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Sample records for mediating task performance

  1. Effect of intrinsic rewards on task performance of employees: Mediating role of motivation

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Rizwan Qaiser Danish

    2015-02-01

    Full Text Available The basic purpose of this study was to examine the effect of reward management system, especially intrinsic rewards on task performance with the mediating role of extrinsic and intrinsic motivation of employees working in the banks in the capital of Punjab, Lahore, Pakistan. The secondary purpose of this study was to explore what level of performance these employees demonstrate towards their organizations when they are rewarded intrinsically and when they are motivated due to these reward management system accordingly. In this study, we collected data through self-administered questionnaires applying correlational explanatory research design. We distributed 300 questionnaires among which 290 were returned resulting in a response rate of 96%. The analysis of the data revealed that intrinsic rewards have positive impact on task performance of employees working in banks and motivation and its dimensions, i.e., intrinsic motivation, extrinsic motivation, and job satisfaction mediated this relationship. Considering the importance of appreciations received by bankers in the form of rewards and their effect on extra role performance and sophisticated management, policy makers should take necessary steps for improving the reward management system which will increase the task performance of employees because they will be motivated by these performance appraisal techniques.

  2. The effect analysis of mediation variable of task productivity on the self-efficacy and employees’ performance

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Annissa Chairum Soebandono

    2016-11-01

    Full Text Available This research was conducted for analyzing the effect of mediating variable that is individual task proactivity as one of the proactivities of behavior towards the relationship between self-efficacy and the employees’ performance in the logistics companies of shipping the goods. It uses convenience sampling, which is a non-probability sampling method for getting the sample of 52 employees. They were divided into two divisions, namely infrastructure and quality assurance. The questionnaire consists of two parts, in which some were assessed by themselves and others that were assessed by the supervisor. They were analyzed using path analysis using analytical tools developed by Hayes, Preacher-Hayes with the simple mediation models. It was found that employees have self-efficacy, individual task proactivity, and relatively high performance, in which individual task proactivity can be a mediating variable on the effect self-efficacy on performance.

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

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

    2014-04-01

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

  4. Teaching Task Sequencing via Verbal Mediation.

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    Rusch, Frank R.; And Others

    1987-01-01

    Verbal sequence training was used to teach a moderately mentally retarded woman to sequence job-related tasks. Learning to say the tasks in the proper sequence resulted in the employee performing her tasks in that sequence, and the employee was capable of mediating her own work behavior when scheduled changes occurred. (Author/JDD)

  5. Computer-mediated communication: task performance and satisfaction.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Simon, Andrew F

    2006-06-01

    The author assessed satisfaction and performance on 3 tasks (idea generation, intellective, judgment) among 75 dyads (N = 150) working through 1 of 3 modes of communication (instant messaging, videoconferencing, face to face). The author based predictions on the Media Naturalness Theory (N. Kock, 2001, 2002) and on findings from past researchers (e.g., D. M. DeRosa, C. Smith, & D. A. Hantula, in press) of the interaction between tasks and media. The present author did not identify task performance differences, although satisfaction with the medium was lower among those dyads communicating through an instant-messaging system than among those interacting face to face or through videoconferencing. The findings support the Media Naturalness Theory. The author discussed them in relation to the participants' frequent use of instant messaging and their familiarity with new communication media.

  6. Monitoring supports performance in a dual-task paradigm involving a risky decision-making task and a working memory task

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Bettina eGathmann

    2015-02-01

    Full Text Available Performing two cognitively demanding tasks at the same time is known to decrease performance. The current study investigates the underlying executive functions of a dual-tasking situation involving the simultaneous performance of decision making under explicit risk and a working memory task. It is suggested that making a decision and performing a working memory task at the same time should particularly require monitoring - an executive control process supervising behavior and the state of processing on two tasks. To test the role of a supervisory/monitoring function in such a dual-tasking situation we investigated 122 participants with the Game of Dice Task plus 2-back task (GDT plus 2-back task. This dual task requires participants to make decisions under risk and to perform a 2-back working memory task at the same time. Furthermore, a task measuring a set of several executive functions gathered in the term concept formation (Modified Card Sorting Test, MCST and the newly developed Balanced Switching Task (BST, measuring monitoring in particular, were used. The results demonstrate that concept formation and monitoring are involved in the simultaneous performance of decision making under risk and a working memory task. In particular, the mediation analysis revealed that BST performance partially mediates the influence of MCST performance on the GDT plus 2-back task. These findings suggest that monitoring is one important subfunction for superior performance in a dual-tasking situation including decision making under risk and a working memory task.

  7. Monitoring supports performance in a dual-task paradigm involving a risky decision-making task and a working memory task

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    Gathmann, Bettina; Schiebener, Johannes; Wolf, Oliver T.; Brand, Matthias

    2015-01-01

    Performing two cognitively demanding tasks at the same time is known to decrease performance. The current study investigates the underlying executive functions of a dual-tasking situation involving the simultaneous performance of decision making under explicit risk and a working memory task. It is suggested that making a decision and performing a working memory task at the same time should particularly require monitoring—an executive control process supervising behavior and the state of processing on two tasks. To test the role of a supervisory/monitoring function in such a dual-tasking situation we investigated 122 participants with the Game of Dice Task plus 2-back task (GDT plus 2-back task). This dual task requires participants to make decisions under risk and to perform a 2-back working memory task at the same time. Furthermore, a task measuring a set of several executive functions gathered in the term concept formation (Modified Card Sorting Test, MCST) and the newly developed Balanced Switching Task (BST), measuring monitoring in particular, were used. The results demonstrate that concept formation and monitoring are involved in the simultaneous performance of decision making under risk and a working memory task. In particular, the mediation analysis revealed that BST performance partially mediates the influence of MCST performance on the GDT plus 2-back task. These findings suggest that monitoring is one important subfunction for superior performance in a dual-tasking situation including decision making under risk and a working memory task. PMID:25741308

  8. Stereotype threat and lift effects in motor task performance: the mediating role of somatic and cognitive anxiety.

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    Laurin, Raphael

    2013-01-01

    The aim of this investigation was to replicate the stereotype threat and lift effects in a motor task in a neutral sex-typed activity, using somatic and cognitive anxiety as key mediators of these phenomena. It was hypothesized that an ingroup/outgroup social categorization based on gender would have distinctive effects for female and male participants. A total of 161 French physical education students were randomly assigned to three threat conditions--no threat, female threat, and male threat--thus leading to a 3 x 2 (threat by gender) design. The analyses revealed a stereotype lift effect on the performances for both male and female participants, as well as a stereotype threat effect only for female participants. They also indicated that somatic anxiety had a mediating effect on the performance of female participants targeted by a negative stereotype, but that it had a facilitating effect on their performance. The stereotype threat and lift effects on motor tasks were replicated in a neutral sex-typed activity and somatic anxiety seems to have a facilitating mediating effect of the relationships between the gender-conditions (control or female threat) interaction and free-throw performance. The model used to distinguish somatic and cognitive anxiety appeared to be a relevant means of explaining the stereotype threat and lift mechanisms.

  9. Task complexity, student perceptions of vocabulary learning in EFL, and task performance.

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2013-03-01

    The study deepened our understanding of how students' self-efficacy beliefs contribute to the context of teaching English as a foreign language in the framework of cognitive mediational paradigm at a fine-tuned task-specific level. The aim was to examine the relationship among task complexity, self-efficacy beliefs, domain-related prior knowledge, learning strategy use, and task performance as they were applied to English vocabulary learning from reading tasks. Participants were 120 second-year university students (mean age 21) from a Chinese university. This experiment had two conditions (simple/complex). A vocabulary level test was first conducted to measure participants' prior knowledge of English vocabulary. Participants were then randomly assigned to one of the learning tasks. Participants were administered task booklets together with the self-efficacy scales, measures of learning strategy use, and post-tests. Data obtained were submitted to multivariate analysis of variance (MANOVA) and path analysis. Results from the MANOVA model showed a significant effect of vocabulary level on self-efficacy beliefs, learning strategy use, and task performance. Task complexity showed no significant effect; however, an interaction effect between vocabulary level and task complexity emerged. Results from the path analysis showed self-efficacy beliefs had an indirect effect on performance. Our results highlighted the mediating role of self-efficacy beliefs and learning strategy use. Our findings indicate that students' prior knowledge plays a crucial role on both self-efficacy beliefs and task performance, and the predictive power of self-efficacy on task performance may lie in its association with learning strategy use. © 2011 The British Psychological Society.

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

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    Hedayati, Mohsen; Foomani, Elham Mohammadi

    2015-01-01

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

  11. Frontal subregions mediating Elevator Counting task performance.

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    MacPherson, Sarah E; Turner, Martha S; Bozzali, Marco; Cipolotti, Lisa; Shallice, Tim

    2010-10-01

    Deficits in sustained attention may lead to action slips in everyday life as irrelevant action sequences are inappropriately triggered internally or by the environment. While deficits in sustained attention have been associated with damage to the frontal lobes of the brain, little is known about the role of the frontal lobes in the Elevator Counting subtest of the Test of Everyday Attention. In the current study, 55 frontal patients subdivided into medial, orbital and lateral subgroups, 18 patients with posterior lesions and 82 healthy controls performed the Elevator Counting task. The results revealed that patients with medial and left lateral prefrontal lesions were significantly impaired on the task compared to healthy controls. Research suggests that patients with medial lesions are susceptible to competition from task irrelevant schema; whereas the left lateral group in the current study may fail to keep track of the tones already presented. Copyright © 2010 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  12. Visual attention and emotional memory: recall of aversive pictures is partially mediated by concurrent task performance.

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    Pottage, Claire L; Schaefer, Alexandre

    2012-02-01

    The emotional enhancement of memory is often thought to be determined by attention. However, recent evidence using divided attention paradigms suggests that attention does not play a significant role in the formation of memories for aversive pictures. We report a study that investigated this question using a paradigm in which participants had to encode lists of randomly intermixed negative and neutral pictures under conditions of full attention and divided attention followed by a free recall test. Attention was divided by a highly demanding concurrent task tapping visual processing resources. Results showed that the advantage in recall for aversive pictures was still present in the DA condition. However, mediation analyses also revealed that concurrent task performance significantly mediated the emotional enhancement of memory under divided attention. This finding suggests that visual attentional processes play a significant role in the formation of emotional memories. PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2012 APA, all rights reserved

  13. Categorization difficulty modulates the mediated route for response selection in task switching.

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    Schneider, Darryl W

    2017-12-22

    Conflict during response selection in task switching is indicated by the response congruency effect: worse performance for incongruent targets (requiring different responses across tasks) than for congruent targets (requiring the same response). The effect can be explained by dual-task processing in a mediated route for response selection, whereby targets are categorized with respect to both tasks. In the present study, the author tested predictions for the modulation of response congruency effects by categorization difficulty derived from a relative-speed-of-processing hypothesis. Categorization difficulty was manipulated for the relevant and irrelevant task dimensions in a novel spatial task-switching paradigm that involved judging the locations of target dots in a grid, without repetition of dot configurations. Response congruency effects were observed and they varied systematically with categorization difficulty (e.g., being larger when irrelevant categorization was easy than when it was hard). These results are consistent with the relative-speed-of-processing hypothesis and suggest that task-switching models that implement variations of the mediated route for response selection need to address the time course of categorization.

  14. Confidence mediates the sex difference in mental rotation performance.

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    Estes, Zachary; Felker, Sydney

    2012-06-01

    On tasks that require the mental rotation of 3-dimensional figures, males typically exhibit higher accuracy than females. Using the most common measure of mental rotation (i.e., the Mental Rotations Test), we investigated whether individual variability in confidence mediates this sex difference in mental rotation performance. In each of four experiments, the sex difference was reliably elicited and eliminated by controlling or manipulating participants' confidence. Specifically, confidence predicted performance within and between sexes (Experiment 1), rendering confidence irrelevant to the task reliably eliminated the sex difference in performance (Experiments 2 and 3), and manipulating confidence significantly affected performance (Experiment 4). Thus, confidence mediates the sex difference in mental rotation performance and hence the sex difference appears to be a difference of performance rather than ability. Results are discussed in relation to other potential mediators and mechanisms, such as gender roles, sex stereotypes, spatial experience, rotation strategies, working memory, and spatial attention.

  15. Relationships between cohesion, collective efficacy and performance in professional basketball teams: an examination of mediating effects.

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    Heuzé, Jean-Philippe; Raimbault, Nicolas; Fontayne, Paul

    2006-01-01

    The main aim of this study was to examine mediating effects in the relationships between cohesion, collective efficacy and performance in professional basketball teams. A secondary aim was to examine the correlates of collective efficacy in a professional sport. A total of 154 French and foreign professional players completed French or English versions of questionnaires about cohesion and collective efficacy. Two composite measures of individual performance were used (pre- and post-performance). Individual-level analyses were performed. Regression analyses supported two mediating relationships with collective efficacy as a mediator of the pre-performance - Group integration-task relationship, and Group integration-task as a mediator of the pre-performance - collective efficacy relationship. Statistical analyses indicated that neither Group integration-task nor collective efficacy was a better mediator in the relationship between pre-performance and the other group variables. Results also revealed positive relationships between three dimensions of cohesion (i.e. Individual attractions to the group-task, Group integration-task, Group integration-social) and collective efficacy. These findings suggest that in professional basketball teams, staff members should look after athletes who perform at a lower or below their usual level because their performances might lead them into a downward cohesion - collective efficacy spiral. Staff members should also develop a high quality of group functioning, both on and off the basketball court, given its relationship with collective efficacy.

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

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

    2009-01-01

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

  17. The Multiple Roles of the Task Design Mediator in Telecollaboration

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    Fuchs, Carolin; Snyder, Bill; Tung, Bruce; Jung Han, Yu

    2017-01-01

    This case study explores how a Chinese-American novice teacher acted as mediator in a telecollaboration with student teacher (ST) peers in the USA who designed tasks for his English as a foreign language (EFL) learners in China. The novice teacher was instrumental in mediating the student teachers' task design process by providing feedback…

  18. Board Task Performance

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Minichilli, Alessandro; Zattoni, Alessandro; Nielsen, Sabina

    2012-01-01

    identify three board processes as micro-level determinants of board effectiveness. Specifically, we focus on effort norms, cognitive conflicts and the use of knowledge and skills as determinants of board control and advisory task performance. Further, we consider how two different institutional settings....... The findings show that: (i) Board processes have a larger potential than demographic variables to explain board task performance; (ii) board task performance differs significantly between boards operating in different contexts; and (iii) national context moderates the relationships between board processes...... and board task performance....

  19. Nonoccurrence of Negotiation of Meaning in Task-Based Synchronous Computer-Mediated Communication

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    Van Der Zwaard, Rose; Bannink, Anne

    2016-01-01

    This empirical study investigated the occurrence of meaning negotiation in an interactive synchronous computer-mediated second language (L2) environment. Sixteen dyads (N = 32) consisting of nonnative speakers (NNSs) and native speakers (NSs) of English performed 2 different tasks using videoconferencing and written chat. The data were coded and…

  20. Placebo-mediated, Naloxone-sensitive suggestibility of short-term memory performance.

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    Stern, Jair; Candia, Victor; Porchet, Roseline I; Krummenacher, Peter; Folkers, Gerd; Schedlowski, Manfred; Ettlin, Dominik A; Schönbächler, Georg

    2011-03-01

    Physiological studies of placebo-mediated suggestion have been recently performed beyond their traditional clinical context of pain and analgesia. Various neurotransmitter systems and immunological modulators have been used in successful placebo suggestions, including Dopamine, Cholecystokinin and, most extensively, opioids. We adhered to an established conceptual framework of placebo research and used the μ-opioid-antagonist Naloxone to test the applicability of this framework within a cognitive domain (e.g. memory) in healthy volunteers. Healthy men (n=62, age 29, SD=9) were required to perform a task-battery, including standardized and custom-designed memory tasks, to test short-term recall and delayed recognition. Tasks were performed twice, before and after intravenous injection of either NaCl (0.9%) or Naloxone (both 0.15 mg/kg), in a double-blind setting. While one group was given neutral information (S-), the other was told that it might receive a drug with suspected memory-boosting properties (S+). Objective and subjective indexes of memory performance and salivary cortisol (as a stress marker) were recorded during both runs and differences between groups were assessed. Short-term memory recall, but not delayed recognition, was objectively increased after placebo-mediated suggestion in the NaCl-group. Naloxone specifically blocked the suggestion effect without interfering with memory performance. These results were not affected when changes in salivary cortisol levels were considered. No reaction time changes, recorded to uncover unspecific attentional impairment, were seen. Placebo-mediated suggestion produced a training-independent, objective and Naloxone-sensitive increase in memory performance. These results indicate an opioid-mediated placebo effect within a circumscribed cognitive domain in healthy volunteers. Copyright © 2011 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

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

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    Mehta, Ravi; Zhu, Rui Juliet

    2009-02-27

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

  2. Does the medium matter? The interaction of task type and technology on group performance and member reactions.

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    Straus, S G; McGrath, J E

    1994-02-01

    The authors investigated the hypothesis that as group tasks pose greater requirements for member interdependence, communication media that transmit more social context cues will foster group performance and satisfaction. Seventy-two 3-person groups of undergraduate students worked in either computer-mediated or face-to-face meetings on 3 tasks with increasing levels of interdependence: an idea-generation task, an intellective task, and a judgment task. Results showed few differences between computer-mediated and face-to-face groups in the quality of the work completed but large differences in productivity favoring face-to-face groups. Analysis of productivity and of members' reactions supported the predicted interaction of tasks and media, with greater discrepancies between media conditions for tasks requiring higher levels of coordination. Results are discussed in terms of the implications of using computer-mediated communications systems for group work.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2012-01-01

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

  4. Working memory capacity predicts conflict-task performance

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Gulbinaite, Rasa; Johnson, Addie

    The relationship between the ability to maintain task goals and working memory capacity (WMC) is firmly established, but evidence for WMC-related differences in conflict processing is mixed. We investigated whether WMC (measured using two complex-span tasks) mediates differences in adjustments of

  5. Promising high monetary rewards for future task performance increases intermediate task performance.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Claire M Zedelius

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

  6. Promising high monetary rewards for future task performance increases intermediate task performance.

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

    2012-01-01

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

  7. Attention Deficit ِDuring Dual-Task Performance in Alzheimer’s Disease Patients

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Hamid Salehi

    2014-07-01

    Full Text Available Objectives: The aims of the present investigation was the evaluation of divided attention deficits in Alzheimer's disease (AD patients by using dual-task paradigm in order to ascertain whether this method can be useful in the early diagnosis of AD or not.  Methods & Materials: A total of 23 elderly individuals (11 females and 12 males voluntarily participated in the investigation: 13 patients with Alzheimer's disease (AD and 10 healthy elderly individuals. The experimental setup consisted of (a single -task and (b dual-task trials at two levels of difficulty. In singletask condition, the participants were asked to recite the months of the year continuously with normal order (easy and backward (difficult. They also performed a computerized visuospatial/motor tracking task. The participants then performed the tracking task in conjunction with each of the months reciting tasks as dual-task condition. Results: The results showed a significant interaction (disease×level of difficulty effect. So that, the performance impairment on combine performance in two simultaneous tasks was related to task difficulty, but the elderly control group did not differ in the easy and difficult conditions. Conclusion: These findings not only increase our understanding of the attention deficits in AD patients, but also have implications for the mediating effect of cognitive load in using dual-task paradigm for studying attention mechanisms of cognitively suffered individuals.

  8. Transformational leadership and task cohesion in sport: the mediating role of inside sacrifice.

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    Cronin, Lorcan Donal; Arthur, Calum Alexander; Hardy, James; Callow, Nichola

    2015-02-01

    In this cross-sectional study, we examined a mediational model whereby transformational leadership is related to task cohesion via sacrifice. Participants were 381 American (Mage = 19.87 years, SD = 1.41) Division I university athletes (188 males, 193 females) who competed in a variety of sports. Participants completed measures of coach transformational leadership, personal and teammate inside sacrifice, and task cohesion. After conducting multilevel mediation analysis, we found that both personal and teammate inside sacrifice significantly mediated the relationships between transformational leadership behaviors and task cohesion. However, there were differential patterns of these relationships for male and female athletes. Interpretation of the results highlights that coaches should endeavor to display transformational leadership behaviors as they are related to personal and teammate inside sacrifices and task cohesion.

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

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

    2013-01-01

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

  10. Working Memory Training Improves Dual-Task Performance on Motor Tasks.

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    Kimura, Takehide; Kaneko, Fuminari; Nagahata, Keita; Shibata, Eriko; Aoki, Nobuhiro

    2017-01-01

    The authors investigated whether working memory training improves motor-motor dual-task performance consisted of upper and lower limb tasks. The upper limb task was a simple reaction task and the lower limb task was an isometric knee extension task. 45 participants (age = 21.8 ± 1.6 years) were classified into a working memory training group (WM-TRG), dual-task training group, or control group. The training duration was 2 weeks (15 min, 4 times/week). Our results indicated that working memory capacity increased significantly only in the WM-TRG. Dual-task performance improved in the WM-TRG and dual-task training group. Our study provides the novel insight that working memory training improves dual-task performance without specific training on the target motor task.

  11. Computer-Related Task Performance

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Longstreet, Phil; Xiao, Xiao; Sarker, Saonee

    2016-01-01

    The existing information system (IS) literature has acknowledged computer self-efficacy (CSE) as an important factor contributing to enhancements in computer-related task performance. However, the empirical results of CSE on performance have not always been consistent, and increasing an individual......'s CSE is often a cumbersome process. Thus, we introduce the theoretical concept of self-prophecy (SP) and examine how this social influence strategy can be used to improve computer-related task performance. Two experiments are conducted to examine the influence of SP on task performance. Results show...... that SP and CSE interact to influence performance. Implications are then discussed in terms of organizations’ ability to increase performance....

  12. General Slowing and Education Mediate Task Switching Performance Across the Life-Span

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Luca Moretti

    2018-05-01

    Full Text Available Objective: This study considered the potential role of both protective factors (cognitive reserve, CR and adverse ones (general slowing in modulating cognitive flexibility in the adult life-span.Method: Ninety-eight individuals performed a task-switching (TS paradigm in which we adopted a manipulation concerning the timing between the cue and the target. Working memory demands were minimized by using transparent cues. Additionally, indices of cognitive integrity, depression, processing speed and different CR dimensions were collected and used in linear models accounting for TS performance under the different time constraints.Results: The main results showed similar mixing costs and higher switching costs in older adults, with an overall age-dependent effect of general slowing on these costs. The link between processing speed and TS performance was attenuated when participants had more time to prepare. Among the different CR indices, formal education only was associated with reduced switch costs under time pressure.Discussion: Even though CR is often operationalized as a unitary construct, the present research confirms the benefits of using tools designed to distinguish between different CR dimensions. Furthermore, our results provide empirical support to the assumption that processing speed influence on executive performance depends on time constraints. Finally, it is suggested that whether age differences appear in terms of switch or mixing costs depends on working memory demands (which were low in our tasks with transparent cues.

  13. Working memory capacity predicts conflict-task performance.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gulbinaite, Rasa; Johnson, Addie

    2014-01-01

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

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2014-01-01

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

  15. How lead founder personality affects new venture performance : the mediating role of team conflict

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Jong, de A.; Song, M.; Song, L.Z.

    2013-01-01

    This empirical study of 323 new ventures examines how task and relationship conflict in the founding top management team mediates the effect of lead founder personality on new venture performance. The results reveal that (1) openness and agreeableness increase task conflict, whereas

  16. How Lead Founder Personality Affects New Venture Performance: The Mediating Role of Team Conflict

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    de Jong, Ad; Song, Michael; Song, Lisa Z.

    2013-01-01

    This empirical study of 323 new ventures examines how task and relationship conflict in the founding top management team mediates the effect of lead founder personality on new venture performance. The results reveal that (1) openness and agreeableness increase task conflict, whereas

  17. Brain activation during dual-task processing is associated with cardiorespiratory fitness and performance in older adults

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Chelsea N Wong

    2015-08-01

    Full Text Available Higher cardiorespiratory fitness is associated with better cognitive performance and enhanced brain activation. Yet, the extent to which cardiorespiratory fitness-related brain activation is associated with better cognitive performance is not well understood. In this cross-sectional study, we examined whether the association between cardiorespiratory fitness and executive function was mediated by greater prefrontal cortex activation in healthy older adults. Brain activation was measured during dual-task performance with functional magnetic resonance imaging in a sample of 128 healthy older adults (59-80 years. Higher cardiorespiratory fitness was associated with greater activation during dual-task processing in several brain areas including the anterior cingulate and supplementary motor cortex (ACC/SMA, thalamus and basal ganglia, right motor/somatosensory cortex and middle frontal gyrus, and left somatosensory cortex, controlling for age, sex, education, and gray matter volume. Of these regions, greater ACC/SMA activation mediated the association between cardiorespiratory fitness and dual-task performance. We provide novel evidence that cardiorespiratory fitness may support cognitive performance by facilitating brain activation in a core region critical for executive function.

  18. How does emotion influence different creative performances? The mediating role of cognitive flexibility.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lin, Wei-Lun; Tsai, Ping-Hsun; Lin, Hung-Yu; Chen, Hsueh-Chih

    2014-01-01

    Cognitive flexibility is proposed to be one of the factors underlying how positive emotions can improve creativity. However, previous works have seldom set up or empirically measured an independent index to demonstrate its mediating effect, nor have they investigated its mediating role on different types of creative performances, which involve distinct processes. In this study, 120 participants were randomly assigned to positive, neutral or negative affect conditions. Their levels of cognitive flexibility were then measured by a switch task. Finally, their creative performances were calibrated by either an open-ended divergent thinking test or a closed-ended insight problem-solving task. The results showed that positive emotional states could reduce switch costs and enhance both types of creative performances. However, cognitive flexibility exhibited a full mediating effect only on the relationship between positive emotion and insight problem solving, but not between positive emotion and divergent thinking. Divergent thinking was instead more associated with arousal level. These results suggest that emotions might influence different creative performances through distinct mechanisms.

  19. Health worker performance in rural health organizations in low- and middle-income countries: do organizational factors predict non-task performance?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jayasuriya, Rohan; Jayasinghe, Upali W; Wang, Qian

    2014-07-01

    Health worker (HW) performance is a critical issue facing many low- and middle-income countries (LMICs). The aim of this study was to test the effects of factors in the work environment, such as organizational culture and climate, on HW non-task performance in rural health work settings in a LMIC. The data for the study is from a sample of 963 HWs from rural health centres (HCs) in 16 of the 20 provinces in Papua New Guinea. The reliability and validity of measures for organizational citizenship behaviour (OCB), counterproductive work behaviour (CWB) and work climate (WC) were tested. Multilevel linear regression models were used to test the relationship of individual and HC level factors with non-task performance. The survey found that 62 per cent of HCs practised OCB "often to always" and 5 percent practised CWB "often to always". Multilevel analysis revealed that WC had a positive effect on organizational citizenship behaviour (OCB) and a negative effect on CWB. The mediation analyses provided evidence that the relationship between WC and OCB was mediated through CWB. Human resource policies that improve WC in rural health settings would increase positive non-task behaviour and improve the motivation and performance of HWs in rural settings in LMICs. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  20. Mediators of methylphenidate effects on math performance in children with attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Froehlich, Tanya E; Antonini, Tanya N; Brinkman, William B; Langberg, Joshua M; Simon, John O; Adams, Ryan; Fredstrom, Bridget; Narad, Megan E; Kingery, Kathleen M; Altaye, Mekibib; Matheson, Heather; Tamm, Leanne; Epstein, Jeffery N

    2014-01-01

    Stimulant medications, such as methylphenidate (MPH), improve the academic performance of children with attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD). However, the mechanism by which MPH exerts an effect on academic performance is unclear. We examined MPH effects on math performance and investigated possible mediation of MPH effects by changes in time on-task, inhibitory control, selective attention, and reaction time variability. Children with ADHD aged 7 to 11 years (N = 93) completed a timed math worksheet (with problems tailored to each individual's level of proficiency) and 2 neuropsychological tasks (Go/No-Go and Child Attention Network Test) at baseline, then participated in a 4-week, randomized, controlled, titration trial of MPH. Children were then randomly assigned to their optimal MPH dose or placebo for 1 week (administered double-blind) and repeated the math and neuropsychological tasks (posttest). Baseline and posttest videorecordings of children performing the math task were coded to assess time on-task. Children taking MPH completed 23 more math problems at posttest compared to baseline, whereas the placebo group completed 24 fewer problems on posttest versus baseline, but the effects on math accuracy (percent correct) did not differ. Path analyses revealed that only change in time on-task was a significant mediator of MPH's improvements in math productivity. MPH-derived math productivity improvements may be explained in part by increased time spent on-task, rather than improvements in neurocognitive parameters, such as inhibitory control, selective attention, or reaction time variability.

  1. Pre-task music improves swimming performance.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Smirmaul, B P; Dos Santos, R V; Da Silva Neto, L V

    2015-12-01

    The purpose of this study was to investigate the effects of pre-task music on swimming performance and other psychological variables. A randomized counterbalanced within-subjects (experimental and control condition) design was employed. Eighteen regional level male swimmers performed two 200-m freestyle swimming time trials. Participants were exposed to either 5 minutes of self-selected music (pre-task music condition) or 5 minutes of silence (control condition) and, after 1 minute, performed the swimming task. Swimming time was significantly shorter (-1.44%) in the pre-task music condition. Listening to pre-task music increased motivation to perform the swimming task, while arousal remained unchanged. While fatigue increased after the swimming task in both conditions, vigor, ratings of perceived exertion and affective valence were unaltered. It is concluded, for the first time, that pre-task music improves swimming performance.

  2. A Randomized Controlled ERP Study on the Effects of Multi-Domain Cognitive Training and Task Difficulty on Task Switching Performance in Older Adults

    Science.gov (United States)

    Küper, Kristina; Gajewski, Patrick D.; Frieg, Claudia; Falkenstein, Michael

    2017-01-01

    Executive functions are subject to a marked age-related decline, but have been shown to benefit from cognitive training interventions. As of yet, it is, however, still relatively unclear which neural mechanism can mediate training-related performance gains. In the present electrophysiological study, we examined the effects of multi-domain cognitive training on performance in an untrained cue-based task switch paradigm featuring Stroop color words: participants either had to indicate the word meaning of Stroop stimuli (word task) or perform the more difficult task of color naming (color task). One-hundred and three older adults (>65 years old) were randomly assigned to a training group receiving a 4-month multi-domain cognitive training, a passive no-contact control group or an active (social) control group receiving a 4-month relaxation training. For all groups, we recorded performance and EEG measures before and after the intervention. For the cognitive training group, but not for the two control groups, we observed an increase in response accuracy at posttest, irrespective of task and trial type. No training-related effects on reaction times were found. Cognitive training was also associated with an overall increase in N2 amplitude and a decrease of P2 latency on single trials. Training-related performance gains were thus likely mediated by an enhancement of response selection and improved access to relevant stimulus-response mappings. Additionally, cognitive training was associated with an amplitude decrease in the time window of the target-locked P3 at fronto-central electrodes. An increase in the switch positivity during advance task preparation emerged after both cognitive and relaxation training. Training-related behavioral and event-related potential (ERP) effects were not modulated by task difficulty. The data suggest that cognitive training increased slow negative potentials during target processing which enhanced the N2 and reduced a subsequent P3-like

  3. Neurophysiological and behavioral indices of time pressure effects on visuomotor task performance.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Slobounov, S M; Fukada, K; Simon, R; Rearick, M; Ray, W

    2000-06-01

    Using a video game format, this study examined the effects of time pressure (TP) on behavioral and electrocortical indices. The behavioral results were consistent with previous time pressure research in that TP reduced time to perform a task and increases behavioral errors. In addition, electroencephalogram (EEG) measures showed distinctive patterns associated with TP in the theta, mu, and gamma bands along the midline. Site specific changes in the success vs. failure trials were also seen in midline theta at Fz, gamma at Fz, and mu at Cz. Right parietal alpha also differentiated TP and success vs. failure trials. In specific TP (1) increased frontal midline theta activity and (2) increased gamma at midline (frontal, central, and partietal) and in right frontal areas. The results of these findings are discussed in terms of the formation of specific neurocognitive strategies as evidenced by the topographic distribution of task-related modulation of the EEG within certain frequency bands. It is suggested that the effect of TP on visuomotor performance is mediated by adopting either task-relevant or task-irrelevant neurocognitive strategies as evidenced by successful or failed trials, respectively. Whether these strategies are formulated prior to performance or appear spontaneously during task performance remains unclear and is awaiting further experimentation.

  4. Performance Enhancements Under Dual-task Conditions

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kramer, A. F.; Wickens, C. D.; Donchin, E.

    1984-01-01

    Research on dual-task performance has been concerned with delineating the antecedent conditions which lead to dual-task decrements. Capacity models of attention, which propose that a hypothetical resource structure underlies performance, have been employed as predictive devices. These models predict that tasks which require different processing resources can be more successfully time shared than tasks which require common resources. The conditions under which such dual-task integrality can be fostered were assessed in a study in which three factors likely to influence the integrality between tasks were manipulated: inter-task redundancy, the physical proximity of tasks and the task relevant objects. Twelve subjects participated in three experimental sessions in which they performed both single and dual-tasks. The primary task was a pursuit step tracking task. The secondary tasks required the discrimination between different intensities or different spatial positions of a stimulus. The results are discussed in terms of a model of dual-task integrality.

  5. Neural Determinants of Task Performance during Feature-Based Attention in Human Cortex

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gong, Mengyuan

    2018-01-01

    Abstract Studies of feature-based attention have associated activity in a dorsal frontoparietal network with putative attentional priority signals. Yet, how this neural activity mediates attentional selection and whether it guides behavior are fundamental questions that require investigation. We reasoned that endogenous fluctuations in the quality of attentional priority should influence task performance. Human subjects detected a speed increment while viewing clockwise (CW) or counterclockwise (CCW) motion (baseline task) or while attending to either direction amid distracters (attention task). In an fMRI experiment, direction-specific neural pattern similarity between the baseline task and the attention task revealed a higher level of similarity for correct than incorrect trials in frontoparietal regions. Using transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS), we disrupted posterior parietal cortex (PPC) and found a selective deficit in the attention task, but not in the baseline task, demonstrating the necessity of this cortical area during feature-based attention. These results reveal that frontoparietal areas maintain attentional priority that facilitates successful behavioral selection. PMID:29497703

  6. Structural Correlates of Skilled Performance on a Motor Sequence Task

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Christopher J Steele

    2012-10-01

    Full Text Available The brain regions functionally engaged in motor sequence performance are well established, but the structural characteristics of these regions and the fibre pathways involved have been less well studied. In addition, relatively few studies have combined multiple magnetic resonance imaging (MRI and behavioural performance measures in the same sample. Therefore, the current study used diffusion tensor imaging, probabilistic tractography, and voxel-based morphometry to determine the structural correlates of skilled motor performance. Further, we compared these findings with fMRI results in the same sample. We correlated final performance and rate of improvement measures on a temporal motor sequence task with skeletonised fractional anisotropy (FA and whole brain grey matter (GM volume. Final synchronisation performance was negatively correlated with FA in white matter underlying bilateral sensorimotor cortex – an effect that was mediated by a positive correlation with radial diffusivity. Multi-fibre tractography indicated that this region contained crossing fibres from the corticospinal tract and superior longitudinal fasciculus (SLF. The identified SLF pathway linked parietal and auditory cortical regions that have been shown to be functionally engaged in this task. Thus, we hypothesise that enhanced synchronisation performance on this task may be related to greater fibre integrity of the SLF. Rate of improvement on synchronisation was positively correlated with GM volume in cerebellar lobules HVI and V – regions that showed training-related decreases in activity in the same sample. Taken together, our results link individual differences in brain structure and function to motor sequence performance on the same task. Further, our study illustrates the utility of using multiple MR measures and analysis techniques to specify the interpretation of structural findings.

  7. Climate uniformity: its influence on team communication quality, task conflict, and team performance.

    Science.gov (United States)

    González-Romá, Vicente; Hernández, Ana

    2014-11-01

    We investigated whether climate uniformity (the pattern of climate perceptions of organizational support within the team) is related to task conflict, team communication quality, and team performance. We used a sample composed of 141 bank branches and collected data at 3 time points. The results obtained showed that, after controlling for aggregate team climate, climate strength, and their interaction, a type of nonuniform climate pattern (weak dissimilarity) was directly related to task conflict and team communication quality. Teams with weak dissimilarity nonuniform patterns tended to show higher levels of task conflict and lower levels of team communication quality than teams with uniform climate patterns. The relationship between weak dissimilarity patterns and team performance was fully mediated by team communication quality. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2014 APA, all rights reserved).

  8. Poor Performance on Serial Visual Tasks in Persons with Reading Disabilities: Impaired Working Memory?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ram-Tsur, Ronit; Faust, Miriam; Zivotofsky, Ari Z.

    2008-01-01

    The present study investigates the performance of persons with reading disabilities (PRD) on a variety of sequential visual-comparison tasks that have different working-memory requirements. In addition, mediating relationships between the sequential comparison process and attention and memory skills were looked for. Our findings suggest that PRD…

  9. Does the mask govern the mind?: effects of arbitrary gender representation on quantitative task performance in avatar-represented virtual groups.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lee, Jong-Eun Roselyn; Nass, Clifford I; Bailenson, Jeremy N

    2014-04-01

    Virtual environments employing avatars for self-representation-including the opportunity to represent or misrepresent social categories-raise interesting and intriguing questions as to how one's avatar-based social category shapes social identity dynamics, particularly when stereotypes prevalent in the offline world apply to the social categories visually represented by avatars. The present experiment investigated how social category representation via avatars (i.e., graphical representations of people in computer-mediated environments) affects stereotype-relevant task performance. In particular, building on and extending the Proteus effect model, we explored whether and how stereotype lift (i.e., a performance boost caused by the awareness of a domain-specific negative stereotype associated with outgroup members) occurred in virtual group settings in which avatar-based gender representation was arbitrary. Female and male participants (N=120) were randomly assigned either a female avatar or a male avatar through a process masked as a random drawing. They were then placed in a numerical minority status with respect to virtual gender-as the only virtual female (male) in a computer-mediated triad with two opposite-gendered avatars-and performed a mental arithmetic task either competitively or cooperatively. The data revealed that participants who were arbitrarily represented by a male avatar and competed against two ostensible female avatars showed strongest performance compared to others on the arithmetic task. This pattern occurred regardless of participants' actual gender, pointing to a virtual stereotype lift effect. Additional mediation tests showed that task motivation partially mediated the effect. Theoretical and practical implications for social identity dynamics in avatar-based virtual environments are discussed.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2012-01-01

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

  11. Predictive performance models and multiple task performance

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    1989-01-01

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

  12. Planning and task management in Parkinson's disease: differential emphasis in dual-task performance.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bialystok, Ellen; Craik, Fergus I M; Stefurak, Taresa

    2008-03-01

    Seventeen patients diagnosed with Parkinson's disease completed a complex computer-based task that involved planning and management while also performing an attention-demanding secondary task. The tasks were performed concurrently, but it was necessary to switch from one to the other. Performance was compared to a group of healthy age-matched control participants and a group of young participants. Parkinson's patients performed better than the age-matched controls on almost all measures and as well as the young controls in many cases. However, the Parkinson's patients achieved this by paying relatively less attention to the secondary task and focusing attention more on the primary task. Thus, Parkinson's patients can apparently improve their performance on some aspects of a multidimensional task by simplifying task demands. This benefit may occur as a consequence of their inflexible exaggerated attention to some aspects of a complex task to the relative neglect of other aspects.

  13. Exposure to Psychological Aggression at Work and Job Performance: The Mediating Role of Job Attitudes and Personal Health.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schat, Aaron; Frone, Michael R

    2011-01-01

    Despite the growing literature on workplace aggression and the importance of employee performance at work, few studies have examined the relation between workplace aggression and job performance. The purpose of this study was to investigate the relations between psychological aggression at work and two forms of job performance (task performance and contextual performance) and potential mediators of these relations. Based on Conservation of Resources theory and prior research, a model was developed and tested in which overall job attitudes (i.e., job satisfaction and organizational commitment) and overall personal health (i.e., physical and psychological health) fully mediate the relations between exposure to psychological aggression at work and both task performance and contextual performance. Data were obtained from a national probability sample of US workers (N = 2376) and the model was tested using structural equation modelling. The results supported the hypothesized model, demonstrating that exposure to psychological aggression at work negatively predicted both task performance and contextual performance, and that these relations were explained by decrements in job attitudes and health associated with exposure to psychological aggression at work.

  14. Short-term memory and dual task performance

    Science.gov (United States)

    Regan, J. E.

    1982-01-01

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

  15. Transformational Leaders and Work Performance: The Mediating Roles of Identification and Self-efficacy

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Flávia Cavazotte

    2013-10-01

    Full Text Available In this study we investigate the connections between transformational leadership and subordinate formal and contextual performance among Brazilian employees. We also proposed and tested two mediating processesthrough which transformational leaders would enhance the performance of their staff: stronger follower identification with the leader and efficacy beliefs. These relations were tested with a sample of 107 managers from a multinational company that operates in the financial sector. The proposed structural equation model was assessed with Partial Least Squares (PLS techniques. The results suggest that perceived transformational leadership is associated with higher levels of task performance and helping behaviors. Moreover, the proposed mediating processes were empirically supported. We discuss implications for theory and practice.

  16. The predictive value of general movement tasks in assessing occupational task performance.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Frost, David M; Beach, Tyson A C; McGill, Stuart M; Callaghan, Jack P

    2015-01-01

    Within the context of evaluating individuals' movement behavior it is generally assumed that the tasks chosen will predict their competency to perform activities relevant to their occupation. This study sought to examine whether a battery of general tasks could be used to predict the movement patterns employed by firefighters to perform select job-specific skills. Fifty-two firefighters performed a battery of general and occupation-specific tasks that simulated the demands of firefighting. Participants' peak lumbar spine and frontal plane knee motion were compared across tasks. During 85% of all comparisons, the magnitude of spine and knee motion was greater during the general movement tasks than observed during the firefighting skills. Certain features of a worker's movement behavior may be exhibited across a range of tasks. Therefore, provided that a movement screen's tasks expose the motions of relevance for the population being tested, general evaluations could offer valuable insight into workers' movement competency or facilitate an opportunity to establish an evidence-informed intervention.

  17. Single-task and dual-task tandem gait test performance after concussion.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Howell, David R; Osternig, Louis R; Chou, Li-Shan

    2017-07-01

    To compare single-task and dual-task tandem gait test performance between athletes after concussion with controls on observer-timed, spatio-temporal, and center-of-mass (COM) balance control measurements. Ten participants (19.0±5.5years) were prospectively identified and completed a tandem gait test protocol within 72h of concussion and again 1 week, 2 weeks, 1 month, and 2 months post-injury. Seven uninjured controls (20.0±4.5years) completed the same protocol in similar time increments. Tandem gait test trials were performed with (dual-task) and without (single-task) concurrently performing a cognitive test as whole-body motion analysis was performed. Outcome variables included test completion time, average tandem gait velocity, cadence, and whole-body COM frontal plane displacement. Concussion participants took significantly longer to complete the dual-task tandem gait test than controls throughout the first 2 weeks post-injury (mean time=16.4 [95% CI: 13.4-19.4] vs. 10.1 [95% CI: 6.4-13.7] seconds; p=0.03). Single-task tandem gait times were significantly lower 72h post-injury (p=0.04). Dual-task cadence was significantly lower for concussion participants than controls (89.5 [95% CI: 68.6-110.4] vs. 127.0 [95% CI: 97.4-156.6] steps/minute; p=0.04). Moderately-high to high correlations between tandem gait test time and whole-body COM medial-lateral displacement were detected at each time point during dual-task gait (r s =0.70-0.93; p=0.03-0.001). Adding a cognitive task during the tandem gait test resulted in longer detectable deficits post-concussion compared to the traditional single-task tandem gait test. As a clinical tool to assess dynamic motor function, tandem gait may assist with return to sport decisions after concussion. Copyright © 2017 Sports Medicine Australia. Published by Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  18. Performance samples on academic tasks : improving prediction of academic performance

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Tanilon, Jenny

    2011-01-01

    This thesis is about the development and validation of a performance-based test, labeled as Performance Samples on academic tasks in Education and Child Studies (PSEd). PSEd is designed to identify students who are most able to perform the academic tasks involved in an Education and Child Studies

  19. The mediating role of emotional exhaustion in the relationship of mindfulness with turnover intentions and job performance

    OpenAIRE

    Reb, J; Narayanan, J; Chaturvedi, S; Ekkirala, S

    2016-01-01

    The role of mindfulness in the workplace has emerged as a legitimate and growing area of organizational scholarship. T he present research examined the role of employee emotional exhaustion in mediating the relationship of mindfulness with turnover intentions and task performance . Drawing on theory and empirical research on both organizational behavior and mindfulness, w e predicted that more mindful employees would show lower turnover intentions and higher task performance and that th e s e...

  20. Health-Related Behavior Mediates the Association Between Personality and Memory Performance in Older Adults.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Allen, Mark S; Laborde, Sylvain; Walter, Emma E

    2017-03-01

    This prospective study explored the potential mediating role of health-related behavior (alcohol involvement, diet, television viewing, and physical activity) in the association between personality and change in memory performance over 2 years. A nationally representative sample of 8,376 U.K. participants aged 55 years and older (4,572 women, 3,804 men) completed self-report measures of personality and health-related behavior in 2010, and completed a memory performance task in 2010 and 2012. After removing variance associated with potential confounding variables, neuroticism and agreeableness had negative associations, and openness and conscientiousness positive associations with change in memory performance. There were no moderation effects by age, sex, education level, or ethnicity. Multiple mediator models demonstrated that physical activity, television viewing, and alcohol intake mediated associations between personality and change in memory performance. These findings provide evidence that the association between personality and memory performance in older adults can be explained, in part, through health-related behavior.

  1. The relationship between task conflict, task performance and team member satisfaction: the mediating role of relationship conflict

    OpenAIRE

    Hansen, Rebecca

    2015-01-01

    Task conflict and its potential positive effect on team outcomes has been questioned over the years. The findings have been inconsistent, with different studies indicating that task conflict can be positively related, negatively related or unrelated to measures of team outcomes. This study is a response to the request presented in de Wit, Greer and Jehn s (2012) recent meta-analysis, to further investigate the effect relationship conflict can have on the association between task conflict and...

  2. Musical expertise has minimal impact on dual task performance.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cocchini, Gianna; Filardi, Maria Serena; Crhonkova, Marcela; Halpern, Andrea R

    2017-05-01

    Studies investigating effect of practice on dual task performance have yielded conflicting findings, thus supporting different theoretical accounts about the organisation of attentional resources when tasks are performed simultaneously. Because practice has been proven to reduce the demand of attention for the trained task, the impact of long-lasting training on one task is an ideal way to better understand the mechanisms underlying dual task decline in performance. Our study compared performance during dual task execution in expert musicians compared to controls with little if any musical experience. Participants performed a music recognition task and a visuo-spatial task separately (single task) or simultaneously (dual task). Both groups showed a significant but similar performance decline during dual tasks. In addition, the two groups showed a similar decline of dual task performance during encoding and retrieval of the musical information, mainly attributed to a decline in sensitivity. Our results suggest that attention during dual tasks is similarly distributed by expert and non-experts. These findings are in line with previous studies showing a lack of sensitivity to difficulty and lack of practice effect during dual tasks, supporting the idea that different tasks may rely on different and not-sharable attentional resources.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2013-01-01

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

  4. Dividing attention between tasks : Testing whether explicit payoff functions elicit optimal dual-task performance

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Farmer, George D.; Janssen, C.P.|info:eu-repo/dai/nl/412781654; Nguyen, Anh T; Brumby, Duncan P.

    2018-01-01

    We test people's ability to optimize performance across two concurrent tasks. Participants performed a number entry task while controlling a randomly moving cursor with a joystick. Participants received explicit feedback on their performance on these tasks in the form of a single combined score.

  5. Teammate Prosocial and Antisocial Behaviors Predict Task Cohesion and Burnout: The Mediating Role of Affect.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Al-Yaaribi, Ali; Kavussanu, Maria

    2017-06-01

    The manner in which teammates behave toward each other when playing sport could have important achievement-related consequences. However, this issue has received very little research attention. In this study, we investigated whether (a) prosocial and antisocial teammate behaviors predict task cohesion and burnout, and (b) positive and negative affect mediates these relationships. In total, 272 (M age  = 21.86, SD = 4.36) team-sport players completed a multisection questionnaire assessing the aforementioned variables. Structural equation modeling indicated that prosocial teammate behavior positively predicted task cohesion and negatively predicted burnout, and these relationships were mediated by positive affect. The reverse pattern of relationships was observed for antisocial teammate behavior which negatively predicted task cohesion and positively predicted burnout, and these relationships were mediated by negative affect. Our findings underscore the importance of promoting prosocial and reducing antisocial behaviors in sport and highlight the role of affect in explaining the identified relationships.

  6. Task performance in astronomical adaptive optics

    Science.gov (United States)

    Barrett, Harrison H.; Myers, Kyle J.; Devaney, Nicholas; Dainty, J. C.; Caucci, Luca

    2006-06-01

    In objective or task-based assessment of image quality, figures of merit are defined by the performance of some specific observer on some task of scientific interest. This methodology is well established in medical imaging but is just beginning to be applied in astronomy. In this paper we survey the theory needed to understand the performance of ideal or ideal-linear (Hotelling) observers on detection tasks with adaptive-optical data. The theory is illustrated by discussing its application to detection of exoplanets from a sequence of short-exposure images.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    1986-01-01

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

  8. Event-related potentials and secondary task performance during simulated driving.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wester, A E; Böcker, K B E; Volkerts, E R; Verster, J C; Kenemans, J L

    2008-01-01

    Inattention and distraction account for a substantial number of traffic accidents. Therefore, we examined the impact of secondary task performance (an auditory oddball task) on a primary driving task (lane keeping). Twenty healthy participants performed two 20-min tests in the Divided Attention Steering Simulator (DASS). The visual secondary task of the DASS was replaced by an auditory oddball task to allow recording of brain activity. The driving task and the secondary (distracting) oddball task were presented in isolation and simultaneously, to assess their mutual interference. In addition to performance measures (lane keeping in the primary driving task and reaction speed in the secondary oddball task), brain activity, i.e. event-related potentials (ERPs), was recorded. Performance parameters on the driving test and the secondary oddball task did not differ between performance in isolation and simultaneous performance. However, when both tasks were performed simultaneously, reaction time variability increased in the secondary oddball task. Analysis of brain activity indicated that ERP amplitude (P3a amplitude) related to the secondary task, was significantly reduced when the task was performed simultaneously with the driving test. This study shows that when performing a simple secondary task during driving, performance of the driving task and this secondary task are both unaffected. However, analysis of brain activity shows reduced cortical processing of irrelevant, potentially distracting stimuli from the secondary task during driving.

  9. Paw Preference Correlates to Task Performance in Dogs

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Alphen, A. van; Bosse, T.; Frank, I.; Jonker, C.M.; Koeman, F.; Bara, B.G.; Barsalou, L.; Bucciarelli, M.

    2005-01-01

    A study involving 36 domestic dogs (Canis familiaris) in a simple search task provides evidence of a correlation between paw use and performance. The study was carried out to determine whether or not paw use is related to task performance. Different aspects of task performance were taken into

  10. Preferential processing of task-irrelevant beloved-related information and task performance: Two event-related potential studies.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Langeslag, Sandra J E; van Strien, Jan W

    2017-09-18

    People who are in love have better attention for beloved-related information, but report having trouble focusing on other tasks, such as (home)work. So, romantic love can both improve and hurt cognition. Emotional information is preferentially processed, which improves task performance when the information is task-relevant, but hurts task performance when it is task-irrelevant. Because beloved-related information is highly emotional, the effects of romantic love on cognition may resemble these effects of emotion on cognition. We examined whether beloved-related information is preferentially processed even when it is task-irrelevant and whether this hurts task performance. In two event-related potential studies, participants who had recently fallen in love performed a visuospatial short-term memory task. Task-irrelevant beloved, friend, and stranger faces were presented during maintenance (Study 1), or encoding (Study 2). The Early Posterior Negativity (EPN) reflecting early automatic attentional capturing and the Late Positive Potential (LPP) reflecting sustained motivated attention were largest for beloved pictures. Thus, beloved pictures are preferentially processed even when they are task-irrelevant. Task performance and reaction times did not differ between beloved, friend, and stranger conditions. Nevertheless, self-reported obsessive thinking about the beloved tended to correlate negatively with task performance, and positively with reaction times, across conditions. So, although task-irrelevant beloved-related information does not impact task performance, more obsessive thinking about the beloved might relate to poorer and slower overall task performance. More research is needed to clarify why people experience trouble focusing on beloved-unrelated tasks and how this negative effect of love on cognition could be reduced. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2013-01-01

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

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2018-06-01

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

  13. Strategy use fully mediates the relationship between working memory capacity and performance on Raven's matrices.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gonthier, Corentin; Thomassin, Noémylle

    2015-10-01

    Working memory capacity consistently correlates with fluid intelligence. It has been suggested that this relationship is partly attributable to strategy use: Participants with high working memory capacity would use more effective strategies, in turn leading to higher performance on fluid intelligence tasks. However, this idea has never been directly investigated. In 2 experiments, we tested this hypothesis by directly manipulating strategy use in a combined experimental-correlational approach (Experiment 1; N = 250) and by measuring strategy use with a self-report questionnaire (Experiment 2; N = 93). Inducing all participants to use an effective strategy in Raven's matrices decreased the correlation between working memory capacity and performance; the strategy use measure fully mediated the relationship between working memory capacity and performance on the matrices task. These findings indicate that individual differences in strategic behavior drive the predictive utility of working memory. We interpret the results within a theoretical framework integrating the multiple mediators of the relationship between working memory capacity and high-level cognition. (c) 2015 APA, all rights reserved).

  14. Trait Mindfulness and Cognitive Task Performance

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Emalee J. W. Quickel

    2014-11-01

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

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kormos, Judit; Trebits, Anna

    2012-01-01

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

  16. Implicit and Explicit Knowledge Both Improve Dual Task Performance in a Continuous Pursuit Tracking Task.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ewolds, Harald E; Bröker, Laura; de Oliveira, Rita F; Raab, Markus; Künzell, Stefan

    2017-01-01

    The goal of this study was to investigate the effect of predictability on dual-task performance in a continuous tracking task. Participants practiced either informed (explicit group) or uninformed (implicit group) about a repeated segment in the curves they had to track. In Experiment 1 participants practices the tracking task only, dual-task performance was assessed after by combining the tracking task with an auditory reaction time task. Results showed both groups learned equally well and tracking performance on a predictable segment in the dual-task condition was better than on random segments. However, reaction times did not benefit from a predictable tracking segment. To investigate the effect of learning under dual-task situation participants in Experiment 2 practiced the tracking task while simultaneously performing the auditory reaction time task. No learning of the repeated segment could be demonstrated for either group during the training blocks, in contrast to the test-block and retention test, where participants performed better on the repeated segment in both dual-task and single-task conditions. Only the explicit group improved from test-block to retention test. As in Experiment 1, reaction times while tracking a predictable segment were no better than reaction times while tracking a random segment. We concluded that predictability has a positive effect only on the predictable task itself possibly because of a task-shielding mechanism. For dual-task training there seems to be an initial negative effect of explicit instructions, possibly because of fatigue, but the advantage of explicit instructions was demonstrated in a retention test. This might be due to the explicit memory system informing or aiding the implicit memory system.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    Baggett, H. Lane; And Others

    1996-01-01

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

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    Strobach, Tilo; Schütz, Anja; Schubert, Torsten

    2015-01-01

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

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    Strobach, Tilo; Schütz, Anja; Schubert, Torsten

    2015-01-01

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

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Tilo eStrobach

    2015-04-01

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

  1. Impact of task design on task performance and injury risk: case study of a simulated drilling task.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Alabdulkarim, Saad; Nussbaum, Maury A; Rashedi, Ehsan; Kim, Sunwook; Agnew, Michael; Gardner, Richard

    2017-06-01

    Existing evidence is limited regarding the influence of task design on performance and ergonomic risk, or the association between these two outcomes. In a controlled experiment, we constructed a mock fuselage to simulate a drilling task common in aircraft manufacturing, and examined the effect of three levels of workstation adjustability on performance as measured by productivity (e.g. fuselage completion time) and quality (e.g. fuselage defective holes), and ergonomic risk as quantified using two common methods (rapid upper limb assessment and the strain index). The primary finding was that both productivity and quality significantly improved with increased adjustability, yet this occurred only when that adjustability succeeded in reducing ergonomic risk. Supporting the inverse association between ergonomic risk and performance, the condition with highest adjustability created the lowest ergonomic risk and the best performance while there was not a substantial difference in ergonomic risk between the other two conditions, in which performance was also comparable. Practitioner Summary: Findings of this study supported a causal relationship between task design and both ergonomic risk and performance, and that ergonomic risk and performance are inversely associated. While future work is needed under more realistic conditions and a broader population, these results may be useful for task (re)design and to help cost-justify some ergonomic interventions.

  2. Workplace for analysis of task performance

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Bos, J; Mulder, LJM; van Ouwerkerk, RJ; Maarse, FJ; Akkerman, AE; Brand, AN; Mulder, LJM

    2003-01-01

    In current research on mental workload and task performance a large gap exists between laboratory based studies and research projects in real life working practice. Tasks conducted within a laboratory environment often lack a strong resemblance with real life working situations. This paper presents

  3. Pleasantness of Creative Tasks and Creative Performance

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zenasni, Franck; Lubart, Todd

    2011-01-01

    To examine the impact of emotion on creative potential, experimental studies have typically focused on the impact of induced or spontaneous mood states on creative performance. In this report the relationship between the perceived pleasantness of tasks (using divergent thinking and story writing tasks) and creative performance was examined.…

  4. When predictions take control: The effect of task predictions on task switching performance

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Wout eDuthoo

    2012-08-01

    Full Text Available In this paper, we aimed to investigate the role of self-generated predictions in the flexible control of behaviour. Therefore, we ran a task switching experiment in which participants were asked to try to predict the upcoming task in three conditions varying in switch rate (30%, 50% and 70%. Irrespective of their predictions, the colour of the target indicated which task participants had to perform. In line with previous studies (Mayr, 2006; Monsell & Mizon, 2006, the switch cost was attenuated as the switch rate increased. Importantly, a clear task repetition bias was found in all conditions, yet the task repetition prediction rate dropped from 78% over 66% to 49% with increasing switch probability in the three conditions. Irrespective of condition, the switch cost was strongly reduced in expectation of a task alternation compared to the cost of an unexpected task alternation following repetition predictions. Hence, our data suggest that the reduction in the switch cost with increasing switch probability is caused by a diminished expectancy for the task to repeat. Taken together, this paper highlights the importance of predictions in the flexible control of behaviour, and suggests a crucial role for task repetition expectancy in the context-sensitive adjusting of task switching performance.

  5. Sleep deprivation and time-on-task performance decrement in the rat psychomotor vigilance task.

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2015-03-01

    The rat psychomotor vigilance task (rPVT) was developed as a rodent analog of the human psychomotor vigilance task (hPVT). We examined whether rPVT performance displays time-on-task effects similar to those observed on the hPVT. The rPVT requires rats to respond to a randomly presented light stimulus to obtain a water reward. Rats were water deprived for 22 h prior to each 30-min rPVT session to motivate performance. We analyzed rPVT performance over time on task and as a function of the response-stimulus interval, at baseline and after sleep deprivation. The study was conducted in an academic research vivarium. Male Long-Evans rats were trained to respond to a 0.5 sec stimulus light within 3 sec of stimulus onset. Complete data were available for n = 20 rats. Rats performed the rPVT for 30 min at baseline and after 24 h total sleep deprivation by gentle handling. Compared to baseline, sleep deprived rats displayed increased performance lapses and premature responses, similar to hPVT lapses of attention and false starts. However, in contrast to hPVT performance, the time-on-task performance decrement was not significantly enhanced by sleep deprivation. Moreover, following sleep deprivation, rPVT response times were not consistently increased after short response-stimulus intervals. The rPVT manifests similarities to the hPVT in global performance outcomes, but not in post-sleep deprivation effects of time on task and response-stimulus interval. © 2015 Associated Professional Sleep Societies, LLC.

  6. Illegitimate Tasks as an Impediment to Job Satisfaction and Intrinsic Motivation: Moderated Mediation Effects of Gender and Effort-Reward Imbalance.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Omansky, Rachel; Eatough, Erin M; Fila, Marcus J

    2016-01-01

    The current work examines a contemporary workplace stressor that has only recently been introduced into the literature: illegitimate tasks. Illegitimate tasks are work tasks that violate identity role norms about what can reasonably be expected from an employee in a given position. Although illegitimate tasks have been linked to employee well-being in past work, we know little about the potential explanatory mechanisms linking illegitimate tasks to work-relevant negative psychological states. Using a sample of 213 US-based employees of mixed occupations and a cross-sectional design, the present study examines job satisfaction and intrinsic motivation as outcomes of illegitimate tasks. Additionally, we examine perception of effort-reward imbalance (ERI) as a potential mediating mechanism through which illegitimate tasks relate to job satisfaction and intrinsic motivation, highlighting a possible pathway by which these relationships are functioning. Finally, we explore gender as a socially constructed variable that could contribute to variation in responses to illegitimate tasks and moderate the mediated link between illegitimate tasks and outcomes. Results indicated that illegitimate tasks were significantly related to job satisfaction and intrinsic motivation both directly and indirectly through perceptions of ERI in the predicted directions. Moreover, a moderated-mediation effect was found such that male workers reacted more than female workers to illegitimate tasks through the mechanism of perceived ERI.

  7. Illegitimate Tasks as an Impediment to Job Satisfaction and Intrinsic Motivation: Moderated Mediation Effects of Gender and Effort-Reward Imbalance.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Rachel Omansky

    2016-11-01

    Full Text Available The current work examines a contemporary workplace stressor that has only recently been introduced into the literature: illegitimate tasks. Illegitimate tasks are work tasks that violate identity role norms about what can reasonably be expected from an employee in a given position. Although illegitimate tasks have been linked to employee well-being in past work, we know little about the potential explanatory mechanisms linking illegitimate tasks to work-relevant negative psychological states. Using a sample of 213 US-based employees of mixed occupations and a cross-sectional design, the present study examines job satisfaction and intrinsic motivation as outcomes of illegitimate tasks. Additionally, we examine perception of effort-reward imbalance as a potential mediating mechanism through which illegitimate tasks relate to job satisfaction and intrinsic motivation, highlighting a possible pathway by which these relationships are functioning. Finally, we explore gender as a socially constructed variable that could contribute to variation in responses to illegitimate tasks and moderate the mediated link between illegitimate tasks and outcomes. Results indicated that illegitimate tasks were significantly related to job satisfaction and intrinsic motivation both directly and indirectly through perceptions of effort-reward imbalance in the predicted directions. Moreover, a moderated-mediation effect was found such that male workers reacted more than female workers to illegitimate tasks through the mechanism of perceived effort-reward imbalance.

  8. Illegitimate Tasks as an Impediment to Job Satisfaction and Intrinsic Motivation: Moderated Mediation Effects of Gender and Effort-Reward Imbalance

    Science.gov (United States)

    Omansky, Rachel; Eatough, Erin M.; Fila, Marcus J.

    2016-01-01

    The current work examines a contemporary workplace stressor that has only recently been introduced into the literature: illegitimate tasks. Illegitimate tasks are work tasks that violate identity role norms about what can reasonably be expected from an employee in a given position. Although illegitimate tasks have been linked to employee well-being in past work, we know little about the potential explanatory mechanisms linking illegitimate tasks to work-relevant negative psychological states. Using a sample of 213 US-based employees of mixed occupations and a cross-sectional design, the present study examines job satisfaction and intrinsic motivation as outcomes of illegitimate tasks. Additionally, we examine perception of effort-reward imbalance (ERI) as a potential mediating mechanism through which illegitimate tasks relate to job satisfaction and intrinsic motivation, highlighting a possible pathway by which these relationships are functioning. Finally, we explore gender as a socially constructed variable that could contribute to variation in responses to illegitimate tasks and moderate the mediated link between illegitimate tasks and outcomes. Results indicated that illegitimate tasks were significantly related to job satisfaction and intrinsic motivation both directly and indirectly through perceptions of ERI in the predicted directions. Moreover, a moderated-mediation effect was found such that male workers reacted more than female workers to illegitimate tasks through the mechanism of perceived ERI. PMID:27917145

  9. Exploring the role of task performance and learning style on prefrontal hemodynamics during a working memory task.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Anderson, Afrouz A; Parsa, Kian; Geiger, Sydney; Zaragoza, Rachel; Kermanian, Riley; Miguel, Helga; Dashtestani, Hadis; Chowdhry, Fatima A; Smith, Elizabeth; Aram, Siamak; Gandjbakhche, Amir H

    2018-01-01

    Existing literature outlines the quality and location of activation in the prefrontal cortex (PFC) during working memory (WM) tasks. However, the effects of individual differences on the underlying neural process of WM tasks are still unclear. In this functional near infrared spectroscopy study, we administered a visual and auditory n-back task to examine activation in the PFC while considering the influences of task performance, and preferred learning strategy (VARK score). While controlling for age, results indicated that high performance (HP) subjects (accuracy > 90%) showed task dependent lower activation compared to normal performance subjects in PFC region Specifically HP groups showed lower activation in left dorsolateral PFC (DLPFC) region during performance of auditory task whereas during visual task they showed lower activation in the right DLPFC. After accounting for learning style, we found a correlation between visual and aural VARK score and level of activation in the PFC. Subjects with higher visual VARK scores displayed lower activation during auditory task in left DLPFC, while those with higher visual scores exhibited higher activation during visual task in bilateral DLPFC. During performance of auditory task, HP subjects had higher visual VARK scores compared to NP subjects indicating an effect of learning style on the task performance and activation. The results of this study show that learning style and task performance can influence PFC activation, with applications toward neurological implications of learning style and populations with deficits in auditory or visual processing.

  10. Computer task performance by subjects with Duchenne muscular dystrophy.

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2016-01-01

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

  11. Interpreting instructional cues in task switching procedures: the role of mediator retrieval.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Logan, Gordon D; Schneider, Darryl W

    2006-03-01

    In 3 experiments the role of mediators in task switching with transparent and nontransparent cues was examined. Subjects switched between magnitude (greater or less than 5) and parity (odd or even) judgments of single digits. A cue-target congruency effect indicated mediator use: subjects responded faster to congruent cue-target combinations (e.g., ODD-3) than to incongruent cue-target combinations (e.g., ODD-4). Experiment 1 revealed significant congruency effects with transparent word cues (ODD, EVEN, HIGH, and LOW) and with relatively transparent letter cues (O, E, H, and L) but not with nontransparent letter cues (D, V, G, and W). Experiment 2 revealed significant congruency effects after subjects who were trained with nontransparent letter cues were informed of the relations between cues and word mediators halfway through the experiment. Experiment 3 showed that congruency effects with relatively transparent letter cues diminished over 10 sessions of practice, suggesting that subjects used mediators less as practice progressed. The results are discussed in terms of the role of mediators in interpreting instructional cues.

  12. Continuous Performance Tasks: Not Just about Sustaining Attention

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2016-01-01

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

  13. An examination of mediators of the transfer of cognitive speed of processing training to everyday functional performance.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Edwards, Jerri D; Ruva, Christine L; O'Brien, Jennifer L; Haley, Christine B; Lister, Jennifer J

    2013-06-01

    The purpose of these analyses was to examine mediators of the transfer of cognitive speed of processing training to improved everyday functional performance (J. D. Edwards, V. G. Wadley,, D. E. Vance, D. L. Roenker, & K. K. Ball, 2005, The impact of speed of processing training on cognitive and everyday performance. Aging & Mental Health, 9, 262-271). Cognitive speed of processing and visual attention (as measured by the Useful Field of View Test; UFOV) were examined as mediators of training transfer. Secondary data analyses were conducted from the Staying Keen in Later Life (SKILL) study, a randomized cohort study including 126 community dwelling adults 63 to 87 years of age. In the SKILL study, participants were randomized to an active control group or cognitive speed of processing training (SOPT), a nonverbal, computerized intervention involving perceptual practice of visual tasks. Prior analyses found significant effects of training as measured by the UFOV and Timed Instrumental Activities of Daily Living (TIADL) Tests. Results from the present analyses indicate that speed of processing for a divided attention task significantly mediated the effect of SOPT on everyday performance (e.g., TIADL) in a multiple mediation model accounting for 91% of the variance. These findings suggest that everyday functional improvements found from SOPT are directly attributable to improved UFOV performance, speed of processing for divided attention in particular. Targeting divided attention in cognitive interventions may be important to positively affect everyday functioning among older adults. PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2013 APA, all rights reserved.

  14. Distractions, distractions: does instant messaging affect college students' performance on a concurrent reading comprehension task?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fox, Annie Beth; Rosen, Jonathan; Crawford, Mary

    2009-02-01

    Instant messaging (IM) has become one of the most popular forms of computer-mediated communication (CMC) and is especially prevalent on college campuses. Previous research suggests that IM users often multitask while conversing online. To date, no one has yet examined the cognitive effect of concurrent IM use. Participants in the present study (N = 69) completed a reading comprehension task uninterrupted or while concurrently holding an IM conversation. Participants who IMed while performing the reading task took significantly longer to complete the task, indicating that concurrent IM use negatively affects efficiency. Concurrent IM use did not affect reading comprehension scores. Additional analyses revealed that the more time participants reported spending on IM, the lower their reading comprehension scores. Finally, we found that the more time participants reported spending on IM, the lower their self-reported GPA. Implications and future directions are discussed.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2010-01-01

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

  16. Masticatory muscle activity during deliberately performed oral tasks

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Farella, M; Palla, S; Erni, S; Gallo, L M; Michelotti, A

    2008-01-01

    The aim of this study was to investigate masticatory muscle activity during deliberately performed functional and non-functional oral tasks. Electromyographic (EMG) surface activity was recorded unilaterally from the masseter, anterior temporalis and suprahyoid muscles in 11 subjects (5 men, 6 women; age = 34.6 ± 10.8 years), who were accurately instructed to perform 30 different oral tasks under computer guidance using task markers. Data were analyzed by descriptive statistics, repeated measurements analysis of variance (ANOVA) and hierarchical cluster analysis. The maximum EMG amplitude of the masseter and anterior temporalis muscles was more often found during hard chewing tasks than during maximum clenching tasks. The relative contribution of masseter and anterior temporalis changed across the tasks examined (F ≥ 5.2; p ≤ 0.001). The masseter muscle was significantly (p ≤ 0.05) more active than the anterior temporalis muscle during tasks involving incisal biting, jaw protrusion, laterotrusion and jaw cupping, the difference being statistically significant (p ≤ 0.05). The anterior temporalis muscle was significantly (p ≤ 0.01) more active than the masseter muscle during tasks performed in intercuspal position, during tooth grinding, and during hard chewing on the working side. Based upon the relative contribution of the masseter, anterior temporalis, and suprahyoid muscles, the investigated oral tasks could be grouped into six separate clusters. The findings provided further insight into muscle- and task-specific EMG patterns during functional and non-functional oral behaviors

  17. Priming performance-related concerns induces task-related mind-wandering.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jordano, Megan L; Touron, Dayna R

    2017-10-01

    Two experiments tested the hypothesis that priming of performance-related concerns would (1) increase the frequency of task-related mind-wandering (i.e., task-related interference; TRI) and (2) decrease task performance. In each experiment, sixty female participants completed an operation span task (OSPAN) containing thought content probes. The task was framed as a math task for those in a condition primed for math-related stereotype threat and as a memory task for those in a control condition. In both studies, women whose performance-related concerns were primed via stereotype threat reported more TRI than women in the control. The second experiment used a more challenging OSPAN task and stereotype primed women also had lower math accuracy than controls. These results support the "control failures×current concerns" framework of mind-wandering, which posits that the degree to which the environmental context triggers personal concerns influences both mind-wandering frequency and content. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  18. Within-person relationship between self-efficacy and performance across trials. Effect of task objective and task type.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hepler, Teri J; Ritchie, Jason; Hill, Christopher R

    2017-07-05

    Self-efficacy has been shown to be a consistent, positive predictor of between-persons performance in sport. However, there have been equivocal results regarding the influence of self-efficacy on a person's performance over time. This study investigated the influence of self-efficacy on motor skill performance across trials with respect to two different task objectives and task types. Participants (N=84) performed 4 blocks of 10 trials of a dart throwing (closed skill) and a hitting (open skill) task under 2 different task objectives: competitive and goal-striving. For the goal-striving condition, success was defined as reaching a pre-determined performance level. The competitive condition involved competing against an opponent. Hierarchical linear modeling was used to examine the influence of past performance and self-efficacy on the within-person performance across multiple trials. Previous performance was negatively related with subsequent performance on all conditions. Self-efficacy was not a significant predictor of performance on any of the conditions. While task objective and task type did not moderate the efficacy-performance relationship in the current study, it is important to consider the role of other moderators in future research.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2015-08-01

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

  20. The Effect of Task Duration on Event-Based Prospective Memory: A Multinomial Modeling Approach

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Hongxia Zhang

    2017-11-01

    Full Text Available Remembering to perform an action when a specific event occurs is referred to as Event-Based Prospective Memory (EBPM. This study investigated how EBPM performance is affected by task duration by having university students (n = 223 perform an EBPM task that was embedded within an ongoing computer-based color-matching task. For this experiment, we separated the overall task’s duration into the filler task duration and the ongoing task duration. The filler task duration is the length of time between the intention and the beginning of the ongoing task, and the ongoing task duration is the length of time between the beginning of the ongoing task and the appearance of the first Prospective Memory (PM cue. The filler task duration and ongoing task duration were further divided into three levels: 3, 6, and 9 min. Two factors were then orthogonally manipulated between-subjects using a multinomial processing tree model to separate the effects of different task durations on the two EBPM components. A mediation model was then created to verify whether task duration influences EBPM via self-reminding or discrimination. The results reveal three points. (1 Lengthening the duration of ongoing tasks had a negative effect on EBPM performance while lengthening the duration of the filler task had no significant effect on it. (2 As the filler task was lengthened, both the prospective and retrospective components show a decreasing and then increasing trend. Also, when the ongoing task duration was lengthened, the prospective component decreased while the retrospective component significantly increased. (3 The mediating effect of discrimination between the task duration and EBPM performance was significant. We concluded that different task durations influence EBPM performance through different components with discrimination being the mediator between task duration and EBPM performance.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2017-06-22

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

  2. Self-Efficacy, Task Complexity and Task Performance: Exploring Interactions in Two Versions of Vocabulary Learning Tasks

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2012-01-01

    The present study aimed for better understanding of the interactions between task complexity and students' self-efficacy beliefs and students' use of learning strategies, and finally their interacting effects on task performance. This investigation was carried out in the context of Chinese students learning English as a foreign language in a…

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    Botzer, Assaf; Meyer, Joachim; Parmet, Yisrael

    2016-09-01

    Binary cues help operators perform binary categorization tasks, such as monitoring for system failures. They may also allow them to attend to other tasks they concurrently perform. If the time saved by using cues is allocated to other concurrent tasks, users' overall effort may remain unchanged. In 2 experiments, participants performed a simulated quality control task, together with a tracking task. In half the experimental blocks cues were available, and participants could use them in their decisions about the quality of products (intact or faulty). In Experiment 1, the difficulty of tracking was constant, while in Experiment 2, tracking difficulty differed in the 2 halves of the experiment. In both experiments, participants reported on the NASA Task Load Index that cues improved their performance and reduced their frustration. Consequently, their overall score on mental workload (MWL) was lower with cues. They also reported, however, that cues did not reduce their effort. We conclude that cues and other forms of automation may support task performance and reduce overall MWL, but this will not necessarily mean that users will work less hard. Thus, effort and overall MWL should be evaluated separately, if one wants to obtain a full picture of the effects of automation. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2016 APA, all rights reserved).

  4. The impact of task characteristics on the performance of nursing teams

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Azlyn Ahmad Zawawi, PhD

    2017-07-01

    Conclusions: This study demonstrated that task significance is important to predict team task performance. Task significance reflects meaningfulness and nobility of tasks, thus elevate the desire to perform better in each assigned task.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    Moradzadeh, Linda; Blumenthal, Galit; Wiseheart, Melody

    2015-07-01

    This study investigated whether musical training and bilingualism are associated with enhancements in specific components of executive function, namely, task switching and dual-task performance. Participants (n = 153) belonging to one of four groups (monolingual musician, bilingual musician, bilingual non-musician, or monolingual non-musician) were matched on age and socioeconomic status and administered task switching and dual-task paradigms. Results demonstrated reduced global and local switch costs in musicians compared with non-musicians, suggesting that musical training can contribute to increased efficiency in the ability to shift flexibly between mental sets. On dual-task performance, musicians also outperformed non-musicians. There was neither a cognitive advantage for bilinguals relative to monolinguals, nor an interaction between music and language to suggest additive effects of both types of experience. These findings demonstrate that long-term musical training is associated with improvements in task switching and dual-task performance. Copyright © 2014 Cognitive Science Society, Inc.

  6. Effect of pre-task music on sports or exercise performance.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Smirmaul, Bruno P

    2017-01-01

    Pre-task music is a very common strategy among sports competitors. However, as opposed to in-task music, the scientific evidence to support its ergogenic effects on either sports or exercise performance is limited. This brief review critically addresses the existing literature investigating the effects of pre-task music on sports and exercise performance, focusing on the methods and results of experimental studies, and offers basic and practical recommendations. In July 2015, a comprehensive literature search was performed in Web of Science, PubMed, and Google Scholar using the following key words in combination: "pre-task music," "pre-test music," "pre-exercise music," "exercise performance," "sports performance." The literature search was further expanded by both hand searching review articles on the topic and by searching the reference lists from the articles retrieved for any relevant references. Overall, a total of 15 studies in 14 articles were included. Pre-task music research has been unsystematic, methodologically limited and infrequent. Using this review as a starting point to overcome previous methodological limitations when designing future experiments may contribute to the development of pre-task music research, which is still in its infancy. Currently, there is no sufficient evidence to support the overall ergogenic effects of pre-task music on sports or exercise performance. Nonetheless, pre-task music has showed a likely ergogenic effect on shorter and predominantly anaerobic tasks such as grip strength, Wingate test, and short-duration sports or sports-like tasks, in contrast to longer and predominantly aerobic tasks.

  7. Ability Beliefs, Task Value, and Performance as a Function of Race in a Dart-Throwing Task

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gao, Zan; Kosma, Maria; Harrison, Louis, Jr.

    2009-01-01

    This study examines differences in self-efficacy, expectancy-related beliefs, task value, and performance in a dart-throwing task as a function of race among diverse college students using the expectancy-value model and self-efficacy theory. It also examines the predictive contributions of these beliefs on task performance within each racial…

  8. Training improves laparoscopic tasks performance and decreases operator workload.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hu, Jesse S L; Lu, Jirong; Tan, Wee Boon; Lomanto, Davide

    2016-05-01

    It has been postulated that increased operator workload during task performance may increase fatigue and surgical errors. The National Aeronautics and Space Administration-Task Load Index (NASA-TLX) is a validated tool for self-assessment for workload. Our study aims to assess the relationship of workload and performance of novices in simulated laparoscopic tasks of different complexity levels before and after training. Forty-seven novices without prior laparoscopic experience were recruited in a trial to investigate whether training improves task performance as well as mental workload. The participants were tested on three standard tasks (ring transfer, precision cutting and intracorporeal suturing) in increasing complexity based on the Fundamentals of Laparoscopic Surgery (FLS) curriculum. Following a period of training and rest, participants were tested again. Test scores were computed from time taken and time penalties for precision errors. Test scores and NASA-TLX scores were recorded pre- and post-training and analysed using paired t tests. One-way repeated measures ANOVA was used to analyse differences in NASA-TLX scores between the three tasks. NASA-TLX score was lowest with ring transfer and highest with intracorporeal suturing. This was statistically significant in both pre-training (p NASA-TLX scores mirror the changes in test scores for the three tasks. Workload scores decreased significantly after training for all three tasks (ring transfer = 2.93, p NASA-TLX score is an accurate reflection of the complexity of simulated laparoscopic tasks in the FLS curriculum. This also correlates with the relationship of test scores between the three tasks. Simulation training improves both performance score and workload score across the tasks.

  9. "Thinking about numbers is not my idea of fun": need for cognition mediates age differences in numeracy performance.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bruine de Bruin, Wändi; McNair, Simon J; Taylor, Andrea L; Summers, Barbara; Strough, JoNell

    2015-01-01

    Numeracy refers to people's ability to use numbers. Low numeracy has been associated with difficulties in understanding risk-benefit information and making health decisions. Older adults tend to perform worse than younger adults on measures of numeracy, but some theories of aging suggest that older adults may lack motivation for such tasks. We therefore test whether age differences in numeracy performance are mediated by a reduced motivation to think hard about complex problems-as measured by need for cognition. We recruited an age-diverse convenience sample of 306 UK adults. They completed measures of numeracy and need for cognition. They self-reported their educational attainment and other demographics. Older age was related to lower numeracy and lower need for cognition. The negative relationship between age and numeracy was mediated by need for cognition. These findings held after we controlled for educational attainment and other demographic factors. Older adults may show lower numeracy performance due to lack of motivation. We discuss strategies for improving people's motivation to complete numeracy measures and other numerical tasks. © The Author(s) 2014.

  10. The curvilinear relationship between work pressure and momentary task performance: the role of state and trait core self-evaluations.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hofmans, Joeri; Debusscher, Jonas; Dóci, Edina; Spanouli, Andromachi; De Fruyt, Filip

    2015-01-01

    Whereas several studies have demonstrated that core self-evaluations (CSE)-or one's appraisals about one's own self-worth, capabilities, and competences-relate to job outcomes, less is known about the mechanisms underlying these relationships. In the present study, we address this issue by examining the role of within- and between-person variation in CSE in the relationship between work pressure and task performance. We hypothesized that (a) work pressure relates to task performance in a curvilinear way, (b) state CSE mediates the curvilinear relationship between work pressure and task performance, and (c) the relationship between work pressure and state CSE is moderated by trait CSE. Our hypotheses were tested via a 10-day daily diary study with 55 employees in which trait CSE was measured at baseline, while work pressure, task performance, and state CSE were assessed on a daily basis. Bayesian multilevel path analysis showed that work pressure affects task performance via state CSE, with state CSE increasing as long as the employee feels that (s)he is able to handle the work pressure, while it decreases when the level of work pressure exceeds the employees' coping abilities. Moreover, we found that for people low on trait CSE, the depleting effect of work pressure via state CSE happens for low levels of work pressure, while for people high in trait CSE the depleting effect is located at high levels of work pressure. Together, our findings suggest that the impact of work pressure on task performance is driven by a complex interplay of between- and within-person differences in CSE.

  11. Chinese Preservice Teachers' Professional Identity Links with Education Program Performance: The Roles of Task Value Belief and Learning Motivations.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhang, Yan; Hawk, Skyler T; Zhang, Xiaohui; Zhao, Hongyu

    2016-01-01

    Professional identity is a key issue spanning the entirety of teachers' career development. Despite the abundance of existing research examining professional identity, its link with occupation-related behavior at the primary career stage (i.e., GPA in preservice education) and the potential process that underlies this association is still not fully understood. This study explored the professional identity of Chinese preservice teachers, and its links with task value belief, intrinsic learning motivation, extrinsic learning motivation, and performance in the education program. Grade-point average (GPA) of courses (both subject and pedagogy courses) was examined as an indicator of performance, and questionnaires were used to measure the remaining variables. Data from 606 preservice teachers in the first 3 years of a teacher-training program indicated that: (1) variables in this research were all significantly correlated with each other, except the correlation between intrinsic learning motivation and program performance; (2) professional identity was positively linked to task value belief, intrinsic and extrinsic learning motivations, and program performance in a structural equation model (SEM); (3) task value belief was positively linked to intrinsic and extrinsic learning motivation; (4) higher extrinsic (but not intrinsic) learning motivation was associated with increased program performance; and (5) task value belief and extrinsic learning motivation were significant mediators in the model.

  12. Chinese Preservice Teachers’ Professional Identity Links with Education Program Performance: The Roles of Task Value Belief and Learning Motivations

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhang, Yan; Hawk, Skyler T.; Zhang, Xiaohui; Zhao, Hongyu

    2016-01-01

    Professional identity is a key issue spanning the entirety of teachers’ career development. Despite the abundance of existing research examining professional identity, its link with occupation-related behavior at the primary career stage (i.e., GPA in preservice education) and the potential process that underlies this association is still not fully understood. This study explored the professional identity of Chinese preservice teachers, and its links with task value belief, intrinsic learning motivation, extrinsic learning motivation, and performance in the education program. Grade-point average (GPA) of courses (both subject and pedagogy courses) was examined as an indicator of performance, and questionnaires were used to measure the remaining variables. Data from 606 preservice teachers in the first 3 years of a teacher-training program indicated that: (1) variables in this research were all significantly correlated with each other, except the correlation between intrinsic learning motivation and program performance; (2) professional identity was positively linked to task value belief, intrinsic and extrinsic learning motivations, and program performance in a structural equation model (SEM); (3) task value belief was positively linked to intrinsic and extrinsic learning motivation; (4) higher extrinsic (but not intrinsic) learning motivation was associated with increased program performance; and (5) task value belief and extrinsic learning motivation were significant mediators in the model. PMID:27199810

  13. Improving Physical Task Performance with Counterfactual and Prefactual Thinking.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hammell, Cecilia; Chan, Amy Y C

    2016-01-01

    Counterfactual thinking (reflecting on "what might have been") has been shown to enhance future performance by translating information about past mistakes into plans for future action. Prefactual thinking (imagining "what might be if…") may serve a greater preparative function than counterfactual thinking as it is future-orientated and focuses on more controllable features, thus providing a practical script to prime future behaviour. However, whether or not this difference in hypothetical thought content may translate into a difference in actual task performance has been largely unexamined. In Experiment 1 (n = 42), participants performed trials of a computer-simulated physical task, in between which they engaged in either task-related hypothetical thinking (counterfactual or prefactual) or an unrelated filler task (control). As hypothesised, prefactuals contained more controllable features than counterfactuals. Moreover, participants who engaged in either form of hypothetical thinking improved significantly in task performance over trials compared to participants in the control group. The difference in thought content between counterfactuals and prefactuals, however, did not yield a significant difference in performance improvement. Experiment 2 (n = 42) replicated these findings in a dynamic balance task environment. Together, these findings provide further evidence for the preparatory function of counterfactuals, and demonstrate that prefactuals share this same functional characteristic.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2016-12-01

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

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2016-10-01

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

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2014-01-01

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

  17. The inhibition of the potassium channel TASK-1 in rat cardiac muscle by endothelin-1 is mediated by phospholipase C.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schiekel, Julia; Lindner, Moritz; Hetzel, Andrea; Wemhöner, Konstantin; Renigunta, Vijay; Schlichthörl, Günter; Decher, Niels; Oliver, Dominik; Daut, Jürgen

    2013-01-01

    The two-pore-domain potassium channel TASK-1 is robustly inhibited by the activation of receptors coupled to the Gα(q) subgroup of G-proteins, but the signal transduction pathway is still unclear. We have studied the mechanisms by which endothelin receptors inhibit the current carried by TASK-1 channels (I(TASK)) in cardiomyocytes. Patch-clamp measurements were carried out in isolated rat cardiomyocytes. I(TASK) was identified by extracellular acidification to pH 6.0 and by the application of the TASK-1 blockers A293 and A1899. Endothelin-1 completely inhibited I(TASK) with an EC(50) of Application of 20 nM endothelin-1 caused a significant increase in action potential duration under control conditions; this was significantly reduced after pre-incubation of the cardiomyocytes with 200 nM A1899. The inhibition of I(TASK) by endothelin-1 was not affected by inhibitors of protein kinase C or rho kinase, but was strongly reduced by U73122, an inhibitor of phospholipase C (PLC). The ability of endothelin-1 to activate PLC-mediated signalling pathways was examined in mammalian cells transfected with TASK-1 and the endothelin-A receptor using patch-clamp measurements and total internal reflection microscopy. U73122 prevented the inhibition of I(TASK) by endothelin-1 and blocked PLC-mediated signalling, as verified with a fluorescent probe for phosphatidylinositol-(4,5)-bisphosphate hydrolysis. Our results show that I(TASK) in rat cardiomyocytes is controlled by endothelin-1 and suggest that the inhibition of TASK-1 via endothelin receptors is mediated by the activation of PLC. The prolongation of the action potential observed with 20 nM endothelin-1 was mainly due to the inhibition of I(TASK).

  18. Rules and more rules: the effects of multiple tasks, extensive training, and aging on task-switching performance.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Buchler, Norbou G; Hoyer, William J; Cerella, John

    2008-06-01

    Task-switching performance was assessed in young and older adults as a function of the number of task sets to be actively maintained in memory (varied from 1 to 4) over the course of extended training (5 days). Each of the four tasks required the execution of a simple computational algorithm, which was instantaneously cued by the color of the two-digit stimulus. Tasks were presented in pure (task set size 1) and mixed blocks (task set sizes 2, 3, 4), and the task sequence was unpredictable. By considering task switching beyond two tasks, we found evidence for a cognitive control system that is not overwhelmed by task set size load manipulations. Extended training eliminated age effects in task-switching performance, even when the participants had to manage the execution of up to four tasks. The results are discussed in terms of current theories of cognitive control, including task set inertia and production system postulates.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    Norcross, Jason R.; Gernhardt, Michael L.

    2011-01-01

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

  20. Estimating the operator's performance time of emergency procedural tasks based on a task complexity measure

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Jung, Won Dae; Park, Jink Yun

    2012-01-01

    It is important to understand the amount of time required to execute an emergency procedural task in a high-stress situation for managing human performance under emergencies in a nuclear power plant. However, the time to execute an emergency procedural task is highly dependent upon expert judgment due to the lack of actual data. This paper proposes an analytical method to estimate the operator's performance time (OPT) of a procedural task, which is based on a measure of the task complexity (TACOM). The proposed method for estimating an OPT is an equation that uses the TACOM as a variable, and the OPT of a procedural task can be calculated if its relevant TACOM score is available. The validity of the proposed equation is demonstrated by comparing the estimated OPTs with the observed OPTs for emergency procedural tasks in a steam generator tube rupture scenario.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2017-01-01

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

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lemay, Moira

    1990-01-01

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

  3. Strategic predictors of performance in a divided attention task

    Science.gov (United States)

    Faragó, Kinga Bettina; Lőrincz, András

    2018-01-01

    In this study we investigate the strategies of subjects in a complex divided attention task. We conducted a series of experiments with ten participants and evaluated their performance. After an extensive analysis, we identified four strategic measures that justify the achievement of the participants, by highlighting the individual differences and predicting performance in a regression analysis using generalized estimating equations. Selecting the more urgent task and user action between multiple simultaneous possibilities form two of the strategic decisions, respectively. The third one refers to choosing a response within the same task when the opportunity is present. The fourth and most important measure of strategy involves thinking ahead and executing an action before a situation would become critical. This latter one has the effect of reducing later cognitive load or timing constraints and it is shown to explain almost as much variance in performance as the other three, more straightforward predictors together. In addition to determining these strategic predictors, we also show how manipulating task difficulty induces a shift in strategy, thus impairing human performance in the rehearsed task. The results of this study indicate that considerable differences in the divided attention ability of normal subjects can be identified early and with simple measurements. The importance of describing and analyzing strategies is also emphasized, which can substantially influence performance in complex tasks and may serve training needs. PMID:29621292

  4. Strategic predictors of performance in a divided attention task.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Róbert Adrian Rill

    Full Text Available In this study we investigate the strategies of subjects in a complex divided attention task. We conducted a series of experiments with ten participants and evaluated their performance. After an extensive analysis, we identified four strategic measures that justify the achievement of the participants, by highlighting the individual differences and predicting performance in a regression analysis using generalized estimating equations. Selecting the more urgent task and user action between multiple simultaneous possibilities form two of the strategic decisions, respectively. The third one refers to choosing a response within the same task when the opportunity is present. The fourth and most important measure of strategy involves thinking ahead and executing an action before a situation would become critical. This latter one has the effect of reducing later cognitive load or timing constraints and it is shown to explain almost as much variance in performance as the other three, more straightforward predictors together. In addition to determining these strategic predictors, we also show how manipulating task difficulty induces a shift in strategy, thus impairing human performance in the rehearsed task. The results of this study indicate that considerable differences in the divided attention ability of normal subjects can be identified early and with simple measurements. The importance of describing and analyzing strategies is also emphasized, which can substantially influence performance in complex tasks and may serve training needs.

  5. Strategic predictors of performance in a divided attention task.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rill, Róbert Adrian; Faragó, Kinga Bettina; Lőrincz, András

    2018-01-01

    In this study we investigate the strategies of subjects in a complex divided attention task. We conducted a series of experiments with ten participants and evaluated their performance. After an extensive analysis, we identified four strategic measures that justify the achievement of the participants, by highlighting the individual differences and predicting performance in a regression analysis using generalized estimating equations. Selecting the more urgent task and user action between multiple simultaneous possibilities form two of the strategic decisions, respectively. The third one refers to choosing a response within the same task when the opportunity is present. The fourth and most important measure of strategy involves thinking ahead and executing an action before a situation would become critical. This latter one has the effect of reducing later cognitive load or timing constraints and it is shown to explain almost as much variance in performance as the other three, more straightforward predictors together. In addition to determining these strategic predictors, we also show how manipulating task difficulty induces a shift in strategy, thus impairing human performance in the rehearsed task. The results of this study indicate that considerable differences in the divided attention ability of normal subjects can be identified early and with simple measurements. The importance of describing and analyzing strategies is also emphasized, which can substantially influence performance in complex tasks and may serve training needs.

  6. Are factors related to dual-task performance in people with Parkinson's disease dependent on the type of dual task?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Strouwen, Carolien; Molenaar, Esther A L M; Keus, Samyra H J; Münks, Liesbeth; Heremans, Elke; Vandenberghe, Wim; Bloem, Bastiaan R; Nieuwboer, Alice

    2016-02-01

    Impaired dual-task performance significantly impacts upon functional mobility in people with Parkinson's disease (PD). The aim of this study was to identify determinants of dual-task performance in people with PD in three different dual tasks to assess their possible task-dependency. We recruited 121 home-dwelling patients with PD (mean age 65.93 years; mean disease duration 8.67 years) whom we subjected to regular walking (control condition) and to three dual-task conditions: walking combined with a backwards Digit Span task, an auditory Stroop task and a Mobile Phone task. We measured dual-task gait velocity using the GAITRite mat and dual-task reaction times and errors on the concurrent tasks as outcomes. Motor, cognitive and descriptive variables which correlated to dual-task performance (p task gait velocity and executive function, tested by the alternating intake test, was significantly associated with gait velocity during the Digit Span (R(2) = 0.65; p task (R(2) = 0.62; p task. Age was a surplus determinant of gait velocity while using a mobile phone. Single-task gait velocity and executive function as measured by a verbal fluency switching task were independent determinants of dual-task gait performance in people with PD. In contrast to expectation, these factors were the same across different tasks, supporting the robustness of the findings. Future study needs to determine whether these factors predict dual-task abnormalities prospectively. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  7. How do task characteristics affect learning and performance? The roles of variably mapped and dynamic tasks.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Macnamara, Brooke N; Frank, David J

    2018-05-01

    For well over a century, scientists have investigated individual differences in performance. The majority of studies have focused on either differences in practice, or differences in cognitive resources. However, the predictive ability of either practice or cognitive resources varies considerably across tasks. We are the first to examine task characteristics' impact on learning and performance in a complex task while controlling for other task characteristics. In 2 experiments we test key theoretical task characteristic thought to moderate the relationship between practice, cognitive resources, and performance. We devised a task where each of several key task characteristics can be manipulated independently. Participants played 5 rounds of a game similar to the popular tower defense videogame Plants vs. Zombies where both cognitive load and game characteristics were manipulated. In Experiment 1, participants either played a consistently mapped version-the stimuli and the associated meaning of their properties were constant across the 5 rounds-or played a variably mapped version-the stimuli and the associated meaning of their properties changed every few minutes. In Experiment 2, participants either played a static version-that is, turn taking with no time pressure-or played a dynamic version-that is, the stimuli moved regardless of participants' response rates. In Experiment 1, participants' accuracy and efficiency were substantially hindered in the variably mapped conditions. In Experiment 2, learning and performance accuracy were hindered in the dynamic conditions, especially when under cognitive load. Our results suggest that task characteristics impact the relative importance of cognitive resources and practice on predicting learning and performance. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2018 APA, all rights reserved).

  8. Processing efficiency theory in children: working memory as a mediator between trait anxiety and academic performance.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Owens, Matthew; Stevenson, Jim; Norgate, Roger; Hadwin, Julie A

    2008-10-01

    Working memory skills are positively associated with academic performance. In contrast, high levels of trait anxiety are linked with educational underachievement. Based on Eysenck and Calvo's (1992) processing efficiency theory (PET), the present study investigated whether associations between anxiety and educational achievement were mediated via poor working memory performance. Fifty children aged 11-12 years completed verbal (backwards digit span; tapping the phonological store/central executive) and spatial (Corsi blocks; tapping the visuospatial sketchpad/central executive) working memory tasks. Trait anxiety was measured using the State-Trait Anxiety Inventory for Children. Academic performance was assessed using school administered tests of reasoning (Cognitive Abilities Test) and attainment (Standard Assessment Tests). The results showed that the association between trait anxiety and academic performance was significantly mediated by verbal working memory for three of the six academic performance measures (math, quantitative and non-verbal reasoning). Spatial working memory did not significantly mediate the relationship between trait anxiety and academic performance. On average verbal working memory accounted for 51% of the association between trait anxiety and academic performance, while spatial working memory only accounted for 9%. The findings indicate that PET is a useful framework to assess the impact of children's anxiety on educational achievement.

  9. Three-dimensional vision enhances task performance independently of the surgical method.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wagner, O J; Hagen, M; Kurmann, A; Horgan, S; Candinas, D; Vorburger, S A

    2012-10-01

    Within the next few years, the medical industry will launch increasingly affordable three-dimensional (3D) vision systems for the operating room (OR). This study aimed to evaluate the effect of two-dimensional (2D) and 3D visualization on surgical skills and task performance. In this study, 34 individuals with varying laparoscopic experience (18 inexperienced individuals) performed three tasks to test spatial relationships, grasping and positioning, dexterity, precision, and hand-eye and hand-hand coordination. Each task was performed in 3D using binocular vision for open performance, the Viking 3Di Vision System for laparoscopic performance, and the DaVinci robotic system. The same tasks were repeated in 2D using an eye patch for monocular vision, conventional laparoscopy, and the DaVinci robotic system. Loss of 3D vision significantly increased the perceived difficulty of a task and the time required to perform it, independently of the approach (P robot than with laparoscopy (P = 0.005). In every case, 3D robotic performance was superior to conventional laparoscopy (2D) (P < 0.001-0.015). The more complex the task, the more 3D vision accelerates task completion compared with 2D vision. The gain in task performance is independent of the surgical method.

  10. Manipulator Performance Evaluation Using Fitts' Taping Task

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

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

    1999-04-25

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

  11. Ranking Performance Measures in Multi-Task Agencies

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Christensen, Peter Ove; Sabac, Florin; Tian, Joyce

    2010-01-01

    We derive sufficient conditions for ranking performance evaluation systems in multi-task agency models (using both optimal and linear contracts) in terms of a second-order stochastic dominance (SSD) condition on the likelihood ratios. The SSD condition can be replaced by a variance-covariance mat......We derive sufficient conditions for ranking performance evaluation systems in multi-task agency models (using both optimal and linear contracts) in terms of a second-order stochastic dominance (SSD) condition on the likelihood ratios. The SSD condition can be replaced by a variance...

  12. A Study on Relationships between Functional Performance and Task Performance Measure through Experiments in NPP MCR

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Jang, In Seok; Seong, Poong Hyun; Park, Jin Kyun

    2011-01-01

    Further improvements in levels of organization, management, man-machine interfaces, education, training, etc. are required, if high operating reliability of operators in huge and complex plants such as chemical plants and electrical power generating plants is to be maintained. Improvement requires good understanding of operators' behavior, including defining what is good performance for operators, especially in emergency situations. Human performance measures, therefore, are important to enhance performance and to reduce the probability of incidents and accidents in Nuclear Power Plants (NPPs). Operators' performance measures are used for multi-objectives such as control room design, human system interface evaluation, training, procedure and so on. There are two kinds of representative methods to measure operators' performance. These methods are now known as the functional performance measure and task performance measure. Functional performance measures are basically based on the plant process parameters. Functional performance measures indicate how well the operators controlled selected critical parameters. The parameters selected in this paper are derived from the four Critical Safety Functions (CSFs) identified in the emergency operating procedures such as achievement of subcriticality, maintenance of core cooling, maintenance of heat sink and maintenance of containment integrity. Task performance measures are based on the task analysis. Task analysis is to determine the tasks required and how operators are performed. In this paper, task analysis is done with ideal path for an accident completed by experts and Emergency Operation Procedure (EOP). However, most literatures related to operators' performance have been using one of these measures and there is no research to find out the relationships between two measures. In this paper, the relationships between functional performance measure and task performance measure are investigated using experiments. Shortly

  13. Workshift and Antihistamine Effects on Task Performance

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Gilliland, Kirby

    1997-01-01

    Sixteen male subjects, well trained on a battery of cognitive performance assessment tasks, participated in a study to Investigate the effects on human operator performance of work shift (Day Shift vs. Mid shift...

  14. Task complexity and task, goal, and reward interdependence in group performance : a prescriptive model

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Vijfeijken, van H.T.G.A.; Kleingeld, P.A.M.; Tuijl, van H.F.J.M.; Algera, J.A.; Thierry, H.

    2002-01-01

    A prescriptive model on how to design effective combinations of goal setting and contingent rewards for group performance management is presented. The model incorporates the constructs task complexity, task interdependence, goal interdependence, and reward interdependence and specifies optimal fit

  15. Performance monitoring in obsessive-compulsive undergraduates: Effects of task difficulty.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Riesel, Anja; Richter, Anika; Kaufmann, Christian; Kathmann, Norbert; Endrass, Tanja

    2015-08-01

    Both obsessive-compulsive disorder and subclinical obsessive-compulsive (OC) symptoms seem to be associated with hyperactive error-related brain activity. The current study examined performance monitoring in subjects with subclinical OC symptoms using a new task with different levels of difficulty. Nineteen subjects with high and 18 subjects with low OC characteristics performed a random dot cinematogram (RDC) task with three levels of difficulty. The high and low OC groups did not differ in error-related negativity (ERN), correct-related negativity (CRN) and performance irrespective of task difficulty. The amplitude of the ERN decreased with increasing difficulty whereas the magnitude of CRN did not vary. ERN and CRN approached in size and topography with increasing difficulty, which suggests that errors and correct responses are processed more similarly. These results add to a growing number of studies that fail to replicate hyperactive performance monitoring in individuals with OC symptoms in task with higher difficulty or requiring learning. Together with these findings our results suggest that the relationship between OC symptoms and performance monitoring may be sensitive to type of task and task characteristics and cannot be observed in a RDC that differs from typically used tasks in difficulty and the amount of response-conflict. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  16. Reduced self-regulation mirrors the distorting effects of burnout symptomatology on task difficulty perception during an inhibition task.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wekenborg, Magdalena Katharina; Hill, LaBarron K; Miller, Robert; Stalder, Tobias; Thayer, Julian Francis; Sophie Penz, Marlene; Kirschbaum, Clemens

    2018-06-09

    Burnout, a pathological consequence of chronic work stress, shows an increasing incidence rate in industrialized countries. Previous findings indicate that burnout may be linked to a detachment of the negative association between subjectively appraised task demand and cognitive performance, which is typically seen in healthy individuals. The present study sought to confirm this relationship and to investigate whether this dissociation is mirrored in a biological marker of self-regulation, i.e., resting vagally mediated heart rate variability (HRV). A heterogeneous sample (N = 65) of working adults (M age = 43.3, SD = 10; 23.1 % male) with varying degrees of burnout symptomatology completed three cognitive tasks (2-back, number-letter, and go/nogo) to assess different domains of executive functioning (updating, set-shifting, and inhibition), and respective demand ratings. Additionally, vagally mediated HRV at rest, operationalized as the root-mean square differences of successive R-R intervals (RMSSD), was recorded. Burnout symptomatology moderated the association between subjective task difficulty and performance parameters of the go/nogo task, such that higher burnout scores were associated with reductions in the naturally occurring negative association between self-rated task demand and response inhibition. Intriguingly, this pattern was mirrored when replacing burnout with HRV. These findings suggest that burnout symptomatology, and individual differences in self-regulatory capacities (indexed by resting HRV), may alter one's capacity for accurate task evaluation, a mechanism which could potentially underlie the dissociation between self-rated cognitive function and actual performance among individuals experiencing burnout.

  17. Chinese preservice teachers’ professional identity links with education program performance: The roles of task value belief and learning motivations

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Yan eZhang

    2016-04-01

    Full Text Available AbstractProfessional identity is a key issue spanning the entirety of teachers’ career development. Despite the abundance of existing research examining professional identity, its link with occupation-related behavior at the primary career stage (i.e., GPA in preservice education and the potential process that underlies this association is still not fully understood. This study explored the professional identity of Chinese preservice teachers, and its links with task value belief, intrinsic learning motivation, extrinsic learning motivation, and performance in the education program. Grade-point average (GPA of courses (both subject and pedagogy courses was examined as an indicator of performance, and questionnaires were used to measure the remaining variables. Data from 606 preservice teachers in the first three years of a teacher-training program indicated that: (1 variables in this research were all significantly correlated with each other, except the correlation between intrinsic learning motivation and program performance; (2 professional identity was positively linked to task value belief, intrinsic and extrinsic learning motivations, and program performance in a structural equation model (SEM; (3 task value belief was positively linked to intrinsic and extrinsic learning motivation; (4 higher extrinsic (but not intrinsic learning motivation was associated with increased program performance; and (5 task value belief and extrinsic learning motivation were significant mediators in the model.

  18. Core Self-Evaluations as Causes of Satisfaction: The Mediating Role of Seeking Task Complexity

    Science.gov (United States)

    Srivastava, Abhishek; Locke, Edwin A.; Judge, Timothy A.; Adams, John W.

    2010-01-01

    This study examined the mediating role of task complexity in the relationship between core self-evaluations (CSE) and satisfaction. In Study 1, eighty three undergraduate business students worked on a strategic decision-making simulation. The simulated environment enabled us to verify the temporal sequence of variables, use an objective measure of…

  19. Effect of the Enabling Perception of Costing Systems by Managers in the Performance of their Tasks

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Guilherme Eduardo de Souza

    2017-12-01

    Full Text Available The goal of this study is to analyze the effect of the enabling perception of costing systems by managers in the performance of their tasks, mediated by the intensity in of use of these costing systems and the level of psychological empowerment. The research was carried out through a survey of 62 companies listed in the Perfil das Empresas com Projetos Aprovados ou em Implantação na Zona Franca de Manaus Profile of Companies, in 2014. With a view to analyzing the hypotheses replicated from Mahama’s and Cheng’s (2013 study, the Structural Equations Modeling technique wasused. The research results show that the managers’ enabling perception of costing systems does not affect their  intensity of use, but it impacts on psychological empowerment, and this is directly reflected in the performance of tasks, indicating that the greater the empowerment, the better manager performance will be. It isconcluded that the model partially supports the relationships delineated and that the antecedents related to the costing systems require further study.

  20. How different types of participant payments alter task performance

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Gary L. Brase

    2009-08-01

    Full Text Available Researchers typically use incentives (such as money or course credit in order to obtain participants who engage in the specific behaviors of interest to the researcher. There is, however, little understanding or agreement on the effects of different types and levels of incentives used. Some results in the domain of statistical reasoning suggest that performance differences --- previously deemed theoretically important --- may actually be due to differences in incentive types across studies. 704 participants completed one of five variants of a statistical reasoning task, for which they received either course credit, flat fee payment, or performance-based payment incentives. Successful task completion was more frequent with performance-based incentives than with either of the other incentive types. Performance on moderately difficult tasks (compared to very easy and very hard tasks was most sensitive to incentives. These results can help resolve existing debates about inconsistent findings, guide more accurate comparisons across studies, and be applied beyond research settings.

  1. A focus on polarity: Investigating the role of orientation cues in mediating student performance on mRNA synthesis tasks in an introductory cell and molecular biology course.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Olimpo, Jeffrey T; Quijas, Daniel A; Quintana, Anita M

    2017-11-01

    The central dogma has served as a foundational model for information flow, exchange, and storage in the biological sciences for several decades. Despite its continued importance, however, recent research suggests that novices in the domain possess several misconceptions regarding the aforementioned processes, including those pertaining specifically to the formation of messenger ribonucleic acid (mRNA) transcripts. In the present study, we sought to expand upon these observations through exploration of the influence of orientation cues on students' aptitude at synthesizing mRNAs from provided deoxyribonucleic acid (DNA) template strands. Data indicated that participants (n = 45) were proficient at solving tasks of this nature when the DNA template strand and the mRNA molecule were represented in an antiparallel orientation. In contrast, participants' performance decreased significantly on items in which the mRNA was depicted in a parallel orientation relative to the DNA template strand. Furthermore, participants' Grade Point Average, self-reported confidence in understanding the transcriptional process, and spatial ability were found to mediate their performance on the mRNA synthesis tasks. Collectively, these data reaffirm the need for future research and pedagogical interventions designed to enhance students' comprehension of the central dogma in a manner that makes transparent its relevance to real-world scientific phenomena. © 2017 by The International Union of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, 45(6):501-508, 2017. © 2017 The International Union of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology.

  2. The Effect of Cerebellar Transcranial Direct Current Stimulation on A Throwing Task Depends on Individual Level of Task Performance.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mizuguchi, Nobuaki; Katayama, Takashi; Kanosue, Kazuyuki

    2018-02-10

    The effect of cerebellar transcranial direct current stimulation (tDCS) on motor performance remains controversial. Some studies suggest that the effect of tDCS depends upon task-difficulty and individual level of task performance. Here, we investigated whether the effect of cerebellar tDCS on the motor performance depends upon the individual's level of performance. Twenty-four naïve participants practiced dart throwing while receiving a 2-mA cerebellar tDCS for 20 min under three stimulus conditions (anodal-, cathodal-, and sham-tDCS) on separate days with a double-blind, counter-balanced cross-over design. Task performance was assessed by measuring the distance between the center of the bull's eye and the dart's position. Although task performance tended to improve throughout the practice under all stimulus conditions, improvement within a given day was not significant as compared to the first no-stimulus block. In addition, improvement did not differ among stimulation conditions. However, the magnitude of improvement was associated with an individual's level of task performance only under cathodal tDCS condition (p performance improvement only for the sub-group of participants with lower performance levels as compared to that with sham-tDCS (p task performance. Thus, cerebellar tDCS would facilitate learning of a complex motor skill task only in a subset of individuals. Copyright © 2017 IBRO. Published by Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  3. Performance in complex motor tasks deteriorates in hyperthermic humans

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Piil, Jacob Feder; Lundbye-Jensen, Jesper; Trangmar, Steven J

    2017-01-01

    -motor tracking performance was reduced by 10.7 ± 6.5% following exercise-induced hyperthermia when integrated in the multipart protocol and 4.4 ± 5.7% when tested separately (bothP 1.3% (P math tasks...... of information or decision-making prior to responding. We hypothesized that divergences could relate to task complexity and developed a protocol consisting of 1) simple motor task [TARGET_pinch], 2) complex motor task [Visuo-motor tracking], 3) simple math task [MATH_type], 4) combined motor-math task [MATH...

  4. Task dynamics in self-organising task groups : expertise, motivational, and performance differences of specialists and generalists

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Zoethout, Kees; Jager, Wander; Molleman, Eric

    Multi-agent simulation is applied to explore how different types of task variety cause workgroups to change their task allocation accordingly. We studied two groups, generalists and specialists. We hypothesised that the performance of the specialists would decrease when task variety increases. The

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2015-01-01

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

  6. Administrative Task Performance by Heads of Senior High Schools ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    This study aimed at examining the administrative task performance of heads of senior high schools (SHS) in Ghana from the organising perspective. The study hypothesized that there is no statistically significant difference in the compliance level of organising as an administrative task performance by heads in the rural and ...

  7. How age affects memory task performance in clinically normal hearing persons.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vercammen, Charlotte; Goossens, Tine; Wouters, Jan; van Wieringen, Astrid

    2017-05-01

    The main objective of this study is to investigate memory task performance in different age groups, irrespective of hearing status. Data are collected on a short-term memory task (WAIS-III Digit Span forward) and two working memory tasks (WAIS-III Digit Span backward and the Reading Span Test). The tasks are administered to young (20-30 years, n = 56), middle-aged (50-60 years, n = 47), and older participants (70-80 years, n = 16) with normal hearing thresholds. All participants have passed a cognitive screening task (Montreal Cognitive Assessment (MoCA)). Young participants perform significantly better than middle-aged participants, while middle-aged and older participants perform similarly on the three memory tasks. Our data show that older clinically normal hearing persons perform equally well on the memory tasks as middle-aged persons. However, even under optimal conditions of preserved sensory processing, changes in memory performance occur. Based on our data, these changes set in before middle age.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2018-01-01

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

  9. Comparison of precision and speed in laparoscopic and robot-assisted surgical task performance.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zihni, Ahmed; Gerull, William D; Cavallo, Jaime A; Ge, Tianjia; Ray, Shuddhadeb; Chiu, Jason; Brunt, L Michael; Awad, Michael M

    2018-03-01

    Robotic platforms have the potential advantage of providing additional dexterity and precision to surgeons while performing complex laparoscopic tasks, especially for those in training. Few quantitative evaluations of surgical task performance comparing laparoscopic and robotic platforms among surgeons of varying experience levels have been done. We compared measures of quality and efficiency of Fundamentals of Laparoscopic Surgery task performance on these platforms in novices and experienced laparoscopic and robotic surgeons. Fourteen novices, 12 expert laparoscopic surgeons (>100 laparoscopic procedures performed, no robotics experience), and five expert robotic surgeons (>25 robotic procedures performed) performed three Fundamentals of Laparoscopic Surgery tasks on both laparoscopic and robotic platforms: peg transfer (PT), pattern cutting (PC), and intracorporeal suturing. All tasks were repeated three times by each subject on each platform in a randomized order. Mean completion times and mean errors per trial (EPT) were calculated for each task on both platforms. Results were compared using Student's t-test (P task performance was slower on the robotic platform compared with laparoscopy. In comparisons of expert laparoscopists performing tasks on the laparoscopic platform and expert robotic surgeons performing tasks on the robotic platform, expert robotic surgeons demonstrated fewer errors during the PC task (P = 0.009). Robotic assistance provided a reduction in errors at all experience levels for some laparoscopic tasks, but no benefit in the speed of task performance. Robotic assistance may provide some benefit in precision of surgical task performance. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  10. Game elements improve performance in a working memory training task

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Manuel Ninaus

    2015-02-01

    Full Text Available The utilization of game elements in a non-game context is currently used in a vast range of different domains. However, research on game elements’ effects in cognitive tasks is still sparse. Thus, in this study we implemented three game elements, namely, progress bar, level indicator, and a thematic setting, in a working memory training task. We evaluated the impact of game elements on user performance and perceived state of flow when compared to a conventional version of the task. Participants interacting with game elements showed higher scores in the working memory training task than participants from a control group who completed the working memory training task without the game elements. Moreover, game elements facilitated the individuals’ performance closer to their maximum working memory capacity. Finally, the perceived flow did not differ between the two groups, which indicates that game elements can induce better performance without changing the perception of being “in the zone”, that is without an increase in anxiety or boredom. This empirical study indicates that certain game elements can improve the performance and efficiency in a working memory task by increasing users’ ability and willingness to train at their optimal performance level. 

  11. Continuous performance task in ADHD: Is reaction time variability a key measure?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Levy, Florence; Pipingas, Andrew; Harris, Elizabeth V; Farrow, Maree; Silberstein, Richard B

    2018-01-01

    To compare the use of the Continuous Performance Task (CPT) reaction time variability (intraindividual variability or standard deviation of reaction time), as a measure of vigilance in attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), and stimulant medication response, utilizing a simple CPT X-task vs an A-X-task. Comparative analyses of two separate X-task vs A-X-task data sets, and subgroup analyses of performance on and off medication were conducted. The CPT X-task reaction time variability had a direct relationship to ADHD clinician severity ratings, unlike the CPT A-X-task. Variability in X-task performance was reduced by medication compared with the children's unmedicated performance, but this effect did not reach significance. When the coefficient of variation was applied, severity measures and medication response were significant for the X-task, but not for the A-X-task. The CPT-X-task is a useful clinical screening test for ADHD and medication response. In particular, reaction time variability is related to default mode interference. The A-X-task is less useful in this regard.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2015-08-19

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

  13. Individual versus Interactive Task-Based Performance through Voice-Based Computer-Mediated Communication

    Science.gov (United States)

    Granena, Gisela

    2016-01-01

    Interaction is a necessary condition for second language (L2) learning (Long, 1980, 1996). Research in computer-mediated communication has shown that interaction opportunities make learners pay attention to form in a variety of ways that promote L2 learning. This research has mostly investigated text-based rather than voice-based interaction. The…

  14. Task-irrelevant auditory feedback facilitates motor performance in musicians

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Virginia eConde

    2012-05-01

    Full Text Available An efficient and fast auditory–motor network is a basic resource for trained musicians due to the importance of motor anticipation of sound production in musical performance. When playing an instrument, motor performance always goes along with the production of sounds and the integration between both modalities plays an essential role in the course of musical training. The aim of the present study was to investigate the role of task-irrelevant auditory feedback during motor performance in musicians using a serial reaction time task (SRTT. Our hypothesis was that musicians, due to their extensive auditory–motor practice routine during musical training, have a superior performance and learning capabilities when receiving auditory feedback during SRTT relative to musicians performing the SRTT without any auditory feedback. Here we provide novel evidence that task-irrelevant auditory feedback is capable to reinforce SRTT performance but not learning, a finding that might provide further insight into auditory-motor integration in musicians on a behavioral level.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lemay, Moira

    1989-01-01

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

  16. Can tutoring improve performance on a reasoning task under deadline conditions?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Osman, Magda

    2007-03-01

    The present study examined the effectiveness of a tutoring technique that has been used to identify and address participants' misunderstandings in Wason's selection task. In particular, the study investigated whether the technique would lead to improvements in performance when the task was presented in a deadline format (a condition in which time restrictions are imposed). In Experiment 1, the effects of tutoring on performance were compared in free time (conditions in which no time restrictions are imposed) and deadline task formats. In Experiment 2, improvements in performance were studied in deadline task formats, in which the tutoring and test phases were separated by an interval of 1 day. The results suggested that tutoring improved performance on the selection task under deadline and in free time conditions. Additionally, the study showed that participants made errors because they had misinterpreted the task. With tutoring, they were able to modify their initial misunderstandings.

  17. The Effect of Task Type and Pre-task Planning Condition on the Accuracy of Intermediate EFL Learners' Writing Performance

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Seyeed Mohammad Alavi

    2012-05-01

    Full Text Available Task-based language teaching, which requires learners to transact tasks resembling their real life language needs, demands language learners to perform planning at different stages of their learning. Since various types of tasks can be used in task-based instruction, the present study examined the effect of task types and various participatory structures during pre-task planning on the quality of learners' writing performance, (i.e., accuracy. Towards this end, 120 intermediate EFL students were randomly assigned to 3 experimental groups and one control group. While the experimental groups were subjected to different pre-task planning conditions, (i.e., individual, pair, and group, the control group performed tasks without any planning. During the treatment, they experienced task modeling, presentation and completion. A factorial design was followed in the present study, and the collected data were analyzed through ANOVAs that revealed task type and pre-task planning condition influenced the writing accuracy of the participants in a way that resulted in greater accuracy in the decision-making task in the experimental groups, thereby ensuring the effectiveness of the treatment in mitigating the long-standing problem of EFL learners in achieving higher levels of accuracy when a specific task type is concerned.

  18. Math anxiety and math performance in children: The mediating roles of working memory and math self-concept.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Justicia-Galiano, M José; Martín-Puga, M Eva; Linares, Rocío; Pelegrina, Santiago

    2017-12-01

    Numerous studies, most of them involving adolescents and adults, have evidenced a moderate negative relationship between math anxiety and math performance. There are, however, a limited number of studies that have addressed the mechanisms underlying this relation. This study aimed to investigate the role of two possible mediational mechanisms between math anxiety and math performance. Specifically, we sought to test the simultaneous mediating role of working memory and math self-concept. A total of 167 children aged 8-12 years participated in this study. Children completed a set of questionnaires used to assess math and trait anxiety, math self-concept as well as measures of math fluency and math problem-solving. Teachers were asked to rate each student's math achievement. As measures of working memory, two backward span tasks were administered to the children. A series of multiple mediation analyses were conducted. Results indicated that both mediators (working memory and math self-concept) contributed to explaining the relationship between math anxiety and math achievement. Results suggest that working memory and self-concept could be worth considering when designing interventions aimed at helping students with math anxiety. Longitudinal designs could also be used to better understand the mediational mechanisms that may explain the relationship between math anxiety and math performance. © 2017 The British Psychological Society.

  19. Task complexity and task, goal, and reward interdependence in group performance management : A prescriptive model

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    van Vijfeijken, H.; Kleingeld, A.; van Tuijl, H.; Algera, J.A.; Thierry, Hk.

    2002-01-01

    A prescriptive model on how to design effective combinations of goal setting and contingent rewards for group performance management is presented. The model incorporates the constructs task complexity, task interdependence, goal interdependence, and reward interdependence and specifies optimal fit

  20. Children's difficulty with true belief tasks: Competence deficit or performance problem?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Oktay-Gür, Nese; Rakoczy, Hannes

    2017-09-01

    According to the standard picture of explicit theory of mind (ToM) development, children begin to (explicitly) ascribe beliefs to others and themselves from around age 4. The empirical basis of this picture comes from numerous studies consistently showing that children master verbal false belief (FB) tasks from around age 4 while children much younger have no difficulty in mastering structurally analogous true belief (TB) tasks. The standard picture, though, has come under serious attack from recent studies using TB tasks with wider age ranges. These studies have found that, paradoxically, children begin to fail TB tasks once they master FB tasks. Such findings cast doubt on the standard picture and suggest, instead, that FB tasks may be solved by much simpler strategies than proper belief reasoning. In the present study, we tested for the development of FB and TB performance in comprehensive and systematic ways. In particular, we tested the competing predictions of competence accounts (according to which TB failure reflects lack of conceptual competence) versus performance limitation accounts (according to which the standard picture is true yet children from around age 4 fail TB tasks due to performance factors). Studies 1 and 2 showed that performance in a variety of novel TB tasks showed a clear U-shaped curve, with children until age 3 and from age 10 performing competently and children in between failing, with strong negative correlations between TB and FB. Crucially, these patterns were found for various kinds of TB tasks, including those for which existing competence limitation accounts would not even predict any difficulty. Study 3, therefore, directly tested performance limitation accounts in terms of pragmatic and related factors and found that these patterns (failure in TB and negative TB-FB correlations) disappear once the relevant performance factors have been removed from the TB tasks. Taken together, these findings suggest that previous TB findings

  1. Circadian Effects on Simple Components of Complex Task Performance

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2015-01-01

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

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bloomberg, J. J.; Arzeno, N. H.; Buxton, R. E.; Feiveson, A. H.; Kofman, I. S.; Lee, S. M. C.; Miller, C. A.; Mulavara, A. P.; Platts, S. H.; Peters, B. T.; hide

    2011-01-01

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

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    Moore, Alex M; Ashcraft, Mark H

    2015-07-01

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

  4. Distraction during learning with hypermedia: Difficult tasks help to keep task goals on track

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Katharina eScheiter

    2014-03-01

    Full Text Available In educational hypermedia environments, students are often confronted with potential sources of distraction arising from additional information that, albeit interesting, is unrelated to their current task goal. The paper investigates the conditions under which distraction occurs and hampers performance. Based on theories of volitional action control it was hypothesized that interesting information, especially if related to a pending goal, would interfere with task performance only when working on easy, but not on difficult tasks. In Experiment 1, 66 students learned about probability theory using worked examples and solved corresponding test problems, whose task difficulty was manipulated. As a second factor, the presence of interesting information unrelated to the primary task was varied. Results showed that students solved more easy than difficult probability problems correctly. However, the presence of interesting, but task-irrelevant information did not interfere with performance. In Experiment 2, 68 students again engaged in example-based learning and problem solving in the presence of task-irrelevant information. Problem-solving difficulty was varied as a first factor. Additionally, the presence of a pending goal related to the task-irrelevant information was manipulated. As expected, problem-solving performance declined when a pending goal was present during working on easy problems, whereas no interference was observed for difficult problems. Moreover, the presence of a pending goal reduced the time on task-relevant information and increased the time on task-irrelevant information while working on easy tasks. However, as revealed by mediation analyses these changes in overt information processing behavior did not explain the decline in problem-solving performance. As an alternative explanation it is suggested that goal conflicts resulting from pending goals claim cognitive resources, which are then no longer available for learning and

  5. Testing the Limits of Optimizing Dual-Task Performance in Younger and Older Adults

    Science.gov (United States)

    Strobach, Tilo; Frensch, Peter; Müller, Herrmann Josef; Schubert, Torsten

    2012-01-01

    Impaired dual-task performance in younger and older adults can be improved with practice. Optimal conditions even allow for a (near) elimination of this impairment in younger adults. However, it is unknown whether such (near) elimination is the limit of performance improvements in older adults. The present study tests this limit in older adults under conditions of (a) a high amount of dual-task training and (b) training with simplified component tasks in dual-task situations. The data showed that a high amount of dual-task training in older adults provided no evidence for an improvement of dual-task performance to the optimal dual-task performance level achieved by younger adults. However, training with simplified component tasks in dual-task situations exclusively in older adults provided a similar level of optimal dual-task performance in both age groups. Therefore through applying a testing the limits approach, we demonstrated that older adults improved dual-task performance to the same level as younger adults at the end of training under very specific conditions. PMID:22408613

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fischer, Rico; Gottschalk, Caroline; Dreisbach, Gesine

    2014-01-01

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

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2016-01-01

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

  8. Perceived control in rhesus monkeys (Macaca mulatta) - Enhanced video-task performance

    Science.gov (United States)

    Washburn, David A.; Hopkins, William D.; Rumbaugh, Duane M.

    1991-01-01

    This investigation was designed to determine whether perceived control effects found in humans extend to rhesus monkeys (Macaca mulatta) tested in a video-task format, using a computer-generated menu program, SELECT. Choosing one of the options in SELECT resulted in presentation of five trials of a corresponding task and subsequent return to the menu. In Experiments 1-3, the animals exhibited stable, meaningful response patterns in this task (i.e., they made choices). In Experiment 4, performance on tasks that were selected by the animals significantly exceeded performance on identical tasks when assigned by the experimenter under comparable conditions (e.g., time of day, order, variety). The reliable and significant advantage for performance on selected tasks, typically found in humans, suggests that rhesus monkeys were able to perceive the availability of choices.

  9. The effects of voice and manual control mode on dual task performance

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wickens, C. D.; Zenyuh, J.; Culp, V.; Marshak, W.

    1986-01-01

    Two fundamental principles of human performance, compatibility and resource competition, are combined with two structural dichotomies in the human information processing system, manual versus voice output, and left versus right cerebral hemisphere, in order to predict the optimum combination of voice and manual control with either hand, for time-sharing performance of a dicrete and continuous task. Eight right handed male subjected performed a discrete first-order tracking task, time-shared with an auditorily presented Sternberg Memory Search Task. Each task could be controlled by voice, or by the left or right hand, in all possible combinations except for a dual voice mode. When performance was analyzed in terms of a dual-task decrement from single task control conditions, the following variables influenced time-sharing efficiency in diminishing order of magnitude, (1) the modality of control, (discrete manual control of tracking was superior to discrete voice control of tracking and the converse was true with the memory search task), (2) response competition, (performance was degraded when both tasks were responded manually), (3) hemispheric competition, (performance degraded whenever two tasks were controlled by the left hemisphere) (i.e., voice or right handed control). The results confirm the value of predictive models invoice control implementation.

  10. The Relation between Sustainable Innovation Strategy and Financial Performance Mediated By Environmental Performance

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Hariyati Hariyati

    2015-06-01

    Full Text Available This study aims to examine the relationship of sustainable innovation strategy and financial performance through the mediation environmental performance. The hypothesis in this study is sustainable innovation strategy affect the financial performance which is mediated by environmental performance. This study is quantitative research in the explanatory level. The population of this study is all the manufacturer companies in East Java. The data is collected through questionnaire. The unit of analysis is a business unit. The respondent of this study is the manager of a business unit manufacturing company in East Java. The results showed that the environmental performance mediates partially the relation between sustainable innovation strategy and financial performance.

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

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

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

    1986-01-01

    In a plant that employs remote handling techniques for equipment maintenance, operators perform maintenance tasks primarily by using the information from television systems. The efficiency of the television system has a significant impact on remote maintenance task performance. High-definition television (HDTV) transmits a video image with more than twice the number of horizontal scan lines as standard-resolution television (1125 for HDTV to 525 for standard-resolution NTSC television). The added scan lines dramatically improve the resolution of images on the HDTV monitors. This paper describes experiments designed to evaluate the impact of HDTV on the performance of typical remote tasks. The experiments described in this paper compared the performance of four operators using HDTV with their performance while using other television systems. The experiments included four television systems: (a) high-definition color television, (b) high-definition monochromatic television, (c) standard-resolution monochromatic television, and (d) standard-resolution stereoscopic monochromatic television

  12. Task-based incidental vocabulary learning in L2 Arabic: The role of proficiency and task performance

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ayman A. Mohamed

    2016-03-01

    Full Text Available This study tests the claim that word learning in a second language are contingent upon a task’s involvement load (i.e. the amount of need, search, and evaluation it imposes, as proposed by Laufer and Hulstijn (2001. Fifty-three English-speaking learners of Arabic were assigned to one of three vocabulary learning tasks that varied in the degree of involvement: reading comprehension with glosses (low, fill-in-the-gap task (medium, and sentence writing (high. Ten words, selected based on a pretest, were targeted in the tasks. Results showed a main effect of task, with the sentence writing task yielding the highest rates of vocabulary learning, followed by the gap-fill task, and finally the reading comprehension task. A significant correlation was found between accuracy of performance across participants and their subsequent vocabulary acquisition in the immediate posttest. Within groups, only the performance of the writing group correlated significantly with their posttest scores. Results of the present study validate the hypothesis and point to multiple factors at play in incidental vocabulary acquisition. The study provides further arguments to refine the hypothesis and implement pedagogical practices that accommodate incidental learning in foreign language settings.

  13. The Applicability of Rhythm-Motor Tasks to a New Dual Task Paradigm for Older Adults

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Soo Ji Kim

    2017-12-01

    potential of applying rhythm-motor tasks to dual task methodology. This study presents how rhythm-motor tasks demand cognitive control at different levels than those engaged by cognitive-motor tasks. It also indicates how these new dual tasks can effectively mediate dual task performance indicative of fall risks, while requiring increased cognitive resources but facilitating gait control as a compensatory strategy to maintain gait stability.

  14. The Effect of Focus on Form and Task Complexity on L2 Learners' Oral Task Performance

    Science.gov (United States)

    Salimi, Asghar

    2015-01-01

    Second Language learners' oral task performance has been one of interesting and research generating areas of investigations in the field of second language acquisition specially, task-based language teaching and learning. The main purpose of the present study is to investigate the effect of focus on form and task complexity on L2 learners' oral…

  15. Age-related differences in dual task performance: A cross-sectional study on women.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brustio, Paolo R; Magistro, Daniele; Rabaglietti, Emanuela; Liubicich, Monica E

    2017-02-01

    Simultaneous performances of motor and attention-demanding tasks are common in activities of everyday life. The present cross-sectional study examined the changes and age-related differences on mobility performance with an additional cognitive or motor task, and evaluated the relative dual-task cost (DTC) on the motor performance in young, middle-aged and older women. A total of 30 young (mean age 25.12 ± 3.00 years), 30 middle-aged (mean age 47.82 ± 5.06 years) and 30 older women (mean age 72.74 ± 5.95 years) were recruited. Participants carried out: (i) single task: Timed Up & Go Test; (ii) cognitive dual-task: Timed Up & Go Test while counting backwards by three; (iii) manual dual-task: Timed Up & Go Test while carrying a glass of water. A repeated measures anova with between-factor as age groups and within-factor as tasks was carried out to assess the effect of aging on the performance of mobility tasks. DTC was calculated as ([performance in single-task - performance in dual-task] / performance in single task) × 100%. One-way ancova were carried out to compare the DTC among the three age groups. A significant interaction between age groups and task (F 4,172  = 6.716, P performance under dual-task condition compared with young and middle-aged groups. Furthermore, DTC differences in cognitive task were observed in older women compared with younger and middle-aged women (F 2,86  = 7.649, P task. Dual-task conditions might affect mobility performance differently across the lifespan, and could be particularly challenging in older women. Geriatr Gerontol Int 2017; 17: 315-321. © 2015 Japan Geriatrics Society.

  16. Using Performance Task Data to Improve Instruction

    Science.gov (United States)

    Abbott, Amy L.; Wren, Douglas G.

    2016-01-01

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

  17. Pointing Device Performance in Steering Tasks.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Senanayake, Ransalu; Goonetilleke, Ravindra S

    2016-06-01

    Use of touch-screen-based interactions is growing rapidly. Hence, knowing the maneuvering efficacy of touch screens relative to other pointing devices is of great importance in the context of graphical user interfaces. Movement time, accuracy, and user preferences of four pointing device settings were evaluated on a computer with 14 participants aged 20.1 ± 3.13 years. It was found that, depending on the difficulty of the task, the optimal settings differ for ballistic and visual control tasks. With a touch screen, resting the arm increased movement time for steering tasks. When both performance and comfort are considered, whether to use a mouse or a touch screen for person-computer interaction depends on the steering difficulty. Hence, a input device should be chosen based on the application, and should be optimized to match the graphical user interface. © The Author(s) 2016.

  18. Manipulating perceptual parameters in a continuous performance task.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shalev, Nir; Humphreys, Glyn; Demeyere, Nele

    2018-02-01

    Sustained attention (SA) is among the most studied faculties of human cognition, and thought to be crucial for many aspects of behavior. Measuring SA often relies on performance on a continuous, low-demanding task. Such continuous performance tasks (CPTs) have many variations, and sustained attention is typically estimated based on variability in reaction times. While relying on reaction times may be useful in some cases, it can pose a challenge when working with clinical populations. To increase interpersonal variability in task parameters that do not rely on speed, researchers have increased demands for memory and response inhibition. These approaches, however, may be confounded when used to assess populations that suffer from multiple cognitive deficits. In the current study, we propose a new approach for increasing task variability by increasing the attentional demands. In order to do so, we created a new variation of a CPT - a masked version, where inattention is more likely to cause misidentifying a target. After establishing that masking indeed decreases target detection, we further investigated which task parameter may influence response biases. To do so, we contrasted two versions of the CPT with different target/distractor ratio. We then established how perceptual parameters can be controlled independently in a CPT. Following the experimental manipulations, we tested the MCCPT with aging controls and chronic stroke patients to assure the task can be used with target populations. The results confirm the MCCPT as a task providing high sensitivity without relying on reaction speed, and feasible for patients.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2017-04-01

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

  20. Tasks of the Shipboard Independent Duty Hospital Corpsman. Task Training Adequacy and Performance Frequency.

    Science.gov (United States)

    1987-11-01

    Frequency List E-1 Appendix F - Submarine Quick Reference Task Frequency List . F-1 0 Appendix G - Mean Performance...j~~~~~~, -,,-p.r.. ... .0 -. %... h. • - III APPENDIX E I SURFACE SHIP QUICK REFERENCE TASK FREQUENCY LIST A Q N E Dl It T T E A E H HI K I L L L1 L...34. - - - ----------------------------------------- ---.--- ---------------------- - - E-4 APPENDIX F " SUBMARINE QUICK REFERENCE TASK FREQUENCY LIST (N 1l0) "% R 0 W 4. A Q N E D R T T

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2013-01-01

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

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2015-01-01

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

  3. The Effect of Prior Task Success on Older Adults' Memory Performance: Examining the Influence of Different Types of Task Success.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Geraci, Lisa; Hughes, Matthew L; Miller, Tyler M; De Forrest, Ross L

    2016-01-01

    Negative aging stereotypes can lead older adults to perform poorly on memory tests. Yet, memory performance can be improved if older adults have a single successful experience on a cognitive test prior to participating in a memory experiment (Geraci & Miller, 2013, Psychology and Aging, 28, 340-345). The current study examined the effects of different types of prior task experience on subsequent memory performance. Before participating in a verbal free recall experiment, older adults in Experiment 1 successfully completed either a verbal or a visual cognitive task or no task. In Experiment 2, they successfully completed either a motor task or no task before participating in the free recall experiment. Results from Experiment 1 showed that relative to control (no prior task), participants who had prior success, either on a verbal or a visual task, had better subsequent recall performance. Experiment 2 showed that prior success on a motor task, however, did not lead to a later memory advantage relative to control. These findings demonstrate that older adults' memory can be improved by a successful prior task experience so long as that experience is in a cognitive domain.

  4. The influence of principal managerial task performance on ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Poor performance of managerial tasks culminates declining staff productivity and thus deteriorating students academic performance. Secondary school students performance in most public examinations are not satisfactory in most states in Nigeria. Hence, this study investigate the extent to which secondary school principal ...

  5. Personal Conflict Impairs Performance on an Unrelated Self-Control Task: Lingering Costs of Uncertainty and Conflict.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Alquist, Jessica L; Baumeister, Roy F; McGregor, Ian; Core, Tammy J; Benjamin, Ilil; Tice, Dianne M

    2018-01-01

    People have the ability to make important choices in their lives, but deliberating about these choices can have costs. The present study was designed to test the hypothesis that writing about conflicted personal goals and values (conflict condition) would impair self-control on an unrelated subsequent task as compared to writing about clear personal goals and values (clarity condition). Personal conflict activates the behavioral inhibition system (BIS; Hirsh, Mar, & Peterson, 2012), which may make it harder for participants to successfully execute self-control. In this large ( N =337), pre-registered study participants in the conflict condition performed worse on anagrams than participants in the clarity condition, and the effect of condition on anagram performance was mediated by a subjective uncertainty measure of BIS activation. This suggests that BIS activation leads to poor self-control. Moreover, given that conflict is inherent in the exercise of self-control, results point to BIS activation as a mechanism for why initial acts of self-control impair self-control on subsequent, unrelated tasks.

  6. Effects of Task Performance and Task Complexity on the Validity of Computational Models of Attention

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Koning, L. de; Maanen, P.P. van; Dongen, K. van

    2008-01-01

    Computational models of attention can be used as a component of decision support systems. For accurate support, a computational model of attention has to be valid and robust. The effects of task performance and task complexity on the validity of three different computational models of attention were

  7. Performance Trends During Sleep Deprivation on a Tilt-Based Control Task.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bolkhovsky, Jeffrey B; Ritter, Frank E; Chon, Ki H; Qin, Michael

    2018-07-01

    Understanding human behavior under the effects of sleep deprivation allows for the mitigation of risk due to reduced performance. To further this goal, this study investigated the effects of short-term sleep deprivation using a tilt-based control device and examined whether existing user models accurately predict targeting performance. A task in which the user tilts a surface to roll a ball into a target was developed to examine motor performance. A model was built to predict human performance for this task under various levels of sleep deprivation. Every 2 h, 10 subjects completed the task until they reached 24 h of wakefulness. Performance measurements of this task, which were based on Fitts' law, included movement time, task throughput, and time intercept. The model predicted significant performance decrements over the 24-h period with an increase in movement time (R2 = 0.61), a decrease in throughput (R2 = 0.57), and an increase in time intercept (R2 = 0.60). However, it was found that in experimental trials there was no significant change in movement time (R2 = 0.11), throughput (R2 = 0.15), or time intercept (R2 = 0.27). The results found were unexpected as performance decrement is frequently reported during sleep deprivation. These findings suggest a reexamination of the initial thought of sleep loss leading to a decrement in all aspects of performance.Bolkovsky JB, Ritter FE, Chon KH, Qin M. Performance trends during sleep deprivation on a tilt-based control task. Aerosp Med Hum Perform. 2018; 89(7):626-633.

  8. Sleep restriction during simulated wildfire suppression: effect on physical task performance.

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2015-01-01

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

  9. Virtual street-crossing performance in persons with multiple sclerosis: Feasibility and task performance characteristics.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stratton, M E; Pilutti, L A; Crowell, J A; Kaczmarski, H; Motl, R W

    2017-01-02

    Multiple sclerosis (MS) is a neurological disease that commonly results in physical and cognitive dysfunction. Accordingly, MS might impact the ability to safely cross the street. The purpose of this study was to examine the feasibility of a simulated street-crossing task in persons with MS and to determine differences in street-crossing performance between persons with MS and non-MS controls. 26 participants with MS (median Expanded Disability Status Scale [EDSS] score = 3.5) and 19 controls completed 40 trials of a virtual street-crossing task. There were 2 crossing conditions (i.e., no distraction and phone conversation), and participants performed 20 trials per condition. Participants were instructed that the goal of the task was to cross the street successfully (i.e., without being hit be a vehicle). The primary outcome was task feasibility, assessed as completion and adverse events. Secondary outcomes were measures of street-crossing performance. Overall, the simulated street-crossing task was feasible (i.e., 90% completion, no adverse events) in participants with MS. Participants with MS waited longer and were less attentive to traffic before entering the street compared with controls (all P .05). A virtual street-crossing task is feasible for studying street-crossing behavior in persons with mild MS and most individuals with moderate MS. Virtual street-crossing performance is impaired in persons with MS compared to controls; however, persons with MS do not appear to be more vulnerable to a distracting condition. The virtual reality environment presents a safe and useful setting for understanding pedestrian behavior in persons with MS.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2011-01-01

    The functional task test is a multi-disciplinary study investigating how space-flight induced changes to physiological systems impacts functional task performance. Impairment of neuromuscular function would be expected to negatively affect functional performance of crewmembers following exposure to microgravity. This presentation reports the results for muscle performance testing in crewmembers. Functional task performance will be presented in the abstract "Functional Task Test 1: sensory motor adaptations associated with postflight alternations in astronaut functional task performance." METHODS: Muscle performance measures were obtained in crewmembers before and after short-duration space flight aboard the Space Shuttle and long-duration International Space Station (ISS) missions. The battery of muscle performance tests included leg press and bench press measures of isometric force, isotonic power and total work. Knee extension was used for the measurement of central activation and maximal isometric force. Upper and lower body force steadiness control were measured on the bench press and knee extension machine, respectively. Tests were implemented 60 and 30 days before launch, on landing day (Shuttle crew only), and 6, 10 and 30 days after landing. Seven Space Shuttle crew and four ISS crew have completed the muscle performance testing to date. RESULTS: Preliminary results for Space Shuttle crew reveal significant reductions in the leg press performance metrics of maximal isometric force, power and total work on R+0 (pperformance metrics were observed in returning Shuttle crew and these adaptations are likely contributors to impaired functional tasks that are ambulatory in nature (See abstract Functional Task Test: 1). Interestingly, no significant changes in central activation capacity were detected. Therefore, impairments in muscle function in response to short-duration space flight are likely myocellular rather than neuromotor in nature.

  11. Consistency of performance of robot-assisted surgical tasks in virtual reality.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Suh, I H; Siu, K-C; Mukherjee, M; Monk, E; Oleynikov, D; Stergiou, N

    2009-01-01

    The purpose of this study was to investigate consistency of performance of robot-assisted surgical tasks in a virtual reality environment. Eight subjects performed two surgical tasks, bimanual carrying and needle passing, with both the da Vinci surgical robot and a virtual reality equivalent environment. Nonlinear analysis was utilized to evaluate consistency of performance by calculating the regularity and the amount of divergence in the movement trajectories of the surgical instrument tips. Our results revealed that movement patterns for both training tasks were statistically similar between the two environments. Consistency of performance as measured by nonlinear analysis could be an appropriate methodology to evaluate the complexity of the training tasks between actual and virtual environments and assist in developing better surgical training programs.

  12. Ability of aphasic individuals to perform numerical processing and calculation tasks

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Gabriela De Luccia

    2014-03-01

    Full Text Available Objective To compare performance on EC301 battery calculation task between aphasic subjects and normal controls of the same sex, age, and education. Method Thirty-two aphasic patients who had suffered a single left hemisphere stroke were evaluated. Forty-four healthy volunteers were also selected. All subjects underwent a comprehensive arithmetic battery to assess their numerical and calculation skills. Performances on numerical processing and calculation tasks were then analyzed. Results Aphasic individuals showed changes in their ability to perform numerical processing and calculation tasks that were not observed in the healthy population. Conclusion Compared with healthy subjects of the same age and education level, individuals with aphasia had difficulty performing various tasks that involved numerical processing and calculation.

  13. Three tasks for mediatization research

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Ekstrøm, Mats; Fornäs, Johan; Jansson, André

    2016-01-01

    Based on the interdisciplinary experience of a Swedish research committee, this article discusses critical conceptual issues raised by the current debate on mediatization – a concept that holds great potential to constitute a space for synthesized understandings of media-related social transforma......Based on the interdisciplinary experience of a Swedish research committee, this article discusses critical conceptual issues raised by the current debate on mediatization – a concept that holds great potential to constitute a space for synthesized understandings of media-related social...... that mediatization researchers have sometimes formulated too grand claims as to mediatization’s status as a unitary approach, a meta-theory or a paradigm. Such claims have led to problematic confusions around the concept and should be abandoned in favour of a more open agenda. In line with such a call for openness...

  14. Ramifications of single-port laparoscopic surgery: measuring differences in task performance using simulation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Conway, Nathan E; Romanelli, John R; Bush, Ron W; Seymour, Neal E

    2014-02-01

    Single-port laparoscopic surgery imposes unique psychomotor challenges. We used surgical simulation to define performance differences between surgeons with and without single-port clinical experience and examined whether a short course of training resulted in improved performance. Study participants were assigned to 3 groups: resident group (RES), experienced laparoscopic surgeons with (SP) and without (LAP) prior single-port laparoscopic experience. Participants performed the Fundamentals of Laparoscopic Surgery precision cutting task on a ProMIS trainer through conventional ports or with articulating instruments via a SILS Port (Covidien, Inc). Two iterations of each method were performed. Then, 6 residents performed 10 successive single-port iterations to assess the effect of practice on task performance. The SP group had faster task times for both laparoscopic (P = .0486) and single-port (P = .0238) methods. The LAP group had longer path lengths for the single-port task than for the laparoscopic task (P = .03). The RES group was slower (P = .0019), with longer path length (P = .0010) but with greater smoothness (P = .0186) on the single-port task than the conventional laparoscopic task. Resident performance task time (P = .005) and smoothness (P = .045) improved with successive iterations. Our data show that surgeons with clinical single-port surgery experience perform a simulated single-port surgical task better than inexperienced single-port surgeons. Furthermore, this performance is comparable to that achieved with conventional laparoscopic techniques. Performance of residents declined dramatically when confronted with the challenges of the single-port task but improved with practice. These results suggest a role for lab-based single-port training.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lee, Scott Weng Fai

    2013-01-01

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

  16. Identification of tasks performed by stroke patients using a mobility assistive device

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Hester, Todd; Sherrill, Delsey M; Hamel, Mathieu

    2006-01-01

    of these devices. In this study, we propose the use of wearable sensors to identify tasks performed by stroke patients with a mobility assistive device. Subjects performed ten tasks with a three-axis accelerometer attached to their ankle and a neural network was trained to identify the task being performed...... tasks associated with the use of a cane. Therefore, we envision that the methodology presented in this paper could be used to evaluate the use of a cane in the context of the task being performed........ Results from 15 stroke patients indicated that these motor tasks can be reliably identified with a median sensitivity of 90 % at a median specificity of 95%. These results indicate that it is possible to use a single module with a three-axis accelerometer attached to the ankle to reliably identify motor...

  17. Performance monitoring and analysis of task-based OpenMP.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Yi Ding

    Full Text Available OpenMP, a typical shared memory programming paradigm, has been extensively applied in high performance computing community due to the popularity of multicore architectures in recent years. The most significant feature of the OpenMP 3.0 specification is the introduction of the task constructs to express parallelism at a much finer level of detail. This feature, however, has posed new challenges for performance monitoring and analysis. In particular, task creation is separated from its execution, causing the traditional monitoring methods to be ineffective. This paper presents a mechanism to monitor task-based OpenMP programs with interposition and proposes two demonstration graphs for performance analysis as well. The results of two experiments are discussed to evaluate the overhead of monitoring mechanism and to verify the effects of demonstration graphs using the BOTS benchmarks.

  18. Computer-mediated communication and time pressure induce higher cardiovascular responses in the preparatory and execution phases of cooperative tasks.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Costa Ferrer, Raquel; Serrano Rosa, Miguel Ángel; Zornoza Abad, Ana; Salvador Fernández-Montejo, Alicia

    2010-11-01

    The cardiovascular (CV) response to social challenge and stress is associated with the etiology of cardiovascular diseases. New ways of communication, time pressure and different types of information are common in our society. In this study, the cardiovascular response to two different tasks (open vs. closed information) was examined employing different communication channels (computer-mediated vs. face-to-face) and with different pace control (self vs. external). Our results indicate that there was a higher CV response in the computer-mediated condition, on the closed information task and in the externally paced condition. These role of these factors should be considered when studying the consequences of social stress and their underlying mechanisms.

  19. Sleep restriction during simulated wildfire suppression: effect on physical task performance.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Grace Vincent

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

  20. Eysenck's Theory of Personality and the Role of Background Music in Cognitive Task Performance: A Mini-Review of Conflicting Findings and a New Perspective

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mats B. Küssner

    2017-11-01

    Full Text Available The question of whether background music is able to enhance cognitive task performance is of interest to scholars, educators, and stakeholders in business alike. Studies have shown that background music can have beneficial, detrimental or no effects on cognitive task performance. Extraversion—and its postulated underlying cause, cortical arousal—is regarded as an important factor influencing the outcome of such studies. According to Eysenck's theory of personality, extraverts' cortical arousal at rest is lower compared to that of introverts. Scholars have thus hypothesized that extraverts should benefit from background music in cognitive tasks, whereas introverts' performance should decline with music in the background. Reviewing studies that have considered extraversion as a mediator of the effect of background music on cognitive task performance, it is demonstrated that there is as much evidence in favor as there is against Eysenck's theory of personality. Further, revisiting Eysenck's concept of cortical arousal—which has traditionally been assessed by activity in the EEG alpha band—and reviewing literature on the link between extraversion and cortical arousal, it is revealed that there is conflicting evidence. Due to Eysenck's focus on alpha power, scholars have largely neglected higher frequency bands in the EEG signal as indicators of cortical arousal. Based on recent findings, it is suggested that beta power might not only be an indicator of alertness and attention but also a predictor of cognitive task performance. In conclusion, it is proposed that focused music listening prior to cognitive tasks might be a more efficient way to boost performance than listening to background music during cognitive tasks.

  1. Eysenck's Theory of Personality and the Role of Background Music in Cognitive Task Performance: A Mini-Review of Conflicting Findings and a New Perspective.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Küssner, Mats B

    2017-01-01

    The question of whether background music is able to enhance cognitive task performance is of interest to scholars, educators, and stakeholders in business alike. Studies have shown that background music can have beneficial, detrimental or no effects on cognitive task performance. Extraversion-and its postulated underlying cause, cortical arousal-is regarded as an important factor influencing the outcome of such studies. According to Eysenck's theory of personality, extraverts' cortical arousal at rest is lower compared to that of introverts. Scholars have thus hypothesized that extraverts should benefit from background music in cognitive tasks, whereas introverts' performance should decline with music in the background. Reviewing studies that have considered extraversion as a mediator of the effect of background music on cognitive task performance, it is demonstrated that there is as much evidence in favor as there is against Eysenck's theory of personality. Further, revisiting Eysenck's concept of cortical arousal-which has traditionally been assessed by activity in the EEG alpha band-and reviewing literature on the link between extraversion and cortical arousal, it is revealed that there is conflicting evidence. Due to Eysenck's focus on alpha power, scholars have largely neglected higher frequency bands in the EEG signal as indicators of cortical arousal. Based on recent findings, it is suggested that beta power might not only be an indicator of alertness and attention but also a predictor of cognitive task performance. In conclusion, it is proposed that focused music listening prior to cognitive tasks might be a more efficient way to boost performance than listening to background music during cognitive tasks.

  2. Effects of Non-Driving Related Task Modalities on Takeover Performance in Highly Automated Driving.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wandtner, Bernhard; Schömig, Nadja; Schmidt, Gerald

    2018-04-01

    Aim of the study was to evaluate the impact of different non-driving related tasks (NDR tasks) on takeover performance in highly automated driving. During highly automated driving, it is allowed to engage in NDR tasks temporarily. However, drivers must be able to take over control when reaching a system limit. There is evidence that the type of NDR task has an impact on takeover performance, but little is known about the specific task characteristics that account for performance decrements. Thirty participants drove in a simulator using a highly automated driving system. Each participant faced five critical takeover situations. Based on assumptions of Wickens's multiple resource theory, stimulus and response modalities of a prototypical NDR task were systematically manipulated. Additionally, in one experimental group, the task was locked out simultaneously with the takeover request. Task modalities had significant effects on several measures of takeover performance. A visual-manual texting task degraded performance the most, particularly when performed handheld. In contrast, takeover performance with an auditory-vocal task was comparable to a baseline without any task. Task lockout was associated with faster hands-on-wheel times but not altered brake response times. Results showed that NDR task modalities are relevant factors for takeover performance. An NDR task lockout was highly accepted by the drivers and showed moderate benefits for the first takeover reaction. Knowledge about the impact of NDR task characteristics is an enabler for adaptive takeover concepts. In addition, it might help regulators to make decisions on allowed NDR tasks during automated driving.

  3. Performing Task Integration

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Elkjaer, Bente; Nickelsen, Niels Christian Mossfeldt

    by shared goals and knowledge as well as mutual respect and frequent, timely, accurate and problem-solving ways of communication with the purpose of dealing with the tasks at hand in an integrated way. We introduce and discuss relational coordination theory through a case-study within public healthcare....... Here cross-professional coordination of work was done by scheduled communication twice a day. When we proposed a way for further integration of tasks through an all-inclusive team organization, we were met with resistance. We use the study to discuss whether relational coordination theory is able to do...... away with differences regarding task definitions and working conditions as well as professional knowledge hierarchies and responsibilities for parts and wholes....

  4. Changes in Standing and Walking Performance Under Dual-Task Conditions Across the Lifespan.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ruffieux, Jan; Keller, Martin; Lauber, Benedikt; Taube, Wolfgang

    2015-12-01

    Simultaneous performance of a postural and a concurrent task is rather unproblematic as long as the postural task is executed in an automatic way. However, in situations where postural control requires more central processing, cognitive resources may be exceeded by the addition of an attentionally demanding task. This may lead to interference between the two tasks, manifested in a decreased performance in one or both tasks (dual-task costs). Owing to changes in attentional demands of postural tasks as well as processing capacities across the lifespan, it might be assumed that dual-task costs are particularly pronounced in children and older adults probably leading to a U-shaped pattern for dual-task costs as a function of age. However, these changes in the ability of dual-tasking posture from childhood to old age have not yet been systematically reviewed. Therefore, Web of Science and PubMed databases were searched for studies comparing dual-task performance with one task being standing or walking in healthy groups of young adults and either children or older adults. Seventy-nine studies met inclusion criteria. For older adults, the expected increase in dual-task costs could be confirmed. In contrast, in children there was only feeble evidence for a trend towards enlarged dual-task costs. More good-quality studies comparing dual-task ability in children, young, and, ideally, also older adults within the same paradigm are needed to draw unambiguous conclusions about lifespan development of dual-task performance in postural tasks. There is evidence that, in older adults, dual-task performance can be improved by training. For the other age groups, these effects have yet to be investigated.

  5. Highly automated driving, secondary task performance, and driver state.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Merat, Natasha; Jamson, A Hamish; Lai, Frank C H; Carsten, Oliver

    2012-10-01

    A driving simulator study compared the effect of changes in workload on performance in manual and highly automated driving. Changes in driver state were also observed by examining variations in blink patterns. With the addition of a greater number of advanced driver assistance systems in vehicles, the driver's role is likely to alter in the future from an operator in manual driving to a supervisor of highly automated cars. Understanding the implications of such advancements on drivers and road safety is important. A total of 50 participants were recruited for this study and drove the simulator in both manual and highly automated mode. As well as comparing the effect of adjustments in driving-related workload on performance, the effect of a secondary Twenty Questions Task was also investigated. In the absence of the secondary task, drivers' response to critical incidents was similar in manual and highly automated driving conditions. The worst performance was observed when drivers were required to regain control of driving in the automated mode while distracted by the secondary task. Blink frequency patterns were more consistent for manual than automated driving but were generally suppressed during conditions of high workload. Highly automated driving did not have a deleterious effect on driver performance, when attention was not diverted to the distracting secondary task. As the number of systems implemented in cars increases, an understanding of the implications of such automation on drivers' situation awareness, workload, and ability to remain engaged with the driving task is important.

  6. Effects of force reflection on servomanipulator task performance

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

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

    1986-01-01

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

  7. Experimental evaluation of the influence of various rests on task performance

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Nagasaka, Akihiko; Hirose, Ayako

    2000-01-01

    This report deals with the result of the experiment that 8 subjects had executed adding task and search task. They executed each task in 80 minutes under 5 conditions: (1) with no rest, and with 4 kinds of 20 minutes rests, in which they (2) opened eyes, (3) closed eyes, (4) closed eyes with listening classic music and (5) closed eyes with feet massage, in the middle of the task. The results of analysis of variance with the task performance in the latter half, there were significant differences between each condition with every subject in adding task, and with 6 subjects in search task. However, the orders of the task performance with each condition were not the same by each subject. It was suggested that transition of the arousal levels under the rest was related to the effects of the rest rather than the subjects' taste in rests. In the rest, the percentage of α wave of electroencephalogram and the coefficient of variation of R-R interval (time interval of heart beats) were increased than in executing task. The mean Kendall's rank correlation of coefficient with the order of increase rate of α/β wave and the task performance in the latter half was slightly negative in adding task, but was about 0.4 in search task. From these results, about six requirements for 'an effective rest' were able to be mentioned, for example, 'the devices that raises the arousal levels is carried out just before a rest end'. (author)

  8. Experimental evaluation of the influence of various rests on task performance

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Nagasaka, Akihiko; Hirose, Ayako [Central Research Inst. of Electric Power Industry, Tokyo (Japan)

    2000-01-01

    This report deals with the result of the experiment that 8 subjects had executed adding task and search task. They executed each task in 80 minutes under 5 conditions: (1) with no rest, and with 4 kinds of 20 minutes rests, in which they (2) opened eyes, (3) closed eyes, (4) closed eyes with listening classic music and (5) closed eyes with feet massage, in the middle of the task. The results of analysis of variance with the task performance in the latter half, there were significant differences between each condition with every subject in adding task, and with 6 subjects in search task. However, the orders of the task performance with each condition were not the same by each subject. It was suggested that transition of the arousal levels under the rest was related to the effects of the rest rather than the subjects' taste in rests. In the rest, the percentage of {alpha} wave of electroencephalogram and the coefficient of variation of R-R interval (time interval of heart beats) were increased than in executing task. The mean Kendall's rank correlation of coefficient with the order of increase rate of {alpha}/{beta} wave and the task performance in the latter half was slightly negative in adding task, but was about 0.4 in search task. From these results, about six requirements for 'an effective rest' were able to be mentioned, for example, 'the devices that raises the arousal levels is carried out just before a rest end'. (author)

  9. The Attentional Boost Effect: Transient increases in attention to one task enhance performance in a second task.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Swallow, Khena M; Jiang, Yuhong V

    2010-04-01

    Recent work on event perception suggests that perceptual processing increases when events change. An important question is how such changes influence the way other information is processed, particularly during dual-task performance. In this study, participants monitored a long series of distractor items for an occasional target as they simultaneously encoded unrelated background scenes. The appearance of an occasional target could have two opposite effects on the secondary task: It could draw attention away from the second task, or, as a change in the ongoing event, it could improve secondary task performance. Results were consistent with the second possibility. Memory for scenes presented simultaneously with the targets was better than memory for scenes that preceded or followed the targets. This effect was observed when the primary detection task involved visual feature oddball detection, auditory oddball detection, and visual color-shape conjunction detection. It was eliminated when the detection task was omitted, and when it required an arbitrary response mapping. The appearance of occasional, task-relevant events appears to trigger a temporal orienting response that facilitates processing of concurrently attended information (Attentional Boost Effect). Copyright 2009 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  10. The trickle-down effect of predictability: Secondary task performance benefits from predictability in the primary task.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Magdalena Ewa Król

    Full Text Available Predictions optimize processing by reducing attentional resources allocation to expected or predictable sensory data. Our study demonstrates that these saved processing resources can be then used on concurrent stimuli, and in consequence improve their processing and encoding. We illustrate this "trickle-down" effect with a dual task, where the primary task varied in terms of predictability. The primary task involved detection of a pre-specified symbol that appeared at some point of a short video of a dot moving along a random, semi-predictable or predictable trajectory. The concurrent secondary task involved memorization of photographs representing either emotionally neutral or non-neutral (social or threatening content. Performance in the secondary task was measured by a memory test. We found that participants allocated more attention to unpredictable (random and semi-predictable stimuli than to predictable stimuli. Additionally, when the stimuli in the primary task were more predictable, participants performed better in the secondary task, as evidenced by higher sensitivity in the memory test. Finally, social or threatening stimuli were allocated more "looking time" and a larger number of saccades than neutral stimuli. This effect was stronger for the threatening stimuli than social stimuli. Thus, predictability of environmental input is used in optimizing the allocation of attentional resources, which trickles-down and benefits the processing of concurrent stimuli.

  11. The trickle-down effect of predictability: Secondary task performance benefits from predictability in the primary task.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Król, Magdalena Ewa; Król, Michał

    2017-01-01

    Predictions optimize processing by reducing attentional resources allocation to expected or predictable sensory data. Our study demonstrates that these saved processing resources can be then used on concurrent stimuli, and in consequence improve their processing and encoding. We illustrate this "trickle-down" effect with a dual task, where the primary task varied in terms of predictability. The primary task involved detection of a pre-specified symbol that appeared at some point of a short video of a dot moving along a random, semi-predictable or predictable trajectory. The concurrent secondary task involved memorization of photographs representing either emotionally neutral or non-neutral (social or threatening) content. Performance in the secondary task was measured by a memory test. We found that participants allocated more attention to unpredictable (random and semi-predictable) stimuli than to predictable stimuli. Additionally, when the stimuli in the primary task were more predictable, participants performed better in the secondary task, as evidenced by higher sensitivity in the memory test. Finally, social or threatening stimuli were allocated more "looking time" and a larger number of saccades than neutral stimuli. This effect was stronger for the threatening stimuli than social stimuli. Thus, predictability of environmental input is used in optimizing the allocation of attentional resources, which trickles-down and benefits the processing of concurrent stimuli.

  12. Working memory in children predicts performance on a gambling task.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Audusseau, Jean; Juhel, Jacques

    2015-01-01

    The authors investigated whether working memory (WM) plays a significant role in the development of decision making in children, operationalized by the Children's Gambling Task (CGT). A total of 105 children aged 6-7, 8-9, and 10-11 years old carried out the CGT. Children aged 6-7 years old were found to have a lower performance than older children, which shows that the CGT is sensitive to participant's age. The hypothesis that WM plays a significant role in decision making was then tested following two approaches: (a) an experimental approach, comparing between groups the performance on the CGT in a control condition (the CGT only was administered) to that in a double task condition (participants had to carry out a recall task in addition to the CGT); (b) an interindividual approach, probing the relationship between CGT performance and performance on tasks measuring WM efficiency. The between-groups approach evidenced a better performance in the control group. Moreover, the interindividual approach showed that the higher the participants' WM efficiency was, the higher their performance in the CGT was. Taken together, these two approaches yield converging results that support the hypothesis that WM plays a significant role in decision making in children.

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

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

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

    1987-04-01

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

  14. Combined factors effect of menstrual cycle and background noise on visual inspection task performance: a simulation-based task.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wijayanto, Titis; Tochihara, Yutaka; Wijaya, Andi R; Hermawati, Setia

    2009-11-01

    It is well known that women are physiologically and psychologically influenced by the menstrual cycle. In addition, the presence of background noise may affect task performance. So far, it has proven difficult to describe how the menstrual cycle and background noise affect task performance; some researchers have found an increment of performance during menstruation or during the presence of noise, others found performance deterioration, while other still have reported no dominant effect either of the menstrual cycle in performance or of the presence of noise. However, no study to date has investigated the combinational effect between the menstrual cycle and the presence of background noise in task performance. Therefore, the purpose of this study was to examine the combined factor effect of menstrual cycle and background noise on visual inspection task performance indices by Signal Detection Theory (SDT) metrics: sensitivity index (d') and response criteria index (beta). For this purpose, ten healthy female students (21.5+/-1.08 years) with a regular menstrual cycle participated in this study. A VDT-based visual inspection task was used for the experiment in 3x2 factorial designs. Two factors, menstrual phase, pre-menstruation (PMS), menstruation (M), and post-menstruation (PM) and background noise, with 80 dB(A) background noise and without noise, were analyzed as the main factors in this study. The results concluded that the sensitivity index (d') of SDT was affected in all the menstrual cycle conditions (pbackground noise (pbackground noise was found in this study. On the other hand, no significant effect was observed in the subject's tendency in visual inspection, shown by beta along the menstrual cycle and the presence of background noise. According to the response criteria for each individual subject, the presence of noise affected the tendency of some subjects in detecting the object and making decision during the visual inspection task.

  15. The Neurocognitive Basis for Impaired Dual-Task Performance in Senior Fallers.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nagamatsu, Lindsay S; Hsu, C Liang; Voss, Michelle W; Chan, Alison; Bolandzadeh, Niousha; Handy, Todd C; Graf, Peter; Beattie, B Lynn; Liu-Ambrose, Teresa

    2016-01-01

    Falls are a major health-care concern, and while dual-task performance is widely recognized as being impaired in those at-risk for falls, the underlying neurocognitive mechanisms remain unknown. A better understanding of the underlying mechanisms could lead to the refinement and development of behavioral, cognitive, or neuropharmacological interventions for falls prevention. Therefore, we conducted a cross-sectional study with community-dwelling older adults aged 70-80 years with a history of falls (i.e., two or more falls in the past 12 months) or no history of falls (i.e., zero falls in the past 12 months); n = 28 per group. We compared functional activation during cognitive-based dual-task performance between fallers and non-fallers using functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI). Executive cognitive functioning was assessed via Stroop, Trail Making, and Digit Span. Mobility was assessed via the Timed Up and Go test (TUG). We found that non-fallers exhibited significantly greater functional activation compared with fallers during dual-task performance in key regions responsible for resolving dual-task interference, including precentral, postcentral, and lingual gyri. Further, we report slower reaction times during dual-task performance in fallers and significant correlations between level of functional activation and independent measures of executive cognitive functioning and mobility. Our study is the first neuroimaging study to examine dual-task performance in fallers, and supports the notion that fallers have reduced functional brain activation compared with non-fallers. Given that dual-task performance-and the underlying neural concomitants-appears to be malleable with relevant training, our study serves as a launching point for promising strategies to reduce falls in the future.

  16. Increasing Optimism Protects Against Pain-Induced Impairment in Task-Shifting Performance.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Boselie, Jantine J L M; Vancleef, Linda M G; Peters, Madelon L

    2017-04-01

    Persistent pain can lead to difficulties in executive task performance. Three core executive functions that are often postulated are inhibition, updating, and shifting. Optimism, the tendency to expect that good things happen in the future, has been shown to protect against pain-induced performance deterioration in executive function updating. This study tested whether this protective effect of a temporary optimistic state by means of a writing and visualization exercise extended to executive function shifting. A 2 (optimism: optimism vs no optimism) × 2 (pain: pain vs no pain) mixed factorial design was conducted. Participants (N = 61) completed a shifting task once with and once without concurrent painful heat stimulation after an optimism or neutral manipulation. Results showed that shifting performance was impaired when experimental heat pain was applied during task execution, and that optimism counteracted pain-induced deterioration in task-shifting performance. Experimentally-induced heat pain impairs shifting task performance and manipulated optimism or induced optimism counteracted this pain-induced performance deterioration. Identifying psychological factors that may diminish the negative effect of persistent pain on the ability to function in daily life is imperative. Copyright © 2016 American Pain Society. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  17. Bright-light effects on cognitive performance in elderly persons working simulated night shifts: psychological well-being as a mediator?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kretschmer, Veronika; Schmidt, Klaus-Helmut; Griefahn, Barbara

    2013-11-01

    The present study examined whether the relationship between light exposure and cognitive functioning is mediated by psychological well-being in elderly persons working night shifts. The role of psychological well-being has been neglected so far in the relationship between bright light and cognitive performance. Sleepiness and mood were applied as indicators of psychological well-being. Cognitive functioning was examined in terms of concentration, working memory, and divided attention. A total of thirty-two test persons worked in three consecutive simulated night shifts, 16 under bright light (3,000 lux) and 16 under room light (300 lux). Concentration, working memory, and divided attention were measured by computerised tasks. The hypothesised mediators were recorded by questionnaires. Mediation analyses were conducted for estimating direct, total, and indirect effects in simple mediation models. Results indicate that sleepiness and mood did not function as mediators in the prediction of concentration, working memory, and/or divided attention by light exposure. Sleepiness led to an underestimation of the positive bright-light effect on concentration performance. Mood showed only a random effect due to the positive bright-light effect on working memory. Sleepiness and mood could completely be excluded as mediators in the relationship between light exposure and cognitive functioning. This study underlines that psychological well-being of elderly persons is not a critical component in the treatment of bright light on cognitive performance in the night shift workplace. In summary, it becomes evident that bright light has a strong direct and independent effect on cognitive performance, particularly on working memory and concentration.

  18. When Task Conflict Becomes Personal: The Impact of Perceived Team Performance.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Guenter, Hannes; van Emmerik, Hetty; Schreurs, Bert; Kuypers, Tom; van Iterson, Ad; Notelaers, Guy

    2016-10-01

    Although potentially beneficial, task conflict may threaten teams because it often leads to relationship conflict. Prior research has identified a set of interpersonal factors (e.g., team communication, team trust) that help attenuate this association. The purpose of this article is to provide an alternative perspective that focuses on the moderating role of performance-related factors (i.e., perceived team performance). Using social identity theory, we build a model that predicts how task conflict associates with growth in relationship conflict and how perceived team performance influences this association. We test a three-wave longitudinal model by means of random coefficient growth modeling, using data from 60 ongoing teams working in a health care organization. Results provide partial support for our hypotheses. Only when perceived team performance is low, do task conflicts relate with growth in relationship conflict. We conclude that perceived team performance seems to enable teams to uncouple task from relationship conflict.

  19. Group social rank is associated with performance on a spatial learning task.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Langley, Ellis J G; van Horik, Jayden O; Whiteside, Mark A; Madden, Joah R

    2018-02-01

    Dominant individuals differ from subordinates in their performances on cognitive tasks across a suite of taxa. Previous studies often only consider dyadic relationships, rather than the more ecologically relevant social hierarchies or networks, hence failing to account for how dyadic relationships may be adjusted within larger social groups. We used a novel statistical method: randomized Elo-ratings, to infer the social hierarchy of 18 male pheasants, Phasianus colchicus , while in a captive, mixed-sex group with a linear hierarchy. We assayed individual learning performance of these males on a binary spatial discrimination task to investigate whether inter-individual variation in performance is associated with group social rank. Task performance improved with increasing trial number and was positively related to social rank, with higher ranking males showing greater levels of success. Motivation to participate in the task was not related to social rank or task performance, thus indicating that these rank-related differences are not a consequence of differences in motivation to complete the task. Our results provide important information about how variation in cognitive performance relates to an individual's social rank within a group. Whether the social environment causes differences in learning performance or instead, inherent differences in learning ability predetermine rank remains to be tested.

  20. Cerebellar tDCS does not affect performance in the N-back task.

    Science.gov (United States)

    van Wessel, Brenda W V; Claire Verhage, M; Holland, Peter; Frens, Maarten A; van der Geest, Jos N

    2016-01-01

    The N-back task is widely used in cognitive research. Furthermore, the cerebellum's role in cognitive processes is becoming more widely recognized. Studies using transcranial direct current stimulation (tDCS) have demonstrated effects of cerebellar stimulation on several cognitive tasks. Therefore, the aim of this study was to investigate the effects of cerebellar tDCS on cognitive performance by using the N-back task. The cerebellum of 12 participants was stimulated during the task. Moreover, the cognitive load was manipulated in N = 2, N = 3, and N = 4. Every participant received three tDCS conditions (anodal, cathodal, and sham) divided over three separated days. It was expected that anodal stimulation would improve performance on the task. Each participant performed 6 repetitions of every load in which correct responses, false alarms, and reaction times were recorded. We found significant differences between the three levels of load in the rate of correct responses and false alarms, indicating that subjects followed the expected pattern of performance for the N-back task. However, no significant differences between the three tDCS conditions were found. Therefore, it was concluded that in this study cognitive performance on the N-back task was not readily influenced by cerebellar tDCS, and any true effects are likely to be small. We discuss several limitations in task design and suggest future experiments to address such issues.

  1. The location discrimination reversal task in mice is sensitive to deficits in performance caused by aging, pharmacological and other challenges.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Graf, Radka; Longo, Jami L; Hughes, Zoë A

    2018-06-01

    Deficits in hippocampal-mediated pattern separation are one aspect of cognitive function affected in schizophrenia (SZ) or Alzheimer's disease (AD). To develop novel therapies, it is beneficial to explore this specific aspect of cognition preclinically. The location discrimination reversal (LDR) task is a hippocampal-dependent operant paradigm that evaluates spatial learning and cognitive flexibility using touchscreens. Here we assessed baseline performance as well as multimodal disease-relevant manipulations in mice. Mice were trained to discriminate between the locations of two images where the degree of separation impacted performance. Administration of putative pro-cognitive agents was unable to improve performance at narrow separation. Furthermore, a range of disease-relevant manipulations were characterized to assess whether performance could be impaired and restored. Pertinent to the cholinergic loss in AD, scopolamine (0.1 mg/kg) produced a disruption in LDR, which was attenuated by donepezil (1 mg/kg). Consistent with NMDA hypofunction in cognitive impairment associated with SZ, MK-801 (0.1 mg/kg) also disrupted performance; however, this deficit was not modified by rolipram. Microdeletion of genes associated with SZ (22q11) resulted in impaired performance, which was restored by rolipram (0.032 mg/kg). Since aging and inflammation affect cognition and are risk factors for AD, these aspects were also evaluated. Aged mice were slower to acquire the task than young mice and did not reach the same level of performance. A systemic inflammatory challenge (lipopolysaccharide (LPS), 1 mg/kg) produced prolonged (7 days) deficits in the LDR task. These data suggest that LDR task is a valuable platform for evaluating disease-relevant deficits in pattern separation and offers potential for identifying novel therapies.

  2. The BOLD Response during Stroop Task-Like Inhibition Paradigms: Effects of Task Difficulty and Task-Relevant Modality

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mitchell, Rachel L. C.

    2005-01-01

    Previous studies of the Stroop task propose two key mediators: the prefrontal and cingulate cortices but hints exist of functional specialization within these regions. This study aimed to examine the effect of task modality upon the prefrontal and cingulate response by examining the response to colour, number, and shape Stroop tasks whilst BOLD…

  3. Increased default-mode variability is related to reduced task-performance and is evident in adults with ADHD

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Athanasia M. Mowinckel

    2017-01-01

    Full Text Available Insufficient suppression and connectivity of the default mode network (DMN is a potential mediator of cognitive dysfunctions across various disorders, including attention deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD. However, it remains unclear if alterations in sustained DMN suppression, variability and connectivity during prolonged cognitive engagement are implicated in adult ADHD pathophysiology, and to which degree methylphenidate (MPH remediates any DMN abnormalities. This randomized, double-blinded, placebo-controlled, cross-over clinical trial of MPH (clinicaltrials.gov/ct2/show/NCT01831622 explored large-scale brain network dynamics in 20 adults with ADHD on and off MPH, compared to 27 healthy controls, while performing a reward based decision-making task. DMN task-related activation, variability, and connectivity were estimated and compared between groups and conditions using independent component analysis, dual regression, and Bayesian linear mixed models. The results show that the DMN exhibited more variable activation patterns in unmedicated patients compared to healthy controls. Group differences in functional connectivity both between and within functional networks were evident. Further, functional connectivity between and within attention and DMN networks was sensitive both to task performance and case-control status. MPH altered within-network connectivity of the DMN and visual networks, but not between-network connectivity or temporal variability. This study thus provides novel fMRI evidence of reduced sustained DMN suppression in adults with ADHD during value-based decision-making, a pattern that was not alleviated by MPH. We infer from multiple analytical approaches further support to the default mode interference hypothesis, in that higher DMN activation variability is evident in adult ADHD and associated with lower task performance.

  4. A Novel Method for Assessing Task Complexity in Outpatient Clinical-Performance Measures.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hysong, Sylvia J; Amspoker, Amber B; Petersen, Laura A

    2016-04-01

    Clinical-performance measurement has helped improve the quality of health-care; yet success in attaining high levels of quality across multiple domains simultaneously still varies considerably. Although many sources of variability in care quality have been studied, the difficulty required to complete the clinical work itself has received little attention. We present a task-based methodology for evaluating the difficulty of clinical-performance measures (CPMs) by assessing the complexity of their component requisite tasks. Using Functional Job Analysis (FJA), subject-matter experts (SMEs) generated task lists for 17 CPMs; task lists were rated on ten dimensions of complexity, and then aggregated into difficulty composites. Eleven outpatient work SMEs; 133 VA Medical Centers nationwide. Clinical Performance: 17 outpatient CPMs (2000-2008) at 133 VA Medical Centers nationwide. Measure Difficulty: for each CPM, the number of component requisite tasks and the average rating across ten FJA complexity scales for the set of tasks comprising the measure. Measures varied considerably in the number of component tasks (M = 10.56, SD = 6.25, min = 5, max = 25). Measures of chronic care following acute myocardial infarction exhibited significantly higher measure difficulty ratings compared to diabetes or screening measures, but not to immunization measures ([Formula: see text] = 0.45, -0.04, -0.05, and -0.06 respectively; F (3, 186) = 3.57, p = 0.015). Measure difficulty ratings were not significantly correlated with the number of component tasks (r = -0.30, p = 0.23). Evaluating the difficulty of achieving recommended CPM performance levels requires more than simply counting the tasks involved; using FJA to assess the complexity of CPMs' component tasks presents an alternate means of assessing the difficulty of primary-care CPMs and accounting for performance variation among measures and performers. This in turn could be used in designing

  5. 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

  6. Can motto-goals outperform learning and performance goals? Influence of goal setting on performance and affect in a complex problem solving task

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Miriam S. Rohe

    2016-09-01

    Full Text Available In this paper, we bring together research on complex problem solving with that on motivational psychology about goal setting. Complex problems require motivational effort because of their inherent difficulties. Goal Setting Theory has shown with simple tasks that high, specific performance goals lead to better performance outcome than do-your-best goals. However, in complex tasks, learning goals have proven more effective than performance goals. Based on the Zurich Resource Model (Storch & Krause, 2014, so-called motto-goals (e.g., "I breathe happiness" should activate a person’s resources through positive affect. It was found that motto-goals are effective with unpleasant duties. Therefore, we tested the hypothesis that motto-goals outperform learning and performance goals in the case of complex problems. A total of N = 123 subjects participated in the experiment. In dependence of their goal condition, subjects developed a personal motto, learning, or performance goal. This goal was adapted for the computer-simulated complex scenario Tailorshop, where subjects worked as managers in a small fictional company. Other than expected, there was no main effect of goal condition for the management performance. As hypothesized, motto goals led to higher positive and lower negative affect than the other two goal types. Even though positive affect decreased and negative affect increased in all three groups during Tailorshop completion, participants with motto goals reported the lowest rates of negative affect over time. Exploratory analyses investigated the role of affect in complex problem solving via mediational analyses and the influence of goal type on perceived goal attainment.

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

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    van Vugt, Marieke K; Broers, Nico

    2016-01-01

    When asked to perform a certain task, we typically spend a decent amount of time thinking thoughts unrelated to that task-a phenomenon referred to as "mind-wandering." It is thought that this mind-wandering is driven at least in part by our unfinished goals and concerns. Previous studies have shown

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    Moradzadeh, Linda; Blumenthal, Galit; Wiseheart, Melody

    2015-01-01

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

  9. Task versus relationship conflict, team performance, and team member satisfaction: a meta-analysis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    De Dreu, Carsten K W; Weingart, Laurie R

    2003-08-01

    This study provides a meta-analysis of research on the associations between relationship conflict, task conflict, team performance, and team member satisfaction. Consistent with past theorizing, results revealed strong and negative correlations between relationship conflict, team performance, and team member satisfaction. In contrast to what has been suggested in both academic research and introductory textbooks, however, results also revealed strong and negative (instead of the predicted positive) correlations between task conflict team performance, and team member satisfaction. As predicted, conflict had stronger negative relations with team performance in highly complex (decision making, project, mixed) than in less complex (production) tasks. Finally, task conflict was less negatively related to team performance when task conflict and relationship conflict were weakly, rather than strongly, correlated.

  10. Assessing air medical crew real-time readiness to perform critical tasks.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Braude, Darren; Goldsmith, Timothy; Weiss, Steven J

    2011-01-01

    Air medical transport has had problems with its safety record, attributed in part to human error. Flight crew members (FCMs) must be able to focus on critical safety tasks in the context of a stressful environment. Flight crew members' cognitive readiness (CR) to perform their jobs may be affected by sleep deprivation, personal problems, high workload, and use of alcohol and drugs. The current study investigated the feasibility of using a computer-based cognitive task to assess FCMs' readiness to perform their job. The FCMs completed a short questionnaire to evaluate their physiologic and psychological state at the beginning and end of each shift. The FCMs then performed 3 minutes of a computer-based cognitive task called synthetic work environment (SYNWIN test battery). Task performance was compared with the questionnaire variables using correlation and regression analysis. Differences between the beginning and end of each shift were matched and compared using a paired Students t test. SYNWIN performance was significantly worse at the end of a shift compared with the beginning of the shift (p = 0.028) primarily because of decrement in the memory component. The SYNWIN composite scores were negatively correlated to degree of irritability felt by the participant, both before (r = -0.25) and after (r = -0.34) a shift and were significantly correlated with amount of sleep (0.22), rest (0.30), and life satisfaction (0.30). Performance by FCMs on a simple, rapid, computer-based psychological test correlates well with self-reported sleep, rest, life satisfaction, and irritability. Although further studies are warranted, these findings suggest that assessment of the performance of FCMs on a simple, rapid, computer-based, multitasking battery is feasible as an approach to determine their readiness to perform critical safety tasks through the SYNWIN task battery.

  11. Self-reported quality of ADL task performance among patients with COPD exacerbations

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Bendixen, Hans Jørgen; Wæhrens, Eva Elisabet Ejlersen; Wilcke, Jon Torgny

    2014-01-01

    OBJECTIVE: Patients suffering from chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) experience problems in the performance of activities of daily living (ADL) tasks. The objective was to examine the self-reported quality of ADL task performance among COPD patients, and to investigate whether age...... concerning age, gender, and routine COPD characteristics were drawn from the patients' medical records. RESULTS: The patients reported being inefficient to markedly inefficient when performing ADL tasks within the personal hygiene, toileting, dressing, household, mobility, and transportation domains. While...... more than 90% of the participants reported increased effort and/or fatigue when performing the ADL tasks, up to 88% of the participants relied on help from others in the performance of general household chores like cooking and shopping. Self-reported ADL ability did not correlate with age, gender...

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kymberly eYoung

    2012-08-01

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

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2016-01-01

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

  14. Performance monitoring and response conflict resolution associated with choice stepping reaction tasks.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Watanabe, Tatsunori; Tsutou, Kotaro; Saito, Kotaro; Ishida, Kazuto; Tanabe, Shigeo; Nojima, Ippei

    2016-11-01

    Choice reaction requires response conflict resolution, and the resolution processes that occur during a choice stepping reaction task undertaken in a standing position, which requires maintenance of balance, may be different to those processes occurring during a choice reaction task performed in a seated position. The study purpose was to investigate the resolution processes during a choice stepping reaction task at the cortical level using electroencephalography and compare the results with a control task involving ankle dorsiflexion responses. Twelve young adults either stepped forward or dorsiflexed the ankle in response to a visual imperative stimulus presented on a computer screen. We used the Simon task and examined the error-related negativity (ERN) that follows an incorrect response and the correct-response negativity (CRN) that follows a correct response. Error was defined as an incorrect initial weight transfer for the stepping task and as an incorrect initial tibialis anterior activation for the control task. Results revealed that ERN and CRN amplitudes were similar in size for the stepping task, whereas the amplitude of ERN was larger than that of CRN for the control task. The ERN amplitude was also larger in the stepping task than the control task. These observations suggest that a choice stepping reaction task involves a strategy emphasizing post-response conflict and general performance monitoring of actual and required responses and also requires greater cognitive load than a choice dorsiflexion reaction. The response conflict resolution processes appear to be different for stepping tasks and reaction tasks performed in a seated position.

  15. Relationships between Contextual and Task Performance and Interrater Agreement: Are There Any?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Díaz-Vilela, Luis F; Delgado Rodríguez, Naira; Isla-Díaz, Rosa; Díaz-Cabrera, Dolores; Hernández-Fernaud, Estefanía; Rosales-Sánchez, Christian

    2015-01-01

    Work performance is one of the most important dependent variables in Work and Organizational Psychology. The main objective of this paper was to explore the relationships between citizenship performance and task performance measures obtained from different appraisers and their consistency through a seldom-used methodology, intraclass correlation coefficients. Participants were 135 public employees, the total staff in a local government department. Jobs were clustered into job families through a work analysis based on standard questionnaires. A task description technique was used to develop a performance appraisal questionnaire for each job family, with three versions: self-, supervisor-, and peer-evaluation, in addition to a measure of citizenship performance. Only when the self-appraisal bias is controlled, significant correlations appeared between task performance rates. However, intraclass correlations analyses show that only self- (contextual and task) performance measures are consistent, while interrater agreement disappears. These results provide some interesting clues about the procedure of appraisal instrument development, the role of appraisers, and the importance of choosing adequate consistency analysis methods.

  16. The task-relevant attribute representation can mediate the Simon effect.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Dandan Tang

    Full Text Available Researchers have previously suggested a working memory (WM account of spatial codes, and based on this suggestion, the present study carries out three experiments to investigate how the task-relevant attribute representation (verbal or visual in the typical Simon task affects the Simon effect. Experiment 1 compared the Simon effect between the between- and within-category color conditions, which required subjects to discriminate between red and blue stimuli (presumed to be represented by verbal WM codes because it was easy and fast to name the colors verbally and to discriminate between two similar green stimuli (presumed to be represented by visual WM codes because it was hard and time-consuming to name the colors verbally, respectively. The results revealed a reliable Simon effect that only occurs in the between-category condition. Experiment 2 assessed the Simon effect by requiring subjects to discriminate between two different isosceles trapezoids (within-category shapes and to discriminate isosceles trapezoid from rectangle (between-category shapes, and the results replicated and expanded the findings of Experiment 1. In Experiment 3, subjects were required to perform both tasks from Experiment 1. Wherein, in Experiment 3A, the between-category task preceded the within-category task; in Experiment 3B, the task order was opposite. The results showed the reliable Simon effect when subjects represented the task-relevant stimulus attributes by verbal WM encoding. In addition, the response times (RTs distribution analysis for both the between- and within-category conditions of Experiments 3A and 3B showed decreased Simon effect with the RTs lengthened. Altogether, although the present results are consistent with the temporal coding account, we put forth that the Simon effect also depends on the verbal WM representation of task-relevant stimulus attribute.

  17. The Effects of Background Music on Primary School Pupils' Task Performance.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hallam, Susan; Price, John; Katsarou, Georgia

    2002-01-01

    Presents two studies that explored the effects of music perceived as calming and relaxing on arithmetic and memory performance tasks of 10- to 12-year-old children. Reports that the calming music led to better performance on both tasks when compared with the non-music condition. Includes references. (CMK)

  18. Concurrent performance of two memory tasks: evidence for domain-specific working memory systems.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cocchini, Gianna; Logie, Robert H; Della Sala, Sergio; MacPherson, Sarah E; Baddeley, Alan D

    2002-10-01

    Previous studies of dual-task coordination in working memory have shown a lack of dual-task interference when a verbal memory task is combined with concurrent perceptuomotor tracking. Two experiments are reported in which participants were required to perform pairwise combinations of (1) a verbal memory task, a visual memory task, and perceptuomotor tracking (Experiment 1), and (2) pairwise combinations of the two memory tasks and articulatory suppression (Experiment 2). Tracking resulted in no disruption of the verbal memory preload over and above the impact of a delay in recall and showed only minimal disruption of the retention of the visual memory load. Performing an ongoing verbal memory task had virtually no impact on retention of a visual memory preload or vice versa, indicating that performing two demanding memory tasks results in little mutual interference. Experiment 2 also showed minimal disruption when the two memory tasks were combined, although verbal memory (but not visual memory) was clearly disrupted by articulatory suppression interpolated between presentation and recall. These data suggest that a multiple-component working memory model provides a better account for performance in concurrent immediate memory tasks than do theories that assume a single processing and storage system or a limited-capacity attentional system coupled with activated memory traces.

  19. Using task performance to inform treatment planning for youth with ADHD: A systematic review.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Molitor, Stephen J; Langberg, Joshua M

    2017-12-01

    The role that neuropsychological task performance plays in the assessment of Attention-Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) is currently ambiguous, and findings are mixed regarding whether tasks have validity for diagnosing the disorder. Irrespective of their validity for diagnosing ADHD, neuropsychological tasks could provide valuable information to mental health professionals if they can inform recommendations for treatment targets and modalities. Therefore, this review sought to synthesize the available evidence related to the use of neuropsychological task performance as a tool for informing treatment planning for youth with ADHD. Reviewed studies focused on examinations of associations between task performance and academic, social, and health outcomes, as well as response to treatment. Twenty-five relevant studies using samples of youth diagnosed with ADHD in clinical, community, and school settings were identified. Review of the evidence suggests that task performance may be useful in identifying individuals with ADHD at risk for academic impairment. However, the evidence is less compelling for identifying youth at risk for impaired social functioning or poor health outcomes. The review also found that task performance is likely useful for predicting response to treatment with methylphenidate. Across studies, evidence indicated that interpreting task performance in an integrated manner, such as a factor score or mean score, was more consistently useful for predicting outcomes of interest than interpreting performance from a single task. Implications for the use of tasks in ADHD assessments are discussed, and future directions are outlined for further examining the clinical utility of task performance. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  20. Reduced Dual-Task Performance in MS Patients Is Further Decreased by Muscle Fatigue.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wolkorte, Ria; Heersema, Dorothea J; Zijdewind, Inge

    2015-06-01

    Multiple sclerosis (MS) can be accompanied by motor, cognitive, and sensory impairments. Additionally, MS patients often report fatigue as one of their most debilitating symptoms. It is, therefore, expected that MS patients will have difficulties in performing cognitive-motor dual tasks (DTs), especially in a fatiguing condition. To determine whether MS patients are more challenged by a DT than controls in a fatiguing and less-fatiguing condition and whether DT performance is associated with perceived fatigue. A group of 19 MS patients and 19 age-, sex-, and education-matched controls performed a cognitive task (2-choice reaction time task) separately or concurrent with a low-force or a high-force motor task (index finger abduction at 10% or 30% maximal voluntary contraction). MS patients performed less well on a cognitive task than controls. Cognitive task performance under DT conditions decreased more for MS patients. Moreover, under high-force DT conditions, cognitive performance declined in both groups but to a larger degree for MS patients. Besides a decline in cognitive task performance, MS patients also showed a stronger decrease in motor performance under high-force DT conditions. DT costs were positively related to perceived fatigue as measured by questionnaires. Compared with controls, MS patients performed less well on DTs as demonstrated by a reduction in both cognitive and motor performances. This performance decrease was stronger under fatiguing conditions and was related to the sense of fatigue of MS patients. These data illustrate problems that MS patients may encounter in daily life because of their fatigue. © The Author(s) 2014.

  1. Ranking Performance Measures in Multi-Task Agencies

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Christensen, Peter Ove; Sabac, Florin; Tian, Joyce

    We derive sufficient conditions for ranking performance evaluation systems in multi-task agency models using both optimal and linear contracts in terms of a second-order stochastic dominance (SSD) condition on the likelihood ratios. The SSD condition can be replaced by a variance-covariance matrix...

  2. Do attentional capacities and processing speed mediate the effect of age on executive functioning?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gilsoul, Jessica; Simon, Jessica; Hogge, Michaël; Collette, Fabienne

    2018-02-06

    The executive processes are well known to decline with age, and similar data also exists for attentional capacities and processing speed. Therefore, we investigated whether these two last nonexecutive variables would mediate the effect of age on executive functions (inhibition, shifting, updating, and dual-task coordination). We administered a large battery of executive, attentional and processing speed tasks to 104 young and 71 older people, and we performed mediation analyses with variables showing a significant age effect. All executive and processing speed measures showed age-related effects while only the visual scanning task performance (selective attention) was explained by age when controlled for gender and educational level. Regarding mediation analyses, visual scanning partially mediated the age effect on updating while processing speed partially mediated the age effect on shifting, updating and dual-task coordination. In a more exploratory way, inhibition was also found to partially mediate the effect of age on the three other executive functions. Attention did not greatly influence executive functioning in aging while, in agreement with the literature, processing speed seems to be a major mediator of the age effect on these processes. Interestingly, the global pattern of results seems also to indicate an influence of inhibition but further studies are needed to confirm the role of that variable as a mediator and its relative importance by comparison with processing speed.

  3. Exploration of task performance tests in a physics laboratory

    Science.gov (United States)

    Liu, Dan; El Turkey, Houssein

    2017-11-01

    In this article, we investigate the implementation of task performance tests in an undergraduate physics laboratory. Two performance tests were carried out over two semesters using the task of building a DC circuit. The first implementation in Spring 2014 had certain concerns such as the privacy of students’ testing and their ‘trial and error’ attempts. These concerns were addressed in Fall 2015 through implementing a second performance test. The second implementation was administered differently but the content of the two tests was the same. We discuss the validity of both implementations and present the correlation (or lack of) between the time that students needed to complete the tests and their grades from a paper-based laboratory assessment method.

  4. Does Degree of Work Task Completion Influence Retrieval Performance?

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Ingwersen, Peter; Bogers, Toine; Lykke, Marianne

    2010-01-01

    their perception of task completion. Also, with the exception of full text records and across all document types, both measured at rank 10, no statistically significant correlation is observed with respect to retrieval performance influenced by degrees of perceived work task completion or individual types......In this contribution we investigate the potential influence between assessors’ perceived completion of their work task at hand and their actual assessment of usefulness of the retrieved information. The results indicate that the number of useful documents found by assessors does not influence...

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

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Geer-Rutten-Rijswijk, van der E.; Tuijl, van H.F.J.M.; Rutte, C.G.

    2009-01-01

    In healthcare, performance indicators are increasingly used to measure and control quality and efficiency of care-providing teams. This article demonstrates that when controllability is emphasized during indicator development, the level of task uncertainty influences the type of resulting

  6. Occupational-Specific Strength Predicts Astronaut-Related Task Performance in a Weighted Suit.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Taylor, Andrew; Kotarsky, Christopher J; Bond, Colin W; Hackney, Kyle J

    2018-01-01

    Future space missions beyond low Earth orbit will require deconditioned astronauts to perform occupationally relevant tasks within a planetary spacesuit. The prediction of time-to-completion (TTC) of astronaut tasks will be critical for crew safety, autonomous operations, and mission success. This exploratory study determined if the addition of task-specific strength testing to current standard lower body testing would enhance the prediction of TTC in a 1-G test battery. Eight healthy participants completed NASA lower body strength tests, occupationally specific strength tests, and performed six task simulations (hand drilling, construction wrenching, incline walking, collecting weighted samples, and dragging an unresponsive crewmember to safety) in a 48-kg weighted suit. The TTC for each task was recorded and summed to obtain a total TTC for the test battery. Linear regression was used to predict total TTC with two models: 1) NASA lower body strength tests; and 2) NASA lower body strength tests + occupationally specific strength tests. Total TTC of the test battery ranged from 20.2-44.5 min. The lower body strength test alone accounted for 61% of the variability in total TTC. The addition of hand drilling and wrenching strength tests accounted for 99% of the variability in total TTC. Adding occupationally specific strength tests (hand drilling and wrenching) to standard lower body strength tests successfully predicted total TTC in a performance test battery within a weighted suit. Future research should couple these strength tests with higher fidelity task simulations to determine the utility and efficacy of task performance prediction.Taylor A, Kotarsky CJ, Bond CW, Hackney KJ. Occupational-specific strength predicts astronaut-related task performance in a weighted suit. Aerosp Med Hum Perform. 2018; 89(1):58-62.

  7. 78 FR 15112 - Rulemaking Advisory Committee; Transport Airplane Performance and Handling Characteristics-New Task

    Science.gov (United States)

    2013-03-08

    ... Committee; Transport Airplane Performance and Handling Characteristics--New Task AGENCY: Federal Aviation Administration (FAA), DOT. ACTION: Notice of new task assignment for the Aviation Rulemaking Advisory Committee... findings. The Task The FAA tasked ARAC to consider several areas within the airplane performance and...

  8. Learners’ L1 Use in a Task-based Classroom

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Bao, Rui; Du, Xiangyun

    2015-01-01

    , but with only a very small amount oc- curring for off-task talk across tasks. L1 use mainly occurred in learners’ efforts to mediate completion of the tasks. The findings highlight the role of L1 in foreign language learning and suggest that L1 use is associated with a number of factors, such as task types......’ extensive L1 use and off-task talk. Informed by sociocultural theory, this study explored the extent to which L1s and their func- tions were used when performing tasks. The subjects were beginner-level lower-secondary school learners of Chinese. The data shows that learners have a high amount of L1 use...

  9. Effect of music tempo on task performance.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mayfield, C; Moss, S

    1989-12-01

    Two studies were conducted to evaluate the effect of music tempo on task performance. In Study 1, 44 undergraduate business students were asked to be "workers" in a stock market project by collecting closing stock prices and calculating the percentage of change in the price from week to week. Subjects were randomly divided into groups such that they either listened to fast-paced music while they worked, to slow-paced music, or to no music. Analyses of variance and covariance were conducted on both the quantity and quality of the subjects' work, using music listening habits as a covariate. There were no differences in either the quantity or quality of the work produced by the groups. There were some methodological concerns regarding Study 1, so a second study was conducted. The 70 undergraduate business students in Study 2 completed the same task under the same music conditions as in Study 1. Analyses of variance indicated women performed significantly better than men, performance was significantly higher in the rock condition than in the heartbeat condition, and subjects in the rock condition had a significantly higher perceived level of distraction by the music.

  10. Relationships between Contextual and Task Performance and Interrater Agreement: Are There Any?

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Luis F Díaz-Vilela

    Full Text Available Work performance is one of the most important dependent variables in Work and Organizational Psychology. The main objective of this paper was to explore the relationships between citizenship performance and task performance measures obtained from different appraisers and their consistency through a seldom-used methodology, intraclass correlation coefficients. Participants were 135 public employees, the total staff in a local government department. Jobs were clustered into job families through a work analysis based on standard questionnaires. A task description technique was used to develop a performance appraisal questionnaire for each job family, with three versions: self-, supervisor-, and peer-evaluation, in addition to a measure of citizenship performance. Only when the self-appraisal bias is controlled, significant correlations appeared between task performance rates. However, intraclass correlations analyses show that only self- (contextual and task performance measures are consistent, while interrater agreement disappears. These results provide some interesting clues about the procedure of appraisal instrument development, the role of appraisers, and the importance of choosing adequate consistency analysis methods.

  11. Social Anxiety, Affect, Cortisol Response and Performance on a Speech Task.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Losiak, Wladyslaw; Blaut, Agata; Klosowska, Joanna; Slowik, Natalia

    2016-01-01

    Social anxiety is characterized by increased emotional reactivity to social stimuli, but results of studies focusing on affective reactions of socially anxious subjects in the situation of social exposition are inconclusive, especially in the case of endocrinological measures of affect. This study was designed to examine individual differences in endocrinological and affective reactions to social exposure as well as in performance on a speech task in a group of students (n = 44) comprising subjects with either high or low levels of social anxiety. Measures of salivary cortisol and positive and negative affect were taken before and after an impromptu speech. Self-ratings and observer ratings of performance were also obtained. Cortisol levels and negative affect increased in both groups after the speech task, and positive affect decreased; however, group × affect interactions were not significant. Assessments conducted after the speech task revealed that highly socially anxious participants had lower observer ratings of performance while cortisol increase and changes in self-reported affect were not related to performance. Socially anxious individuals do not differ from nonanxious individuals in affective reactions to social exposition, but reveal worse performance at a speech task. © 2015 S. Karger AG, Basel.

  12. The effect of video game "warm-up" on performance of laparoscopic surgery tasks.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rosser, James C; Gentile, Douglas A; Hanigan, Kevin; Danner, Omar K

    2012-01-01

    Performing laparoscopic procedures requires special training and has been documented as a significant source of surgical errors. "Warming up" before performing a task has been shown to enhance performance. This study investigates whether surgeons benefit from "warming up" using select video games immediately before performing laparoscopic partial tasks and clinical tasks. This study included 303 surgeons (249 men and 54 women). Participants were split into a control (n=180) and an experimental group (n=123). The experimental group played 3 previously validated video games for 6 minutes before task sessions. The Cobra Rope partial task and suturing exercises were performed immediately after the warm-up sessions. Surgeons who played video games prior to the Cobra Rope drill were significantly faster on their first attempt and across all 10 trials. The experimental and control groups were significantly different in their total suturing scores (t=2.28, df=288, Pvideo games prior to performing laparoscopic partial and clinical tasks (intracorporeal suturing) were faster and had fewer errors than participants not engaging in "warm-up." More study is needed to determine whether this translates into superior procedural execution in the clinical setting.

  13. Influence of visual feedback on human task performance in ITER remote handling

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Schropp, Gwendolijn Y.R., E-mail: g.schropp@heemskerk-innovative.nl [Utrecht University, Utrecht (Netherlands); Heemskerk Innovative Technology, Noordwijk (Netherlands); Heemskerk, Cock J.M. [Heemskerk Innovative Technology, Noordwijk (Netherlands); Kappers, Astrid M.L.; Tiest, Wouter M. Bergmann [Helmholtz Institute-Utrecht University, Utrecht (Netherlands); Elzendoorn, Ben S.Q. [FOM-Institute for Plasma Physics Rijnhuizen, Association EURATOM/FOM, Partner in the Trilateral Euregio Clusterand ITER-NL, PO box 1207, 3430 BE Nieuwegein (Netherlands); Bult, David [FOM-Institute for Plasma Physics Rijnhuizen, Association EURATOM/FOM, Partner in the Trilateral Euregio Clusterand ITER-NL, PO box 1207, 3430 BE Nieuwegein (Netherlands)

    2012-08-15

    Highlights: Black-Right-Pointing-Pointer The performance of human operators in an ITER-like test facility for remote handling. Black-Right-Pointing-Pointer Different sources of visual feedback influence how fast one can complete a maintenance task. Black-Right-Pointing-Pointer Insights learned could be used in design of operator work environment or training procedures. - Abstract: In ITER, maintenance operations will be largely performed by remote handling (RH). Before ITER can be put into operation, safety regulations and licensing authorities require proof of maintainability for critical components. Part of the proof will come from using standard components and procedures. Additional verification and validation is based on simulation and hardware tests in 1:1 scale mockups. The Master Slave manipulator system (MS2) Benchmark Product was designed to implement a reference set of maintenance tasks representative for ITER remote handling. Experiments were performed with two versions of the Benchmark Product. In both experiments, the quality of visual feedback varied by exchanging direct view with indirect view (using video cameras) in order to measure and analyze its impact on human task performance. The first experiment showed that both experienced and novice RH operators perform a simple task significantly better with direct visual feedback than with camera feedback. A more complex task showed a large variation in results and could not be completed by many novice operators. Experienced operators commented on both the mechanical design and visual feedback. In a second experiment, a more elaborate task was tested on an improved Benchmark product. Again, the task was performed significantly faster with direct visual feedback than with camera feedback. In post-test interviews, operators indicated that they regarded the lack of 3D perception as the primary factor hindering their performance.

  14. Influence of visual feedback on human task performance in ITER remote handling

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Schropp, Gwendolijn Y.R.; Heemskerk, Cock J.M.; Kappers, Astrid M.L.; Tiest, Wouter M. Bergmann; Elzendoorn, Ben S.Q.; Bult, David

    2012-01-01

    Highlights: ► The performance of human operators in an ITER-like test facility for remote handling. ► Different sources of visual feedback influence how fast one can complete a maintenance task. ► Insights learned could be used in design of operator work environment or training procedures. - Abstract: In ITER, maintenance operations will be largely performed by remote handling (RH). Before ITER can be put into operation, safety regulations and licensing authorities require proof of maintainability for critical components. Part of the proof will come from using standard components and procedures. Additional verification and validation is based on simulation and hardware tests in 1:1 scale mockups. The Master Slave manipulator system (MS2) Benchmark Product was designed to implement a reference set of maintenance tasks representative for ITER remote handling. Experiments were performed with two versions of the Benchmark Product. In both experiments, the quality of visual feedback varied by exchanging direct view with indirect view (using video cameras) in order to measure and analyze its impact on human task performance. The first experiment showed that both experienced and novice RH operators perform a simple task significantly better with direct visual feedback than with camera feedback. A more complex task showed a large variation in results and could not be completed by many novice operators. Experienced operators commented on both the mechanical design and visual feedback. In a second experiment, a more elaborate task was tested on an improved Benchmark product. Again, the task was performed significantly faster with direct visual feedback than with camera feedback. In post-test interviews, operators indicated that they regarded the lack of 3D perception as the primary factor hindering their performance.

  15. Implicit Motives, Explicit Traits, and Task and Contextual Performance at Work

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Lang, J.W.B.; Zettler, Ingo; Ewen, C.

    2012-01-01

    for implicit achievement). As a test of these theoretical ideas, we report a study in which employees (N = 241) filled out a questionnaire booklet and worked on an improved modern implicit motive measure, the operant motive test. Their supervisors rated their task and contextual performance. Results support 4...... apply these ideas in the context of industrial and organizational psychology and propose that 2 explicit traits work as channels for the expression of 3 core implicit motives in task and contextual job performance (extraversion for implicit affiliation and implicit power; explicit achievement...... of the 6 theoretical predictions and show that interactions between implicit motives and explicit traits increase the explained criterion variance in both task and contextual performance....

  16. Investigating conversational dynamics: Interactive alignment, Interpersonal synergy, and collective task performance

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Fusaroli, Riccardo; Tylén, Kristian

    2016-01-01

    This study investigates interpersonal processes underlying dialog by comparing two approaches, interactive alignment and interpersonal synergy, and assesses how they predict collective performance in a joint task. While the interactive alignment approach highlights imitative patterns between...... and their impact on collective performance in a corpus of task-oriented conversations. The results show statistical presence of patterns relevant for both approaches. However, synergetic aspects of dialog provide the best statistical predictors of collective performance and adding aspects of the alignment approach...... does not improve the model. This suggests that structural organization at the level of the interaction plays a crucial role in task-oriented conversations, possibly constraining and integrating processes related to alignment....

  17. Evidence that communication impairment in schizophrenia is associated with generalized poor task performance.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Merrill, Anne M; Karcher, Nicole R; Cicero, David C; Becker, Theresa M; Docherty, Anna R; Kerns, John G

    2017-03-01

    People with schizophrenia exhibit wide-ranging cognitive deficits, including slower processing speed and decreased cognitive control. Disorganized speech symptoms, such as communication impairment, have been associated with poor cognitive control task performance (e.g., goal maintenance and working memory). Whether communication impairment is associated with poorer performance on a broader range of non-cognitive control measures is unclear. In the current study, people with schizophrenia (n =51) and non-psychiatric controls (n =26) completed speech interviews allowing for reliable quantitative assessment of communication impairment. Participants also completed multiple goal maintenance and working memory tasks. In addition, we also examined (a) simple measures of processing speed involving highly automatic prepotent responses and (b) a non-cognitive control measure of general task performance. Schizophrenia communication impairment was significantly associated with poor performance in all cognitive domains, with the largest association found with processing speed (r s =-0.52). Further, communication impairment was also associated with the non-cognitive control measure of poor general task performance (r s =-0.43). In contrast, alogia, a negative speech symptom, and positive symptoms were less if at all related to cognitive task performance. Overall, this study suggests that communication impairment in schizophrenia may be associated with relatively generalized poor cognitive task performance. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Ireland Ltd. All rights reserved.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schiff, Rachel; Katan, Pesia

    2014-01-01

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

  19. Preparatory neural activity predicts performance on a conflict task.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stern, Emily R; Wager, Tor D; Egner, Tobias; Hirsch, Joy; Mangels, Jennifer A

    2007-10-24

    Advance preparation has been shown to improve the efficiency of conflict resolution. Yet, with little empirical work directly linking preparatory neural activity to the performance benefits of advance cueing, it is not clear whether this relationship results from preparatory activation of task-specific networks, or from activity associated with general alerting processes. Here, fMRI data were acquired during a spatial Stroop task in which advance cues either informed subjects of the upcoming relevant feature of conflict stimuli (spatial or semantic) or were neutral. Informative cues decreased reaction time (RT) relative to neutral cues, and cues indicating that spatial information would be task-relevant elicited greater activity than neutral cues in multiple areas, including right anterior prefrontal and bilateral parietal cortex. Additionally, preparatory activation in bilateral parietal cortex and right dorsolateral prefrontal cortex predicted faster RT when subjects responded to spatial location. No regions were found to be specific to semantic cues at conventional thresholds, and lowering the threshold further revealed little overlap between activity associated with spatial and semantic cueing effects, thereby demonstrating a single dissociation between activations related to preparing a spatial versus semantic task-set. This relationship between preparatory activation of spatial processing networks and efficient conflict resolution suggests that advance information can benefit performance by leading to domain-specific biasing of task-relevant information.

  20. Skylab task and work performance /Experiment M-151 - Time and motion study/

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kubis, J. F.; Mclaughlin, E. J.

    1975-01-01

    The primary objective of Experiment M151 was to study the inflight adaptation of Skylab crewmen to a variety of task situations involving different types of activity. A parallel objective was to examine astronaut inflight performance for any behavioral stress effects associated with the working and living conditions of the Skylab environment. Training data provided the basis for comparison of preflight and inflight performance. Efficiency was evaluated through the adaptation function, namely, the relation of performance time over task trials. The results indicate that the initial changeover from preflight to inflight was accompanied by a substantial increase in performance time for most work and task activities. Equally important was the finding that crewmen adjusted rapidly to the weightless environment and became proficient in developing techniques with which to optimize task performance. By the end of the second inflight trial, most of the activities were performed almost as efficiently as on the last preflight trial. The analysis demonstrated the sensitivity of the adaptation function to differences in task and hardware configurations. The function was found to be more regular and less variable inflight than preflight. Translation and control of masses were accomplished easily and efficiently through the rapid development of the arms and legs as subtle guidance and restraint systems.

  1. Self-reported quality of ADL task performance among patients with COPD exacerbations.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bendixen, Hans Jørgen; Wæhrens, Eva Ejlersen; Wilcke, Jon Torgny; Sørensen, Lisbeth Villemoes

    2014-07-01

    Patients suffering from chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) experience problems in the performance of activities of daily living (ADL) tasks. The objective was to examine the self-reported quality of ADL task performance among COPD patients, and to investigate whether age, gender, and routine COPD characteristics correlate with the self-reported ADL ability. Eighty patients admitted to hospital with COPD exacerbations participated. In a cross-sectional study, the patients' self-reported ADL ability was assessed using the ADL-Interview (ADL-I) instrument. Data concerning age, gender, and routine COPD characteristics were drawn from the patients' medical records. The patients reported being inefficient to markedly inefficient when performing ADL tasks within the personal hygiene, toileting, dressing, household, mobility, and transportation domains. While more than 90% of the participants reported increased effort and/or fatigue when performing the ADL tasks, up to 88% of the participants relied on help from others in the performance of general household chores like cooking and shopping. Self-reported ADL ability did not correlate with age, gender, or routine COPD characteristics. Decreased quality of ADL task performance seemed to be extremely common among COPD patients. Therefore, addressing the problems in individually tailored pulmonary rehabilitation programmes may be advantageous.

  2. High variability impairs motor learning regardless of whether it affects task performance.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cardis, Marco; Casadio, Maura; Ranganathan, Rajiv

    2018-01-01

    Motor variability plays an important role in motor learning, although the exact mechanisms of how variability affects learning are not well understood. Recent evidence suggests that motor variability may have different effects on learning in redundant tasks, depending on whether it is present in the task space (where it affects task performance) or in the null space (where it has no effect on task performance). We examined the effect of directly introducing null and task space variability using a manipulandum during the learning of a motor task. Participants learned a bimanual shuffleboard task for 2 days, where their goal was to slide a virtual puck as close as possible toward a target. Critically, the distance traveled by the puck was determined by the sum of the left- and right-hand velocities, which meant that there was redundancy in the task. Participants were divided into five groups, based on both the dimension in which the variability was introduced and the amount of variability that was introduced during training. Results showed that although all groups were able to reduce error with practice, learning was affected more by the amount of variability introduced rather than the dimension in which variability was introduced. Specifically, groups with higher movement variability during practice showed larger errors at the end of practice compared with groups that had low variability during learning. These results suggest that although introducing variability can increase exploration of new solutions, this may adversely affect the ability to retain the learned solution. NEW & NOTEWORTHY We examined the role of introducing variability during motor learning in a redundant task. The presence of redundancy allows variability to be introduced in different dimensions: the task space (where it affects task performance) or the null space (where it does not affect task performance). We found that introducing variability affected learning adversely, but the amount of

  3. Research study on the effects of illumination on performance of control room tasks

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Silverman, E.B.; Horst, R.L.; Parris, H.L.; O'Brien, J.

    1990-01-01

    The illumination in the control rooms of many operating nuclear plants falls below the levels specified in the NUREG-0700 guidelines. However, these guidelines are based on human perception and performance data which were acquired under laboratory conditions and with tasks very different from those typically found in control rooms. The objective of the present studies was to gather empirical data regarding the levels of illumination sufficient for performing tasks analogous to those performed in control rooms. Several tasks were designed to engage the perceptual and cognitive processes that are representative of actual control room performance. In a computerized laboratory test-bed, subjects scanned edgewise meters, examined hard-copy X-Y plots to discern the value of the displayed function at specific coordinates, and proofread hard-copy plant procedures. In a power plant control room simulator, data were likewise collected in a meter reading task and similar tasks representing elements of specific job-performance measures. For each task, response time and accuracy were measured under a range of illumination levels. Subjective comfort ratings were also obtained for each illumination level. The results from both settings indicated that with decreasing illumination, increased errors and/or longer response times occurred only for levels below ten footcandles, if at all. These data suggest that adequate performance in control room tasks can be achieved at illumination levels below those recommended in NUREG-0700

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2013-03-01

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

  5. The Influence of Math Anxiety, Math Performance, Worry, and Test Anxiety on the Iowa Gambling Task and Balloon Analogue Risk Task.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Buelow, Melissa T; Barnhart, Wesley R

    2017-01-01

    Multiple studies have shown that performance on behavioral decision-making tasks, such as the Iowa Gambling Task (IGT) and Balloon Analogue Risk Task (BART), is influenced by external factors, such as mood. However, the research regarding the influence of worry is mixed, and no research has examined the effect of math or test anxiety on these tasks. The present study investigated the effects of anxiety (including math anxiety) and math performance on the IGT and BART in a sample of 137 undergraduate students. Math performance and worry were not correlated with performance on the IGT, and no variables were correlated with BART performance. Linear regressions indicated math anxiety, physiological anxiety, social concerns/stress, and test anxiety significantly predicted disadvantageous selections on the IGT during the transition from decision making under ambiguity to decision making under risk. Implications for clinical evaluation of decision making are discussed. © The Author(s) 2015.

  6. Discrepancy of performance among working memory-related tasks in autism spectrum disorders was caused by task characteristics, apart from working memory, which could interfere with task execution.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nakahachi, Takayuki; Iwase, Masao; Takahashi, Hidetoshi; Honaga, Eiko; Sekiyama, Ryuji; Ukai, Satoshi; Ishii, Ryouhei; Ishigami, Wataru; Kajimoto, Osami; Yamashita, Ko; Hashimoto, Ryota; Tanii, Hisashi; Shimizu, Akira; Takeda, Masatoshi

    2006-06-01

    Working memory performance has been inconsistently reported in autism spectrum disorders (ASD). Several studies in ASD have found normal performance in digit span and poor performance in digit symbol task although these are closely related with working memory. It is assumed that poor performance in digit symbol could be explained by confirmatory behavior, which is induced due to the vague memory representation of number-symbol association. Therefore it was hypothesized that the performance of working memory task, in which vagueness did not cause confirmatory behavior, would be normal in ASD. For this purpose, the Advanced Trail Making Test (ATMT) was used. The performance of digit span, digit symbol and ATMT was compared between ASD and normal control. The digit span, digit symbol and ATMT was given to 16 ASD subjects and 28 IQ-, age- and sex-matched control subjects. The scores of these tasks were compared. A significantly lower score for ASD was found only in digit symbol compared with control subjects. There were no significant difference in digit span and working memory estimated by ATMT. Discrepancy of scores among working memory-related tasks was demonstrated in ASD. Poor digit symbol performance, normal digit span and normal working memory in ATMT implied that ASD subjects would be intact in working memory itself, and that superficial working memory dysfunction might be observed due to confirmatory behavior in digit symbol. Therefore, to evaluate working memory in ASD, tasks that could stimulate psychopathology specific to ASD should be avoided.

  7. The effects of experimental pain and induced optimism on working memory task performance.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Boselie, Jantine J L M; Vancleef, Linda M G; Peters, Madelon L

    2016-07-01

    Pain can interrupt and deteriorate executive task performance. We have previously shown that experimentally induced optimism can diminish the deteriorating effect of cold pressor pain on a subsequent working memory task (i.e., operation span task). In two successive experiments we sought further evidence for the protective role of optimism on pain-induced working memory impairments. We used another working memory task (i.e., 2-back task) that was performed either after or during pain induction. Study 1 employed a 2 (optimism vs. no-optimism)×2 (pain vs. no-pain)×2 (pre-score vs. post-score) mixed factorial design. In half of the participants optimism was induced by the Best Possible Self (BPS) manipulation, which required them to write and visualize about a life in the future where everything turned out for the best. In the control condition, participants wrote and visualized a typical day in their life (TD). Next, participants completed either the cold pressor task (CPT) or a warm water control task (WWCT). Before (baseline) and after the CPT or WWCT participants working memory performance was measured with the 2-back task. The 2-back task measures the ability to monitor and update working memory representation by asking participants to indicate whether the current stimulus corresponds to the stimulus that was presented 2 stimuli ago. Study 2 had a 2 (optimism vs. no-optimism)×2 (pain vs. no-pain) mixed factorial design. After receiving the BPS or control manipulation, participants completed the 2-back task twice: once with painful heat stimulation, and once without any stimulation (counter-balanced order). Continuous heat stimulation was used with temperatures oscillating around 1°C above and 1°C below the individual pain threshold. In study 1, the results did not show an effect of cold pressor pain on subsequent 2-back task performance. Results of study 2 indicated that heat pain impaired concurrent 2-back task performance. However, no evidence was found

  8. Effects of the Use of Social Network Sites on Task Performance: Toward a Sustainable Performance in a Distracting Work Environment

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jinyoung Min

    2017-12-01

    Full Text Available As the use of social network sites (SNS has become increasingly prevalent, its effect on sustainable performance has received much attention. The existing literature has taken either a positive or negative view of SNS, arguing that it either decreases performance by taking time and effort away from work, or increases performance by providing social benefits for enhancing performance. In contrast, this experimental study, investigates how SNS use can disturb or enhance the performance of different types of tasks differently, thus influencing the sustainability of task performance. Based on distraction-conflict theory, this study distinguishes between simple and complex tasks, examines the role of SNS, and analyzes data including electroencephalography data captured by a brain-computer interface. The results show that task performance can be sustainable such that SNS use positively influences performance when participants are engaged in a simple task and influences performance neither positively nor negatively when participants are engaged in a complex task. The study finds the former result is attributable to the positive effect of the psychological arousal induced by SNS use and the latter result to the negative effect of the psychological arousal offsetting the positive effect of reduced stress resulting from SNS use.

  9. Roles of Working Memory Performance and Instructional Strategy in Complex Cognitive Task Performance

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cevik, V.; Altun, A.

    2016-01-01

    This study aims to investigate how working memory (WM) performances and instructional strategy choices affect learners' complex cognitive task performance in online environments. Three different e-learning environments were designed based on Merrill's (2006a) model of instructional strategies. The lack of experimental research on his framework is…

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

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Lan, Li; Wargocki, Pawel; Lian, Zhiwei

    2014-01-01

    We have proposed a method in which the speed and accuracy can be integrated into one metric of human performance. This was achieved by designing a performance task in which the subjects receive feedback on their performance by informing them whether they have committed errors, and if did, they can......, 12 subjects performed tasks under two thermal conditions (neutral & warm) repeatedly. The tasks were presented with and without feedback on errors committed, as outlined above. The results indicate that there was a greater decrease in task performance due to thermal discomfort when feedback was given......, compared to the performance of tasks presented without feedback....

  11. Measuring working memory in aphasia: Comparing performance on complex span and N-back tasks

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Maria Ivanova

    2014-04-01

    No significant correlations were observed between performance on complex span task and N-back tasks.Furthermore, performance on the modified listening span was related to performance on the comprehension subtest of the QASA, while no relationship was found for 2-back and 0-back tasks.Our results mirror studies in healthy controls that demonstrated no relationship between performance on the two tasks(Jaeggi et al., 2010; Kane et al., 2007. Thus although N-back tasks seem similar to traditional complex span measures and may also index abilities related to cognitive processing, the evidence to date does not warrant their direct association with the construct of WM. Implications for future investigation of cognitive deficits in aphasia will be discussed.

  12. Predictors of Processing-Based Task Performance in Bilingual and Monolingual Children

    Science.gov (United States)

    Buac, Milijana; Gross, Megan; Kaushanskaya, Margarita

    2016-01-01

    In the present study we examined performance of bilingual Spanish-English-speaking and monolingual English-speaking school-age children on a range of processing-based measures within the framework of Baddeley’s working memory model. The processing-based measures included measures of short-term memory, measures of working memory, and a novel word-learning task. Results revealed that monolinguals outperformed bilinguals on the short-term memory tasks but not the working memory and novel word-learning tasks. Further, children’s vocabulary skills and socioeconomic status (SES) were more predictive of processing-based task performance in the bilingual group than the monolingual group. Together, these findings indicate that processing-based tasks that engage verbal working memory rather than short-term memory may be better-suited for diagnostic purposes with bilingual children. However, even verbal working memory measures are sensitive to bilingual children’s language-specific knowledge and demographic characteristics, and therefore may have limited clinical utility. PMID:27179914

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2013-01-01

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

  14. A comparison of the effects of a secondary task and lorazepam on cognitive performance.

    Science.gov (United States)

    File, S E

    1992-01-01

    In order to test whether the lorazepam-induced impairments in a variety of cognitive tasks were similar to those of divided attention, the effects of lorazepam (2.5 mg) in healthy volunteers were compared with those requiring subjects to perform an additional task (detecting silences superimposed onto classical music). Neither treatment impaired implicit memory or judgements of frequency. Both treatments impaired performance in tests of speed, lorazepam having the greatest effect on number cancellation and the additional task having the greatest effect on simple reaction time. Both treatments impaired performance in a coding task, in a test of explicit episodic memory and in judgements of recency (indicating impaired coding of contextual information). Lorazepam significantly reduced performance in a word completion task, but this was unimpaired in the group performing the additional task. In general, the pattern of results suggests that there are similarities between the effects of divided attention and lorazepam treatment, and that lorazepam-induced cognitive impairments are not restricted to explicit tests of episodic memory.

  15. Reward Motivation Enhances Task Coding in Frontoparietal Cortex.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Etzel, Joset A; Cole, Michael W; Zacks, Jeffrey M; Kay, Kendrick N; Braver, Todd S

    2016-04-01

    Reward motivation often enhances task performance, but the neural mechanisms underlying such cognitive enhancement remain unclear. Here, we used a multivariate pattern analysis (MVPA) approach to test the hypothesis that motivation-related enhancement of cognitive control results from improved encoding and representation of task set information. Participants underwent two fMRI sessions of cued task switching, the first under baseline conditions, and the second with randomly intermixed reward incentive and no-incentive trials. Information about the upcoming task could be successfully decoded from cue-related activation patterns in a set of frontoparietal regions typically associated with task control. More critically, MVPA classifiers trained on the baseline session had significantly higher decoding accuracy on incentive than non-incentive trials, with decoding improvement mediating reward-related enhancement of behavioral performance. These results strongly support the hypothesis that reward motivation enhances cognitive control, by improving the discriminability of task-relevant information coded and maintained in frontoparietal brain regions. © The Author 2015. Published by Oxford University Press. All rights reserved. For Permissions, please e-mail: journals.permissions@oup.com.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2017-11-01

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

  17. Do absorption and realistic distraction influence performance of component task surgical procedure?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pluyter, Jon R; Buzink, Sonja N; Rutkowski, Anne-F; Jakimowicz, Jack J

    2010-04-01

    Surgeons perform complex tasks while exposed to multiple distracting sources that may increase stress in the operating room (e.g., music, conversation, and unadapted use of sophisticated technologies). This study aimed to examine whether such realistic social and technological distracting conditions may influence surgical performance. Twelve medical interns performed a laparoscopic cholecystectomy task with the Xitact LC 3.0 virtual reality simulator under distracting conditions (exposure to music, conversation, and nonoptimal handling of the laparoscope) versus nondistracting conditions (control condition) as part of a 2 x 2 within-subject experimental design. Under distracting conditions, the medical interns showed a significant decline in task performance (overall task score, task errors, and operating time) and significantly increased levels of irritation toward both the assistant handling the laparoscope in a nonoptimal way and the sources of social distraction. Furthermore, individual differences in cognitive style (i.e., cognitive absorption and need for cognition) significantly influenced the levels of irritation experienced by the medical interns. The results suggest careful evaluation of the social and technological sources of distraction in the operation room to reduce irritation for the surgeon and provision of proper preclinical laparoscope navigation training to increase security for the patient.

  18. The self in conflict: actors and agency in the mediated sequential Simon task.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Spapé, Michiel M; Ahmed, Imtiaj; Jacucci, Giulio; Ravaja, Niklas

    2015-01-01

    Executive control refers to the ability to withstand interference in order to achieve task goals. The effect of conflict adaptation describes that after experiencing interference, subsequent conflict effects are weaker. However, changes in the source of conflict have been found to disrupt conflict adaptation. Previous studies indicated that this specificity is determined by the degree to which one source causes episodic retrieval of a previous source. A virtual reality version of the Simon task was employed to investigate whether changes in a visual representation of the self would similarly affect conflict adaptation. Participants engaged in a mediated Simon task via 3D "avatar" models that either mirrored the participants' movements, or were presented statically. A retrieval cue was implemented as the identity of the avatar: switching it from a male to a female avatar was expected to disrupt the conflict adaptation effect (CAE). The results show that only in static conditions did the CAE depend on the avatar identity, while in dynamic conditions, changes did not cause disruption. We also explored the effect of conflict and adaptation on the degree of movement made with the task-irrelevant hand and replicated the reaction time pattern. The findings add to earlier studies of source-specific conflict adaptation by showing that a visual representation of the self in action can provide a cue that determines episodic retrieval. Furthermore, the novel paradigm is made openly available to the scientific community and is described in its significance for studies of social cognition, cognitive psychology, and human-computer interaction.

  19. The self in conflict: Actors and agency in the mediated sequential Simon Task

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Michiel M. Spapé

    2015-03-01

    Full Text Available Executive control refers to the ability to withstand interference in order to achieve task goals. The effect of conflict adaptation describes that after experiencing interference, subsequent conflict effects are weaker. However, changes in the source of conflict have been found to disrupt conflict adaptation. Previous studies indicated that this specificity is determined by the degree to which one source causes episodic retrieval of a previous source. A virtual reality version of the Simon task was employed to investigate whether changes in a visual representation of the self would similarly affect conflict adaptation. Participants engaged in a mediated Simon task via 3D avatar models that either mirrored the participants’ movements, or were presented statically. A retrieval cue was implemented as the identity of the avatar: switching it from a male to a female avatar was expected to disrupt the conflict adaptation effect. The results show that only in static conditions did the conflict adaptation effect depend on the avatar identity, while in dynamic conditions, changes did not cause disruption. We also explored the effect of conflict and adaptation on the degree of movement made with the task-irrelevant hand and replicated the reaction time pattern. The findings add to earlier studies of source-specific conflict adaptation by showing that a visual representation of the self in action can provide a cue that determines episodic retrieval. Furthermore, the novel paradigm is made openly available to the scientific community and is described in its significance for studies of social cognition, cognitive psychology and human-computer interaction.

  20. Game elements improve performance in a working memory training task

    OpenAIRE

    Manuel Ninaus; Gonçalo Pereira; René Stefitz; Rui Prada; Ana Paiva; Christa Neuper; Guilherme Wood

    2015-01-01

    The utilization of game elements in a non-game context is currently used in a vast range of different domains. However, research on game elements’ effects in cognitive tasks is still sparse. Thus, in this study we implemented three game elements, namely, progress bar, level indicator, and a thematic setting, in a working memory training task. We evaluated the impact of game elements on user performance and perceived state of flow when compared to a conventional version of the task. Participan...

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2012-02-01

    The neurophysiological mechanisms underlying superior cognitive performance are a research area of high interest. The majority of studies on the brain-performance relationship assessed the effects of capability-related group factors (e.g. talent, gender) on task-related brain activations while only few studies examined the effect of the inherent experimental task performance factor. In this functional MRI study, we combined both approaches and simultaneously assessed the effects of three relatively independent factors on the neurofunctional correlates of mental rotation in same-aged adolescents: math talent (gifted/controls: 17/17), gender (male/female: 16/18) and experimental task performance (median split on accuracy; high/low: 17/17). Better experimental task performance of mathematically gifted vs. control subjects and male vs. female subjects validated the selected paradigm. Activation of the inferior parietal lobule (IPL) was identified as a common effect of mathematical giftedness, gender and experimental task performance. However, multiple linear regression analyses (stepwise) indicated experimental task performance as the only predictor of parietal activations. In conclusion, increased activation of the IPL represents a positive neural correlate of mental rotation performance, irrespective of but consistent with the obtained neurocognitive and behavioral effects of math talent and gender. As experimental performance may strongly affect task-related activations this factor needs to be considered in capability-related group comparison studies on the brain-performance relationship. Copyright © 2011 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  2. The effect of single-task and dual-task balance exercise programs on balance performance in adults with osteoporosis: a randomized controlled preliminary trial.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Konak, H E; Kibar, S; Ergin, E S

    2016-11-01

    Osteoporosis is a serious disease characterized by muscle weakness in the lower extremities, shortened length of trunk, and increased dorsal kyphosis leading to poor balance performance. Although balance impairment increases in adults with osteoporosis, falls and fall-related injuries have been shown to occur mainly during the dual-task performance. Several studies have shown that dual-task performance was improved with specific repetitive dual-task exercises. The aims of this study were to compare the effect of single- and dual-task balance exercise programs on static balance, dynamic balance, and activity-specific balance confidence in adults with osteoporosis and to assess the effectiveness of dual-task balance training on gait speed under dual-task conditions. Older adults (N = 42) (age range, 45-88 years) with osteoporosis were randomly assigned into two groups. Single-task balance training group was given single-task balance exercises for 4 weeks, whereas dual-task balance training group received dual-task balance exercises. Participants received 45-min individualized training session, three times a week. Static balance was evaluated by one-leg stance (OLS) and a kinesthetic ability trainer (KAT) device. Dynamic balance was measured by the Berg Balance Scale (BBS), Time Up and Go (TUG) test, and gait speed. Self-confidence was assessed with the Activities-specific Balance Confidence (ABC-6) scale. Assessments were performed at baseline and after the 4-week program. At the end of the treatment periods, KAT score, BBS score, time in OLS and TUG, gait speeds under single- and dual-task conditions, and ABC-6 scale scores improved significantly in all patients (p gait speeds under single- and dual-task conditions showed significantly greater improvement in the dual-task balance training group than in the single-task balance training group (p gait speeds showed greater improvement following the application of a specific type of dual-task exercise programs

  3. Early Numerical Competence and Number Line Task Performance in Kindergarteners

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fanari, Rachele; Meloni, Carla; Massidda, Davide

    2017-01-01

    This work aims to evaluate the relationship between early numerical competence in kindergarteners and their numerical representations as measured by the number line task (NLT). Thirty-four 5-year-old children participated in the study. Children's early performance on symbolic and non-symbolic numerical tasks was considered to determine which was a…

  4. Impact of time on task on ADHD patient's performances in a virtual classroom.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bioulac, Stéphanie; Lallemand, Stéphanie; Rizzo, Albert; Philip, Pierre; Fabrigoule, Colette; Bouvard, Manuel Pierre

    2012-09-01

    Use of virtual reality tool is interesting for the evaluation of Attention Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) patients. The virtual environment offers the opportunity to administer controlled task like the typical neuropsychological tools, but in an environment much more like standard classroom. Previous studies showed that a virtual classroom was able to distinguish performances of children with and without ADHD, but the evolution of performances over time has not been explored. The aim of this work was to study time on task effects on performances of ADHD children compared to controls in a virtual classroom (VC). 36 boys aged from 7 to 10 years completed the virtual classroom task. We compared the performance of the children diagnosed with ADHD with those of the control children. We also compared attentional performances recorded in the virtual classroom with measures of the Continuous Performance Test (CPT II). Our results showed that patients differ from control subjects in term of time effect on performances. If controls sustained performances over time in the virtual reality task, ADHD patients showed a significant performance decrement over time. Performances at the VC correlated with CPT II measures. ADHD children are vulnerable to a time on task effect on performances which could explain part of their difficulties. Virtual reality is a reliable method to test ADHD children ability to sustain performances over time. Copyright © 2012 European Paediatric Neurology Society. Published by Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  5. Children exhibit different performance patterns in explicit and implicit theory of mind tasks.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Oktay-Gür, Nese; Schulz, Alexandra; Rakoczy, Hannes

    2018-04-01

    Three studies tested scope and limits of children's implicit and explicit theory of mind. In Studies 1 and 2, three- to six-year-olds (N = 84) were presented with closely matched explicit false belief tasks that differed in whether or not they required an understanding of aspectuality. Results revealed that children performed equally well in the different tasks, and performance was strongly correlated. Study 3 tested two-year-olds (N = 81) in implicit interactive versions of these tasks and found evidence for dis-unity: children performed competently only in those tasks that did not require an understanding of aspectuality. Taken together, the present findings suggest that early implicit and later explicit theory of mind tasks may tap different forms of cognitive capacities. Copyright © 2018 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

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

    OpenAIRE

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

    2017-01-01

    Dual tasking, or the simultaneous execution of two continuous tasks, is frequently associated with a performance decline that can be explained within a capacity sharing framework. In this study, we assessed the effects of a concurrent motor task on the efficiency of visual information uptake based on the ‘theory of visual attention’ (TVA). TVA provides parameter estimates reflecting distinct components of visual processing capacity: perceptual threshold, visual processing speed, and visual sh...

  7. Dual Arm Work Package performance estimates and telerobot task network simulation

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Draper, J.V.

    1997-01-01

    This paper describes the methodology and results of a network simulation study of the Dual Arm Work Package (DAWP), to be employed for dismantling the Argonne National Laboratory CP-5 reactor. The development of the simulation model was based upon the results of a task analysis for the same system. This study was performed by the Oak Ridge National Laboratory (ORNL), in the Robotics and Process Systems Division. Funding was provided the US Department of Energy's Office of Technology Development, Robotics Technology Development Program (RTDP). The RTDP is developing methods of computer simulation to estimate telerobotic system performance. Data were collected to provide point estimates to be used in a task network simulation model. Three skilled operators performed six repetitions of a pipe cutting task representative of typical teleoperation cutting operations

  8. Sustained and transient attention in the Continuous Performance Task

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Smid, HGOM; de Witte, MR; Homminga, [No Value; van den Bosch, RJ

    One of the most frequently applied methods to study abnormal cognition is the Continuous Performance Task (CPT). It is unclear, however, which cognitive functions are engaged in normal CPT performance. The aims of the present study were to identify the neurocognitive functions engaged in the main

  9. Strategic and Unpressured Within-Task Planning and Their Associations with Working Memory

    Science.gov (United States)

    Li, Shaofeng; Fu, Mengxia

    2018-01-01

    This study investigated the comparative effects of strategic and unpressured within-task planning on second language (L2) Chinese oral production and the role of working memory in mediating the effects of the two types of planning. Twenty-nine L2 Chinese learners at a large New Zealand university performed a narrative task after watching a…

  10. Effects of age and auditory and visual dual tasks on closed-road driving performance.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chaparro, Alex; Wood, Joanne M; Carberry, Trent

    2005-08-01

    This study investigated how driving performance of young and old participants is affected by visual and auditory secondary tasks on a closed driving course. Twenty-eight participants comprising two age groups (younger, mean age = 27.3 years; older, mean age = 69.2 years) drove around a 5.1-km closed-road circuit under both single and dual task conditions. Measures of driving performance included detection and identification of road signs, detection and avoidance of large low-contrast road hazards, gap judgment, lane keeping, and time to complete the course. The dual task required participants to verbally report the sums of pairs of single-digit numbers presented through either a computer speaker (auditorily) or a dashboard-mounted monitor (visually) while driving. Participants also completed a vision and cognitive screening battery, including LogMAR visual acuity, Pelli-Robson letter contrast sensitivity, the Trails test, and the Digit Symbol Substitution (DSS) test. Drivers reported significantly fewer signs, hit more road hazards, misjudged more gaps, and increased their time to complete the course under the dual task (visual and auditory) conditions compared with the single task condition. The older participants also reported significantly fewer road signs and drove significantly more slowly than the younger participants, and this was exacerbated for the visual dual task condition. The results of the regression analysis revealed that cognitive aging (measured by the DSS and Trails test) rather than chronologic age was a better predictor of the declines seen in driving performance under dual task conditions. An overall z score was calculated, which took into account both driving and the secondary task (summing) performance under the two dual task conditions. Performance was significantly worse for the auditory dual task compared with the visual dual task, and the older participants performed significantly worse than the young subjects. These findings demonstrate

  11. Do absorption and realistic distraction influence performance of component task surgical procedure?

    OpenAIRE

    Pluyter, J.R.; Buzink, S.N.; Rutkowski, A.F.; Jakimowicz, J.J.

    2009-01-01

    Background. Surgeons perform complex tasks while exposed to multiple distracting sources that may increase stress in the operating room (e.g., music, conversation, and unadapted use of sophisticated technologies). This study aimed to examine whether such realistic social and technological distracting conditions may influence surgical performance. Methods. Twelve medical interns performed a laparoscopic cholecystectomy task with the Xitact LC 3.0 virtual reality simulator under distracting con...

  12. Factors Associated With Community Health Worker Performance Differ by Task in a Multi-Tasked Setting in Rural Zimbabwe.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kambarami, Rukundo A; Mbuya, Mduduzi Nn; Pelletier, David; Fundira, Dadirai; Tavengwa, Naume V; Stoltzfus, Rebecca J

    2016-06-20

    Zimbabwe, like most low-income countries, faces health worker shortages. Community health workers (CHWs) bridge this gap by delivering essential health services and nutrition interventions to communities. However, as workloads increase, CHWs' ability to provide quality services may be compromised. We studied influences upon CHWs' performance related to pregnancy surveillance and nutrition and hygiene education in rural Zimbabwe. In the context of a cluster-randomized trial conducted in 2 rural districts between November 2012 and March 2015, 342 government-employed CHWs identified and referred pregnant women for early antenatal care and delivered household-level behavior change lessons about infant feeding and hygiene to more than 5,000 women. In 2013, we conducted a survey among 322 of the CHWs to assess the association between demographic and work characteristics and task performance. Exploratory factor analyses of the Likert-type survey questions produced 8 distinct and reliable constructs of job satisfaction and motivation, supervision, peer support, and feedback (Cronbach α range, 0.68 to 0.92). Pregnancy surveillance performance was assessed from pregnancy referrals, and nutrition and hygiene education performance was assessed by taking the average summative score (range, 5 to 30) of lesson delivery observations completed by a nurse supervisor using a 6-item Likert-type checklist. Poisson and multiple linear regressions were used to test associations between CHW demographic and work characteristics and performance. CHWs who referred more pregnant women were female, unmarried, under 40 years old, from larger households, and of longer tenure. They also perceived work resources to be adequate and received positive feedback from supervisors and the community, but they were less satisfied with remuneration. CHWs with high scores on behavior change lesson delivery were from smaller households, and they received more supportive supervision but less operational

  13. Performance on verbal and low-verbal false belief tasks: evidence from children with Williams syndrome.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Van Herwegen, Jo; Dimitriou, Dagmara; Rundblad, Gabriella

    2013-01-01

    Previous studies that have investigated the relationship between performance on theory of mind (ToM) tasks and verbal abilities in individuals with Williams syndrome (WS) have reported contradictory findings with some showing that language abilities aid performance on ToM tasks while others have found that participants with WS fail these tasks because of their verbal demands. The current study investigated this relationship again comparing performance on a classical change-location task to two newly developed low-verbal tasks, one change-location task and one unexpected content task. Thirty children with WS (aged 5-17;01 years) and 30 typically developing (TD) children (aged between 2;10 years and 9;09 years), who were matched for vocabulary comprehension scores were included in the study. Although performance in the WS group was significantly poorer compared to the TD group on all three tasks, performance was not predicted by their receptive vocabulary or grammatical ability scores. In addition, ToM abilities in both groups depended on the cognitive demands of the task at hand. This finding shows that performance on ToM tasks in WS is not necessarily hindered by their delayed language abilities but rather by the task administered. This could potentially affect the diagnosis of developmental disorders, such as Autism Spectrum Disorders, and comparison of ToM abilities across developmental disorders. Readers of this article should be able to (1) describe the current state of theory of mind research in Williams syndrome, (2) identify which cognitive abilities might explain performance on theory of mind tasks in both typically developing children and in children with Williams syndrome, and (3) interpret the importance of task demands when assessing children's theory of mind abilities. Copyright © 2013 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  14. Chew on this: No support for facilitating effects of gum on spatial task performance.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nader, Ingo W; Gittler, Georg; Waldherr, Karin; Pietschnig, Jakob

    2010-09-01

    To determine whether chewing of gum facilitates spatial task performance in healthy participants, two behavioral experiments were performed. In the first experiment, spatial task performance of 349 men and women preceding and after treatment administration (saccharated chewing gum, sugar-free chewing gum, no chewing gum) was assessed using effect modeling by means of Item Response Theory. In the second experiment, another 100 participants were either administered sugar-free chewing gum or no chewing gum during spatial task performance. Effects of gum in the second study were assessed by standard means of data analysis. Results indicated no significant effects of either chewing gum or sugar on spatial task performance in either experiment. Our findings are consistent with recent studies investigating the influences of chewing gum on various memory functions, extending them by another measure of cognitive ability. Thus, further doubt is cast on enhancing effects of chewing gum on cognitive task performance. Copyright 2010 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2015-08-01

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

  16. Social motivation in prospective memory: higher importance ratings and reported performance rates for social tasks.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Penningroth, Suzanna L; Scott, Walter D; Freuen, Margaret

    2011-03-01

    Few studies have addressed social motivation in prospective memory (PM). In a pilot study and two main studies, we examined whether social PM tasks possess a motivational advantage over nonsocial PM tasks. In the pilot study and Study 1, participants listed their real-life important and less important PM tasks. Independent raters categorized the PM tasks as social or nonsocial. Results from both studies showed a higher proportion of tasks rated as social when important tasks were requested than when less important tasks were requested. In Study 1, participants also reported whether they had remembered to perform each PM task. Reported performance rates were higher for tasks rated as social than for those rated as nonsocial. Finally, in Study 2, participants rated the importance of two hypothetical PM tasks, one social and one nonsocial. The social PM task was rated higher in importance. Overall, these findings suggest that social PM tasks are viewed as more important than nonsocial PM tasks and they are more likely to be performed. We propose that consideration of the social relevance of PM will lead to a more complete and ecologically valid theoretical description of PM performance. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2011 APA, all rights reserved).

  17. Performance of children with autism spectrum disorder on advanced theory of mind tasks.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brent, Ella; Rios, Patricia; Happé, Francesca; Charman, Tony

    2004-09-01

    Although a number of advanced theory of mind tasks have been developed, there is sparse information on whether performance on different tasks is associated. The study examined the performance of 20 high-functioning 6- to 12-year-old children with autism spectrum disorder and 20 controls on three high-level theory of mind tasks: Strange Stories, Cartoons and the children's version of the Eyes task. The pattern of findings suggests that the three tasks may share differing, non-specific, information-processing requirements in addition to tapping any putative mentalizing ability. They may also indicate a degree of dissociation between social-cognitive and social-perceptual or affective components of the mentalizing system.

  18. Executive functioning in preschool children: performance on A-not-B and other delayed response format tasks.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Espy, K A; Kaufmann, P M; McDiarmid, M D; Glisky, M L

    1999-11-01

    The A-not-B (AB) task has been hypothesized to measure executive/frontal lobe function; however, the developmental and measurement characteristics of this task have not been investigated. Performances on AB and comparison tasks adapted from developmental and neuroscience literature was examined in 117 preschool children (ages 23-66 months). Age significantly predicted performance on AB, Delayed Alternation, Spatial Reversal, Color Reversal, and Self-Control tasks. A four-factor analytic model best fit task performance data. AB task indices loaded on two factors with measures from the Self-Control and Delayed Alternation tasks, respectively. AB indices did not load with those from the reversal tasks despite similarities in task administration and presumed cognitive demand (working memory). These results indicate that AB is sensitive to individual differences in age-related performance in preschool children and suggest that AB performance is related to both working memory and inhibition processes in this age range.

  19. Functional Magnetic Resonance Imaging Correlates of First-Episode Psychoses during Attentional and Memory Task Performance.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Del Casale, Antonio; Kotzalidis, Georgios D; Rapinesi, Chiara; Sorice, Serena; Girardi, Nicoletta; Ferracuti, Stefano; Girardi, Paolo

    2016-01-01

    The nature of the alteration of the response to cognitive tasks in first-episode psychosis (FEP) still awaits clarification. We used activation likelihood estimation, an increasingly used method in evaluating normal and pathological brain function, to identify activation changes in functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) studies of FEP during attentional and memory tasks. We included 11 peer-reviewed fMRI studies assessing FEP patients versus healthy controls (HCs) during performance of attentional and memory tasks. Our database comprised 290 patients with FEP, matched with 316 HCs. Between-group analyses showed that HCs, compared to FEP patients, exhibited hyperactivation of the right middle frontal gyrus (Brodmann area, BA, 9), right inferior parietal lobule (BA 40), and right insula (BA 13) during attentional task performances and hyperactivation of the left insula (BA 13) during memory task performances. Right frontal, parietal, and insular dysfunction during attentional task performance and left insular dysfunction during memory task performance are significant neural functional FEP correlates. © 2016 S. Karger AG, Basel.

  20. Self-reported Quality of ADL Task Performance in Adults with Schizophrenia

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Nielsen, Kristina Tomra; Petersen, Rikke S.; Wæhrens, Eva Ejlersen

    quality of both personal ADL (PADL) and instrumental ADL (IADL). Aside from decreased independence, the participants also reported problems related to increased effort, increased use of time, and some safety issues. Although most of the participants reported to be competent in relation to PADL tasks......, how they perceive the quality of their performance in terms of effort/fatigue, use of time, safety risks, and need for assistance. The aim was to investigate the self-reported quality of ADL task performance in adults with schizophrenia. Subjects Participants were recruited from October 2013...... evaluation tool developed to describe and measure the quality of ADL task performance in terms of effort/fatigue, use of time, safety risks, and need for assistance based on self-report. Occupational therapists employed at the hospitals and trained in conducting the ADL–I were collecting data. The interviews...

  1. "One Task Fits All"? The Roles of Task Complexity, Modality, and Working Memory Capacity in L2 Performance

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zalbidea, Janire

    2017-01-01

    The present study explores the independent and interactive effects of task complexity and task modality on linguistic dimensions of second language (L2) performance and investigates how these effects are modulated by individual differences in working memory capacity. Thirty-two intermediate learners of L2 Spanish completed less and more complex…

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2010-01-01

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

  3. Planning Abilities in Bilingual and Monolingual Children: Role of Verbal Mediation

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gangopadhyay, Ishanti; McDonald, Margarethe; Ellis Weismer, Susan; Kaushanskaya, Margarita

    2018-01-01

    We examined the role of verbal mediation in planning performance of English–Spanish-speaking bilingual children and monolingual English-speaking children, between the ages of 9 and 12 years. To measure planning, children were administered the Tower of London (ToL) task. In a dual-task paradigm, children completed ToL problems under three conditions: with no secondary task (baseline), with articulatory suppression, and with non-verbal motor suppression. Analyses revealed generally shorter planning times for bilinguals than monolinguals but both groups performed similarly on number of moves and execution times. Additionally, bilingual children were more efficient at planning throughout the duration of the task while monolingual children showed significant gains with more practice. Children’s planning times under articulatory suppression were significantly shorter than under motor suppression as well as the baseline condition, and there was no difference in planning times between monolingual and bilingual children during articulatory suppression. These results demonstrate that bilingualism influences performance on a complex EF measure like planning, and that these effects are not related to verbal mediation. PMID:29593620

  4. Planning Abilities in Bilingual and Monolingual Children: Role of Verbal Mediation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gangopadhyay, Ishanti; McDonald, Margarethe; Ellis Weismer, Susan; Kaushanskaya, Margarita

    2018-01-01

    We examined the role of verbal mediation in planning performance of English-Spanish-speaking bilingual children and monolingual English-speaking children, between the ages of 9 and 12 years. To measure planning, children were administered the Tower of London (ToL) task. In a dual-task paradigm, children completed ToL problems under three conditions: with no secondary task (baseline), with articulatory suppression, and with non-verbal motor suppression. Analyses revealed generally shorter planning times for bilinguals than monolinguals but both groups performed similarly on number of moves and execution times. Additionally, bilingual children were more efficient at planning throughout the duration of the task while monolingual children showed significant gains with more practice. Children's planning times under articulatory suppression were significantly shorter than under motor suppression as well as the baseline condition, and there was no difference in planning times between monolingual and bilingual children during articulatory suppression. These results demonstrate that bilingualism influences performance on a complex EF measure like planning, and that these effects are not related to verbal mediation.

  5. The Effect of Performance-Contingent Incentives when Task Complexity is Manipulated through Instruction

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Monte Wynder

    2010-12-01

    Full Text Available When, and how, performance-contingent incentives improve performance is an important question fororganisations. Empirical results have been mixed – performance-contingent incentives sometimes increaseperformance, sometimes decrease performance, and sometimes have no effect. Theorists have called forfurther research to identify the effect of various moderating variables, including knowledge and taskcomplexity. This study responds by considering the role of instruction in providing the necessary knowledgeto reduce task complexity. The results suggest that a performance-contingent penalty can be a particularlyeffective means of directing effort for a simple task. For a complex task, performance can be improvedthrough instruction. The type of instruction is important – with rule-based instruction effectively directingeffort – however principle-based instruction is necessary to facilitate problem investigation and problemsolving.

  6. Impact of cardiac symptoms on self-reported household task performance in women with coronary artery disease.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kimble, L P

    2001-01-01

    Household tasks are highly salient physical activities for women. Inability to perform household tasks may serve as an important marker of limitations imposed by cardiac symptoms. The purpose of this study was to examine the impact of cardiac symptoms on perceived ability to perform household tasks in women with coronary artery disease and to examine relationships among age, whether the woman lived alone, ability to perform household tasks, and cardiac-related quality of life. Forty-one women with confirmed diagnosis of coronary artery disease and a mean age of 66 years (SD 12 years) were interviewed about the impact of their cardiac symptoms and perceived ability to perform household tasks (Household Activities Scale) and cardiac-related quality of life (Seattle Angina Questionnaire). The women were primarily white (89.4%) and retired (65.9%). Forty-six percent were married, and 26.8% lived alone. "Washing dishes" (51.3%) was the only task a majority of the sample could perform without limitation. Household tasks most commonly reported as no longer performed included carrying laundry (24.4%), vacuuming (30.0%), and scrubbing the floor (51.2%). The task most commonly modified because of cardiac symptoms was changing bed linens (60%). Of the 14 household tasks, women performed a mean of 3.39 (SD 3.36) activities without difficulty. Total number of household activities performed without difficulty was associated with better quality of life in the area of exertional capacity (r = 0.50, P = 0.001). Women who lived alone reported greater perceived ability to perform household tasks than women who did not live alone (r = 0.31, P = 0.05). Age was not significantly associated with perceived household task performance (r = -0.22, P = 0.17). Women with coronary artery disease (CAD) perceived cardiac symptoms as disrupting their ability to perform household tasks. Future research is needed to determine the independent impact of cardiac symptoms on functional limitations

  7. Serial or overlapping processing in multitasking as individual preference: Effects of stimulus preview on task switching and concurrent dual-task performance.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Reissland, Jessika; Manzey, Dietrich

    2016-07-01

    Understanding the mechanisms and performance consequences of multitasking has long been in focus of scientific interest, but has been investigated by three research lines more or less isolated from each other. Studies in the fields of the psychological refractory period, task switching, and interruptions have scored with a high experimental control, but usually do not give participants many degrees of freedom to self-organize the processing of two concurrent tasks. Individual strategies as well as their impact on efficiency have mainly been neglected. Self-organized multitasking has been investigated in the field of human factors, but primarily with respect to overall performance without detailed investigation of how the tasks are processed. The current work attempts to link aspects of these research lines. All of them, explicitly or implicitly, provide hints about an individually preferred type of task organization, either more cautious trying to work strictly serially on only one task at a time or more daring with a focus on task interleaving and, if possible, also partially overlapping (parallel) processing. In two experiments we investigated different strategies of task organization and their impact on efficiency using a new measure of overall multitasking efficiency. Experiment 1 was based on a classical task switching paradigm with two classification tasks, but provided one group of participants with a stimulus preview of the task to switch to next, enabling at least partial overlapping processing. Indeed, this preview led to a reduction of switch costs and to an increase of dual-task efficiency, but only for a subgroup of participants. They obviously exploited the possibility of overlapping processing, while the others worked mainly serially. While task-sequence was externally guided in the first experiment, Experiment 2 extended the approach by giving the participants full freedom of task organization in concurrent performance of the same tasks. Fine

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

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Alkjaer, Tine; Pilegaard, Marianne; Bakke, Merete

    2005-01-01

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

  9. Detection of auditory signals in quiet and noisy backgrounds while performing a visuo-spatial task

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Vishakha W Rawool

    2016-01-01

    Full Text Available Context: The ability to detect important auditory signals while performing visual tasks may be further compounded by background chatter. Thus, it is important to know how task performance may interact with background chatter to hinder signal detection. Aim: To examine any interactive effects of speech spectrum noise and task performance on the ability to detect signals. Settings and Design: The setting was a sound-treated booth. A repeated measures design was used. Materials and Methods: Auditory thresholds of 20 normal adults were determined at 0.5, 1, 2 and 4 kHz in the following conditions presented in a random order: (1 quiet with attention; (2 quiet with a visuo-spatial task or puzzle (distraction; (3 noise with attention and (4 noise with task. Statistical Analysis: Multivariate analyses of variance (MANOVA with three repeated factors (quiet versus noise, visuo-spatial task versus no task, signal frequency. Results: MANOVA revealed significant main effects for noise and signal frequency and significant noise–frequency and task–frequency interactions. Distraction caused by performing the task worsened the thresholds for tones presented at the beginning of the experiment and had no effect on tones presented in the middle. At the end of the experiment, thresholds (4 kHz were better while performing the task than those obtained without performing the task. These effects were similar across the quiet and noise conditions. Conclusion: Detection of auditory signals is difficult at the beginning of a distracting visuo-spatial task but over time, task learning and auditory training effects can nullify the effect of distraction and may improve detection of high frequency sounds.

  10. Neurofeedback training improves the dual-task performance ability in stroke patients.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lee, Young-Shin; Bae, Sea-Hyun; Lee, Sung-Hee; Kim, Kyung-Yoon

    2015-05-01

    Owing to the reduced capacity for information processing following a stroke, patients commonly present with difficulties in performing activities of daily living that combine two or more tasks. To address this problem, in the present study, we investigated the effects of neurofeedback training on the abilities of stroke patients to perform dual motor tasks. We randomly assigned 20 patients who had sustained a stroke within the preceding 6 months to either a pseudo-neurofeedback (n = 10) or neurofeedback (n = 10) group. Both groups participated in a general exercise intervention for 8 weeks, three times a week for 30 min per session, under the same conditions. An electrode was secured to the scalp over the region of the central lobe (Cz), in compliance with the International 10-20 System. The electrode was inactive for the pseudo-training group. Participants in the neurofeedback training group received the 30-min neurofeedback training per session for reinforcing the sensorimotor rhythm. Electroencephalographic activity of the two groups was compared. In addition, selected parameters of gait (velocity, cadence [step/min], stance phase [%], and foot pressure) were analyzed using a 10-m walk test, attention-demanding task, walk task and quantified by the SmartStep system. The neurofeedback group showed significantly improved the regulation of the sensorimotor rhythm (p neurofeedback training is effective to improve the dual-task performance in stroke patients.

  11. Training and performance: The mediating role of organizational learning

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    María Isabel Barba Aragón

    2014-07-01

    Full Text Available Although there is a general recognition in the literature that training improves a firm's performance, empirical research does not always provide evidence to support this effect. One possible explanation is that training does not have a direct effect on performance but an indirect effect by improving other organizational outcomes. This paper suggests that organizational learning is one of those variables and that it mediates the relationship between training and performance and that the adoption of a learning-oriented training enhances performances through its positive effect on organizational learning. Using a sample of Spanish firms we obtain empirical evidence, which supports the view that this mediating effect is present.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2014-01-01

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

  13. The effect of a secondary cognitive task on landing mechanics and jump performance.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dai, Boyi; Cook, Ross F; Meyer, Elizabeth A; Sciascia, Yvonne; Hinshaw, Taylour J; Wang, Chaoyi; Zhu, Qin

    2018-06-01

    Anterior cruciate ligament (ACL) injuries commonly occur during jump-landing tasks when individuals' attention is simultaneously allocated to other objects and tasks. The purpose of the current study was to investigate the effect of allocation of attention imposed by a secondary cognitive task on landing mechanics and jump performance. Thirty-eight recreational athletes performed a jump-landing task in three conditions: no counting, counting backward by 1 s from a randomly given number, and counting backward by 7 s from a randomly given number. Three-dimensional kinematics and ground reaction forces were collected and analysed. Participants demonstrated decreased knee flexion angles at initial contact (p = 0.001) for the counting by 1 s condition compared with the no counting condition. Participants also showed increased peak posterior and vertical ground reaction forces during the first 100 ms of landing (p ≤ 0.023) and decreased jump height (p jump performance. ACL injury risk screening protocols and injury prevention programmes may incorporate cognitive tasks into jump-landing tasks to better simulate sports environments.

  14. An Initial Investigation of Factors Affecting Multi-Task Performance

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Branscome, Tersa A; Swoboda, Jennifer C; Fatkin, Linda T

    2007-01-01

    This report presents the results of the first in a series of investigations designed to increase fundamental knowledge and understanding of the factors affecting multi-task performance in a military environment...

  15. Introducing artificial depth cues to improve task performance in ITER maintenance actions

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Heemskerk, C.J.M.; Eendebak, P.T.; Schropp, G.Y.R.; Hermes, H.V.; Elzendoorn, B.S.Q.; Magielsen, A.J.

    2013-01-01

    Highlights: ► Operators regard lack of 3D perception as primary factor hindering remote maintenance. ► Promising techniques to improve depth perception are depth gauges and stereo vision. ► First experiment shows artificial depth gauges need to be designed with care. ► Second experiment shows that stereo vision improves task performance significantly. -- Abstract: Maintenance operations on ITER tokamak components will be largely performed by remote handling. In previous work it was shown that representative maintenance tasks could be performed significantly faster with direct visual feedback than with camera feedback. In post-test interviews, operators indicated that they regarded the lack of 3D perception as the primary factor hindering their performance. This paper discusses various techniques to improve depth perception in teleoperation, including stereo vision, head tracking, virtual camera views and depth gauges. The most promising techniques were tested. Performance metrics included time-to-complete, path analysis and operator work-load. In a first experiment, artificial depth gauges views were tested in a 1:1 scale hardware testbed with mechanical master-slave manipulators handled by experienced operators. Robust real-time image processing was achieved with marker-based objects. The simple depth gauge and graphical overlay did not significantly improve task performance. Operators commented on their view of the task being “obstructed” by the graphical overlay, and the depth gauge was judged not very informative. In a second experiment, real time tracking was combined with VR display including stereo and head tracking. While stereo was found to improve the task performance significantly over the 1 camera (mono) condition, head tracking unexpectedly did not

  16. Introducing artificial depth cues to improve task performance in ITER maintenance actions

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Heemskerk, C.J.M., E-mail: c.heemskerk@heemskerk-innovative.nl [Heemskerk Innovative Technology, Sassenheim (Netherlands); Eendebak, P.T. [TNO Netherlands Organisation for Applied Scientific Research (Netherlands); Schropp, G.Y.R. [Heemskerk Innovative Technology, Sassenheim (Netherlands); Hermes, H.V. [TU Eindhoven (Netherlands); Elzendoorn, B.S.Q. [FOM Institute DIFFER (Dutch Institute for Fundamental Energy Research), Association EURATOM-FOM, Partner in the Trilateral Euregio Cluster, P.O. Box 1207, 3430 BE Nieuwegein (Netherlands); Magielsen, A.J. [NRG, P.O. Box 25, 1755 ZG Petten (Netherlands)

    2013-10-15

    Highlights: ► Operators regard lack of 3D perception as primary factor hindering remote maintenance. ► Promising techniques to improve depth perception are depth gauges and stereo vision. ► First experiment shows artificial depth gauges need to be designed with care. ► Second experiment shows that stereo vision improves task performance significantly. -- Abstract: Maintenance operations on ITER tokamak components will be largely performed by remote handling. In previous work it was shown that representative maintenance tasks could be performed significantly faster with direct visual feedback than with camera feedback. In post-test interviews, operators indicated that they regarded the lack of 3D perception as the primary factor hindering their performance. This paper discusses various techniques to improve depth perception in teleoperation, including stereo vision, head tracking, virtual camera views and depth gauges. The most promising techniques were tested. Performance metrics included time-to-complete, path analysis and operator work-load. In a first experiment, artificial depth gauges views were tested in a 1:1 scale hardware testbed with mechanical master-slave manipulators handled by experienced operators. Robust real-time image processing was achieved with marker-based objects. The simple depth gauge and graphical overlay did not significantly improve task performance. Operators commented on their view of the task being “obstructed” by the graphical overlay, and the depth gauge was judged not very informative. In a second experiment, real time tracking was combined with VR display including stereo and head tracking. While stereo was found to improve the task performance significantly over the 1 camera (mono) condition, head tracking unexpectedly did not.

  17. Sleep restriction and cognitive load affect performance on a simulated marksmanship task.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Smith, Carl D; Cooper, Adam D; Merullo, Donna J; Cohen, Bruce S; Heaton, Kristin J; Claro, Pedro J; Smith, Tracey

    2017-11-24

    Sleep restriction degrades cognitive and motor performance, which can adversely impact job performance and increase the risk of accidents. Military personnel are prone to operating under sleep restriction, and previous work suggests that military marksmanship may be negatively affected under such conditions. Results of these studies, however, are mixed and have often incorporated additional stressors (e.g. energy restriction) beyond sleep restriction. Moreover, few studies have investigated how the degree of difficulty of a marksmanship task impacts performance following sleep restriction. The purpose of the current experiment was to study the effects of sleep restriction on marksmanship while minimizing the potential influence of other forms of stress. A friend-foe discrimination challenge with greater or lesser degrees of complexity (high versus low load) was used as the primary marksmanship task. Active duty Soldiers were recruited, and allowed 2 h of sleep every 24 h over a 72-h testing period. Marksmanship tasks, cognitive assessment metrics and the NASA-Task Load Index were administered daily. Results indicated that reaction times to shoot foe targets and signal friendly targets slowed over time. In addition, the ability to correctly discriminate between friend and foe targets significantly decreased in the high-cognitive-load condition over time despite shot accuracy remaining stable. The NASA-Task Load Index revealed that, although marksmanship performance degraded, participants believed their performance did not change over time. These results further characterize the consequences of sleep restriction on marksmanship performance and the perception of performance, and reinforce the importance of adequate sleep among service members when feasible. Published 2017. This article is a U.S. Government work and is in the public domain in the USA.

  18. Monitoring User-System Performance in Interactive Retrieval Tasks

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Boldareva, L.; de Vries, A.P.; Hiemstra, Djoerd

    Monitoring user-system performance in interactive search is a challenging task. Traditional measures of retrieval evaluation, based on recall and precision, are not of any use in real time, for they require a priori knowledge of relevant documents. This paper shows how a Shannon entropy-based

  19. Self-Associations Influence Task-Performance through Bayesian Inference.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bengtsson, Sara L; Penny, Will D

    2013-01-01

    The way we think about ourselves impacts greatly on our behavior. This paper describes a behavioral study and a computational model that shed new light on this important area. Participants were primed "clever" and "stupid" using a scrambled sentence task, and we measured the effect on response time and error-rate on a rule-association task. First, we observed a confirmation bias effect in that associations to being "stupid" led to a gradual decrease in performance, whereas associations to being "clever" did not. Second, we observed that the activated self-concepts selectively modified attention toward one's performance. There was an early to late double dissociation in RTs in that primed "clever" resulted in RT increase following error responses, whereas primed "stupid" resulted in RT increase following correct responses. We propose a computational model of subjects' behavior based on the logic of the experimental task that involves two processes; memory for rules and the integration of rules with subsequent visual cues. The model incorporates an adaptive decision threshold based on Bayes rule, whereby decision thresholds are increased if integration was inferred to be faulty. Fitting the computational model to experimental data confirmed our hypothesis that priming affects the memory process. This model explains both the confirmation bias and double dissociation effects and demonstrates that Bayesian inferential principles can be used to study the effect of self-concepts on behavior.

  20. Assessment of Joystick control during the performance of powered wheelchair driving tasks

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Routhier François

    2011-05-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Powered wheelchairs are essential for many individuals who have mobility impairments. Nevertheless, if operated improperly, the powered wheelchair poses dangers to both the user and to those in its vicinity. Thus, operating a powered wheelchair with some degree of proficiency is important for safety, and measuring driving skills becomes an important issue to address. The objective of this study was to explore the discriminate validity of outcome measures of driving skills based on joystick control strategies and performance recorded using a data logging system. Methods We compared joystick control strategies and performance during standardized driving tasks between a group of 10 expert and 13 novice powered wheelchair users. Driving tasks were drawn from the Wheelchair Skills Test (v. 4.1. Data from the joystick controller were collected on a data logging system. Joystick control strategies and performance outcome measures included the mean number of joystick movements, time required to complete tasks, as well as variability of joystick direction. Results In simpler tasks, the expert group's driving skills were comparable to those of the novice group. Yet, in more difficult and spatially confined tasks, the expert group required fewer joystick movements for task completion. In some cases, experts also completed tasks in approximately half the time with respect to the novice group. Conclusions The analysis of joystick control made it possible to discriminate between novice and expert powered wheelchair users in a variety of driving tasks. These results imply that in spatially confined areas, a greater powered wheelchair driving skill level is required to complete tasks efficiently. Based on these findings, it would appear that the use of joystick signal analysis constitutes an objective tool for the measurement of powered wheelchair driving skills. This tool may be useful for the clinical assessment and training of powered

  1. Exploring the Performance Differences on the Flicker Task and the Conners' Continuous Performance Test in Adults with ADHD

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cohen, Andrew L.; Shapiro, Steven K.

    2007-01-01

    Objective: To examine the ability of the flicker task to demonstrate greater utility in discriminating performance in young adults with and without ADHD compared to the Conners' CPT (CCPT). Method: Flicker task and CCPT performance were compared between an ADHD (n = 28) and control (n = 30) group of college students. Results: This study replicated…

  2. The Influence of Feedback on Task-Switching Performance: A Drift Diffusion Modeling Account.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cohen Hoffing, Russell; Karvelis, Povilas; Rupprechter, Samuel; Seriès, Peggy; Seitz, Aaron R

    2018-01-01

    Task-switching is an important cognitive skill that facilitates our ability to choose appropriate behavior in a varied and changing environment. Task-switching training studies have sought to improve this ability by practicing switching between multiple tasks. However, an efficacious training paradigm has been difficult to develop in part due to findings that small differences in task parameters influence switching behavior in a non-trivial manner. Here, for the first time we employ the Drift Diffusion Model (DDM) to understand the influence of feedback on task-switching and investigate how drift diffusion parameters change over the course of task switch training. We trained 316 participants on a simple task where they alternated sorting stimuli by color or by shape. Feedback differed in six different ways between subjects groups, ranging from No Feedback (NFB) to a variety of manipulations addressing trial-wise vs. Block Feedback (BFB), rewards vs. punishments, payment bonuses and different payouts depending upon the trial type (switch/non-switch). While overall performance was found to be affected by feedback, no effect of feedback was found on task-switching learning. Drift Diffusion Modeling revealed that the reductions in reaction time (RT) switch cost over the course of training were driven by a continually decreasing decision boundary. Furthermore, feedback effects on RT switch cost were also driven by differences in decision boundary, but not in drift rate. These results reveal that participants systematically modified their task-switching performance without yielding an overall gain in performance.

  3. Gaming is related to enhanced working memory performance and task-related cortical activity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Moisala, M; Salmela, V; Hietajärvi, L; Carlson, S; Vuontela, V; Lonka, K; Hakkarainen, K; Salmela-Aro, K; Alho, K

    2017-01-15

    Gaming experience has been suggested to lead to performance enhancements in a wide variety of working memory tasks. Previous studies have, however, mostly focused on adult expert gamers and have not included measurements of both behavioral performance and brain activity. In the current study, 167 adolescents and young adults (aged 13-24 years) with different amounts of gaming experience performed an n-back working memory task with vowels, with the sensory modality of the vowel stream switching between audition and vision at random intervals. We studied the relationship between self-reported daily gaming activity, working memory (n-back) task performance and related brain activity measured using functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI). The results revealed that the extent of daily gaming activity was related to enhancements in both performance accuracy and speed during the most demanding (2-back) level of the working memory task. This improved working memory performance was accompanied by enhanced recruitment of a fronto-parietal cortical network, especially the dorsolateral prefrontal cortex. In contrast, during the less demanding (1-back) level of the task, gaming was associated with decreased activity in the same cortical regions. Our results suggest that a greater degree of daily gaming experience is associated with better working memory functioning and task difficulty-dependent modulation in fronto-parietal brain activity already in adolescence and even when non-expert gamers are studied. The direction of causality within this association cannot be inferred with certainty due to the correlational nature of the current study. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  4. An initial test of a normative Figure Of Merit for the quality of overall task performance

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lemay, Moira; Comstock, J. R., Jr.

    1990-01-01

    An overall indicator, or Figure Of Merit (FOM), of the quality of crew/vehicle system performance is needed to establish the effect of workload on efficiency and to identify overload conditions. A normative FOM is proposed in which performance is measured on a representative task and a normative data base obtained. FOMs for subsequent executions of the task are then reported in terms of weighted deviations from average task performance. Performance of discrete tasks is measured primarily in terms of subtask time and errors. Discrete task performance is then combined with a measure of continuous vehicle control. In order to test the normative FOM procedure, the technique was applied to an existing set of data from a simulated landing task in which standard communications with ATC was compared with a data link communications system. The results indicated that while mean task performance was not affected, task variability, as measured by the FOM, was significantly higher when data link communications were used. In order to establish the sensitivity of the normative FOM method, further testing of the measure is recommended.

  5. Methadone disrupts performance on the working memory version of the Morris water task.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hepner, Ilana J; Homewood, Judi; Taylor, Alan J

    2002-05-01

    The aim of the study was to examine if administration of the mu-opiate agonist methadone hydrochloride resulted in deficits in performance on the Morris water tank task, a widely used test of spatial cognition. To this end, after initial training on the task, Long-Evans rats were administered saline or methadone at either 1.25, 2.5 or 5 mg/kg ip 15 min prior to testing. The performance of the highest-dose methadone group was inferior to that of the controls on the working memory version of the Morris task. There were also differences between the groups on the reference memory version of the task, but this result cannot be considered reliable. These data show that methadone has its most profound effect on cognition in rats when efficient performance on the task requires attention to and retention of new information, in this case, the relationship between platform location and the extramaze cues.

  6. Task conflict asymmetries : Effects on expectations and performance

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Jehn, Karen A.; De Wit, Frank R C; Barreto, Manuela; Rink, Floor

    2015-01-01

    Purpose-The purpose of this paper is to examine the effects of asymmetric perceptions of task conflict (i.e. one person experiencing more conflict than the other) on the anticipated relationship with the partner, as well as subjective and objective performance. Design/methodology/approach–In a 2= 2

  7. Trajectories of Resilience during Dyadic Task Performance among Children Six to Seven Years of Age

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mykkänen, Arttu; Kronqvist, Eeva-Liisa; Järvelä, Sanna

    2013-01-01

    The aim of this study is to analyse resilience displayed by young children in dyadic task performance situations. Data were collected by videotaping children (aged six to seven years; N?=?40) during a geometrical task performance. Results describe ways in which children confronted the challenges during task performance, and the order in which the…

  8. Training Sequences and their Effects on Task Performance and User Outcomes

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Sanford, Clive Carlton

    2007-01-01

    This article introduces the concept of information technology (IT) training sequencesand examines how sequencing of conceptual and procedural training impact IT task performance, user satisfaction and users' self-efficacy. Using assimilation theory, we develop four hypotheses related to training...... sequences. These hypotheses were then tested in a database design context using a quasi-experimental study involving student subjects. Empirical results demonstrate improved far-transfer andnear-transfer task performance and higher self-efficacy for subjects trained in the conceptual-procedural sequence vs...

  9. Subjective and objective quantification of physician's workload and performance during radiation therapy planning tasks.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mazur, Lukasz M; Mosaly, Prithima R; Hoyle, Lesley M; Jones, Ellen L; Marks, Lawrence B

    2013-01-01

    To quantify, and compare, workload for several common physician-based treatment planning tasks using objective and subjective measures of workload. To assess the relationship between workload and performance to define workload levels where performance could be expected to decline. Nine physicians performed the same 3 tasks on each of 2 cases ("easy" vs "hard"). Workload was assessed objectively throughout the tasks (via monitoring of pupil size and blink rate), and subjectively at the end of each case (via National Aeronautics and Space Administration Task Load Index; NASA-TLX). NASA-TLX assesses the 6 dimensions (mental, physical, and temporal demands, frustration, effort, and performance); scores > or ≈ 50 are associated with reduced performance in other industries. Performance was measured using participants' stated willingness to approve the treatment plan. Differences in subjective and objective workload between cases, tasks, and experience were assessed using analysis of variance (ANOVA). The correlation between subjective and objective workload measures were assessed via the Pearson correlation test. The relationships between workload and performance measures were assessed using the t test. Eighteen case-wise and 54 task-wise assessments were obtained. Subjective NASA-TLX scores (P .1), were significantly lower for the easy vs hard case. Most correlations between the subjective and objective measures were not significant, except between average blink rate and NASA-TLX scores (r = -0.34, P = .02), for task-wise assessments. Performance appeared to decline at NASA-TLX scores of ≥55. The NASA-TLX may provide a reasonable method to quantify subjective workload for broad activities, and objective physiologic eye-based measures may be useful to monitor workload for more granular tasks within activities. The subjective and objective measures, as herein quantified, do not necessarily track each other, and more work is needed to assess their utilities. From a

  10. Performing a secondary executive task with affective stimuli interferes with decision making under risk conditions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gathmann, Bettina; Pawlikowski, Mirko; Schöler, Tobias; Brand, Matthias

    2014-05-01

    Previous studies demonstrated that executive functions are crucial for advantageous decision making under risk and that therefore decision making is disrupted when working memory capacity is demanded while working on a decision task. While some studies also showed that emotions can affect decision making under risk, it is unclear how affective processing and executive functions predict decision-making performance in interaction. The current experimental study used a between-subjects design to examine whether affective pictures (positive and negative pictures compared to neutral pictures), included in a parallel executive task (working memory 2-back task), have an impact on decision making under risk as assessed by the Game of Dice Task (GDT). Moreover, the performance GDT plus 2-back task was compared to the performance in the GDT without any additional task (GDT solely). The results show that the performance in the GDT differed between groups (positive, negative, neutral, and GDT solely). The groups with affective pictures, especially those with positive pictures in the 2-back task, showed more disadvantageous decisions in the GDT than the groups with neutral pictures and the group performing the GDT without any additional task. However, executive functions moderated the effect of the affective pictures. Regardless of affective influence, subjects with good executive functions performed advantageously in the GDT. These findings support the assumption that executive functions and emotional processing interact in predicting decision making under risk.

  11. A Hybrid Task Graph Scheduler for High Performance Image Processing Workflows.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Blattner, Timothy; Keyrouz, Walid; Bhattacharyya, Shuvra S; Halem, Milton; Brady, Mary

    2017-12-01

    Designing applications for scalability is key to improving their performance in hybrid and cluster computing. Scheduling code to utilize parallelism is difficult, particularly when dealing with data dependencies, memory management, data motion, and processor occupancy. The Hybrid Task Graph Scheduler (HTGS) improves programmer productivity when implementing hybrid workflows for multi-core and multi-GPU systems. The Hybrid Task Graph Scheduler (HTGS) is an abstract execution model, framework, and API that increases programmer productivity when implementing hybrid workflows for such systems. HTGS manages dependencies between tasks, represents CPU and GPU memories independently, overlaps computations with disk I/O and memory transfers, keeps multiple GPUs occupied, and uses all available compute resources. Through these abstractions, data motion and memory are explicit; this makes data locality decisions more accessible. To demonstrate the HTGS application program interface (API), we present implementations of two example algorithms: (1) a matrix multiplication that shows how easily task graphs can be used; and (2) a hybrid implementation of microscopy image stitching that reduces code size by ≈ 43% compared to a manually coded hybrid workflow implementation and showcases the minimal overhead of task graphs in HTGS. Both of the HTGS-based implementations show good performance. In image stitching the HTGS implementation achieves similar performance to the hybrid workflow implementation. Matrix multiplication with HTGS achieves 1.3× and 1.8× speedup over the multi-threaded OpenBLAS library for 16k × 16k and 32k × 32k size matrices, respectively.

  12. Effects of a multicomponent exercise on dual-task performance and executive function among older adults

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ray-Yau Wang

    2018-06-01

    Full Text Available Summary: Background: Previous studies showed that multicomponent exercise enhanced physical and cognitive functions. This study aimed to investigate the effects of a multicomponent exercise on dual-task performance and executive function and to demonstrate the relationship between improvement in dual-task performance and enhancement in executive function among the elderly. Methods: A total of 27 people completed the intervention, with 16 in the experimental group and 11 in the control group. The 12-week multicomponent exercise lasted 1 h per day and 3 days per week. Participants' gait performance was assessed in dual-task conditions and executive function was examined at both pre- and post-intervention. Results: Results showed significant interaction effects of time x group on all selected gait parameters in both dual-task conditions and the Executive Interview. Compared with the control group, the experimental group showed greater improvements in most measures following intervention. Improved dual-task performance was correlated with enhanced executive function (r = 0.46–0.75. Conclusion: Our results suggested that a multicomponent exercise positively affects dual-task performance and executive function in the elderly. Keywords: Dual-task, Executive function, Exercise, Gait, Older adults

  13. The Influence of Feedback on Task-Switching Performance: A Drift Diffusion Modeling Account

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Russell Cohen Hoffing

    2018-02-01

    Full Text Available Task-switching is an important cognitive skill that facilitates our ability to choose appropriate behavior in a varied and changing environment. Task-switching training studies have sought to improve this ability by practicing switching between multiple tasks. However, an efficacious training paradigm has been difficult to develop in part due to findings that small differences in task parameters influence switching behavior in a non-trivial manner. Here, for the first time we employ the Drift Diffusion Model (DDM to understand the influence of feedback on task-switching and investigate how drift diffusion parameters change over the course of task switch training. We trained 316 participants on a simple task where they alternated sorting stimuli by color or by shape. Feedback differed in six different ways between subjects groups, ranging from No Feedback (NFB to a variety of manipulations addressing trial-wise vs. Block Feedback (BFB, rewards vs. punishments, payment bonuses and different payouts depending upon the trial type (switch/non-switch. While overall performance was found to be affected by feedback, no effect of feedback was found on task-switching learning. Drift Diffusion Modeling revealed that the reductions in reaction time (RT switch cost over the course of training were driven by a continually decreasing decision boundary. Furthermore, feedback effects on RT switch cost were also driven by differences in decision boundary, but not in drift rate. These results reveal that participants systematically modified their task-switching performance without yielding an overall gain in performance.

  14. An evaluation of performance by older persons on a simulated telecommuting task.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sharit, Joseph; Czaja, Sara J; Hernandez, Mario; Yang, Yulong; Perdomo, Dolores; Lewis, John E; Lee, Chin Chin; Nair, Sankaran

    2004-11-01

    Telecommuting work represents a strategy for managing the growing number of older people in the workforce. This study involved a simulated customer service telecommuting task that used e-mail to answer customer queries about media-related products and company policies. Participants included 27 "younger" older adults (50-65 years) and 25 "older" older adults (66-80 years). The participants performed the task for two 2-hr sessions a day over 4 consecutive days. Although both age groups showed significant improvement across sessions on many of the performance criteria, in general the improvements were more marked for the older age-group participants. However, the participants from both age groups had difficulty meeting some of the task performance requirements. These results are discussed in terms of training strategies for older workers.

  15. Associations Between Driving Performance and Engaging in Secondary Tasks: A Systematic Review

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ferdinand, Alva O.

    2014-01-01

    We conducted a systematic review and meta-analysis of the literature examining the relationship between driving performance and engaging in secondary tasks. We extracted data from abstracts of 206 empirical articles published between 1968 and 2012 and developed a logistic regression model to identify correlates of a detrimental relationship between secondary tasks and driving performance. Of 350 analyses, 80% reported finding a detrimental relationship. Studies using experimental designs were 37% less likely to report a detrimental relationship (P = .014). Studies examining mobile phone use while driving were 16% more likely to find such a relationship (P = .009). Quasi-experiments can better determine the effects of secondary tasks on driving performance and consequently serve to inform policymakers interested in reducing distracted driving and increasing roadway safety. PMID:24432925

  16. Rapid Authoring of Task Knowledge for Training and Performance Support

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Mohammed, John L; Sorensen, Barbara; Ong, James C; Li, Jian

    2005-01-01

    .... These systems use hierarchical, object-oriented task representations that enable rapid authoring by non-programmers while supporting sophisticated job aiding and student performance evaluation...

  17. How task goals mediate the interplay between perception and action

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Pascal eHaazebroek

    2013-05-01

    Full Text Available Theories of embodied cognition suppose that perception, action and cognition are tightly intertwined and share common representations and processes. Indeed, numerous empirical studies demonstrate interaction between stimulus perception, response planning and response execution. In this paper, we present an experiment and a connectionist model that show how the Simon effect, a canonical example of perception-action congruency, can be moderated by the (cognitive representation of the task instruction. To date, no representational account of this influence exists. In the experiment, a two-dimensional Simon task was used, with critical stimuli being colored arrows pointing in one of four directions (backward, forward, left or right. Participants stood on a Wii balance board, oriented diagonally towards the screen displaying the stimuli. They were either instructed to imagine standing on a snowboard or on a pair of skis and to respond to the stimulus color by leaning towards either the left or right foot. We expected that participants in the snowboard condition would encode these movements as forward or backward, resulting in a Simon effect on this dimension. This was confirmed by the results. The left–right congruency effect was larger in the ski condition, whereas the forward–backward congruency effect appeared only in the snowboard condition. The results can be readily accounted for by HiTEC, a connectionist model that aims at capturing the interaction between perception and action at the level of representations, and the way this interaction is mediated by cognitive control. Together, the empirical work and the connectionist model contribute to a better understanding of the complex interaction between perception, cognition, and action.

  18. Experimental study of the effect of task priority and coordination strategy on crew performance

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Braarud, Per Oeivind; Ludvigsen, Jan Tore

    2002-08-01

    This report documents the background and the results from the Teamwork and Task Management experiment 2001 (TTM-2001) performed in the HAlden Man-Machine LABoratory (HAMMLAB). The experiment emphasises concepts that are suggested as an alternative to the application of general workload measures, namely (1) task management; how operators plan, prioritise and accomplish their tasks individually, and (2) teamwork; coordination of work within the team. The concepts were operationalised for the experimental study by crews operating in accordance with 4 work styles combined from 2 experimental factors: Task Priority and Coordination Strategy. The results indicate that Task Priority has no effect on the operator's ability to handle plant malfunction, but that it increases operator ability to prioritise between the importance of the process data, and increases subjective performance. The results demonstrate that Coordination Strategies significantly improve crew performance. However, contrary to the expectations, there is no clear evidence that coordination supports the operator's situation understanding. The stable characteristics of teamwork observed across different tasks may indicate that teamwork is performed in a procedural way, and as a strategy to cope with a complex and uncertain situation. The practical lessons learned from the experiment were that the crews managed to learn the work styles with the given training and were able to perform the work style of the experimental conditions. Thus, it is possible to carry out studies of important task management and teamwork issues in HAMMLAB. (Author)

  19. Self-associations influence task-performance through Bayesian inference

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sara L Bengtsson

    2013-08-01

    Full Text Available The way we think about ourselves impacts greatly on our behaviour. This paper describes a behavioural study and a computational model that sheds new light on this important area. Participants were primed 'clever' and 'stupid' using a scrambled sentence task, and we measured the effect on response time and error-rate on a rule-association task. First, we observed a confirmation bias effect in that associations to being 'stupid' led to a gradual decrease in performance, whereas associations to being 'clever' did not. Second, we observed that the activated self-concepts selectively modified attention towards one's performance. There was an early to late double dissociation in RTs in that primed 'clever' resulted in RT increase following error responses, whereas primed 'stupid' resulted in RT increase following correct responses. We propose a computational model of subjects' behaviour based on the logic of the experimental task that involves two processes; memory for rules and the integration of rules with subsequent visual cues. The model also incorporates an adaptive decision threshold based on Bayes rule, whereby decision thresholds are increased if integration was inferred to be faulty. Fitting the computational model to experimental data confirmed our hypothesis that priming affects the memory process. This model explains both the confirmation bias and double dissociation effects and demonstrates that Bayesian inferential principles can be used to study the effect of self-concepts on behaviour.

  20. Variations in task constraints shape emergent performance outcomes and complexity levels in balancing.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Caballero Sánchez, Carla; Barbado Murillo, David; Davids, Keith; Moreno Hernández, Francisco J

    2016-06-01

    This study investigated the extent to which specific interacting constraints of performance might increase or decrease the emergent complexity in a movement system, and whether this could affect the relationship between observed movement variability and the central nervous system's capacity to adapt to perturbations during balancing. Fifty-two healthy volunteers performed eight trials where different performance constraints were manipulated: task difficulty (three levels) and visual biofeedback conditions (with and without the center of pressure (COP) displacement and a target displayed). Balance performance was assessed using COP-based measures: mean velocity magnitude (MVM) and bivariate variable error (BVE). To assess the complexity of COP, fuzzy entropy (FE) and detrended fluctuation analysis (DFA) were computed. ANOVAs showed that MVM and BVE increased when task difficulty increased. During biofeedback conditions, individuals showed higher MVM but lower BVE at the easiest level of task difficulty. Overall, higher FE and lower DFA values were observed when biofeedback was available. On the other hand, FE reduced and DFA increased as difficulty level increased, in the presence of biofeedback. However, when biofeedback was not available, the opposite trend in FE and DFA values was observed. Regardless of changes to task constraints and the variable investigated, balance performance was positively related to complexity in every condition. Data revealed how specificity of task constraints can result in an increase or decrease in complexity emerging in a neurobiological system during balance performance.

  1. Merging assistance function with task distribution model to enhance user performance in collaborative virtual environment

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Khalid, S.; Alam, A.

    2016-01-01

    Collaborative Virtual Environments (CVEs) falls under Virtual Reality (VR) where two or more users manipulate objects collaboratively. In this paper we have made some experiments to make assembly from constituents parts scattered in Virtual Environment (VE) based on task distribution model using assistance functions for checking and enhancing user performance. The CVEs subjects setting on distinct connected machines via local area network. In this perspective, we consider the effects of assistance function with oral communication on collaboration, co-presence and users performance. Twenty subjects performed collaboratively an assembly task on static and dynamic based task distribution. We examine the degree of influence of assistance function with oral communications on user's performance based on task distribution model. The results show that assistance functions with oral communication based on task distribution model not only increase user performance but also enhance the sense of copresence and awareness. (author)

  2. Effect of Modality and Task Type on Interlanguage Variation

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kim, Hye Yeong

    2017-01-01

    An essential component for assessing the accuracy and fluency of language learners is understanding how mode of communication and task type affect performance in second-language (L2) acquisition. This study investigates how text-based synchronous computer-mediated communication (SCMC) and face-to-face (F2F) oral interaction can influence the…

  3. Limitations in dual-task performance

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Pannebakker, Merel Mathilde

    2009-01-01

    In this thesis, the effect of information-processing overload on working-memory dependent information processing was examined using dual-task paradigms. The experiments described strengthen the importance of a functional explanation for dual-task limitations. First, it showed evidence for a unified

  4. School Discipline, Investment, Competitiveness and Mediating Educational Performance

    Science.gov (United States)

    Krskova, Hana; Baumann, Chris

    2017-01-01

    Purpose: The purpose of this paper is to combine seemingly unrelated factors to explain global competitiveness. The study argues that school discipline and education investment affect competitiveness with the association being mediated by educational performance. Crucially, diachronic effects of discipline on performance are tested to demonstrate…

  5. A Preliminary Study of Functional Brain Activation among Marijuana Users during Performance of a Virtual Water Maze Task

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jennifer Tropp Sneider

    2013-01-01

    Full Text Available Numerous studies have reported neurocognitive impairments associated with chronic marijuana use. Given that the hippocampus contains a high density of cannabinoid receptors, hippocampal-mediated cognitive functions, including visuospatial memory, may have increased vulnerability to chronic marijuana use. Thus, the current study examined brain activation during the performance of a virtual analogue of the classic Morris water maze task in 10 chronic marijuana (MJ users compared to 18 nonusing (NU comparison subjects. Imaging data were acquired using blood oxygen level-dependent (BOLD functional MRI at 3.0 Tesla during retrieval (hidden platform and motor control (visible platform conditions. While task performance on learning trials was similar between groups, MJ users demonstrated a deficit in memory retrieval. For BOLD fMRI data, NU subjects exhibited greater activation in the right parahippocampal gyrus and cingulate gyrus compared to the MJ group for the Retrieval-Motor Control contrast (NU > MJ. These findings suggest that hypoactivation in MJ users may be due to differences in the efficient utilization of neuronal resources during the retrieval of memory. Given the paucity of data on visuospatial memory function in MJ users, these findings may help elucidate the neurobiological effects of marijuana on brain activation during memory retrieval.

  6. Poststimulation time interval-dependent effects of motor cortex anodal tDCS on reaction-time task performance.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Molero-Chamizo, Andrés; Alameda Bailén, José R; Garrido Béjar, Tamara; García López, Macarena; Jaén Rodríguez, Inmaculada; Gutiérrez Lérida, Carolina; Pérez Panal, Silvia; González Ángel, Gloria; Lemus Corchero, Laura; Ruiz Vega, María J; Nitsche, Michael A; Rivera-Urbina, Guadalupe N

    2018-02-01

    Anodal transcranial direct current stimulation (tDCS) induces long-term potentiation-like plasticity, which is associated with long-lasting effects on different cognitive, emotional, and motor performances. Specifically, tDCS applied over the motor cortex is considered to improve reaction time in simple and complex tasks. The timing of tDCS relative to task performance could determine the efficacy of tDCS to modulate performance. The aim of this study was to compare the effects of a single session of anodal tDCS (1.5 mA, for 15 min) applied over the left primary motor cortex (M1) versus sham stimulation on performance of a go/no-go simple reaction-time task carried out at three different time points after tDCS-namely, 0, 30, or 60 min after stimulation. Performance zero min after anodal tDCS was improved during the whole course of the task. Performance 30 min after anodal tDCS was improved only in the last block of the reaction-time task. Performance 60 min after anodal tDCS was not significantly different throughout the entire task. These findings suggest that the motor cortex excitability changes induced by tDCS can improve motor responses, and these effects critically depend on the time interval between stimulation and task performance.

  7. Task demand, task management, and teamwork

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Braarud, Per Oeivind; Brendryen, Haavar

    2001-03-15

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

  8. The effect of the external regulator's absence on children's speech use, manifested self-regulation, and task performance during learning tasks

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Agina, Adel M.; Agina, Adel Masaud; Kommers, Petrus A.M.; Steehouder, M.F.

    2011-01-01

    The present study was conducted to explore the effect of the absence of the external regulators on children’s use of speech (private/social), task performance, and self-regulation during learning tasks. A novel methodology was employed through a computer-based learning environment that proposed

  9. Unfinished tasks foster rumination and impair sleeping - particularly if leaders have high performance expectations.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Syrek, Christine J; Antoni, Conny H

    2014-10-01

    This study examines the relationship between time pressure and unfinished tasks as work stressors on employee well-being. Relatively little is known about the effect of unfinished tasks on well-being. Specifically, excluding the impact of time pressure, we examined whether the feeling of not having finished the week's tasks fosters perseverative cognitions and impairs sleep. Additionally, we proposed that leader performance expectations moderate these relationships. In more detail, we expected the detrimental effect of unfinished tasks on both rumination and sleep would be enhanced if leader expectations were perceived to be high. In total, 89 employees filled out online diary surveys both before and after the weekend over a 5-week period. Multilevel growth modeling revealed that time pressure and unfinished tasks impacted rumination and sleep on the weekend. Further, our results supported our hypothesis that unfinished tasks explain unique variance in the dependent variables above and beyond the influence of time pressure. Moreover, we found the relationship between unfinished tasks and both rumination and sleep was moderated by leader performance expectations. Our results emphasize the importance of unfinished tasks as a stressor and highlight that leadership, specifically in the form of performance expectations, contributes significantly to the strength of this relationship.

  10. Swimming Pool Hygiene: Self-Monitoring, Task Clarification, and Performance Feedback Increase Lifeguard Cleaning Behaviors

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rose, Henry M. S.; Ludwig, Timothy D.

    2009-01-01

    The effects of task clarification, self-monitoring, and performance feedback on cleaning behaviors of 9 lifeguards in 3 performance areas (vacuuming, lobby tidying, and pool deck maintenance) were investigated using an ABA reversal design at a county swim complex. A specific task in each performance area was used as a behavioral control. Following…

  11. Parent involvement and student academic performance: a multiple mediational analysis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Topor, David R; Keane, Susan P; Shelton, Terri L; Calkins, Susan D

    2010-01-01

    Parent involvement in a child's education is consistently found to be positively associated with a child's academic performance. However, there has been little investigation of the mechanisms that explain this association. The present study examines two potential mechanisms of this association: the child's perception of cognitive competence and the quality of the student-teacher relationship. This study used a sample of 158 seven-year-old participants, their mothers, and their teachers. Results indicated a statistically significant association between parent involvement and a child's academic performance, over and above the impact of the child's intelligence. A multiple mediation model indicated that the child's perception of cognitive competence fully mediated the relation between parent involvement and the child's performance on a standardized achievement test. The quality of the student-teacher relationship fully mediated the relation between parent involvement and teacher ratings of the child's classroom academic performance. Limitations, future research directions, and implications for public policy initiatives are discussed.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2018-02-22

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

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    Minotra, Dev

    2012-01-01

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

  14. When bad stress goes good: increased threat reactivity predicts improved category learning performance.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ell, Shawn W; Cosley, Brandon; McCoy, Shannon K

    2011-02-01

    The way in which we respond to everyday stressors can have a profound impact on cognitive functioning. Maladaptive stress responses in particular are generally associated with impaired cognitive performance. We argue, however, that the cognitive system mediating task performance is also a critical determinant of the stress-cognition relationship. Consistent with this prediction, we observed that stress reactivity consistent with a maladaptive, threat response differentially predicted performance on two categorization tasks. Increased threat reactivity predicted enhanced performance on an information-integration task (i.e., learning is thought to depend upon a procedural-based memory system), and a (nonsignificant) trend for impaired performance on a rule-based task (i.e., learning is thought to depend upon a hypothesis-testing system). These data suggest that it is critical to consider both variability in the stress response and variability in the cognitive system mediating task performance in order to fully understand the stress-cognition relationship.

  15. The influences of obesity and age on functional performance during intermittent upper extremity tasks.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cavuoto, Lora A; Nussbaum, Maury A

    2014-01-01

    In this study, the main and interactive effects of obesity and age on functional performance were assessed during intermittent exertions involving the upper extremity. The prevalence of obesity has doubled over the past 30 years and this increase is associated with higher health care costs, rates of workplace injury, and lost workdays. Obesity and aging can modify job demands and affect worker capacity in terms of muscular and psychomotor function. However, there is a lack of empirical studies quantifying the work-relevant (or ergonomic) impacts related to task demands, capacities, and their potential imbalance. Eight obese and eight non-obese participants from each of two age groups (18-25 and 50-65 years) completed three endurance tasks involving fixed levels of task demands: hand grip, shoulder flexion, and a simulated assembly task using the upper extremity. Measures of functional performance including endurance, discomfort, motor control, and task performance were recorded for each of the task conditions. Endurance times were ∼60% longer for the non-obese group, and older participants had longer endurance times; however there was no evidence of interactive effects of obesity and age. Obesity also impaired functional performance, as indicated by higher rates of strength loss, increases in discomfort, and declines in task performance. These observed impairments may reflect underlying physiological differences among individuals who are obese, but that are independent of age. Obesity-related impairments may have implications for the design of work duration and demand level to prevent fatigue development for workers who are obese.

  16. Effects of Mother-Infant Social Interactions on Infants' Subsequent Contingency Task Performance.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dunham, Philip; Dunham, Frances

    1990-01-01

    Infants participated in a nonsocial contingency task immediately after a social interaction with their mothers. The amount of time mothers and infants spent in a state of vocal turn-taking predicted individual differences in infants' subsequent performance on the contingency task. (PCB)

  17. Identifying optimum performance trade-offs using a cognitively bounded rational analysis model of discretionary task interleaving.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Janssen, Christian P; Brumby, Duncan P; Dowell, John; Chater, Nick; Howes, Andrew

    2011-01-01

    We report the results of a dual-task study in which participants performed a tracking and typing task under various experimental conditions. An objective payoff function was used to provide explicit feedback on how participants should trade off performance between the tasks. Results show that participants' dual-task interleaving strategy was sensitive to changes in the difficulty of the tracking task and resulted in differences in overall task performance. To test the hypothesis that people select strategies that maximize payoff, a Cognitively Bounded Rational Analysis model was developed. This analysis evaluated a variety of dual-task interleaving strategies to identify the optimal strategy for maximizing payoff in each condition. The model predicts that the region of optimum performance is different between experimental conditions. The correspondence between human data and the prediction of the optimal strategy is found to be remarkably high across a number of performance measures. This suggests that participants were honing their behavior to maximize payoff. Limitations are discussed. Copyright © 2011 Cognitive Science Society, Inc.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    Skehan, Peter; Foster, Pauline

    2012-01-01

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

  19. Preempting Performance Challenges: The Effects of Inoculation Messaging on Attacks to Task Self-Efficacy

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jackson, Ben; Compton, Josh; Whiddett, Ryan; Anthony, David R.; Dimmock, James A.

    2015-01-01

    Although inoculation messages have been shown to be effective for inducing resistance to counter-attitudinal attacks, researchers have devoted relatively little attention toward studying the way in which inoculation theory principles might support challenges to psychological phenomena other than attitudes (e.g., self-efficacy). Prior to completing a physical (i.e., balance) task, undergraduates (N = 127, Mage = 19.20, SD = 2.16) were randomly assigned to receive either a control or inoculation message, and reported their confidence in their ability regarding the upcoming task. During the task, a confederate provided standardized negative feedback to all participants regarding their performance, and following the completion of the task, participants again reported their self-efficacy along with measures assessing in-task processes. Findings supported the viability of efficacy inoculation; controlling for pre-task self-efficacy, task performance, and relevant psycho-social variables (e.g., resilience, self-confidence robustness), participants in the inoculation condition reported greater confidence in their ability (i.e., task self-efficacy) than those in the control condition at post-task. Relative to those in the inoculation condition, participants in the control condition also experienced greater concentration disruption and self-presentation concerns during the task. PMID:25898287

  20. The effects of using a portable music player on simulated driving performance and task-sharing strategies.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Young, Kristie L; Mitsopoulos-Rubens, Eve; Rudin-Brown, Christina M; Lenné, Michael G

    2012-07-01

    This study examined the effects of performing scrollable music selection tasks using a portable music player (iPod Touch™) on simulated driving performance and task-sharing strategies, as evidenced through eye glance behaviour and secondary task performance. A total of 37 drivers (18-48 yrs) completed the PC-based MUARC Driver Distraction Test (DDT) while performing music selection tasks on an iPod Touch. Drivers' eye glance behaviour was examined using faceLAB eye tracking equipment. Results revealed that performing music search tasks while driving increased the amount of time that drivers spent with their eyes off the roadway and decreased their ability to maintain a constant lane position and time headway from a lead vehicle. There was also evidence, however, that drivers attempted to regulate their behaviour when distracted by decreasing their speed and taking a large number of short glances towards the device. Overall, results suggest that performing music search tasks while driving is problematic and steps to prohibit this activity should be taken. Copyright © 2011 Elsevier Ltd and The Ergonomics Society. All rights reserved.

  1. How leaders self-regulate their task performance: evidence that power promotes diligence, depletion, and disdain.

    Science.gov (United States)

    DeWall, C Nathan; Baumeister, Roy F; Mead, Nicole L; Vohs, Kathleen D

    2011-01-01

    When leaders perform solitary tasks, do they self-regulate to maximize their effort, or do they reduce effort and conserve their resources? Our model suggests that power motivates self-regulation toward effective performance-unless the task is perceived as unworthy of leaders. Our 1st studies showed that power improves self-regulation and performance, even when resources for self-regulation are low (ego depletion). Additional studies showed that leaders sometimes disdain tasks they deem unworthy, by withholding effort (and therefore performing poorly). Ironically, during ego depletion, leaders skip the appraisal and, therefore, work hard regardless of task suitability, so that depleted leaders sometimes outperform nondepleted ones. Our final studies replicated these patterns with different tasks and even with simple manipulation of framing and perception of the same task (Experiment 5). Experiment 4 also showed that the continued high exertion of leaders when depleted takes a heavy toll, resulting in larger impairments later. The judicious expenditure of self-control resources among powerful people may help them prioritize their efforts to pursue their goals effectively. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2010 APA, all rights reserved).

  2. Structural Design of HRA Database using generic task for Quantitative Analysis of Human Performance

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Kim, Seung Hwan; Kim, Yo Chan; Choi, Sun Yeong; Park, Jin Kyun; Jung Won Dea [KAERI, Daejeon (Korea, Republic of)

    2016-05-15

    This paper describes a design of generic task based HRA database for quantitative analysis of human performance in order to estimate the number of task conductions. The estimation method to get the total task conduction number using direct counting is not easy to realize and maintain its data collection framework. To resolve this problem, this paper suggests an indirect method and a database structure using generic task that enables to estimate the total number of conduction based on instructions of operating procedures of nuclear power plants. In order to reduce human errors, therefore, all information on the human errors taken by operators in the power plant should be systematically collected and examined in its management. Korea Atomic Energy Research Institute (KAERI) is carrying out a research to develop a data collection framework to establish a Human Reliability Analysis (HRA) database that could be employed as technical bases to generate human error probabilities (HEPs) and performance shaping factors (PSFs)]. As a result of the study, the essential table schema was designed to the generic task database which stores generic tasks, procedure lists and task tree structures, and other supporting tables. The number of task conduction based on the operating procedures for HEP estimation was enabled through the generic task database and framework. To verify the framework applicability, case study for the simulated experiments was performed and analyzed using graphic user interfaces developed in this study.

  3. Structural Design of HRA Database using generic task for Quantitative Analysis of Human Performance

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Kim, Seung Hwan; Kim, Yo Chan; Choi, Sun Yeong; Park, Jin Kyun; Jung Won Dea

    2016-01-01

    This paper describes a design of generic task based HRA database for quantitative analysis of human performance in order to estimate the number of task conductions. The estimation method to get the total task conduction number using direct counting is not easy to realize and maintain its data collection framework. To resolve this problem, this paper suggests an indirect method and a database structure using generic task that enables to estimate the total number of conduction based on instructions of operating procedures of nuclear power plants. In order to reduce human errors, therefore, all information on the human errors taken by operators in the power plant should be systematically collected and examined in its management. Korea Atomic Energy Research Institute (KAERI) is carrying out a research to develop a data collection framework to establish a Human Reliability Analysis (HRA) database that could be employed as technical bases to generate human error probabilities (HEPs) and performance shaping factors (PSFs)]. As a result of the study, the essential table schema was designed to the generic task database which stores generic tasks, procedure lists and task tree structures, and other supporting tables. The number of task conduction based on the operating procedures for HEP estimation was enabled through the generic task database and framework. To verify the framework applicability, case study for the simulated experiments was performed and analyzed using graphic user interfaces developed in this study.

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

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Lewis, C.L.

    1995-01-01

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

  5. Grammatical production deficits in PPA: Relating narrative and structured task performance

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Elena Barbieri

    2015-05-01

    Full Text Available Introduction Grammatical production impairments in primary progressive aphasia (PPA have been investigated using structured language tasks and analysis of narrative language samples (for review see Thompson & Mack, 2014; Wilson et al., 2012. However, little research has examined the relationship between them in PPA. Whereas structured tasks often assess production accuracy at different levels of syntactic complexity (e.g., Thompson et al., 2013, narrative measures typically assess overall lexical and grammatical usage (e.g., % grammatical sentences; noun-to-verb ratio, with lesser emphasis on complexity. The present study investigated the relationship between narrative measures of grammatical production and performance on structured language tests in the domains of syntax, verb morphology, and verb-argument structure (VAS. Materials and methods Data from 101 individuals with PPA were included. Participants completed a test battery including the Northwestern Assessment of Verbs and Sentences (NAVS, Thompson, 2011, the Northwestern Assessment of Verb Inflection (NAVI, Lee & Thompson, experimental version and the Northwestern Anagram Test (NAT, Thompson, Weintraub, & Mesulam, 2012. Grammatical production deficits were quantified as follows: for syntax, accuracy of non-canonical sentence production on the NAVS Sentence Production Priming Test (SPPT and the NAT; for morphology, the accuracy on finite verbs on the NAVI; for VAS, the accuracy of sentences produced with 2- and 3-argument verbs on the NAVS Argument Structure Production Test (ASPT. Cinderella narrative samples were analyzed using the Northwestern Narrative Language Analysis system (e.g., Thompson et al., 2012. For syntax, complexity was measured by the ratio of syntactically complex to simple sentences produced, whereas accuracy was indexed by computing the proportion of words with a locally grammatical lexical category. Morphological complexity was measured by mean number of verb

  6. Disentangling task and contextual performance : a multitrait-multimethod approach

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Demerouti, E.; Xanthopoulou, D.; Tsaousis, I.; Bakker, A.B.

    2014-01-01

    This study among 244 employees and their colleagues working in various sectors investigated the dimensionality of self-ratings and peer-ratings of task and contextual performance, using the scales of Goodman and Svyantek (1999). By applying the multitrait-multimethod approach, we examined the degree

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2018-03-08

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

  8. An exploratory study of long-haul truck drivers' secondary tasks and reasons for performing them.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Iseland, Tobias; Johansson, Emma; Skoog, Siri; Dåderman, Anna M

    2018-08-01

    Research on drivers has shown how certain visual-manual secondary tasks, unrelated to driving, increase the risk of being involved in crashes. The purpose of the study was to investigate (1) if long-haul truck drivers in Sweden engage in secondary tasks while driving, what tasks are performed and how frequently, (2) the drivers' self-perceived reason/s for performing them, and (3) if psychological factors might reveal reasons for their engaging in secondary tasks. The study comprised 13 long-haul truck drivers and was conducted through observations, interviews, and questionnaires. The drivers performed secondary tasks, such as work environment related "necessities" (e.g., getting food and/or beverages from the refrigerator/bag, eating, drinking, removing a jacket, face rubbing, and adjusting the seat), interacting with a mobile phone/in-truck technology, and doing administrative tasks. The long-haul truck drivers feel bored and use secondary tasks as a coping strategy to alleviate boredom/drowsiness, and for social interaction. The higher number of performed secondary tasks could be explained by lower age, shorter driver experience, less openness to experience, lower honesty-humility, lower perceived stress, lower workload, and by higher health-related quality of life. These explanatory results may serve as a starting point for further studies on large samples to develop a safer and healthier environment for long-haul truck drivers. Copyright © 2018. Published by Elsevier Ltd.

  9. Self-reported and Observed Quality of ADL Task Performance in Adults with Depression

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Nielsen, Kristina Tomra; Wæhrens, Eva

    diagnosed with depression (range 19-79, median 45,5) Procedure In order to evaluate the participants’ self-reported and observed quality of ADL task performance the ADL-Interview (ADL-I) and the Assessment of Motor and Process Skills (AMPS) were chosen. Both instruments are developed to evaluate and measure...... the quality of ADL task performance. The ADL-I was conducted first and thereby formed the basis for identifying relevant tasks for the AMPS evaluation. Both evaluations were conducted on the same day by trained and calibrated occupational therapists. Results The results indicated that the participants both...

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hammer, R E; Hoffer, N; King, W L

    1995-06-01

    Many researchers have found that more college-age adults than would be expected fail Piaget's water-level task, with women failing more frequently than men. It has been hypothesized that differences in cognitive style may account for performance differences on the water-level task. In the present study, 27 male and 27 female architectural students and 27 male and 27 female liberal-arts students were assessed for their performance on both Piaget's Water-level Task and Witkin's Group Embedded Figures Test. No difference was found in performance of male and female architectural students on either task, but male liberal-arts students scored significantly higher than female liberal-arts students on both measures. A disembedding cognitive style predicted success on the water-level task for the architectural students but not for the liberal arts students.

  11. Cycling in the Absence of Task-related Feedback: Effects on Pacing and Performance

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Benjamin Smits

    2016-08-01

    Full Text Available Introduction. To achieve personal goals in exercise task completion, exercisers have to regulate, distribute and manage their effort. In endurance sports, it has become very commonplace for athletes to consult task-related feedback on external devices to do so. The aim of the present study was to explore the importance of the presence of this information by examining the influence of the absence of commonly available task-related feedback on effort distribution and performance in experienced endurance athletes.Methods. A 20-km cycling time trial was performed. 20 Participants from a homogenous cyclist population were appointed to a group that did not receive any feedback (NoF, or a group that could consult task-related feedback (i.e., speed, heart rate, power output, cadence, elapsed time and elapsed distance continuously during their trial (FF.Results. The distribution of power output (PO differed between groups. Most evident is the spurt at the end of the trial of FF, which was not incorporated by NoF. Nevertheless, no between-group differences were found in performance time (FF: 28.86 +/- 3.68 min vs. NoF: 30.95 +/- 2.77 min and mean PO controlled by body mass (FF: 3.61 +/- .60 W/kg vs. NoF: 3.43 +/- .38 W/kg. Also, no differences in rating of perceived exertion scores were found.Conclusion. The current study provides a first indication that prior knowledge of task demands together with reliance on bodily and environmental information can be sufficient for experienced athletes to come to comparable time trial performances. This questions the necessity of the presence of in-race instantaneous task-related feedback via external devices for maximising performance. Moreover, it seems that different pacing strategies emerge depending on sources of information available to experienced athletes.

  12. Effects of Mindfulness-Based Intervention to Improve Task Performance for Children with Intellectual Disabilities

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kim, Jeongil; Kwon, Miyoung

    2018-01-01

    Background: Task performance is a critical factor for learning in individuals with intellectual disabilities. This study aimed to examine mindfulness-based intervention (MBI) to improve task performance for children with intellectual disability (ID). Methods: Three elementary school children with ID participated in the study. A multiple baseline…

  13. Task-irrelevant novel sounds improve attentional performance in children with and without ADHD

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jana eTegelbeckers

    2016-01-01

    Full Text Available Task-irrelevant salient stimuli involuntarily capture attention and can lead to distraction from an ongoing task, especially in children with ADHD. However, there has been tentative evidence that the presentation of novel sounds can have beneficial effects on cognitive performance. In the present study, we aimed to investigate the influence of novel sounds compared to no sound and a repeatedly presented standard sound on attentional performance in children and adolescents with and without ADHD. We therefore had 32 patients with ADHD and 32 typically developing children and adolescents (8 to 13 years executed a flanker task in which each trial was preceded either by a repeatedly presented standard sound (33%, an unrepeated novel sound (33% or no auditory stimulation (33%. Task-irrelevant novel sounds facilitated attentional performance similarly in children with and without ADHD, as indicated by reduced omission error rates, reaction times, and reaction time variability without compromising performance accuracy. By contrast, standard sounds, while also reducing omission error rates and reaction times, led to increased commission error rates. Therefore, the beneficial effect of novel sounds exceeds cueing of the target display by potentially increased alerting and/or enhanced behavioral control.

  14. Task-related functional connectivity of the caudate mediates the association between trait mindfulness and implicit learning in older adults.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stillman, Chelsea M; You, Xiaozhen; Seaman, Kendra L; Vaidya, Chandan J; Howard, James H; Howard, Darlene V

    2016-08-01

    Accumulating evidence shows a positive relationship between mindfulness and explicit cognitive functioning, i.e., that which occurs with conscious intent and awareness. However, recent evidence suggests that there may be a negative relationship between mindfulness and implicit types of learning, or those that occur without conscious awareness or intent. Here we examined the neural mechanisms underlying the recently reported negative relationship between dispositional mindfulness and implicit probabilistic sequence learning in both younger and older adults. We tested the hypothesis that the relationship is mediated by communication, or functional connectivity, of brain regions once traditionally considered to be central to dissociable learning systems: the caudate, medial temporal lobe (MTL), and prefrontal cortex (PFC). We first replicated the negative relationship between mindfulness and implicit learning in a sample of healthy older adults (60-90 years old) who completed three event-related runs of an implicit sequence learning task. Then, using a seed-based connectivity approach, we identified task-related connectivity associated with individual differences in both learning and mindfulness. The main finding was that caudate-MTL connectivity (bilaterally) was positively correlated with learning and negatively correlated with mindfulness. Further, the strength of task-related connectivity between these regions mediated the negative relationship between mindfulness and learning. This pattern of results was limited to the older adults. Thus, at least in healthy older adults, the functional communication between two interactive learning-relevant systems can account for the relationship between mindfulness and implicit probabilistic sequence learning.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chen, I-Jung; Chang, Chi-Cheng

    2009-01-01

    Introduction: This study explores the relationship among three variables--cognitive load, foreign language anxiety, and task performance. Cognitive load refers to the load imposed on working memory while performing a particular task. The authors hypothesized that anxiety consumes the resources of working memory, leaving less capacity for cognitive…

  16. Predicting Subsequent Task Performance From Goal Motivation and Goal Failure

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Laura Catherine Healy

    2015-07-01

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

  17. Understanding Performance Decrements in a Letter-Canceling Task: Overcoming Habits or Inhibition of Reading.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Myers, Larry; Downie, Steven; Taylor, Grant; Marrington, Jessica; Tehan, Gerald; Ireland, Michael J

    2018-01-01

    The importance of self-regulation in human behavior is readily apparent and diverse theoretical accounts for explaining self-regulation failures have been proposed. Typically, these accounts are based on a sequential task methodology where an initial task is presented to deplete self-regulatory resources, and carryover effects are then examined on a second outcome task. In the aftermath of high profile replication failures using a popular letter-crossing task as a means of depleting self-regulatory resources and subsequent criticisms of that task, current research into self-control is currently at an impasse. This is largely due to the lack of empirical research that tests explicit assumptions regarding the initial task. One such untested assumption is that for resource depletion to occur, the initial task must first establish an habitual response and then this habitual response must be inhibited, with behavioral inhibition being the causal factor in inducing depletion. This study reports on four experiments exploring performance on a letter-canceling task, where the rules for target identification remained constant but the method of responding differed (Experiment 1) and the coherence of the text was manipulated (Experiments 1-4). Experiment 1 established that habit forming and behavioral inhibition did not produce any performance decrement when the targets were embedded in random letter strings. Experiments 2-4 established that target detection was sensitive to language characteristics and the coherence of the background text, suggesting that participants' automatic reading processes is a key driver of performance in the letter-e task.

  18. Group performance and group learning at dynamic system control tasks

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Drewes, Sylvana

    2013-01-01

    Proper management of dynamic systems (e.g. cooling systems of nuclear power plants or production and warehousing) is important to ensure public safety and economic success. So far, research has provided broad evidence for systematic shortcomings in individuals' control performance of dynamic systems. This research aims to investigate whether groups manifest synergy (Larson, 2010) and outperform individuals and if so, what processes lead to these performance advantages. In three experiments - including simulations of a nuclear power plant and a business setting - I compare the control performance of three-person-groups to the average individual performance and to nominal groups (N = 105 groups per experiment). The nominal group condition captures the statistical advantage of aggregated group judgements not due to social interaction. First, results show a superior performance of groups compared to individuals. Second, a meta-analysis across all three experiments shows interaction-based process gains in dynamic control tasks: Interacting groups outperform the average individual performance as well as the nominal group performance. Third, group interaction leads to stable individual improvements of group members that exceed practice effects. In sum, these results provide the first unequivocal evidence for interaction-based performance gains of groups in dynamic control tasks and imply that employers should rely on groups to provide opportunities for individual learning and to foster dynamic system control at its best.

  19. Alterations in Resting-State Activity Relate to Performance in a Verbal Recognition Task

    Science.gov (United States)

    López Zunini, Rocío A.; Thivierge, Jean-Philippe; Kousaie, Shanna; Sheppard, Christine; Taler, Vanessa

    2013-01-01

    In the brain, resting-state activity refers to non-random patterns of intrinsic activity occurring when participants are not actively engaged in a task. We monitored resting-state activity using electroencephalogram (EEG) both before and after a verbal recognition task. We show a strong positive correlation between accuracy in verbal recognition and pre-task resting-state alpha power at posterior sites. We further characterized this effect by examining resting-state post-task activity. We found marked alterations in resting-state alpha power when comparing pre- and post-task periods, with more pronounced alterations in participants that attained higher task accuracy. These findings support a dynamical view of cognitive processes where patterns of ongoing brain activity can facilitate –or interfere– with optimal task performance. PMID:23785436

  20. The correlation between fundamental characteristics and first-time performance in laparoscopic tasks.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Harrington, Cuan M; Bresler, Richard; Ryan, Donncha; Dicker, Patrick; Traynor, Oscar; Kavanagh, Dara O

    2018-04-01

    The ability of characteristics to predict first time performance in laparoscopic tasks is not well described. Videogame experience predicts positive performance in laparoscopic experiences but its mechanism and confounding-association with aptitude remains to be elucidated. This study sought to evaluate for innate predictors of laparoscopic performance in surgically naive individuals with minimal videogame exposure. Participants with no prior laparoscopic exposure and minimal videogaming experience were recruited consecutively from preclinical years at a medical university. Participants completed four visuospatial, one psychomotor aptitude test and an electronic survey, followed by four laparoscopic tasks on a validated Virtual Reality simulator (LAP Mentor™). Twenty eligible individuals participated with a mean age of 20.8 (±3.8) years. Significant intra-aptitude performance correlations were present amongst 75% of the visuospatial tests. These visuospatial aptitudes correlated significantly with multiple laparoscopic task metrics: number of movements of a dominant instrument (r s  ≥ -0.46), accuracy rate of clip placement (r s  ≥ 0.50) and time taken (r s  ≥ -0.47) (p < 0.05). Musical Instrument experience predicted higher average speed of instruments (r s  ≥ 0.47) (p < 0.05). Participant's revised competitive index level predicted lower proficiency in laparoscopic metrics including: pathlength, economy and number of movements of dominant instrument (r s  ≥ 0.46) (p < 0.05). Multiple visuospatial aptitudes and innate competitive level influenced baseline laparoscopic performances across several tasks in surgically naïve individuals. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  1. Skewed task conflicts in teams: What happens when a few members see more conflict than the rest?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sinha, Ruchi; Janardhanan, Niranjan S; Greer, Lindred L; Conlon, Donald E; Edwards, Jeffery R

    2016-07-01

    Task conflict has been the subject of a long-standing debate in the literature-when does task conflict help or hurt team performance? We propose that this debate can be resolved by taking a more precise view of how task conflicts are perceived in teams. Specifically, we propose that in teams, when a few team members perceive a high level of task disagreement while a majority of others perceive low levels of task disagreement-that is, there is positively skewed task conflict, task conflict is most likely to live up to its purported benefits for team performance. In our first study of student teams engaged in a business decision game, we find support for the positive relationship between skewed task conflict and team performance. In our second field study of teams in a financial corporation, we find that the relationship between positively skewed task conflict and supervisor ratings of team performance is mediated by reflective communication within the team. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2016 APA, all rights reserved).

  2. Computational Modeling of Human Multiple-Task Performance and Mental Workload

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Meyer, David

    2004-01-01

    ... (Executive-Process/Interactive Control) was developed, applied to several types of tasks to accurately represent human performance, and inspired to collection of new data that cast new light on the scientific analysis of key phenomena...

  3. The Mozart effect on task performance in a laparoscopic surgical simulator.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wiseman, Michael C

    2013-10-01

    The Mozart Effect is a phenomenon whereby certain pieces of music induce temporary enhancement in "spatial temporal reasoning." To determine whether the Mozart Effect can improve surgical performance, 55 male volunteers (mean age = 20.6 years, range = 16-27), novice to surgery, were timed as they completed an activity course on a laparoscopic simulator. Subjects were then randomized for exposure to 1 of 2 musical pieces by Mozart (n = 21) and Dream Theater (n = 19), after which they repeated the course. Following a 15-minute exposure to a nonmusical piece, subjects were exposed to one of the pieces and performed the activity course a third time. An additional group (n = 15) that was not corandomized performed the tasks without any exposure to music. The percent improvements in completion time between 3 successive trials were calculated for each subject and group means compared. In 2 of the tasks, subjects exposed to the Dream Theater piece achieved approximately 30% more improvement (26.7 ± 8.3%) than those exposed to the Mozart piece (20.2 ± 7.8%, P = .021) or to no music (20.4 ± 9.1%, P = .049). Distinct patterns of covariance between baseline performance and subsequent improvement were observed for the different musical conditions and tasks. The data confirm the existence of a Mozart Effect and demonstrate for the first time its practical applicability. Prior exposure to certain pieces may enhance performance in practical skills requiring spatial temporal reasoning.

  4. The effect of divided attention on novices and experts in laparoscopic task performance.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ghazanfar, Mudassar Ali; Cook, Malcolm; Tang, Benjie; Tait, Iain; Alijani, Afshin

    2015-03-01

    Attention is important for the skilful execution of surgery. The surgeon's attention during surgery is divided between surgery and outside distractions. The effect of this divided attention has not been well studied previously. We aimed to compare the effect of dividing attention of novices and experts on a laparoscopic task performance. Following ethical approval, 25 novices and 9 expert surgeons performed a standardised peg transfer task in a laboratory setup under three randomly assigned conditions: silent as control condition and two standardised auditory distracting tasks requiring response (easy and difficult) as study conditions. Human reliability assessment was used for surgical task analysis. Primary outcome measures were correct auditory responses, task time, number of surgical errors and instrument movements. Secondary outcome measures included error rate, error probability and hand specific differences. Non-parametric statistics were used for data analysis. 21109 movements and 9036 total errors were analysed. Novices had increased mean task completion time (seconds) (171 ± 44SD vs. 149 ± 34, p 0.05). Divided attention conditions in theatre environment require careful consideration during surgical training as the junior surgeons are less able to focus their attention during these conditions.

  5. Career-Oriented Performance Tasks in Chemistry: Effects on Students Integrated Science Process Skills

    OpenAIRE

    Allen A. Espinosa; Sheryl Lyn C. Monterola; Amelia E. Punzalan

    2013-01-01

    The study was conducted to assess the effectiveness of Career-Oriented Performance Task (COPT) approach against the traditional teaching approach (TTA) in enhancing students’ integrated science process skills. Specifically, it sought to find out if students exposed to COPT have higher integrated science process skills than those students exposed to the traditional teaching approach (TTA). Career-Oriented Performance Task (COPT) approach aims to integrate career-oriented examples and inquiry-b...

  6. Electroencephalographic (eeg coherence between visual and motor areas of the left and the right brain hemisphere while performing visuomotor task with the right and the left hand

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Simon Brežan

    2007-09-01

    Full Text Available Background: Unilateral limb movements are based on the activation of contralateral primary motor cortex and the bilateral activation of premotor cortices. Performance of a visuomotor task requires a visuomotor integration between motor and visual cortical areas. The functional integration (»binding« of different brain areas, is probably mediated by the synchronous neuronal oscillatory activity, which can be determined by electroencephalographic (EEG coherence analysis. We introduced a new method of coherence analysis and compared coherence and power spectra in the left and right hemisphere for the right vs. left hand visuomotor task, hypothesizing that the increase in coherence and decrease in power spectra while performing the task would be greater in the contralateral hemisphere.Methods: We analyzed 6 healthy subjects and recorded their electroencephalogram during visuomotor task with the right or the left hand. For data analysis, a special Matlab computer programme was designed. The results were statistically analysed by a two-way analysis of variance, one-way analysis of variance and post-hoc t-tests with Bonferroni correction.Results: We demonstrated a significant increase in coherence (p < 0.05 for the visuomotor task compared to control tasks in alpha (8–13 Hz in beta 1 (13–20 Hz frequency bands between visual and motor electrodes. There were no significant differences in coherence nor power spectra depending on the hand used. The changes of coherence and power spectra between both hemispheres were symmetrical.Conclusions: In previous studies, a specific increase of coherence and decrease of power spectra for the visuomotor task was found, but we found no conclusive asymmetries when performing the task with right vs. left hand. This could be explained in a way that increases in coherence and decreases of power spectra reflect symmetrical activation and cooperation between more complex visual and motor brain areas.

  7. Effects of Refresher Training on Job-Task Typewriting Performance.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hagman, Joseph D.; Schendel, Joel D.

    Two groups of 15 Administrative Specialists, 7lL Military Occupational Speciality (MOS), participated in four job-task refresher training sessions designed to enhance the typewriting of military correspondence. One group performed under a study training method which allowed use of a Correspondence Manual while arranging materials into the correct…

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2013-02-01

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

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Debbie Marianne Yee

    2016-01-01

    Full Text Available It is unequivocal that a wide variety of incentives can motivate behavior. However, few studies have explicitly examined whether and how different incentives are integrated in terms of their motivational influence. The current study examines the combined effects of monetary and liquid incentives on cognitive processing, and whether appetitive and aversive incentives have distinct influences. We introduce a novel task paradigm, in which participants perform cued task-switching for monetary rewards that vary parametrically across trials, with liquid incentives serving as post-trial performance feedback. Critically, the symbolic meaning of the liquid was held constant (indicating successful reward attainment, while liquid valence was blocked. In the first experiment, monetary rewards combined additively with appetitive liquid feedback to improve subject task performance. Aversive liquid feedback counteracted monetary reward effects in low monetary reward trials, particularly in a subset of participants who tended to avoid responding under these conditions. Self-report motivation ratings predicted behavioral performance above and beyond experimental effects. A follow-up experiment replicated the predictive power of motivation ratings even when only appetitive liquids were used, suggesting that ratings reflect idiosyncratic subjective values of, rather than categorical differences between, the liquid incentives. Together, the findings indicate an integrative relationship between primary and secondary incentives and potentially dissociable influences in modulating motivational value, while informing hypotheses regarding candidate neural mechanisms.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2016-01-01

    It is unequivocal that a wide variety of incentives can motivate behavior. However, few studies have explicitly examined whether and how different incentives are integrated in terms of their motivational influence. The current study examines the combined effects of monetary and liquid incentives on cognitive processing, and whether appetitive and aversive incentives have distinct influences. We introduce a novel task paradigm, in which participants perform cued task-switching for monetary rewards that vary parametrically across trials, with liquid incentives serving as post-trial performance feedback. Critically, the symbolic meaning of the liquid was held constant (indicating successful reward attainment), while liquid valence was blocked. In the first experiment, monetary rewards combined additively with appetitive liquid feedback to improve subject task performance. Aversive liquid feedback counteracted monetary reward effects in low monetary reward trials, particularly in a subset of participants who tended to avoid responding under these conditions. Self-report motivation ratings predicted behavioral performance above and beyond experimental effects. A follow-up experiment replicated the predictive power of motivation ratings even when only appetitive liquids were used, suggesting that ratings reflect idiosyncratic subjective values of, rather than categorical differences between, the liquid incentives. Together, the findings indicate an integrative relationship between primary and secondary incentives and potentially dissociable influences in modulating motivational value, while informing hypotheses regarding candidate neural mechanisms. PMID:26834668

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2016-11-01

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

  12. The cortisol awakening response is associated with performance of a serial sequence reaction time task.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hodyl, Nicolette A; Schneider, Luke; Vallence, Ann-Maree; Clow, Angela; Ridding, Michael C; Pitcher, Julia B

    2016-02-01

    There is emerging evidence of a relationship between the cortisol awakening response (CAR) and the neural mechanisms underlying learning and memory. The aim of this study was to determine whether the CAR is associated with acquisition, retention and overnight consolidation or improvement of a serial sequence reaction time task. Salivary samples were collected at 0, 15, 30 and 45 min after awakening in 39 healthy adults on 2 consecutive days. The serial sequence reaction time task was repeated each afternoon. Participants completed the perceived stress scale and provided salivary samples prior to testing for cortisol assessment. While the magnitude of the CAR (Z score) was not associated with either baseline performance or the timed improvement during task acquisition of the serial sequence task, a positive correlation was observed with reaction times during the stable performance phase on day 1 (r=0.373, p=0.019). Residuals derived from the relationship between baseline and stable phase reaction times on day 1 were used as a surrogate for the degree of learning: these residuals were also correlated with the CAR mean increase on day 1 (r=0.357, p=0.048). Task performance on day 2 was not associated with the CAR obtained on this same day. No association was observed between the perceived stress score, cortisol at testing or task performance. These data indicate that a smaller CAR in healthy adults is associated with a greater degree of learning and faster performance of a serial sequence reaction time task. These results support recognition of the CAR as an important factor contributing to cognitive performance throughout the day. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  13. Potential Performance Theory (PPT): A General Theory of Task Performance Applied to Morality

    Science.gov (United States)

    Trafimow, David; Rice, Stephen

    2008-01-01

    People can use a variety of different strategies to perform tasks and these strategies all have two characteristics in common. First, they can be evaluated in comparison with either an absolute or a relative standard. Second, they can be used at varying levels of consistency. In the present article, the authors develop a general theory of task…

  14. Age-Related Changes in Brain Activation Underlying Single- and Dual-Task Performance: Visuomanual Drawing and Mental Arithmetic

    Science.gov (United States)

    Van Impe, A.; Coxon, J. P.; Goble, D. J.; Wenderoth, N.; Swinnen, S. P.

    2011-01-01

    Depending on task combination, dual-tasking can either be performed successfully or can lead to performance decrements in one or both tasks. Interference is believed to be caused by limitations in central processing, i.e. structural interference between the neural activation patterns associated with each task. In the present study, single- and…

  15. Changes in prefrontal neuronal activity after learning to perform a spatial working memory task.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Qi, Xue-Lian; Meyer, Travis; Stanford, Terrence R; Constantinidis, Christos

    2011-12-01

    The prefrontal cortex is considered essential for learning to perform cognitive tasks though little is known about how the representation of stimulus properties is altered by learning. To address this issue, we recorded neuronal activity in monkeys before and after training on a task that required visual working memory. After the subjects learned to perform the task, we observed activation of more prefrontal neurons and increased activity during working memory maintenance. The working memory-related increase in firing rate was due mostly to regular-spiking putative pyramidal neurons. Unexpectedly, the selectivity of neurons for stimulus properties and the ability of neurons to discriminate between stimuli decreased as the information about stimulus properties was apparently present in neural firing prior to training and neuronal selectivity degraded after training in the task. The effect was robust and could not be accounted for by differences in sampling sites, selection of neurons, level of performance, or merely the elapse of time. The results indicate that, in contrast to the effects of perceptual learning, mastery of a cognitive task degrades the apparent stimulus selectivity as neurons represent more abstract information related to the task. This effect is countered by the recruitment of more neurons after training.

  16. Proactive sustainability strategy and corporate sustainability performance: The mediating effect of sustainability control systems.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wijethilake, Chaminda

    2017-07-01

    This study examines to what extent corporations use sustainability control systems (SCS) to translate proactive sustainability strategy into corporate sustainability performance. The study investigates the mediating effect of SCS on the relationship between proactive sustainability strategy and corporate sustainability performance. Survey data were collected from top managers in 175 multinational and local corporations operating in Sri Lanka and analyzed using Partial Least Squares Structural Equation Modeling (PLS-SEM). SCS were observed to only partially mediate the relationship between proactive sustainability strategy and corporate sustainability performance. The mediating effect of SCS is further examined under three sustainability strategies; environmental and social strategies reveal a partial mediation, while the economic strategy exhibits no mediation. The study also finds that (i) a proactive sustainability strategy is positively associated with SCS and corporate sustainability performance and (ii) SCS are positively associated with corporate sustainability performance. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  17. The impact of age, ongoing task difficulty, and cue salience on preschoolers' prospective memory performance: the role of executive function.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mahy, Caitlin E V; Moses, Louis J; Kliegel, Matthias

    2014-11-01

    The current study examined the impact of age, ongoing task (OT) difficulty, and cue salience on 4- and 5-year-old children's prospective memory (PM) and also explored the relation between individual differences in executive function (working memory, inhibition, and shifting) and PM. OT difficulty and cue salience are predicted to affect the detection of PM cues based on the multiprocess framework, yet neither has been thoroughly investigated in young children. OT difficulty was manipulated by requiring children to sort cards according to the size of pictured items (easy) or by opposite size (difficult), and cue salience was manipulated by placing a red border around half of the target cues (salient) and no border around the other cues (non-salient). The 5-year-olds outperformed the 4-year-olds on the PM task, and salient PM cues resulted in better PM cues compared with non-salient cues. There was no main effect of OT difficulty, and the interaction between cue salience and OT difficulty was not significant. However, a planned comparison revealed that the combination of non-salient cues and a difficult OT resulted in significantly worse PM performance than that in all of the other conditions. Inhibition accounted for significant variance in PM performance for non-salient cues and for marginally significant variance for salient cues. Furthermore, individual differences in inhibition fully mediated the effect of age on PM performance. Results are discussed in the context of the multiprocess framework and with reference to preschoolers' difficulty with the executive demands of dividing attention between the OT and PM task. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  18. BDNF mediates improvements in executive function following a 1-year exercise intervention

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Regina Lynn Leckie

    2014-12-01

    Full Text Available Executive function declines with age, but engaging in aerobic exercise may attenuate decline. One mechanism by which aerobic exercise may preserve executive function is through the up-regulation of brain-derived neurotropic factor (BDNF, which also declines with age. The present study examined BDNF as a mediator of the effects of a 1-year walking intervention on executive function in 90 older adults (mean age = 66.82. Participants were randomized to a stretching and toning control group or a moderate intensity walking intervention group. BDNF serum levels and performance on a task-switching paradigm were collected at baseline and follow-up. We found that age moderated the effect of intervention group on changes in BDNF levels, with those in the highest age quartile showing the greatest increase in BDNF after 1-year of moderate intensity walking exercise (p = .036. The mediation analyses revealed that BDNF mediated the effect of the intervention on task-switch accuracy, but did so as a function of age, such that exercise-induced changes in BDNF mediated the effect of exercise on task-switch performance only for individuals over the age of 71. These results demonstrate that both age and BDNF serum levels are important factors to consider when investigating the mechanisms by which exercise interventions influence cognitive outcomes, particularly in elderly populations.

  19. Limitations in dual-task performance

    OpenAIRE

    Pannebakker, Merel Mathilde

    2009-01-01

    In this thesis, the effect of information-processing overload on working-memory dependent information processing was examined using dual-task paradigms. The experiments described strengthen the importance of a functional explanation for dual-task limitations. First, it showed evidence for a unified coding medium (as put forward in the theory of event coding; Hommel, Müsseler, Aschersleben, & Prinz, 2001) in which features, operations and responses are available and can influence each other. A...

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    Edmister, Robert O.; Locke, Edwin A.

    1987-01-01

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

  1. Visual Motor and Perceptual Task Performance in Astigmatic Students

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Erin M. Harvey

    2017-01-01

    Full Text Available Purpose. To determine if spectacle corrected and uncorrected astigmats show reduced performance on visual motor and perceptual tasks. Methods. Third through 8th grade students were assigned to the low refractive error control group (astigmatism < 1.00 D, myopia < 0.75 D, hyperopia < 2.50 D, and anisometropia < 1.50 D or bilateral astigmatism group (right and left eye ≥ 1.00 D based on cycloplegic refraction. Students completed the Beery-Buktenica Developmental Test of Visual Motor Integration (VMI and Visual Perception (VMIp. Astigmats were randomly assigned to testing with/without correction and control group was tested uncorrected. Analyses compared VMI and VMIp scores for corrected and uncorrected astigmats to the control group. Results. The sample included 333 students (control group 170, astigmats tested with correction 75, and astigmats tested uncorrected 88. Mean VMI score in corrected astigmats did not differ from the control group (p=0.829. Uncorrected astigmats had lower VMI scores than the control group (p=0.038 and corrected astigmats (p=0.007. Mean VMIp scores for uncorrected (p=0.209 and corrected astigmats (p=0.124 did not differ from the control group. Uncorrected astigmats had lower mean scores than the corrected astigmats (p=0.003. Conclusions. Uncorrected astigmatism influences visual motor and perceptual task performance. Previously spectacle treated astigmats do not show developmental deficits on visual motor or perceptual tasks when tested with correction.

  2. Performance on a Stage IV Object-Permanence Task with Standard and Nonstandard Covers.

    Science.gov (United States)

    And Others; Rader, Nancy

    1979-01-01

    Examined the role of perceptual-motor development in a typical Stage IV task. The performance of ten infants was compared on a Stage IV object permanence task when a cloth cover was used and when a small card cover was used. (JMB)

  3. A Decline in Response Variability Improves Neural Signal Detection during Auditory Task Performance.

    Science.gov (United States)

    von Trapp, Gardiner; Buran, Bradley N; Sen, Kamal; Semple, Malcolm N; Sanes, Dan H

    2016-10-26

    The detection of a sensory stimulus arises from a significant change in neural activity, but a sensory neuron's response is rarely identical to successive presentations of the same stimulus. Large trial-to-trial variability would limit the central nervous system's ability to reliably detect a stimulus, presumably affecting perceptual performance. However, if response variability were to decrease while firing rate remained constant, then neural sensitivity could improve. Here, we asked whether engagement in an auditory detection task can modulate response variability, thereby increasing neural sensitivity. We recorded telemetrically from the core auditory cortex of gerbils, both while they engaged in an amplitude-modulation detection task and while they sat quietly listening to the identical stimuli. Using a signal detection theory framework, we found that neural sensitivity was improved during task performance, and this improvement was closely associated with a decrease in response variability. Moreover, units with the greatest change in response variability had absolute neural thresholds most closely aligned with simultaneously measured perceptual thresholds. Our findings suggest that the limitations imposed by response variability diminish during task performance, thereby improving the sensitivity of neural encoding and potentially leading to better perceptual sensitivity. The detection of a sensory stimulus arises from a significant change in neural activity. However, trial-to-trial variability of the neural response may limit perceptual performance. If the neural response to a stimulus is quite variable, then the response on a given trial could be confused with the pattern of neural activity generated when the stimulus is absent. Therefore, a neural mechanism that served to reduce response variability would allow for better stimulus detection. By recording from the cortex of freely moving animals engaged in an auditory detection task, we found that variability

  4. The effects of interaction with the device described by procedural text on recall, true/false, and task performance.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Diehl, V A; Mills, C B

    1995-11-01

    In two experiments, subjects interacted to different extents with relevant devices while reading two complex multistep procedural texts and were then tested with task performance time, true/false, and recall measures. While reading, subjects performed the task (read and do), saw the experimenter perform the task (read and see experimenter do), imagined doing the task (read and imagine), looked at the device while reading (read and see), or only read (read only). Van Dijk and Kintsch's (1983) text representation theory led to the prediction that exposure to the task device (in the read-and-do, read-and-see, and read-and-see-experimenter-do conditions) would lead to the development of a stronger situation model and therefore faster task performance, whereas the read-only and read-and-see conditions would lead to a better textbase, and therefore better performance on the true/false and recall tasks. Paivio's (1991) dual coding theory led to the opposite prediction for recall. The results supported the text representation theory with task performance and recall. The read-and-see condition produced consistently good performance on the true/false measure. Amount of text study time contributed to recall performance. These findings support the notion that information available while reading leads to differential development of representations in memory, which, in turn, causes differences in performance on various measures.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2016-01-01

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

  6. Goal striving strategies and effort mobilization: When implementation intentions reduce effort-related cardiac activity during task performance.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Freydefont, Laure; Gollwitzer, Peter M; Oettingen, Gabriele

    2016-09-01

    Two experiments investigate the influence of goal and implementation intentions on effort mobilization during task performance. Although numerous studies have demonstrated the beneficial effects of setting goals and making plans on performance, the effects of goals and plans on effort-related cardiac activity and especially the cardiac preejection period (PEP) during goal striving have not yet been addressed. According to the Motivational Intensity Theory, participants should increase effort mobilization proportionally to task difficulty as long as success is possible and justified. Forming goals and making plans should allow for reduced effort mobilization when participants perform an easy task. However, when the task is difficult, goals and plans should differ in their effect on effort mobilization. Participants who set goals should disengage, whereas participants who made if-then plans should stay in the field showing high effort mobilization during task performance. As expected, using an easy task in Experiment 1, we observed a lower cardiac PEP in both the implementation intention and the goal intention condition than in the control condition. In Experiment 2, we varied task difficulty and demonstrated that while participants with a mere goal intention disengaged from difficult tasks, participants with an implementation intention increased effort mobilization proportionally with task difficulty. These findings demonstrate the influence of goal striving strategies (i.e., mere goals vs. if-then plans) on effort mobilization during task performance. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  7. Response of the medial temporal lobe network in amnestic mild cognitive impairment to therapeutic intervention assessed by fMRI and memory task performance

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Arnold Bakker

    2015-01-01

    Full Text Available Studies of individuals with amnestic mild cognitive impairment (aMCI have detected hyperactivity in the hippocampus during task-related functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI. Such elevated activation has been localized to the hippocampal dentate gyrus/CA3 (DG/CA3 during performance of a task designed to detect the computational contributions of those hippocampal circuits to episodic memory. The current investigation was conducted to test the hypothesis that greater hippocampal activation in aMCI represents a dysfunctional shift in the normal computational balance of the DG/CA3 regions, augmenting CA3-driven pattern completion at the expense of pattern separation mediated by the dentate gyrus. We tested this hypothesis using an intervention based on animal research demonstrating a beneficial effect on cognition by reducing excess hippocampal neural activity with low doses of the atypical anti-epileptic levetiracetam. In a within-subject design we assessed the effects of levetiracetam in three cohorts of aMCI participants, each receiving a different dose of levetiracetam. Elevated activation in the DG/CA3 region, together with impaired task performance, was detected in each aMCI cohort relative to an aged control group. We observed significant improvement in memory task performance under drug treatment relative to placebo in the aMCI cohorts at the 62.5 and 125 mg BID doses of levetiracetam. Drug treatment in those cohorts increased accuracy dependent on pattern separation processes and reduced errors attributable to an over-riding effect of pattern completion while normalizing fMRI activation in the DG/CA3 and entorhinal cortex. Similar to findings in animal studies, higher dosing at 250 mg BID had no significant benefit on either task performance or fMRI activation. Consistent with predictions based on the computational functions of the DG/CA3 elucidated in basic animal research, these data support a dysfunctional encoding mechanism

  8. Effects on automatic attention due to exposure to pictures of emotional faces while performing Chinese word judgment tasks.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Junhong, Huang; Renlai, Zhou; Senqi, Hu

    2013-01-01

    Two experiments were conducted to investigate the automatic processing of emotional facial expressions while performing low or high demand cognitive tasks under unattended conditions. In Experiment 1, 35 subjects performed low (judging the structure of Chinese words) and high (judging the tone of Chinese words) cognitive load tasks while exposed to unattended pictures of fearful, neutral, or happy faces. The results revealed that the reaction time was slower and the performance accuracy was higher while performing the low cognitive load task than while performing the high cognitive load task. Exposure to fearful faces resulted in significantly longer reaction times and lower accuracy than exposure to neutral faces on the low cognitive load task. In Experiment 2, 26 subjects performed the same word judgment tasks and their brain event-related potentials (ERPs) were measured for a period of 800 ms after the onset of the task stimulus. The amplitudes of the early component of ERP around 176 ms (P2) elicited by unattended fearful faces over frontal-central-parietal recording sites was significantly larger than those elicited by unattended neutral faces while performing the word structure judgment task. Together, the findings of the two experiments indicated that unattended fearful faces captured significantly more attention resources than unattended neutral faces on a low cognitive load task, but not on a high cognitive load task. It was concluded that fearful faces could automatically capture attention if residues of attention resources were available under the unattended condition.

  9. Effects of task performance, helping, voice, and organizational loyalty on performance appraisal ratings.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Whiting, Steven W; Podsakoff, Philip M; Pierce, Jason R

    2008-01-01

    Despite the fact that several studies have investigated the relationship between organizational citizenship behavior and performance appraisal ratings, the vast majority of these studies have been cross-sectional, correlational investigations conducted in organizational settings that do not allow researchers to establish the causal nature of this relationship. To address this lack of knowledge regarding causality, the authors conducted 2 studies designed to investigate the effects of task performance, helping behavior, voice, and organizational loyalty on performance appraisal evaluations. Findings demonstrated that each of these forms of behavior has significant effects on performance evaluation decisions and suggest that additional attention should be directed at both voice and organizational loyalty as important forms of citizenship behavior aimed at the organization. 2008 APA

  10. The Regulation of Task Performance: A Trans-disciplinary Review

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ian eClark

    2016-01-01

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

  11. Task Monotony and Performance Efficacy of Mentally Retarded Young Adults.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Locke, Bill J.; And Others

    1982-01-01

    Thirty-six mildly mentally retarded young adults were exposed to one of three training arrangements for vigilance performance, a monitoring task that some professionals consider uniquely appropriate for such persons because they are assumed to be less susceptible to boredom. (Author)

  12. Performance comparison of heuristic algorithms for task scheduling in IaaS cloud computing environment

    Science.gov (United States)

    Madni, Syed Hamid Hussain; Abd Latiff, Muhammad Shafie; Abdullahi, Mohammed; Usman, Mohammed Joda

    2017-01-01

    Cloud computing infrastructure is suitable for meeting computational needs of large task sizes. Optimal scheduling of tasks in cloud computing environment has been proved to be an NP-complete problem, hence the need for the application of heuristic methods. Several heuristic algorithms have been developed and used in addressing this problem, but choosing the appropriate algorithm for solving task assignment problem of a particular nature is difficult since the methods are developed under different assumptions. Therefore, six rule based heuristic algorithms are implemented and used to schedule autonomous tasks in homogeneous and heterogeneous environments with the aim of comparing their performance in terms of cost, degree of imbalance, makespan and throughput. First Come First Serve (FCFS), Minimum Completion Time (MCT), Minimum Execution Time (MET), Max-min, Min-min and Sufferage are the heuristic algorithms considered for the performance comparison and analysis of task scheduling in cloud computing. PMID:28467505

  13. Performance comparison of heuristic algorithms for task scheduling in IaaS cloud computing environment.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Madni, Syed Hamid Hussain; Abd Latiff, Muhammad Shafie; Abdullahi, Mohammed; Abdulhamid, Shafi'i Muhammad; Usman, Mohammed Joda

    2017-01-01

    Cloud computing infrastructure is suitable for meeting computational needs of large task sizes. Optimal scheduling of tasks in cloud computing environment has been proved to be an NP-complete problem, hence the need for the application of heuristic methods. Several heuristic algorithms have been developed and used in addressing this problem, but choosing the appropriate algorithm for solving task assignment problem of a particular nature is difficult since the methods are developed under different assumptions. Therefore, six rule based heuristic algorithms are implemented and used to schedule autonomous tasks in homogeneous and heterogeneous environments with the aim of comparing their performance in terms of cost, degree of imbalance, makespan and throughput. First Come First Serve (FCFS), Minimum Completion Time (MCT), Minimum Execution Time (MET), Max-min, Min-min and Sufferage are the heuristic algorithms considered for the performance comparison and analysis of task scheduling in cloud computing.

  14. Effects of Dual-Task Management and Resistance Training on Gait Performance in Older Individuals: A Randomized Controlled Trial

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wollesen, Bettina; Mattes, Klaus; Schulz, Sören; Bischoff, Laura L.; Seydell, L.; Bell, Jeffrey W.; von Duvillard, Serge P.

    2017-01-01

    Background: Dual-task (DT) training is a well-accepted modality for fall prevention in older adults. DT training should include task-managing strategies such as task switching or task prioritization to improve gait performance under DT conditions. Methods: We conducted a randomized controlled trial to evaluate a balance and task managing training (BDT group) in gait performance compared to a single task (ST) strength and resistance training and a control group, which received no training. A total of 78 older individuals (72.0 ± 4.9 years) participated in this study. The DT group performed task managing training incorporating balance and coordination tasks while the ST group performed resistance training only. Training consisted of 12 weekly sessions, 60 min each, for 12 weeks. We assessed the effects of ST and BDT training on walking performance under ST and DT conditions in independent living elderly adults. ST and DT walking (visual verbal Stroop task) were measured utilizing a treadmill at self-selected walking speed (mean for all groups: 4.4 ± 1 km h-1). Specific gait variables, cognitive performance, and fear of falling were compared between all groups. >Results: Training improved gait performance for step length (p changes in cognitive performance. Both interventions reduced fear of falling (p management strategies into balance and strength training in our population revealed a promising modality to prevent falls in older individuals. Trial registration: German register of clinical trials DRKS00012382. PMID:29326581

  15. "Binary" and "non-binary" detection tasks: are current performance measures optimal?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gur, David; Rockette, Howard E; Bandos, Andriy I

    2007-07-01

    We have observed that a very large fraction of responses for several detection tasks during the performance of observer studies are in the extreme ranges of lower than 11% or higher than 89% regardless of the actual presence or absence of the abnormality in question or its subjectively rated "subtleness." This observation raises questions regarding the validity and appropriateness of using multicategory rating scales for such detection tasks. Monte Carlo simulation of binary and multicategory ratings for these tasks demonstrate that the use of the former (binary) often results in a less biased and more precise summary index and hence may lead to a higher statistical power for determining differences between modalities.

  16. Nogo receptor 1 limits tactile task performance independent of basal anatomical plasticity.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jennifer I Park

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

  17. Self-Reported Versus Performance-Based Assessments of a Simple Mobility Task Among Older Adults in the Emergency Department.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Roedersheimer, Kyle M; Pereira, Greg F; Jones, Christopher W; Braz, Valerie A; Mangipudi, Sowmya A; Platts-Mills, Timothy F

    2016-02-01

    Accurate information about the mobility of independently living older adults is essential in determining whether they may be safely discharged home from the emergency department (ED). We assess the accuracy of self-reported ability to complete a simple mobility task among older ED patients. This was a cross-sectional study of cognitively intact patients aged 65 years and older who were neither nursing home residents nor critically ill, conducted in 2 academic EDs. Consenting participants were asked whether they could get out of bed, walk 10 feet, turn around, and get back in bed without assistance, and if not, whether they could perform this task with a cane, walker, or assistance. Each participant was then asked to perform the task and was provided with a mobility device or assistance as needed. Of 272 patients who met eligibility criteria and answered the physical task question, 161 (59%) said they could do the task unassisted, 45 (17%) said they could do it with a cane or walker, 21 (8%) said they could do it with assistance, and 45 (17%) said they would be unable to do it even with assistance. Among those who said they could do the task either with or without assistance and who were subsequently willing to attempt the task (N=172), discrepancies between self-reported ability and actual performance were common. Of those who said they could perform the task without assistance, 12% required some assistance or were unable to complete the task. Of those who said they could perform the task with a cane or walker, 48% required either assistance or were unable to perform the task. Of those who said they could perform the task with assistance, 24% were unable to perform the task even with assistance. In this sample of older adults receiving care in the ED, the accuracy of their self-reported ability to perform a simple mobility task was poor, particularly for those who reported some need for assistance. For older adults being considered for discharge who report a need

  18. Insulin modulates hippocampally-mediated spatial working memory via glucose transporter-4.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pearson-Leary, J; Jahagirdar, V; Sage, J; McNay, E C

    2018-02-15

    The insulin-regulated glucose transporter, GluT4, is a key molecule in peripheral insulin signaling. Although GluT4 is abundantly expressed in neurons of specific brain regions such as the hippocampus, the functional role of neuronal GluT4 is unclear. Here, we used pharmacological inhibition of GluT4-mediated glucose uptake to determine whether GluT4 mediates insulin-mediated glucose uptake in the hippocampus. Consistent with previous reports, we found that glucose utilization increased in the dorsal hippocampus of male rats during spontaneous alternation (SA), a hippocampally-mediated spatial working memory task. We previously showed that insulin signaling within the hippocampus is required for processing this task, and that administration of exogenous insulin enhances performance. At baseline levels of hippocampal insulin, inhibition of GluT4-mediated glucose uptake did not affect SA performance. However, inhibition of an upstream regulator of GluT4, Akt, did impair SA performance. Conversely, when a memory-enhancing dose of insulin was delivered to the hippocampus prior to SA-testing, inhibition of GluT4-mediated glucose transport prevented cognitive enhancement. These data suggest that baseline hippocampal cognitive processing does not require functional hippocampal GluT4, but that cognitive enhancement by supra-baseline insulin does. Consistent with these findings, we found that in neuronal cell culture, insulin increases glucose utilization in a GluT4-dependent manner. Collectively, these data demonstrate a key role for GluT4 in transducing the procognitive effects of elevated hippocampal insulin. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  19. Effects on Task Performance and Psychophysiological Measures of Performance During Normobaric Hypoxia Exposure

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stephens, Chad; Kennedy, Kellie; Napoli, Nicholas; Demas, Matthew; Barnes, Laura; Crook, Brenda; Williams, Ralph; Last, Mary Carolyn; Schutte, Paul

    2017-01-01

    Human-autonomous systems have the potential to mitigate pilot cognitive impairment and improve aviation safety. A research team at NASA Langley conducted an experiment to study the impact of mild normobaric hypoxia induction on aircraft pilot performance and psychophysiological state. A within-subjects design involved non-hypoxic and hypoxic exposures while performing three 10-minute tasks. Results indicated the effect of 15,000 feet simulated altitude did not induce significant performance decrement but did produce increase in perceived workload. Analyses of psychophysiological responses evince the potential of biomarkers for hypoxia onset. This study represents on-going work at NASA intending to add to the current knowledge of psychophysiologically-based input to automation to increase aviation safety. Analyses involving coupling across physiological systems and wavelet transforms of cortical activity revealed patterns that can discern between the simulated altitude conditions. Specifically, multivariate entropy of ECG/Respiration components were found to be significant predictors (pTask performance was not appreciably impacted by the effect of 15,000 feet simulated altitude. Analyses of psychophysiological responses evince the potential of biomarkers for mild hypoxia onset.The potential for identifying shifts in underlying cortical and physiological systems could serve as a means to identify the onset of deteriorated cognitive state. Enabling such assessment in future flightdecks could permit increasingly autonomous systems-supported operations. Augmenting human operator through assessment of cognitive impairment has the potential to further improve operator performance and mitigate human error in safety critical contexts. This study represents ongoing work at NASA intending to add to the current knowledge of psychophysiologically-based input to automation to increase aviation safety.

  20. Current status of the tasks performed by the Nuclear Fuel Department for the CAREM project

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Kaufmann, Federico; Perez, Lidia E.; Perez, Aaldo; Marchi, Daniel E.

    2009-01-01

    CAREM Project required to the Nuclear Fuels Department to perform the necessary tasks to define the powder characteristics and natural UO 2 -Gd 2 O 3 , UO 2 -1.8 and 3.1 % enrichment fuel pellets manufacturing and control parameters. To start with these tasks it was necessary to hire and train staff, begin the licensing process of the facilities, update infrastructure works and equipment of existing facilities. A brief description of the tasks performed is shown. (author)

  1. Correlations between the simulated military tasks performance and physical fitness tests at high altitude

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Eduardo Borba Neves

    2017-11-01

    Full Text Available The aim of this study was to investigate the Correlations between the Simulated Military Tasks Performance and Physical Fitness Tests at high altitude. This research is part of a project to modernize the physical fitness test of the Colombian Army. Data collection was performed at the 13th Battalion of Instruction and Training, located 30km south of Bogota D.C., with a temperature range from 1ºC to 23ºC during the study period, and at 3100m above sea level. The sample was composed by 60 volunteers from three different platoons. The volunteers start the data collection protocol after 2 weeks of acclimation at this altitude. The main results were the identification of a high positive correlation between the 3 Assault wall in succession and the Simulated Military Tasks performance (r = 0.764, p<0.001, and a moderate negative correlation between pull-ups and the Simulated Military Tasks performance (r = -0.535, p<0.001. It can be recommended the use of the 20-consecutive overtaking of the 3 Assault wall in succession as a good way to estimate the performance in operational tasks which involve: assault walls, network of wires, military Climbing Nets, Tarzan jump among others, at high altitude.

  2. Does image quality matter? Impact of resolution and noise on mammographic task performance

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Saunders, Robert S. Jr.; Baker, Jay A.; Delong, David M.; Johnson, Jeff P.; Samei, Ehsan

    2007-01-01

    The purpose of this study was to examine the effects of different resolution and noise levels on task performance in digital mammography. This study created an image set with images at three different resolution levels, corresponding to three digital display devices, and three different noise levels, with noise magnitudes similar to full clinical dose, half clinical dose, and quarter clinical dose. The images were read by five experienced breast imaging radiologists. The data were then analyzed to compute two accuracy statistics (overall classification accuracy and lesion detection accuracy) and performance at four diagnostic tasks (detection of microcalcifications, benign masses, malignant masses, and discrimination of benign and malignant masses). Human observer results showed decreasing display resolution had little effect on overall classification accuracy and individual diagnostic task performance, but increasing noise caused overall classification accuracy to decrease by a statistically significant 21% as the breast dose went to one quarter of its normal clinical value. The noise effects were most prominent for the tasks of microcalcification detection and mass discrimination. When the noise changed from full clinical dose to quarter clinical dose, the microcalcification detection performance fell from 89% to 67% and the mass discrimination performance decreased from 93% to 79%, while malignant mass detection performance remained relatively constant with values of 88% and 84%, respectively. As a secondary aim, the image set was also analyzed by two observer models to examine whether their performance was similar to humans. Observer models differed from human observers and each other in their sensitivity to resolution degradation and noise. The primary conclusions of this study suggest that quantum noise appears to be the dominant image quality factor in digital mammography, affecting radiologist performance much more profoundly than display resolution

  3. A continuous time-resolved measure decoded from EEG oscillatory activity predicts working memory task performance

    Science.gov (United States)

    Astrand, Elaine

    2018-06-01

    Objective. Working memory (WM), crucial for successful behavioral performance in most of our everyday activities, holds a central role in goal-directed behavior. As task demands increase, inducing higher WM load, maintaining successful behavioral performance requires the brain to work at the higher end of its capacity. Because it is depending on both external and internal factors, individual WM load likely varies in a continuous fashion. The feasibility to extract such a continuous measure in time that correlates to behavioral performance during a working memory task remains unsolved. Approach. Multivariate pattern decoding was used to test whether a decoder constructed from two discrete levels of WM load can generalize to produce a continuous measure that predicts task performance. Specifically, a linear regression with L2-regularization was chosen with input features from EEG oscillatory activity recorded from healthy participants while performing the n-back task, n\\in [1,2] . Main results. The feasibility to extract a continuous time-resolved measure that correlates positively to trial-by-trial working memory task performance is demonstrated (r  =  0.47, p  <  0.05). It is furthermore shown that this measure allows to predict task performance before action (r  =  0.49, p  <  0.05). We show that the extracted continuous measure enables to study the temporal dynamics of the complex activation pattern of WM encoding during the n-back task. Specifically, temporally precise contributions of different spectral features are observed which extends previous findings of traditional univariate approaches. Significance. These results constitute an important contribution towards a wide range of applications in the field of cognitive brain–machine interfaces. Monitoring mental processes related to attention and WM load to reduce the risk of committing errors in high-risk environments could potentially prevent many devastating consequences or

  4. Mediator Effect of TPM between TQM and Business Performance in Malaysia Automotive Industry

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ahmad, M. F.; Zakuan, N.; Rasi, Raja Zuraidah R. M.; Hisyamudin, M. N. N.

    2015-05-01

    Total Quality Management (TQM) is vital management tool in ensuring a company can success in the continuously growing competition in the global market. In order to survive in the global market with intense competition amongst regions and enterprises, the adoption of tools and techniques are essential in improving business performance. However, only few previous studies have examined the mediators and moderators between TQM and business performance. This present research proposed a TQM performance model with mediator effect of TPM with structural equation modelling, which is a more comprehensive model for developing countries, specifically for Malaysia. A questionnaire was prepared and sent to 1500 companies from automotive industry and the related vendors in Malaysia, giving a 21.3 per cent rate. The result concludes that TPM is partial mediation between and TQM and Business Performance with indirect effect (IE) is 0.25 which can be categorised as high mediator effect.

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

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

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

    2013-01-01

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

  6. Transcranial direct current stimulation over multiple days enhances motor performance of a grip task.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fan, Julie; Voisin, Julien; Milot, Marie-Hélène; Higgins, Johanne; Boudrias, Marie-Hélène

    2017-09-01

    Recovery of handgrip is critical after stroke since it is positively related to upper limb function. To boost motor recovery, transcranial direct current stimulation (tDCS) is a promising, non-invasive brain stimulation technique for the rehabilitation of persons with stroke. When applied over the primary motor cortex (M1), tDCS has been shown to modulate neural processes involved in motor learning. However, no studies have looked at the impact of tDCS on the learning of a grip task in both stroke and healthy individuals. To assess the use of tDCS over multiple days to promote motor learning of a grip task using a learning paradigm involving a speed-accuracy tradeoff in healthy individuals. In a double-blinded experiment, 30 right-handed subjects (mean age: 22.1±3.3 years) participated in the study and were randomly assigned to an anodal (n=15) or sham (n=15) stimulation group. First, subjects performed the grip task with their dominant hand while following the pace of a metronome. Afterwards, subjects trained on the task, at their own pace, over 5 consecutive days while receiving sham or anodal tDCS over M1. After training, subjects performed de novo the metronome-assisted task. The change in performance between the pre and post metronome-assisted task was used to assess the impact of the grip task and tDCS on learning. Anodal tDCS over M1 had a significant effect on the speed-accuracy tradeoff function. The anodal tDCS group showed significantly greater improvement in performance (39.28±15.92%) than the sham tDCS group (24.06±16.35%) on the metronome-assisted task, t(28)=2.583, P=0.015 (effect size d=0.94). Anodal tDCS is effective in promoting grip motor learning in healthy individuals. Further studies are warranted to test its potential use for the rehabilitation of fine motor skills in stroke patients. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Masson SAS. All rights reserved.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhu, Xihe; Chen, Senlin

    2017-01-01

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

  8. Cerebral blood flow, fatigue, mental effort, and task performance in offices with two different pollution loads

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Nishihara, Naoe; Wargocki, Pawel; Tanabe, Shin-ichi

    2014-01-01

    The effects of indoor air quality on symptoms, perceptions, task performance, cerebral blood flow, fatigue, and mental effort of individuals working in an office were investigated. Twenty-four right-handed Danish female subjects in an office were exposed in groups of two at a time to two air...... pollution levels created by placing or removing a pollution source (i.e. a used carpet) behind a screen. During the exposure, the subjects performed four different office tasks presented on a computer monitor. The tasks were performed at two paces: normal and maximum. When the pollution source was present...... any effects caused by modifying pollution exposure, they were well correlated with increased mental effort when the tasks were performed at maximum pace and subjectively reported fatigue, which increased during the course of exposure, respectively....

  9. Attention and gaze shifting in dual-task and go/no-go performance with vocal responding

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Lamers, M.J.M.; Roelofs, A.P.A.

    2011-01-01

    Evidence from go/no-go performance on the Eriksen flanker task with manual responding suggests that individuals gaze at stimuli just as long as needed to identify them (e.g.. Sanders, 1998). In contrast, evidence from dual-task performance with vocal responding suggests that gaze shifts occur after

  10. A continuous time-resolved measure decoded from EEG oscillatory activity predicts working memory task performance.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Astrand, Elaine

    2018-06-01

    Working memory (WM), crucial for successful behavioral performance in most of our everyday activities, holds a central role in goal-directed behavior. As task demands increase, inducing higher WM load, maintaining successful behavioral performance requires the brain to work at the higher end of its capacity. Because it is depending on both external and internal factors, individual WM load likely varies in a continuous fashion. The feasibility to extract such a continuous measure in time that correlates to behavioral performance during a working memory task remains unsolved. Multivariate pattern decoding was used to test whether a decoder constructed from two discrete levels of WM load can generalize to produce a continuous measure that predicts task performance. Specifically, a linear regression with L2-regularization was chosen with input features from EEG oscillatory activity recorded from healthy participants while performing the n-back task, [Formula: see text]. The feasibility to extract a continuous time-resolved measure that correlates positively to trial-by-trial working memory task performance is demonstrated (r  =  0.47, p  performance before action (r  =  0.49, p  <  0.05). We show that the extracted continuous measure enables to study the temporal dynamics of the complex activation pattern of WM encoding during the n-back task. Specifically, temporally precise contributions of different spectral features are observed which extends previous findings of traditional univariate approaches. These results constitute an important contribution towards a wide range of applications in the field of cognitive brain-machine interfaces. Monitoring mental processes related to attention and WM load to reduce the risk of committing errors in high-risk environments could potentially prevent many devastating consequences or using the continuous measure as neurofeedback opens up new possibilities to develop novel rehabilitation techniques for

  11. Performance of children and adolescents with Asperger syndrome or high-functioning autism on advanced theory of mind tasks.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kaland, Nils; Callesen, Kirsten; Møller-Nielsen, Annette; Mortensen, Erik Lykke; Smith, Lars

    2008-07-01

    Although a number of advanced theory of mind tasks have been developed, there is a dearth of information on whether performances on different tasks are associated. The present study examined the performance of 21 children and adolescents with diagnoses of Asperger syndrome (AS) and 20 typically developing controls on three advanced theory of mind tasks: The Eyes Task, the Strange Stories, and the Stories from Everyday Life. The participants in the clinical group demonstrated lower performance than the controls on all the three tasks. The pattern of findings, however, indicates that these tasks may share different information-processing requirements in addition to tapping different mentalizing abilities.

  12. Effects of Social Incentives on Task Performance in the Elderly

    Science.gov (United States)

    Levendusky, Philip G.

    1978-01-01

    The performance of 60 elderly volunteers on two cancellation tasks was examined under one of three experimental conditions: social praise, social reproof, or no comment. The clear implications from these data are that social incentives may well facilitate behavioral change in the aged. (Author)

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jan Hundertmark

    2015-12-01

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

  14. Acquisition and production of skilled behavior in dynamic decision-making tasks

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kirlik, Alex

    1990-01-01

    Ongoing research investigating perceptual and contextual influences on skilled human performance in dynamic decision making environments is discussed. The research is motivated by two general classes of findings in recent decision making research. First, many studies suggest that the concrete context in which a task is presented has strong influences on the psychological processes used to perform the task and on subsequent performance. Second, studies of skilled behavior in a wide variety of task environments typically implicate the perceptual system as an important contributor to decision-making performance, either in its role as a mediator between the current decision context and stored knowledge, or as a mechanism capable of directly initiating activity through the development of a 'trained eye.' Both contextual and perceptual influences place limits on the ability of traditional utility-theoretic accounts of decision-making to guide display design, as variance in behavior due to contextual factors or the development of a perceptual skill is left unexplained. The author outlines a framework in which to view questions of perceptual and contextual influences on behavior and describe an experimental task and analysis technique which will be used to diagnose the possible role of perception in skilled decision making performance.

  15. Effects of task autonomy on performance: an extended model considering motivational, informational, and structural mechanisms.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Langfred, Claus W; Moye, Neta A

    2004-12-01

    A model explaining the relationship between task autonomy and performance is proposed that incorporates 3 different causal mechanisms. The performance benefits of task autonomy may be realized by increased motivation (motivational mechanisms), by capitalization of information asymmetries (informational mechanisms), or by better alignment with task and organizational structures (structural mechanisms). Further, it is proposed that these performance benefits are moderated by a variety of variables ranging from individual traits to organizational design. This model may provide a means for accounting for the sometimes inconsistent findings in the empirical literature exploring the relationship between autonomy and performance. The model also offers guidance in the search for additional boundary conditions as well as prescriptive guidelines for the allocation of autonomy in practice. 2004 APA, all rights reserved

  16. Introducing artificial depth cues to improve task performance in ITER maintenance actions

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Heemskerk, C.J.M.; Eendebak, P.T.; Schropp, G.Y.R.; Hermes, H.V.; Elzendoorn, B.S.Q.; Magielsen, A.J.

    2013-01-01

    Maintenance operations on ITER tokamak components will be largely performed by remote handling. In previous work it was shown that representative maintenance tasks could be performed significantly faster with direct visual feedback than with camera feedback. In post-test interviews, operators

  17. The performance of cleaner wrasse, Labroides dimidiatus, in a reversal learning task varies across experimental paradigms

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Simon Gingins

    2018-05-01

    Full Text Available Testing performance in controlled laboratory experiments is a powerful tool for understanding the extent and evolution of cognitive abilities in non-human animals. However, cognitive testing is prone to a number of potential biases, which, if unnoticed or unaccounted for, may affect the conclusions drawn. We examined whether slight modifications to the experimental procedure and apparatus used in a spatial task and reversal learning task affected performance outcomes in the bluestreak cleaner wrasse, Labroides dimidiatus (hereafter “cleaners”. Using two-alternative forced-choice tests, fish had to learn to associate a food reward with a side (left or right in their holding aquarium. Individuals were tested in one of four experimental treatments that differed slightly in procedure and/or physical set-up. Cleaners from all four treatment groups were equally able to solve the initial spatial task. However, groups differed in their ability to solve the reversal learning task: no individuals solved the reversal task when tested in small tanks with a transparent partition separating the two options, whereas over 50% of individuals solved the task when performed in a larger tank, or with an opaque partition. These results clearly show that seemingly insignificant details to the experimental set-up matter when testing performance in a spatial task and might significantly influence the outcome of experiments. These results echo previous calls for researchers to exercise caution when designing methodologies for cognition tasks to avoid misinterpretations.

  18. The performance of cleaner wrasse, Labroides dimidiatus, in a reversal learning task varies across experimental paradigms.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gingins, Simon; Marcadier, Fanny; Wismer, Sharon; Krattinger, Océane; Quattrini, Fausto; Bshary, Redouan; Binning, Sandra A

    2018-01-01

    Testing performance in controlled laboratory experiments is a powerful tool for understanding the extent and evolution of cognitive abilities in non-human animals. However, cognitive testing is prone to a number of potential biases, which, if unnoticed or unaccounted for, may affect the conclusions drawn. We examined whether slight modifications to the experimental procedure and apparatus used in a spatial task and reversal learning task affected performance outcomes in the bluestreak cleaner wrasse, Labroides dimidiatus (hereafter "cleaners"). Using two-alternative forced-choice tests, fish had to learn to associate a food reward with a side (left or right) in their holding aquarium. Individuals were tested in one of four experimental treatments that differed slightly in procedure and/or physical set-up. Cleaners from all four treatment groups were equally able to solve the initial spatial task. However, groups differed in their ability to solve the reversal learning task: no individuals solved the reversal task when tested in small tanks with a transparent partition separating the two options, whereas over 50% of individuals solved the task when performed in a larger tank, or with an opaque partition. These results clearly show that seemingly insignificant details to the experimental set-up matter when testing performance in a spatial task and might significantly influence the outcome of experiments. These results echo previous calls for researchers to exercise caution when designing methodologies for cognition tasks to avoid misinterpretations.

  19. Determination of validity and reliability of performance assessments tasks developed for selected topics in high school chemistry

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zichittella, Gail Eberhardt

    The primary purpose of this study was to validate performance assessments, which can be used as teaching and assessment instruments in high school science classrooms. This study evaluated the classroom usability of these performance instruments and establishes the interrater reliability of the scoring rubrics when used by classroom teachers. The assessment instruments were designed to represent two levels of scientific inquiry. The high level of inquiry tasks are relatively unstructured in terms of student directions; the low inquiry tasks provided more structure for the student. The tasks cover two content topics studied in chemistry (scientific observation and density). Students from a variety of Western New York school districts who were enrolled in chemistry classes and other science courses were involved in completion of the tasks at the two levels of inquiry. The chemistry students completed the NYS Regents Examination in Chemistry. Their classroom teachers were interviewed and completed a questionnaire to aid in the establishment their epistemological view on the inclusion of inquiry based learning in the science classroom. Data showed that the performance assessment tasks were reliable, valid and helpful for obtaining a more complete picture of the students' scientific understanding. The teacher participants reported no difficulty with the usability of the task in the high school chemistry setting. Collected data gave no evidence of gender bias with reference to the performance tasks or the NYS Regents Chemistry Examination. Additionally, it was shown that the instructors' classroom practices do have an effect upon the students' achievement on the performance tasks and the NYS Regents examination. Data also showed that achievement on the performance tasks was influenced by the number of years of science instruction students had received.

  20. Effects of Dual-Task Management and Resistance Training on Gait Performance in Older Individuals: A Randomized Controlled Trial

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Bettina Wollesen

    2017-12-01

    Full Text Available Background: Dual-task (DT training is a well-accepted modality for fall prevention in older adults. DT training should include task-managing strategies such as task switching or task prioritization to improve gait performance under DT conditions.Methods: We conducted a randomized controlled trial to evaluate a balance and task managing training (BDT group in gait performance compared to a single task (ST strength and resistance training and a control group, which received no training. A total of 78 older individuals (72.0 ± 4.9 years participated in this study. The DT group performed task managing training incorporating balance and coordination tasks while the ST group performed resistance training only. Training consisted of 12 weekly sessions, 60 min each, for 12 weeks. We assessed the effects of ST and BDT training on walking performance under ST and DT conditions in independent living elderly adults. ST and DT walking (visual verbal Stroop task were measured utilizing a treadmill at self-selected walking speed (mean for all groups: 4.4 ± 1 km h-1. Specific gait variables, cognitive performance, and fear of falling were compared between all groups.>Results: Training improved gait performance for step length (p < 0.001 and gait-line (ST: p < 0.01; DT p < 0.05 in both training groups. The BDT training group showed greater improvements in step length (p < 0.001 and gait-line (p < 0.01 during DT walking but did not have changes in cognitive performance. Both interventions reduced fear of falling (p < 0.05.Conclusion: Implementation of task management strategies into balance and strength training in our population revealed a promising modality to prevent falls in older individuals.Trial registration: German register of clinical trials DRKS00012382.

  1. Cancer and treatment effects on job task performance for gynecological cancer survivors.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nachreiner, Nancy M; Shanley, Ryan; Ghebre, Rahel G

    2013-01-01

    Over 91,000 new cases of gynecological cancers are expected to be diagnosed in 2013 in the US alone. As cancer detection technology and treatment options improve, the number of working-age cancer survivors continues to grow. To describe US gynecological cancer survivors' perceptions of the effects of cancer and treatment on their job tasks. 104 adult gynecological cancer survivors who were working at the time of their cancer diagnosis, treated at a University-based women's health clinic, diagnosed in the previous 24 months, and spoke English. Women completed written surveys to describe their work experiences following diagnosis. Clinical characteristics were obtained through medical record review. Descriptive statistics and cross tabulations were performed to describe characteristics and associations. Fifteen percent of women had chemotherapy and radiation treatment; 48% had only chemotherapy, 9% only radiation therapy, and 28% had neither. Survivors described the frequency of performing seven job tasks, such as 'intense concentration', 'analyzing data', and 'lifting heavy loads.' Women who had undergone radiation treatment were more likely to indicate limitations for physical tasks; women undergoing chemotherapy were more likely to report limitations in more analytic tasks. Only 29% of women noted an employer-based policy facilitated their return-to-work process. Cancer and treatment have important effects on job performance and may vary by type of treatment. Employer-based policies focusing on improved communication and work accommodations may improve the return to work process.

  2. Effect of alcohol and divided attention task on simulated driving performance of young drivers

    OpenAIRE

    FREYDIER , Chloé; BERTHELON , Catherine; Bastien-Toniazzo , Mireille; GINEYT , Guy

    2013-01-01

    The aim of this study is to evaluate driving impairment linked to divided attention task and alcohol and determinate if it is higher for novice drivers compared to more experienced drivers. Sixteen novice drivers and sixteen experienced drivers participated in three experimental sessions corresponding to blood alcohol concentration [BAC] of 0.0 g/L, 0.2 g/L and 0.5 g/L. They performed a divided attention task [car-following task combined with a number parity identification task], and their re...

  3. Improving balance, mobility, and dual-task performance in an adolescent with cerebral palsy: A case report.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fisher-Pipher, Sarah; Kenyon, Lisa K; Westman, Marci

    2017-07-01

    Improving functional mobility is often a desired outcome for adolescents with cerebral palsy (CP). Traditional neurorehabilitation approaches are frequently directed at impairments; however, improvements may not be carried over into functional mobility. The purpose of this case report was to describe the examination, intervention, and outcomes of a task-oriented physical therapy intervention program to improve dynamic balance, functional mobility, and dual-task performance in an adolescent with CP. The participant was a 15-year-old girl with spastic triplegic CP (Gross Motor Classification System Level II). Examination procedures included the Canadian Occupational Performance Measure, 6-minute walk test, Muscle Power Sprint Test, 10 x 5-meter sprint test, Timed Up and Down Stairs Test, Gross Motor Function Measure, Gillette Functional Assessment Questionnaire, and functional lower extremity strength tests. Intervention focused on task-oriented dynamic balance and mobility tasks that incorporated coordination and speed demands as well as task-specific lower extremity and trunk strengthening activities. Dual task demands were integrated into all intervention activities. Post-intervention testing revealed improvements in cardiovascular endurance, anaerobic power, agility, stair climbing, gross motor skills, and mobility. The participant appeared to benefit from a task-oriented program to improve dynamic balance, functional mobility, and dual-task performance.

  4. Neuronal activity in primate auditory cortex during the performance of audiovisual tasks.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brosch, Michael; Selezneva, Elena; Scheich, Henning

    2015-03-01

    This study aimed at a deeper understanding of which cognitive and motivational aspects of tasks affect auditory cortical activity. To this end we trained two macaque monkeys to perform two different tasks on the same audiovisual stimulus and to do this with two different sizes of water rewards. The monkeys had to touch a bar after a tone had been turned on together with an LED, and to hold the bar until either the tone (auditory task) or the LED (visual task) was turned off. In 399 multiunits recorded from core fields of auditory cortex we confirmed that during task engagement neurons responded to auditory and non-auditory stimuli that were task-relevant, such as light and water. We also confirmed that firing rates slowly increased or decreased for several seconds during various phases of the tasks. Responses to non-auditory stimuli and slow firing changes were observed during both the auditory and the visual task, with some differences between them. There was also a weak task-dependent modulation of the responses to auditory stimuli. In contrast to these cognitive aspects, motivational aspects of the tasks were not reflected in the firing, except during delivery of the water reward. In conclusion, the present study supports our previous proposal that there are two response types in the auditory cortex that represent the timing and the type of auditory and non-auditory elements of a auditory tasks as well the association between elements. © 2015 Federation of European Neuroscience Societies and John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  5. Measuring treatment effects on dual-task performance: a framework for research and clinical practice

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Prudence ePlummer

    2015-04-01

    Full Text Available The relevance of dual-task walking to everyday ambulation is widely acknowledged, and numerous studies have demonstrated that dual-task interference can significantly impact recovery of functional walking in people with neurological disorders. The magnitude and direction of dual-task interference is influenced by the interaction between the two tasks, including how individuals spontaneously prioritize their attention. Therefore, to accurately interpret and characterize dual-task interference and identify changes over time, it is imperative to evaluate single and dual-task performance in both tasks, as well as the tasks relative to each other. Yet, reciprocal dual-task effects are frequently ignored. The purpose of this perspective paper is to present a framework for measuring treatment effects on dual-task interference, specifically taking into account the interactions between the two tasks and how this can provide information on whether overall dual-task capacity has improved or a different attentional strategy has been adopted. In discussing the clinical implications of using this framework, we provide specific examples of using this method and provide some explicit recommendations for research and clinical practice.

  6. Basic considerations in predicting error probabilities in human task performance

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Fleishman, E.A.; Buffardi, L.C.; Allen, J.A.; Gaskins, R.C. III

    1990-04-01

    It is well established that human error plays a major role in the malfunctioning of complex systems. This report takes a broad look at the study of human error and addresses the conceptual, methodological, and measurement issues involved in defining and describing errors in complex systems. In addition, a review of existing sources of human reliability data and approaches to human performance data base development is presented. Alternative task taxonomies, which are promising for establishing the comparability on nuclear and non-nuclear tasks, are also identified. Based on such taxonomic schemes, various data base prototypes for generalizing human error rates across settings are proposed. 60 refs., 3 figs., 7 tabs

  7. LMS Use and Instructor Performance: The Role of Task-Technology Fit

    Science.gov (United States)

    McGill, Tanya; Klobas, Jane; Renzi, Stefano

    2011-01-01

    The introduction of learning management systems (LMS) has changed the way in which instructors work. This paper uses Goodhue and Thompson's (1995) technology-to-performance chain (TPC) to explore the roles of task-technology fit (TTF) and level of LMS use in the performance impacts of LMS for instructors. A mixed method approach was used: an…

  8. Influence of background noise on the performance in the odor sensitivity task: effects of noise type and extraversion.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Seo, Han-Seok; Hähner, Antje; Gudziol, Volker; Scheibe, Mandy; Hummel, Thomas

    2012-10-01

    Recent research demonstrated that background noise relative to silence impaired subjects' performance in a cognitively driven odor discrimination test. The current study aimed to investigate whether the background noise can also modulate performance in an odor sensitivity task that is less cognitively loaded. Previous studies have shown that the effect of background noise on task performance can be different in relation to degree of extraversion and/or type of noise. Accordingly, we wanted to examine whether the influence of background noise on the odor sensitivity task can be altered as a function of the type of background noise (i.e., nonverbal vs. verbal noise) and the degree of extraversion (i.e., introvert vs. extrovert group). Subjects were asked to conduct an odor sensitivity task in the presence of either nonverbal noise (e.g., party sound) or verbal noise (e.g., audio book), or silence. Overall, the subjects' mean performance in the odor sensitivity task was not significantly different across three auditory conditions. However, with regard to the odor sensitivity task, a significant interaction emerged between the type of background noise and the degree of extraversion. Specifically, verbal noise relative to silence significantly impaired or improved the performance of the odor sensitivity task in the introvert or extrovert group, respectively; the differential effect of introversion/extraversion was not observed in the nonverbal noise-induced task performance. In conclusion, our findings provide new empirical evidence that type of background noise and degree of extraversion play an important role in modulating the effect of background noise on subjects' performance in an odor sensitivity task.

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

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

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

    2016-01-01

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

  10. Identifying the neural substrates of intrinsic motivation during task performance.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lee, Woogul; Reeve, Johnmarshall

    2017-10-01

    Intrinsic motivation is the inherent tendency to seek out novelty and challenge, to explore and investigate, and to stretch and extend one's capacities. When people imagine performing intrinsically motivating tasks, they show heightened anterior insular cortex (AIC) activity. To fully explain the neural system of intrinsic motivation, however, requires assessing neural activity while people actually perform intrinsically motivating tasks (i.e., while answering curiosity-inducing questions or solving competence-enabling anagrams). Using event-related functional magnetic resonance imaging, we found that the neural system of intrinsic motivation involves not only AIC activity, but also striatum activity and, further, AIC-striatum functional interactions. These findings suggest that subjective feelings of intrinsic satisfaction (associated with AIC activations), reward processing (associated with striatum activations), and their interactions underlie the actual experience of intrinsic motivation. These neural findings are consistent with the conceptualization of intrinsic motivation as the pursuit and satisfaction of subjective feelings (interest and enjoyment) as intrinsic rewards.

  11. Walking while performing working memory tasks changes the prefrontal cortex hemodynamic activations and gait kinematics

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ming-I Brandon Lin

    2016-05-01

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

  12. Grip Strength and Its Relationship to Police Recruit Task Performance and Injury Risk: A Retrospective Cohort Study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Orr, Robin; Pope, Rodney; Stierli, Michael; Hinton, Benjamin

    2017-08-21

    Suitable grip strength is a police occupational requirement. The aim of this study was to investigate the association between grip strength, task performance and injury risk in a police population. Retrospective data of police recruits (n = 169) who had undergone basic recruit training were provided, including handgrip strength results, occupational task performance measures (consisting of police task simulations [SIM], tactical options [TACOPS] and marksmanship assessments) and injury records. Left hand grip strength (41.91 ± 8.29 kg) measures showed a stronger correlation than right hand grip strength (42.15 ± 8.53 kg) with all outcome measures. Recruits whose grip strength scores were lower were significantly more susceptible to failing the TACOPS occupational task assessment than those with greater grip strength scores, with significant ( p ≤ 0.003) weak to moderate, positive correlations found between grip strength and TACOPS performance. A significant ( p performance, with those performing better in marksmanship having higher grip strength. Left hand grip strength was significantly associated with injury risk ( r = -0.181, p = 0.018) but right hand grip strength was not. A positive association exists between handgrip strength and police recruit task performance (notably TACOPS and marksmanship) with recruits who scored poorly on grip strength being at greatest risk of occupational assessment task failure.

  13. Child abuse and performance task assessments of executive functions in boys.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mezzacappa, E; Kindlon, D; Earls, F

    2001-11-01

    We examined executive functions using performance tasks in 126 boys aged 6 to 16 years. who attended public schools and therapeutic schools for children with emotional and behavioral problems. Children were further grouped based on the presence or absence of substantiated abuse histories. Based on their abuse histories and schools of origin, children were classified as Therapeutic, Abused (TA, N = 25). Therapeutic, Nonabused (TN, N = 52), and Public School (PS, N = 48). Controlling IQ and medication status, we compared children in the three groups on teacher ratings of behavior, on experimenter observations of behavior during testing, and on performance tasks challenging the capacities to inhibit an act in progress, and to passively avoid responses associated with adverse consequences. We examined mean group differences in symptoms, behaviors, and task performance, as well as differential age-dependent changes in these dimensions. Independent of abuse history, therapeutic school children demonstrated comparable levels of internalizing and externalizing symptoms, and comparable levels of redirections to task during testing-sessions, that were significantly higher than those of the public school children. Both groups of therapeutic school children also showed comparable overall performance on the capacities to inhibit an act in progress, and to passively avoid responses associated with adverse consequences that were poorer than the performance of children from the public school. Children with histories of substantiated abuse showed diminished improvement with increasing age in the capacity to passively avoid responses associated with adverse consequences when compared not only to the public school children, but also to the children from the therapeutic schools without histories of abuse. Our findings complement reports of behavioral observations of abused children, and reports associating child abuse with altered cognitive development in other areas of competence

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    Clark, Ian; Dumas, Guillaume

    2016-01-01

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

  15. Effects of task complexity on rhythmic reproduction performance in adults.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Iannarilli, Flora; Vannozzi, Giuseppe; Iosa, Marco; Pesce, Caterina; Capranica, Laura

    2013-02-01

    The aim of the present study was to investigate the effect of task complexity on the capability to reproduce rhythmic patterns. Sedentary musically illiterate individuals (age: 34.8±4.2 yrs; M±SD) were administered a rhythmic test including three rhythmic patterns to be reproduced by means of finger-tapping, foot-tapping and walking. For the quantification of subjects' ability in the reproduction of rhythmic patterns, qualitative and quantitative parameters were submitted to analysis. A stereophotogrammetric system was used to reconstruct and evaluate individual performances. The findings indicated a good internal stability of the rhythmic reproduction, suggesting that the present experimental design is suitable to discriminate the participants' rhythmic ability. Qualitative aspects of rhythmic reproduction (i.e., speed of execution and temporal ratios between events) varied as a function of the perceptual-motor requirements of the rhythmic reproduction task, with larger reproduction deviations in the walking task. Copyright © 2013 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  16. The Role of Self-Regulated Learning Capacities in Iranian EFL Undergraduates’ Argumentative Writing Task Performance

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ali Akbar Khomeijani Farahani

    2017-09-01

    Full Text Available The current study was an attempt to explore the relationship between Iranian EFL learners’ self-regulatory capacities and their argumentative writing task performance in order to analyze measures of complexity, accuracy, and fluency (CAF. To this end, 44 Iranian EFL undergraduates majoring in English literature at the University of Tehran were recruited based on convenience sampling to participate in this study. Employing a correlational design, the participants were required to perform an argumentative writing task and complete the Motivated Strategies for Learning Questionnaire designed by Pintrich, Smith, Garcia, and McKeachie (1991. Pearson product moment correlation indicated a significant relationship between self-regulated learning and writing task performance in relation to CAF measures. In addition, the results of multiple regression showed that resource management strategies and value component predicted 56.9% of grammatical accuracy of writing task. It was also shown that resource management strategies, value, and expectancy components predicted 56.5% of lexical complexity of writing task. Lastly, cognitive and metacognitive strategies, expectancy, and value components predicted 55.2% of the fluency of writing task. The findings of this study informs EFL writing pedagogy and English language teachers and syllabus designers  with regard to the benefits of applying self-regulatory strategies in teaching and assessing writing.

  17. Cognitive function predicts listening effort performance during complex tasks in normally aging adults

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jennine Harvey

    2017-01-01

    Full Text Available Purpose: This study examines whether cognitive function, as measured by the subtests of the Woodcock–Johnson III (WCJ-III assessment, predicts listening-effort performance during dual tasks across the adults of varying ages. Materials and Methods: Participants were divided into two groups. Group 1 consisted of 14 listeners (number of females = 11 who were 41–61 years old [mean = 53.18; standard deviation (SD = 5.97]. Group 2 consisted of 15 listeners (number of females = 9 who were 63–81 years old (mean = 72.07; SD = 5.11. Participants were administered the WCJ-III Memory for Words, Auditory Working Memory, Visual Matching, and Decision Speed subtests. All participants were tested in each of the following three dual-task experimental conditions, which were varying in complexity: (1 auditory word recognition + visual processing, (2 auditory working memory (word + visual processing, and (3 auditory working memory (sentence + visual processing in noise. Results: A repeated measures analysis of variance revealed that task complexity significantly affected the performance measures of auditory accuracy, visual accuracy, and processing speed. Linear regression revealed that the cognitive subtests of the WCJ-III test significantly predicted performance across dependent variable measures. Conclusion: Listening effort is significantly affected by task complexity, regardless of age. Performance on the WCJ-III test may predict listening effort in adults and may assist speech-language pathologist (SLPs to understand challenges faced by participants when subjected to noise.

  18. Investigation of crew performance in a multi-vehicle supervisory control task

    Science.gov (United States)

    Miller, R. A.; Plamondon, B. D.; Jagacinski, R. J.; Kirlik, A. C.

    1986-01-01

    Crew information processing and decision making in a supervisory control task which is loosely based on the mission of future generation helicopters is measured and represented. Subjects control the motion and activities of their own vehicle and direct the activities of four additional craft. The task involves searching an uncertain environment for cargo and enemies, returning cargo to home base and destroying enemies while attempting to avoid destruction of the scout and the supervised vehicles. A series of experiments with two-person crews and one-person crews were performed. Resulting crew performance was modeled with the objective of describing and understanding the information processing strategies utilized. Of particular interest are problem simplification strategies under time stress and high work load, simplification and compensation in the one-person cases, crew coordination in the two-person cases, and the relationship between strategy and errors in all cases. The results should provide some insight into the effective use of aids, particularly aids based on artificial intelligence, for similar tasks. The simulation is described which is used for the study and some preliminary results from the first two-person crew study are discussed.

  19. The effect of visual-motion time delays on pilot performance in a pursuit tracking task

    Science.gov (United States)

    Miller, G. K., Jr.; Riley, D. R.

    1976-01-01

    A study has been made to determine the effect of visual-motion time delays on pilot performance of a simulated pursuit tracking task. Three interrelated major effects have been identified: task difficulty, motion cues, and time delays. As task difficulty, as determined by airplane handling qualities or target frequency, increases, the amount of acceptable time delay decreases. However, when relatively complete motion cues are included in the simulation, the pilot can maintain his performance for considerably longer time delays. In addition, the number of degrees of freedom of motion employed is a significant factor.

  20. Deep ART Neural Model for Biologically Inspired Episodic Memory and Its Application to Task Performance of Robots.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Park, Gyeong-Moon; Yoo, Yong-Ho; Kim, Deok-Hwa; Kim, Jong-Hwan

    2017-06-26

    Robots are expected to perform smart services and to undertake various troublesome or difficult tasks in the place of humans. Since these human-scale tasks consist of a temporal sequence of events, robots need episodic memory to store and retrieve the sequences to perform the tasks autonomously in similar situations. As episodic memory, in this paper we propose a novel Deep adaptive resonance theory (ART) neural model and apply it to the task performance of the humanoid robot, Mybot, developed in the Robot Intelligence Technology Laboratory at KAIST. Deep ART has a deep structure to learn events, episodes, and even more like daily episodes. Moreover, it can retrieve the correct episode from partial input cues robustly. To demonstrate the effectiveness and applicability of the proposed Deep ART, experiments are conducted with the humanoid robot, Mybot, for performing the three tasks of arranging toys, making cereal, and disposing of garbage.

  1. The Neural Mechanisms Underlying Internally and Externally Guided Task Selection

    Science.gov (United States)

    Orr, Joseph M.; Banich, Marie T.

    2013-01-01

    While some prior work suggests that medial prefrontal cortex (MFC) regions mediate freely chosen actions, other work suggests that the lateral frontal pole (LFP) is responsible for control of abstract, internal goals. The present study uses fMRI to determine whether the voluntary selection of a task in pursuit of an overall goal relies on MFC regions or the LFP. To do so, we used a modified voluntary task switching (VTS) paradigm, in which participants choose an individual task to perform on each trial (i.e., a subgoal), under instructions to perform the tasks equally often and in a random order (i.e. the overall goal). In conjunction, we examined patterns of activation in the face of irrelevant, but task-related external stimuli that might nonetheless influence task selection. While there was some evidence that the MFC was involved in voluntary task selection, we found that the LFP and anterior insula (AI) were crucial to task selection in the pursuit of an overall goal. In addition, activation of the LFP and AI increased in the face of environmental stimuli that might serve as an interfering or conflicting external bias on voluntary task choice. These findings suggest that the LFP supports task selection according to abstract, internal goals, and leaves open the possibility that MFC may guide action selection in situations lacking in such top-down biases. As such, the current study represents a critical step towards understanding the neural underpinnings of how tasks are selected voluntarily to enable an overarching goal. PMID:23994316

  2. Involvement of Spearman's g in conceptualisation versus execution of complex tasks.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Carroll, Ellen L; Bright, Peter

    2016-10-01

    Strong correlations between measures of fluid intelligence (or Spearman's g) and working memory are widely reported in the literature, but there is considerable controversy concerning the nature of underlying mechanisms driving this relationship. In the four experiments presented here we consider the role of response conflict and task complexity in the context of real-time task execution demands (Experiments 1-3) and also address recent evidence that g confers an advantage at the level of task conceptualisation rather than (or in addition to) task execution (Experiment 4). We observed increased sensitivity of measured fluid intelligence to task performance in the presence (vs. the absence) of response conflict, and this relationship remained when task complexity was reduced. Performance-g correlations were also observed in the absence of response conflict, but only in the context of high task complexity. Further, we present evidence that differences in conceptualisation or 'modelling' of task instructions prior to execution had an important mediating effect on observed correlations, but only when the task encompassed a strong element of response inhibition. Our results suggest that individual differences in ability reflect, in large part, variability in the efficiency with which the relational complexity of task constraints are held in mind. It follows that fluid intelligence may support successful task execution through the construction of effective action plans via optimal allocation of limited resources. Copyright © 2016 The Authors. Published by Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  3. Influence of stereoscopic vision on task performance with an operating microscope

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Nibourg, Lisanne M.; Wanders, Wouter; C