exists among cognitive abilities within individuals. This within-person variability across cognitive domains is termed dispersion. The present study investigated the relationship between aging and dispersion of cognitive functions both quantitatively (overall levels of dispersion) and qualitatively (patterns of dispersion) in a sample of 304 nondemented, older adults aged 64 to 92 years (M = 74.02). Quantitatively, higher levels of dispersion were observed in the old-old adults (aged 75-92 years) and those identified as having experienced cognitive decline, suggesting that dispersion level may serve as a marker of cognitive integrity. Qualitatively, three distinct dispersion profiles were identified through clustering methods, and these were found to be related to demographic, health, and performance characteristics of the individuals, suggesting that patterns of dispersion may be meaningful indicators of individual differences.

  1. Cognitive stimulation in children at social risk: its transference to school performance

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Celina Korzeniowski


    Full Text Available The present study set out to evaluate the effectiveness of a group cognitive intervention aimed at promoting executive functions in children at social risk. The quasi-experimental, pretest-posttest design included a control group. The sample was made up of 178 children (52% boys, aged 6-10. The children were evaluated by means of a battery of neuropsychological EF tests and a teacher-rated behavioral EF scale. The intervention program included 30 group cognitive stimulation sessions that increased in difficulty and were embedded into school curr´ıcula. Trained children performed better in terms of cognitive flexibility, planning, metacognition and inhibitory control, as compared to their baseline values and to children in the control group. This study provides new evidence of the effectiveness of cognitive interventions for children and of children’s capability to transfer cognitive improvements to daily school activities.

  2. Activities, self-referent memory beliefs, and cognitive performance: evidence for direct and mediated relations. (United States)

    Jopp, Daniela; Hertzog, Christopher


    In this study, the authors investigated the role of activities and self-referent memory beliefs for cognitive performance in a life-span sample. A factor analysis identified 8 activity factors, including Developmental Activities, Experiential Activities, Social Activities, Physical Activities, Technology Use, Watching Television, Games, and Crafts. A second-order general activity factor was significantly related to a general factor of cognitive function as defined by ability tests. Structural regression models suggested that prediction of cognition by activity level was partially mediated by memory beliefs, controlling for age, education, health, and depressive affect. Models adding paths from general and specific activities to aspects of crystallized intelligence suggested additional unique predictive effects for some activities. In alternative models, nonsignificant effects of beliefs on activities were detected when cognition predicted both variables, consistent with the hypothesis that beliefs derive from monitoring cognition and have no influence on activity patterns. PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2008 APA, all rights reserved.

  3. What Does Eye-Blink Rate Variability Dynamics Tell Us About Cognitive Performance?

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Rafal Paprocki


    Full Text Available Cognitive performance is defined as the ability to utilize knowledge, attention, memory, and working memory. In this study, we briefly discuss various markers that have been proposed to predict cognitive performance. Next, we develop a novel approach to characterize cognitive performance by analyzing eye-blink rate variability dynamics. Our findings are based on a sample of 24 subjects. The subjects were given a 5-min resting period prior to a 10-min IQ test. During both stages, eye blinks were recorded from Fp1 and Fp2 electrodes. We found that scale exponents estimated for blink rate variability during rest were correlated with subjects' performance on the subsequent IQ test. This surprising phenomenon could be explained by the person to person variation in concentrations of dopamine in PFC and accumulation of GABA in the visual cortex, as both neurotransmitters play a key role in cognitive processes and affect blinking. This study demonstrates the possibility that blink rate variability dynamics at rest carry information about cognitive performance and can be employed in the assessment of cognitive abilities without taking a test.

  4. Human performance in the nuclear industry

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Koncz, Steven M.


    Management of employees human performance in the Nuclear Industry is endemic to their safety when working. In the United Kingdom it has been a key focus since 2003. Employees were made aware through a detailed program of workshops, of the error prevention methods and how to apply them. The use of effective incident barriers became embedded in the safety culture. The methodology implemented was personal ownership, to enable self assessment of behaviors, attitudes and beliefs. When put in place, there are many specific barriers, which can reduce the chances of an error occurring. They come under the headings of organisational, procedural and physical barriers. All of these were used in some way and continue to be reinforced on a daily basis. Specific barriers are applied in specific situations. However, some general ones are also effective. In common use are the Take 2 or Take 5 Minutes, point of work risk assessments. Applying the human performance barrier Independent Verification (I.V.) would result in 'Take 3 and I.V.' This would independently double check the risk assessment. New ways of thinking are required to continuously improve and evolve. Results of the error reduction process included; reduced workload, increased plant reliability, efficiencies and productivity. (author)

  5. Human performance in the nuclear industry

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Koncz, S.M.


    Management of employees human performance in the Nuclear Industry is endemic to their safety when working. In the United Kingdom it has been a key focus since 2003. Employees were made aware through a detailed program of workshops, of the error prevention methods and how to apply them. The use of effective incident barriers became embedded in the safety culture. The methodology implemented was personal ownership, to enable self assessment of behaviors, attitudes and beliefs. When put in place, there are many specific barriers, which can reduce the chances of an error occurring. They come under the headings of organisational, procedural and physical barriers. All of these were used in some way and continue to be reinforced on a daily basis. Specific barriers are applied in specific situations. However, some general ones are also effective. In common use are the Take 2 or Take 5 Minutes, point of work risk assessments. Applying the human performance barrier Independent Verification (I.V.) would result in 'Take 3 and I.V.' This would independently double check the risk assessment. New ways of thinking are required to continuously improve and evolve. Results of the error reduction process included; reduced workload, increased plant reliability, efficiencies and productivity. (author)

  6. Do Glucose and Caffeine Nasal Sprays Influence Exercise or Cognitive Performance? (United States)

    De Pauw, Kevin; Roelands, Bart; Van Cutsem, Jeroen; Decroix, Lieselot; Valente, Angelica; Taehee, Kim; Lettan, Robert B; Carrillo, Andres E; Meeusen, Romain


    Nasal spray (NAS) containing caffeine (CAF) or glucose (GLUC) activates sensory(motor) cortices. To investigate the influence of CAF or GLUC NAS on exercise and cognitive performance. Eleven male subjects (age 22 ± 2 y) performed a maximal cycle test and 2 familiarization and 3 experimental trials. Each trial included a 30-s Wingate test and a 30-min time-trial (TT) performance test interspersed by 15 min of rest. Before and after each exercise test a Stroop task was conducted. Placebo NAS with or without CAF or GLUC was provided before each exercise session and at each completed 25% of the TT. Exercise-performance, physiological, and cognitive measures were obtained. Magnitude-based inferences determined the likelihood that NAS solutions would be beneficial, trivial, or negative to exercise-performance measures based on the smallest worthwhile effect. Physiological and cognitive measures were analyzed using (non)parametric tests (P performance enhancements were found for both substances. In addition, no significant differences in physiological and cognitive measures were observed. In line with mouth rinsing, GLUC was shown to substantially enhance endurance performance, probably due to the activation of the olfactory pathway and/or extra-oral sweet-taste receptors. GLUC NAS enhances endurance performance, which indicates a novel administration route. The higher activity in sensory brain cortices probably elicited the ergogenic effect. However, no further physiological and cognitive changes occurred, indicating that higher doses of substrates might be required.

  7. Test Takers' Performance Appraisals, Appraisal Calibration, and Cognitive and Metacognitive Strategy Use (United States)

    Phakiti, Aek


    The current study explores the nature and relationships among test takers' performance appraisals, appraisal calibration, and reported cognitive and metacognitive strategy use in a language test situation. Performance appraisals are executive processes of strategic competence for judging test performance (e.g., evaluating the correctness or…

  8. Decision Support System Requirements Definition for Human Extravehicular Activity Based on Cognitive Work Analysis. (United States)

    Miller, Matthew James; McGuire, Kerry M; Feigh, Karen M


    The design and adoption of decision support systems within complex work domains is a challenge for cognitive systems engineering (CSE) practitioners, particularly at the onset of project development. This article presents an example of applying CSE techniques to derive design requirements compatible with traditional systems engineering to guide decision support system development. Specifically, it demonstrates the requirements derivation process based on cognitive work analysis for a subset of human spaceflight operations known as extravehicular activity . The results are presented in two phases. First, a work domain analysis revealed a comprehensive set of work functions and constraints that exist in the extravehicular activity work domain. Second, a control task analysis was performed on a subset of the work functions identified by the work domain analysis to articulate the translation of subject matter states of knowledge to high-level decision support system requirements. This work emphasizes an incremental requirements specification process as a critical component of CSE analyses to better situate CSE perspectives within the early phases of traditional systems engineering design.

  9. Cognitive performance in relapsing remitting multiple sclerosis: A longitudinal study in daily practice using a brief computerized cognitive battery

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jacquerye Philippe


    Full Text Available Abstract Background There is need for a cognitive test battery that can be easily used in clinical practice to detect or monitor cognitive performance in patients with multiple sclerosis (MS. In order to conduct, in this patient group, a preliminary investigation of the validity and utility of a brief computerized battery, the Cognitive Drug Research (CDR battery, we longitudinally assessed cognition in patients with relapsing remitting (RR MS. Methods Forty-three mildly disabled, clinically active RRMS patients were repeatedly assessed with the Digit Symbol Substitution Test (DSST, Paced Auditory Serial Addition Test (PASAT and five composite scores derived from the CDR computerized cognitive test system (CDR System: Power of Attention, Continuity of Attention, Quality of Working Memory, Quality of Episodic Memory and Speed of Memory. The Multiple Sclerosis Functional Composite (MSFC and Expanded Disability Status Scale (EDSS measured disability. Results The composite scores from the CDR battery generally showed excellent test-retest reliability over the repeated assessments, though was low on occasions for the Quality of Working Memory and Quality of Episodic Memory measures. The CDR measures tended to be highly correlated with other measures of cognition (DSST and PASAT and were also strongly related to disability (EDSS and MSFC. Baseline scores indicated large impairments to visual information processing speed and attention (DSST, Cohen's d 1.1; Power of Attention d 1.4 [reaction time on tasks of focussed and sustained attention], and a moderate impairment both to sustained attention (Continuity of Attention d 0.6 and complex information processing speed (Speed of memory d 0.7 [reaction time on tasks of working and episodic Memory], when compared to normative data derived from healthy volunteers enrolled in a series of separate, prior clinical trials. Working memory (Quality of Working Memory and episodic memory (Quality of Episodic Memory

  10. Performance analysis of adaptive modulation for cognitive radios with opportunistic access

    KAUST Repository

    Chen, Yunfei


    The performance of adaptive modulation for cognitive radio with opportunistic access is analyzed by considering the effects of spectrum sensing and primary user traffic for Nakagami-m fading channels. Both the adaptive continuous rate scheme and the adaptive discrete rate scheme are considered. Numerical results show that spectrum sensing and primary user traffic cause considerable degradation to the bit error rate performance of adaptive modulation in a cognitive radio system with opportunistic access to the licensed channel. They also show that primary user traffic does not affect the link spectral efficiency performance of adaptive modulation, while the spectrum sensing degrades the link spectral efficiency performance. © 2011 IEEE.

  11. Monitoring and predicting cognitive state and performance via physiological correlates of neuronal signals. (United States)

    Russo, Michael B; Stetz, Melba C; Thomas, Maria L


    Judgment, decision making, and situational awareness are higher-order mental abilities critically important to operational cognitive performance. Higher-order mental abilities rely on intact functioning of multiple brain regions, including the prefrontal, thalamus, and parietal areas. Real-time monitoring of individuals for cognitive performance capacity via an approach based on sampling multiple neurophysiologic signals and integrating those signals with performance prediction models potentially provides a method of supporting warfighters' and commanders' decision making and other operationally relevant mental processes and is consistent with the goals of augmented cognition. Cognitive neurophysiological assessments that directly measure brain function and subsequent cognition include positron emission tomography, functional magnetic resonance imaging, mass spectroscopy, near-infrared spectroscopy, magnetoencephalography, and electroencephalography (EEG); however, most direct measures are not practical to use in operational environments. More practical, albeit indirect measures that are generated by, but removed from the actual neural sources, are movement activity, oculometrics, heart rate, and voice stress signals. The goal of the papers in this section is to describe advances in selected direct and indirect cognitive neurophysiologic monitoring techniques as applied for the ultimate purpose of preventing operational performance failures. These papers present data acquired in a wide variety of environments, including laboratory, simulator, and clinical arenas. The papers discuss cognitive neurophysiologic measures such as digital signal processing wrist-mounted actigraphy; oculometrics including blinks, saccadic eye movements, pupillary movements, the pupil light reflex; and high-frequency EEG. These neurophysiological indices are related to cognitive performance as measured through standard test batteries and simulators with conditions including sleep loss


    Espeland, Mark A.; Katula, Jeffrey A.; Rushing, Julia; Kramer, Arthur F.; Jennings, Janine M.; Sink, Kaycee M.; Nadkarni, Neelesh K.; Reid, Kieran F.; Castro, Cynthia M.; Church, Timothy; Kerwin, Diana R.; Williamson, Jeff D.; Marottoli, Richard A.; Rushing, Scott; Marsiske, Michael; Rapp, Stephen R.


    Background Computer-administered assessment of cognitive function is being increasingly incorporated in clinical trials, however its performance in these settings has not been systematically evaluated. Design The Seniors Health and Activity Research Program (SHARP) pilot trial (N=73) developed a computer-based tool for assessing memory performance and executive functioning. The Lifestyle Interventions and Independence for Seniors (LIFE) investigators incorporated this battery in a full scale multicenter clinical trial (N=1635). We describe relationships that test scores have with those from interviewer-administered cognitive function tests and risk factors for cognitive deficits and describe performance measures (completeness, intra-class correlations). Results Computer-based assessments of cognitive function had consistent relationships across the pilot and full scale trial cohorts with interviewer-administered assessments of cognitive function, age, and a measure of physical function. In the LIFE cohort, their external validity was further demonstrated by associations with other risk factors for cognitive dysfunction: education, hypertension, diabetes, and physical function. Acceptable levels of data completeness (>83%) were achieved on all computer-based measures, however rates of missing data were higher among older participants (odds ratio=1.06 for each additional year; p<0.001) and those who reported no current computer use (odds ratio=2.71; p<0.001). Intra-class correlations among clinics were at least as low (ICC≤0.013) as for interviewer measures (ICC≤0.023), reflecting good standardization. All cognitive measures loaded onto the first principal component (global cognitive function), which accounted for 40% of the overall variance. Conclusion Our results support the use of computer-based tools for assessing cognitive function in multicenter clinical trials of older individuals. PMID:23589390

  13. Deep Space Spaceflight Hazards Effects on Cognition, Behavioral Health, and Behavioral Biomarkers in Humans (United States)

    Williams, T. J.; Norsk, P.; Zwart, S.; Crucian, B.; Simonsen, L. C.; Antonsen, E.


    Deep Space Gateway missions provide testing grounds to identify the risk of both behavioral performance and cognitive perturbations caused by stressors of spaceflight such as radiation, fluid shifts, sleep deprivation, chronic stress, and others.

  14. Incremental rate of prefrontal oxygenation determines performance speed during cognitive Stroop test: the effect of ageing. (United States)

    Endo, Kana; Liang, Nan; Idesako, Mitsuhiro; Ishii, Kei; Matsukawa, Kanji


    Cognitive function declines with age. The underlying mechanisms responsible for the deterioration of cognitive performance, however, remain poorly understood. We hypothesized that an incremental rate of prefrontal oxygenation during a cognitive Stroop test decreases in progress of ageing, resulting in a slowdown of cognitive performance. To test this hypothesis, we identified, using multichannel near-infrared spectroscopy, the characteristics of the oxygenated-hemoglobin concentration (Oxy-Hb) responses of the prefrontal cortex to both incongruent Stroop and congruent word-reading test. Spatial distributions of the significant changes in the three components (initial slope, peak amplitude, and area under the curve) of the Oxy-Hb response were compared between young and elderly subjects. The Stroop interference time (as a difference in total periods for executing Stroop and word-reading test, respectively) approximately doubled in elderly as compared to young subjects. The Oxy-Hb in the rostrolateral, but not caudal, prefrontal cortex increased during the Stroop test in both age groups. The initial slope of the Oxy-Hb response, rather than the peak and area under the curve, had a strong correlation with cognitive performance speed. Taken together, it is likely that the incremental rate of prefrontal oxygenation may decrease in progress of ageing, resulting in a decline in cognitive performance.

  15. Genetic associations between fibrinogen and cognitive performance in three Scottish cohorts. (United States)

    Marioni, Riccardo E; Deary, Ian J; Murray, Gordon D; Lowe, Gordon D O; Strachan, Mark W J; Luciano, Michelle; Houlihan, Lorna M; Gow, Alan J; Harris, Sarah E; Rumley, Ann; Stewart, Marlene C; Fowkes, F Gerry R; Price, Jackie F


    There is increasing evidence to suggest that elevated plasma levels of fibrinogen are associated with late-life cognitive performance. This study tested the association of single nucleotide polymorphisms in the fibrinogen α (FGA) and β (FGB) genes with cognitive performance. Data were analysed from three community-dwelling populations of older persons (>50 years) in central Scotland: the Aspirin for Asymptomatic Atherosclerosis (AAA) Trial (n = 2,091), the Edinburgh Type 2 Diabetes Study (ET2DS, n = 1,066), and the Lothian Birth Cohort 1936 (LBC1936, n = 1,091). Cognition was assessed using a battery of five, seven, and four psychometric tests, respectively. This information was used to derive a general cognitive factor. Weakly significant associations were found between the rs4220 (FGB), and rs2227412 (FGB) SNPs and a single test of cognitive performance in the AAA Trial (p determinant of late-life cognitive performance and justify further attempts at replication in older persons.

  16. Does consumption of LC omega-3 PUFA enhance cognitive performance in healthy school-aged children and throughout adulthood? Evidence from clinical trials. (United States)

    Stonehouse, Welma


    Long-chain (LC) omega-3 PUFA derived from marine sources may play an important role in cognitive performance throughout all life stages. Docosahexaenoic acid (DHA), the dominant omega-3 in the brain, is a major component of neuronal cell membranes and affects various neurological pathways and processess. Despite its critical role in brain function, human's capacity to synthesize DHA de novo is limited and its consumption through the diet is important. However, many individuals do not or rarely consume seafood. The aim of this review is to critically evaluate the current evidence from randomised controlled trials (RCT) in healthy school-aged children, younger and older adults to determine whether consumption of LC omega-3 PUFA improves cognitive performance and to make recommendations for future research. Current evidence suggests that consumption of LC omega-3 PUFA, particularly DHA, may enhance cognitive performance relating to learning, cognitive development, memory and speed of performing cognitive tasks. Those who habitually consume diets low in DHA, children with low literacy ability and malnourished and older adults with age-related cognitive decline and mild cognitive impairment seem to benefit most. However, study design limitations in many RCTs hamper firm conclusions. The measurement of a uniform biomarker, e.g., % DHA in red blood cells, is essential to establish baseline DHA-status, to determine targets for cognitive performance and to facilitate dosage recommendations. It is recommended that future studies be at least 16 weeks in duration, account for potential interaction effects of gender, age and apolipoprotein E genotype, include vegan/vegetarian populations, include measures of speed of cognitive performance and include brain imaging technologies as supportive information on working mechanisms of LC omega-3 PUFA.

  17. [Relationship between subclinical psychotic symptoms and cognitive performance in the general population]. (United States)

    Martín-Santiago, Oscar; Suazo, Vanessa; Rodríguez-Lorenzana, Alberto; Ruiz de Azúa, Sonia; Valcárcel, César; Díez, Álvaro; Grau, Adriana; Domínguez, Cristina; Gallardo, Ricardo; Molina, Vicente


    Subclinical psychotic symptoms are associated to negative life outcomes in the general population, but their relationship with cognitive performance is still not well understood. Assessing the relationship between performance in cognitive domains and subclinical psychotic symptoms in the general population may also help understand the handicap attributed to clinical psychosis, in which these alterations are present. Subclinical and cognitive assessments were obtained in 203 participants from the general population by means of the Community Assessment of Psychic Experiences, the Brief Assessment of Cognition in Schizophrenia, the Wechsler Adults Intelligence Scale and the Wisconsin Card Sorting Test. The positive and negative subclinical symptoms and their relationship with age and cognition were examined, followed by assessing the influence of subclinical depression scores on the possible relationships between those subclinical psychotic symptoms and cognitive deficits. Inverse relationships were found between frequency in the Community Assessment of Psychic Experiences positive dimension and motor speed, and frequency and distress in the Community Assessment of Psychic Experiences negative dimension and motor speed. A direct relationship was also found between distress scores of the positive dimension and executive functions. Both positive and negative subclinical symptoms were related to depression scores. Psychotic symptoms, similar to those in the clinical population, may be associated with cognitive deficits in the general population. Copyright © 2015 SEP y SEPB. Published by Elsevier España. All rights reserved.

  18. Intensity of Multilingual Language Use Predicts Cognitive Performance in Some Multilingual Older Adults (United States)

    Keijzer, Merel; de Bot, Kees


    Cognitive advantages for bilinguals have inconsistently been observed in different populations, with different operationalisations of bilingualism, cognitive performance, and the process by which language control transfers to cognitive control. This calls for studies investigating which aspects of multilingualism drive a cognitive advantage, in which populations and under which conditions. This study reports on two cognitive tasks coupled with an extensive background questionnaire on health, wellbeing, personality, language knowledge and language use, administered to 387 older adults in the northern Netherlands, a small but highly multilingual area. Using linear mixed effects regression modeling, we find that when different languages are used frequently in different contexts, enhanced attentional control is observed. Subsequently, a PLS regression model targeting also other influential factors yielded a two-component solution whereby only more sensitive measures of language proficiency and language usage in different social contexts were predictive of cognitive performance above and beyond the contribution of age, gender, income and education. We discuss these findings in light of previous studies that try to uncover more about the nature of bilingualism and the cognitive processes that may drive an advantage. With an unusually large sample size our study advocates for a move away from dichotomous, knowledge-based operationalisations of multilingualism and offers new insights for future studies at the individual level. PMID:29783764

  19. Applying Neuroscience to Enhance Tactical Leader Cognitive Performance in Combat (United States)


    highlights works inspired by neuroscience discoveries in the last twenty years. Neuroscience Literature and Research In his 1994 book, Descartes ’ Error... facts.html (accessed 9 October 2011). Damasio, Antonio. 1994. Descartes ’ error: Emotion, reason, and the human

  20. Une approche pragmatique cognitive de l'interaction personne/système informatisé A Cognitive Pragmatic Approach of Human/Computer Interaction

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Madeleine Saint-Pierre


    Full Text Available Dans cet article, nous proposons une approche inférentielle de l'interaction humain/ordinateur. C'est par la prise en compte de l'activité cognitive de l'utilisateur pendant son travail avec un système que nous voulons comprendre ce type d'interaction. Ceci mènera à une véritable évaluation des interfaces/utilisateurs et pourra servir de guide pour des interfaces en développement. Nos analyses décrivent le processus inférentiel impliqué dans le contexte dynamique d'exécution de tâche, grâce à une catégorisation de l'activité cognitive issue des verbalisations recueillies auprès d'utilisateurs qui " pensent à haute voix " en travaillant. Nous présentons des instruments méthodologiques mis au point dans notre recherche pour l'analyses et la catégorisation des protocoles. Les résultats sont interprétés dans le cadre de la théorie de la pertinence de Sperber et Wilson (1995 en termes d'effort cognitif dans le traitement des objets (linguistique, iconique, graphique... apparaissant à l'écran et d'effet cognitif de ces derniers. Cette approche est généralisable à tout autre contexte d'interaction humain/ordinateur comme, par exemple, le télé-apprentissage.This article proposes an inferential approach for the study of human/computer interaction. It is by taking into account the user's cognitive activity while working at a computer that we propose to understand this interaction. This approach leads to a real user/interface evaluation and, hopefully, will serve as guidelines for the design of new interfaces. Our analysis describe the inferential process involved in the dynamics of task performance. The cognitive activity of the user is grasped by the mean of a " thinking aloud " method through which the user is asked to verbalize while working at the computer. Tools developped by our research team for the categorization of the verbal protocols are presented. The results are interpreted within the relevance theory

  1. Effects of Reducing the Cognitive Load of Mathematics Test Items on Student Performance

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Susan C. Gillmor


    Full Text Available This study explores a new item-writing framework for improving the validity of math assessment items. The authors transfer insights from Cognitive Load Theory (CLT, traditionally used in instructional design, to educational measurement. Fifteen, multiple-choice math assessment items were modified using research-based strategies for reducing extraneous cognitive load. An experimental design with 222 middle-school students tested the effects of the reduced cognitive load items on student performance and anxiety. Significant findings confirm the main research hypothesis that reducing the cognitive load of math assessment items improves student performance. Three load-reducing item modifications are identified as particularly effective for reducing item difficulty: signalling important information, aesthetic item organization, and removing extraneous content. Load reduction was not shown to impact student anxiety. Implications for classroom assessment and future research are discussed.

  2. The combination of L-theanine and caffeine improves cognitive performance and increases subjective alertness. (United States)

    Giesbrecht, T; Rycroft, J A; Rowson, M J; De Bruin, E A


    The non-proteinic amino acid L-theanine and caffeine, a methylxanthine derivative, are naturally occurring ingredients in tea. The present study investigated the effect of a combination of 97 mg L-theanine and 40 mg caffeine as compared to placebo treatment on cognitive performance, alertness, blood pressure, and heart rate in a sample of young adults (n = 44). Cognitive performance, self-reported mood, blood pressure, and heart rate were measured before L-theanine and caffeine administration (i.e. at baseline) and 20 min and 70 min thereafter. The combination of moderate levels of L-theanine and caffeine significantly improved accuracy during task switching and self-reported alertness (both P effects on other cognitive tasks, such as visual search, choice reaction times, or mental rotation. The present results suggest that 97 mg of L-theanine in combination with 40 mg of caffeine helps to focus attention during a demanding cognitive task.

  3. The "Rod and Fran Test": relationship priming influences cognitive-perceptual performance. (United States)

    Baldwin, Mark W; Bagust, Jeff; Docherty, Sharon; Browman, Alexander S; Jackson, Joshua C


    We theorized that interpersonal relationships can provide structures for experience. In particular, we tested whether primes of same-sex versus mixed-sex relationships could foster cognitive-perceptual processing styles known to be associated with independence versus interdependence respectively. Seventy-two participants visualized either a same-sex or other-sex relationship partner and then performed two measures of cognitive-perceptual style. On a computerized Rod and Frame Test, individuals were more field-dependent after visualizing a mixed-sex versus same-sex relationship partner. On a measure involving perceptions of group behavior, participants demonstrated more holistic/contextually based perception after being primed with a female versus male relationship partner. These findings support the hypothesis that activated cognitive structures representing interpersonal relationships can shape individuals' cognitive-perceptual performance.

  4. The Five Key Questions of Human Performance Modeling. (United States)

    Wu, Changxu


    Via building computational (typically mathematical and computer simulation) models, human performance modeling (HPM) quantifies, predicts, and maximizes human performance, human-machine system productivity and safety. This paper describes and summarizes the five key questions of human performance modeling: 1) Why we build models of human performance; 2) What the expectations of a good human performance model are; 3) What the procedures and requirements in building and verifying a human performance model are; 4) How we integrate a human performance model with system design; and 5) What the possible future directions of human performance modeling research are. Recent and classic HPM findings are addressed in the five questions to provide new thinking in HPM's motivations, expectations, procedures, system integration and future directions.

  5. Study on Performance Shaping Factors (PSFs) Quantification Method in Human Reliability Analysis (HRA)

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Kim, Ar Ryum; Jang, Inseok Jang; Seong, Poong Hyun; Park, Jinkyun; Kim, Jong Hyun


    The purpose of HRA implementation is 1) to achieve the human factor engineering (HFE) design goal of providing operator interfaces that will minimize personnel errors and 2) to conduct an integrated activity to support probabilistic risk assessment (PRA). For these purposes, various HRA methods have been developed such as technique for human error rate prediction (THERP), simplified plant analysis risk human reliability assessment (SPAR-H), cognitive reliability and error analysis method (CREAM) and so on. In performing HRA, such conditions that influence human performances have been represented via several context factors called performance shaping factors (PSFs). PSFs are aspects of the human's individual characteristics, environment, organization, or task that specifically decrements or improves human performance, thus respectively increasing or decreasing the likelihood of human errors. Most HRA methods evaluate the weightings of PSFs by expert judgment and explicit guidance for evaluating the weighting is not provided. It has been widely known that the performance of the human operator is one of the critical factors to determine the safe operation of NPPs. HRA methods have been developed to identify the possibility and mechanism of human errors. In performing HRA methods, the effect of PSFs which may increase or decrease human error should be investigated. However, the effect of PSFs were estimated by expert judgment so far. Accordingly, in order to estimate the effect of PSFs objectively, the quantitative framework to estimate PSFs by using PSF profiles is introduced in this paper

  6. Cognitive Linguistic Performances of Multilingual University Students Suspected of Dyslexia (United States)

    Lindgren, Signe-Anita; Laine, Matti


    High-performing adults with compensated dyslexia pose particular challenges to dyslexia diagnostics. We compared the performance of 20 multilingual Finnish university students with suspected dyslexia with 20 age-matched and education-matched controls on an extensive test battery. The battery tapped various aspects of reading, writing, word…

  7. Effects of Cognitive Interventions on Sports Anxiety and Performance. (United States)

    Murphy, Shane M.; Woolfolk, Robert L.

    Oxendine (1970) hypothesized that the arousal-performance relationship varies across tasks, such that gross motor activities will require high arousal for optimal performance while fine motor activities will be facilitated by low arousal, but adversely affected by high arousal. Although the effects of preparatory arousal on strength performance…

  8. Effectively managing nuclear risk through human performance improvement

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Coe, R.P.


    is to apply the principles of Human Performance Technology, or HPT, to the nuclear workplace. HPT is a relatively new field that has been emerging over the several decades. Its principles are derived from the research and practice of behavioral and cognitive psychologist, instructional technologists training designers, organizational developers and various human resource specialists. Relying heavily on general systems theory as applied to organizations, HPT takes a systemic approach to risk assessment and performance analysis/ change as opposed to making piecemeal interventions which often happens in designing training programs intended to be the only fix specific organizational behavior problems in the short term. Specifically, HPT methodology emphasizes examining any given problem in relation to the more global aims of the setting or environment within which the problem is identified. Its consistent driver is measurable performance and the structuring of elements within the system to improve and reward desirable performance and effective risk management. In general, HPT is more than another way to look at training, HPT is a systemized process that combines selection, analysis, design, development, implementation, and evaluation of programs to most cost effectively influence human behavior and accomplishment. By taking a systems view of organizations rather than discreetly focusing on pockets of concern within an organization, it seeks to link the actions and interventions of all the organizational elements that affect overall performance. It does this through identifying, among other things, current performance levels, required performance levels for effective risk management, exemplary performance, and developing measurements for each step in the process. It examines such things as the external and organizational environments as well as the influences that directly impact individual performance. Direct application to the nuclear industry is evident when

  9. Some human performance paradoxes of nuclear operations

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Otway, H.J.; Misenta, R.


    Roughly once a year, an abnormal situation with emergency potential may suddenly break the calm monotony of nuclear-power plant operation. The operating crew, perhaps under-stimulated by monitoring largely automatic processes, may then be expected to make correct inferences and decisions about complex phenomena. However, under stress, the operators may resort to using their 'best-learned responses', inappropriate to the real situation. Recent events at Three Mile Island prompted a variety of suggestions intended to improve operator performance, eg higher qualifications, more pay, or enhanced status. The authors stress the paradoxes of nuclear operation, conclude that some 'intuitively obvious' suggestions might have the opposite effect to that intended, and explore the possibility of introducing frequent, realistic emergency drills. Even this approach raises paradoxes - perhaps the role of the operator should be eliminated, or redefined to allow less human intervention in emergencies. (author)

  10. A trending database for human performance events

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Harrison, D.


    An effective Operations Experience program includes a standardized methodology for the investigation of unplanned events and a tool capable of retaining investigation data for the purpose of trending analysis. A database used in conjunction with a formalized investigation procedure for the purpose of trending unplanning event data is described. The database follows the structure of INPO's Human Performance Enhancement System for investigations. The database screens duplicate on-line the HPES evaluation Forms. All information pertaining to investigations is collected, retained and entered into the database using these forms. The database will be used for trending analysis to determine if any significant patterns exist, for tracking progress over time both within AECL and against industry standards, and for evaluating the success of corrective actions. Trending information will be used to help prevent similar occurrences

  11. Improved human performance through appropriate work scheduling

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Morisseau, D.S.; Lewis, P.M.; Persensky, J.J.


    The Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) has had a policy, Generic Letter 82-12, on hours of work since 1982. The policy states that licensees should establish controls to prevent situations where fatigue could reduce the ability of operating personnel to perform their duties safely (USNRC 1982). While that policy does give guidance on hours of work and overtime, it does not address periods of longer than 7 days or work schedules other than the routine 8-hour day, 40-hour week. Recognizing that NRC policy could provide broader guidance for shift schedules and hours of overtime work, the Division of Human Factors Safety conducted a project with Pacific Northwest Laboratories (PNL) to help the NRC better understand the human factors principles and issues concerning hours of work so that the NRC could consider updating their policy as necessary. The results of this project are recommendations for guidelines and limits for periods of 14 days, 28 days, and 1 year to take into account the cumulative effects of fatigue. In addition, routine 12-hour shifts are addressed. This latter type of shift schedule has been widely adopted in the petroleum and chemical industries and several utilities operating nuclear power plants have adopted it as well. Since this is the case, it is important to consider including guidelines for implementing this type of schedule. This paper discusses the bases for the PNL recommendations which are currently being studied by the NRC

  12. Human figure drawing distinguishes Alzheimer's patients: a cognitive screening test study. (United States)

    Stanzani Maserati, Michelangelo; D'Onofrio, Renato; Matacena, Corrado; Sambati, Luisa; Oppi, Federico; Poda, Roberto; De Matteis, Maddalena; Naldi, Ilaria; Liguori, Rocco; Capellari, Sabina


    To study human figure drawing in a group of Alzheimer's disease (AD) patients and compare it with a group of patients with mild cognitive impairment (MCI) and controls. We evaluated consecutive outpatients over a one-year period. Patients were classified as affected by AD or by MCI. All patients and controls underwent a simplified version of the human-figure drawing test and MMSE. A qualitative and quantitative analysis of all human figures was obtained. 112 AD, 100 MCI patients and 104 controls were enrolled. AD patients drew human figures poor in details and globally smaller than MCI patients and controls. Human figures drawn by MCI patients are intermediate in body height between those of the AD patients and the healthy subjects. The head-to-body ratio of human figures drawn by AD patients is greater than controls and MCI patients, while the human figure size-relative-to-page space index is significantly smaller. Body height is an independent predictor of cognitive impairment correlating with its severity and with the number of the figure's details. Human figures drawn by AD patients are different from those drawn by healthy subjects and MCI patients. Human figure drawing test is a useful tool for orienting cognitive impairment's diagnosis.

  13. Geo-spatial Cognition on Human's Social Activity Space Based on Multi-scale Grids

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    ZHAI Weixin


    Full Text Available Widely applied location aware devices, including mobile phones and GPS receivers, have provided great convenience for collecting large volume individuals' geographical information. The researches on the human's society behavior space has attracts an increasingly number of researchers. In our research, based on location-based Flickr data From 2004 to May, 2014 in China, we choose five levels of spatial grids to form the multi-scale frame for investigate the correlation between the scale and the geo-spatial cognition on human's social activity space. The HT-index is selected as the fractal inspired by Alexander to estimate the maturity of the society activity on different scales. The results indicate that that the scale characteristics are related to the spatial cognition to a certain extent. It is favorable to use the spatial grid as a tool to control scales for geo-spatial cognition on human's social activity space.


    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Lígia Márcia Martins


    Full Text Available This article puts in question the affectional-cognitive unit which sustains the human activity, with the purpose to light incorrectness of approaches which dichotomize reason and emotion. It asserts that such dissociations are founded in theorical-methodological principles which set bounds for explanations about the human psychism, so that the overcoming of referred dualisms puts on as a method matter. For making explicit that assertion, it resorted to Historic-Cultural Psychology, based on that it explains about the psychism as subjective image of objective reality, of Vygotskyan criticisms to Cartesian dualism and the need of a historic-cultural approach on emotion studies, intend to analyzing the human activity as a affective-cognitive unit and the imbricated relations that are waged, within it, among affections, emotions, feelings and thoughts. Once presented the interrelations between emotions and cognitions this exhibition argues that the concepts are necessary as a minimum unit of analysis both of thought and feelings.

  15. Association between academic performance and cognitive dysfunction in patients with juvenile systemic lupus erythematosus

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Renan Bazuco Frittoli


    Full Text Available Abstract Objective To determine whether there is an association between the profile of cognitive dysfunction and academic outcomes in patients with juvenile systemic lupus erythematosus (JSLE. Methods Patients aged ≤18 years at the onset of the disease and education level at or above the fifth grade of elementary school were selected. Cognitive evaluation was performed according to the American College of Rheumatology (ACR recommendations. Symptoms of anxiety and depression were assessed by Beck scales; disease activity was assessed by Systemic Lupus Erythematosus Disease Activity Index (SLEDAI; and cumulative damage was assessed by Systemic Lupus International Collaborating Clinics (SLICC. The presence of autoantibodies and medication use were also assessed. A significance level of 5% (p < 0.05 was adopted. Results 41 patients with a mean age of 14.5 ± 2.84 years were included. Cognitive dysfunction was noted in 17 (41.46% patients. There was a significant worsening in mathematical performance in patients with cognitive dysfunction (p = 0.039. Anxiety symptoms were observed in 8 patients (19.51% and were associated with visual perception (p = 0.037 and symptoms of depression were observed in 1 patient (2.43%. Conclusion Patients with JSLE concomitantly with cognitive dysfunction showed worse academic performance in mathematics compared to patients without cognitive impairment.

  16. Sleep and cognitive performance: the role of income and respiratory sinus arrhythmia reactivity. (United States)

    Staton, Lori; Hinnant, J Benjamin; Buckhalt, Joseph; El-Sheikh, Mona


    A health disparities view suggests that low family income status acts as a risk factor for poor cognitive functioning. A biosystems view suggests that poor sleep and poor stress response system functioning are also risk factors. These views are rarely integrated to test multiplicative risk or protective effects from social-cultural and biological variables. We investigated interactions among familial income, children's sleep and respiratory sinus arrhythmia reactivity (RSA reactivity, indexing parasympathetic nervous system reactivity) in the prediction of cognitive performance of school-aged children. Participants were 282 children (146 boys; 35% African American and 65% European American; M age = 9.42 years, SD = .71). Mothers reported on family income. Children's sleep quality (efficiency) and duration (minutes) were assessed via a week of actigraphy. Children's RSA reactivity to an attention demanding and frustrating star tracing challenge was assessed in the lab. Children completed standardized cognitive assessments examining attention, processing speed, and crystallized cognitive functioning. Findings show that more optimal sleep efficiency and RSA reactivity interact to confer protection against poor cognitive performance, particularly for children from lower income homes. Results build on the literature and suggest that interactions between biological systems and socioeconomic variables are key for understanding children's cognitive performance. © 2014 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  17. Embodied niche construction in the hominin lineage: semiotic structure and sustained attention in human embodied cognition (United States)

    Stutz, Aaron J.


    Human evolution unfolded through a rather distinctive, dynamically constructed ecological niche. The human niche is not only generally terrestrial in habitat, while being flexibly and extensively heterotrophic in food-web connections. It is also defined by semiotically structured and structuring embodied cognitive interfaces, connecting the individual organism with the wider environment. The embodied dimensions of niche-population co-evolution have long involved semiotic system construction, which I hypothesize to be an evolutionarily primitive aspect of learning and higher-level cognitive integration and attention in the great apes and humans alike. A clearly pre-linguistic form of semiotic cognitive structuration is suggested to involve recursively learned and constructed object icons. Higher-level cognitive iconic representation of visually, auditorily, or haptically perceived extrasomatic objects would be learned and evoked through indexical connections to proprioceptive and affective somatic states. Thus, private cognitive signs would be defined, not only by their learned and perceived extrasomatic referents, but also by their associations to iconically represented somatic states. This evolutionary modification of animal associative learning is suggested to be adaptive in ecological niches occupied by long-lived, large-bodied ape species, facilitating memory construction and recall in highly varied foraging and social contexts, while sustaining selective attention during goal-directed behavioral sequences. The embodied niche construction (ENC) hypothesis of human evolution posits that in the early hominin lineage, natural selection further modified the ancestral ape semiotic adaptations, favoring the recursive structuration of concise iconic narratives of embodied interaction with the environment. PMID:25136323

  18. Consistency of the Relations of Cognitive Ability and Personality Traits to Pilot Training Performance (United States)


    efficient and effective as pos- sible . This article examines the predictive validity of cognitive ability and personality measures for U.S. Air Force...human personality. The domains are Neuroticism (sometimes called emotional stability), Extraversion, Openness, Agreeableness , and Conscientiousness. 250... Agreeableness , and Conscientiousness. In one of the earliest reported studies of the use of personality tests for flying personnel, Sells (1955) showed

  19. Poorer cognitive performance in perinatally HIV-infected children versus healthy socioeconomically matched controls

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Cohen, Sophie; ter Stege, Jacqueline A.; Geurtsen, Gert J.; Scherpbier, Henriette J.; Kuijpers, Taco W.; Reiss, Peter; Schmand, Ben; Pajkrt, Dasja


    Despite the declining incidence of severe neurological complications such as HIV encephalopathy, human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) infection in children is still associated with a range of cognitive problems. Although most HIV-infected children in industrialized countries are immigrants with a

  20. Accountability and need for cognition effects on contrast, halo, and accuracy in performance ratings. (United States)

    Palmer, Jerry K; Feldman, Jack M


    In the present study, the authors investigated the effects of accountability and need for cognition on contrast errors, halo, and accuracy of performance ratings examined in good and poor performance context conditions, as well as in a context-free control condition. The accountability manipulation reduced the contrast effect and also modified rater recall of good ratee behavior. Accountability reduced halo in ratings and increased rating accuracy in a poor performance context. Accountability also interacted with need for cognition in predicting individual rater halo.