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Sample records for perform simple tasks

  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. 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

  3. How checking breeds doubt: reduced performance in a simple working memory task.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Harkin, Ben; Kessler, Klaus

    2009-06-01

    A paradox of memory research is that repeated checking results in a decrease in memory certainty, memory vividness and confidence [van den Hout, M. A., & Kindt, M. (2003a). Phenomenological validity of an OCD-memory model and the remember/know distinction. Behaviour Research and Therapy, 41, 369-378; van den Hout, M. A., & Kindt, M. (2003b). Repeated checking causes memory distrust. Behaviour Research and Therapy, 41, 301-316]. Although these findings have been mainly attributed to changes in episodic long-term memory, it has been suggested [Shimamura, A. P. (2000). Toward a cognitive neuroscience of metacognition. Consciousness and Cognition, 9, 313-323] that representations in working memory could already suffer from detrimental checking. In two experiments we set out to test this hypothesis by employing a delayed-match-to-sample working memory task. Letters had to be remembered in their correct locations, a task that was designed to engage the episodic short-term buffer of working memory [Baddeley, A. D. (2000). The episodic buffer: a new component in working memory? Trends in Cognitive Sciences, 4, 417-423]. Of most importance, we introduced an intermediate distractor question that was prone to induce frustrating and unnecessary checking on trials where no correct answer was possible. Reaction times and confidence ratings on the actual memory test of these trials confirmed the success of this manipulation. Most importantly, high checkers [cf. VOCI; Thordarson, D. S., Radomsky, A. S., Rachman, S., Shafran, R, Sawchuk, C. N., & Hakstian, A. R. (2004). The Vancouver obsessional compulsive inventory (VOCI). Behaviour Research and Therapy, 42(11), 1289-1314] were less accurate than low checkers when frustrating checking was induced, especially if the experimental context actually emphasized the irrelevance of the misleading question. The clinical relevance of this result was substantiated by means of an extreme groups comparison across the two studies. The findings

  4. Performance on a simple response time task: Is sleep or work more important for miners?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ferguson, Sally A; Paech, Gemma M; Dorrian, Jillian; Roach, Gregory D; Jay, Sarah M

    2011-01-01

    The purpose of the current study was to investigate the impact of work- and sleep-related factors on an objective measure of response time in a field setting. Thirty-five mining operators working 12-h shift patterns completed daily sleep and work diaries, wore activity monitors continuously and completed palm-based psychomotor vigilance tests (palmPVT) at the start and end of each shift. Linear mixed models were used to test the main effects on response time of roster, timing of test, sleep history and prior wake. The time at which the test occurred was a significant predictor of response time (F₃(,)₄₀₃(.)₄ = 6.72, p times than the start of night shifts, and the start or end of day shifts. Further, the amount of sleep obtained in the 24h prior to the test was also a significant predictor of response time (F₃(,)₄₀₇(.)₀ = 3.05, p time indicative of performance impairments. Of more interest however is that immediate sleep history was also predictive of changes in response time with lower amounts of prior sleep related to slower response times. The current data provides further evidence that sleep is a primary mediator of performance, independent of roster pattern. Copyright © 2010 Elsevier Ltd and The Ergonomics Society. All rights reserved.

  5. Post-error expression of speed and force while performing a simple, monotonous task with a haptic pen

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Bruns, M.; Keyson, D.V.; Jabon, M.E.; Hummels, C.C.M.; Hekkert, P.P.M.; Bailenson, J.N.

    2013-01-01

    Control errors often occur in repetitive and monotonous tasks, such as manual assembly tasks. Much research has been done in the area of human error identification; however, most existing systems focus solely on the prediction of errors, not on increasing worker accuracy. The current study examines

  6. 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....

  7. Associations between Tactile Sensory Threshold and Postural Performance and Effects of Healthy Aging and Subthreshold Vibrotactile Stimulation on Postural Outcomes in a Simple Dual Task.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dettmer, Marius; Pourmoghaddam, Amir; Lee, Beom-Chan; Layne, Charles S

    2016-01-01

    Specific activities that require concurrent processing of postural and cognitive tasks may increase the risk for falls in older adults. We investigated whether peripheral receptor sensitivity was associated with postural performance in a dual-task and whether an intervention in form of subthreshold vibration could affect performance. Ten younger (age: 20-35 years) and ten older adults (70-85 years) performed repeated auditory-verbal 1-back tasks while standing quietly on a force platform. Foot sole vibration was randomly added during several trials. Several postural control and performance measures were assessed and statistically analyzed (significance set to α-levels of .05). There were moderate correlations between peripheral sensitivity and several postural performance and control measures (r = .45 to .59). Several postural performance measures differed significantly between older and younger adults (p stimulation should focus on older adults whose balance is significantly affected.

  8. Associations between Tactile Sensory Threshold and Postural Performance and Effects of Healthy Aging and Subthreshold Vibrotactile Stimulation on Postural Outcomes in a Simple Dual Task

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dettmer, Marius; Pourmoghaddam, Amir; Lee, Beom-Chan; Layne, Charles S.

    2016-01-01

    Specific activities that require concurrent processing of postural and cognitive tasks may increase the risk for falls in older adults. We investigated whether peripheral receptor sensitivity was associated with postural performance in a dual-task and whether an intervention in form of subthreshold vibration could affect performance. Ten younger (age: 20–35 years) and ten older adults (70–85 years) performed repeated auditory-verbal 1-back tasks while standing quietly on a force platform. Foot sole vibration was randomly added during several trials. Several postural control and performance measures were assessed and statistically analyzed (significance set to α-levels of .05). There were moderate correlations between peripheral sensitivity and several postural performance and control measures (r = .45 to .59). Several postural performance measures differed significantly between older and younger adults (p older adults' performance in dual-tasks, and peripheral sensitivity may be a contributor to the observed differences. A vibration intervention may only be useful when there are more severe impairments of the sensorimotor system. Hence, future research regarding the efficacy of sensorimotor interventions in the form of vibrotactile stimulation should focus on older adults whose balance is significantly affected. PMID:27143967

  9. Associations between Tactile Sensory Threshold and Postural Performance and Effects of Healthy Aging and Subthreshold Vibrotactile Stimulation on Postural Outcomes in a Simple Dual Task

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Marius Dettmer

    2016-01-01

    Full Text Available Specific activities that require concurrent processing of postural and cognitive tasks may increase the risk for falls in older adults. We investigated whether peripheral receptor sensitivity was associated with postural performance in a dual-task and whether an intervention in form of subthreshold vibration could affect performance. Ten younger (age: 20–35 years and ten older adults (70–85 years performed repeated auditory-verbal 1-back tasks while standing quietly on a force platform. Foot sole vibration was randomly added during several trials. Several postural control and performance measures were assessed and statistically analyzed (significance set to α-levels of .05. There were moderate correlations between peripheral sensitivity and several postural performance and control measures (r=.45 to .59. Several postural performance measures differed significantly between older and younger adults (p<0.05; addition of vibration did not affect outcome measures. Aging affects healthy older adults’ performance in dual-tasks, and peripheral sensitivity may be a contributor to the observed differences. A vibration intervention may only be useful when there are more severe impairments of the sensorimotor system. Hence, future research regarding the efficacy of sensorimotor interventions in the form of vibrotactile stimulation should focus on older adults whose balance is significantly affected.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    Michel, Marije C.

    2013-01-01

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

  11. 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....

  12. Stimulating Mathematical Reasoning with Simple Open-Ended Tasks

    Science.gov (United States)

    West, John

    2018-01-01

    The importance of mathematical reasoning is unquestioned and providing opportunities for students to become involved in mathematical reasoning is paramount. The open-ended tasks presented incorporate mathematical content explored through the contexts of problem solving and reasoning. This article presents a number of simple tasks that may be…

  13. 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

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Riccardo Muradore

    2015-04-01

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

  15. Influence of time pressure in a simple response task, a choice-by-location task, and the Simon task

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    van der Lubbe, Robert Henricus Johannes; Jaśkowski, Piotr; Wauschkuhn, Bernd; Verleger, Rolf

    2001-01-01

    Examined the influence of strategy for a simple response task, a choice-by-location task, and the Simon task by varying time pressure in 11 Ss (mean age 28 yrs). Besides reaction time (RT) and accuracy, we measured response force and derived two measures from the event-related EEG potential to form

  16. 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.

  17. 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....

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    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.

  19. 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...

  20. 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.

  1. Modeling Simple Driving Tasks with a One-Boundary Diffusion Model

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ratcliff, Roger; Strayer, David

    2014-01-01

    A one-boundary diffusion model was applied to the data from two experiments in which subjects were performing a simple simulated driving task. In the first experiment, the same subjects were tested on two driving tasks using a PC-based driving simulator and the psychomotor vigilance test (PVT). The diffusion model fit the response time (RT) distributions for each task and individual subject well. Model parameters were found to correlate across tasks which suggests common component processes were being tapped in the three tasks. The model was also fit to a distracted driving experiment of Cooper and Strayer (2008). Results showed that distraction altered performance by affecting the rate of evidence accumulation (drift rate) and/or increasing the boundary settings. This provides an interpretation of cognitive distraction whereby conversing on a cell phone diverts attention from the normal accumulation of information in the driving environment. PMID:24297620

  2. 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.

  3. 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.

  4. Measuring listening effort: driving simulator versus simple dual-task paradigm.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wu, Yu-Hsiang; Aksan, Nazan; Rizzo, Matthew; Stangl, Elizabeth; Zhang, Xuyang; Bentler, Ruth

    2014-01-01

    The dual-task paradigm has been widely used to measure listening effort. The primary objectives of the study were to (1) investigate the effect of hearing aid amplification and a hearing aid directional technology on listening effort measured by a complicated, more real world dual-task paradigm and (2) compare the results obtained with this paradigm to a simpler laboratory-style dual-task paradigm. The listening effort of adults with hearing impairment was measured using two dual-task paradigms, wherein participants performed a speech recognition task simultaneously with either a driving task in a simulator or a visual reaction-time task in a sound-treated booth. The speech materials and road noises for the speech recognition task were recorded in a van traveling on the highway in three hearing aid conditions: unaided, aided with omnidirectional processing (OMNI), and aided with directional processing (DIR). The change in the driving task or the visual reaction-time task performance across the conditions quantified the change in listening effort. Compared to the driving-only condition, driving performance declined significantly with the addition of the speech recognition task. Although the speech recognition score was higher in the OMNI and DIR conditions than in the unaided condition, driving performance was similar across these three conditions, suggesting that listening effort was not affected by amplification and directional processing. Results from the simple dual-task paradigm showed a similar trend: hearing aid technologies improved speech recognition performance, but did not affect performance in the visual reaction-time task (i.e., reduce listening effort). The correlation between listening effort measured using the driving paradigm and the visual reaction-time task paradigm was significant. The finding showing that our older (56 to 85 years old) participants' better speech recognition performance did not result in reduced listening effort was not

  5. Brain activity during auditory and visual phonological, spatial and simple discrimination tasks.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Salo, Emma; Rinne, Teemu; Salonen, Oili; Alho, Kimmo

    2013-02-16

    We used functional magnetic resonance imaging to measure human brain activity during tasks demanding selective attention to auditory or visual stimuli delivered in concurrent streams. Auditory stimuli were syllables spoken by different voices and occurring in central or peripheral space. Visual stimuli were centrally or more peripherally presented letters in darker or lighter fonts. The participants performed a phonological, spatial or "simple" (speaker-gender or font-shade) discrimination task in either modality. Within each modality, we expected a clear distinction between brain activations related to nonspatial and spatial processing, as reported in previous studies. However, within each modality, different tasks activated largely overlapping areas in modality-specific (auditory and visual) cortices, as well as in the parietal and frontal brain regions. These overlaps may be due to effects of attention common for all three tasks within each modality or interaction of processing task-relevant features and varying task-irrelevant features in the attended-modality stimuli. Nevertheless, brain activations caused by auditory and visual phonological tasks overlapped in the left mid-lateral prefrontal cortex, while those caused by the auditory and visual spatial tasks overlapped in the inferior parietal cortex. These overlapping activations reveal areas of multimodal phonological and spatial processing. There was also some evidence for intermodal attention-related interaction. Most importantly, activity in the superior temporal sulcus elicited by unattended speech sounds was attenuated during the visual phonological task in comparison with the other visual tasks. This effect might be related to suppression of processing irrelevant speech presumably distracting the phonological task involving the letters. Copyright © 2012 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  6. Simple real-time computerized tasks for detection of malingering among murderers with schizophrenia.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kertzman, Semion; Grinspan, Haim; Birger, Moshe; Shliapnikov, Nina; Alish, Yakov; Ben Nahum, Zeev; Mester, Roberto; Kotler, Moshe

    2006-01-01

    It is our contention that computer-based two-alternative forced choice techniques can be useful tools for the detection of patients with schizophrenia who feign acute psychotic symptoms and cognitive impairment as opposed to patients with schizophrenia with a true active psychosis. In our experiment, Visual Simple and Choice Reaction Time tasks were used. Reaction time in milliseconds was recorded and accuracy rate was obtained for all subjects' responses. Both types of task were administered to 27 patients with schizophrenia suspected of having committed murder. Patients with schizophrenia who were clinically assessed as malingerers achieved significantly fewer correct results, were significantly slower and less consistent in their reaction time. Congruence of performance between the Simple and Choice tasks was an additional parameter for the accurate diagnosis of malingering. The four parameters of both tests (accuracy of response, reaction time, standard deviation of reaction time and task congruency) are simple and constitute a user-friendly means for the detection of malingering in forensic practice. Another advantage of this procedure is that the software automatically measures and evaluates all the parameters.

  7. 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.

  8. Timing of electromyographic activity and ranges of motion during simple motor tasks of upper extremities

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Syczewska Małgorzata

    2017-10-01

    Full Text Available Study aim: Improvement of the upper extremities’ performance is one of the key aims in the rehabilitation process. In order to achieve high effectiveness of this process the amount of functional improvement achieved by a patient during the therapy needs to be assessed. The aim of this study was to obtain electromyographic (EMG activity profiles of the upper extremity muscles during execution of simple tasks in healthy subjects. Additionally the ranges of wrist, elbow and shoulder joints were measured and reported during performed trials. The second aim was to determine whether the movement execution and ranges of move­ments and muscular activity depend on age. Material and methods: Twenty-eight healthy adults, age range 21 to 65 years old, participated in the study. Surface electrodes were placed bilaterally on 7 upper extremity muscles. To obtain information about the beginning and end of the movement task and ranges of upper extremity joints, 13 markers were placed on the elbows and wrists of both upper extremities. The move­ments of the segments were calculated (distal vs proximal in five simple functional tasks (each task involved only one joint, performed while sitting. Kinematic data were collected by the VICON 460 system, and electromyographic data with the Mo­tion Lab EMG system. Results: Charts of timing of EMG activity of the upper extremity muscles together with ranges of upper extremity joint motion were obtained. Conclusion: The results show that the number of muscles activated and the time (or percentage of the task during which they are active depend on the type of the task and age. These data can be used as a reference in evaluation of functional deficits of patients.

  9. Pleasantness of Creative Tasks and Creative Performance

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    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.…

  10. 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...

  11. 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.

  12. 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

  13. Trait Mindfulness and Cognitive Task Performance

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Emalee J. W. Quickel

    2014-11-01

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

  14. Action video games do not improve the speed of information processing in simple perceptual tasks.

    Science.gov (United States)

    van Ravenzwaaij, Don; Boekel, Wouter; Forstmann, Birte U; Ratcliff, Roger; Wagenmakers, Eric-Jan

    2014-10-01

    Previous research suggests that playing action video games improves performance on sensory, perceptual, and attentional tasks. For instance, Green, Pouget, and Bavelier (2010) used the diffusion model to decompose data from a motion detection task and estimate the contribution of several underlying psychological processes. Their analysis indicated that playing action video games leads to faster information processing, reduced response caution, and no difference in motor responding. Because perceptual learning is generally thought to be highly context-specific, this transfer from gaming is surprising and warrants corroborative evidence from a large-scale training study. We conducted 2 experiments in which participants practiced either an action video game or a cognitive game in 5 separate, supervised sessions. Prior to each session and following the last session, participants performed a perceptual discrimination task. In the second experiment, we included a third condition in which no video games were played at all. Behavioral data and diffusion model parameters showed similar practice effects for the action gamers, the cognitive gamers, and the nongamers and suggest that, in contrast to earlier reports, playing action video games does not improve the speed of information processing in simple perceptual tasks.

  15. 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.

  16. 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

  17. Responses to a simple barter task in chimpanzees, Pan troglodytes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Brosnan, Sarah F; de Waal, Frans B M

    2005-07-01

    Chimpanzees (Pan troglodytes) frequently participate in social exchange involving multiple goods and services of variable value, yet they have not been tested in a formalized situation to see whether they can barter using multiple tokens and rewards. We set up a simple barter economy with two tokens and two associated rewards and tested chimpanzees on their ability to obtain rewards by returning the matching token in situations in which their access to tokens was unlimited or limited. Chimpanzees easily learned to associate value with the tokens, as expected, and did barter, but followed a simple strategy of favoring the higher-value token, regardless of the reward proffered, instead of a more complex but more effective strategy of returning the token that matched the reward. This response is similar to that shown by capuchin monkeys in our previous study. We speculate that this response, while not ideal, may be sufficient to allow for stability of the social exchange system in these primates, and that the importance of social barter to both species may have led to this convergence of strategies.

  18. Mechanisms of Practice-Related Reductions of Dual-Task Interference with Simple Tasks: Data and Theory

    Science.gov (United States)

    Strobach, Tilo; Torsten, Schubert

    2017-01-01

    In dual-task situations, interference between two simultaneous tasks impairs performance. With practice, however, this impairment can be reduced. To identify mechanisms leading to a practice-related improvement in sensorimotor dual tasks, the present review applied the following general hypothesis: Sources that impair dual-task performance at the beginning of practice are associated with mechanisms for the reduction of dual-task impairment at the end of practice. The following types of processes provide sources for the occurrence of this impairment: (a) capacity-limited processes within the component tasks, such as response-selection or motor response stages, and (b) cognitive control processes independent of these tasks and thus operating outside of component-task performance. Dual-task practice studies show that, under very specific conditions, capacity-limited processes within the component tasks are automatized with practice, reducing the interference between two simultaneous tasks. Further, there is evidence that response-selection stages are shortened with practice. Thus, capacity limitations at these stages are sources for dual-task costs at the beginning of practice and are overcome with practice. However, there is no evidence demonstrating the existence of practice-related mechanisms associated with capacity-limited motor-response stages. Further, during practice, there is an acquisition of executive control skills for an improved allocation of limited attention resources to two tasks as well as some evidence supporting the assumption of improved task coordination. These latter mechanisms are associated with sources of dual-task interference operating outside of component task performance at the beginning of practice and also contribute to the reduction of dual-task interference at its end. PMID:28439319

  19. Medical Data Analytics Is Not a Simple Task.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Babič, František; Vadovský, Michal; Paralič, Ján

    2018-01-01

    Data analytics represents a new chance for medical diagnosis and treatment to make it more effective and successful. This expectation is not so easy to achieve as it may look like at a first glance. The medical experts, doctors or general practitioners have their own vocabulary, they use specific terms and type of speaking. On the other side, data analysts have to understand the task and to select the right algorithms. The applicability of the results depends on the effectiveness of the interactions between those two worlds. This paper presents our experiences with various medical data samples in form of SWOT analysis. We identified the most important input attributes for the target diagnosis or extracted decision rules and analysed their interestingness with cooperating doctors, for most promising new cut-off values or an investigation of possible important relations hidden in data sample. In general, this type of knowledge can be used for clinical decision support, but it has to be evaluated on different samples, conditions and ideally in long-term studies. Sometimes, the interaction needed much more time than we expected at the beginning but our experiences are mostly positive.

  20. 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

  1. 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.

  2. 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.

  3. 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…

  4. 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.

  5. 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.

  6. Grotoco@SLAM: Second Language Acquisition Modeling with Simple Features, Learners and Task-wise Models

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Klerke, Sigrid; Martínez Alonso, Héctor; Plank, Barbara

    2018-01-01

    We present our submission to the 2018 Duolingo Shared Task on Second Language Acquisition Modeling (SLAM). We focus on evaluating a range of features for the task, including user-derived measures, while examining how far we can get with a simple linear classifier. Our analysis reveals that errors...

  7. 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.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gaoua, Nadia; Herrera, Christopher P; Périard, Julien D; El Massioui, Farid; Racinais, Sebastien

    2017-01-01

    The aim of this study was to verify the hypothesis that hyperthermia represents a cognitive load limiting available resources for executing concurrent cognitive tasks. Electroencephalographic activity (EEG: alpha and theta power) was obtained in 10 hyperthermic participants in HOT (50°C, 50% RH) conditions and in a normothermic state in CON (25°C, 50% RH) conditions in counterbalanced order. In each trial, EEG was measured over the frontal lobe prior to task engagement (PRE) in each condition and during simple (One Touch Stockings of Cambridge, OTS-4) and complex (OTS-6) cognitive tasks. Core (39.5 ± 0.5 vs. 36.9 ± 0.2°C) and mean skin (39.06 ± 0.3 vs. 31.6 ± 0.6°C) temperatures were significantly higher in HOT than CON ( p cognitive load. However, this load disappeared during OTS-6 together with an impaired performance, suggesting a potential saturation of the available resources.

  9. 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

  10. Frontal subregions mediating Elevator Counting task performance.

    Science.gov (United States)

    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.

  11. 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.

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Nadia Gaoua

    2018-01-01

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

  13. 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.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    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.

  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. 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…

  17. 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.

  18. Frontal lobe functioning during a simple response conflict task in first-episode psychosis and its relationship to treatment response.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shafritz, Keith M; Ikuta, Toshikazu; Greene, Allison; Robinson, Delbert G; Gallego, Juan; Lencz, Todd; DeRosse, Pamela; Kingsley, Peter B; Szeszko, Philip R

    2018-05-09

    Prior functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) studies have investigated the neural mechanisms underlying cognitive control in patients with psychosis with findings of both hypo- and hyperfrontality. One factor that may contribute to inconsistent findings is the use of complex and polyfactorial tasks to investigate frontal lobe functioning. In the current study we employed a simple response conflict task during fMRI to examine differences in brain activation between patients experiencing their first-episode of psychosis (n = 33) and age- and sex-matched healthy volunteers (n = 33). We further investigated whether baseline brain activation among patients predicted changes in symptom severity and treatment response following 12 weeks of controlled antipsychotic treatment. During the task subjects were instructed to press a response button on the same side or opposite side of a circle that appeared on either side of a central fixation point. Imaging data revealed that for the contrast of opposite-side vs. same-side, patients showed significantly greater activation compared with healthy volunteers in the anterior cingulate cortex and intraparietal sulcus. Among patients, greater baseline anterior cingulate cortex, temporal-parietal junction, and superior temporal cortex activation predicted greater symptom reduction and therapeutic response following treatment. All findings remained significant after covarying for task performance. Intact performance on this relatively parsimonious task was associated with frontal hyperactivity suggesting the need for patients to utilize greater neural resources to achieve task performance comparable to healthy individuals. Moreover, frontal hyperactivity observed using a simple fMRI task may provide a biomarker for predicting treatment response in first-episode psychosis.

  19. Helicopter Pilot Performance for Discrete-maneuver Flight Tasks

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    1984-01-01

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

  20. Simple motor tasks independently predict extubation failure in critically ill neurological patients.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kutchak, Fernanda Machado; Rieder, Marcelo de Mello; Victorino, Josué Almeida; Meneguzzi, Carla; Poersch, Karla; Forgiarini, Luiz Alberto; Bianchin, Marino Muxfeldt

    2017-01-01

    To evaluate the usefulness of simple motor tasks such as hand grasping and tongue protrusion as predictors of extubation failure in critically ill neurological patients. This was a prospective cohort study conducted in the neurological ICU of a tertiary care hospital in the city of Porto Alegre, Brazil. Adult patients who had been intubated for neurological reasons and were eligible for weaning were included in the study. The ability of patients to perform simple motor tasks such as hand grasping and tongue protrusion was evaluated as a predictor of extubation failure. Data regarding duration of mechanical ventilation, length of ICU stay, length of hospital stay, mortality, and incidence of ventilator-associated pneumonia were collected. A total of 132 intubated patients who had been receiving mechanical ventilation for at least 24 h and who passed a spontaneous breathing trial were included in the analysis. Logistic regression showed that patient inability to grasp the hand of the examiner (relative risk = 1.57; 95% CI: 1.01-2.44; p commands is predictive of extubation failure in critically ill neurological patients. Hand grasping and tongue protrusion on command might be quick and easy bedside tests to identify neurocritical care patients who are candidates for extubation. Avaliar a utilidade de tarefas motoras simples, tais como preensão de mão e protrusão da língua, para predizer extubação malsucedida em pacientes neurológicos críticos. Estudo prospectivo de coorte realizado na UTI neurológica de um hospital terciário em Porto Alegre (RS). Pacientes adultos que haviam sido intubados por motivos neurológicos e que eram candidatos ao desmame foram incluídos no estudo. O estudo avaliou se a capacidade dos pacientes de realizar tarefas motoras simples como apertar as mãos do examinador e pôr a língua para fora seria um preditor de extubação malsucedida. Foram coletados dados referentes ao tempo de ventilação mecânica, tempo de internação na

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

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

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

    2008-01-01

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

  2. Action video games do not improve the speed of information processing in simple perceptual tasks

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    van Ravenzwaaij, D.; Boekel, W.; Forstmann, B.U.; Ratcliff, R.; Wagenmakers, E.-J.

    2014-01-01

    Previous research suggests that playing action video games improves performance on sensory, perceptual, and attentional tasks. For instance, Green, Pouget, and Bavelier (2010) used the diffusion model to decompose data from a motion detection task and estimate the contribution of several underlying

  3. Redundancy gains in simple responses and go/no-go tasks

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Gondan, Matthias; Götze, C.; Greenlee, M.W.

    2010-01-01

    In divided-attention tasks with two classes of target stimuli, participants typically respond more quickly if both targets are presented simultaneously, as compared with single-target presentation (redundant-signals effect). Different explanations exist for this effect, including serial, parallel...... times in both the simple and go/no-go responses were well explained by a common coactivation model assuming linear superposition of modality-specific activation. In Experiment 2, the go/no-go task was made more difficult. Participants had to respond to high-frequency tones or right-tilted Gabor patches...

  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. 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.

  6. Performance assessment task team progress report

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

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

    1994-05-01

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

  7. Task Performance induced Work Load in Nursing

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Shirazeh Arghami

    2015-12-01

    Full Text Available Background & objective: High workload may lead to increase human errors, compromise quality and safety of care, and reduce the nurses’ quality of working life. The aim of this study is to determine the task-induced workload in nursing. Methods: This is a descriptive analytical study. All of 214 nurses of one of the educational hospital took part in. After obtaining informed consent from participants, data were collected based on NASA-TLX questionnaire and the desired level assumed less than 50%. Analysis of data was performed by descriptive statistics and Anova in SPSS software (version 11. 0 at significant level of 0.05. Results: The results showed that perceived mental pressure for nurses is more than other NASA-TLX subscales (P< .001. Also, the mean perceived workload was more than 50%. However, mean workload score of NASA-TLX showed significant correlation with age (P< .001, work experience (P< .001, shift work (P< .02, and department (P< .001. Conclusion: The results show that effective programs will be required to reduce the work load, and to enhance nurses' performance

  8. 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.

  9. 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

  10. 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.

  11. 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…

  12. Training Excitatory-Inhibitory Recurrent Neural Networks for Cognitive Tasks: A Simple and Flexible Framework.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    H Francis Song

    2016-02-01

    Full Text Available The ability to simultaneously record from large numbers of neurons in behaving animals has ushered in a new era for the study of the neural circuit mechanisms underlying cognitive functions. One promising approach to uncovering the dynamical and computational principles governing population responses is to analyze model recurrent neural networks (RNNs that have been optimized to perform the same tasks as behaving animals. Because the optimization of network parameters specifies the desired output but not the manner in which to achieve this output, "trained" networks serve as a source of mechanistic hypotheses and a testing ground for data analyses that link neural computation to behavior. Complete access to the activity and connectivity of the circuit, and the ability to manipulate them arbitrarily, make trained networks a convenient proxy for biological circuits and a valuable platform for theoretical investigation. However, existing RNNs lack basic biological features such as the distinction between excitatory and inhibitory units (Dale's principle, which are essential if RNNs are to provide insights into the operation of biological circuits. Moreover, trained networks can achieve the same behavioral performance but differ substantially in their structure and dynamics, highlighting the need for a simple and flexible framework for the exploratory training of RNNs. Here, we describe a framework for gradient descent-based training of excitatory-inhibitory RNNs that can incorporate a variety of biological knowledge. We provide an implementation based on the machine learning library Theano, whose automatic differentiation capabilities facilitate modifications and extensions. We validate this framework by applying it to well-known experimental paradigms such as perceptual decision-making, context-dependent integration, multisensory integration, parametric working memory, and motor sequence generation. Our results demonstrate the wide range of neural

  13. Training Excitatory-Inhibitory Recurrent Neural Networks for Cognitive Tasks: A Simple and Flexible Framework

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wang, Xiao-Jing

    2016-01-01

    The ability to simultaneously record from large numbers of neurons in behaving animals has ushered in a new era for the study of the neural circuit mechanisms underlying cognitive functions. One promising approach to uncovering the dynamical and computational principles governing population responses is to analyze model recurrent neural networks (RNNs) that have been optimized to perform the same tasks as behaving animals. Because the optimization of network parameters specifies the desired output but not the manner in which to achieve this output, “trained” networks serve as a source of mechanistic hypotheses and a testing ground for data analyses that link neural computation to behavior. Complete access to the activity and connectivity of the circuit, and the ability to manipulate them arbitrarily, make trained networks a convenient proxy for biological circuits and a valuable platform for theoretical investigation. However, existing RNNs lack basic biological features such as the distinction between excitatory and inhibitory units (Dale’s principle), which are essential if RNNs are to provide insights into the operation of biological circuits. Moreover, trained networks can achieve the same behavioral performance but differ substantially in their structure and dynamics, highlighting the need for a simple and flexible framework for the exploratory training of RNNs. Here, we describe a framework for gradient descent-based training of excitatory-inhibitory RNNs that can incorporate a variety of biological knowledge. We provide an implementation based on the machine learning library Theano, whose automatic differentiation capabilities facilitate modifications and extensions. We validate this framework by applying it to well-known experimental paradigms such as perceptual decision-making, context-dependent integration, multisensory integration, parametric working memory, and motor sequence generation. Our results demonstrate the wide range of neural activity

  14. [Connectionist models of social learning: a case of learning by observing a simple task].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Paignon, A; Desrichard, O; Bollon, T

    2004-03-01

    alone is not sufficient to ensure accurate reproduction and must be made functional through the production phase (Deakin & Proteau, 2000). Results obtained through a second simulation replicate those produced by Bandura & Jeffery (1973), who observed that the individual tested following the retention phase recalled recorded information better than he realized in the production phase. The outcome of a third simulation shows that, when performing the transfer task, agents performed the task all the more effectively when they were required to learn a simple path which facilitated knowledge transfer to an adjacent situation. New explanatory assumptions of the mechanics of learning through observation may be produced through OLEANNet. Thus, observed deterioration between memorization and production is caused by successive approximations which occur in the acquisition phase then in the production phase. Further, depending on the type of learning undergone by agents, use of representation as a production guide induces a more or less stringent constraint in the approximation of actual behaviour. This results, during the transfer task, in the ability to effectively generalize acquired knowledge where such knowledge is not specifically related to the task at hand. In conclusion, connectionist model architecture appears valid for modeling learning through observation as defined by Bandura (1977). However, certain limitations appear during implementation, especially in terms of the observed behaviour's availability and the planning of produced behaviours that future developments are liable to counter.

  15. 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.

  16. 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.

  17. 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

  18. 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

  19. 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

  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. 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...

  2. 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.

  3. Task Performance with List-Mode Data

    Science.gov (United States)

    Caucci, Luca

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

  4. 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…

  5. 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.

  6. A simple method for assessment of muscle force, velocity, and power producing capacities from functional movement tasks.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zivkovic, Milena Z; Djuric, Sasa; Cuk, Ivan; Suzovic, Dejan; Jaric, Slobodan

    2017-07-01

    A range of force (F) and velocity (V) data obtained from functional movement tasks (e.g., running, jumping, throwing, lifting, cycling) performed under variety of external loads have typically revealed strong and approximately linear F-V relationships. The regression model parameters reveal the maximum F (F-intercept), V (V-intercept), and power (P) producing capacities of the tested muscles. The aim of the present study was to evaluate the level of agreement between the routinely used "multiple-load model" and a simple "two-load model" based on direct assessment of the F-V relationship from only 2 external loads applied. Twelve participants were tested on the maximum performance vertical jumps, cycling, bench press throws, and bench pull performed against a variety of different loads. All 4 tested tasks revealed both exceptionally strong relationships between the parameters of the 2 models (median R = 0.98) and a lack of meaningful differences between their magnitudes (fixed bias below 3.4%). Therefore, addition of another load to the standard tests of various functional tasks typically conducted under a single set of mechanical conditions could allow for the assessment of the muscle mechanical properties such as the muscle F, V, and P producing capacities.

  7. 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.

  8. Age and Sex Differences in Intra-Individual Variability in a Simple Reaction Time Task

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ghisletta, Paolo; Renaud, Olivier; Fagot, Delphine; Lecerf, Thierry; de Ribaupierre, Anik

    2018-01-01

    While age effects in reaction time (RT) tasks across the lifespan are well established for level of performance, analogous findings have started appearing also for indicators of intra-individual variability (IIV). Children are not only slower, but also display more variability than younger adults in RT. Yet, little is known about potential…

  9. 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…

  10. 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...

  11. Performance assessment of simple and modified cycle turboshaft gas turbines

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Barinyima Nkoi

    2013-06-01

    Full Text Available This paper focuses on investigations encompassing comparative assessment of gas turbine cycle options. More specifically, investigation was carried out of technical performance of turboshaft engine cycles based on existing simple cycle (SC and its projected modified cycles for civil helicopter application. Technically, thermal efficiency, specific fuel consumption, and power output are of paramount importance to the overall performance of gas turbine engines. In course of carrying out this research, turbomatch software established at Cranfield University based on gas turbine theory was applied to conduct simulation of a simple cycle (baseline two-spool helicopter turboshaft engine model with free power turbine. Similarly, some modified gas turbine cycle configurations incorporating unconventional components, such as engine cycle with low pressure compressor (LPC zero-staged, recuperated engine cycle, and intercooled/recuperated (ICR engine cycle, were also simulated. In doing so, design point (DP and off-design point (OD performances of the engine models were established. The percentage changes in performance parameters of the modified cycle engines over the simple cycle were evaluated and it was found that to a large extent, the modified engine cycles with unconventional components exhibit better performances in terms of thermal efficiency and specific fuel consumption than the traditional simple cycle engine. This research made use of public domain open source references.

  12. 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…

  13. 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…

  14. 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…

  15. 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.

  16. 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.

  17. 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 ...

  18. 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.

  19. Framing of task performance strategies: effects on performance in a multiattribute dynamic decision making environment.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nygren, T E

    1997-09-01

    It is well documented that the way a static choice task is "framed" can dramatically alter choice behavior, often leading to observable preference reversals. This framing effect appears to result from perceived changes in the nature or location of a person's initial reference point, but it is not clear how framing effects might generalize to performance on dynamic decision making tasks that are characterized by high workload, time constraints, risk, or stress. A study was conducted to examine the hypothesis that framing can introduce affective components to the decision making process and can influence, either favorably (positive frame) or adversely (negative frame), the implementation and use of decision making strategies in dynamic high-workload environments. Results indicated that negative frame participants were significantly impaired in developing and employing a simple optimal decision strategy relative to a positive frame group. Discussion focuses on implications of these results for models of dynamic decision making.

  20. Simple Plans or Sophisticated Habits? State, Transition and Learning Interactions in the Two-Step Task.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Akam, Thomas; Costa, Rui; Dayan, Peter

    2015-12-01

    The recently developed 'two-step' behavioural task promises to differentiate model-based from model-free reinforcement learning, while generating neurophysiologically-friendly decision datasets with parametric variation of decision variables. These desirable features have prompted its widespread adoption. Here, we analyse the interactions between a range of different strategies and the structure of transitions and outcomes in order to examine constraints on what can be learned from behavioural performance. The task involves a trade-off between the need for stochasticity, to allow strategies to be discriminated, and a need for determinism, so that it is worth subjects' investment of effort to exploit the contingencies optimally. We show through simulation that under certain conditions model-free strategies can masquerade as being model-based. We first show that seemingly innocuous modifications to the task structure can induce correlations between action values at the start of the trial and the subsequent trial events in such a way that analysis based on comparing successive trials can lead to erroneous conclusions. We confirm the power of a suggested correction to the analysis that can alleviate this problem. We then consider model-free reinforcement learning strategies that exploit correlations between where rewards are obtained and which actions have high expected value. These generate behaviour that appears model-based under these, and also more sophisticated, analyses. Exploiting the full potential of the two-step task as a tool for behavioural neuroscience requires an understanding of these issues.

  1. Simple Plans or Sophisticated Habits? State, Transition and Learning Interactions in the Two-Step Task

    Science.gov (United States)

    Akam, Thomas; Costa, Rui; Dayan, Peter

    2015-01-01

    The recently developed ‘two-step’ behavioural task promises to differentiate model-based from model-free reinforcement learning, while generating neurophysiologically-friendly decision datasets with parametric variation of decision variables. These desirable features have prompted its widespread adoption. Here, we analyse the interactions between a range of different strategies and the structure of transitions and outcomes in order to examine constraints on what can be learned from behavioural performance. The task involves a trade-off between the need for stochasticity, to allow strategies to be discriminated, and a need for determinism, so that it is worth subjects’ investment of effort to exploit the contingencies optimally. We show through simulation that under certain conditions model-free strategies can masquerade as being model-based. We first show that seemingly innocuous modifications to the task structure can induce correlations between action values at the start of the trial and the subsequent trial events in such a way that analysis based on comparing successive trials can lead to erroneous conclusions. We confirm the power of a suggested correction to the analysis that can alleviate this problem. We then consider model-free reinforcement learning strategies that exploit correlations between where rewards are obtained and which actions have high expected value. These generate behaviour that appears model-based under these, and also more sophisticated, analyses. Exploiting the full potential of the two-step task as a tool for behavioural neuroscience requires an understanding of these issues. PMID:26657806

  2. Simple Plans or Sophisticated Habits? State, Transition and Learning Interactions in the Two-Step Task.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Thomas Akam

    2015-12-01

    Full Text Available The recently developed 'two-step' behavioural task promises to differentiate model-based from model-free reinforcement learning, while generating neurophysiologically-friendly decision datasets with parametric variation of decision variables. These desirable features have prompted its widespread adoption. Here, we analyse the interactions between a range of different strategies and the structure of transitions and outcomes in order to examine constraints on what can be learned from behavioural performance. The task involves a trade-off between the need for stochasticity, to allow strategies to be discriminated, and a need for determinism, so that it is worth subjects' investment of effort to exploit the contingencies optimally. We show through simulation that under certain conditions model-free strategies can masquerade as being model-based. We first show that seemingly innocuous modifications to the task structure can induce correlations between action values at the start of the trial and the subsequent trial events in such a way that analysis based on comparing successive trials can lead to erroneous conclusions. We confirm the power of a suggested correction to the analysis that can alleviate this problem. We then consider model-free reinforcement learning strategies that exploit correlations between where rewards are obtained and which actions have high expected value. These generate behaviour that appears model-based under these, and also more sophisticated, analyses. Exploiting the full potential of the two-step task as a tool for behavioural neuroscience requires an understanding of these issues.

  3. 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

  4. 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

  5. Gait parameter risk factors for falls under simple and dual task conditions in cognitively impaired older people.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Taylor, Morag E; Delbaere, Kim; Mikolaizak, A Stefanie; Lord, Stephen R; Close, Jacqueline C T

    2013-01-01

    Impaired gait may contribute to the increased rate of falls in cognitively impaired older people. We investigated whether gait under simple and dual task conditions could predict falls in this group. The study sample consisted of 64 community dwelling older people with mild to moderate cognitive impairment. Participants walked at their preferred speed under three conditions: (a) simple walking, (b) walking while carrying a glass of water and (c) walking while counting backwards from 30. Spatiotemporal gait parameters were measured using the GAITRite(®) mat. Falls were recorded prospectively for 12months with the assistance of carers. Twenty-two (35%) people fell two or more times in the 12month follow-up period. There was a significant main effect of gait condition and a significant main effect of faller status for mean value measures (velocity, stride length, double support time and stride width) and for variability measures (swing time variability and stride length variability). Examination of individual gait parameters indicated that the multiple fallers walked more slowly, had shorter stride length, spent longer time in double support, had a wider support width and showed more variability in stride length and swing time (p<0.05). There was no significant interaction between gait condition and faller status for any of the gait variables. In conclusion, dual task activities adversely affect gait in cognitively impaired older people. Multiple fallers performed worse in each gait condition but the addition of a functional or cognitive secondary task provided no added benefit in discriminating fallers from non-fallers with cognitive impairment. Copyright © 2012 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  6. 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.

  7. 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

  8. 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...

  9. Teaching Software Developers to Perform UX Tasks

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Øvad, Tina; Bornoe, Nis; Larsen, Lars Bo

    2015-01-01

    . This is done via an action research study where the developers were provided with material concerning a modified AB usability test, by training them in performing this type of work, and by using their feedback to improve the method and the material. The overall result of the study is positive and it is found...... that by using the developers' feedback in the modification process, the method has truly become applicable within an agile, industrial setting. In combination with a guideline and template this has induced the developers to feel confident in independently performing this type of work....

  10. 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.

  11. 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.

  12. 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

  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. 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.

  15. 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.

  16. 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…

  17. 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…

  18. 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.

  19. 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.

  20. 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.

  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. 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...

  3. 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.

  4. 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).

  5. 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

  6. 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.

  7. 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.

  8. 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 ...

  9. 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.

  10. 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.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    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

  12. 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.

  13. 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

  14. 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. 

  15. 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.

  16. Task-specific modulation of effective connectivity during two simple unimanual motor tasks: A 122-channel EEG study

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Herz, Damian M.; Christensen, Mark S.; Reck, Christiane

    2012-01-01

    Neural oscillations are thought to underlie coupling of spatially remote neurons and gating of information within the human sensorimotor system. Here we tested the hypothesis that different unimanual motor tasks are specifically associated with distinct patterns of oscillatory coupling in human...

  17. 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

  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. 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...

  20. 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.

  1. 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.

  2. 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.

  3. 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

  4. Central as well as peripheral attentional bottlenecks in dual-task performance activate lateral prefrontal cortices

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Andre J Szameitat

    2016-03-01

    Full Text Available Human information processing suffers from severe limitations in parallel processing. In particular, when required to respond to two stimuli in rapid succession, processing bottlenecks may appear at central and peripheral stages of task processing. Importantly, it has been suggested that executive functions are needed to resolve the interference arising at such bottlenecks. The aims of the present study were to test whether central attentional limitations (i.e., bottleneck at the decisional response selection stage as well as peripheral limitations (i.e., bottleneck at response initiation both demand executive functions located in the lateral prefrontal cortex. For this, we re-analysed two previous studies, in which a total of 33 participants performed a dual-task according to the paradigm of the psychological refractory period (PRP during fMRI. In one study (N=17, the PRP task consisted of two two-choice response tasks known to suffer from a central bottleneck (CB group. In the other study (N=16, the PRP task consisted of two simple-response tasks known to suffer from a peripheral bottleneck (PB group. Both groups showed considerable dual-task costs in form of slowing of the second response in the dual-task (PRP effect. Imaging results are based on the subtraction of both single-tasks from the dual-task within each group. In the CB group, the bilateral middle frontal gyri and inferior frontal gyri were activated. Higher activation in these areas was associated with lower dual-task costs. In the PB group, the right middle frontal and inferior frontal gyrus were activated. Here, higher activation was associated with higher dual-task costs. In conclusion we suggest that central and peripheral bottlenecks both demand executive functions located in lateral prefrontal cortices. Differences between the CB and PB groups with respect to the exact prefrontal areas activated and the correlational patterns suggest that the executive functions resolving

  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. Comparison of Simple Versus Performance-Based Fall Prediction Models

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Shekhar K. Gadkaree BS

    2015-05-01

    Full Text Available Objective: To compare the predictive ability of standard falls prediction models based on physical performance assessments with more parsimonious prediction models based on self-reported data. Design: We developed a series of fall prediction models progressing in complexity and compared area under the receiver operating characteristic curve (AUC across models. Setting: National Health and Aging Trends Study (NHATS, which surveyed a nationally representative sample of Medicare enrollees (age ≥65 at baseline (Round 1: 2011-2012 and 1-year follow-up (Round 2: 2012-2013. Participants: In all, 6,056 community-dwelling individuals participated in Rounds 1 and 2 of NHATS. Measurements: Primary outcomes were 1-year incidence of “ any fall ” and “ recurrent falls .” Prediction models were compared and validated in development and validation sets, respectively. Results: A prediction model that included demographic information, self-reported problems with balance and coordination, and previous fall history was the most parsimonious model that optimized AUC for both any fall (AUC = 0.69, 95% confidence interval [CI] = [0.67, 0.71] and recurrent falls (AUC = 0.77, 95% CI = [0.74, 0.79] in the development set. Physical performance testing provided a marginal additional predictive value. Conclusion: A simple clinical prediction model that does not include physical performance testing could facilitate routine, widespread falls risk screening in the ambulatory care setting.

  7. 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).

  8. 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

  9. 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.

  10. 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.

  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. Problem Solving vs. Troubleshooting Tasks: The Case of Sixth-Grade Students Studying Simple Electric Circuits

    Science.gov (United States)

    Safadi, Rafi'; Yerushalmi, Edit

    2014-01-01

    We compared the materialization of knowledge integration processes in class discussions that followed troubleshooting (TS) and problem-solving (PS) tasks and examined the impact of these tasks on students' conceptual understanding. The study was conducted in two sixth-grade classes taught by the same teacher, in six lessons that constituted a…

  13. Simple, parallel, high-performance virtual machines for extreme computations

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Chokoufe Nejad, Bijan; Ohl, Thorsten; Reuter, Jurgen

    2014-11-01

    We introduce a high-performance virtual machine (VM) written in a numerically fast language like Fortran or C to evaluate very large expressions. We discuss the general concept of how to perform computations in terms of a VM and present specifically a VM that is able to compute tree-level cross sections for any number of external legs, given the corresponding byte code from the optimal matrix element generator, O'Mega. Furthermore, this approach allows to formulate the parallel computation of a single phase space point in a simple and obvious way. We analyze hereby the scaling behaviour with multiple threads as well as the benefits and drawbacks that are introduced with this method. Our implementation of a VM can run faster than the corresponding native, compiled code for certain processes and compilers, especially for very high multiplicities, and has in general runtimes in the same order of magnitude. By avoiding the tedious compile and link steps, which may fail for source code files of gigabyte sizes, new processes or complex higher order corrections that are currently out of reach could be evaluated with a VM given enough computing power.

  14. Investigation of grid performance using simple image quality tests

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Dogan Bor

    2016-01-01

    Full Text Available Antiscatter grids improve the X-ray image contrast at a cost of patient radiation doses. The choice of appropriate grid or its removal requires a good knowledge of grid characteristics, especially for pediatric digital imaging. The aim of this work is to understand the relation between grid performance parameters and some numerical image quality metrics for digital radiological examinations. The grid parameters such as bucky factor (BF, selectivity (Σ, Contrast improvement factor (CIF, and signal-to-noise improvement factor (SIF were determined following the measurements of primary, scatter, and total radiations with a digital fluoroscopic system for the thicknesses of 5, 10, 15, 20, and 25 cm polymethyl methacrylate blocks at the tube voltages of 70, 90, and 120 kVp. Image contrast for low- and high-contrast objects and high-contrast spatial resolution were measured with simple phantoms using the same scatter thicknesses and tube voltages. BF and SIF values were also calculated from the images obtained with and without grids. The correlation coefficients between BF values obtained using two approaches (grid parameters and image quality metrics were in good agreement. Proposed approach provides a quick and practical way of estimating grid performance for different digital fluoroscopic examinations.

  15. 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.

  16. Effects of aripiprazole and haloperidol on neural activation during a simple motor task in healthy individuals: A functional MRI study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Goozee, Rhianna; O'Daly, Owen; Handley, Rowena; Reis Marques, Tiago; Taylor, Heather; McQueen, Grant; Hubbard, Kathryn; Pariante, Carmine; Mondelli, Valeria; Reinders, Antje A T S; Dazzan, Paola

    2017-04-01

    The dopaminergic system plays a key role in motor function and motor abnormalities have been shown to be a specific feature of psychosis. Due to their dopaminergic action, antipsychotic drugs may be expected to modulate motor function, but the precise effects of these drugs on motor function remain unclear. We carried out a within-subject, double-blind, randomized study of the effects of aripiprazole, haloperidol and placebo on motor function in 20 healthy men. For each condition, motor performance on an auditory-paced task was investigated. We entered maps of neural activation into a random effects general linear regression model to investigate motor function main effects. Whole-brain imaging revealed a significant treatment effect in a distributed network encompassing posterior orbitofrontal/anterior insula cortices, and the inferior temporal and postcentral gyri. Post-hoc comparison of treatments showed neural activation after aripiprazole did not differ significantly from placebo in either voxel-wise or region of interest analyses, with the results above driven primarily by haloperidol. We also observed a simple main effect of haloperidol compared with placebo, with increased task-related recruitment of posterior cingulate and precentral gyri. Furthermore, region of interest analyses revealed greater activation following haloperidol compared with placebo in the precentral and post-central gyri, and the putamen. These diverse modifications in cortical motor activation may relate to the different pharmacological profiles of haloperidol and aripiprazole, although the specific mechanisms underlying these differences remain unclear. Evaluating healthy individuals can allow investigation of the effects of different antipsychotics on cortical activation, independently of either disease-related pathology or previous treatment. Hum Brain Mapp 38:1833-1845, 2017. © 2017 Wiley Periodicals, Inc. © 2016 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  17. 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.

  18. 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.

  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. 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

  1. 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…

  2. 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)

  3. 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)

  4. Ergonomic evaluation of tasks performed by female workers in the ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Two main types of task are performed by the female workers in the brick fields in the unorganized sectors viz, brick moulding and brick carrying. Modified Nordic Questionnaire and Body Part Discomfort (BPD) scale was applied on these workers to identify the MSDs and the zones of discomfort in different body parts.

  5. 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...

  6. 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

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    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…

  8. 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

  9. 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

  10. 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.

  11. 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

  12. 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.

  13. 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…

  14. 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

  15. 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.

  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. 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.

  18. 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.

  19. 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.

  20. 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.

  1. 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

  2. Sustaining attention to simple visual tasks: a central deficit in schizophrenia? A systematic review.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hoonakker, Marc; Doignon-Camus, Nadège; Bonnefond, Anne

    2017-11-01

    Impairments in sustained attention, that is, the ability to achieve and maintain the focus of cognitive activity on a given stimulation source or task, have been described as central to schizophrenia. Today, sustained attention deficit is still considered as a hallmark of schizophrenia. Nevertheless, current findings on this topic are not consistent. To clarify these findings, we attempt to put these results into perspective according to the type of assessment (i.e., overall and over time assessment), the participants' characteristics (i.e., clinical and demographic characteristics), and the paradigms (i.e., traditionally formatted tasks, go/no-go tasks, and the sustained attention task) and measures used. Two types of assessment lead to opposite findings; they do not evaluate sustained attention the same way. Studies using overall assessments of sustained attention ability tend to reveal a deficit, whereas studies using over time assessments do not. Therefore, further research is needed to investigate the underlying cognitive control mechanisms of changes in sustained attention in schizophrenia. © 2017 New York Academy of Sciences.

  3. 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.

  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. 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.

  6. 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.

  7. 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

  8. 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.

  9. 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.

  10. 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.

  11. 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.

  12. 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.

  13. 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

  14. 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.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2009-06-01

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

  16. 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,…

  17. 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.…

  18. The comparison of Selective Attention Deficit in Dual Task Performance in Elderly Alzheimer Patients and Healthy Elderly Individuals

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    A. m. Azadian

    2014-06-01

    Full Text Available The purpose of this study was to compare selective attention deficit in elderly Alzheimer patients and healthy elderly individuals using the dual task. Therefore, 23 subjects (11 females and 12 males age 62 to 81 years; 13 patients with Alzheimer's disease (AD and 10 healthy elderly subjects (EHI with normal cognitive function participated in this study. people with Alzheimer's disease. healthy people was selected through some neurologist identified Short Portable Mental Status Questionnaire (SPMSQ. After obtaining the average number of correct counting of months of the year in both simple and difficult cognitive task the overall error (E or Root Mean Squared Error (RMSE, and variable error (VE were calculated for the tracking task. Then each person performed 10 tasks simultaneously (under Dual-task in both simple and difficult mode. Analysis of variance in cognitive tasks showed that there was a significant interaction between task difficulty and risk of AD (p0.05. In other words, at dual conditions of tracking task, accuracy and consistency of both groups was equally reduced, which was most prominent in difficult conditions. This decrease indicates increased interference at response level due to defects in the mechanisms of selective attention in dual cognitive and tracking tasks and both groups.

  19. The Influence of Different Performance Level of Fencers on Simple and Choice Reaction Time

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Štefan Balkó

    2016-09-01

    Full Text Available DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.5007/1980-0037.2016v18n4p391   In many sport disciplines reaction time plays a key role in the sport performance. It is good to point out for example ball games or fighting sports (fencing, karate etc.. The research is focused on detection of the differences in the simple and choice reaction time during visual stimulation among elite, sub-elite fencers and beginners. For the measurement a Fitrosword device and the SWORD software were used. An additional stimulus was added during measuring which should increase the overall number of stimuli, but shouldn’t force fencer to any reaction whatsoever. The results from presented study can be compared with Hicks law. The next focus of the study was to identify the difference in reaction time during two different movement tasks with different complexity movement requirements. The research was built up on a hypothesis that the results will differ among different performance groups of fencers. The difference however was overt among beginners and elite fencers (p = 0.0088, d = 0.5 in reaction time during different movement tasks (direct hit vs. lunge. The results of this research could be useful to trainers for training process organisation and increase the effectivity of muscle coordination during several movements in fencing.

  20. IEA SHC Task 42/ECES Annex 29 – A Simple Tool for the Economic Evaluation of Thermal Energy Storages

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Rathgeber, Christoph; Hiebler, Stefan; Lävemann, Eberhard

    2016-01-01

    Within the framework of IEA SHC Task 42 / ECES Annex 29, a simple tool for the economic evaluation of thermal energy storages has been developed and tested on various existing storages. On that account, the storage capacity costs (costs per installed storage capacity) of thermal energy storages...... have been evaluated via a Top-down and a Bottom-up approach. The Top-down approach follows the assumption that the costs of energy supplied by the storage should not exceed the costs of energy from the market. The maximum acceptable storage capacity costs depend on the interest rate assigned...

  1. The effects of age, illustrations, and task variables on the performance of procedural assembly tasks.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Morrell, R W; Park, D C

    1993-09-01

    Older adults may be disadvantaged in the performance of procedural assembly tasks because of age-related declines in working memory operations. It was hypothesized that adding illustrations to instructional text may lessen age-related performance differences by minimizing processing demands on working memory in the elderly. In the present study, younger and older adults constructed a series of 3-dimensional objects from 3 types of instructions (text only, illustration only, or text and illustrations). Results indicated that instructions consisting of text and illustrations reduced errors in construction for both age groups compared with the other formats. Younger adults, however, outperformed older adults under all instructional format conditions. Measures of spatial and verbal working memory and text comprehension ability accounted for substantial age-related variance across the different format conditions but did not fully account for the age differences observed.

  2. Effect of temperature on task performance in officeenvironment

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

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

    2006-07-01

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

  3. 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.

  4. The evidence for hippocampal long-term potentiation as a basis of memory for simple tasks

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Iván Izquierdo

    2008-03-01

    Full Text Available Long-term potentiation (LTP is the enhancement of postsynaptic responses for hours, days or weeks following the brief repetitive afferent stimulation of presynaptic afferents. It has been proposed many times over the last 30 years to be the basis of long-term memory. Several recent findings finally supported this hypothesis: a memory formation of one-trial avoidance learning depends on a series of molecular steps in the CA1 region of the hippocampus almost identical to those of LTP in the same region; bhippocampal LTP in this region accompanies memory formation of that task and of another similar task. However, CA1 LTP and the accompanying memory processes can be dissociated, and in addition plastic events in several other brain regions(amygdala, entorhinal cortex, parietal cortex are also necessary for memory formation of the one-trial task, and perhaps of many others.A potenciação de longa duração (LTP é o aumento de respostas pós-sinápticas durante horas, dias ou semanas após a breve estimulação repetitiva de aferentes pre-sinápticos. Foi proposto durante 30 anos ser a base da memória de longa duração. Vários achados recentes finalmente apoiaram esta hipótese: a a formação da memória de esquiva inibitória adquirida numa sessão depende de uma cadeia de processos moleculares na região CA1 do hipocampo quase idêntica à da LTP nessa mesma região; b LTP hipocampal nessa região acompanha a formação da memóría dessa tarefa e de outra semelhante. No entanto, a LTP de CA1 e os processos de memória podem ser dissociados e, fora disso, processos plásticos em outras regiões cerebrais (amígdala, córtex entorrinal, córtex parietal também são necessários para a formação da memória da tarefa de uma sessão e talvez de muitas outras.

  5. 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

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

  6. 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.

  7. 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.

  8. 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.

  9. EFFECTIVE INDICES FOR MONITORING MENTAL WORKLOAD WHILE PERFORMING MULTIPLE TASKS.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hsu, Bin-Wei; Wang, Mao-Jiun J; Chen, Chi-Yuan; Chen, Fang

    2015-08-01

    This study identified several physiological indices that can accurately monitor mental workload while participants performed multiple tasks with the strategy of maintaining stable performance and maximizing accuracy. Thirty male participants completed three 10-min. simulated multitasks: MATB (Multi-Attribute Task Battery) with three workload levels. Twenty-five commonly used mental workload measures were collected, including heart rate, 12 HRV (heart rate variability), 10 EEG (electroencephalography) indices (α, β, θ, α/θ, θ/β from O1-O2 and F4-C4), and two subjective measures. Analyses of index sensitivity showed that two EEG indices, θ and α/θ (F4-C4), one time-domain HRV-SDNN (standard deviation of inter-beat intervals), and four frequency-domain HRV: VLF (very low frequency), LF (low frequency), %HF (percentage of high frequency), and LF/HF were sensitive to differentiate high workload. EEG α/θ (F4-C4) and LF/HF were most effective for monitoring high mental workload. LF/HF showed the highest correlations with other physiological indices. EEG α/θ (F4-C4) showed strong correlations with subjective measures across different mental workload levels. Operation strategy would affect the sensitivity of EEG α (F4-C4) and HF.

  10. 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

  11. 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.

  12. Motor planning flexibly optimizes performance under uncertainty about task goals.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wong, Aaron L; Haith, Adrian M

    2017-03-03

    In an environment full of potential goals, how does the brain determine which movement to execute? Existing theories posit that the motor system prepares for all potential goals by generating several motor plans in parallel. One major line of evidence for such theories is that presenting two competing goals often results in a movement intermediate between them. These intermediate movements are thought to reflect an unintentional averaging of the competing plans. However, normative theories suggest instead that intermediate movements might actually be deliberate, generated because they improve task performance over a random guessing strategy. To test this hypothesis, we vary the benefit of making an intermediate movement by changing movement speed. We find that participants generate intermediate movements only at (slower) speeds where they measurably improve performance. Our findings support the normative view that the motor system selects only a single, flexible motor plan, optimized for uncertain goals.

  13. 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.

  14. 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.

  15. Analysis of Simvastatin using a Simple and Fast High Performance ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    performance liquid chromatography (RP-HPLC) analytical method for the lipid lowering drug, simvastatin, and to apply the developed method to study the solubility of the drug in various ..... Takano T, Abe S, Hata S. A selected ion monitoring.

  16. 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...

  17. 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...

  18. 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…

  19. 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…

  20. 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)…

  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. 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…

  3. Good distractions: Testing the effects of listening to an audiobook on driving performance in simple and complex road environments.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nowosielski, Robert J; Trick, Lana M; Toxopeus, Ryan

    2018-02-01

    Distracted driving (driving while performing a secondary task) causes many collisions. Most research on distracted driving has focused on operating a cell-phone, but distracted driving can include eating while driving, conversing with passengers or listening to music or audiobooks. Although the research has focused on the deleterious effects of distraction, there may be situations where distraction improves driving performance. Fatigue and boredom are also associated with collision risk and it is possible that secondary tasks can help alleviate the effects of fatigue and boredom. Furthermore, it has been found that individuals with high levels of executive functioning as measured by the OSPAN (Operation Span) task show better driving while multitasking. In this study, licensed drivers were tested in a driving simulator (a car body surrounded by screens) that simulated simple or complex roads. Road complexity was manipulated by increasing traffic, scenery, and the number of curves in the drive. Participants either drove, or drove while listening to an audiobook. Driving performance was measured in terms of braking response time to hazards (HRT): the time required to brake in response to pedestrians or vehicles that suddenly emerged from the periphery into the path of the vehicle, speed, standard deviation of speed, standard deviation of lateral position (SDLP). Overall, braking times to hazards were higher on the complex drive than the simple one, though the effects of secondary tasks such as audiobooks were especially deleterious on the complex drive. In contrast, on the simple drive, driving while listening to an audiobook lead to faster HRT. We found evidence that individuals with high OSPAN scores had faster HRTs when listening to an audiobook. These results suggest that there are environmental and individual factors behind difference in the allocation of attention while listening to audiobooks while driving. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  4. 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).

  5. Performance effects of nicotine during selective attention, divided attention, and simple stimulus detection: an fMRI study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hahn, Britta; Ross, Thomas J; Wolkenberg, Frank A; Shakleya, Diaa M; Huestis, Marilyn A; Stein, Elliot A

    2009-09-01

    Attention-enhancing effects of nicotine appear to depend on the nature of the attentional function. Underlying neuroanatomical mechanisms, too, may vary depending on the function modulated. This functional magnetic resonance imaging study recorded blood oxygen level-dependent (BOLD) activity in minimally deprived smokers during tasks of simple stimulus detection, selective attention, or divided attention after single-blind application of a transdermal nicotine (21 mg) or placebo patch. Smokers' performance in the placebo condition was unimpaired as compared with matched nonsmokers. Nicotine reduced reaction time (RT) in the stimulus detection and selective attention but not divided attention condition. Across all task conditions, nicotine reduced activation in frontal, temporal, thalamic, and visual regions and enhanced deactivation in so-called "default" regions. Thalamic effects correlated with RT reduction selectively during stimulus detection. An interaction with task condition was observed in middle and superior frontal gyri, where nicotine reduced activation only during stimulus detection. A visuomotor control experiment provided evidence against nonspecific effects of nicotine. In conclusion, although prefrontal activity partly displayed differential modulation by nicotine, most BOLD effects were identical across tasks, despite differential performance effects, suggesting that common neuronal mechanisms can selectively benefit different attentional functions. Overall, the effects of nicotine may be explained by increased functional efficiency and downregulated task-independent "default" functions.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2013-01-01

    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…

  7. Upper Extremity Motor Learning among Individuals with Parkinson's Disease: A Meta-Analysis Evaluating Movement Time in Simple Tasks

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    K. Felix

    2012-01-01

    Full Text Available Motor learning has been found to occur in the rehabilitation of individuals with Parkinson's disease (PD. Through repetitive structured practice of motor tasks, individuals show improved performance, confirming that motor learning has probably taken place. Although a number of studies have been completed evaluating motor learning in people with PD, the sample sizes were small and the improvements were variable. The purpose of this meta-analysis was to determine the ability of people with PD to learn motor tasks. Studies which measured movement time in upper extremity reaching tasks and met the inclusion criteria were included in the analysis. Results of the meta-analysis indicated that people with PD and neurologically healthy controls both demonstrated motor learning, characterized by a decrease in movement time during upper extremity movements. Movement time improvements were greater in the control group than in individuals with PD. These results support the findings that the practice of upper extremity reaching tasks is beneficial in reducing movement time in persons with PD and has important implications for rehabilitation.

  8. 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.

  9. Rule induction performance in amnestic mild cognitive impairment and Alzheimer's dementia: examining the role of simple and biconditional rule learning processes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Oosterman, Joukje M; Heringa, Sophie M; Kessels, Roy P C; Biessels, Geert Jan; Koek, Huiberdina L; Maes, Joseph H R; van den Berg, Esther

    2017-04-01

    Rule induction tests such as the Wisconsin Card Sorting Test require executive control processes, but also the learning and memorization of simple stimulus-response rules. In this study, we examined the contribution of diminished learning and memorization of simple rules to complex rule induction test performance in patients with amnestic mild cognitive impairment (aMCI) or Alzheimer's dementia (AD). Twenty-six aMCI patients, 39 AD patients, and 32 control participants were included. A task was used in which the memory load and the complexity of the rules were independently manipulated. This task consisted of three conditions: a simple two-rule learning condition (Condition 1), a simple four-rule learning condition (inducing an increase in memory load, Condition 2), and a complex biconditional four-rule learning condition-inducing an increase in complexity and, hence, executive control load (Condition 3). Performance of AD patients declined disproportionately when the number of simple rules that had to be memorized increased (from Condition 1 to 2). An additional increment in complexity (from Condition 2 to 3) did not, however, disproportionately affect performance of the patients. Performance of the aMCI patients did not differ from that of the control participants. In the patient group, correlation analysis showed that memory performance correlated with Condition 1 performance, whereas executive task performance correlated with Condition 2 performance. These results indicate that the reduced learning and memorization of underlying task rules explains a significant part of the diminished complex rule induction performance commonly reported in AD, although results from the correlation analysis suggest involvement of executive control functions as well. Taken together, these findings suggest that care is needed when interpreting rule induction task performance in terms of executive function deficits in these patients.

  10. Effectiveness of a Forward Collision Warning System in simple and in dual task from an electrophysiological perspective.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bueno, Mercedes; Fort, Alexandra; Francois, Mathilde; Ndiaye, Daniel; Deleurence, Philippe; Fabrigoule, Colette

    2013-04-29

    Forward Collision Warning Systems (FCWS) are expected to assist drivers; however, it is not completely clear whether these systems are of benefit to distracted drivers as much as they are to undistracted drivers. This study aims at investigating further the analysis of the effectiveness of a surrogate FCWS according to the attentional state of participants. In this experiment electrophysiological and behavioural data were recording while participants were required to drive in a simple car simulator and to react to the braking of the lead vehicle which could be announced by a warning system. The effectiveness of this warning system was evaluated when drivers were distracted or not by a secondary cognitive task. In a previous study, the warning signal was not completely effective likely due to the presence of another predictor of the forthcoming braking which competes with the warning. By eliminating this secondary predictor in the present study, the results confirmed the negative effect of the secondary task and revealed the expected effectiveness of the warning system at behavioural and electrophysiological levels. Copyright © 2013 Elsevier Ireland Ltd. All rights reserved.

  11. 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…

  12. 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.

  13. 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....

  14. 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…

  15. 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…

  16. 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.

  17. 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

  18. Group cohesion, task performance, and the experimenter expectancy effect.

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Hoogstraten, J.; Vorst, H.C.M.

    1978-01-01

    Studied the effects of cohesion on task fulfillment and explored the influence of task fulfillment on the initial level of cohesion. Within 4-person groups of undergraduates, cohesion was manipulated successfully by a triple procedure. The level of cohesion was ascertained directly after the

  19. Variability and reduced performance of preschool- and early school-aged children on psychoacoustic tasks: What are the relevant factors?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Allen, Prudence

    2003-04-01

    Young children typically perform more poorly on psychoacoustic tasks than do adults, with large individual differences. When performance is averaged across children within age groups, the data suggest a gradual change in performance with increasing age. However, an examination of individual data suggests that the performance matures more rapidly, although at different times for different children. The mechanisms of development responsible for these changes are likely very complex, involving both sensory and cognitive processes. This paper will discuss some previously suggested mechanisms including attention and cue weighting, as well as possibilities suggested from more recent studies in which learning effects were examined. In one task, a simple frequency discrimination was required, while in another the listener was required to extract regularities in complex sequences of sounds that varied from trial to trial. Results suggested that the ability to select and consistently employ an effective listening strategy was especially important in the performance of the more complex task, while simple stimulus exposure and motivation contributed to the simpler task. These factors are important for understanding the perceptual development and for the subsequent application of psychoacoustic findings to clinical populations. [Work supported by the NSERC and the Canadian Language and Literacy Research Network.

  20. 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

  1. 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

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

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

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

    2018-01-01

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

  3. 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.

  4. 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.

  5. Comparison of model and human observer performance for detection and discrimination tasks using dual-energy x-ray images

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Richard, Samuel; Siewerdsen, Jeffrey H.

    2008-01-01

    Model observer performance, computed theoretically using cascaded systems analysis (CSA), was compared to the performance of human observers in detection and discrimination tasks. Dual-energy (DE) imaging provided a wide range of acquisition and decomposition parameters for which observer performance could be predicted and measured. This work combined previously derived observer models (e.g., Fisher-Hotelling and non-prewhitening) with CSA modeling of the DE image noise-equivalent quanta (NEQ) and imaging task (e.g., sphere detection, shape discrimination, and texture discrimination) to yield theoretical predictions of detectability index (d ' ) and area under the receiver operating characteristic (A Z ). Theoretical predictions were compared to human observer performance assessed using 9-alternative forced-choice tests to yield measurement of A Z as a function of DE image acquisition parameters (viz., allocation of dose between the low- and high-energy images) and decomposition technique [viz., three DE image decomposition algorithms: standard log subtraction (SLS), simple-smoothing of the high-energy image (SSH), and anti-correlated noise reduction (ACNR)]. Results showed good agreement between theory and measurements over a broad range of imaging conditions. The incorporation of an eye filter and internal noise in the observer models demonstrated improved correspondence with human observer performance. Optimal acquisition and decomposition parameters were shown to depend on the imaging task; for example, ACNR and SSH yielded the greatest performance in the detection of soft-tissue and bony lesions, respectively. This study provides encouraging evidence that Fourier-based modeling of NEQ computed via CSA and imaging task provides a good approximation to human observer performance for simple imaging tasks, helping to bridge the gap between Fourier metrics of detector performance (e.g., NEQ) and human observer performance.

  6. 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.

  7. 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.

  8. 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.

  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. 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.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dunn, Naomi; Williamson, Ann

    2012-01-01

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

  12. Electrotactile feedback improves performance and facilitates learning in the routine grasping task

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Milica Isaković

    2016-06-01

    Full Text Available Aim of this study was to investigate the feasibility of electrotactile feedback in closed loop training of force control during the routine grasping task. The feedback was provided using an array electrode and a simple six-level spatial coding, and the experiment was conducted in three amputee subjects. The psychometric tests confirmed that the subjects could perceive and interpret the electrotactile feedback with a high success rate. The subjects performed the routine grasping task comprising 4 blocks of 60 grasping trials. In each trial, the subjects employed feedforward control to close the hand and produce the desired grasping force (four levels. First (baseline and the last (validation session were performed in open loop, while the second and the third session (training included electrotactile feedback. The obtained results confirmed that using the feedback improved the accuracy and precision of the force control. In addition, the subjects performed significantly better in the validation vs. baseline session, therefore suggesting that electrotactile feedback can be used for learning and training of myoelectric control.

  13. Electrotactile Feedback Improves Performance and Facilitates Learning in the Routine Grasping Task.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Isaković, Milica; Belić, Minja; Štrbac, Matija; Popović, Igor; Došen, Strahinja; Farina, Dario; Keller, Thierry

    2016-06-13

    Aim of this study was to investigate the feasibility of electrotactile feedback in closed loop training of force control during the routine grasping task. The feedback was provided using an array electrode and a simple six-level spatial coding, and the experiment was conducted in three amputee subjects. The psychometric tests confirmed that the subjects could perceive and interpret the electrotactile feedback with a high success rate. The subjects performed the routine grasping task comprising 4 blocks of 60 grasping trials. In each trial, the subjects employed feedforward control to close the hand and produce the desired grasping force (four levels). First (baseline) and the last (validation) session were performed in open loop, while the second and the third session (training) included electrotactile feedback. The obtained results confirmed that using the feedback improved the accuracy and precision of the force control. In addition, the subjects performed significantly better in the validation vs. baseline session, therefore suggesting that electrotactile feedback can be used for learning and training of myoelectric control.

  14. Coordination and collective performance: Cooperative goals boost interpersonal synchrony and task outcomes

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jamie S. Allsop

    2016-09-01

    Full Text Available Whether it be a rugby team or a rescue crew, ensuring peak group performance is a primary goal during collective activities. In reality however, groups often suffer from productivity losses that can lead to less than optimal outputs. Where researchers have focused on this problem, inefficiencies in the way team members coordinate their efforts has been identified as one potent source of productivity decrements. Here we set out to explore whether performance on a simple object movement task is shaped by the spontaneous emergence of interpersonally coordinated behavior. Forty-six pairs of participants were instructed to either compete or cooperate in order to empty a container of approximately 100 small plastic balls as quickly and accurately as possible. Each trial was recorded to video and a frame-differencing approach was employed to estimate between-person coordination. The results revealed that cooperative pairs coordinated to a greater extent than their competitive counterparts. Furthermore, coordination, as well as movement regularity were positively related to accuracy, an effect that was most prominent when the task was structured such that opportunities to coordinate were restricted. These findings are discussed with regard to contemporary theories of coordination and collective performance.

  15. Transcranial direct current stimulation (tDCS) to the supplementary motor area (SMA) influences performance on motor tasks.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hupfeld, K E; Ketcham, C J; Schneider, H D

    2017-03-01

    The supplementary motor area (SMA) is believed to be highly involved in the planning and execution of both simple and complex motor tasks. This study aimed to examine the role of the SMA in planning the movements required to complete reaction time, balance, and pegboard tasks using anodal transcranial direct current stimulation (tDCS), which passes a weak electrical current between two electrodes, in order to modulate neuronal activity. Twenty healthy adults were counterbalanced to receive either tDCS (experimental condition) or no tDCS (control condition) for 3 days. During administration of tDCS, participants performed a balance task significantly faster than controls. After tDCS, subjects significantly improved their simple and choice reaction time. These results demonstrate that the SMA is highly involved in planning and executing fine and gross motor skill tasks and that tDCS is an effective modality for increasing SMA-related performance on these tasks. The findings may be generalizable and therefore indicate implications for future interventions using tDCS as a therapeutic tool.

  16. 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…

  17. 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…

  18. Routing Cooperating Vehicles to Perform Precedence-Linked Tasks

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Vakhutinsky, Andrew; Wu, Cynara

    2005-01-01

    The problem of scheduling cooperating vehicles is a generalization of the classical vehicle routing problem where certain tasks are linked by precedence constraints and vehicles have varying constrained resources...

  19. 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.

  20. 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.

  1. 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.

  2. 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.

  3. 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

  4. 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.

  5. 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.

  6. 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.

  7. 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.

  8. 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).

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bernabel, Rodolpho Talaisys; Oliveira, Amâncio

    2017-01-01

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

  10. Who does the public think should perform health care tasks?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Koteski, D R; McKinney, S

    1988-10-01

    The dietitian was identified as the most appropriate provider of such key nutrition services as nutrition assessment, determination of caloric requirements, provision of diet counseling, and prescription of diets. Several tasks fundamental to nutrition services were not viewed as highly suitable tasks for the dietitian, e.g., plan for care at home, monitor client progress, and check laboratory values. Activities that constitute key nutrition services need to be accentuated to clarify the numerous skills and extensive knowledge that dietitians possess. In the health care system of today, the dietetic profession must be associated with a wider range of health-related tasks than the traditional triad of diet, food, and hospital. Public relations and marketing strategies should focus on activities that provide the public with a clearer understanding of how the dietetic profession contributes to patient/client care.

  11. Predictors of operator performance at a simulated nuclear power plant control task

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Spettell, C.M.

    1986-01-01

    Male undergraduates participated in two experiments as operators of a simple dynamic nuclear power plant simulated on a personal computer. Their task involved monitoring the temperature and power output of the plant and controlling the flow of coolants and the position of the control rods to ensure that the plant operated at the desired temperature and output levels. Quality of performance was defined as the operator's ability to minimize the deviations in temperature and output from optimal values during the trials. Operator inputs and the status of all plant variables were recorded on-line every two seconds. Based on a review of human factors engineering and psychological literature, a number of personality, background, and process variables were measured and correlated with operator performance. Results of both experiments indicated that the strongest predictors of operator performance were the rate, magnitude, and accuracy of operator inputs. Input rate and magnitude were negatively related to overall performance; input accuracy was positively related to performance. These process variables and overall performance were relatively stable across trials of varying difficulty

  12. 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.

  13. 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.

  14. Effects of long-term practice and task complexity on brain activities when performing abacus-based mental calculations: a PET study

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Wu, Tung-Hsin; Chen, Chia-Lin; Huang, Yung-Hui; Liu, Ren-Shyan; Hsieh, Jen-Chuen; Lee, Jason J.S.

    2009-01-01

    The aim of this study was to examine the neural bases for the exceptional mental calculation ability possessed by Chinese abacus experts through PET imaging. We compared the different regional cerebral blood flow (rCBF) patterns using 15 O-water PET in 10 abacus experts and 12 non-experts while they were performing each of the following three tasks: covert reading, simple addition, and complex contiguous addition. All data collected were analyzed using SPM2 and MNI templates. For non-experts during the tasks of simple addition, the observed activation of brain regions were associated with coordination of language (inferior frontal network) and visuospatial processing (left parietal/frontal network). Similar activation patterns but with a larger visuospatial processing involvement were observed during complex contiguous addition tasks, suggesting the recruitment of more visuospatial memory for solving the complex problems. For abacus experts, however, the brain activation patterns showed slight differences when they were performing simple and complex addition tasks, both of which involve visuospatial processing (bilateral parietal/frontal network). These findings supported the notion that the experts were completing all the calculation process on a virtual mental abacus and relying on this same computational strategy in both simple and complex tasks, which required almost no increasing brain workload for solving the latter. In conclusion, after intensive training and practice, the neural pathways in an abacus expert have been connected more effectively for performing the number encoding and retrieval that are required in abacus tasks, resulting in exceptional mental computational ability. (orig.)

  15. 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

  16. 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.

  17. 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…

  18. 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.

  19. 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

  20. Absorbed in the task : Personality measures predict engagement during task performance as tracked by error negativity and asymmetrical frontal activity

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Tops, Mattie; Boksem, Maarten A. S.

    2010-01-01

    We hypothesized that interactions between traits and context predict task engagement, as measured by the amplitude of the error-related negativity (ERN), performance, and relative frontal activity asymmetry (RFA). In Study 1, we found that drive for reward, absorption, and constraint independently

  1. 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…

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    Buckhalt, Joseph A

    2011-01-01

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

  3. Processing Resources in Attention, Dual Task Performance, and Workload Assessment.

    Science.gov (United States)

    1981-07-01

    levels of processing in encoding and memory ( Craik & Lockhart , 1972) employs the capacity metaphore when describing the amount of processing ...depending upon the nature of a paired task. Second, encoding or rehearsal of verbal material may differ in the "depth of processing " ( Craik & Lockhart ...F.I.M., & Lockhart , F.S. Levels of processing : A framework for mem- ory research. Journal of Verbal Learning & Verbal Behavior, 1972, 11, 671-684.

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

    OpenAIRE

    Buckhalt, Joseph A.

    2011-01-01

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

  5. Effect of a Body Model on Performance in a Virtual Environment Search Task

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Singer, Michael

    1998-01-01

    ...) in training dismounted soldiers. This experiment investigated full body representation (generic) versus a hand linked pointer on movement performance in an office building interior during a search task...

  6. Evaluation of workers' perceived sense of slip and effect of prior knowledge of slipperiness during task performance on slippery surfaces.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chiou, S; Bhattacharya, A; Succop, P A

    2000-01-01

    Forty healthy industrial workers (age: 41.0+/-14.9 years) were tested for postural stability for three simulated tasks: (1) standing upright; (2) rapid trunk movement; and (3) lateral reach during lifting. These tasks were performed on four levels of slippery surfaces under different environmental lighting with new or workers' own old shoes. Prior to postural stability tests, each subject was given the opportunity to assess the surface slipperiness that he or she would encounter in the subsequent postural stability tests. A perceived sense of slip (PSOS) scale was administrated immediately after each test to determine subjects' PSOS. Subjects' postural sway and instability during task performance was determined by using a strain gauge type force platform. Results from this study indicate that subjects who were cautious in assessing surface slipperiness had less postural instability during task performance. Subjects could perceive the likely slips due to the change in task (p=0.0001) and surface slipperiness (p=0.0001). The PSOS scale is reproducible, easy to use, and provides a simple way to evaluate potential slip hazards in the workplace. Results from this study should aid understanding of the factors critical to maintaining postural stability on slippery surfaces, and will help to develop guidelines for safety training and identify slip hazards in the workplace.

  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. Staff Performance Analysis: A Method for Identifying Brigade Staff Tasks

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Ford, Laura

    1997-01-01

    ... members of conventional mounted brigade staff. Initial analysis of performance requirements in existing documentation revealed that the performance specifications were not sufficiently detailed for brigade battle staffs...

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2013-04-01

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

  10. 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.

  11. Effects of age and the use of hands-free cellular phones on driving behavior and task performance.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Liu, Yung-Ching; Ou, Yang-Kun

    2011-12-01

    This study used a driving simulator to investigate the effect of using a Bluetooth hands-free cellular phone earpiece on the driving behavior of two age groups. Forty-eight participants (24 aged 20-26 and 24 aged 65-73) were examined to assess their performance on the following divided-attention tasks under 2 driving load conditions (high and low): (1) attempting to maintain the speed limit and (2) using a cellular phone while driving. The length of the call conversation (long vs. short) and the conversational content (complex vs. simple) were manipulated as within-subject independent variables. The driving behavior of the participants, their task reaction times and accuracy, and subjective ratings were collected as dependent variables. The results indicate that under low driving loads, short talk times, and simple conversational content, the driving behavior of the participants showed low variance in the vehicle's mean speed. In contrast, complex conversation had a significantly negative impact on driving behavior. Notably, under a low driving load, motorists' driving behaviors, measured in lateral acceleration, caused significantly smaller variance in complex conversations compared to no call and simple conversations. The use of a hands-free cellular phone affected the performance (acceleration, lane deviation, reaction time, and accuracy) of older drivers significantly more than younger drivers. While performing divided attention tasks, the accuracy of the older drivers was 66.3 percent and that of the younger drivers was 96.3 percent. Although this study did not find a clear impact of cellular phone use on the driving behavior of younger drivers, their divided-attention task reaction times and accuracy were better under no-call than calling conditions. This study indicates that the use of hands-free cellular phones could significantly affect the safety of driving among the older and present risks, although lesser, for younger drivers.

  12. 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.

  13. 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...

  14. 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…

  15. 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)

  16. 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...

  17. 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.

  18. 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.

  19. 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.

  20. Exploring performance and power properties of modern multicore chips via simple machine models

    OpenAIRE

    Hager, Georg; Treibig, Jan; Habich, Johannes; Wellein, Gerhard

    2012-01-01

    Modern multicore chips show complex behavior with respect to performance and power. Starting with the Intel Sandy Bridge processor, it has become possible to directly measure the power dissipation of a CPU chip and correlate this data with the performance properties of the running code. Going beyond a simple bottleneck analysis, we employ the recently published Execution-Cache-Memory (ECM) model to describe the single- and multi-core performance of streaming kernels. The model refines the wel...

  1. 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.

  2. 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.

  3. The effects of bedrest on crew performance during simulated shuttle reentry. Volume 2: Control task performance

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jex, H. R.; Peters, R. A.; Dimarco, R. J.; Allen, R. W.

    1974-01-01

    A simplified space shuttle reentry simulation performed on the NASA Ames Research Center Centrifuge is described. Anticipating potentially deleterious effects of physiological deconditioning from orbital living (simulated here by 10 days of enforced bedrest) upon a shuttle pilot's ability to manually control his aircraft (should that be necessary in an emergency) a comprehensive battery of measurements was made roughly every 1/2 minute on eight military pilot subjects, over two 20-minute reentry Gz vs. time profiles, one peaking at 2 Gz and the other at 3 Gz. Alternate runs were made without and with g-suits to test the help or interference offered by such protective devices to manual control performance. A very demanding two-axis control task was employed, with a subcritical instability in the pitch axis to force a high attentional demand and a severe loss-of-control penalty. The results show that pilots experienced in high Gz flying can easily handle the shuttle manual control task during 2 Gz or 3 Gz reentry profiles, provided the degree of physiological deconditioning is no more than induced by these 10 days of enforced bedrest.

  4. 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)

  5. 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…

  6. 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…

  7. 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

  8. 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.

  9. Decision criterion dynamics in animals performing an auditory detection task.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Robert W Mill

    Full Text Available Classical signal detection theory attributes bias in perceptual decisions to a threshold criterion, against which sensory excitation is compared. The optimal criterion setting depends on the signal level, which may vary over time, and about which the subject is naïve. Consequently, the subject must optimise its threshold by responding appropriately to feedback. Here a series of experiments was conducted, and a computational model applied, to determine how the decision bias of the ferret in an auditory signal detection task tracks changes in the stimulus level. The time scales of criterion dynamics were investigated by means of a yes-no signal-in-noise detection task, in which trials were grouped into blocks that alternately contained easy- and hard-to-detect signals. The responses of the ferrets implied both long- and short-term criterion dynamics. The animals exhibited a bias in favour of responding "yes" during blocks of harder trials, and vice versa. Moreover, the outcome of each single trial had a strong influence on the decision at the next trial. We demonstrate that the single-trial and block-level changes in bias are a manifestation of the same criterion update policy by fitting a model, in which the criterion is shifted by fixed amounts according to the outcome of the previous trial and decays strongly towards a resting value. The apparent block-level stabilisation of bias arises as the probabilities of outcomes and shifts on single trials mutually interact to establish equilibrium. To gain an intuition into how stable criterion distributions arise from specific parameter sets we develop a Markov model which accounts for the dynamic effects of criterion shifts. Our approach provides a framework for investigating the dynamics of decisions at different timescales in other species (e.g., humans and in other psychological domains (e.g., vision, memory.

  10. 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

  11. 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.

  12. Astronaut James S. Voss Performs Tasks in the Destiny Laboratory

    Science.gov (United States)

    2001-01-01

    Astronaut James S. Voss, Expedition Two flight engineer, works with a series of cables on the EXPRESS Rack in the United State's Destiny laboratory on the International Space Station (ISS). The EXPRESS Rack is a standardized payload rack system that transports, stores, and supports experiments aboard the ISS. EXPRESS stands for EXpedite the PRocessing of Experiments to the Space Station, reflecting the fact that this system was developed specifically to maximize the Station's research capabilities. The EXPRESS Rack system supports science payloads in several disciplines, including biology, chemistry, physics, ecology, and medicine. With the EXPRESS Rack, getting experiments to space has never been easier or more affordable. With its standardized hardware interfaces and streamlined approach, the EXPRESS Rack enables quick, simple integration of multiple payloads aboard the ISS. The system is comprised of elements that remain on the ISS, as well as elements that travel back and forth between the ISS and Earth via the Space Shuttle.

  13. 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)

  14. 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.

  15. 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

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

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    de Dreu, C.K.W.; Weingart, L.R.

    2003-01-01

    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, resultsrevealed strong and negative correlations between relationship conflict, team performance, and

  17. 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.

  18. 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.

  19. Goal Setting and Task Performance: 1969-1980

    Science.gov (United States)

    1980-06-01

    self - esteem showed greater performance improvement than individuals with low self - esteem ...There was no self - esteem effect when instrumentality was high. When self - esteem was low , typists who perceived high goal instrumentality showed greater...performance improvement than M. 49 those with low goal instrumentality; when self - esteem was high, there was no instrumentality effect.

  20. 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.

  1. Experience Playing a Musical Instrument and Overnight Sleep Enhance Performance on a Sequential Typing Task.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tucker, Matthew A; Nguyen, Nam; Stickgold, Robert

    2016-01-01

    The smooth, coordinated fine motor movements required to play a musical instrument are not only highly valued in our society; they also predict academic success in areas that generalize beyond the motor domain, including reading and math readiness, and verbal abilities. Interestingly, motor skills that overlap with those required to play a musical instrument (e.g., sequential finger tapping) markedly improve (get faster) over a night of sleep, but not after a day spent awake. Here we studied whether individuals who play musical instruments that require fine finger motor skill are better able to learn and consolidate a simple motor skill task compared to those who do not play an instrument, and whether sleep-specific motor skill benefits interact with those imparted by musical experience. We used the motor sequence task (MST), which taps into a core skill learned and used by musicians, namely, the repetition of learned sequences of key presses. Not surprisingly, we found that musicians were faster than non-musicians throughout the learning session, typing more correct sequences per 30-sec trial. In the 12hrs that followed learning we found that sleep and musical experience both led to greater improvement in performance. Surprisingly, musicians retested after a day of wake performed slightly better than non-musicians who had slept between training and retest, suggesting that musicians have the capacity to consolidate a motor skill across waking hours, while non-musicians appear to lack this capacity. These findings suggest that the musically trained brain is optimized for motor skill consolidation across both wake and sleep, and that sleep may simply promote a more effective use of this machinery. In sum, there may be something special about musicians, perhaps a neurophysiological advantage, that leads to both the expected-greater motor speed at learning-and the surprising-greater motor skill improvement over time.

  2. Experience Playing a Musical Instrument and Overnight Sleep Enhance Performance on a Sequential Typing Task.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Matthew A Tucker

    Full Text Available The smooth, coordinated fine motor movements required to play a musical instrument are not only highly valued in our society; they also predict academic success in areas that generalize beyond the motor domain, including reading and math readiness, and verbal abilities. Interestingly, motor skills that overlap with those required to play a musical instrument (e.g., sequential finger tapping markedly improve (get faster over a night of sleep, but not after a day spent awake. Here we studied whether individuals who play musical instruments that require fine finger motor skill are better able to learn and consolidate a simple motor skill task compared to those who do not play an instrument, and whether sleep-specific motor skill benefits interact with those imparted by musical experience. We used the motor sequence task (MST, which taps into a core skill learned and used by musicians, namely, the repetition of learned sequences of key presses. Not surprisingly, we found that musicians were faster than non-musicians throughout the learning session, typing more correct sequences per 30-sec trial. In the 12hrs that followed learning we found that sleep and musical experience both led to greater improvement in performance. Surprisingly, musicians retested after a day of wake performed slightly better than non-musicians who had slept between training and retest, suggesting that musicians have the capacity to consolidate a motor skill across waking hours, while non-musicians appear to lack this capacity. These findings suggest that the musically trained brain is optimized for motor skill consolidation across both wake and sleep, and that sleep may simply promote a more effective use of this machinery. In sum, there may be something special about musicians, perhaps a neurophysiological advantage, that leads to both the expected-greater motor speed at learning-and the surprising-greater motor skill improvement over time.

  3. Human footprint variation while performing load bearing tasks.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Cara M Wall-Scheffler

    Full Text Available Human footprint fossils have provided essential evidence about the evolution of human bipedalism as well as the social dynamics of the footprint makers, including estimates of speed, sex and group composition. Generally such estimates are made by comparing footprint evidence with modern controls; however, previous studies have not accounted for the variation in footprint dimensions coming from load bearing activities. It is likely that a portion of the hominins who created these fossil footprints were carrying a significant load, such as offspring or foraging loads, which caused variation in the footprint which could extend to variation in any estimations concerning the footprint's maker. To identify significant variation in footprints due to load-bearing tasks, we had participants (N = 30, 15 males and 15 females walk at a series of speeds carrying a 20kg pack on their back, side and front. Paint was applied to the bare feet of each participant to create footprints that were compared in terms of foot length, foot width and foot area. Female foot length and width increased during multiple loaded conditions. An appreciation of footprint variability associated with carrying loads adds an additional layer to our understanding of the behavior and morphology of extinct hominin populations.

  4. 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

  5. Uncovering the relationship between transformational leaders and followers' task performance.

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Breevaart, K.; Bakker, A. B.; Demerouti, E.; Sleebos, D. M.; Maduro, V.

    2015-01-01

    The purpose of the present study was to unravel the mechanisms underlying the relationship between transformational leadership, follower work engagement, and follower job performance and to investigate a possible boundary condition of transformational leadership. We used structural equation modeling

  6. Computational Modeling of Human Multiple-Task Performance

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Kieras, David E; Meyer, David

    2005-01-01

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

  7. Evaluating the performance of simple estimators for probit models with two dummy endogenous regressors

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Holm, Anders; Nielsen, Jacob Arendt

    2013-01-01

    This study considers the small sample performance of approximate but simple two-stage estimators for probit models with two endogenous binary covariates. Monte Carlo simulations showthat all the considered estimators, including the simulated maximum-likelihood (SML) estimation, of the trivariate ...

  8. 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.

  9. 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.

  10. Modeling Operator Performance in Low Task Load Supervisory Domains

    Science.gov (United States)

    2011-06-01

    important to model the best and 65 worst performers separately. It is easy to see that the best performers were better multitaskers and more directed...the expected population this research will influence is expected to contain men and women between the ages of 18 and 50 with an interest in using...for your patience and great sense of humor. I could not ask for a better thesis reader. Thank you, Amy D’Agostino, for taking the time to read my

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    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.

  13. The Deese-Roediger-McDermott (DRM) Task: A Simple Cognitive Paradigm to Investigate False Memories in the Laboratory.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pardilla-Delgado, Enmanuelle; Payne, Jessica D

    2017-01-31

    The Deese, Roediger and McDermott (DRM) task is a false memory paradigm in which subjects are presented with lists of semantically related words (e.g., nurse, hospital, etc.) at encoding. After a delay, subjects are asked to recall or recognize these words. In the recognition memory version of the task, subjects are asked whether they remember previously presented words, as well as related (but never presented) critical lure words ('doctor'). Typically, the critical word is recognized with high probability and confidence. This false memory effect has been robustly demonstrated across short (e.g., immediate, 20 min) and long (e.g., 1, 7, 60 d) delays between encoding and memory testing. A strength of using this task to study false memory is its simplicity and short duration. If encoding and retrieval components of the task occur in the same session, the entire task can take as little as 2 - 30 min. However, although the DRM task is widely considered a 'false memory' paradigm, some researchers consider DRM illusions to be based on the activation of semantic memory networks in the brain, and argue that such semantic gist-based false memory errors may actually be useful in some scenarios (e.g., remembering the forest for the trees; remembering that a word list was about "doctors", even though the actual word "doctor" was never presented for study). Remembering the gist of experience (instead of or along with individual details) is arguably an adaptive process and this task has provided a great deal of knowledge about the constructive, adaptive nature of memory. Therefore, researchers should use caution when discussing the overall reach and implications of their experiments when using this task to study 'false memory', as DRM memory errors may not adequately reflect false memories in the real world, such as false memory in eyewitness testimony, or false memories of sexual abuse.

  14. 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.

  15. Impulsivity modulates performance under response uncertainty in a reaching task.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tzagarakis, C; Pellizzer, G; Rogers, R D

    2013-03-01

    We sought to explore the interaction of the impulsivity trait with response uncertainty. To this end, we used a reaching task (Pellizzer and Hedges in Exp Brain Res 150:276-289, 2003) where a motor response direction was cued at different levels of uncertainty (1 cue, i.e., no uncertainty, 2 cues or 3 cues). Data from 95 healthy adults (54 F, 41 M) were analysed. Impulsivity was measured using the Barratt Impulsiveness Scale version 11 (BIS-11). Behavioral variables recorded were reaction time (RT), errors of commission (referred to as 'early errors') and errors of precision. Data analysis employed generalised linear mixed models and generalised additive mixed models. For the early errors, there was an interaction of impulsivity with uncertainty and gender, with increased errors for high impulsivity in the one-cue condition for women and the three-cue condition for men. There was no effect of impulsivity on precision errors or RT. However, the analysis of the effect of RT and impulsivity on precision errors showed a different pattern for high versus low impulsives in the high uncertainty (3 cue) condition. In addition, there was a significant early error speed-accuracy trade-off for women, primarily in low uncertainty and a 'reverse' speed-accuracy trade-off for men in high uncertainty. These results extend those of past studies of impulsivity which help define it as a behavioural trait that modulates speed versus accuracy response styles depending on environmental constraints and highlight once more the importance of gender in the interplay of personality and behaviour.

  16. 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

  17. The developmental dynamics of task-avoidant behavior and math performance in kindergarten and elementary school

    OpenAIRE

    Hirvonen, Riikka; Tolvanen, Asko; Aunola, Kaisa; Nurmi, Jari-Erik

    2012-01-01

    Besides cognitive factors, children's learning at school may be influenced by more dynamic phenomena, such as motivation and achievement-related task-avoidant behavior. The present study examined the developmental dynamics of task-avoidant behavior and math performance from kindergarten to Grade 4. A total of 225 children were tested for their arithmetic skills in kindergarten and in Grades 1, 2, and 4 of elementary school. Children's task-avoidant behavior in learning situations was rated by...

  18. 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

  19. 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.

  20. Numerical and Experimental Study on Mixing Performances of Simple and Vortex Micro T-Mixers

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mubashshir Ahmad Ansari

    2018-04-01

    Full Text Available Vortex flow increases the interface area of fluid streams by stretching along with providing continuous stirring action to the fluids in micromixers. In this study, experimental and numerical analyses on a design of micromixer that creates vortex flow were carried out, and the mixing performance was compared with a simple micro T-mixer. In the vortex micro T-mixer, the height of the inlet channels is half of the height of the main mixing channel. The inlet channel connects to the main mixing channel (micromixer at the one end at an offset position in a fashion that creates vortex flow. In the simple micro T-mixer, the height of the inlet channels is equal to the height of the channel after connection (main mixing channel. Mixing of fluids and flow field have been analyzed for Reynolds numbers in a range from 1–80. The study has been further extended to planar serpentine microchannels, which were combined with a simple and a vortex T-junction, to evaluate and verify their mixing performances. The mixing performance of the vortex T-mixer is higher than the simple T-mixer and significantly increases with the Reynolds number. The design is promising for efficiently increasing mixing simply at the T-junction and can be applied to all micromixers.

  1. 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.

  2. 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.

  3. 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...

  4. Sensorimotor Adaptability Training Improves Motor and Dual-Task Performance

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bloomberg, J.J.; Peters, B.T.; Mulavara, A.P.; Brady, R.; Batson, C.; Cohen, H.S.

    2009-01-01

    The overall objective of our project is to develop a sensorimotor adaptability (SA) training program designed to facilitate recovery of functional capabilities when astronauts transition to different gravitational environments. The goal of our current study was to determine if SA training using variation in visual flow and support surface motion produces improved performance in a novel sensory environment and demonstrate the retention characteristics of SA training.

  5. 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.

  6. 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.

  7. 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.

  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 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.

  10. 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)

  11. 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.

  12. Does Listening to Slow Tempo Classical Music During Independent Writing Affect Children's On-Task Performance?

    Science.gov (United States)

    McKnight, Rosemary

    This project explored the effects of slow tempo classical music on children's on-task performance during independent writing. The project sample consisted of 24 students from a first grade classroom in the New York City Public School System. The students' on-task behavior was observed with and without use of slow tempo classical music playing, and…

  13. Human Error Probabilites (HEPs) for generic tasks and Performance Shaping Factors (PSFs) selected for railway operations

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Thommesen, Jacob; Andersen, Henning Boje

    This report describes an HRA (Human Reliability Assessment) of six generic tasks and four Perfor-mance Shaping Factors (PSFs) targeted at railway operations commissioned by Banedanmark. The selection and characterization of generic tasks and PSFs are elaborated by DTU Management in close...

  14. Inflectional Morphology and Dyslexia: Italian Children's Performance in a Nonword Pluralization Task

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vender, Maria; Mantione, Federica; Savazzi, Silvia; Delfitto, Denis; Melloni, Chiara

    2017-01-01

    In this study, we present the results of an original experimental protocol designed to assess the performance in a pluralization task of 52 Italian children divided into two groups: 24 children with developmental dyslexia (mean age 10.0 years old) and 28 typically developing children (mean age 9.11 years old). Our task, inspired by Berko's Wug…

  15. 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)

  16. 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.

  17. 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

  18. Effects of four types of non-obtrusive feedback on computer behaviour, task performance and comfort

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Korte, E.M.; Huijsmans, M.A.; de Jong, A.M.; van de Ven, J.G.M.; Ruijsendaal, M.

    2012-01-01

    This study investigated the effects of non-obtrusive feedback on continuous lifted hand/finger behaviour, task performance and comfort. In an experiment with 24 participants the effects of two visual and two tactile feedback signals were compared to a no-feedback condition in a computer task.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cassidy, Gianna; MacDonald, Raymond A. R.

    2007-01-01

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

  20. 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.

  1. 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

  2. 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.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mehta, Ravi; Zhu, Rui Juliet

    2009-02-27

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

  4. 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...

  5. 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.

  6. 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...

  7. Path Analysis Examining Self-Efficacy and Decision-Making Performance on a Simulated Baseball Task

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hepler, Teri J.; Feltz, Deborah L.

    2012-01-01

    The purpose of this study was to examine the relationship between decision-making self-efficacy and decision-making performance in sport. Undergraduate students (N = 78) performed 10 trials of a decision-making task in baseball. Self-efficacy was measured before performing each trial. Decision-making performance was assessed by decision speed and…

  8. 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.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2010-09-01

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

  10. The Relation between Past Flows and Future Performance: Simple Investment Strategies in the Mutual Fund Sector

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Martin Rohleder

    2015-02-01

    Full Text Available In the mutual fund literature, it is an established fact that investors “chase past performance”. However, the opposite impact of flows on performance is widely discussed. Mainly, liquidity costs are held responsible for short-term erosion of performance, while high inflows enhance performance over longer horizons. I investigate this relation for various groups of equity, bond, and money market funds and find significant outperformance in high inflow funds over several months, especially for specific bond fund groups. In addition, I test whether this information can be exploited using simple investment strategies but find that the abnormal returns are too low to offset associated costs.

  11. 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

  12. Formal Derivation of Lotka-Volterra-Haken Amplitude Equations of Task-Related Brain Activity in Multiple, Consecutively Performed Tasks

    Science.gov (United States)

    Frank, T. D.

    The Lotka-Volterra-Haken equations have been frequently used in ecology and pattern formation. Recently, the equations have been proposed by several research groups as amplitude equations for task-related patterns of brain activity. In this theoretical study, the focus is on the circular causality aspect of pattern formation systems as formulated within the framework of synergetics. Accordingly, the stable modes of a pattern formation system inhibit the unstable modes, whereas the unstable modes excite the stable modes. Using this circular causality principle it is shown that under certain conditions the Lotka-Volterra-Haken amplitude equations can be derived from a general model of brain activity akin to the Wilson-Cowan model. The model captures the amplitude dynamics for brain activity patterns in experiments involving several consecutively performed multiple-choice tasks. This is explicitly demonstrated for two-choice tasks involving grasping and walking. A comment on the relevance of the theoretical framework for clinical psychology and schizophrenia is given as well.

  13. 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)

  14. 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.

  15. 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

  16. 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.

  17. 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.

  18. 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.

  19. Hippocampal Negative Event-Related Potential Recorded in Humans During a Simple Sensorimotor Task Occurs Independently of Motor Execution

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Roman, R.; Brázdil, M.; Chládek, Jan; Rektor, I.; Jurák, Pavel; Světlák, M.; Damborská, A.; Shaw, D. J.; Kukleta, M.

    2013-01-01

    Roč. 23, č. 12 (2013), s. 1337-1344 ISSN 1050-9631 R&D Projects: GA MŠk ED0017/01/01; GA ČR GAP103/11/0933 Institutional support: RVO:68081731 Keywords : intracranial recordings * auditory task * hippocampus * ERP latency * motor response Subject RIV: BD - Theory of Information Impact factor: 4.302, year: 2013

  20. 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.

  1. 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.

  2. Balance Performance Is Task Specific in Older Adults

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ayelet Dunsky

    2017-01-01

    Full Text Available Balance ability among the elderly is a key component in the activities of daily living and is divided into two types: static and dynamic. For clinicians who wish to assess the risk of falling among their elderly patients, it is unclear if more than one type of balance test can be used to measure their balance impairment. In this study, we examined the association between static balance measures and two dynamic balance field tests. One hundred and twelve community-dwelling older adults (mean age 74.6 participated in the study. They underwent the Tetrax static postural assessment and then performed the Timed Up and Go (TUG and the Functional Reach (FR Test as dynamic balance tests. In general, low-moderate correlations were found between the two types of balance tests. For women, age and static balance parameters explained 28.1–40.4% of the variance of TUG scores and 14.6–24% of the variance of FR scores. For men, age and static balance parameters explained 9.5–31.2% of the variance of TUG scores and 23.9–41.7% of the variance of FR scores. Based on our findings, it is suggested that a combination of both static and dynamic tests be used for assessing postural balance ability.

  3. 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.

  4. 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

  5. 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.

  6. 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.

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

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Doane, Stephanie

    2004-01-01

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

  8. Integrated Technical Information for the Air Logistics Center: Enhancing Maintenance Technician Task Performance

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Mitta, Deborah

    1998-01-01

    This technical paper documents the final results of an analysis of the task environment under which depot maintenance technicians perform their jobs--specifically, programmed depot maintenance (PDM) for F-15 aircraft...

  9. 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.

  10. Influence of stereoscopic vision on task performance with an operating microscope

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Nibourg, Lisanne M.; Wanders, Wouter; Cornelissen, Frans W.; Koopmans, Steven A.

    PURPOSE: To determine the extent to which stereoscopic depth perception influences the performance of tasks executed under an operating microscope. SETTING: Laboratory of Experimental Ophthalmology, University Medical Center Groningen, the Netherlands. DESIGN: Experimental study. METHODS: Medical

  11. 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....

  12. Investigating Conversational Dynamics: Interactive Alignment, Interpersonal Synergy, and Collective Task Performance

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fusaroli, Riccardo; Tylén, Kristian

    2016-01-01

    This study investigates interpersonal processes underlying dialog by comparing two approaches, "interactive alignment" and "interpersonal synergy", and assesses how they predict collective performance in a joint task. While the interactive alignment approach highlights imitative patterns between interlocutors, the synergy…

  13. 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...

  14. An Investigation of Factors Affecting Multi-Task Performance in an Immersive Environment

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Branscome, Teresa A; Grynovicki, Jock O

    2007-01-01

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

  15. 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.

  16. 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…

  17. 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.

  18. 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...

  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. 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

  1. 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...

  2. The relationship between amygdala activation and passive exposure time to an aversive cue during a continuous performance task.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Irina A Strigo

    2010-11-01

    Full Text Available The allocation of attention modulates negative emotional processing in the amygdala. However, the role of passive exposure time to emotional signals in the modulation of amygdala activity during active task performance has not been examined. In two functional Magnetic Resonance Imaging (fMRI experiments conducted in two different groups of healthy human subjects, we examined activation in the amygdala due to cued anticipation of painful stimuli while subjects performed a simple continuous performance task (CPT with either a fixed or a parametrically varied trial duration. In the first experiment (N = 16, engagement in the CPT during a task with fixed trial duration produced the expected attenuation of amygdala activation, but close analysis suggested that the attenuation occurred during the period of active engagement in CPT, and that amygdala activity increased proportionately during the remainder of each trial, when subjects were passively exposed to the pain cue. In the second experiment (N = 12, the duration of each trial was parametrically varied, and we found that amygdala activation was linearly related to the time of passive exposure to the anticipatory cue. We suggest that amygdala activation during negative anticipatory processing depends directly on the passive exposure time to the negative cue.

  3. Performance on naturalistic virtual reality tasks depends on global cognitive functioning as assessed via traditional neurocognitive tests.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Oliveira, Jorge; Gamito, Pedro; Alghazzawi, Daniyal M; Fardoun, Habib M; Rosa, Pedro J; Sousa, Tatiana; Picareli, Luís Felipe; Morais, Diogo; Lopes, Paulo

    2017-08-14

    This investigation sought to understand whether performance in naturalistic virtual reality tasks for cognitive assessment relates to the cognitive domains that are supposed to be measured. The Shoe Closet Test (SCT) was developed based on a simple visual search task involving attention skills, in which participants have to match each pair of shoes with the colors of the compartments in a virtual shoe closet. The interaction within the virtual environment was made using the Microsoft Kinect. The measures consisted of concurrent paper-and-pencil neurocognitive tests for global cognitive functioning, executive functions, attention, psychomotor ability, and the outcomes of the SCT. The results showed that the SCT correlated with global cognitive performance as measured with the Montreal Cognitive Assessment (MoCA). The SCT explained one third of the total variance of this test and revealed good sensitivity and specificity in discriminating scores below one standard deviation in this screening tool. These findings suggest that performance of such functional tasks involves a broad range of cognitive processes that are associated with global cognitive functioning and that may be difficult to isolate through paper-and-pencil neurocognitive tests.

  4. 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.

  5. 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

  6. Simple, cost effective & result oriented framework for supplier performance measurement in sports goods manufacturing industry

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    2011-09-01

    Full Text Available The emergences of global markets have increased competition worldwide. For the Sports Goods Manufacturing Industry which is considered to be an intensive supplier base industry with limited resources to sustain in what is already a very competitive market there is a need for the entire supply chain viz. raw material and machinery suppliers and manufacturers to measure their supplier's performance to reduce business risks and revenue losses. How to design & execute a simple, cost effective & result oriented Framework for Supplier Performance Measurement for sports goods manufacturing small - medium enterprises is the main aim of this research paper.

  7. 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.

  8. 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.

  9. A simple, high performance Thomson scattering diagnostic for high temperature plasma research

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Hartog, D.J.D.; Cekic, M.

    1994-02-01

    This Thomson scattering diagnostic is used to measure the electron temperature and density of the plasma in the MST reversed-field pinch, a magnetic confinement fusion research device. This diagnostic system is unique for its type in that it combines high performance with simple design and low cost components. In the design of this instrument, careful attention was given to the suppression of stray laser line light with simple and effective beam dumps, viewing dumps, aperatures, and a holographic edge filter. This allows the use of a single grating monochromator for dispersion of the Thomson scattered spectrum onto the microchannel plate detector. Alignment and calibration procedures for the laser beam delivery system, the scattered light collection system, and the spectrometer and detector are described. A sample Thomson scattered spectrum illustrates typical data

  10. 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.

  11. 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.

  12. 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

  13. 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.

  14. 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

  15. 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.

  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. 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.

  18. 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.

  19. 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.

  20. Effects of traditional grammar teaching on standard six learners’ performance in understanding and using simple present tense, simple past tense, pronouns, and articles

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Thulasimani Munohsamy

    2014-03-01

    Full Text Available This study sought to investigate whether there is any effect of the traditional grammar teaching on Standard Six learners’ performance in understanding and using simple present tense, simple past tense, pronouns and articles in writing. The sample for the study consisted of 40 Standard Six students of SK Tansau, Putatan, Kota Kinabalu, Sabah who was divided equally into two groups which were the treatment group and the control groups. Tests of understanding and of using the simple present tense, simple past tense, pronouns and articles were used as the instruments of the study. The data was collected through the administration of the pre-test and post-test. To analyze the collected data, the SPSS (Statistical Packages for Social Sciences version 11.5 was used. T-test was used to see if there was a significant difference in the mean of gain score. The Pearson Correlation was used on both tests between treatment group and control group to establish the relationship between scores on understanding and scores on using the grammatical features investigated. The study found that there was no significant difference in the mean of gain score in simple present tense, simple past tense and pronouns of the understanding test as well as writing test between the treatment and control groups. The results also indicated that there was no correlation between scores on test of understanding and test of using simple present tense, simple past tense, pronouns and articles on writing in the treatment group. There have been research studies in the past that lend clear cut support to the teaching of grammar as a mean of improving writing, however the results of this research clearly show that the implementation of Traditional Grammar Teaching has no effects on the students’ writing.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2012-04-01

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

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2017-10-01

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

  3. "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.

  4. Adult age differences in predicting memory performance: the effects of normative information and task experience.

    Science.gov (United States)

    McDonald-Miszczak, L; Hunter, M A; Hultsch, D F

    1994-03-01

    Two experiments addressed the effects of task information and experience on younger and older adults' ability to predict their memory for words. The first study examined the effects of normative task information on subjects' predictions for 30-word lists across three trials. The second study looked at the effects of making predictions and recalling either an easy (15) or a difficult (45) word list prior to making predictions and recalling a moderately difficult (30) word list. The results from both studies showed that task information and experience affected subjects' predictions and that elderly adults predicted their performance more accurately than younger adults.

  5. Easy and difficult performance-approach goals : Their moderating effect on the link between task interest and performance attainment

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Blaga, Monica; Van Yperen, N.W.

    2008-01-01

    The purpose of this study was to demonstrate that the positive link between task interest and performance attainment can he negatively affected by the pursuit of difficult performance-approach goals. This was tested in a sample of 60 undergraduate Students at a Dutch university, In line with

  6. Location versus task relevance: The impact of differing internal focus of attention instructions on motor performance.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pelleck, Valerie; Passmore, Steven R

    2017-05-01

    Impaired performance while executing a motor task is attributed to a disruption of normal automatic processes when an internal focus of attention is used. What remains unclear is whether the specificity of internally focused task instructions may impact task performance. The present study assessed the implications of changing the attentional focus of novice and skilled golfers by measuring behavioural, neurophysiological and kinematic changes during a golf putting task. Over six blocks of ten putting trials each, attention was directed either externally (towards the target) or internally in one of two ways: 1) proximal (keeping the elbows extended and the hands gripping the putter); or 2) distal (keeping the weight evenly distributed between both legs) to the critical elements of the task. Results provided evidence that when novice participants use an internal focus of attention more closely associated with task performance that their: 1) execution; 2) accuracy; 3) variability of surface electromyography (sEMG) activity; and 4) kinematics of the putter movement are all adversely affected. Skilled golfers are much more resilient to changes in attentional focus, while all participants interpret a distal internal focus of attention similar to an external focus. All participants produced decreased activity in the muscle (tibialis anterior) associated with the distal (less task relevant) focus of attention even when the "internal" focus was on the lower extremity. Our results provide evidence that the skill level of the participant and the distance of the internal focus of attention from the key elements of a motor skill directly impact the execution, muscle activity, and movement kinematics associated with skilled motor task performance. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  7. 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.

  8. 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.

  9. 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.

  10. 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.

  11. 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

  12. 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

  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. 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.

  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. 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. Determination of Urine Albumin by New Simple High-Performance Liquid Chromatography Method.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Klapkova, Eva; Fortova, Magdalena; Prusa, Richard; Moravcova, Libuse; Kotaska, Karel

    2016-11-01

    A simple high-performance liquid chromatography (HPLC) method was developed for the determination of albumin in patients' urine samples without coeluting proteins and was compared with the immunoturbidimetric determination of albumin. Urine albumin is important biomarker in diabetic patients, but part of it is immuno-nonreactive. Albumin was determined by high-performance liquid chromatography (HPLC), UV detection at 280 nm, Zorbax 300SB-C3 column. Immunoturbidimetric analysis was performed using commercial kit on automatic biochemistry analyzer COBAS INTEGRA ® 400, Roche Diagnostics GmbH, Manheim, Germany. The HLPC method was fully validated. No significant interference with other proteins (transferrin, α-1-acid glycoprotein, α-1-antichymotrypsin, antitrypsin, hemopexin) was found. The results from 301 urine samples were compared with immunochemical determination. We found a statistically significant difference between these methods (P = 0.0001, Mann-Whitney test). New simple HPLC method was developed for the determination of urine albumin without coeluting proteins. Our data indicate that the HPLC method is highly specific and more sensitive than immunoturbidimetry. © 2016 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  18. O desempenho da dupla tarefa na Doença de Parkinson The dual task performance in Parkinson's disease

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    NB Teixeira

    2007-04-01

    Full Text Available INTRODUÇÃO: A capacidade de o indivíduo realizar duas tarefas ao mesmo tempo é um pré-requisito para uma vida normal. Em circunstâncias normais, a realização concomitante de tarefas motoras e cognitivas é comum. OBJETIVO: O objetivo deste estudo foi analisar o desempenho de pacientes com Doença de Parkinson na realização de dupla tarefa motora-cognitiva. MÉTODO: Dois grupos foram estudados. Um grupo foi composto por 10 indivíduos saudáveis e o outro por 10 pacientes com diagnóstico de Doença de Parkinson, ambos com idades entre 47 e 75 anos, pareados em relação ao gênero e idade. Foi solicitado que vestissem uma camisa de botões o mais rapidamente possível de forma isolada (tarefa simples e enquanto verbalizavam nomes próprios femininos (dupla tarefa, em ordem aleatória. Cada tarefa foi repetida três vezes. O tempo de movimento e os erros cometidos foram analisados. RESULTADOS: Os pacientes levaram mais tempo para completar ambas as tarefas (p= 0,006 quando comparados aos indivíduos saudáveis. Ambos os grupos cometeram mais erros na dupla tarefa (p= 0,03. Houve uma redução no tempo de movimento com a repetição da tarefa (p= 0,039. CONCLUSÕES: Estes resultados sugerem que indivíduos com Doença de Parkinson apresentam um prejuízo no desempenho motor em relação ao grupo controle, no entanto, o custo para o desempenho desta tarefa independe da interferência motora-cogntiva e a possibilidade de melhora do desempenho com a prática é real.INTRODUCTION: A capacity to perform two tasks at the same time is a prerequisite for an individual to have a normal life. Under normal circumstances, performing motor and cognitive tasks concomitantly is common. OBJECTIVE: The aim of this study was investigate the motor-cognitive dual task performance in Parkinson's disease patients. METHOD: Two groups were studied. One group was composed by 10 healthy individuals and the other by 10 patients with a diagnosis of Parkinson

  19. Simple routine tests to improve the performance of the DPRSN TLD-based individual monitoring system

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Alves, J.G.; Batel, V.I.; Silva, P.B.; Roda, A.; Santos, L.

    2002-01-01

    This paper presents some of the results of a simple quality control program developed and implemented at the thermoluminescence sector of the IMS. The European Union (EU) Directive 96/29/EURATOM has not yet been transposed to national legislation and Portuguese law concerning the monitoring of radiation workers still establishes an annual dose limit of 50 mSv. However, new legislation has recently been published with requirements on the performance of dosimetric services. Some of the results of the tests reported herein will show compliance with the above mentioned requirements

  20. A Simple Analytic Model for Estimating Mars Ascent Vehicle Mass and Performance

    Science.gov (United States)

    Woolley, Ryan C.

    2014-01-01

    The Mars Ascent Vehicle (MAV) is a crucial component in any sample return campaign. In this paper we present a universal model for a two-stage MAV along with the analytic equations and simple parametric relationships necessary to quickly estimate MAV mass and performance. Ascent trajectories can be modeled as two-burn transfers from the surface with appropriate loss estimations for finite burns, steering, and drag. Minimizing lift-off mass is achieved by balancing optimized staging and an optimized path-to-orbit. This model allows designers to quickly find optimized solutions and to see the effects of design choices.

  1. 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.

  2. Performance of children with developmental dyslexia on high and low topological entropy artificial grammar learning task.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Katan, Pesia; Kahta, Shani; Sasson, Ayelet; Schiff, Rachel

    2017-07-01

    Graph complexity as measured by topological entropy has been previously shown to affect performance on artificial grammar learning tasks among typically developing children. The aim of this study was to examine the effect of graph complexity on implicit sequential learning among children with developmental dyslexia. Our goal was to determine whether children's performance depends on the complexity level of the grammar system learned. We conducted two artificial grammar learning experiments that compared performance of children with developmental dyslexia with that of age- and reading level-matched controls. Experiment 1 was a high topological entropy artificial grammar learning task that aimed to establish implicit learning phenomena in children with developmental dyslexia using previously published experimental conditions. Experiment 2 is a lower topological entropy variant of that task. Results indicated that given a high topological entropy grammar system, children with developmental dyslexia who were similar to the reading age-matched control group had substantial difficulty in performing the task as compared to typically developing children, who exhibited intact implicit learning of the grammar. On the other hand, when tested on a lower topological entropy grammar system, all groups performed above chance level, indicating that children with developmental dyslexia were able to identify rules from a given grammar system. The results reinforced the significance of graph complexity when experimenting with artificial grammar learning tasks, particularly with dyslexic participants.

  3. The relationship between event-based prospective memory and ongoing task performance in chimpanzees (Pan troglodytes.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Theodore A Evans

    Full Text Available Prospective memory is remembering to do something at a future time. A growing body of research supports that prospective memory may exist in nonhuman animals, but the methods used to test nonhuman prospective memory differ from those used with humans. The current work tests prospective memory in chimpanzees using a method that closely approximates a typical human paradigm. In these experiments, the prospective memory cue was embedded within an ongoing task. Tokens representing food items could be used in one of two ways: in a matching task with pictures of items (the ongoing task or to request a food item hidden in a different location at the beginning of the trial. Chimpanzees had to disengage from the ongoing task in order to use the appropriate token to obtain a higher preference food item. In Experiment 1, chimpanzees effectively matched tokens to pictures, when appropriate, and disengaged from the ongoing task when the token matched the hidden item. In Experiment 2, performance did not differ when the target item was either hidden or visible. This suggested no effect of cognitive load on either the prospective memory task or the ongoing task, but performance was near ceiling, which may have contributed to this outcome. In Experiment 3, we created a more challenging version of the task. More errors on the matching task occurred before the prospective memory had been carried out, and this difference seemed to be limited to the hidden condition. This finding parallels results from human studies and suggests that working memory load and prospective memory may have a similar relationship in nonhuman primates.

  4. 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

  5. Effects of Attentional Focus and Age on Suprapostural Task Performance and Postural Control

    Science.gov (United States)

    McNevin, Nancy; Weir, Patricia; Quinn, Tiffany

    2013-01-01

    Purpose: Suprapostural task performance (manual tracking) and postural control (sway and frequency) were examined as a function of attentional focus, age, and tracking difficulty. Given the performance benefits often found under external focus conditions, it was hypothesized that external focus instructions would promote superior tracking and…

  6. 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

  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. How to come to military platforms that are capable to perform the anticipated tasks and missions

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Smit, C.S.; Rijn, T.P.J. van

    2010-01-01

    A programme has been performed in the Netherlands to realise a framework to support the armed forces during the procurement of (land based) platforms. The aim is to procure platforms that are capable to perform the anticipated tasks and missions. The support comprises two aspects: formulation of

  9. Student Musicians' Self- and Task-Theories of Musical Performance: The Influence of Primary Genre Affiliation

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hewitt, Allan

    2009-01-01

    One hundred and sixty-five undergraduate music students studying in Scotland completed a 30-statement Q-sort to describe their self- and task-theories of musical performance. Statements reflected the importance of effort, confidence, technical ability, significant others and luck/chance in determining a successful performance. The Q-sorts were…

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    Barnes, Nicole C.; Urbankowski, Daniel

    2014-01-01

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

  11. 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.…

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jiří Mudrák

    2015-03-01

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

  13. 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

  14. Interactive Light Stimulus Generation with High Performance Real-Time Image Processing and Simple Scripting

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    László Szécsi

    2017-12-01

    Full Text Available Light stimulation with precise and complex spatial and temporal modulation is demanded by a series of research fields like visual neuroscience, optogenetics, ophthalmology, and visual psychophysics. We developed a user-friendly and flexible stimulus generating framework (GEARS GPU-based Eye And Retina Stimulation Software, which offers access to GPU computing power, and allows interactive modification of stimulus parameters during experiments. Furthermore, it has built-in support for driving external equipment, as well as for synchronization tasks, via USB ports. The use of GEARS does not require elaborate programming skills. The necessary scripting is visually aided by an intuitive interface, while the details of the underlying software and hardware components remain hidden. Internally, the software is a C++/Python hybrid using OpenGL graphics. Computations are performed on the GPU, and are defined in the GLSL shading language. However, all GPU settings, including the GPU shader programs, are automatically generated by GEARS. This is configured through a method encountered in game programming, which allows high flexibility: stimuli are straightforwardly composed using a broad library of basic components. Stimulus rendering is implemented solely in C++, therefore intermediary libraries for interfacing could be omitted. This enables the program to perform computationally demanding tasks like en-masse random number generation or real-time image processing by local and global operations.

  15. Interactive Light Stimulus Generation with High Performance Real-Time Image Processing and Simple Scripting.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Szécsi, László; Kacsó, Ágota; Zeck, Günther; Hantz, Péter

    2017-01-01

    Light stimulation with precise and complex spatial and temporal modulation is demanded by a series of research fields like visual neuroscience, optogenetics, ophthalmology, and visual psychophysics. We developed a user-friendly and flexible stimulus generating framework (GEARS GPU-based Eye And Retina Stimulation Software), which offers access to GPU computing power, and allows interactive modification of stimulus parameters during experiments. Furthermore, it has built-in support for driving external equipment, as well as for synchronization tasks, via USB ports. The use of GEARS does not require elaborate programming skills. The necessary scripting is visually aided by an intuitive interface, while the details of the underlying software and hardware components remain hidden. Internally, the software is a C++/Python hybrid using OpenGL graphics. Computations are performed on the GPU, and are defined in the GLSL shading language. However, all GPU settings, including the GPU shader programs, are automatically generated by GEARS. This is configured through a method encountered in game programming, which allows high flexibility: stimuli are straightforwardly composed using a broad library of basic components. Stimulus rendering is implemented solely in C++, therefore intermediary libraries for interfacing could be omitted. This enables the program to perform computationally demanding tasks like en-masse random number generation or real-time image processing by local and global operations.

  16. 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.

  17. Use of simple transport equations to estimate waste package performance requirements

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Wood, B.J.

    1982-01-01

    A method of developing waste package performance requirements for specific nuclides is described. The method is based on: Federal regulations concerning permissible concentrations in solution at the point of discharge to the accessible environment; a simple and conservative transport model; baseline and potential worst-case release scenarios. Use of the transport model enables calculation of maximum permissible release rates within a repository in basalt for each of the scenarios. The maximum permissible release rates correspond to performance requirements for the engineered barrier system. The repository was assumed to be constructed in a basalt layer. For the cases considered, including a well drilled into an aquifer 1750 m from the repository center, little significant advantage is obtained from a 1000-yr as opposed to a 100-yr waste package. A 1000-yr waste package is of importance only for nuclides with half-lives much less than 100 yr which travel to the accessible environment in much less than 1000 yr. Such short travel times are extremely unlikely for a mined repository. Among the actinides, the most stringent maximum permissible release rates are for 236 U and 234 U. A simple solubility calculation suggests, however, that these performance requirements can be readily met by the engineered barrier system. Under the reducing conditions likely to occur in a repository located in basalt, uranium would be sufficiently insoluble that no solution could contain more than about 0.01% of the maximum permissible concentration at saturation. The performance requirements derived from the one-dimensional modeling approach are conservative by at least one to two orders of magnitude. More quantitative three-dimensional modeling at specific sites should enable relaxation of the performance criteria derived in this study. 12 references, 8 figures, 8 tables

  18. 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

  19. 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.

  20. 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.

  1. 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.

  2. 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.

  3. 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...

  4. 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

  5. Investigation of Performance Task Studies Applied by Turkish Teachers for the Purpose of Consolidation and Evaluation

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ali GÖÇER

    2014-04-01

    Full Text Available The aim of this study is to provide an overview of the applications of task performance as they are used to determine the status of the development in process and acquire the senior mental, linguistic, and social skills of students in secondary school Turkish lessons. In this study which adapted action research design in qualitative research approach, the data were obtained through interviews and document analysis method. The study was conducted on a study group consisting of 13 Turkish teachers. The data were obtained using the main form of the interview as a means of data collection. Additionally, were collected as examined document that products made by the task performance of students. The data were examined with content analysis method. According to the results of the data, almost all of the teachers in the study group have implemented performance tasks in accordance with the decisions of branch and the curriculum of the course.

  6. 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....

  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. 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.

  9. 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....

  10. 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.

  11. 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.

  12. Development of a simple driving simulator and determination of the reference range of normative performance.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kato, Noriaki; Saeki, Satoru; Okazaki, Tetsuya; Matsunaga, Katsuya; Hachisuka, Kenji

    2018-01-01

    To establish the reference range for assessment items of the 'Simple Driving Simulator' (SiDS) in a normative population and to compare performance of age-matched young adults with a traumatic brain injury (TBI) to this reference data. Normative ranges were calculated from the data of 445 participants in the control group. Three performance ranges were established: 'normal', 'borderline' and 'impaired' defined using standard deviation cutoff values in the control group. The performance of 28 patients with a TBI, aged 18-35 years, was evaluated. The performance score for the TBI group in the 'impaired range' was calculated for each test item and used to make a synthetic judgment regarding the clinical value of the SiDS. In the control group, only 0.6% of the participants exhibited a performance in the impaired range on >2 items, compared to 33.2% for the TBI group. We provide evidence that impaired performance on ≤2 items of the SiDS provides a sensitive criterion of 'driving fitness' in young adults after a TBI.

  13. 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

  14. Fast and Simple Forensic Red Pen Ink Analysis Using Ultra-Performance Liquid Chromatography (UPLC)

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Lee, L.C.; Ying, S.L.; Wan Nur Syazwani Wan Mohamad Fuad; Ab Aziz Ishak; Khairul Osman

    2016-01-01

    Ultra-performance liquid chromatography (UPLC) is more effective than high performance liquid chromatography in terms of analysis speed and sensitivity. This paper presents a feasibility study on forensic red pen inks analysis using UPLC. A total of 12 varieties of red ball point pen inks were purchased from selected stationary shop. For each variety, four different individual pens were sampled to provide intra-variability within a particular variety of pen. The proposed approach is very simple that it only involved limited analysis step and chemicals. A total of 144 chromatograms were obtained from red ink entries extracted with 1.5 mL 80 % (v/v) acetonitrile. Peaks originated from pen inks were determined by comparing the chromatograms of both blank paper and blank solvent against that of ink samples. Subsequently, one-way ANOVA was conducted to discriminate all 66 possible pairs for red pen inks. Results showed that the proposed approach giving discriminating power of 95.45 %. The outcome of the study indicates that UPLC could be a fast and simple approach to red ball point pen inks analysis. (author)

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    Galy, Edith; Mélan, Claudine

    2015-12-01

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

  16. The Effect of Corrective Feedback on Performance in Basic Cognitive Tasks: An Analysis of RT Components

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Carmen Moret-Tatay

    2016-12-01

    Full Text Available The current work examines the effect of trial-by-trial feedback about correct and error responding on performance in two basic cognitive tasks: a classic Stroop task (n = 40 and a color-word matching task ('n' = 30. Standard measures of both RT and accuracy were examined in addition to measures obtained from fitting the ex-Gaussian distributional model to the correct RTs. For both tasks, RTs were faster in blocks of trials with feedback than in blocks without feedback, but this difference was not significant. On the other hand, with respect to the distributional analyses, providing feedback served to significantly reduce the size of the tails of the RT distributions. Such results suggest that, for conditions in which accuracy is fairly high, the effect of corrective feedback might either be to reduce the tendency to double-check before responding or to decrease the amount of attentional lapsing.

  17. Developmental dynamics between mathematical performance, task motivation, and teachers' goals during the transition to primary school.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Aunola, Kaisa; Leskinen, Esko; Nurmi, Jari-Erik

    2006-03-01

    It has been suggested that children's learning motivation and interest in a particular subject play an important role in their school performance, particularly in mathematics. However, few cross-lagged longitudinal studies have been carried out to investigate the prospective relationships between academic achievement and task motivation. Moreover, the role that the classroom context plays in this development is largely unknown. The aim of the study was to investigate the developmental dynamics of maths-related motivation and mathematical performance during children's transition to primary school. The role of teachers' pedagogical goals and classroom characteristics on this development was also investigated. A total of 196 Finnish children were examined four times: (0) in October during their preschool year; (1) in October and (2) April during their first grade of primary school; and (3) in October during their second grade. Children's mathematical performance was tested at each measurement point. Task motivation was examined at measurement points 2, 3, and 4 using the Task-value scale for children. First-grade teachers were interviewed in November about their pedagogical goals and classroom characteristics. The results showed that children's mathematical performance and related task motivation formed a cumulative developmental cycle: a high level of maths performance at the beginning of the first grade increased subsequent task motivation towards mathematics, which further predicted a high level of maths performance at the beginning of the second grade. The level of maths-related task motivation increased in those classrooms where the teachers emphasized motivation or self-concept development as their most important pedagogical goal.

  18. 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.

  19. A Simple Approach for Enhancing the Output Performance of Solar-Pumped Solid-State Lasers

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Dawei Liang

    2009-01-01

    Full Text Available A simple truncated fused silica elliptical cavity is proposed to enhance the output performance of solar-pumped solid-state lasers. The imaging property of the truncated elliptical cavity ensures an enhanced absorption distribution within an Nd:YAG rod. Optimum pumping parameters are found through ZEMAX nonsequential ray-tracing and LASCAD laser cavity analyses. Compared with the output laser performance of a 3D-compound parabolic concentrator-2D-compound parabolic concentrator (3D-CPC-2D-CPC cavity, the truncated cavity provides 11% more multimode and 72.7% more TEM00 laser powers. A laser beam of high beam quality can be produced efficiently. The standard tracking error for multimode laser power is also reduced to only 4.0% by the truncated cavity.

  20. Data from 617 Healthy Participants Performing the Iowa Gambling Task: A “Many Labs” Collaboration

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Helen Steingroever

    2015-06-01

    Full Text Available This data pool (N = 617 comes from 10 independent studies assessing performance of healthy participants (i.e., no known neurological impairments on the Iowa gambling task (IGT—a task measuring decision making under uncertainty in an experimental context. Participants completed a computerized version of the IGT consisting of 95 – 150 trials. The data consist of the choices of each participant on each trial, and the resulting rewards and losses. The data are stored as .rdata, .csv, and .txt files, and can be reused to (1 analyze IGT performance of healthy participants; (2 create a “super control group”; or (3 facilitate model-comparison efforts.

  1. The potential impact of 3D telepresence technology on task performance in emergency trauma care

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Söderholm, Hanna M.; Sonnenwald, Diane H.; Cairns, Bruce

    2007-01-01

    a simulated emergency situation 60 paramedics diagnosed and treated a trauma victim while working alone or in collaboration with a physician via 2D video or a 3D proxy. Analysis of paramedics' task performance shows that the fewest harmful procedures occurred in the 3D proxy condition. Paramedics in the 3D...... proxy condition also reported higher levels of self-efficacy. These results indicate 3D telepresence technology has potential to improve paramedics' performance of complex emergency medical tasks and improve emergency trauma health care when designed appropriately....

  2. 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...

  3. 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

  4. 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...

  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. Attentional fluctuations in preschoolers: Direct and indirect relations with task accuracy, academic readiness, and school performance.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Isbell, Elif; Calkins, Susan D; Swingler, Margaret M; Leerkes, Esther M

    2018-03-01

    Attentional control fluctuates in the presence of internal and external distractors, wandering on and off a given task. The current study investigated individual differences in attentional fluctuations in 250 preschoolers. Attentional fluctuations were assessed via intra-individual variability in response time in a Go/No-Go task. Greater fluctuations in attentional control were linked to lower task accuracy. In addition, greater attentional fluctuations predicted lower performance in a task of cognitive flexibility, the Dimensional Change Card Sort task. Attentional fluctuations were also associated with laboratory measures of academic readiness in preschool, as assessed by the Applied Problems and Letter-Word Identification subscales of the Woodcock-Johnson III Tests of Achievement, which in turn predicted teacher reports of academic performance in first grade. Attentional fluctuations also had indirect associations with emergent math skills in preschool, via cognitive flexibility, as well as indirect associations with first-grade teacher reports of academic performance, via the relations between cognitive flexibility and emergent math skills in preschool. These results suggest that consistency is an important aspect of attentional control during early childhood. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  7. 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.

  8. An investigation on task-technology fit of mobile nursing information systems for nursing performance.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hsiao, Ju-Ling; Chen, Rai-Fu

    2012-05-01

    This study investigates factors affecting the fit between nursing tasks and mobile nursing information systems and the relationships between the task-technology fit of mobile nursing information systems and nurse performance from the perspective of task-technology fit. Survey research recruited nursing staffs as subjects from selected case hospital. A total of 310 questionnaires were sent out, and 219 copies were obtained, indicating a valid response rate of 70.6%. Collected data were analyzed using the structural equation modeling technique. Our study found that dependence tasks have positive effects on information acquisition (γ=0.234, Pinformation identification (γ=0.478, Pinformation acquisition (γ=0.213, Pintroduction of mobile nursing information systems in assisting nursing practices can help facilitate both independent and dependent nursing tasks. Our study discovered that the supporting functions of mobile nursing information systems have positive effects on information integration and interpretation (γ=0.365, Pinformation acquisition (γ=0.253, Pinformation systems have positive effects on information acquisition (γ=0.318, Pinformation integration and interpretation (γ=0.143, Pinformation identification (β=.055, Pinformation acquisition (β=.176, Pinformation integration and interpretation (β=.706, Pinformation systems have positive effects on nursing performance, indicating 83.2% of totally explained variance. As shown, the use of mobile nursing information systems could provide nursing staffs with real-time and accurate information to increase efficiency and effectiveness in patient-care duties, further improving nursing performance.

  9. 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.

  10. 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 ath