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Sample records for task kingfisher study

  1. WAG 2 remedial investigation and site investigation site-specific work plan/health and safety checklist for the ecological assessment task, Kingfisher Study

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Holt, V.L.; Baron, L.A.

    1994-05-01

    This report provides specific details and requirements for the WAG 2 remedial investigation and site investigation Ecological Assessment Task, Kingfisher Study, including information that will contribute to safe completion of the project. The report includes historical background; a site map; project organization; task descriptions and hazard evaluations; controls; and monitoring, personal protective equipment, decontamination, and medical surveillance program requirements. The report also includes descriptions of site personnel and their certifications as well as suspected WAG 2 contaminants and their characteristics. The primary objective of the WAG 2 Kingfisher Study is to assess the feasibility of using kingfishers as biological monitors of contaminants on the Oak Ridge Reservation (ORR). Kingfisher sample collection will be used to determine the levels of contaminants and degree of bioaccumulation within a common piscivorous bird feeding on contaminated fish from streams on the ORR

  2. Multiscale habitat use and selection in cooperatively breeding Micronesian kingfishers

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kesler, D.C.; Haig, S.M.

    2007-01-01

    Information about the interaction between behavior and landscape resources is key to directing conservation management for endangered species. We studied multi-scale occurrence, habitat use, and selection in a cooperatively breeding population of Micronesian kingfishers (Todiramphus cinnamominus) on the island of Pohnpei, Federated States of Micronesia. At the landscape level, point-transect surveys resulted in kingfisher detection frequencies that were higher than those reported in 1994, although they remained 15-40% lower than 1983 indices. Integration of spatially explicit vegetation information with survey results indicated that kingfisher detections were positively associated with the amount of wet forest and grass-urban vegetative cover, and they were negatively associated with agricultural forest, secondary vegetation, and upland forest cover types. We used radiotelemetry and remote sensing to evaluate habitat use by individual kingfishers at the home-range scale. A comparison of habitats in Micronesian kingfisher home ranges with those in randomly placed polygons illustrated that birds used more forested areas than were randomly available in the immediate surrounding area. Further, members of cooperatively breeding groups included more forest in their home ranges than birds in pair-breeding territories, and forested portions of study areas appeared to be saturated with territories. Together, these results suggested that forest habitats were limited for Micronesian kingfishers. Thus, protecting and managing forests is important for the restoration of Micronesian kingfishers to the island of Guam (United States Territory), where they are currently extirpated, as well as to maintaining kingfisher populations on the islands of Pohnpei and Palau. Results further indicated that limited forest resources may restrict dispersal opportunities and, therefore, play a role in delayed dispersal and cooperative behaviors in Micronesian kingfishers.

  3. Ultramorphological and histological studies on the tongue of the common kingfisher in relation to its feeding habit

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sh.A. Al-Zahaby

    2014-05-01

    The tongue of the studied bird is an elongated, tubby and consistent organ of triangular shape of about 8.9 mm in length. It drops in the posterior quarter of the lower part of the very long bill. It is composed of three successive regions; blunt apex, stocky body and root. In addition to the giant conical papillae demarcating the tongue’s body from root, numerous caudally directed spiny conical papillae are differently distributed on the dorsal and lateral surfaces of the lingual body and root. Both papillae appears to help catching and directly swallowing preys, however the apex is covered with superposed foliate papillae. By light microscope, the dorsal lingual epithelium is composed of a keratinized stratified squamous epithelium. The stratum basale is followed by a thick stratum spinosum of polyhedral cells containing some deeply embedded taste buds and gives rise to the stratum corneum cell layer. The loose connective tissue core (lamina propria which embraces some blood vessels and melanocytes forms finger-like dermal papillae of different heights under the epithelium. It also contains branched tubulo-alveolar salivary glands mainly of massive gelatinous mucus secreted on the epithelial surface to facilitate food-intake indicating a close relationship of the lingual structure with the common kingfisher feeding habit which feeds mainly on fishes and aquatic arthropods.

  4. Microclimate and nest-site selection in Micronesian Kingfishers

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kesler, Dylan C.; Haig, Susan M.

    2005-01-01

    We studied the relationship between microclimate and nest-site selection in the Pohnpei Micronesian Kingfisher (Todiramphus cinnamominus reichenbachii) which excavates nest cavities from the mudlike nest structures of arboreal termites (Nasutitermes sp.) or termitaria. Mean daily high temperatures at termitaria were cooler and daily low temperatures were warmer than at random sites in the forest. Results also indicate that termitaria provided insulation from temperature extremes, and that temperatures inside termitaria were within the thermoneutral zone of Micronesian Kingfishers more often than those outside. No differences were identified in temperatures at sites where nest termitaria and nonnest termitaria occurred or among the insulation properties of used and unused termitaria. These results suggest that although termitaria provide insulation from thermal extremes and a metabolically less stressful microclimate, king-fishers did not select from among available termitaria based on their thermal properties. Our findings are relevant to conservation efforts for the critically endangered Guam Micronesian Kingfisher (T. c. cinnamominus) which is extinct in the wild and exists only as a captive population. Captive breeding facilities should provide aviaries with daily ambient temperatures ranging from 22.06 A?C to 28.05 A?C to reduce microclimate-associated metabolic stress and to replicate microclimates used by wild Micronesian Kingfishers.

  5. Belted kingfishers as ecological monitors of contamination: A review

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Landrum, C.L.

    1993-03-01

    Aquatic systems serve as transport pathways and reservoirs for most of the contaminants known to be present on the Oak Ridge Reservation (ORR). Organisms that live in aquatic systems accumulate some of these contaminants from their food and directly from the water or sediment. A wide array of terrestrial organisms feeds on aquatic organisms and may accumulate contaminants from aquatic prey. The belted kingfisher (Ceryle alcyon) is a piscivorous and territorial avian species that may be a suitable monitor of contaminant accumulation at specific sites on the ORR. A kingfisher collected on White Oak Lake in 1991 had a 137 Cs concentration of 568 pCi/g in muscle tissue, which exceeds levels found in any other waterfowl collected from the lake. An investigation into the efficacy of using the kingfisher as an ecological indicator of aquatic contaminants on the ORR was initiated in late August 1992. The primary objective of this study was to acquire information concerning the ecology of the kingfisher to determine how the species could be used within the framework of the Biological Monitoring and Abatement Program at Oak Ridge National Laboratory (ORNL). A second important objective of the study was to examine the possible somatic and reproductive effects of polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs), Hg, and various radioactive contaminants on piscivorous birds by reviewing pollution ecology studies conducted on those species

  6. Belted kingfishers as ecological monitors of contamination: A review

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Landrum, C.L. [North Texas Univ., Denton, TX (United States). Dept. of Biology; Ashwood, T.L.; Cox, D.K. [Oak Ridge National Lab., TN (United States)

    1993-03-01

    Aquatic systems serve as transport pathways and reservoirs for most of the contaminants known to be present on the Oak Ridge Reservation (ORR). Organisms that live in aquatic systems accumulate some of these contaminants from their food and directly from the water or sediment. A wide array of terrestrial organisms feeds on aquatic organisms and may accumulate contaminants from aquatic prey. The belted kingfisher (Ceryle alcyon) is a piscivorous and territorial avian species that may be a suitable monitor of contaminant accumulation at specific sites on the ORR. A kingfisher collected on White Oak Lake in 1991 had a {sup 137}Cs concentration of 568 pCi/g in muscle tissue, which exceeds levels found in any other waterfowl collected from the lake. An investigation into the efficacy of using the kingfisher as an ecological indicator of aquatic contaminants on the ORR was initiated in late August 1992. The primary objective of this study was to acquire information concerning the ecology of the kingfisher to determine how the species could be used within the framework of the Biological Monitoring and Abatement Program at Oak Ridge National Laboratory (ORNL). A second important objective of the study was to examine the possible somatic and reproductive effects of polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs), Hg, and various radioactive contaminants on piscivorous birds by reviewing pollution ecology studies conducted on those species.

  7. VizieR Online Data Catalog: SEDs of the radio continuum from KINGFISHER (Tabatabaei+, 2017)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tabatabaei, F. S.; Schinnerer, E.; Krause, M.; Dumas, G.; Meidt, S.; Damas-Segovia, A.; Beck, R.; Murphy, E. J.; Mulcahy, D. D.; Groves, B.; Bolatto, A.; Dale, D.; Galametz, M.; Sandstrom, K.; Boquien, M.; Calzetti, D.; Kennicutt, R. C.; Hunt, L. K.; de Looze, I.; Pellegrini, E. W.

    2017-10-01

    The KINGFISH sample consists of 61 nearby galaxies of different morphological types. From this sample, we selected all galaxies with declinations >=-21° and named this subsample KINGFISHER (KINGFISH galaxies Emitting in Radio). These galaxies can be observed with the Effelsberg 100m single-dish telescope to obtain global measurements of the radio continuum at 20cm, 6cm, and 3.6cm. The non-KINGFISH galaxy, M51, is also included in this study. We observed 35 of these galaxies at 6cm, 10 galaxies at 20cm, and 7 at 3.6cm to complete already existing archival data during four observation runs (2008 Dec, 2009 Dec, 2010 Apr and 2010 Dec & 2012 Mar). (3 data files).

  8. Foraging Habitat Distributions Affect Territory Size and Shape in the Tuamotu Kingfisher

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Dylan C. Kesler

    2012-01-01

    Full Text Available I studied factors influencing territory configuration in the Tuamotu kingfisher (Todiramphus gambieri. Radiotelemetry data were used to define territory boundaries, and I tested for effects on territory size and shape of landscape habitat composition and foraging patch configuration. Tuamotu kingfisher territories were larger in areas with reduced densities of coconut plantation foraging habitat, and territories were less circular in the study site that had a single slender patch of foraging habitat. Maximum territory length did not differ between study sites, however, which suggested that the size of Tuamotu kingfisher territories might be bounded by the combined influence of maximum travel distances and habitat configurations. Results also suggested that birds enlarge territories as they age. Together, results supported previous work indicating that territory configurations represent a balance between the costs of defending a territory and gains from territory ownership.

  9. Thermal characteristics of wild and captive Micronesian Kingfisher nesting habitats

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kesler, Dylan C.; Haig, Susan M.

    2004-01-01

    To provide information for managing the captive population of endangered Guam Micronesian kingfishers (Halcyon cinnamomina cinnamomina), four biologically relevant thermal metrics were compared among captive facilities on the United States mainland and habitats used by wild Micronesian kingfishers on the island of Pohnpei (H. c. reichenbachii), Federated States of Micronesia. Additionally, aviaries where kingfishers laid eggs were compared to those in which birds did not attempt to breed. Compared to aviaries, habitats used by wild Pohnpei kingfishers had 3.2A?C higher daily maximum and minimum temperatures and the proportion of time when temperatures were in the birds' thermoneutral zone was 45% greater. No differences were found in the magnitude of temperature fluctuation in captive and wild environments. In captive environments in which birds bred, daily maximum temperatures were 2.1A?C higher and temperatures were within the thermoneutral zone 25% more often than in the aviaries where the kingfishers did not breed. No differences were found in the magnitude of temperature fluctuation or the daily minimum temperature. Results suggest that the thermal environment has the potential to influence reproduction, and that consideration should be given to increasing temperatures in captive breeding facilities to improve propagation of the endangered Micronesian kingfisher.

  10. Assessing effectiveness of electrical stunning and chillingin ice water of farmed yellowtail kingfish, common sole and pike-perch

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Llonch, P.; Lambooij, E.; Reimert, H.G.M.; Vis, van de J.W.

    2012-01-01

    Animals should be rendered unconscious before slaughter in order to avoid suffering or pain. The objective of this study was to evaluate an electrical stunning after dewatering to induce instantaneous unconsciousness and insensibility in yellowtail kingfish (Seriola lalandi), common sole (Solea

  11. Sex determination of Pohnpei Micronesian kingfishers using morphological and molecular genetic techniques

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kesler, Dylan C.; Lopes, I.F.; Haig, Susan M.

    2006-01-01

    Conservation-oriented studies of Micronesian Kingfishers (Todiramphus cinnamominus) have been hindered by a lack of basic natural history information, despite the status of the Guam subspecies (T. c. cinnamominus) as one of the most endangered species in the world. We used tissue samples and morphometric measures from museum specimens and wild-captured Pohnpei Micronesian Kingfishers (T. c. reichenbachii) to develop methods for sex determination. We present a modified molecular protocol and a discriminant function that yields the probability that a particular individual is male or female. Our results revealed that females were significantly larger than males, and the discriminant function correctly predicted sex in 73% (30/41) of the individuals. The sex of 86% (18/21) of individuals was correctly assigned when a moderate reliability threshold was set. Sex determination using molecular genetic techniques was more reliable than methods based on morphology. Our results will facilitate recovery efforts for the critically endangered Guam Micronesian Kingfisher and provide a basis for sex determination in the 11 other endangered congeners in the Pacific Basin.

  12. Using the kingfisher (Alcedo atthis) as a bioindicator of PCBs and PBDEs in the dinghushan biosphere reserve, China.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mo, Ling; Wu, Jiang-Ping; Luo, Xiao-Jun; Li, Ke-Lin; Peng, Ying; Feng, An-Hong; Zhang, Qiang; Zou, Fa-Sheng; Mai, Bi-Xian

    2013-07-01

    The Dinghushan Biosphere Reserve is a nature reserve and a site for the study of tropical and subtropical forest ecosystems. Rapid industrialization and intensive electronic waste-recycling activities around the biosphere reserve have resulted in elevated levels of industrial organic contaminants in the local environment that may cause adverse effects on wildlife that inhabits this area. In the present study, polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs), polybrominated diphenyl ethers (PBDEs), and 2 alternative brominated flame retardants (BFRs)-decabromodiphenyl ethane (DBDPE) and 1,2-bis(2,4,6-tribromophenoxy) ethane (BTBPE)-were investigated in the biosphere reserve and a reference site by using the kingfisher (Alcedo atthis) as a bioindicator. Residue concentrations in kingfishers from the Dinghushan Biosphere Reserve ranged from 490 ng/g to 3000 ng/g, 51 ng/g to 420 ng/g, 0.44 ng/g to 90 ng/g, and 0.04 ng/g to 0.87 ng/g lipid weight for ∑PCBs, ∑PBDEs, DBDPE, and BTBPE, respectively. With the exception of the BTBPE, these levels were 2 to 5 times higher than those detected in kingfishers from the reference site. The contaminant patterns from the biosphere reserve were also different, with larger PCB contributions in comparison with the reference site. The estimated predator-prey biomagnification factors (BMFs) showed that most of the PCB and PBDE congeners and BTBPE were biomagnified in kingfishers from the biosphere reserve. The calculated toxic equivalent quantity (TEQ) concentrations of major coplanar PCB congeners in kingfishers from the biosphere reserve ranged from 18 pg/g to 66 pg/g wet weight, with some of these TEQ concentrations reaching or exceeding the levels known to impair bird reproduction and survival. Copyright © 2013 SETAC.

  13. Kingfisher feathers - colouration by pigments, spongy nanostructures and thin films

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Stavenga, Doekele G.; Tinbergen, Jan; Leertouwer, Hein L.; Wilts, Bodo D.

    2011-01-01

    The colours of the common kingfisher, Alcedo atthis, reside in the barbs of the three main types of feather: the orange breast feathers, the cyan back feathers and the blue tail feathers. Scanning electron microscopy showed that the orange barbs contain small pigment granules. The cyan and blue

  14. Kingfisher feathers - colouration by pigments, spongy nanostructures and thin films

    OpenAIRE

    Stavenga, Doekele G.; Tinbergen, Jan; Leertouwer, Hein L.; Wilts, Bodo D.

    2011-01-01

    The colours of the common kingfisher, Alcedo atthis, reside in the barbs of the three main types of feather: the orange breast feathers, the cyan back feathers and the blue tail feathers. Scanning electron microscopy showed that the orange barbs contain small pigment granules. The cyan and blue barbs contain spongy nanostructures with slightly different dimensions, causing different reflectance spectra. Imaging scatterometry showed that the pigmented barbs create a diffuse orange scattering a...

  15. A probabilistic risk assessment of the effects of methylmercury and PCBs on mink and kingfishers along East Fork Poplar Creek, Oak Ridge, Tennessee, USA

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Moore, D.R.J.; Sample, B.E.; Suter, G.W.; Parkhurst, B.R.; Teed, R.S.

    1999-12-01

    Over fifty years of operations, storage, and disposal of wastes from the US Department of Energy (US DOE) Y-12 nuclear weapons facility at Oak Ridge, Tennessee, USA, has resulted in the contamination of water, sediment, biota, and floodplain soils of East Fork Poplar Creek. A preliminary assessment revealed that methylmercury and polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs) were the contaminants of most concern. Because these contaminants are persistent, accumulate in tissues, and biomagnify up the food chain, piscivorous wildlife are the biota at greatest risk of exposure. The objective of this study was to estimate the risks posed by methylmercury and PCBs to two piscivorous species: mink and belted kingfishers. The authors conducted Monte Carlo simulations to estimate total daily intakes of each contaminant by each species and then integrated the resulting distributions with their respective dose-response curves to estimate risks. The results indicate that methylmercury poses a moderate risk to female mink (24% probability of at least 15% mortality) and kingfishers (50% probability of at least a 12--28% decline in fecundity depending on location). The PCBs pose a very serious risk to mink (52% probability of at least a 50% decline in reproductive fecundity), a species known to be especially sensitive to the effects of organochlorine substances, but little risk to kingfishers (<5% probability of a decline in reproductive fecundity greater than 10% at any location).

  16. Territoriality, prospecting, and dispersal in cooperatively breeding Micronesian Kingfishers (Todiramphus cinnamominus reichenbachii)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kesler, D.C.; Haig, S.M.

    2007-01-01

    We investigated territoriality, prospecting, and dispersal behavior in cooperatively breeding Pohnpei Micronesian Kingfishers (Todiramphus cinnamominus reichenbachii) throughout the annual cycle using radiotelemetry and color-band resights. Mean home-range size was 6.3 ha and territories were 8.1 ha. Within territories, Micronesian Kingfishers shared 63% of their home-range space with coterritorial occupants, and 3% was shared with extraterritorial conspecifics. Birds on cooperative territories had larger home ranges that overlapped more with coterritory occupants' home ranges than birds in pair-held territories. Despite evidence suggesting that resources necessary for survival and reproduction occurred on each territory, Micronesian Kingfishers of all age and sex classes made extraterritorial prospecting movements. Prospecting was rare; it comprised only 4.3% of our observations. When birds departed on forays, they were gone for ∼1.9 h and returned to home territories before sunset. Prospecting by dominant birds was temporally correlated with courtship and nest initiation, and birds were observed at neighboring nest sites with opposite-sex conspecifics during the period when females were available for fertilization. Juveniles and helpers prospected throughout the year and made repeated homesteading movements to dispersal destinations before dispersing. Mean dispersal distance for radiomarked individuals was 849 m. Results suggest that prospecting in Micronesian Kingfishers is a complex behavior that provides information for dispersal decisions and familiarity with dispersal destinations. Additionally, extraterritorial movements may provide covert opportunities for reproduction, which have potential to profoundly influence the distribution of fitness among helper and dominant Micronesian Kingfishers.

  17. Origin of yellow kingfish, Seriola lalandi, from Lord Howe Island, Australia, inferred from otolith chemistry

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Patterson, H.M.; Swearer, S.E.

    2008-01-01

    Yellowtail kingfish, Seriola lalandi (Family Carangidae), sustain important commercial and recreational fisheries in New South Wales (NSW), Australia. However, little is known about their population structure, particularly whether the kingfish around Lord Howe Island (LHI) comprise a distinct stock, separate from that of the NSW stock. We examined the otolith chemistry from juvenile kingfish collected from LHI, several NSW sites and Elizabeth and Middleton reefs (EMR) and compared those elemental signatures to the juvenile portion of adult otoliths collected from LHI to determine where the adults may have originated. Our results indicate a robust separation in otolith signatures from different locations (error rate of classification ranged from 3.5% to 9.9%), and suggest that a significant proportion of the adult kingfish sampled (28%) may have originated in the waters around LHI or nearby EMR. Further research may indicate that the management of kingfish in NSW waters could benefit from a more spatially explicit strategy. (author). 32 refs., 3 figs., 2 tabs.

  18. Forced sustained swimming exercise at optimal speed enhances growth of juvenile yellowtail kingfish (Seriola lalandi)

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Palstra, A.P.; Mes, D.; Kusters, K.; Roques, J.A.C.; Flik, G.; Kloet, K.; Blonk, R.J.W.

    2015-01-01

    Swimming exercise at optimal speed may optimize growth performance of yellowtail kingfish in a recirculating aquaculture system. Therefore, optimal swimming speeds (U-opt in m s(-1) or body lengths s(-1), BL s(-1)) were assessed and then applied to determine the effects of long-term forced and

  19. Belted kingfishers: Under surveillance and sampled in the privacy of their own burrow

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Baron, L.A.; Ashwood, T.L.

    1995-01-01

    The belted kingfisher, a common piscivore of the Oak Ridge Reservation (ORR), bioaccumulates contaminants from consumption of aquatic prey. Three kingfisher carcasses found near contaminated streams on the ORR were analyzed. Mercury, cadmium, and selenium bioaccumulated within the liver, kidney, and feathers. Additionally, PCB-1254 accumulated in muscle and lipid tissue, while Cesium-137 accumulated within the muscle and whole body. These contaminant levels have been shown to produce a variety of toxicological effects (i.e., reproductive impairment, central nervous system dysfunction) within other species of birds. In addition to use of this data for ecological risk assessment, kingfishers can also be monitored as a viable bioindicator species reflecting environmental contaminant levels over time. However, current sampling methods of burrow excavation or the use of mist nets can be detrimental to the reproductive success of the birds. The authors present a method for obtaining adequate samples of feathers and other remnants (i.e., egg shells, dried regurgitant) found in the burrow during or following the nesting season. The collection of samples following surveillance of the burrow and its contents was performed with the use of a 15 ft-long flexible, portable probe containing a video camera. Once sighted with the probe, contents of the burrow were collected by insertion of an additional tube attached to a hand held vacuum cleaner (Dirt Devil reg-sign). Feathers collected from a nest at an uncontaminated site contained selenium, lead and mercury. Cesium-137 was found in an egg shell collected from a nest at a radiologically contaminated site. Close-up photos of a kingfisher mother incubating her eggs and nestlings within two burrows will also be shown. This surveillance and sampling technique can also be used for monitoring other burrowing terrestrial species

  20. Updated 34-band Photometry for the SINGS/KINGFISH Samples of Nearby Galaxies

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Dale, D. A.; Turner, J. A. [Department of Physics and Astronomy, University of Wyoming, Laramie WY (United States); Cook, D. O. [Cahill Center for Astronomy and Astrophysics, California Institute of Technology, Pasadena CA (United States); Roussel, H. [Institut d’Astrophysique de Paris, Sorbonne Universités, Paris (France); Armus, L.; Helou, G. [Spitzer Science Center, California Institute of Technology, Pasadena, CA (United States); Bolatto, A. D. [Department of Astronomy, University of Maryland, College Park, MD (United States); Boquien, M. [Unidad de Astronomía, Universidad de Antofagasta, Antofagasta (Chile); Brown, M. J. I. [School of Physics and Astronomy, Monash University, Victoria 3800 (Australia); Calzetti, D. [Department of Astronomy, University of Massachusetts, Amherst MA (United States); Looze, I. De [Sterrenkundig Observatorium, Universiteit Gent, Gent (Belgium); Galametz, M. [European Southern Observatory, Garching (Germany); Gordon, K. D. [Space Telescope Science Institute, Baltimore MD (United States); Groves, B. A. [Research School of Astronomy and Astrophysics, Australian National University, Canberra (Australia); Jarrett, T. H. [Astronomy Department, University of Capetown, Rondebosch (South Africa); Herrera-Camus, R. [Max-Planck-Institut für Extraterrestrische Physik, Garching (Germany); Hinz, J. L. [Steward Observatory, University of Arizona, Tucson AZ (United States); Hunt, L. K. [INAF—Osservatorio Astrofisico di Arcetri, Firenze (Italy); Kennicutt, R. C. [Institute of Astronomy, University of Cambridge, Cambridge (United Kingdom); Murphy, E. J., E-mail: ddale@uwyo.edu [National Radio Astronomy Observatory, Charlottesville, VA (United States); and others

    2017-03-01

    We present an update to the ultraviolet-to-radio database of global broadband photometry for the 79 nearby galaxies that comprise the union of the KINGFISH (Key Insights on Nearby Galaxies: A Far-Infrared Survey with Herschel ) and SINGS ( Spitzer Infrared Nearby Galaxies Survey) samples. The 34-band data set presented here includes contributions from observational work carried out with a variety of facilities including GALEX , SDSS, Pan-STARRS1, NOAO , 2MASS, Wide-Field Infrared Survey Explorer , Spitzer , Herschel , Planck , JCMT , and the VLA. Improvements of note include recalibrations of previously published SINGS BVR {sub C} I {sub C} and KINGFISH far-infrared/submillimeter photometry. Similar to previous results in the literature, an excess of submillimeter emission above model predictions is seen primarily for low-metallicity dwarf or irregular galaxies. This 33-band photometric data set for the combined KINGFISH+SINGS sample serves as an important multiwavelength reference for the variety of galaxies observed at low redshift. A thorough analysis of the observed spectral energy distributions is carried out in a companion paper.

  1. Updated 34-band Photometry for the SINGS/KINGFISH Samples of Nearby Galaxies

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Dale, D. A.; Turner, J. A.; Cook, D. O.; Roussel, H.; Armus, L.; Helou, G.; Bolatto, A. D.; Boquien, M.; Brown, M. J. I.; Calzetti, D.; Looze, I. De; Galametz, M.; Gordon, K. D.; Groves, B. A.; Jarrett, T. H.; Herrera-Camus, R.; Hinz, J. L.; Hunt, L. K.; Kennicutt, R. C.; Murphy, E. J.

    2017-01-01

    We present an update to the ultraviolet-to-radio database of global broadband photometry for the 79 nearby galaxies that comprise the union of the KINGFISH (Key Insights on Nearby Galaxies: A Far-Infrared Survey with Herschel ) and SINGS ( Spitzer Infrared Nearby Galaxies Survey) samples. The 34-band data set presented here includes contributions from observational work carried out with a variety of facilities including GALEX , SDSS, Pan-STARRS1, NOAO , 2MASS, Wide-Field Infrared Survey Explorer , Spitzer , Herschel , Planck , JCMT , and the VLA. Improvements of note include recalibrations of previously published SINGS BVR C I C and KINGFISH far-infrared/submillimeter photometry. Similar to previous results in the literature, an excess of submillimeter emission above model predictions is seen primarily for low-metallicity dwarf or irregular galaxies. This 33-band photometric data set for the combined KINGFISH+SINGS sample serves as an important multiwavelength reference for the variety of galaxies observed at low redshift. A thorough analysis of the observed spectral energy distributions is carried out in a companion paper.

  2. First High-Density Linkage Map and Single Nucleotide Polymorphisms Significantly Associated With Traits of Economic Importance in Yellowtail Kingfish Seriola lalandi

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Nguyen H. Nguyen

    2018-04-01

    Full Text Available The genetic resources available for the commercially important fish species Yellowtail kingfish (YTK (Seriola lalandi are relative sparse. To overcome this, we aimed (1 to develop a linkage map for this species, and (2 to identify markers/variants associated with economically important traits in kingfish (with an emphasis on body weight. Genetic and genomic analyses were conducted using 13,898 single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs generated from a new high-throughput genotyping by sequencing platform, Diversity Arrays Technology (DArTseqTM in a pedigreed population comprising 752 animals. The linkage analysis enabled to map about 4,000 markers to 24 linkage groups (LGs, with an average density of 3.4 SNPs per cM. The linkage map was integrated into a genome-wide association study (GWAS and identified six variants/SNPs associated with body weight (P < 5e-8 when a multi-locus mixed model was used. Two out of the six significant markers were mapped to LGs 17 and 23, and collectively they explained 5.8% of the total genetic variance. It is concluded that the newly developed linkage map and the significantly associated markers with body weight provide fundamental information to characterize genetic architecture of growth-related traits in this population of YTK S. lalandi.

  3. First High-Density Linkage Map and Single Nucleotide Polymorphisms Significantly Associated With Traits of Economic Importance in Yellowtail Kingfish Seriola lalandi.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nguyen, Nguyen H; Rastas, Pasi M A; Premachandra, H K A; Knibb, Wayne

    2018-01-01

    The genetic resources available for the commercially important fish species Yellowtail kingfish (YTK) ( Seriola lalandi) are relative sparse. To overcome this, we aimed (1) to develop a linkage map for this species, and (2) to identify markers/variants associated with economically important traits in kingfish (with an emphasis on body weight). Genetic and genomic analyses were conducted using 13,898 single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) generated from a new high-throughput genotyping by sequencing platform, Diversity Arrays Technology (DArTseq TM ) in a pedigreed population comprising 752 animals. The linkage analysis enabled to map about 4,000 markers to 24 linkage groups (LGs), with an average density of 3.4 SNPs per cM. The linkage map was integrated into a genome-wide association study (GWAS) and identified six variants/SNPs associated with body weight ( P 5e -8 ) when a multi-locus mixed model was used. Two out of the six significant markers were mapped to LGs 17 and 23, and collectively they explained 5.8% of the total genetic variance. It is concluded that the newly developed linkage map and the significantly associated markers with body weight provide fundamental information to characterize genetic architecture of growth-related traits in this population of YTK S. lalandi .

  4. LLW Dumpster study: Task 009

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Frye, J.A.

    1989-08-01

    Over a span of several years, the public has reported visible leakage emanating from ten cubic yard Dumpsters used to transport Low Level Radioactive Wastes (LLW) from LANL generation sites to the disposal site at TA-54, Area G. The purpose of this study was to: Investigate probable causes of leakages, Inspect existing Dumpsters in the fields Propose immediate short-range solutions to the problem, and Propose long-range solutions based on predicted future requirements. Field investigations indicated that LLW is handled carefully and professional at the individual generation sites and again during pick-up delivery, and disposal at TA-54. It was also apparent, however, that Dumpsters not designed for LLW service are used to store this radioactive material for extended time periods while being subjected to the full range of Northern New Mexico weather conditions. All Dumpsters inspected had 1/8 in to 2 in gaps in their closures (loading doors and discharge ramps) through which driving rain or melting snow could easily enter. Seven Dumpsters were located outside secure areas. No cases of actual contamination were discovered, only the appearance of contamination i.e. the dripping of collected rainwater or melting ice and snow from Dumpsters being transported over public roads

  5. Forced sustained swimming exercise at optimal speed enhances growth of juvenile yellowtail kingfish (Seriola lalandi).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Palstra, Arjan P; Mes, Daan; Kusters, Kasper; Roques, Jonathan A C; Flik, Gert; Kloet, Kees; Blonk, Robbert J W

    2014-01-01

    Swimming exercise at optimal speed may optimize growth performance of yellowtail kingfish in a recirculating aquaculture system. Therefore, optimal swimming speeds (U opt in m s(-1) or body lengths s(-1), BL s(-1)) were assessed and then applied to determine the effects of long-term forced and sustained swimming at U opt on growth performance of juvenile yellowtail kingfish. U opt was quantified in Blazka-type swim-tunnels for 145, 206, and 311 mm juveniles resulting in values of: (1) 0.70 m s(-1) or 4.83 BL s(-1), (2) 0.82 m s(-1) or 3.25 BL s(-1), and (3) 0.85 m s(-1) or 2.73 BL s(-1). Combined with literature data from larger fish, a relation of U opt (BL s(-1)) = 234.07(BL)(-0.779) (R (2) = 0.9909) was established for this species. Yellowtail kingfish, either forced to perform sustained swimming exercise at an optimal speed of 2.46 BL s(-1) ("swimmers") or allowed to perform spontaneous activity at low water flow ("resters") in a newly designed 3600 L oval flume (with flow created by an impeller driven by an electric motor), were then compared. At the start of the experiment, ten fish were sampled representing the initial condition. After 18 days, swimmers (n = 23) showed a 92% greater increase in BL and 46% greater increase in BW as compared to resters (n = 23). As both groups were fed equal rations, feed conversion ratio (FCR) for swimmers was 1.21 vs. 1.74 for resters. Doppler ultrasound imaging showed a statistically significant higher blood flow (31%) in the ventral aorta of swimmers vs. resters (44 ± 3 vs. 34 ± 3 mL min(-1), respectively, under anesthesia). Thus, growth performance can be rapidly improved by optimal swimming, without larger feed investments.

  6. Selection of arboreal termitaria for nesting by cooperatively breeding Micronesian Kingfishers Todiramphus cinnamominus reichenbachii

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kesler, Dylan C.; Haig, Susan M.

    2005-01-01

    Limited nest-site availability appears to be an important factor in the evolution of delayed dispersal and cooperative breeding in some cavity-nesting species. The cooperatively breeding Pohnpei subspecies of Micronesian Kingfisher Todiramphus cinnamominus reichenbachii excavates nest cavities from the nests of arboreal termites Nasutitermes spp., or termitaria. In this first published description of nest-sites for this subspecies, we used surveys, remote sensing and radiotelemetry to evaluate the relationship between nest-site availability and co-operation. Results illustrate that nest termitaria are higher in the forest canopy, larger in volume and occur in areas with more contiguous canopy cover than unused termitaria. Nest termitaria were selected independently of the proximity to forest edges and territory boundaries, and we found no difference in characteristics of termitaria used by cooperative groups and breeding pairs. Logistic regression modelling indicated that termitaria with nest-like characteristics were not limited in abundance, suggesting that neither the prospects of inheriting nesting resources nor limited nest-site abundance are probable explanations for delayed dispersal in the Pohnpei subspecies of Micronesian Kingfisher.

  7. Conservation biology for suites of species: Demographic modeling for Pacific island kingfishers

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kesler, D.C.; Haig, S.M.

    2007-01-01

    Conservation practitioners frequently extrapolate data from single-species investigations when managing critically endangered populations. However, few researchers initiate work with the intent of making findings useful to conservation efforts for other species. We presented and explored the concept of conducting conservation-oriented research for suites of geographically separated populations with similar natural histories, resource needs, and extinction threats. An example was provided in the form of an investigation into the population demography of endangered Micronesian kingfishers (Todiramphus cinnamominus). We provided the first demographic parameter estimates for any of the 12 endangered Pacific Todiramphus species, and used results to develop a population projection matrix model for management throughout the insular Pacific. Further, we used the model for elasticity and simulation analyses with demographic values that randomly varied across ranges that might characterize congener populations. Results from elasticity and simulation analyses indicated that changes in breeding adult survival exerted the greatest magnitude of influence on population dynamics. However, changes in nestling survival were more consistently correlated with population dynamics as demographic rates were randomly altered. We concluded that conservation practitioners working with endangered Pacific kingfishers should primarily focus efforts on factors affecting nestling and breeder survival, and secondarily address fledgling juveniles and helpers. Further, we described how the generalized base model might be changed to focus on individual populations and discussed the potential application of multi-species models to other conservation situations. ?? 2007 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  8. 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

  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.

  10. Task E container corrosion studies: Annual report

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Bunnell, L.R.; Doremus, L.A.; Topping, J.B.; Duncan, D.R.

    1994-06-01

    The Pacific Northwest Laboratory is conducting the Solid Waste Technology Support Program (SWTSP) for Westinghouse Hanford Company (WHC). Task E is the Container Corrosion Study Portion of the SWTSP that will perform testing to provide defensible data on the corrosion of low-carbon steel, as used in drums to contain chemical and radioactive wastes at the Hanford Site. A second objective of Task E is to provide and test practical alternative materials that have higher corrosion resistance than low-carbon steel. The scope of work for fiscal year (FY) 1993 included initial testing of mild steel specimens buried in Hanford soils or exposed to atmospheric corrosion in metal storage sheds. During FY 1993, progress was made in three areas of Task E. First, exposure of test materials began at the Soil Corrosion Test Site where low-carbon steel specimens were placed in the soil in five test shafts at depths of 9 m (30 ft). Second, the corrosion measurement of low-carbon steel in the soil of two solid waste trenches continued. The total exposure time is ∼ 500 days. Third, an atmospheric corrosion test of low-carbon steel was put initiated in a metal shed (Building 2401-W) in the 200 West Area. This annual report describes the Task E efforts and provides a current status

  11. 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.

  12. Forced sustained swimming exercise at optimal speed enhances growth of juvenile yellowtail kingfish (Seriola lalandi

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Arjan P. Palstra

    2015-01-01

    Full Text Available Swimming exercise at optimal speed may optimize growth performance of yellowtail kingfish in a recirculating aquaculture system. Therefore, optimal swimming speeds (Uopt in m s-1 or body lengths s-1, BL s-1 were assessed and then applied to determine the effects of long-term forced and sustained swimming at Uopt on growth performance of juvenile yellowtail kingfish. Uopt was quantified in Blazka-type swim-tunnels for 145 mm, 206 mm and 311 mm juveniles resulting in values of: 1 0.70 m s-1 or 4.83 BL s-1, 2 0.82 m s-1 or 3.25 BL s-1 and 3 0.85 m s-1 or 2.73 BL s-1. Combined with literature data from larger fish, a relation of Uopt (BL s-1 = 234.07(BL-0.779 (R2= 0.9909 was established for this species. Yellowtail kingfish, either forced to perform sustained swimming exercise at an optimal speed of 2.46 BL s-1 (‘swimmers’ or allowed to perform spontaneous activity at low water flow (‘resters’ in a newly designed 3,600 L oval flume (with flow created by an impeller driven by an electric motor, were then compared. At the start of the experiment, ten fish were sampled representing the initial condition. After 18 days, swimmers (n= 23 showed a 92% greater increase in BL and 46% greater increase in BW as compared to resters (n= 23. As both groups were fed equal rations, feed conversion ratio (FCR for swimmers was 1.21 vs. 1.74 for resters. Doppler ultrasound imaging showed a statistically significant higher blood flow (31% in the ventral aorta of swimmers vs. resters (44 ± 3 mL min-1 vs. 34 ± 3 mL min-1, respectively, under anesthesia. Thus growth performance can be rapidly improved by optimal swimming, without larger feed investments.

  13. Honey From Maggots: Aura, Sacrifice, and the Human Universe in Charles Olson's "The Kingfishers"

    Science.gov (United States)

    Roethle, Christopher James

    In this thesis, I contend that some form of aura can be recovered from the ravages of technological reproduction described in Walter Benjamin's "The Work of Art in the Age of its Technological Reproducibility (Third Version)." Recovering this aura, however, may require adopting an aesthetic of immediacy through destruction and even wanton disposability (what Georges Bataille in his general economic theory calls "nonproductive expenditure") to ensure that, though routinely diluted and discarded, the split-second authenticity of a work remains, its radical ephemerality and formal irreproducibility opposing the enslaving, commodifying powers of the copy. The poetry and poetic theory of American poet Charles Olson, especially in his long poem "The Kingfishers" and his essays "Projective Verse" and "Human Universe," serves as an example of how an author might inscribe auratic energy along nonproductive, general economic lines.

  14. Accelerator research studies: Progress report, Task B

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    1985-06-01

    The main objectives in Task B of the research program are summarized as follows: (1) studies of the collective acceleration of positive ions from a localized plasma source by an intense relativistic electron beam (IREB), (2) studies of ways in which external control may be achieved over the electron beam front in order to achieve higher ion energies - the Beam Front Accelerator (BFA) concept, and (3) study of electron and ion beam generation in a new kind of compact pulsed accelerator in which energy is stored inductively and switched using a plasma focus opening switch. During the past year, substantial progress was made in each of these areas. Our exploratory research on the collective acceleration of laser-produced ions has confirmed the acceleration of C, Al, and Fe ions to peak energies in excess of 10 MeV/amu. In addition, studies of the relation between collective ion acceleration and electron beam propagation in vacuum have shed new light on the experimental processes that lead to energy transfer from electrons to ions. Meanwhile, extensive progress has been made in our attempts to use analytical theory and numerical simulation to model ion acceleration in these systems. Our resultant improved understanding of the processes that limit the peak ion energy has had a profound impact on our plans for further research in this area. Studies of the Compact Pulsed Accelerator have included both ion and electron beam extraction from the device. Its potential to reduce the volume of pulse power sources by an order of magnitude has already been demonstrated, and plans are currently underway to scale the experiment up to voltages in the 1 MV range

  15. Task Selection, Task Switching and Multitasking during Computer-Based Independent Study

    Science.gov (United States)

    Judd, Terry

    2015-01-01

    Detailed logs of students' computer use, during independent study sessions, were captured in an open-access computer laboratory. Each log consisted of a chronological sequence of tasks representing either the application or the Internet domain displayed in the workstation's active window. Each task was classified using a three-tier schema…

  16. A Cross-Cultural Study of Task Specificity in Creativity

    Science.gov (United States)

    Storme, Martin; Lubart, Todd; Myszkowski, Nils; Cheung, Ping Chung; Tong, Toby; Lau, Sing

    2017-01-01

    This study provides new evidence concerning task specificity in creativity--examining through a cross-cultural perspective the extent to which performance in graphic versus verbal creativity tasks (domain specificity) and in divergent versus convergent creativity tasks (process specificity) are correlated. The relations between different…

  17. Kingfisher feathers--colouration by pigments, spongy nanostructures and thin films.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stavenga, Doekele G; Tinbergen, Jan; Leertouwer, Hein L; Wilts, Bodo D

    2011-12-01

    The colours of the common kingfisher, Alcedo atthis, reside in the barbs of the three main types of feather: the orange breast feathers, the cyan back feathers and the blue tail feathers. Scanning electron microscopy showed that the orange barbs contain small pigment granules. The cyan and blue barbs contain spongy nanostructures with slightly different dimensions, causing different reflectance spectra. Imaging scatterometry showed that the pigmented barbs create a diffuse orange scattering and the spongy barb structures create iridescence. The extent of the angle-dependent light scattering increases with decreasing wavelength. All barbs have a cortical envelope with a thickness of a few micrometres. The reflectance spectra of the cortex of the barbs show oscillations when measured from small areas, but when measured from larger areas the spectra become wavelength independent. This can be directly understood with thin film modelling, assuming a somewhat variable cortex thickness. The cortex reflectance appears to be small but not negligible with respect to the pigmentary and structural barb reflectance.

  18. Brain processing of task-relevant and task-irrelevant emotional words: an ERP study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    González-Villar, Alberto J; Triñanes, Yolanda; Zurrón, Montserrat; Carrillo-de-la-Peña, María T

    2014-09-01

    Although there is evidence for preferential perceptual processing of written emotional information, the effects of attentional manipulations and the time course of affective processing require further clarification. In this study, we attempted to investigate how the emotional content of words modulates cerebral functioning (event-related potentials, ERPs) and behavior (reaction times, RTs) when the content is task-irrelevant (emotional Stroop Task, EST) or task-relevant (emotional categorization task, ECT), in a sample of healthy middle-aged women. In the EST, the RTs were longer for emotional words than for neutral words, and in the ECT, they were longer for neutral and negative words than for positive words. A principal components analysis of the ERPs identified various temporospatial factors that were differentially modified by emotional content. P2 was the first emotion-sensitive component, with enhanced factor scores for negative nouns across tasks. The N2 and late positive complex had enhanced factor scores for emotional relative to neutral information only in the ECT. The results reinforce the idea that written emotional information has a preferential processing route, both when it is task-irrelevant (producing behavioral interference) and when it is task-relevant (facilitating the categorization). After early automatic processing of the emotional content, late ERPs become more emotionally modulated as the level of attention to the valence increases.

  19. 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.

  20. Gasification Studies Task 4 Topical Report

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Whitty, Kevin; Fletcher, Thomas; Pugmire, Ronald; Smith, Philip; Sutherland, James; Thornock, Jeremy; Boshayeshi, Babak; Hunsacker, Isaac; Lewis, Aaron; Waind, Travis; Kelly, Kerry

    2014-02-01

    A key objective of the Task 4 activities has been to develop simulation tools to support development, troubleshooting and optimization of pressurized entrained-flow coal gasifiers. The overall gasifier models (Subtask 4.1) combine submodels for fluid flow (Subtask 4.2) and heat transfer (Subtask 4.3) with fundamental understanding of the chemical processes (Subtask 4.4) processes that take place as coal particles are converted to synthesis gas and slag. However, it is important to be able to compare predictions from the models against data obtained from actual operating coal gasifiers, and Subtask 4.6 aims to provide an accessible, non-proprietary system, which can be operated over a wide range of conditions to provide well-characterized data for model validation. Highlights of this work include: • Verification and validation activities performed with the Arches coal gasification simulation tool on experimental data from the CANMET gasifier (Subtask 4.1). • The simulation of multiphase reacting flows with coal particles including detailed gas-phase chemistry calculations using an extension of the one-dimensional turbulence model’s capability (Subtask 4.2). • The demonstration and implementation of the Reverse Monte Carlo ray tracing (RMCRT) radiation algorithm in the ARCHES code (Subtask 4.3). • Determination of steam and CO{sub 2} gasification kinetics of bituminous coal chars at high temperature and elevated pressure under entrained-flow conditions (Subtask 4.4). In addition, attempts were made to gain insight into the chemical structure differences between young and mature coal soot, but both NMR and TEM characterization efforts were hampered by the highly reacted nature of the soot. • The development, operation, and demonstration of in-situ gas phase measurements from the University of Utah’s pilot-scale entrained-flow coal gasifier (EFG) (Subtask 4.6). This subtask aimed at acquiring predictable, consistent performance and characterizing the

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

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jelle eDemanet

    2011-11-01

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

  2. Model and Study of Threatening Tasks and Fatigue

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Ritter, Frank E

    2008-01-01

    ... (a) prepared a protocol for studying how cognition is affected by a stressor (task appraisal) and a mitigator (caffeine), including software for gathering data on working memory, processing speed, and visual signal detection, and a protocol for serial...

  3. Accelerator research studies: Progress report, Task C

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    1985-06-01

    The major effort reported is the study of the feasibility of a 300 MW gyroklystron at ∼9 GHz, and substantial progress has been made. A four-cavity gyroklystron design has been shown to be capable of linear gain as high as 66 dB and to be marginally stable against oscillation in any mode. AM and PM sensitivities to fluctuation in system parameters have also been calculated in the regime of linear operation. Initial non-linear design calculations have also been carried out which include the effect of tapering the axial magnetic guide field over the length of a gyroklystron circuit. Although these calculations are preliminary they do indicate potential for significant efficiency enhancement by magnetic field shaping techniques

  4. How asymmetrical task dependence and task interdependence interact:an individual level study into the effects on affective reactions

    OpenAIRE

    Jong, Simon B. De; Bal, P. Matthijs

    2014-01-01

    Purpose – This study investigates whether research and practice on task design and work teams could benefit from a more nuanced perspective on task (inter)dependencies among team members. Prior research often overlooked that task interdependence captures the average exchange of resources, while asymmetrical task dependence captures the inequalities within an individual's work relationships. To date, no study on work teams has combined the two aspects. Design/methodology/approach – Data was ob...

  5. Imaging gait analysis: An fMRI dual task study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bürki, Céline N; Bridenbaugh, Stephanie A; Reinhardt, Julia; Stippich, Christoph; Kressig, Reto W; Blatow, Maria

    2017-08-01

    In geriatric clinical diagnostics, gait analysis with cognitive-motor dual tasking is used to predict fall risk and cognitive decline. To date, the neural correlates of cognitive-motor dual tasking processes are not fully understood. To investigate these underlying neural mechanisms, we designed an fMRI paradigm to reproduce the gait analysis. We tested the fMRI paradigm's feasibility in a substudy with fifteen young adults and assessed 31 healthy older adults in the main study. First, gait speed and variability were quantified using the GAITRite © electronic walkway. Then, participants lying in the MRI-scanner were stepping on pedals of an MRI-compatible stepping device used to imitate gait during functional imaging. In each session, participants performed cognitive and motor single tasks as well as cognitive-motor dual tasks. Behavioral results showed that the parameters of both gait analyses, GAITRite © and fMRI, were significantly positively correlated. FMRI results revealed significantly reduced brain activation during dual task compared to single task conditions. Functional ROI analysis showed that activation in the superior parietal lobe (SPL) decreased less from single to dual task condition than activation in primary motor cortex and in supplementary motor areas. Moreover, SPL activation was increased during dual tasks in subjects exhibiting lower stepping speed and lower executive control. We were able to simulate walking during functional imaging with valid results that reproduce those from the GAITRite © gait analysis. On the neural level, SPL seems to play a crucial role in cognitive-motor dual tasking and to be linked to divided attention processes, particularly when motor activity is involved.

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

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Révész, Andrea; Michel, Marije; Gilabert, Roger

    2016-01-01

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

  7. Task Requirements, Task Representation, and Self-Reported Citation Functions: An Exploratory Study of a Successful L2 Student's Writing

    Science.gov (United States)

    Petric, Bojana; Harwood, Nigel

    2013-01-01

    This mixed-method study investigates the citation behaviour of a successful L2 postgraduate management student, Sofie, in two pieces of writing, written in response to two assignment tasks in two management modules. The tasks belonged to the same assignment type, but differed in the level of direction provided: one was a directed task, accompanied…

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    Revesz, Andrea; Michel, Marije; Gilabert, Roger

    2016-01-01

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

  9. Task rotation in an underground coal mine: A pilot study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jones, Olivia F; James, Carole L

    2018-01-01

    Task rotation is used to decrease the risk of workplace injuries and improve work satisfaction. To investigate the feasibility, benefits and challenges of implementing a task rotation schedule within an underground coalmine in NSW, Australia. A mixed method case control pilot study with the development and implementation of a task rotation schedule for 6 months with two work crews. A questionnaire including The Nordic Musculoskeletal Questionnaire, The Need for Recovery after Work Scale, and The Australian WHOQOL- BREF Australian Edition was used to survey workers at baseline, 3 and 6 months. A focus group was completed with the intervention crew and management at the completion of the study. In total, twenty-seven participants completed the survey. Significant improvements in the psychological and environmental domains of the WHOQOL-BREF questionnaire were found in the intervention crew. Musculoskeletal pain was highest in the elbow, lower back and knee, and fatigue scores improved, across both groups. The intervention crew felt 'mentally fresher', 'didn't do the same task twice in a row', and 'had more task variety which made the shift go quickly'. Task rotation was positively regarded, with psychological benefits identified. Three rotations during a 9-hour shift were feasible and practical in this environment.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    Langeslag, Sandra J E; van Strien, Jan W

    2017-09-18

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

  11. Field studies into the dynamics of product development tasks

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Oorschot, van K.E.; Bertrand, J.W.M.; Rutte, C.G.

    2005-01-01

    Purpose – This paper aims to describe three exploratory field studies investigating which characteristics add to later time to market and/or low product functionality of newly developed products. The studies are conducted at the level of developments tasks, or work packages. The first and second

  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. 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.

  14. The relation between task characteristics, BI quality and task compatibility: An explorative study

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Gaardboe, Rikke; Jonasen, Tanja Svarre; Nyvang, Tom

    2018-01-01

    The purpose of this article is to investigate the relationship between task characteristics, business intelligence (BI) quality, and task compatibility. It is essential to investigate this relationship, as BI often builds up data from the organization's existing information systems, and thus......, is a supplement. In addition, there is a gap within existing research about task characteristics and BI. We conducted a survey of three companies, where 104 BI end users answered the questionnaire. Our findings reveal that BI users who experience high information quality solve difficult tasks, have a specified...

  15. Task E container corrosion studies: Annual report. Revision 1

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Bunnell, L.R.; Doremus, L.A.; Topping, J.B.; Duncan, D.R.

    1994-06-01

    The Pacific Northwest Laboratory is conducting the Solid Waste Technology Support Program (SWTSP) for Westinghouse Hanford Company (WHC). Task E is the Container Corrosion Study Portion of the SWTSP that will perform testing to provide defensible data on the corrosion of low-carbon steel, as used in drums to contain chemical and radioactive wastes at the Hanford Site. A second objective of Task E is to provide and test practical alternative materials that have higher corrosion resistance than low-carbon steel. The scope of work for fiscal year (FY) 1993 included initial testing of mild steel specimens buried in Hanford soils or exposed to atmospheric corrosion in metal storage sheds. During FY 1993, progress was made in three areas of Task E. First, exposure of test materials began at the Soil Corrosion Test Site where low-carbon steel specimens were placed in the soil in five test shafts at depths of 9 m (30 ft). Second, the corrosion measurement of low-carbon steel in the soil of two solid waste trenches continued. The total exposure time is ∼ 500 days. Third, an atmospheric corrosion test of low-carbon steel was initiated in a metal shed (Building 2401-W) in the 200 West Area. This annual report describes the Task E efforts and provides a current status

  16. Training Endogenous Task Shifting Using Music Therapy: A Feasibility Study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lynch, Colleen; LaGasse, A Blythe

    2016-01-01

    People with acquired brain injury (ABI) are highly susceptible to disturbances in executive functioning (EF), and these effects are pervasive. Research studies using music therapy for cognitive improvement in this population are limited. The purpose of this study was to determine the feasibility of a Musical Executive Function Training (MEFT) intervention to address task-shifting skills in adults with ABI and to obtain preliminary evidence of intervention effect on task shifting. Fourteen participants were randomly assigned to one of three groups: a music therapy intervention group (MTG), a singing group (SG), or the no-intervention control group (CG). The SG and MTG met for one hour a day for five days. Feasibility measures included participant completion rates and intervention fidelity. Potential benefits were measured using the Trail Making Test and the Paced Auditory Serial Addition Task as a pre- and posttest measure. Participant completion rates and interventionist fidelity to the protocol supported feasibility. One-way ANOVA of the pre- and posttest group differences revealed a trend toward improvement in the MTG over the SG. Feasibility and effect size data support a larger trial of the MEFT protocol. © the American Music Therapy Association 2016. All rights reserved. For permissions, please e-mail: journals.permissions@oup.com.

  17. A Comparative Study of Task-based vs. Task- supported Teaching Approaches in an EFL Context

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mahdieh Shafipoor

    2015-09-01

    Full Text Available In spite of the numerous merits of task-based language instruction as claimed by its supporters in the last few decades, task-supported teaching approach as an alternative was introduced. Since then, there have been controversial debates over the superiority of each of these two approaches. Thus, in the current research project, the purpose was to consider these two teaching approaches in the scope of English language teaching, with the purpose of exploring the most efficient one in an Iranian EFL context. To this end, 120 sophomore students, majoring in English language translation course at Islamic Azad University, Shar-e-Qods branch were selected among 4 intact reading comprehension II classes. Next, they were divided into two experimental groups. The first experimental group received task-based instruction and for the second experimental group, task-trusted teaching approach was applied. The results of the data analyses turned out that task-trusted teaching approach was superior to task-based teaching in teaching reading to EFL learners.

  18. Random and systematic sampling error when hooking fish to monitor skin fluke (Benedenia seriolae) and gill fluke (Zeuxapta seriolae) burden in Australian farmed yellowtail kingfish (Seriola lalandi).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fensham, J R; Bubner, E; D'Antignana, T; Landos, M; Caraguel, C G B

    2018-05-01

    The Australian farmed yellowtail kingfish (Seriola lalandi, YTK) industry monitor skin fluke (Benedenia seriolae) and gill fluke (Zeuxapta seriolae) burden by pooling the fluke count of 10 hooked YTK. The random and systematic error of this sampling strategy was evaluated to assess potential impact on treatment decisions. Fluke abundance (fluke count per fish) in a study cage (estimated 30,502 fish) was assessed five times using the current sampling protocol and its repeatability was estimated the repeatability coefficient (CR) and the coefficient of variation (CV). Individual body weight, fork length, fluke abundance, prevalence, intensity (fluke count per infested fish) and density (fluke count per Kg of fish) were compared between 100 hooked and 100 seined YTK (assumed representative of the entire population) to estimate potential selection bias. Depending on the fluke species and age category, CR (expected difference in parasite count between 2 sampling iterations) ranged from 0.78 to 114 flukes per fish. Capturing YTK by hooking increased the selection of fish of a weight and length in the lowest 5th percentile of the cage (RR = 5.75, 95% CI: 2.06-16.03, P-value = 0.0001). These lower end YTK had on average an extra 31 juveniles and 6 adults Z. seriolae per Kg of fish and an extra 3 juvenile and 0.4 adult B. seriolae per Kg of fish, compared to the rest of the cage population (P-value sampling towards the smallest and most heavily infested fish in the population, resulting in poor repeatability (more variability amongst sampled fish) and an overestimation of parasite burden in the population. In this particular commercial situation these finding supported that health management program, where the finding of an underestimation of parasite burden could provide a production impact on the study population. In instances where fish populations and parasite burdens are more homogenous, sampling error may be less severe. Sampling error when capturing fish

  19. The Tasks of the Crowd: A Typology of Tasks in Geographic Information Crowdsourcing and a Case Study in Humanitarian Mapping

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    João Porto de Albuquerque

    2016-10-01

    Full Text Available In the past few years, volunteers have produced geographic information of different kinds, using a variety of different crowdsourcing platforms, within a broad range of contexts. However, there is still a lack of clarity about the specific types of tasks that volunteers can perform for deriving geographic information from remotely sensed imagery, and how the quality of the produced information can be assessed for particular task types. To fill this gap, we analyse the existing literature and propose a typology of tasks in geographic information crowdsourcing, which distinguishes between classification, digitisation and conflation tasks. We then present a case study related to the “Missing Maps” project aimed at crowdsourced classification to support humanitarian aid. We use our typology to distinguish between the different types of crowdsourced tasks in the project and choose classification tasks related to identifying roads and settlements for an evaluation of the crowdsourced classification. This evaluation shows that the volunteers achieved a satisfactory overall performance (accuracy: 89%; sensitivity: 73%; and precision: 89%. We also analyse different factors that could influence the performance, concluding that volunteers were more likely to incorrectly classify tasks with small objects. Furthermore, agreement among volunteers was shown to be a very good predictor of the reliability of crowdsourced classification: tasks with the highest agreement level were 41 times more probable to be correctly classified by volunteers. The results thus show that the crowdsourced classification of remotely sensed imagery is able to generate geographic information about human settlements with a high level of quality. This study also makes clear the different sophistication levels of tasks that can be performed by volunteers and reveals some factors that may have an impact on their performance.

  20. The Effects of Study Tasks in a Computer-Based Chemistry Learning Environment

    Science.gov (United States)

    Urhahne, Detlef; Nick, Sabine; Poepping, Anna Christin; Schulz , Sarah Jayne

    2013-01-01

    The present study examines the effects of different study tasks on the acquisition of knowledge about acids and bases in a computer-based learning environment. Three different task formats were selected to create three treatment conditions: learning with gap-fill and matching tasks, learning with multiple-choice tasks, and learning only from text…

  1. Authentic tasks in higher education: Studying design principles for assessment

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    van Keulen, H.; van den Berg, I.; Ramaekers, S.

    2006-01-01

    Students may benefit significantly from learning through authentic tasks. But how do we assess their learning outcomes, taking into account the specific characteristics of authentic tasks? In the second presentation of this symposium on design principles for authentic tasks we present and discuss

  2. San Joaquin River Up-Stream DO TMDL Project Task 4: MonitoringStudy Interim Task Report #3

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Stringfellow, William; Borglin, Sharon; Dahlgren, Randy; Hanlon,Jeremy; Graham, Justin; Burks, Remie; Hutchinson, Kathleen

    2007-03-30

    The purpose of the Dissolved Oxygen Total Maximum Daily LoadProject (DO TMDLProject) is to provide a comprehensive understanding ofthe sources and fate of oxygen consuming materials in the San JoaquinRiver (SJR) watershed between Channel Point and Lander Avenue (upstreamSJR). When completed, this study will provide the stakeholders anunderstanding of the baseline conditions of the basin, provide input foran allocation decision, and provide the stakeholders with a tool formeasuring the impact of any waterquality management program that may beimplemented as part of the DO TMDL process. Previous studies haveidentified algal biomass as the most significant oxygen-demandingsubstance in the DO TMDL Project study-area between of Channel Point andLander Ave onthe SJR. Other oxygen-demanding substances found in theupstream SJR include ammonia and organic carbon from sources other thanalgae. The DO TMDL Project study-area contains municipalities, dairies,wetlands, cattle ranching, irrigated agriculture, and industries thatcould potentially contribute biochemical oxygen demand (BOD) to the SJR.This study is designed to discriminate between algal BOD and othersources of BOD throughout the entire upstream SJR watershed. Algalbiomass is not a conserved substance, but grows and decays in the SJR;hence, characterization of oxygen-demanding substances in the SJR isinherently complicated and requires an integrated effort of extensivemonitoring, scientific study, and modeling. In order to achieve projectobjectives, project activities were divided into a number of Tasks withspecific goals and objectives. In this report, we present the results ofmonitoring and research conducted under Task 4 of the DO TMDL Project.The major objective of Task 4 is to collect sufficient hydrologic (flow)and water quality (WQ) data to characterize the loading of algae, otheroxygen-demanding materials, and nutrients fromindividual tributaries andsub-watersheds of the upstream SJR between Mossdale and

  3. Government Applications Task Force ground truth study of WAG 4

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Evers, T.K.; Smyre, J.L.; King, A.L.

    1997-06-01

    This report documents the Government Applications Task Force (GATF) Buried Waste Project. The project was initiated as a field investigation and verification of the 1994 Strategic Environmental Research and Development Program's (SERDP) Buried Waste Identification Project results. The GATF project team included staff from three US Department of Energy (DOE) Laboratories [Oak Ridge National Laboratory (ORNL), Los Alamos National Laboratory (LANL), and the Savannah River Technology Center (SRTC)] and from the National Exploitation Laboratory. Similar studies were conducted at each of the three DOE laboratories to demonstrate the effective use of remote sensing technologies. The three locations were selected to assess differences in buried waste signatures under various environmental conditions (i.e., climate, terrain, precipitation, geology, etc.). After a brief background discussion of the SERDP Project, this report documents the field investigation (ground truth) results from the 1994--1995 GATF Buried Waste Study at ORNL's Waste Area Grouping (WAG) 4. Figures for this report are located in Appendix A

  4. An fMRI study during finger movement tasks and recalling finger movement tasks in normal subjects and schizophrenia patients

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Ueno, Takefumi

    2003-01-01

    Using fMRI, we investigated the region of the brain, which was activated by the finger movement tasks (F1) and the recalling finger movement tasks (F2). Six right-handed age-matched healthy controls and six Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders-IV (DSM-IV) Schizophrenia patients were included in the study. In healthy controls, contralateral motor area, supplementary motor area and somatosensory area were all activated during F1 and F2. However the contralateral parietal lobe (supramarginal gyrus etc) and ipsilateral cerebellum were also activated during F2. In schizophrenia patients, the contralateral motor area was activated during F1, but the activated region was smaller than that observed in healthy subjects. During F2, the bilateral parietal lobes (sensorimotor cortices, association cortex) were activated, while the activated regions were smaller than those seen in healthy controls and no laterality was observed. In addition, no laterality of the activated regions was clearly observed. These results suggest that the function of recalling motor tasks can be mapped onto the contralateral motor area, somatosensory area, supplementary motor area, parietal association cortices, and ipsilateral cerebellum. In schizophrenia patients, the activated regions are smaller than those observed in healthy controls, and parietal regions are also activated bilaterally during recalling motor tasks. Schizophrenia patients may therefore process to recall motor task differently from healthy subjects while also demonstrate less laterality of the brain. (author)

  5. Novice supervisors' tasks and training - a descriptive study

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Nielsen, Jan; Jacobsen, Claus H.; Mathiesen, Birgit Bork

    development, experience, and practice. In this presentation we focus on the tasks and training of the respondents as novice supervisors. The results show, that a majority of novice supervisors were confronted with complicated jobs, e.g., group, internal and interdisciplinary supervision, but were not prepared......There is a lack of data on the influence of the debut as a supervisor on the later career. However, extrapolating data from therapist development, we assume that the first years as novice supervisor are important for the following career as supervisor in particular. The first job as novice......, i.e. trained, prior to these tasks. These findings imply that more training is needed for novice supervisors. Preferably, this training should be introduced before, or at least parallel to, the first supervisor tasks, preparing the novice supervisors for the often complicated tasks they are meeting....

  6. Brain deactivation in the outperformance in bimodal tasks: an FMRI study.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Tzu-Ching Chiang

    Full Text Available While it is known that some individuals can effectively perform two tasks simultaneously, other individuals cannot. How the brain deals with performing simultaneous tasks remains unclear. In the present study, we aimed to assess which brain areas corresponded to various phenomena in task performance. Nineteen subjects were requested to sequentially perform three blocks of tasks, including two unimodal tasks and one bimodal task. The unimodal tasks measured either visual feature binding or auditory pitch comparison, while the bimodal task required performance of the two tasks simultaneously. The functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI results are compatible with previous studies showing that distinct brain areas, such as the visual cortices, frontal eye field (FEF, lateral parietal lobe (BA7, and medial and inferior frontal lobe, are involved in processing of visual unimodal tasks. In addition, the temporal lobes and Brodmann area 43 (BA43 were involved in processing of auditory unimodal tasks. These results lend support to concepts of modality-specific attention. Compared to the unimodal tasks, bimodal tasks required activation of additional brain areas. Furthermore, while deactivated brain areas were related to good performance in the bimodal task, these areas were not deactivated where the subject performed well in only one of the two simultaneous tasks. These results indicate that efficient information processing does not require some brain areas to be overly active; rather, the specific brain areas need to be relatively deactivated to remain alert and perform well on two tasks simultaneously. Meanwhile, it can also offer a neural basis for biofeedback in training courses, such as courses in how to perform multiple tasks simultaneously.

  7. Evaluating the Effects of Formal Corrective Feedback on Off-Task/On-Task Behavior of Mild Intellectually Disabled Students: An Action Research Study

    Science.gov (United States)

    George, Kevin

    2016-01-01

    The off-task behavior demonstrated by the study participants appears to interfere with classroom instruction, contribute to poor academic performance and in many instances lead to disciplinary actions such as suspension. The purpose of the study entailed determining if formal corrective feedback has an effect on the off-task/on-task behavior of…

  8. Heuristic Task Analysis on E-Learning Course Development: A Formative Research Study

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lee, Ji-Yeon; Reigeluth, Charles M.

    2009-01-01

    Utilizing heuristic task analysis (HTA), a method developed for eliciting, analyzing, and representing expertise in complex cognitive tasks, a formative research study was conducted on the task of e-learning course development to further improve the HTA process. Three instructional designers from three different post-secondary institutions in the…

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    Memarian, Babak; Mitropoulos, Panagiotis

    2015-01-01

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

  10. Following the time course of face gender and expression processing: a task-dependent ERP study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Valdés-Conroy, Berenice; Aguado, Luis; Fernández-Cahill, María; Romero-Ferreiro, Verónica; Diéguez-Risco, Teresa

    2014-05-01

    The effects of task demands and the interaction between gender and expression in face perception were studied using event-related potentials (ERPs). Participants performed three different tasks with male and female faces that were emotionally inexpressive or that showed happy or angry expressions. In two of the tasks (gender and expression categorization) facial properties were task-relevant while in a third task (symbol discrimination) facial information was irrelevant. Effects of expression were observed on the visual P100 component under all task conditions, suggesting the operation of an automatic process that is not influenced by task demands. The earliest interaction between expression and gender was observed later in the face-sensitive N170 component. This component showed differential modulations by specific combinations of gender and expression (e.g., angry male vs. angry female faces). Main effects of expression and task were observed in a later occipito-temporal component peaking around 230 ms post-stimulus onset (EPN or early posterior negativity). Less positive amplitudes in the presence of angry faces and during performance of the gender and expression tasks were observed. Finally, task demands also modulated a positive component peaking around 400 ms (LPC, or late positive complex) that showed enhanced amplitude for the gender task. The pattern of results obtained here adds new evidence about the sequence of operations involved in face processing and the interaction of facial properties (gender and expression) in response to different task demands. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  11. 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.

  12. Non-traditional Sensor Tasking for SSA: A Case Study

    Science.gov (United States)

    Herz, A.; Herz, E.; Center, K.; Martinez, I.; Favero, N.; Clark, C.; Therien, W.; Jeffries, M.

    Industry has recognized that maintaining SSA of the orbital environment going forward is too challenging for the government alone. Consequently there are a significant number of commercial activities in various stages of development standing-up novel sensors and sensor networks to assist in SSA gathering and dissemination. Use of these systems will allow government and military operators to focus on the most sensitive space control issues while allocating routine or lower priority data gathering responsibility to the commercial side. The fact that there will be multiple (perhaps many) commercial sensor capabilities available in this new operational model begets a common access solution. Absent a central access point to assert data needs, optimized use of all commercial sensor resources is not possible and the opportunity for coordinated collections satisfying overarching SSA-elevating objectives is lost. Orbit Logic is maturing its Heimdall Web system - an architecture facilitating “data requestor” perspectives (allowing government operations centers to assert SSA data gathering objectives) and “sensor operator” perspectives (through which multiple sensors of varying phenomenology and capability are integrated via machine -machine interfaces). When requestors submit their needs, Heimdall’s planning engine determines tasking schedules across all sensors, optimizing their use via an SSA-specific figure-of-merit. ExoAnalytic was a key partner in refining the sensor operator interfaces, working with Orbit Logic through specific details of sensor tasking schedule delivery and the return of observation data. Scant preparation on both sides preceded several integration exercises (walk-then-run style), which culminated in successful demonstration of the ability to supply optimized schedules for routine public catalog data collection – then adapt sensor tasking schedules in real-time upon receipt of urgent data collection requests. This paper will provide a

  13. Life sciences payload definition and integration study, task C and D. Volume 2: Payload definition, integration, and planning studies

    Science.gov (United States)

    1973-01-01

    The Life Sciences Payload Definition and Integration Study was composed of four major tasks. Tasks A and B, the laboratory definition phase, were the subject of prior NASA study. The laboratory definition phase included the establishment of research functions, equipment definitions, and conceptual baseline laboratory designs. These baseline laboratories were designated as Maxi-Nom, Mini-30, and Mini-7. The outputs of Tasks A and B were used by the NASA Life Sciences Payload Integration Team to establish guidelines for Tasks C and D, the laboratory integration phase of the study. A brief review of Tasks A and B is presented provide background continuity. The tasks C and D effort is the subject of this report. The Task C effort stressed the integration of the NASA selected laboratory designs with the shuttle sortie module. The Task D effort updated and developed costs that could be used by NASA for preliminary program planning.

  14. Localizing semantic interference from distractor sounds in picture naming: A dual-task study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mädebach, Andreas; Kieseler, Marie-Luise; Jescheniak, Jörg D

    2017-10-13

    In this study we explored the locus of semantic interference in a novel picture-sound interference task in which participants name pictures while ignoring environmental distractor sounds. In a previous study using this task (Mädebach, Wöhner, Kieseler, & Jescheniak, in Journal of Experimental Psychology: Human Perception and Performance, 43, 1629-1646, 2017), we showed that semantically related distractor sounds (e.g., BARKING dog ) interfere with a picture-naming response (e.g., "horse") more strongly than unrelated distractor sounds do (e.g., DRUMMING drum ). In the experiment reported here, we employed the psychological refractory period (PRP) approach to explore the locus of this effect. We combined a geometric form classification task (square vs. circle; Task 1) with the picture-sound interference task (Task 2). The stimulus onset asynchrony (SOA) between the tasks was systematically varied (0 vs. 500 ms). There were three central findings. First, the semantic interference effect from distractor sounds was replicated. Second, picture naming (in Task 2) was slower with the short than with the long task SOA. Third, both effects were additive-that is, the semantic interference effects were of similar magnitude at both task SOAs. This suggests that the interference arises during response selection or later stages, not during early perceptual processing. This finding corroborates the theory that semantic interference from distractor sounds reflects a competitive selection mechanism in word production.

  15. Gasification Studies Task 4 Topical Report, Utah Clean Coal Program

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Whitty, Kevin [Univ. of Utah, Salt Lake City, UT (United States); Fletcher, Thomas [Univ. of Utah, Salt Lake City, UT (United States); Pugmire, Ronald [Univ. of Utah, Salt Lake City, UT (United States); Smith, Philip [Univ. of Utah, Salt Lake City, UT (United States); Sutherland, James [Univ. of Utah, Salt Lake City, UT (United States); Thornock, Jeremy [Univ. of Utah, Salt Lake City, UT (United States); Hunsacker, Isaac [Univ. of Utah, Salt Lake City, UT (United States); Li, Suhui [Univ. of Utah, Salt Lake City, UT (United States); Kelly, Kerry [Univ. of Utah, Salt Lake City, UT (United States); Puntai, Naveen [Univ. of Utah, Salt Lake City, UT (United States); Reid, Charles [Univ. of Utah, Salt Lake City, UT (United States); Schurtz, Randy [Univ. of Utah, Salt Lake City, UT (United States)

    2011-10-01

    A key objective of the Task 4 activities has been to develop simulation tools to support development, troubleshooting and optimization of pressurized entrained-flow coal gasifiers. The overall gasifier models (Subtask 4.1) combine submodels for fluid flow (Subtask 4.2) and heat transfer (Subtask 4.3) with fundamental understanding of the chemical (Subtask 4.4) and physical (Subtask 4.5) processes that take place as coal particles are converted to synthesis gas and slag. However, it is important to be able to compare predictions from the models against data obtained from actual operating coal gasifiers, and Subtask 4.6 aims to provide an accessible, non-proprietary system, which can be operated over a wide range of conditions to provide well-characterized data for model validation.

  16. Policy and programmatic implications of task shifting in Uganda: a case study

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Dambisya Yoswa M

    2012-03-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Uganda has a severe health worker shortage and a high demand for health care services. This study aimed to assess the policy and programmatic implications of task shifting in Uganda. Methods This was a qualitative, descriptive study through 34 key informant interviews and eight (8 focus group discussions, with participants from various levels of the health system. Results Policy makers understood task shifting, but front-line health workers had misconceptions on the meaning and intention(s of task shifting. Examples were cited of task shifting within the Ugandan health system, some formalized (e.g. psychiatric clinical officers, and some informal ones (e.g. nurses inserting IV lines and initiating treatment. There was apparently high acceptance of task shifting in HIV/AIDS service delivery, with involvement of community health workers (CHW and PLWHA in care and support of AIDS patients. There was no written policy or guidelines on task shifting, but the policy environment was reportedly conducive with plans to develop a policy and guidelines on task shifting. Factors favouring task shifting included successful examples of task shifting, proper referral channels, the need for services, scarcity of skills and focused initiatives such as home based management of fever. Barriers to task shifting included reluctance to change, protection of professional turf, professional boundaries and regulations, heavy workload and high disease burden, poor planning, lack of a task shifting champion, lack of guidelines, the name task shifting itself, and unemployed health professionals. There were both positive and negative views on task shifting: the positive ones cast task shifting as one of the solutions to the dual problem of lack of skills and high demand for service, and as something that is already happening; while negative ones saw it as a quick fix intended for the poor, a threat to quality care and likely to compromise the health

  17. A dual-task paradigm for behavioral and neurobiological studies in nonhuman primates.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Watanabe, Kei; Funahashi, Shintaro

    2015-05-15

    The dual-task paradigm is a procedure in which subjects are asked to perform two behavioral tasks concurrently, each of which involves a distinct goal with a unique stimulus-response association. Due to the heavy demand on subject's cognitive abilities, human studies using this paradigm have provided detailed insights regarding how the components of cognitive systems are functionally organized and implemented. Although dual-task paradigms are widely used in human studies, they are seldom used in nonhuman animal studies. We propose a novel dual-task paradigm for monkeys that requires the simultaneous performance of two cognitively demanding component tasks, each of which uses an independent effector for behavioral responses (hand and eyes). We provide a detailed description of an optimal training protocol for this paradigm, which has been lacking in the existing literature. An analysis of behavioral performance showed that the proposed dual-task paradigm (1) was quickly learned by monkeys (less than 40 sessions) with step-by-step training protocols, (2) produced specific behavioral effects, known as dual-task interference in human studies, and (3) achieved rigid and independent control of the effectors for behavioral responses throughout the trial. The proposed dual-task paradigm has a scalable task structure, in that each of the two component tasks can be easily replaced by other tasks, while preserving the overall structure of the paradigm. This paradigm should be useful for investigating executive control that underlies dual-task performance at both the behavioral and neuronal levels. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  18. 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.

  19. Task modulation of disyllabic spoken word recognition in Mandarin Chinese: a unimodal ERP study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Huang, Xianjun; Yang, Jin-Chen; Chang, Ruohan; Guo, Chunyan

    2016-05-16

    Using unimodal auditory tasks of word-matching and meaning-matching, this study investigated how the phonological and semantic processes in Chinese disyllabic spoken word recognition are modulated by top-down mechanism induced by experimental tasks. Both semantic similarity and word-initial phonological similarity between the primes and targets were manipulated. Results showed that at early stage of recognition (~150-250 ms), an enhanced P2 was elicited by the word-initial phonological mismatch in both tasks. In ~300-500 ms, a fronto-central negative component was elicited by word-initial phonological similarities in the word-matching task, while a parietal negativity was elicited by semantically unrelated primes in the meaning-matching task, indicating that both the semantic and phonological processes can be involved in this time window, depending on the task requirements. In the late stage (~500-700 ms), a centro-parietal Late N400 was elicited in both tasks, but with a larger effect in the meaning-matching task than in the word-matching task. This finding suggests that the semantic representation of the spoken words can be activated automatically in the late stage of recognition, even when semantic processing is not required. However, the magnitude of the semantic activation is modulated by task requirements.

  20. Discrepancy of neural response between exogenous and endogenous task switching: an event-related potentials study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Miyajima, Maki; Toyomaki, Atsuhito; Hashimoto, Naoki; Kusumi, Ichiro; Murohashi, Harumitsu; Koyama, Tsukasa

    2012-08-01

    Task switching is a well-known cognitive paradigm to explore task-set reconfiguration processes such as rule shifting. In particular, endogenous task switching is thought to differ qualitatively from stimulus-triggered exogenous task switching. However, no previous study has examined the neural substrate of endogenous task switching. The purpose of the present study is to explore the differences between event-related potential responses to exogenous and endogenous rule switching at cue stimulus. We modified two patterns of cued switching tasks: exogenous (bottom-up) rule switching and endogenous (top-down) rule switching. In each task cue stimulus was configured to induce switching or maintaining rule. In exogenous switching tasks, late positive deflection was larger in the switch rule condition than in the maintain rule condition. However, in endogenous switching tasks late positive deflection was unexpectedly larger in the maintain-rule condition than in the switch-rule condition. These results indicate that exogenous rule switching is explicit stimulus-driven processes, whereas endogenous rule switching is implicitly parallel processes independent of external stimulus.

  1. A study of the use of simulated work task situations in interactive information retrieval evaluations

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Borlund, Pia

    2016-01-01

    Purpose – The purpose of this paper is to report a study of how the test instrument of a simulated work task situation is used in empirical evaluations of interactive information retrieval (IIR) and reported in the research literature. In particular, the author is interested to learn whether....... The paper addresses the need to carefully design and tailor simulated work task situations to suit the test participants in order to obtain the intended authentic and realistic IIR under study. Keywords Interactive information retrieval study, IIR study, Test design, Simulated work task situations, Meta-evaluation...... situations in IIR evaluations. In particular, with respect to the design and creation of realistic simulated work task situations. There is a lack of tailoring of the simulated work task situations to the test participants. Likewise, the requirement to include the test participants’ personal information...

  2. Effectiveness of neuromotor task training for children with developmental coordination disorder : a pilot study

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Schoemaker, M.M.; Niemeijer, A.S.; Reynders, K.; Smits-Engelsman, B.C.

    2003-01-01

    The aim of this pilot study was to evaluate the effectiveness of a Neuromotor Task Training (NTT), recently developed for the treatment of children with Developmental Coordination Disorder (DCD) by pediatric physical therapists in the Netherlands. NTT is a task-oriented treatment program based upon

  3. 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…

  4. 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…

  5. An Experimental Study on the Effects of Different Reading Tasks on L2 Vocabulary Acquisition

    Science.gov (United States)

    Xu, Jianping

    2009-01-01

    This empirical study was undertaken to test the Involvement Load Hypothesis (Laufer and Hulstijn, 2001) by examining the impact of three tasks on vocabulary acquisition. It was designed to test and develop the involvement load hypothesis by examining the impact of different reading tasks on the L2 vocabulary acquisition. The results show that…

  6. Facilitating an L2 Book Club: A Conversation-Analytic Study of Task Management

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ro, Eunseok

    2018-01-01

    This study employs conversation analysis to examine a facilitator's interactional practices in the post-expansion phase of students' presentations in the context of a book club for second language learning. The analysis shows how the facilitator establishes intersubjectivity with regard to the ongoing task and manages students' task performance.…

  7. Task-Based Language Learning and Teaching: An Action-Research Study

    Science.gov (United States)

    Calvert, Megan; Sheen, Younghee

    2015-01-01

    The creation, implementation, and evaluation of language learning tasks remain a challenge for many teachers, especially those with limited experience with using tasks in their teaching. This action-research study reports on one teacher's experience of developing, implementing, critically reflecting on, and modifying a language learning task…

  8. Studying different tasks of implicit learning across multiple test sessions conducted on the web

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Werner eSævland

    2016-06-01

    Full Text Available Implicit learning is usually studied through individual performance on a single task, with the most common tasks being Serial Reaction Time task (SRT; Nissen and Bullemer, 1987, Dynamic System Control task (DSC; (Berry and Broadbent, 1984 and artificial Grammar Learning task (AGL; (Reber, 1967. Few attempts have been made to compare performance across different implicit learning tasks within the same experiment. The current experiment was designed study the relationship between performance on the DSC Sugar factory task (Berry and Broadbent, 1984 and the Alternating Serial Reaction Time task (ASRT; (Howard and Howard, 1997. We also addressed another limitation to traditional implicit learning experiments, namely that implicit learning is usually studied in laboratory settings over a restricted time span lasting for less than an hour (Berry and Broadbent, 1984; Nissen and Bullemer, 1987; Reber, 1967. In everyday situations, implicit learning is assumed to involve a gradual accumulation of knowledge across several learning episodes over a larger time span (Norman and Price, 2012. One way to increase the ecological validity of implicit learning experiments could be to present the learning material repeatedly across shorter experimental sessions (Howard and Howard, 1997; Cleeremans and McClelland, 1991. This can most easily be done by using a web-based setup that participants can access from home. We therefore created an online web-based system for measuring implicit learning that could be administered in either single or multiple sessions. Participants (n = 66 were assigned to either a single-session or a multi-session condition. Learning and the degree of conscious awareness of the learned regularities was compared across condition (single vs. multiple sessions and tasks (DSC vs. ASRT. Results showed that learning on the two tasks was not related. However, participants in the multiple sessions condition did show greater improvements in reaction

  9. 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.

  10. Daylight case study building. A working document of Task 21. Daylight in buildings

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Kristensen, P E

    1997-05-01

    This report describes 16 buildings, that have been selected as Task 21 case studies. Totally 15 buildings will be monitored and described according to the procedures developed in Task 21. One case study building is in design stage, the new ISE Headquarters in Freiburg, and this project has been selected as a case study on building design. The monitoring programme for the buildings runs through 1997 until mid 1998. The present document serves as a basic document describing the case studies, until the projects will be described in more detail, including monitoring results, towards the end of the Task. (au)

  11. Operationally efficient propulsion system study (OEPSS) data book. Volume 6; Space Transfer Propulsion Operational Efficiency Study Task of OEPSS

    Science.gov (United States)

    Harmon, Timothy J.

    1992-01-01

    This document is the final report for the Space Transfer Propulsion Operational Efficiency Study Task of the Operationally Efficient Propulsion System Study (OEPSS) conducted by the Rocketdyne Division of Rockwell International. This Study task studied, evaluated and identified design concepts and technologies which minimized launch and in-space operations and optimized in-space vehicle propulsion system operability.

  12. The effect of task complexity and task conditions on foreign language development and performance: three empirical studies

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Sercu, L.; de Wachter, L.; Peters, E.; Kuiken, F.; Vedder, I.

    2006-01-01

    It has been argued that tasks constitute a valid alternative unit to sequence the language learning process, as opposed to linguistically defined syllabuses. Implementing this claim presupposes that it is possible to access the cognitive and linguistic demands of tasks, so that they can be sequenced

  13. Study of EEG during Sternberg Tasks with Different Direction of Arrangement for Letters

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kamihoriuchi, Kenji; Nuruki, Atsuo; Matae, Tadashi; Kurono, Asutsugu; Yunokuchi, Kazutomo

    In previous study, we recorded electroencephalogram (EEG) of patients with dementia and healthy subjects during Sternberg task. But, only one presentation method of Sternberg task was considered in previous study. Therefore, we examined whether the EEG was different in two different presentation methods wrote letters horizontally and wrote letters vertically in this study. We recorded EEG of six healthy subjects during Sternberg task using two different presentation methods. The result was not different in EEG topography of all subjects. In all subjects, correct rate increased in case of vertically arranged letters.

  14. Stress at school? A Qualitative Study on Illegitimate Tasks during Teacher Training

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Stefanie Faupel

    2016-09-01

    Full Text Available What do I expect when stating that I am going to be a teacher? Social roles, including professional roles, often become part of people’s identity and thus, of the self. As people typically strive for maintaining a positive sense of self, threats to one’s role identity are likely to induce stress. In line with these considerations, Semmer et al. recently (e.g., 2007, 2015 introduced illegitimate tasks as a new concept of stressors. Illegitimate tasks, which are defined as unnecessary or unreasonable tasks, threaten the self because they signal a lack of appreciation regarding one’s professional role. Teacher training is a phase of role transition in which the occurrence of illegitimate tasks becomes likely. A holistic understanding of these tasks, however, has been missing up to now. Is there already a professional role identity during teacher training that is vulnerable to threats like the illegitimacy of tasks? What are typical illegitimate tasks in the context of teacher training? In order to close this research gap, 39 situations taken from 16 interviews with teaching trainees were analyzed in the present study on the basis of qualitative content analysis. Seminars and standing in to hold lessons for other teachers were identified as most prevalent illegitimate tasks. More specifically, unnecessary tasks could be classified as sub challenging, inefficient and lacking in organization (e.g., writing reports about workshops no one will ever read. Unreasonable tasks appeared overextending, fell outside responsibility, and lacked supervisory support. Training interventions focusing upon task design and supervisory behavior are suggested for improvement.

  15. Stress at School? A Qualitative Study on Illegitimate Tasks during Teacher Training.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Faupel, Stefanie; Otto, Kathleen; Krug, Henning; Kottwitz, Maria U

    2016-01-01

    What do I expect when stating that "I am going to be a teacher"? Social roles, including professional roles, often become part of people's identity and thus, of the self. As people typically strive for maintaining a positive sense of self, threats to one's role identity are likely to induce stress. In line with these considerations, Semmer et al. recently (e.g., Semmer et al., 2007, 2015) introduced "illegitimate tasks" as a new concept of stressors. Illegitimate tasks, which are defined as unnecessary or unreasonable tasks, threaten the self because they signal a lack of appreciation regarding one's professional role. Teacher training is a phase of role transition in which the occurrence of illegitimate tasks becomes likely. A holistic understanding of these tasks, however, has been missing up to now. Is there already a professional role identity during teacher training that is vulnerable to threats like the illegitimacy of tasks? What are typical illegitimate tasks in the context of teacher training? In order to close this research gap, 39 situations taken from 16 interviews with teaching trainees were analyzed in the present study on the basis of qualitative content analysis. Seminars and standing in to hold lessons for other teachers were identified as most prevalent illegitimate tasks. More specifically, unnecessary tasks could be classified as sub challenging, inefficient and lacking in organization (e.g., writing reports about workshops no one will ever read). Unreasonable tasks appeared overextending, fell outside responsibility, and lacked supervisory support. Training interventions focusing upon task design and supervisory behavior are suggested for improvement.

  16. Incorporating Language Structure in a Communicative Task: An Analysis of the Language Component of a Communicative Task in the LINC Home Study Program

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lenchuk, Iryna

    2014-01-01

    The purpose of this article is to analyze a task included in the LINC Home Study (LHS) program. LHS is a federally funded distance education program offered to newcomers to Canada who are unable to attend regular LINC classes. A task, in which a language structure (a gerund) is chosen and analyzed, was selected from one instructional module of LHS…

  17. Studying Language Learning Opportunities Afforded by a Collaborative CALL Task

    Science.gov (United States)

    Leahy, Christine

    2016-01-01

    This research study explores the learning potential of a computer-assisted language learning (CALL) activity. Research suggests that the dual emphasis on content development and language accuracy, as well as the complexity of L2 production in natural settings, can potentially create cognitive overload. This study poses the question whether, and…

  18. Nuclear power plant control room task analysis. Pilot study for pressurized water reactors

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Barks, D.B.; Kozinsky, E.J.; Eckel, S.

    1982-05-01

    The purposes of this nuclear plant task analysis pilot study: to demonstrate the use of task analysis techniques on selected abnormal or emergency operation events in a nuclear power plant; to evaluate the use of simulator data obtained from an automated Performance Measurement System to supplement and validate data obtained by traditional task analysis methods; and to demonstrate sample applications of task analysis data to address questions pertinent to nuclear power plant operational safety: control room layout, staffing and training requirements, operating procedures, interpersonal communications, and job performance aids. Five data sources were investigated to provide information for a task analysis. These sources were (1) written operating procedures (event-based); (2) interviews with subject matter experts (the control room operators); (3) videotapes of the control room operators (senior reactor operators and reactor operators) while responding to each event in a simulator; (4) walk-/talk-throughs conducted by control room operators for each event; and (5) simulator data from the PMS

  19. Task 28: Web Accessible APIs in the Cloud Trade Study

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gallagher, James; Habermann, Ted; Jelenak, Aleksandar; Lee, Joe; Potter, Nathan; Yang, Muqun

    2017-01-01

    This study explored three candidate architectures for serving NASA Earth Science Hierarchical Data Format Version 5 (HDF5) data via Hyrax running on Amazon Web Services (AWS). We studied the cost and performance for each architecture using several representative Use-Cases. The objectives of the project are: Conduct a trade study to identify one or more high performance integrated solutions for storing and retrieving NASA HDF5 and Network Common Data Format Version 4 (netCDF4) data in a cloud (web object store) environment. The target environment is Amazon Web Services (AWS) Simple Storage Service (S3).Conduct needed level of software development to properly evaluate solutions in the trade study and to obtain required benchmarking metrics for input into government decision of potential follow-on prototyping. Develop a cloud cost model for the preferred data storage solution (or solutions) that accounts for different granulation and aggregation schemes as well as cost and performance trades.

  20. Report on task I: fire protection system study

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Bernard, E.A.; Cano, G.L.

    1977-02-01

    This study (1) evaluates, on a comparative basis, the national and international regulatory and insurance standards that serve as guidance for fire protection within the nuclear power industry; (2) analyzes the recommendations contained in the major reports on the Browns Ferry Fire; (3) proposes quantitative safety goals and evaluation methods for Nuclear Power Plant Fire Protection Systems (NPPFPS); (4) identifies potential improvements that may be incorporated into NPPFPS; and (5) recommends a plan of action for continuation of the fire protections systems study

  1. Studying habit acquisition with an avoidance learning task

    OpenAIRE

    Flores, Amanda; Cobos-Cano, Pedro Luis; López-Gutiérrez, Francisco José; Andrades, Ainhoa; Vervliet, Bram

    2015-01-01

    The study of habit acquisition and expression is considered relevant to improve our understanding of mental disorders characterised by the presence of compulsive or incontrollable behaviours. Most studies on habit learning, both in animals and in humans, are based on positive reinforcement paradigms. However, the compulsions and habits involved in some mental disorders may be better understood as avoidance behaviours, which involve some peculiarities such as anxiety states that have been show...

  2. Using the Hand Laterality Judgement Task to Assess Motor Imagery: A Study of Practice Effects in Repeated Measurements

    Science.gov (United States)

    Boonstra, Anne M.; de Vries, Sjoerd J.; Veenstra, Evelien; Tepper, Marga; Feenstra, Wya; Otten, Egbert

    2012-01-01

    The aim of this study was to determine whether there is a practice effect on the Hand Laterality Judgement Task (HLJT). The HLJT task is a mental rotation task that can be used to assess motor imagery ability in stroke patients. Thirty-three healthy individuals performed the HLJT and two control tasks twice at a 3-week interval. Differences in the…

  3. Informatization tools (means of study effectiveness checking based on hierarchy system of tasks

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Сергей Викторович Криволапов

    2010-09-01

    Full Text Available Study effectiveness checking system, based on tasks hierarchy system is considered in this article. Introduced performance score model, can not only helps along time saving and teacher's work facilitation but gives more objective appraisal of student's knowledge.

  4. Violence against Teachers: Case Studies from the APA Task Force

    Science.gov (United States)

    Reddy, Linda A.; Espelage, Dorothy; McMahon, Susan D.; Anderman, Eric M.; Lane, Kathleen Lynne; Brown, Veda Evanell; Reynolds, Cecil R.; Jones, Abraham; Kanrich, Jaclyn

    2013-01-01

    Violence directed toward teachers has been understudied despite significant media and empirical investigation on school violence, such as student-to-student victimization and bullying. To date, there are relatively few published studies scattered across many countries. To address this void, the American Psychological Association, in collaboration…

  5. 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)

  6. A study of pilot modeling in multi-controller tasks

    Science.gov (United States)

    Whitbeck, R. F.; Knight, J. R.

    1972-01-01

    A modeling approach, which utilizes a matrix of transfer functions to describe the human pilot in multiple input, multiple output control situations, is studied. The approach used was to extend a well established scalar Wiener-Hopf minimization technique to the matrix case and then study, via a series of experiments, the data requirements when only finite record lengths are available. One of these experiments was a two-controller roll tracking experiment designed to force the pilot to use rudder in order to coordinate and reduce the effects of aileron yaw. One model was computed for the case where the signals used to generate the spectral matrix are error and bank angle while another model was computed for the case where error and yaw angle are the inputs. Several anomalies were observed to be present in the experimental data. These are defined by the descriptive terms roll up, break up, and roll down. Due to these algorithm induced anomalies, the frequency band over which reliable estimates of power spectra can be achieved is considerably less than predicted by the sampling theorem.

  7. Pilot-model analysis and simulation study of effect of control task desired control response

    Science.gov (United States)

    Adams, J. J.; Gera, J.; Jaudon, J. B.

    1978-01-01

    A pilot model analysis was performed that relates pilot control compensation, pilot aircraft system response, and aircraft response characteristics for longitudinal control. The results show that a higher aircraft short period frequency is required to achieve superior pilot aircraft system response in an altitude control task than is required in an attitude control task. These results were confirmed by a simulation study of target tracking. It was concluded that the pilot model analysis provides a theoretical basis for determining the effect of control task on pilot opinions.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2016-01-01

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

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2016-01-01

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

  10. Effects of dual-task training on balance and executive functions in Parkinson's disease: a pilot study

    OpenAIRE

    Ângela Fernandes; Nuno Rocha; Rubim Santos; João Manuel R. S. Tavares

    2015-01-01

    The aim of this study was to analyze the efficacy of cognitive-motor dual-task training compared with single-task training on balance and executive functions in individuals with Parkinson's disease. Fifteen subjects, aged between 39 and 75 years old, were randomly assigned to the dual-task training group (n = 8) and single-task training group (n = 7). The training was run twice a week for 6 weeks. The single-task group received balance training and the dual-task group performed cognitive task...

  11. 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

  12. Risk-based decision making: The East Fork Poplar Creek case study

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Moore, D.R.J.; Sample, B.E.; Suter, G.W.; Parkhurst, B.R.; Teed, R.S.

    1999-12-01

    A probabilistic risk assessment revealed that methylmercury released from the US Department of Energy (DOE) Y-12 weapons facility at Oak Ridge, Tennessee, USA, poses moderate risks to mink and kingfishers residing near the receiving waters of East Fork Poplar Creek. Polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs) released from this facility pose severe risks to mink but little risk to kingfishers. The objective of this study was to use a risk-based decision-making approach to select remedial cleanup levels for each of these contaminants. The authors conducted Monte Carlo simulations to estimate total daily intakes of each contaminant by mink (mercury and PCBs) and kingfishers (PCBs only) for a range of exposure-reduction scenarios. The resulting exposure distributions were then integrated with their respective dose-response curves to estimate postremediation risks. The results indicated that total mercury levels in surface water would need to be reduced from current levels (mean = 0.225 {micro}g/L) to 0.03 to 0.05 {micro}g/L to reduce risks to very low levels (<5% probability of {ge}20% mortality) for both mink and kingfishers. If interested parties define acceptable risk as, for example, a 20% probability of {gt} 10% mortality, then mercury levels would need to be reduced to 0.14 {micro}g/L. The PCBs analysis indicated that reducing water-borne exposures would produce only a modest reduction in risk to mink because much of the current exposure is through terrestrial exposure pathways.

  13. Priming in implicit memory tasks: prior study causes enhanced discriminability, not only bias.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zeelenberg, René; Wagenmakers, Eric-Jan M; Raaijmakers, Jeroen G W

    2002-03-01

    R. Ratcliff and G. McKoon (1995, 1996, 1997; R. Ratcliff, D. Allbritton, & G. McKoon, 1997) have argued that repetition priming effects are solely due to bias. They showed that prior study of the target resulted in a benefit in a later implicit memory task. However, prior study of a stimulus similar to the target resulted in a cost. The present study, using a 2-alternative forced-choice procedure, investigated the effect of prior study in an unbiased condition: Both alternatives were studied prior to their presentation in an implicit memory task. Contrary to a pure bias interpretation of priming, consistent evidence was obtained in 3 implicit memory tasks (word fragment completion, auditory word identification, and picture identification) that performance was better when both alternatives were studied than when neither alternative was studied. These results show that prior study results in enhanced discriminability, not only bias.

  14. Functional MR study of a motor task and the Tower of London task at 1.0 T

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Boghi, A.; Rampado, O.; Ropolo, R.; Bergui, M.; Coriasco, M.; Bradac, G.B.; Avidano, F.; Manzone, C.; Mortara, P.; Orsi, L.

    2006-01-01

    The use of functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) for clinical applications and basic neuroscience is constantly increasing. The discussion about minimum performance requirement for a correct implementation of fMRI is still open, and one of the critical points is the magnetic field strength. We tested the feasibility of fMRI at 1.0 T during motor and cognitive tasks. Fourteen healthy subjects were scanned during a motor task and 12 while performing the Tower of London task. In the activated areas, the percentage signal change due to BOLD (blood oxygenation level dependent) contrast was analysed. To check basic image quality of the acquisition system we measured quality indices in a temporal series of images of a phantom. Motor and cognitive brain activations matched previous results obtained at higher field strengths. The mean percentage change over subjects in the motor task was in the range 1.3-2.6% for the primary motor area and 0.8-6.7% for the cerebellum. In the cognitive task, the mean percentage change over subjects was 0.7-1.2% for a frontal area and 0.6-2.8% for a parietal area. The percentage noise of the phantom temporal series was less than 0.4%. Percentage changes and signal to noise ratio, although lower than that obtained with high-field systems, allowed activation maps to be obtained in all subjects. (orig.)

  15. Identifying objective criterion to determine a complicated task – A comparative study

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Park, Jinkyun; Jung, Wondea

    2015-01-01

    Highlights: • Reliable estimation on the likelihood of human error is very critical. • Still there is no clear and objective criterion on a complicated task. • Subjective difficulty scores rated by 75 high speed train drivers are collected. • Collected difficulty scores are compared with the associated TACOM scores. • Criteria for task complexity level seem to be determined by the TACOM measure. - Abstract: A reliable estimation on the likelihood of human error is very critical for evaluating the safety of a large process control system such as NPPs (Nuclear Power Plants). In this regard, one of the determinants is to decide the level of an important PSF (Performance Shaping Factor) through a clear and objective manner along with the context of a given task. Unfortunately, it seems that there are no such decision criteria for certain PSFs including the complexity of a task. Therefore, the feasibility of the TACOM (Task Complexity) measure in providing objective criteria that are helpful for distinguishing the level of a task complexity is investigated in this study. To this end, subjective difficulty scores rated by 75 high-speed train drivers are collected for 38 tasks. After that, subjective difficulty scores are compared with the associated TACOM scores being quantified based on these tasks. As a result, it is observed that there is a significant correlation between subjective difficulty scores rated by high-speed train drivers and the associated TACOM scores. Accordingly, it is promising to expect that the TACOM measure can be used as an objective tool to identify the level of a task complexity in terms of an HRA (Human Reliability Analysis)

  16. Comparison of cortical activation in an upper limb added-purpose task versus a single-purpose task: a near-infrared spectroscopy study

    OpenAIRE

    Huang, Fubiao; Hirano, Daisuke; Shi, Yun; Taniguchi, Takamichi

    2015-01-01

    [Purpose] The purpose of this study was to compare prefrontal activations during an added-purpose task with those during a single-purpose task using functional near-infrared spectroscopy. [Subjects] Six healthy right-handed adults were included in this study. [Methods] The participants were instructed to complete both added-purpose and single-purpose activities separately with each hand. The near-infrared spectroscopy probes were placed on the scalp overlying the prefrontal cortex, according ...

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    Marchese, Roberta; Bove, Marco; Abbruzzese, Giovanni

    2003-06-01

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

  18. Work motivation, task delegation and job satisfaction of general practice staff: a cross-sectional study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Riisgaard, Helle; Søndergaard, Jens; Munch, Maria; Le, Jette V; Ledderer, Loni; Pedersen, Line B; Nexøe, Jørgen

    2017-04-01

    Recent research has shown that a high degree of task delegation is associated with the practise staff's overall job satisfaction, and this association is important to explore since job satisfaction is related to medical as well as patient-perceived quality of care. This study aimed: (1) to investigate associations between degrees of task delegation in the management of chronic disease in general practice, with chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) as a case and the staff's work motivation, (2) to investigate associations between the work motivation of the staff and their job satisfaction. The study was based on a questionnaire to which 621 members of the practice staff responded. The questionnaire consisted of a part concerning degree of task delegation in the management of COPD in their respective practice and another part being about their job satisfaction and motivation to work. In the first analysis, we found that 'maximal degree' of task delegation was significantly associated with the staff perceiving themselves to have a large degree of variation in tasks, odds ratio (OR) = 4.26, confidence interval (CI) = 1.09, 16.62. In the second analysis, we found that this perceived large degree of variation in tasks was significantly associated with their overall job satisfaction, OR = 2.81, confidence interval = 1.71, 4.61. The results suggest that general practitioners could delegate highly complex tasks in the management of COPD to their staff without influencing the staff's work motivation, and thereby their job satisfaction, negatively, as long as they ensure sufficient variation in the tasks. © The Author 2017. Published by Oxford University Press.

  19. 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...

  20. 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.

  1. Negative emotion modulates prefrontal cortex activity during a working memory task: A NIRS study

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sachiyo eOzawa

    2014-02-01

    Full Text Available This study investigated the neural processing underlying the cognitive control of emotions induced by the presentation of task-irrelevant emotional pictures before a working memory task. Previous studies have suggested that the cognitive control of emotion involves the prefrontal regions. Therefore, we measured the hemodynamic responses that occurred in the prefrontal region with a 16-channel near-infrared spectroscopy (NIRS system. In our experiment, participants observed two negative or two neutral pictures in succession immediately before a 1-back or 3-back task. Pictures were selected from the International Affective Picture System. We measured the changes in the concentration of oxygenated hemoglobin (oxyHb during picture presentation and during the n-back task. The emotional valence of the picture affected the oxyHb changes in anterior parts of the medial prefrontal cortex (located in the left and right superior frontal gyrus and left inferior frontal gyrus during the n-back task; the oxyHb changes during the task were significantly greater following negative rather than neutral stimulation. As indicated in a number of previous studies, and the time courses of the oxyHb changes in our study, activation in these locations is possibly led by cognitive control of emotion, though we cannot deny it may simply be emotional responses. There were no effects of emotion on oxyHb changes during picture presentation or on n-back task performance. Although further studies are necessary to confirm this interpretation, our findings suggest that NIRS can be used to investigate neural processing during emotional control.

  2. Quantitative assessment of airborne exposures generated during common cleaning tasks: a pilot study

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Perry Melissa J

    2010-11-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background A growing body of epidemiologic evidence suggests an association between exposure to cleaning products with asthma and other respiratory disorders. Thus far, these studies have conducted only limited quantitative exposure assessments. Exposures from cleaning products are difficult to measure because they are complex mixtures of chemicals with a range of physicochemical properties, thus requiring multiple measurement techniques. We conducted a pilot exposure assessment study to identify methods for assessing short term, task-based airborne exposures and to quantitatively evaluate airborne exposures associated with cleaning tasks simulated under controlled work environment conditions. Methods Sink, mirror, and toilet bowl cleaning tasks were simulated in a large ventilated bathroom and a small unventilated bathroom using a general purpose, a glass, and a bathroom cleaner. All tasks were performed for 10 minutes. Airborne total volatile organic compounds (TVOC generated during the tasks were measured using a direct reading instrument (DRI with a photo ionization detector. Volatile organic ingredients of the cleaning mixtures were assessed utilizing an integrated sampling and analytic method, EPA TO-17. Ammonia air concentrations were also measured with an electrochemical sensor embedded in the DRI. Results Average TVOC concentrations calculated for 10 minute tasks ranged 0.02 - 6.49 ppm and the highest peak concentrations observed ranged 0.14-11 ppm. TVOC time concentration profiles indicated that exposures above background level remained present for about 20 minutes after cessation of the tasks. Among several targeted VOC compounds from cleaning mixtures, only 2-BE was detectable with the EPA method. The ten minute average 2- BE concentrations ranged 0.30 -21 ppm between tasks. The DRI underestimated 2-BE exposures compared to the results from the integrated method. The highest concentration of ammonia of 2.8 ppm occurred

  3. Identification of Swallowing Tasks from a Modified Barium Swallow Study That Optimize the Detection of Physiological Impairment

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hazelwood, R. Jordan; Armeson, Kent E.; Hill, Elizabeth G.; Bonilha, Heather Shaw; Martin-Harris, Bonnie

    2017-01-01

    Purpose: The purpose of this study was to identify which swallowing task(s) yielded the worst performance during a standardized modified barium swallow study (MBSS) in order to optimize the detection of swallowing impairment. Method: This secondary data analysis of adult MBSSs estimated the probability of each swallowing task yielding the derived…

  4. Qualitative Task Analysis to Enhance Sports Characterization: A Surfing Case Study

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Moreira Miguel

    2014-10-01

    Full Text Available The aim of this study was to develop a Matrix of Analysis for Sports Tasks (MAST, regardless of the sports activity, based on practice classification and task analysis. Being this a qualitative research our main question was: in assessing sports’ structure is it possible to make the characterization of any discipline through context and individuals’ behaviours? The sample was within a surf discipline in a competition flowing having 5 of the top 16 Portuguese surfers training together. Based on a qualitative method, studying the surf as the main activity was an interpretative study case. The MAST was applied in four phases: taxonomy; tasks and context description; task analysis; teaching and performance strategies. Its application allowed the activities’ characterization through the observation, surfer’s opinions and bibliographical support. The triangulation of the data was used as an information data treatment. The elements were classified by the challenges proposed to the practitioners and the taxonomy was constituted by the sport activities, group, modality and discipline. Surf is a discipline of surfing which is a sliding sport modality, therefore, a nature sport. In the context description, we had the wave’s components and constraints and the surfboards’ qualities. Through task analysis we obtained a taxonomy of surf manoeuvres. The structural and functional analysis allowed finding solutions for learning of surf techniques with trampoline and skateboards because these fit in sliding sports. MAST makes possible the development of strategies that benefit teaching and performance intervention

  5. Qualitative Task Analysis to Enhance Sports Characterization: A Surfing Case Study

    Science.gov (United States)

    Moreira, Miguel; Peixoto, César

    2014-01-01

    The aim of this study was to develop a Matrix of Analysis for Sports Tasks (MAST), regardless of the sports activity, based on practice classification and task analysis. Being this a qualitative research our main question was: in assessing sports’ structure is it possible to make the characterization of any discipline through context and individuals’ behaviours? The sample was within a surf discipline in a competition flowing having 5 of the top 16 Portuguese surfers training together. Based on a qualitative method, studying the surf as the main activity was an interpretative study case. The MAST was applied in four phases: taxonomy; tasks and context description; task analysis; teaching and performance strategies. Its application allowed the activities’ characterization through the observation, surfer’s opinions and bibliographical support. The triangulation of the data was used as an information data treatment. The elements were classified by the challenges proposed to the practitioners and the taxonomy was constituted by the sport activities, group, modality and discipline. Surf is a discipline of surfing which is a sliding sport modality, therefore, a nature sport. In the context description, we had the wave’s components and constraints and the surfboards’ qualities. Through task analysis we obtained a taxonomy of surf manoeuvres. The structural and functional analysis allowed finding solutions for learning of surf techniques with trampoline and skateboards because these fit in sliding sports. MAST makes possible the development of strategies that benefit teaching and performance intervention. PMID:25414757

  6. The effects of study task on prestimulus subsequent memory effects in the hippocampus.

    Science.gov (United States)

    de Chastelaine, Marianne; Rugg, Michael D

    2015-11-01

    Functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) was employed to examine the effects of a study task manipulation on pre-stimulus activity in the hippocampus predictive of later successful recollection. Eighteen young participants were scanned while making either animacy or syllable judgments on visually presented study words. Cues presented before each word denoted which judgment should be made. Following the study phase, a surprise recognition memory test was administered in which each test item had to be endorsed as "Remembered," "Known," or "New." As expected, "deep" animacy judgments led to better memory for study items than did "shallow" syllable judgments. In both study tasks, pre-stimulus subsequent recollection effects were evident in the interval between the cue and the study item in bilateral anterior hippocampus. However, the direction of the effects differed according to the study task: whereas pre-stimulus hippocampal activity on animacy trials was greater for later recollected items than items judged old on the basis of familiarity (replicating prior findings), these effects reversed for syllable trials. We propose that the direction of pre-stimulus hippocampal subsequent memory effects depends on whether an optimal pre-stimulus task set facilitates study processing that is conducive or unconducive to the formation of contextually rich episodic memories. © 2015 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  7. Team turnover and task conflict: A longitudinal study on the moderating effects of collective experience

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Kuypers, A.P.A.; Günter, H.; van Emmerik, I.H.

    2015-01-01

    Team turnover can be harmful to a team in many ways. This study examined whether a team’s collective experience (team organizational tenure) attenuates the association between team turnover and task conflict changes. Differing from prior research, our study used a longitudinal design to assess the

  8. A Case Study: Writing a Spanish Dictionary as a Collaborative Task among Beginner Students

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lopez, Nuria

    2016-01-01

    This article reports a small-scale study carried out in a beginners' Spanish class of second year undergraduate students. The purpose of the study was to investigate the effectiveness of a vocabulary task in terms of its impact on vocabulary acquisition, the learners' approach to vocabulary learning and their motivation and engagement. The task…

  9. Anticipation of a mentally effortful task recruits Dorsolateral Prefrontal Cortex: An fNIRS validation study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vassena, Eliana; Gerrits, Robin; Demanet, Jelle; Verguts, Tom; Siugzdaite, Roma

    2018-04-26

    Preparing for a mentally demanding task calls upon cognitive and motivational resources. The underlying neural implementation of these mechanisms is receiving growing attention because of its implications for professional, social, and medical contexts. While several fMRI studies converge in assigning a crucial role to a cortico-subcortical network including Anterior Cigulate Cortex (ACC) and striatum, the involvement of Dorsolateral Prefrontal Cortex (DLPFC) during mental effort anticipation has yet to be replicated. This study was designed to target DLPFC contribution to anticipation of a difficult task using functional Near Infrared Spectroscopy (fNIRS), as a more cost-effective tool measuring cortical hemodynamics. We adapted a validated mental effort task, where participants performed easy and difficult mental calculation, and measured DLPFC activity during the anticipation phase. As hypothesized, DLPFC activity increased during anticipation of a hard task as compared to an easy task. Besides replicating previous fMRI work, these results establish fNIRS as an effective tool to investigate cortical contributions to anticipation of effortful behavior. This is especially useful if one requires testing large samples (e.g., to target individual differences), populations with contraindication for functional MRI (e.g., infants or patients with metal implants), or subjects in more naturalistic environments (e.g., work or sport). Copyright © 2018 The Authors. Published by Elsevier Ltd.. All rights reserved.

  10. Neural Correlates of a Perspective-taking Task Using in a Realistic Three-dimmensional Environment Based Task: A Pilot Functional Magnetic Resonance Imaging Study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Agarwal, Sri Mahavir; Shivakumar, Venkataram; Kalmady, Sunil V; Danivas, Vijay; Amaresha, Anekal C; Bose, Anushree; Narayanaswamy, Janardhanan C; Amorim, Michel-Ange; Venkatasubramanian, Ganesan

    2017-08-31

    Perspective-taking ability is an essential spatial faculty that is of much interest in both health and neuropsychiatric disorders. There is limited data on the neural correlates of perspective taking in the context of a realistic three-dimensional environment. We report the results of a pilot study exploring the same in eight healthy volunteers. Subjects underwent two runs of an experiment in a 3 Tesla magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) involving alternate blocks of a first-person perspective based allocentric object location memory task (OLMT), a third-person perspective based egocentric visual perspective taking task (VPRT), and a table task (TT) that served as a control. Difference in blood oxygen level dependant response during task performance was analyzed using Statistical Parametric Mapping software, version 12. Activations were considered significant if they survived family-wise error correction at the cluster level using a height threshold of p <0.001, uncorrected at the voxel level. A significant difference in accuracy and reaction time based on task type was found. Subjects had significantly lower accuracy in VPRT compared to TT. Accuracy in the two active tasks was not significantly different. Subjects took significantly longer in the VPRT in comparison to TT. Reaction time in the two active tasks was not significantly different. Functional MRI revealed significantly higher activation in the bilateral visual cortex and left temporoparietal junction (TPJ) in VPRT compared to OLMT. The results underscore the importance of TPJ in egocentric manipulation in healthy controls in the context of reality-based spatial tasks.

  11. Role of the Frontal Cortex in Standing Postural Sway Tasks While Dual-Tasking: A Functional Near-Infrared Spectroscopy Study Examining Working Memory Capacity

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Hiroyuki Fujita

    2016-01-01

    Full Text Available Posture control during a dual-task involves changing the distribution of attention resources between the cognitive and motor tasks and involves the frontal cortex working memory (WM. The present study aimed to better understand the impact of frontal lobe activity and WM capacity in postural control during a dual-task. High and low WM-span groups were compared using their reading span test scores. High and low WM capacity were compared based on cognitive and balance performance and hemoglobin oxygenation (oxyHb levels during standing during single (S-S, standing during dual (S-D, one leg standing during single (O-S, and one leg standing during dual (O-D tasks. For sway pass length, significant difference in only the O-D task was observed between both groups. oxyHb levels were markedly increased in the right dorsolateral prefrontal cortex and supplementary motor area in the high-span group during a dual-task. Therefore, WM capacity influenced the allocation of attentional resources and motor performance.

  12. Does the radiologically isolated syndrome exist? A dual-task cost pilot study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dattola, Vincenzo; Logiudice, Anna Lisa; Bonanno, Lilla; Famà, Fausto; Milardi, Demetrio; Chillemi, Gaetana; D'Aleo, Giangaetano; Marino, Silvia; Calabrò, Rocco Salvatore; Russo, Margherita

    2017-11-01

    Simultaneous performance of motor and cognitive tasks may compete for common brain network resources in aging or patients with some neurological diseases, suggesting the occurrence of a cognitive-motor interference. While this phenomenon has been well described for multiple sclerosis (MS) patients, it never has been tested on asymptomatic subject with magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) findings suggestive of demyelinating disease (i.e., radiologically isolated syndrome: RIS). In this pilot study, 10 RIS subjects and 10 sex/age-matched healthy controls were tested by means of static posturography under eyes opened (single-task trial) and while performing two different cognitive tasks (semantic modified word list generation for first dual-task trial and phonemic semantic modified word list generation for second dual-task trial), to estimate the dual-task cost (DTC) of standing balance. In our sample, under cognitive interference (without any substantial differences between semantic and phonemic modified word list generation), the RIS group showed significance differences in CoP (center of pressure) total sway area, ellipse eccentricity, CoP sway path length, CoP median sway velocity along the AP (anteroposterior) axis and along the ML (mediolateral) axis, reflecting a higher negative DTC respect to healthy subjects (which have simply shown a statistical trend, failing to reach a significance, in some trials). The phenomenon of cognitive-motor interference might be unmasked by a dual-task posturography in RIS subjects, too. We hypothesize that this approach could be useful to early reveal the presence of a demyelinating disease and to reach a MS diagnosis in subjects otherwise classified as RIS.

  13. Using the Hand Laterality Judgement Task to assess motor imagery : a study of practice effects in repeated measurements

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Boonstra, Anne M.; de Vries, Sjoerd J.; Veenstra, Evelien; Tepper, Marga; Feenstra, Wya; Otten, Egbert

    The aim of this study was to determine whether there is a practice effect on the Hand Laterality Judgement Task (HLJT). The HLJT task is a mental rotation task that can be used to assess motor imagery ability in stroke patients. Thirty-three healthy individuals performed the HLJT and two control

  14. Task-Based Language Teaching for Beginner-Level Learners of L2 French: An Exploratory Study

    Science.gov (United States)

    Erlam, Rosemary; Ellis, Rod

    2018-01-01

    This study investigated the effect of input-based tasks on the acquisition of vocabulary and grammar by beginner-level learners of L2 French and reported the introduction of task-based teaching as an innovation in a state secondary school. The experimental group (n = 19) completed a series of focused input-based language tasks, taught by their…

  15. Functional Activation during the Rapid Visual Information Processing Task in a Middle Aged Cohort: An fMRI Study

    OpenAIRE

    Neale, Chris; Johnston, Patrick; Hughes, Matthew; Scholey, Andrew

    2015-01-01

    The Rapid Visual Information Processing (RVIP) task, a serial discrimination task where task performance believed to reflect sustained attention capabilities, is widely used in behavioural research and increasingly in neuroimaging studies. To date, functional neuroimaging research into the RVIP has been undertaken using block analyses, reflecting the sustained processing involved in the task, but not necessarily the transient processes associated with individual trial performance. Furthermore...

  16. 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.

  17. Stressful task increases drive for thinness and bulimia: a laboratory study.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sandra eSassaroli

    2015-05-01

    Full Text Available The scientific literature has suggested that stress undergirds the development of eating disorders (ED. Therefore, this study explored whether laboratory induced stress increases self-reported drive for thinness and bulimic symptoms measured via self-report. The relationship between control, perfectionism, stress, and cognition related to ED was examined using correlational methodology. 86 participants completed an experimental task using a personal computer. All individuals completed a battery of tests before and after the stressful task. Analyses showed a significant statistical increase in average scores on the drive for thinness and bulimia measured before and after a stressful task, and path analysis revealed two different cognitive models for the mechanism leading to drive for thinness and bulimia. These findings suggest that stress is an important factor in the development of the drive for thinness and bulimia.

  18. Effect of visual feedback on brain activation during motor tasks: an FMRI study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Noble, Jeremy W; Eng, Janice J; Boyd, Lara A

    2013-07-01

    This study examined the effect of visual feedback and force level on the neural mechanisms responsible for the performance of a motor task. We used a voxel-wise fMRI approach to determine the effect of visual feedback (with and without) during a grip force task at 35% and 70% of maximum voluntary contraction. Two areas (contralateral rostral premotor cortex and putamen) displayed an interaction between force and feedback conditions. When the main effect of feedback condition was analyzed, higher activation when visual feedback was available was found in 22 of the 24 active brain areas, while the two other regions (contralateral lingual gyrus and ipsilateral precuneus) showed greater levels of activity when no visual feedback was available. The results suggest that there is a potentially confounding influence of visual feedback on brain activation during a motor task, and for some regions, this is dependent on the level of force applied.

  19. Frontal brain activation during a working memory task: a time-domain fNIRS study

    Science.gov (United States)

    Molteni, E.; Baselli, G.; Bianchi, A. M.; Caffini, M.; Contini, D.; Spinelli, L.; Torricelli, A.; Cerutti, S.; Cubeddu, R.

    2009-02-01

    We evaluated frontal brain activation during a working memory task with graded levels of difficulty in a group of 19 healthy subjects, by means of time-resolved fNIRS technique. Brain activation was computed, and was then separated into a "block-related" and a "tonic" components. Load-related increases of blood oxygenation were studied for the four different levels of task difficulty. Generalized Linear Models were applied to the data in order to explore the metabolic processes occurring during the mental effort and, possibly, their involvement in short term memorization. Results attest the presence of a persistent attentional-related metabolic activity, superimposed to a task-related mnemonic contribution. Moreover, a systemic component probably deriving from the extra-cerebral capillary bed was detected.

  20. Relative Age Effects in a Cognitive Task: A Case Study of Youth Chess

    Science.gov (United States)

    Helsen, Werner F.; Baker, Joseph; Schorer, Joerg; Steingröver, Christina; Wattie, Nick; Starkes, Janet L.

    2016-01-01

    The relative age effect (RAE) has been demonstrated in many youth and professional sports. In this study, we hypothesized that there would also be a RAE among youth chess players who are typically involved in a complex cognitive task without significant physical requirements. While typical RAEs have been observed in adult chess players, in this…

  1. Multilingual and Multicultural Task-Based Learning Scenarios: A Pilot Study from the MAGICC Project

    Science.gov (United States)

    Álvarez, Inma; Pérez-Cavana, María Luisa

    2015-01-01

    In this article we report on the results of a pilot study on the use of task-based multilingual and multicultural professional scenarios for higher education teachers and learners at BA and MA level. The scenarios reflect new learning outcomes and assessment criteria for the presently under-conceptualised domain of communication in multilingual…

  2. Task and Rater Effects in L2 Speaking and Writing: A Synthesis of Generalizability Studies

    Science.gov (United States)

    In'nami, Yo; Koizumi, Rie

    2016-01-01

    We addressed Deville and Chalhoub-Deville's (2006), Schoonen's (2012), and Xi and Mollaun's (2006) call for research into the contextual features that are considered related to person-by-task interactions in the framework of generalizability theory in two ways. First, we quantitatively synthesized the generalizability studies to determine the…

  3. Validating the Interpretations of PISA and TIMSS Tasks: A Rating Study

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rindermann, Heiner; Baumeister, Antonia E. E.

    2015-01-01

    Scholastic tests regard cognitive abilities to be domain-specific competences. However, high correlations between competences indicate either high task similarity or a dependence on common factors. The present rating study examined the validity of 12 Programme for International Student Assessment (PISA) and Third or Trends in International…

  4. Lexical-Semantic Search Under Different Covert Verbal Fluency Tasks: An fMRI Study

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Yunqing Li

    2017-08-01

    Full Text Available Background: Verbal fluency is a measure of cognitive flexibility and word search strategies that is widely used to characterize impaired cognitive function. Despite the wealth of research on identifying and characterizing distinct aspects of verbal fluency, the anatomic and functional substrates of retrieval-related search and post-retrieval control processes still have not been fully elucidated.Methods: Twenty-one native English-speaking, healthy, right-handed, adult volunteers (mean age = 31 years; range = 21–45 years; 9 F took part in a block-design functional Magnetic Resonance Imaging (fMRI study of free recall, covert word generation tasks when guided by phonemic (P, semantic-category (C, and context-based fill-in–the-blank sentence completion (S cues. General linear model (GLM, Independent Component Analysis (ICA, and psychophysiological interaction (PPI were used to further characterize the neural substrate of verbal fluency as a function of retrieval cue type.Results: Common localized activations across P, C, and S tasks occurred in the bilateral superior and left inferior frontal gyrus, left anterior cingulate cortex, bilateral supplementary motor area (SMA, and left insula. Differential task activations were centered in the occipital, temporal and parietal regions as well as the thalamus and cerebellum. The context-based fluency task, i.e., the S task, elicited higher differential brain activity in a lateralized frontal-temporal network typically engaged in complex language processing. P and C tasks elicited activation in limited pathways mainly within the left frontal regions. ICA and PPI results of the S task suggested that brain regions distributed across both hemispheres, extending beyond classical language areas, are recruited for lexical-semantic access and retrieval during sentence completion.Conclusion: Study results support the hypothesis of overlapping, as well as distinct, neural networks for covert word generation when

  5. Development of novel tasks for studying view-invariant object recognition in rodents: Sensitivity to scopolamine.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mitchnick, Krista A; Wideman, Cassidy E; Huff, Andrew E; Palmer, Daniel; McNaughton, Bruce L; Winters, Boyer D

    2018-05-15

    The capacity to recognize objects from different view-points or angles, referred to as view-invariance, is an essential process that humans engage in daily. Currently, the ability to investigate the neurobiological underpinnings of this phenomenon is limited, as few ethologically valid view-invariant object recognition tasks exist for rodents. Here, we report two complementary, novel view-invariant object recognition tasks in which rodents physically interact with three-dimensional objects. Prior to experimentation, rats and mice were given extensive experience with a set of 'pre-exposure' objects. In a variant of the spontaneous object recognition task, novelty preference for pre-exposed or new objects was assessed at various angles of rotation (45°, 90° or 180°); unlike control rodents, for whom the objects were novel, rats and mice tested with pre-exposed objects did not discriminate between rotated and un-rotated objects in the choice phase, indicating substantial view-invariant object recognition. Secondly, using automated operant touchscreen chambers, rats were tested on pre-exposed or novel objects in a pairwise discrimination task, where the rewarded stimulus (S+) was rotated (180°) once rats had reached acquisition criterion; rats tested with pre-exposed objects re-acquired the pairwise discrimination following S+ rotation more effectively than those tested with new objects. Systemic scopolamine impaired performance on both tasks, suggesting involvement of acetylcholine at muscarinic receptors in view-invariant object processing. These tasks present novel means of studying the behavioral and neural bases of view-invariant object recognition in rodents. Copyright © 2018 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  6. Blunted amygdala functional connectivity during a stress task in alcohol dependent individuals: A pilot study

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Natasha E. Wade, M.S.

    2017-12-01

    Full Text Available Background: Scant research has been conducted on neural mechanisms underlying stress processing in individuals with alcohol dependence (AD. We examined neural substrates of stress in AD individuals compared with controls using an fMRI task previously shown to induce stress, assessing amygdala functional connectivity to medial prefrontal cortex (mPFC. Materials and methods: For this novel pilot study, 10 abstinent AD individuals and 11 controls completed a modified Trier stress task while undergoing fMRI acquisition. The amygdala was used as a seed region for whole-brain seed-based functional connectivity analysis. Results: After controlling for family-wise error (p = 0.05, there was significantly decreased left and right amygdala connectivity with frontal (specifically mPFC, temporal, parietal, and cerebellar regions. Subjective stress, but not craving, increased from pre-to post-task. Conclusions: This study demonstrated decreased connectivity between the amygdala and regions important for stress and emotional processing in long-term abstinent individuals with AD. These results suggest aberrant stress processing in individuals with AD even after lengthy periods of abstinence. Keywords: Alcohol dependence, fMRI, Stress task, Functional connectivity, Amygdala

  7. A study on optimal task decomposition of networked parallel computing using PVM

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Seong, Kwan Jae; Kim, Han Gyoo

    1998-01-01

    A numerical study is performed to investigate the effect of task decomposition on networked parallel processes using Parallel Virtual Machine (PVM). In our study, a PVM program distributed over a network of workstations is used in solving a finite difference version of a one dimensional heat equation, where natural choice of PVM programming structure would be the master-slave paradigm, with the aim of finding an optimal configuration resulting in least computing time including communication overhead among machines. Given a set of PVM tasks comprised of one master and five slave programs, it is found that there exists a pseudo-optimal number of machines, which does not necessarily coincide with the number of tasks, that yields the best performance when the network is under a light usage. Increasing the number of machines beyond this optimal one does not improve computing performance since increase in communication overhead among the excess number of machines offsets the decrease in CPU time obtained by distributing the PVM tasks among these machines. However, when the network traffic is heavy, the results exhibit a more random characteristic that is explained by the random nature of data transfer time

  8. Association between two distinct executive tasks in schizophrenia: a functional transcranial Doppler sonography study

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Theodoridou Anastasia

    2006-05-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Schizophrenia is a severe mental disorder involving impairments in executive functioning, which are important cognitive processes that can be assessed by planning tasks such as the Stockings of Cambridge (SOC, and tasks of rule learning/abstraction such as the Wisconsin Card Sorting Test (WCST. We undertook this study to investigate the association between performance during separate phases of SOC and WCST, including mean cerebral blood flow velocity (MFV measurements in chronic schizophrenia. Methods Functional transcranial Doppler sonography (fTCD was used to assess bilateral MFV changes in the middle (MCA and anterior (ACA cerebral arteries. Twenty-two patients with chronic schizophrenia and 20 healthy subjects with similar sociodemographic characteristics performed SOC and WCST during fTCD measurements of the MCA and the ACA. The SOC was varied in terms of easy and difficult problems, and also in terms of separate phases, namely mental planning and movement execution. The WCST performance was assessed separately for maintaining set and set shifting. This allowed us to examine the impact of problem difficulty and the impact of separate phases of a planning task on distinct intervals of WCST. Simultaneous registration of MFV was carried out to investigate the linkage of brain perfusion during the tasks. Results In patients, slowing of movement execution during easy problems (SOC was associated with slowing during maintaining set (WCST (P Conclusion The results of this study demonstrate performance and brain perfusion abnormalities in the association pattern of two different tasks of executive functioning in schizophrenia, and they support the notion that executive functions have a pathological functional correlate predominantly in the lateral hemispheres of the brain. This study also underpins the scientific potential of fTCD in assessing brain perfusion in patients with schizophrenia.

  9. Noise disturbance in open-plan study environments : a field study on noise sources, student tasks and room acoustic parameters

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Braat-Eggen, P.E.; van Heijst, A.W.M.; Hornikx, M.C.J.; Kohlrausch, A.G.

    2017-01-01

    The aim of this study is to gain more insight in the assessment of noise in open-plan study environments and to reveal correlations between noise disturbance experienced by students and the noise sources they perceive, the tasks they perform and the acoustic parameters of the open-plan study

  10. Workplace bullying and task performance: A study on salespeople in retail industry

    OpenAIRE

    Shi Min Chia; Daisy Mui Hung Kee

    2018-01-01

    Occupational stress has been known as a major cause of safety and health issues among sales people in retail organizations. Despite this, numerous studies have indicated the importance of factors and outcomes of occupational stress in several occupations, a knowledge gap on occupational stress remains a hot topic of interest for academics and practitioners. This study aims to examine the workplace bullying as a factor and task performance as the outcome of occupational stress among salespeopl...

  11. IEA Wind Task 24 Integration of Wind and Hydropower Systems; Volume 2: Participant Case Studies

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Acker, T.

    2011-12-01

    This report describes the background, concepts, issues and conclusions related to the feasibility of integrating wind and hydropower, as investigated by the members of IEA Wind Task 24. It is the result of a four-year effort involving seven IEA member countries and thirteen participating organizations. The companion report, Volume 2, describes in detail the study methodologies and participant case studies, and exists as a reference for this report.

  12. Roles, tasks and educational functions of postgraduate programme directors: a qualitative study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Frydén, Hanna; Ponzer, Sari; Heikkilä, Kristiina; Kihlström, Lars; Nordquist, Jonas

    2015-10-01

    A programme director is often required to organise postgraduate medical education. This leadership role can include educational as well as managerial duties. Only a few published studies have explored programme directors' own perceptions of their role. There is a need to explore the use of theoretical frameworks to improve the understanding of educational roles. To explore programme directors' own perceptions of their role in terms of tasks and functions, and to relate these roles to the theoretical framework developed by Bolman and Deal. Semi-structured interviews were conducted with 17 programme directors between February and August 2013. The data were subjected to content analysis using a deductive approach. The various roles and tasks included by participants in their perceptions of their work could be categorised within the framework of functions described by Bolman and Deal. These included: structuring the education (structural function); supporting individuals and handling relations (human resource function); negotiating between different interests (political function); and influencing the culture at the departmental level (symbolic function). The functions most often emphasised by participants were the structural and human resource functions. Some tasks involved several functions which varied over time. Programme directors' own perceptions of their roles, tasks and functions varied widely. The theoretical framework of Bolman and Deal might be helpful when explaining and developing these roles. Published by the BMJ Publishing Group Limited. For permission to use (where not already granted under a licence) please go to http://group.bmj.com/group/rights-licensing/permissions.

  13. A comparative study of single and multiple hand tasks using functional MRI

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Shin, Byung Suck; Lee, Ho Kyu; Park, Sung Tae; Kim, Dong Eun; Lee, Myung Jun; Choi, Choong Gon; Kim, Jae Kyun; Suh, Dae Chul; Lim, Tae Hwan

    1998-01-01

    The purpose of this study is to assess, using functional MRI and by comparing activated motor sensory areas, the independence of brain activation during single and alternative multiple hand tasks. The subjects were six healthy volunteers. Using at 1.5T Siemens system and single shot FID-EPI sequencing (T2 weighted image; TR/TE 0.96 msec/ 61msec, flip angle 90 deg, matrix size 96 x 128, slice thickness/gap 5 mm/0.8 mm, FOV 200 mm) and T1-weighted anatomic images, functional MRI was performed. The paradigm of motor tasks consisted of appositional finger movements; the first involved the separate use of the right, left, and both hands in sequence. Using cross-correlation method (threshold : 0.6) and fMRI analysis software (stimulate 5.0), functional images were obtained. The activated area of brain cortex, the number of pixel, the average percentage change in signal intensity, and correlation of the time-signal intensity curve in the activated motor area were analysed and compared between the two task groups. Statistical analysis involved the use of Wilcoxon signed-rank test. Brain activation did not differ according to whether the motor task was single or alternative. We therefore suggest that during multiple stimuli, the relevant functional area and neuronal column are activated independently. (author). 19 refs., 2 tabs., 3 figs

  14. Reservoir Maintenance and Development Task Report for the DOE Geothermal Technologies Office GeoVision Study.

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Lowry, Thomas Stephen [Sandia National Lab. (SNL-NM), Albuquerque, NM (United States); Finger, John T. [Sandia National Lab. (SNL-NM), Albuquerque, NM (United States); Carrigan, Charles R. [Sandia National Lab. (SNL-NM), Albuquerque, NM (United States); Foris, Adam [Sandia National Lab. (SNL-NM), Albuquerque, NM (United States); Kennedy, Mack B. [Sandia National Lab. (SNL-NM), Albuquerque, NM (United States); Corbet, Thomas F. [Sandia National Lab. (SNL-NM), Albuquerque, NM (United States); Doughty, Christine A. [Sandia National Lab. (SNL-NM), Albuquerque, NM (United States); Pye, Steven [Sandia National Lab. (SNL-NM), Albuquerque, NM (United States); Sonnenthal, Eric L. [Sandia National Lab. (SNL-NM), Albuquerque, NM (United States)

    2017-09-01

    This report documents the key findings from the Reservoir Maintenance and Development (RM&D) Task of the U.S. Department of Energy's (DOE), Geothermal Technologies Office (GTO) Geothermal Vision Study (GeoVision Study). The GeoVision Study had the objective of conducting analyses of future geothermal growth based on sets of current and future geothermal technology developments. The RM&D Task is one of seven tasks within the GeoVision Study with the others being, Exploration and Confirmation, Potential to Penetration, Institutional Market Barriers, Environmental and Social Impacts, Thermal Applications, and Hybrid Systems. The full set of findings and the details of the GeoVision Study can be found in the final GeoVision Study report on the DOE-GTO website. As applied here, RM&D refers to the activities associated with developing, exploiting, and maintaining a known geothermal resource. It assumes that the site has already been vetted and that the resource has been evaluated to be of sufficient quality to move towards full-scale development. It also assumes that the resource is to be developed for power generation, as opposed to low-temperature or direct use applications. This document presents the key factors influencing RM&D from both a technological and operational standpoint and provides a baseline of its current state. It also looks forward to describe areas of research and development that must be pursued if the development geothermal energy is to reach its full potential.

  15. A cognitive stressor for event-related potential studies: the Portland arithmetic stress task.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Atchley, Rachel; Ellingson, Roger; Klee, Daniel; Memmott, Tabatha; Oken, Barry

    2017-05-01

    In this experiment, we developed and evaluated the Portland Arithmetic Stress Task (PAST) as a cognitive stressor to evaluate acute and sustained stress reactivity for event-related potential (ERP) studies. The PAST is a titrated arithmetic task adapted from the Montreal Imaging Stress Task (MIST), with added experimental control over presentation parameters, improved and synchronized acoustic feedback and generation of timing markers needed for physiological analyzes of real-time brain activity. Thirty-one older adults (M = 60 years) completed the PAST. EEG was recorded to assess feedback-related negativity (FRN) and the magnitude of the stress response through autonomic nervous system activity and salivary cortisol. Physiological measures other than EEG included heart rate, respiration rate, heart rate variability, blood pressure and salivary cortisol. These measures were collected at several time points throughout the task. Feedback-related negativity evoked-potential responses were elicited and they significantly differed depending on whether positive or negative feedback was received. The PAST also increased systolic blood pressure, heart rate variability and respiration rates compared to a control condition attentional task. These preliminary results suggest that the PAST is an effective cognitive stressor. Successful measurement of the feedback-related negativity suggests that the PAST is conducive to EEG and time-sensitive ERP experiments. Moreover, the physiological findings support the PAST as a potent method for inducing stress in older adult participants. Further research is needed to confirm these results, but the PAST shows promise as a tool for cognitive stress induction for time-locked event-related potential experiments.

  16. Noise disturbance in open-plan study environments: a field study on noise sources, student tasks and room acoustic parameters.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Braat-Eggen, P Ella; van Heijst, Anne; Hornikx, Maarten; Kohlrausch, Armin

    2017-09-01

    The aim of this study is to gain more insight in the assessment of noise in open-plan study environments and to reveal correlations between noise disturbance experienced by students and the noise sources they perceive, the tasks they perform and the acoustic parameters of the open-plan study environment they work in. Data were collected in five open-plan study environments at universities in the Netherlands. A questionnaire was used to investigate student tasks, perceived sound sources and their perceived disturbance, and sound measurements were performed to determine the room acoustic parameters. This study shows that 38% of the surveyed students are disturbed by background noise in an open-plan study environment. Students are mostly disturbed by speech when performing complex cognitive tasks like studying for an exam, reading and writing. Significant but weak correlations were found between the room acoustic parameters and noise disturbance of students. Practitioner Summary: A field study was conducted to gain more insight in the assessment of noise in open-plan study environments at universities in the Netherlands. More than one third of the students was disturbed by noise. An interaction effect was found for task type, source type and room acoustic parameters.

  17. An fMRI study of sex differences in regional activation to a verbal and a spatial task.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gur, R C; Alsop, D; Glahn, D; Petty, R; Swanson, C L; Maldjian, J A; Turetsky, B I; Detre, J A; Gee, J; Gur, R E

    2000-09-01

    Sex differences in cognitive performance have been documented, women performing better on some phonological tasks and men on spatial tasks. An earlier fMRI study suggested sex differences in distributed brain activation during phonological processing, with bilateral activation seen in women while men showed primarily left-lateralized activation. This blood oxygen level-dependent fMRI study examined sex differences (14 men, 13 women) in activation for a spatial task (judgment of line orientation) compared to a verbal-reasoning task (analogies) that does not typically show sex differences. Task difficulty was manipulated. Hypothesized ROI-based analysis documented the expected left-lateralized changes for the verbal task in the inferior parietal and planum temporal regions in both men and women, but only men showed right-lateralized increase for the spatial task in these regions. Image-based analysis revealed a distributed network of cortical regions activated by the tasks, which consisted of the lateral frontal, medial frontal, mid-temporal, occipitoparietal, and occipital regions. The activation was more left lateralized for the verbal and more right for the spatial tasks, but men also showed some left activation for the spatial task, which was not seen in women. Increased task difficulty produced more distributed activation for the verbal and more circumscribed activation for the spatial task. The results suggest that failure to activate the appropriate hemisphere in regions directly involved in task performance may explain certain sex differences in performance. They also extend, for a spatial task, the principle that bilateral activation in a distributed cognitive system underlies sex differences in performance. Copyright 2000 Academic Press.

  18. Effects of dual-task training on balance and executive functions in Parkinson's disease: A pilot study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fernandes, Ângela; Rocha, Nuno; Santos, Rubim; Tavares, João Manuel R S

    2015-01-01

    The aim of this study was to analyze the efficacy of cognitive-motor dual-task training compared with single-task training on balance and executive functions in individuals with Parkinson's disease. Fifteen subjects, aged between 39 and 75 years old, were randomly assigned to the dual-task training group (n = 8) and single-task training group (n = 7). The training was run twice a week for 6 weeks. The single-task group received balance training and the dual-task group performed cognitive tasks simultaneously with the balance training. There were no significant differences between the two groups at baseline. After the intervention, the results for mediolateral sway with eyes closed were significantly better for the dual-task group and anteroposterior sway with eyes closed was significantly better for the single-task group. The results suggest superior outcomes for the dual-task training compared to the single-task training for static postural control, except in anteroposterior sway with eyes closed.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2017-01-01

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

  20. Main tasks of studying strong regulation of excitation of complex electrical system generators

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Gruzdev, I.A.; Yekimova, M.M.

    1982-01-01

    A survey is made of the current state of studies of the damping properties of complex electricity systems. The calculation programs of stability are based on frequency methods using the method of D-division. Now, when ARV of strong effect dominates at the SG, the task of coordinating their adjustments develops. Consequently, the following questions are discussed: study of the properties of quality functional with several points of regulation in the circuits of different structure; development of the efficient procedures for coordinating the ARV adjustment of the related energy systems; and creation of resources for solving these tasks. Results are presented of coordinating the ARV adjustments of the generators of the 3-machine electricity system. As an example, nonlinear relationships are shown between the obtained degree of stability and the coefficient of stabilization.

  1. The reality of task shifting in medicines management- a case study from Tanzania.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wiedenmayer, Karin A; Kapologwe, Ntuli; Charles, James; Chilunda, Fiona; Mapunjo, Siana

    2015-01-01

    Tanzania suffers a severe shortage of pharmaceutical staff. This negatively affects the provision of pharmaceutical services and access to medicines, particularly in rural areas. Task shifting has been proposed as a way to mitigate the impact of health worker shortfalls.The aim of this study was to understand the context and extent of task shifting in pharmaceutical management in Dodoma Region, Tanzania. We explored 1) the number of trained pharmaceutical staff as compared to clinical cadres managing medicines, 2) the national establishment for staffing levels, 3) job descriptions, 4) supply management training conducted and 5) availability of medicines and adherence to Good Storage Practice. A cross-sectional study was conducted in 270 public health facilities in 2011. A pre-tested questionnaire was administered to the person in charge of the facility to collect data on staff employed and their respective pharmaceutical tasks. Availability of 26 tracer medicines and adherence to Good Storage Practice guidelines was surveyed by direct observation. The national establishments for pharmaceutical staffing levels and job descriptions of facility cadres were analysed. While required staffing levels in 1999 were 50, the region employed a total of only 14 pharmaceutical staff in 2011. Job descriptions revealed that, next to pharmaceutical staff, only nurses were required to provide dispensing services and adherence counselling. In 95.5% of studied health facilities medicines management was done by non-pharmaceutically trained cadres, predominantly medical attendants. The first training on supply management was provided in 2005 with no refresher training thereafter. Mean availability of tracer medicines was 53%, while 56% of health facilities fully met criteria of Good Storage Practice. Task shifting is a reality in the pharmaceutical sector in Tanzania and it occurs mainly as a coping mechanism rather than a formal response to the workforce crisis. In Dodoma Region

  2. Stressful task increases drive for thinness and bulimia: a laboratory study

    OpenAIRE

    Sassaroli, Sandra; Fiore, Francesca; Mezzaluna, Clarice; Ruggiero, Giovanni Maria

    2015-01-01

    The scientific literature has suggested that stress undergirds the development of eating disorders (ED). Therefore, this study explored whether laboratory induced stress increases self-reported drive for thinness and bulimic symptoms measured via self-report. The relationship between control, perfectionism, stress, and cognition related to ED was examined using correlational methodology. Eighty-six participants completed an experimental task using a personal computer (PC). All individuals com...

  3. Dual Task of Fine Motor Skill and Problem Solving in Individuals With Multiple Sclerosis: A Pilot Study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Goverover, Y; Sandroff, B M; DeLuca, J

    2018-04-01

    To (1) examine and compare dual-task performance in patients with multiple sclerosis (MS) and healthy controls (HCs) using mathematical problem-solving questions that included an everyday competence component while performing an upper extremity fine motor task; and (2) examine whether difficulties in dual-task performance are associated with problems in performing an everyday internet task. Pilot study, mixed-design with both a within and between subjects' factor. A nonprofit rehabilitation research institution and the community. Participants (N=38) included persons with MS (n=19) and HCs (n=19) who were recruited from a nonprofit rehabilitation research institution and from the community. Not applicable. Participant were presented with 2 testing conditions: (1) solving mathematical everyday problems or placing bolts into divots (single-task condition); and (2) solving problems while putting bolts into divots (dual-task condition). Additionally, participants were required to perform a test of everyday internet competence. As expected, dual-task performance was significantly worse than either of the single-task tasks (ie, number of bolts into divots or correct answers, and time to answer the questions). Cognitive but not motor dual-task cost was associated with worse performance in activities of everyday internet tasks. Cognitive dual-task cost is significantly associated with worse performance of everyday technology. This was not observed in the motor dual-task cost. The implications of dual-task costs on everyday activity are discussed. Copyright © 2017 American Congress of Rehabilitation Medicine. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  4. Study of advanced composite structural design concepts for an arrow wing supersonic cruise configuration, task 3

    Science.gov (United States)

    1978-01-01

    A structural design study was conducted to assess the relative merits of structural concepts using advanced composite materials for an advanced supersonic aircraft cruising at Mach 2.7. The configuration and structural arrangement developed during Task I and II of the study, was used as the baseline configuration. Allowable stresses and strains were established for boron and advanced graphite fibers based on projected fiber properties available in the next decade. Structural concepts were designed and analyzed using graphite polyimide and boron polyimide, applied to stiffened panels and conventional sandwich panels. The conventional sandwich panels were selected as the structural concept to be used on the wing structure. The upper and lower surface panels of the Task I arrow wing were redesigned using high-strength graphite polyimide sandwich panels over the titanium spars and ribs. The ATLAS computer system was used as the basis for stress analysis and resizing the surface panels using the loads from the Task II study, without adjustment for change in aeroelastic deformation. The flutter analysis indicated a decrease in the flutter speed compared to the baseline titanium wing design. The flutter analysis indicated a decrease in the flutter speed compared to the baseline titanium wing design. The flutter speed was increased to that of the titanium wing, with a weight penalty less than that of the metallic airplane.

  5. Understanding and Visualizing Multitasking and Task Switching Activities: A Time Motion Study to Capture Nursing Workflow.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yen, Po-Yin; Kelley, Marjorie; Lopetegui, Marcelo; Rosado, Amber L; Migliore, Elaina M; Chipps, Esther M; Buck, Jacalyn

    2016-01-01

    A fundamental understanding of multitasking within nursing workflow is important in today's dynamic and complex healthcare environment. We conducted a time motion study to understand nursing workflow, specifically multitasking and task switching activities. We used TimeCaT, a comprehensive electronic time capture tool, to capture observational data. We established inter-observer reliability prior to data collection. We completed 56 hours of observation of 10 registered nurses. We found, on average, nurses had 124 communications and 208 hands-on tasks per 4-hour block of time. They multitasked (having communication and hands-on tasks simultaneously) 131 times, representing 39.48% of all times; the total multitasking duration ranges from 14.6 minutes to 109 minutes, 44.98 minutes (18.63%) on average. We also reviewed workflow visualization to uncover the multitasking events. Our study design and methods provide a practical and reliable approach to conducting and analyzing time motion studies from both quantitative and qualitative perspectives.

  6. Task Order 20: Supercritical Carbon Dioxide Brayton Cycle Energy Conversion Study

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Murray, Paul [AREVA Federal Services, LLC, Charlotte, NC (United States); Lindsay, Edward [AREVA Federal Services, LLC, Charlotte, NC (United States); McDowell, Michael [AREVA Federal Services, LLC, Charlotte, NC (United States); Huang, Megan [AREVA Federal Services, LLC, Charlotte, NC (United States)

    2015-04-23

    AREVA Inc. developed this study for the US Department of Energy (DOE) office of Nuclear Energy (NE) in accordance with Task Order 20 Statement of Work (SOW) covering research and development activities for the Supercritical Carbon Dioxide (sCO2) Brayton Cycle energy conversion. The study addresses the conversion of sCO2 heat energy to electrical output by use of a Brayton Cycle system and focuses on the potential of a net efficiency increase via cycle recuperation and recompression stages. The study also addresses issues and study needed to advance development and implementation of a 10 MWe sCO2 demonstration project.

  7. Innovative nuclear thermal propulsion technology evaluation: Results of the NASA/DOE Task Team study

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Howe, S.; Borowski, S.; Helms, I.; Diaz, N.; Anghaie, S.; Latham, T.

    1991-01-01

    In response to findings from two NASA/DOE nuclear propulsion workshops held in the summer of 1990, six task teams were formed to continue evaluation of various nuclear propulsion concepts. The Task Team on Nuclear Thermal Propulsion (NTP) created the Innovative Concepts Subpanel to evaluate thermal propulsion concepts which did not utilize solid fuel. The Subpanel endeavored to evaluate each of the concepts on a ''level technological playing field,'' and to identify critical technologies, issues, and early proof-of-concept experiments. The concepts included the liquid core fission, the gas core fission, the fission foil reactors, explosively driven systems, fusion, and antimatter. The results of the studies by the panel will be provided. 13 refs., 6 figs., 2 tabs

  8. EEG Analysis during complex diagnostic tasks in Nuclear Power Plants - Simulator-based Experimental Study

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Ha, Jun Su; Seong, Poong Hyun

    2005-01-01

    In literature, there are a lot of studies based on EEG signals during cognitive activities of human-beings but most of them dealt with simple cognitive activities such as transforming letters into Morse code, subtraction, reading, semantic memory search, visual search, memorizing a set of words and so on. In this work, EEG signals were analyzed during complex diagnostic tasks in NPP simulator-based environment. Investigated are the theta, alpha, beta, and gamma band EEG powers during the diagnostic tasks. The experimental design and procedure are represented in section 2 and the results are shown in section 3. Finally some considerations are discussed and the direction for the further work is proposed in section 4

  9. Small Engine Technology (SET) Task 24 Business and Regional Aircraft System Studies

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lieber, Lysbeth

    2003-01-01

    This final report has been prepared by Honeywell Engines & Systems, Phoenix, Arizona, a unit of Honeywell International Inc., documenting work performed during the period June 1999 through December 1999 for the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) Glenn Research Center, Cleveland, Ohio, under the Small Engine Technology (SET) Program, Contract No. NAS3-27483, Task Order 24, Business and Regional Aircraft System Studies. The work performed under SET Task 24 consisted of evaluating the noise reduction benefits compared to the baseline noise levels of representative 1992 technology aircraft, obtained by applying different combinations of noise reduction technologies to five business and regional aircraft configurations. This report focuses on the selection of the aircraft configurations and noise reduction technologies, the prediction of noise levels for those aircraft, and the comparison of the noise levels with those of the baseline aircraft.

  10. EEG Analysis during complex diagnostic tasks in Nuclear Power Plants - Simulator-based Experimental Study

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Ha, Jun Su; Seong, Poong Hyun [Korea Advanced Institute of Science and Technology, Taejon (Korea, Republic of)

    2005-07-01

    In literature, there are a lot of studies based on EEG signals during cognitive activities of human-beings but most of them dealt with simple cognitive activities such as transforming letters into Morse code, subtraction, reading, semantic memory search, visual search, memorizing a set of words and so on. In this work, EEG signals were analyzed during complex diagnostic tasks in NPP simulator-based environment. Investigated are the theta, alpha, beta, and gamma band EEG powers during the diagnostic tasks. The experimental design and procedure are represented in section 2 and the results are shown in section 3. Finally some considerations are discussed and the direction for the further work is proposed in section 4.

  11. HIV/AIDS case management tasks and activities: the results of a functional analysis study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Grube, B; Chernesky, R H

    2001-01-01

    Functional analysis, a variation of the time study technique, was used to examine how HIV/AIDS case managers in the tri-county region of New York State spend their time-the actual tasks and activities they choose to perform relative to the total universe of activities and tasks subsumed in the general category of case management. The picture developed was of a system operating primarily in a crisis mode, spending relatively brief amounts of time completing a range of activities and providing an extensive scope of services for or on behalf of clients. The bulk of the work was client centered, not administrative, and involved providing disease management and essential services (e.g., family and mental health). The implications of these findings are discussed, with particular attention paid to the potential influence of client profiles and worker demographics.

  12. Blunted amygdala functional connectivity during a stress task in alcohol dependent individuals: A pilot study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wade, Natasha E; Padula, Claudia B; Anthenelli, Robert M; Nelson, Erik; Eliassen, James; Lisdahl, Krista M

    2017-12-01

    Scant research has been conducted on neural mechanisms underlying stress processing in individuals with alcohol dependence (AD). We examined neural substrates of stress in AD individuals compared with controls using an fMRI task previously shown to induce stress, assessing amygdala functional connectivity to medial prefrontal cortex (mPFC). For this novel pilot study, 10 abstinent AD individuals and 11 controls completed a modified Trier stress task while undergoing fMRI acquisition. The amygdala was used as a seed region for whole-brain seed-based functional connectivity analysis. After controlling for family-wise error (p = 0.05), there was significantly decreased left and right amygdala connectivity with frontal (specifically mPFC), temporal, parietal, and cerebellar regions. Subjective stress, but not craving, increased from pre-to post-task. This study demonstrated decreased connectivity between the amygdala and regions important for stress and emotional processing in long-term abstinent individuals with AD. These results suggest aberrant stress processing in individuals with AD even after lengthy periods of abstinence.

  13. Beyond the initial 140 ms, lexical decision and reading aloud are different tasks: An ERP study with topographic analysis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mahé, Gwendoline; Zesiger, Pascal; Laganaro, Marina

    2015-11-15

    Most of our knowledge on the time-course of the mechanisms involved in reading derived from electrophysiological studies is based on lexical decision tasks. By contrast, very few ERP studies investigated the processes involved in reading aloud. It has been suggested that the lexical decision task provides a good index of the processes occurring during reading aloud, with only late processing differences related to task response modalities. However, some behavioral studies reported different sensitivity to psycholinguistic factors between the two tasks, suggesting that print processing could differ at earlier processing stages. The aim of the present study was thus to carry out an ERP comparison between lexical decision and reading aloud in order to determine when print processing differs between these two tasks. Twenty native French speakers performed a lexical decision task and a reading aloud task with the same written stimuli. Results revealed different electrophysiological patterns on both waveform amplitudes and global topography between lexical decision and reading aloud from about 140 ms after stimulus presentation for both words and pseudowords, i.e., as early as the N170 component. These results suggest that only very early, low-level visual processes are common to the two tasks which differ in core processes. Taken together, our main finding questions the use of the lexical decision task as an appropriate paradigm to investigate reading processes and warns against generalizing its results to word reading. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  14. An ergonomics study of computerized emergency operating procedures: Presentation style, task complexity, and training level

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Xu Song; Song Fei; Li Zhizhong; Zhao Qianyi; Luo Wei; He Xuhong; Salvendy, Gavriel

    2008-01-01

    Emergency operating procedures (EOPs) are widely used in nuclear power plants (NPPs). With the development of information technology, computerized EOPs are taking the place of paper-based ones. Unlike paper-based EOPs, the industrial practice of computerized EOPs is still quite limited. Ergonomics issues of computerized EOPs have not been studied adequately. This study focuses on the effects of EOP presentation style, task complexity, and training level on the performance of the operators in the execution of computerized EOPs. One simulated computerized EOP system was developed to present two EOPs, each with different task complexity levels, by two presentation styles (Style A: one- and two-dimensional flowcharts combination; Style B: two-dimensional flowchart and success logic tree combination). Forty subjects participated in the experiment of EOP execution using the simulated system. Statistical analysis of the experimental results indicates that: (1) complexity, presentation style, and training level all can significantly influence the error rate. High-complexity tasks and lack of sufficient training may lead to a higher error rate. Style B caused a significantly higher error rate than style A did in the skilled phase. So the designers of computerized procedures should take the presentation styles of EOPs into account. (2) Task complexity and training level can significantly influence operation time. No significant difference was found in operation time between the two presentation styles. (3) Training level can also significantly influence the subjective workload of EOPs operations. This implies that adequate training is very important for the performance of computerized EOPs even if emergency responses with computerized EOPs are much more simple and easy than that with paper-based EOPs

  15. The concentric model of human working memory: A validation study using complex span and updating tasks

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Velichkovsky B. B.

    2017-09-01

    Full Text Available Background. Working memory (WM seems to be central to most forms of high-level cognition. This fact is fueling the growing interest in studying its structure and functional organization. The influential “concentric model” (Oberauer, 2002 suggests that WM contains a processing component and two storage components with different capacity limitations and sensitivity to interference. There is, to date, only limited support for the concentric model in the research literature, and it is limited to a number of specially designed tasks. Objective. In the present paper, we attempted to validate the concentric model by testing its major predictions using complex span and updating tasks in a number of experimental paradigms. Method. The model predictions were tested with the help of review of data obtained primarily in our own experiments in several research domains, including Sternberg’s additive factors method; factor structure of WM; serial position effects in WM; and WM performance in a sample with episodic long-term memory deficits. Results. Predictions generated by the concentric model were shown to hold in all these domains. In addition, several new properties of WM were identified. In particular, we recently found that WM indeed contains a processing component which functions independent of storage components. In turn, the latter were found to form a storage hierarchy which balances fast access to selected items, with the storing of large amounts of potentially relevant information. Processing and storage in WM were found to be dependent on shared cognitive resources which are dynamically allocated between WM components according to actual task requirements. e implications of these findings for the theory of WM are discussed. Conclusion. The concentric model was shown to be valid with respect to standard WM tasks. The concentric model others promising research perspectives for the study of higher- order cognition, including underlying

  16. An ergonomics study of computerized emergency operating procedures: Presentation style, task complexity, and training level

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Xu Song; Song Fei [Department of Industrial Engineering, Tsinghua University, Beijing 100084 (China); Li Zhizhong [Department of Industrial Engineering, Tsinghua University, Beijing 100084 (China)], E-mail: zzli@tsinghua.edu.cn; Zhao Qianyi; Luo Wei [Department of Industrial Engineering, Tsinghua University, Beijing 100084 (China); He Xuhong [Scanpower Risk Management China Inc., Towercrest International Plaza, No. 3 Maizidian West Road, Chaoyang District, Beijing 100016 (China); Salvendy, Gavriel [Department of Industrial Engineering, Tsinghua University, Beijing 100084 (China)

    2008-10-15

    Emergency operating procedures (EOPs) are widely used in nuclear power plants (NPPs). With the development of information technology, computerized EOPs are taking the place of paper-based ones. Unlike paper-based EOPs, the industrial practice of computerized EOPs is still quite limited. Ergonomics issues of computerized EOPs have not been studied adequately. This study focuses on the effects of EOP presentation style, task complexity, and training level on the performance of the operators in the execution of computerized EOPs. One simulated computerized EOP system was developed to present two EOPs, each with different task complexity levels, by two presentation styles (Style A: one- and two-dimensional flowcharts combination; Style B: two-dimensional flowchart and success logic tree combination). Forty subjects participated in the experiment of EOP execution using the simulated system. Statistical analysis of the experimental results indicates that: (1) complexity, presentation style, and training level all can significantly influence the error rate. High-complexity tasks and lack of sufficient training may lead to a higher error rate. Style B caused a significantly higher error rate than style A did in the skilled phase. So the designers of computerized procedures should take the presentation styles of EOPs into account. (2) Task complexity and training level can significantly influence operation time. No significant difference was found in operation time between the two presentation styles. (3) Training level can also significantly influence the subjective workload of EOPs operations. This implies that adequate training is very important for the performance of computerized EOPs even if emergency responses with computerized EOPs are much more simple and easy than that with paper-based EOPs.

  17. Study on DSM-based task planning of product cooperative development

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    2008-01-01

    The results of analyzing the managerial characteristics and complexity of product cooperative development suggest that task planning is an important aspect for process management of product cooperative development and the method for planning tasks should be able to model the dependency between tasks and iterations during the development process. In this paper, a DSM-based method and its corresponding optimization algorithms are developed. At first the coupled task sets and uncoupled task sets are identified...

  18. The Role of Control Functions in Mentalizing: Dual-Task Studies of Theory of Mind and Executive Function

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bull, Rebecca; Phillips, Louise H.; Conway, Claire A.

    2008-01-01

    Conflicting evidence has arisen from correlational studies regarding the role of executive control functions in Theory of Mind. The current study used dual-task manipulations of executive functions (inhibition, updating and switching) to investigate the role of these control functions in mental state and non-mental state tasks. The "Eyes"…

  19. Intraoperative Noise Increases Perceived Task Load and Fatigue in Anesthesiology Residents: A Simulation-Based Study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    McNeer, Richard R; Bennett, Christopher L; Dudaryk, Roman

    2016-02-01

    Operating rooms are identified as being one of the noisiest of clinical environments, and intraoperative noise is associated with adverse effects on staff and patient safety. Simulation-based experiments would offer controllable and safe venues for investigating this noise problem. However, realistic simulation of the clinical auditory environment is rare in current simulators. Therefore, we retrofitted our operating room simulator to be able to produce immersive auditory simulations with the use of typical sound sources encountered during surgeries. Then, we tested the hypothesis that anesthesia residents would perceive greater task load and fatigue while being given simulated lunch breaks in noisy environments rather than in quiet ones. As a secondary objective, we proposed and tested the plausibility of a novel psychometric instrument for the assessment of stress. In this simulation-based, randomized, repeated-measures, crossover study, 2 validated psychometric survey instruments, the NASA Task Load Index (NASA-TLX), composed of 6 items, and the Swedish Occupational Fatigue Inventory (SOFI), composed of 5 items, were used to assess perceived task load and fatigue, respectively, in first-year anesthesia residents. Residents completed the psychometric instruments after being given lunch breaks in quiet and noisy intraoperative environments (soundscapes). The effects of soundscape grouping on the psychometric instruments and their comprising items were analyzed with a split-plot analysis. A model for a new psychometric instrument for measuring stress that combines the NASA-TLX and SOFI instruments was proposed, and a factor analysis was performed on the collected data to determine the model's plausibility. Twenty residents participated in this study. Multivariate analysis of variance showed an effect of soundscape grouping on the combined NASA-TLX and SOFI instrument items (P = 0.003) and the comparisons of univariate item reached significance for the NASA Temporal

  20. WMU Power Generation Study Task 2.0 Corn Cob Co-Combustion Study: Final Report

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Folkedahl, Bruce [Folkedahl Consulting, Inc., Willmar, MN (United States)

    2009-12-01

    Much attention has been focused on renewable energy use in large-scale utilities and very small scale distributed energy systems. However, there is little information available regarding renewable energy options for midscale municipal utilities. The Willmar Municipal Utilities Corn Cob-Coal Co-Combustion Project was initiated to investigate opportunities available for small to midscale municipal utilities to "go green". The overall goal of the Project was to understand the current renewable energy research and energy efficiency projects that are or have been implemented at both larger and smaller scale and determine the applicability to midscale municipal utilities. More specific objectives for Task 2.0 of this project were to determine the technical feasibility of co-combusting com cobs with coal in the existing WMU boiler, and to identify any regulatory issues that might need to be addressed if WMU were to obtain a significant portion of its heat from such co-combustion. This report addresses the issues as laid out in the study proposal. The study investigated the feasibility of and demonstrated the technical effectiveness of co-combusting corn cobs with coal in the Willmar Municipal Utilities stoker boiler steam generation power plant. The results of the WMU Co-Combustion Project will serve as a model for other midscale utilities who wish to use corn cobs to generate renewable electrical energy. As a result of the Co-Combustion Project, the WMU plans to upgrade their stoker boiler to accept whole corn cobs as well as other types of biomass, while still allowing the fuel delivery system to use 100% coal as needed. Benefits of co-combustion will include: energy security, reduced Hg and CO2 air emissions, improved ash chemistry, potential future carbon credit sales, an immediate positive effect on the local economy, and positive attention focused on the WMU and the City of Willmar. The first step in the study was to complete a feasibility analysis. The

  1. Ferrocyanide Safety Project Task 3 Ferrocyanide Aging Studies FY 1993 annual report

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Lilga, M.A.; Lumetta, M.R.; Schiefelbein, G.F.

    1993-10-01

    The Hanford Ferrocyanide Task Team is addressing issues involving ferrocyanide precipitates in single-shell waste storage tanks (SSTs), in particular the storage of waste in a safe manner. This Task Team, composed of researchers from Westinghouse Hanford Company (WHC), Pacific Northwest Laboratory (PNL), and outside consultants, was formed in response to the need for an updated analysis of safety questions about the Hanford ferrocyanide tanks. The Ferrocyanides Safety Project at PNL is part of the Waste Tank Safety Program led by WHC. The overall purpose of the WHC program, sponsored by the US Department of Energy's Tank Farm Project Office, is to (1) maintain the ferrocyanide tanks with minimal risk of an accident, (2) select one or more strategies to assure safe storage, and (3) close out the unreviewed safety question (USQ). This annual report gives the results of the work conducted by PNL in FY 1993 on Task 3, Ferrocyanides Aging Studies, which deals with the aging behavior of simulated ferrocyanide wastes. Aging processes include the dissolution and hydrolysis of nickel ferrocyanides in high pH aqueous solutions. Investigated were the effects of pH variation; ionic strength and sodium ion concentration; the presence of anions such as phosphate, carbonate, and nitrate; temperature; and gamma radiation on solubility of ferrocyanide materials including In-Farm-lA, Rev. 4 flowsheet-prepared Na 2 NiFe(CN) 6

  2. Gamma band oscillations under influence of bromazepam during a sensorimotor integration task: an EEG coherence study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Minc, Daniel; Machado, Sergio; Bastos, Victor Hugo; Machado, Dionis; Cunha, Marlo; Cagy, Mauricio; Budde, Henning; Basile, Luis; Piedade, Roberto; Ribeiro, Pedro

    2010-01-18

    The goal of the present study was to explore the dynamics of the gamma band using the coherence of the quantitative electroencephalography (qEEG) in a sensorimotor integration task and the influence of the neuromodulator bromazepam on the band behavior. Our hypothesis is that the needs of the typewriting task will demand the coupling of different brain areas, and that the gamma band will promote the binding of information. It is also expected that the neuromodulator will modify this coupling. The sample was composed of 39 healthy subjects. We used a randomized double-blind design and divided subjects into three groups: placebo (n=13), bromazepam 3mg (n=13) and bromazepam 6 mg (n=13). The two-way ANOVA analysis demonstrated a main effect for the factors condition (i.e., C4-CZ electrode pair) and moment (i.e., C3-CZ, C3-C4 and C4-CZ pairs of electrodes). We propose that the gamma band plays an important role in the binding among several brain areas in complex motor tasks and that each hemisphere is influenced in a different manner by the neuromodulator. (c) 2009 Elsevier Ireland Ltd. All rights reserved.

  3. Performance environment and nested task constraints influence long jump approach run: a preliminary study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Panteli, Flora; Smirniotou, Athanasia; Theodorou, Apostolos

    2016-01-01

    The purpose of the study was to investigate possible changes at step pattern and technical performance of the long jump approach run in seven young long jumpers by modifying the performance environment (long jump runway versus track lane) and the nested actions (run-through with take-off versus complete long jump). Our findings suggest that the step pattern and technical aspects of the approach run are affected by environmental context and nested task constraints. In terms of environmental context, it appears that practising the training routine of run-through followed by take-off on the long jump runway allows athletes to simulate competition conditions in terms of step regulation and technical efficacy. The task of run-through followed by take-off on the track lane failed to initiate visual perception, step regulation and technical efficiency at the steps preceding the instant of take-off. In terms of nested task constraints, when run-ups were followed by jump for distance instead of only a take-off, a higher level of consistency was achieved and step regulation was based on perception-action coupling. Practising long jump run-up accuracy at a setting not containing the informational elements of the performance environment fails to develop the key elements of the skill.

  4. Functional network centrality in obesity: A resting-state and task fMRI study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    García-García, Isabel; Jurado, María Ángeles; Garolera, Maite; Marqués-Iturria, Idoia; Horstmann, Annette; Segura, Bàrbara; Pueyo, Roser; Sender-Palacios, María José; Vernet-Vernet, Maria; Villringer, Arno; Junqué, Carme; Margulies, Daniel S; Neumann, Jane

    2015-09-30

    Obesity is associated with structural and functional alterations in brain areas that are often functionally distinct and anatomically distant. This suggests that obesity is associated with differences in functional connectivity of regions distributed across the brain. However, studies addressing whole brain functional connectivity in obesity remain scarce. Here, we compared voxel-wise degree centrality and eigenvector centrality between participants with obesity (n=20) and normal-weight controls (n=21). We analyzed resting state and task-related fMRI data acquired from the same individuals. Relative to normal-weight controls, participants with obesity exhibited reduced degree centrality in the right middle frontal gyrus in the resting-state condition. During the task fMRI condition, obese participants exhibited less degree centrality in the left middle frontal gyrus and the lateral occipital cortex along with reduced eigenvector centrality in the lateral occipital cortex and occipital pole. Our results highlight the central role of the middle frontal gyrus in the pathophysiology of obesity, a structure involved in several brain circuits signaling attention, executive functions and motor functions. Additionally, our analysis suggests the existence of task-dependent reduced centrality in occipital areas; regions with a role in perceptual processes and that are profoundly modulated by attention. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Ireland Ltd. All rights reserved.

  5. Aims and tasks in parental caregiving for children receiving palliative care at home: a qualitative study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Verberne, Lisa M; Kars, Marijke C; Schouten-van Meeteren, Antoinette Y N; Bosman, Diederik K; Colenbrander, Derk A; Grootenhuis, Martha A; van Delden, Johannes J M

    2017-03-01

    In paediatric palliative care (PPC), parents are confronted with increasing caregiving demands. More children are cared for at home, and the need for PPC of children is lengthened due to technical and medical improvements. Therefore, a clear understanding of the content of parental caregiving in PPC becomes increasingly important. The objective is to gain insight into parental caregiving based on the lived experience of parents with a child with a life-limiting disease. An interpretative qualitative study using thematic analysis was performed. Single or repeated interviews were undertaken with 42 parents of 24 children with a malignant or non-malignant disease, receiving PPC. Based on their ambition to be a 'good parent', parents caring for a child with a life-limiting disease strived for three aims: controlled symptoms and controlled disease, a life worth living for their ill child and family balance. These aims resulted in four tasks that parents performed: providing basic and complex care, organising good quality care and treatment, making sound decisions while managing risks and organising a good family life. Parents need early explanation from professionals about balancing between their aims and the related tasks to get a grip on their situation and to prevent becoming overburdened. What is Known: • In paediatric palliative care, parents are confronted with increasing caregiving demands. • Parenting is often approached from the perspective of stress. What is New: • Parents strive for three aims: controlled symptoms and controlled disease, a life worth living for their child and family balance. • Parents perform four tasks: providing basic and complex care, organising good quality care, making decisions while managing risks and organising a good family life. • Professionals need insight into the parents' aims and tasks from the parental perspective to strengthen parents' resilience.

  6. Study on EEG power and coherence in patients with mild cognitive impairment during working memory task

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    JIANG Zheng-yan

    2005-01-01

    To investigate the features of electroencephalography (EEG) power and coherence at rest and during a working memory task of patients with mild cognitive impairment (MCI). Thirty-five patients (17 males, 18 females; 52~71 years old) and 34 sex- and age-matched controls (17 males, 17 females; 51~63 years old) were recruited in the present study. Mini-Mental State Examination (MMSE) of 35 patients with MCI and 34 normal controls revealed that the scores of MCI patients did not differ significantly from those of normal controls (P>0.05). Then, EEGs at rest and during working memory task with three levels of working memory load were recorded. The EEG power was computed over 10 channels: right and left frontal (F3, F4), central (C3,C4), parietal (P3, P4), temporal (TS, T6) and occipital (O1, O2); inter-hemispheric coherences were computed from five electrode pairs of F3-F4, C3-C4, P3-P4, T5-T6 and O1-O2 for delta (1.0~3.5 Hz), theta (4.0~7.5 Hz), alpha-1 (8.0~10.0 Hz), alpha-2 (10.5~13.0 Hz), beta-1 (13.5~18.0 Hz) and beta-2 (18.5~30.0 Hz) frequency bands. All values of the EEG power of MCI patients were found to be higher than those of normal controls at rest and during working memory tasks. Furthermore, the values of EEG power in the theta, alpha-1, alpha-2 and beta-1 bands of patients with MCI were significantly high (P<0.05) in comparison with those of normal controls. Correlation analysis indicated a significant negative correlation between the EEG powers and MMSE scores. In addition, during working memory tasks, the EEG coherences in all bands were significantly higher in the MCI group in comparison with those in the control group (P<0.05). However, there was no significant difference in EEG coherences between two groups at rest. These findings comprise evidence that MCI patients have higher EEG power at rest, and higher EEG power and coherence during working conditions. It suggests that MCI may be associated with compensatory processes at

  7. A Tentative Study on the Task-Based Teaching of Writing to English Majors in Chinese Settings

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhaochun, Sun

    2015-01-01

    Under task-based learning (TBL) framework, language learners engage in purposeful, problem-oriented, and outcome-driven tasks that are comparable to traditional teaching methods which focus only on the correctness of grammar. In this study, the author employs Jane Willis' TBL framework and examines its effects on the improvement of EFL learners'…

  8. Task and work performance on Skylab missions 2, 3, and 4: Time and motion study: Experiment M151

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kubis, J. F.; Mclaughlin, E. J.; Jackson, J. M.; Rusnak, R.; Mcbride, G. H.; Saxon, S. V.

    1977-01-01

    Human task performance was evaluated under weightlessness conditions during long duration space flight in order to study the characteristics of the adaptation function. Results show that despite pronounced variability in training schedules and in initial reaction to the Skylab environment, in-flight task performance was relatively equivalent among Skylab crews, and behavioral performance continued to improve from beginning to end of all missions.

  9. Driving context influences drivers' decision to engage in visual-manual phone tasks: Evidence from a naturalistic driving study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tivesten, Emma; Dozza, Marco

    2015-06-01

    Visual-manual (VM) phone tasks (i.e., texting, dialing, reading) are associated with an increased crash/near-crash risk. This study investigated how the driving context influences drivers' decisions to engage in VM phone tasks in naturalistic driving. Video-recordings of 1,432 car trips were viewed to identify VM phone tasks and passenger presence. Video, vehicle signals, and map data were used to classify driving context (i.e., curvature, other vehicles) before and during the VM phone tasks (N=374). Vehicle signals (i.e., speed, yaw rate, forward radar) were available for all driving. VM phone tasks were more likely to be initiated while standing still, and less likely while driving at high speeds, or when a passenger was present. Lead vehicle presence did not influence how likely it was that a VM phone task was initiated, but the drivers adjusted their task timing to situations when the lead vehicle was increasing speed, resulting in increasing time headway. The drivers adjusted task timing until after making sharp turns and lane change maneuvers. In contrast to previous driving simulator studies, there was no evidence of drivers reducing speed as a consequence of VM phone task engagement. The results show that experienced drivers use information about current and upcoming driving context to decide when to engage in VM phone tasks. However, drivers may fail to sufficiently increase safety margins to allow time to respond to possible unpredictable events (e.g., lead vehicle braking). Advanced driver assistance systems should facilitate and possibly boost drivers' self-regulating behavior. For instance, they might recognize when appropriate adaptive behavior is missing and advise or alert accordingly. The results from this study could also inspire training programs for novice drivers, or locally classify roads in terms of the risk associated with secondary task engagement while driving. Copyright © 2015. Published by Elsevier Ltd.

  10. Positron computed tomography studies of cerebral metabolic responses to complex motor tasks

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Phelps, M.E.; Mazziotta, J.C.

    1984-01-01

    Human motor system organization was explored in 8 right-handed male subjects using /sup 18/F-fluorodeoxyglucose and positron computed tomography to measure cerebral glucose metabolism. Five subjects had triple studies (eyes closed) including: control (hold pen in right hand without moving), normal size writing (subject repeatedly writes name) and large (10-15 X normal) name writing. In these studies normal and large size writing had a similar distribution of metabolic responses when compared to control studies. Activations (percent change from control) were in the range of 12-20% and occurred in the striatum bilaterally > contralateral Rolandic cortex > contralateral thalamus. No significant activations were observed in the ipsilateral thalamus, Rolandic cortex or cerebellum (supplementary motor cortex was not examined). The magnitude of the metabolic response in the striatum was greater with the large versus normal sized writing. This differential response may be due to an increased number and topographic distribution of neurons responding with the same average activity between tasks or an increase in the functional activity of the same neuronal population between the two tasks (present spatial resolution inadequate to differentiate). When subjects (N=3) performed novel sequential finger movements, the maximal metabolic response was in the contralateral Rolandic cortex > striatum. Such studies provide a means of exploring human motor system organization, motor learning and provide a basis for examining patients with motor system disorders

  11. CETF Space Station payload pointing system design and analysis feasibility study. [Critical Evaluation Task Force

    Science.gov (United States)

    Smagala, Tom; Mcglew, Dave

    1988-01-01

    The expected pointing performance of an attached payload coupled to the Critical Evaluation Task Force Space Station via a payload pointing system (PPS) is determined. The PPS is a 3-axis gimbal which provides the capability for maintaining inertial pointing of a payload in the presence of disturbances associated with the Space Station environment. A system where the axes of rotation were offset from the payload center of mass (CM) by 10 in. in the Z axis was studied as well as a system having the payload CM offset by only 1 inch. There is a significant improvement in pointing performance when going from the 10 in. to the 1 in. gimbal offset.

  12. Effect of Tai Chi Training on Dual-Tasking Performance That Involves Stepping Down among Stroke Survivors: A Pilot Study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chan, Wing-Nga; Tsang, William Wai-Nam

    2017-01-01

    Descending stairs demands attention and neuromuscular control, especially with dual-tasking. Studies have demonstrated that stroke often degrades a survivor's ability to descend stairs. Tai Chi has been shown to improve dual-tasking performance of healthy older adults, but no such study has been conducted in stroke survivors. This study investigated the effect of Tai Chi training on dual-tasking performance that involved stepping down and compared it with that of conventional exercise among stroke survivors. Subjects were randomized into Tai Chi ( n = 9), conventional exercise ( n = 8), and control ( n = 9) groups. Those in the former two groups received 12-week training. Assessments included auditory Stroop test, stepping down test, and dual-tasking test involving both simultaneously. They were evaluated before training (time-1), after training (time-2), and one month after training (time-3). Tai Chi group showed significant improvement in the auditory Stroop test from time-1 to time-3 and the performance was significantly better than that of the conventional exercise group in time-3. No significant effect was found in the stepping down task or dual-tasking in the control group. These results suggest a beneficial effect of Tai Chi training on cognition among stroke survivors without compromising physical task performance in dual-tasking. The effect was better than the conventional exercise group. Nevertheless, further research with a larger sample is warranted.

  13. Effect of Tai Chi Training on Dual-Tasking Performance That Involves Stepping Down among Stroke Survivors: A Pilot Study

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Wing-Nga Chan

    2017-01-01

    Full Text Available Descending stairs demands attention and neuromuscular control, especially with dual-tasking. Studies have demonstrated that stroke often degrades a survivor’s ability to descend stairs. Tai Chi has been shown to improve dual-tasking performance of healthy older adults, but no such study has been conducted in stroke survivors. This study investigated the effect of Tai Chi training on dual-tasking performance that involved stepping down and compared it with that of conventional exercise among stroke survivors. Subjects were randomized into Tai Chi (n=9, conventional exercise (n=8, and control (n=9 groups. Those in the former two groups received 12-week training. Assessments included auditory Stroop test, stepping down test, and dual-tasking test involving both simultaneously. They were evaluated before training (time-1, after training (time-2, and one month after training (time-3. Tai Chi group showed significant improvement in the auditory Stroop test from time-1 to time-3 and the performance was significantly better than that of the conventional exercise group in time-3. No significant effect was found in the stepping down task or dual-tasking in the control group. These results suggest a beneficial effect of Tai Chi training on cognition among stroke survivors without compromising physical task performance in dual-tasking. The effect was better than the conventional exercise group. Nevertheless, further research with a larger sample is warranted.

  14. Association of Dual-Task Gait With Incident Dementia in Mild Cognitive Impairment: Results From the Gait and Brain Study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Montero-Odasso, Manuel M; Sarquis-Adamson, Yanina; Speechley, Mark; Borrie, Michael J; Hachinski, Vladimir C; Wells, Jennie; Riccio, Patricia M; Schapira, Marcelo; Sejdic, Ervin; Camicioli, Richard M; Bartha, Robert; McIlroy, William E; Muir-Hunter, Susan

    2017-07-01

    Gait performance is affected by neurodegeneration in aging and has the potential to be used as a clinical marker for progression from mild cognitive impairment (MCI) to dementia. A dual-task gait test evaluating the cognitive-motor interface may predict dementia progression in older adults with MCI. To determine whether a dual-task gait test is associated with incident dementia in MCI. The Gait and Brain Study is an ongoing prospective cohort study of community-dwelling older adults that enrolled 112 older adults with MCI. Participants were followed up for 6 years, with biannual visits including neurologic, cognitive, and gait assessments. Data were collected from July 2007 to March 2016. Incident all-cause dementia was the main outcome measure, and single- and dual-task gait velocity and dual-task gait costs were the independent variables. A neuropsychological test battery was used to assess cognition. Gait velocity was recorded under single-task and 3 separate dual-task conditions using an electronic walkway. Dual-task gait cost was defined as the percentage change between single- and dual-task gait velocities: ([single-task gait velocity - dual-task gait velocity]/ single-task gait velocity) × 100. Cox proportional hazard models were used to estimate the association between risk of progression to dementia and the independent variables, adjusted for age, sex, education, comorbidities, and cognition. Among 112 study participants with MCI, mean (SD) age was 76.6 (6.9) years, 55 were women (49.1%), and 27 progressed to dementia (24.1%), with an incidence rate of 121 per 1000 person-years. Slow single-task gait velocity (gait cost while counting backward (HR, 3.79; 95% CI, 1.57-9.15; P = .003) and naming animals (HR, 2.41; 95% CI, 1.04-5.59; P = .04) were associated with dementia progression (incidence rate, 155 per 1000 person-years). The models remained robust after adjusting by baseline cognition except for dual-task gait cost when dichotomized. Dual-task

  15. Decision and dopaminergic system: An ERPs study of Iowa Gambling Task in Parkinson’s disease

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Daniela eMapelli

    2014-07-01

    Full Text Available Recent researches reported behavioural and emotional impairment in Parkinson’s disease (PD, even in the earliest stages. This impairment affects also decision-making and learning processes. The Iowa Gambling Task (IGT is commonly used to examine the decision-making capacity. The purpose of the present study was to investigate the neural correlates of feedback evaluation in the decision-making process into a learning context, using IGT and event-related potentials (ERPs in a group of non-demented medicated PD patients. Fifteen PD patients and 15 healthy controls were recruited for the study. PD patients were administrated a basic neuropsychological assessment oriented to exclude cognitive impairments. Both groups underwent the computerized IGT during electroencephalography (EEG registration. To analyse ERPs, continuous EEG data were epoched within a time-window starting 1000 ms before and ending 1000 ms after feedback presentation and averaged separately for positive (i.e. win condition and negative (i.e. loss condition feedbacks. Behavioural data revealed a significant lower performance of PD patients (p<.05 compared with the controls. While controls demonstrated a correct feedback evaluation, PD patients did not show any learning, selecting more disadvantageous decks even in the last part of task. Furthermore, ERPs results revealed that controls showed a significant difference (p<.05 in ERPs morphology recorded after the win and the loss conditions, suggesting that positive and negative feedbacks were differently evaluated and processed. PD patients showed a different pattern: their ERPs morphology was the same for positive and negative feedback. Interestingly, our ERPs results suggest that in PD patients an incorrect evaluation of context-relevant outcomes could be the reason of a poor performance in decision-making tasks, and could explain cognitive and behavioural problems related to impulse control disorder.

  16. Cortical activation during power grip task with pneumatic pressure gauge: an fMRI study

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mohamad, M.; Mardan, N. H.; Ismail, S. S.

    2017-05-01

    Aging is associated with a decline in cognitive and motor function. But, the relationships with motor performance are less well understood. In this study, functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) was used to assess cortical activation in older adults. This study employed power grip task that utilised block paradigm consisted of alternate 30s rest and active. A visual cue was used to pace the hand grip movement that clenched a cylindrical rubber bulb connected with pressure pneumatic gauge that measure the pressure (Psi). The objective of this study is determined the brain areas activated during motor task and the correlation between percentage signal change of each motor area (BA 4 and 6) and hand grip pressure. Result showed there was a significant difference in mean percentage signal change in BA 4 and BA 6 in both hemispheres and negative correlation obtained in BA 4 and BA 6. These results indicate that a reduced ability in the motor networks contribute to age-related decline in motor performance.

  17. Cortical activation during power grip task with pneumatic pressure gauge: an fMRI study

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Mohamad, M; Ismail, S S; Mardan, N H

    2017-01-01

    Aging is associated with a decline in cognitive and motor function. But, the relationships with motor performance are less well understood. In this study, functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) was used to assess cortical activation in older adults. This study employed power grip task that utilised block paradigm consisted of alternate 30s rest and active. A visual cue was used to pace the hand grip movement that clenched a cylindrical rubber bulb connected with pressure pneumatic gauge that measure the pressure (Psi). The objective of this study is determined the brain areas activated during motor task and the correlation between percentage signal change of each motor area (BA 4 and 6) and hand grip pressure. Result showed there was a significant difference in mean percentage signal change in BA 4 and BA 6 in both hemispheres and negative correlation obtained in BA 4 and BA 6. These results indicate that a reduced ability in the motor networks contribute to age-related decline in motor performance. (paper)

  18. Ferrocyanide safety project task 3 ferrocyanide aging studies FY 1994 annual report

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Lilga, M.A.; Alderson, E.V.; Kowalski, D.J.; Lumetta, M.R.; Schiefelbein, G.F.

    1994-09-01

    The research performed for this project is part of an effort begun in the mid-1980s to characterize the materials stored in the single-shell waste storage tanks (SSTs) at the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) Hanford Site. Various radioactive wastes from defense operations have accumulated at the Hanford Site in underground waste tanks since the early 1940s. The goal of the Aging Studies task is to understand the long-term chemical and radiolytic behavior of ferrocyanide tank wastes in the SST environments. In turn, this information provides baseline data that will be useful as actual SST samples are obtained and analyzed. The results of aging studies will directly assist in determining which strategy will assure safe storage of the ferrocyanide waste in the tanks and how the ferrocyanide safety issue can be resolved. This report contains the results of FY 1994 research for the Aging Studies task, which focused on the hydrolysis of ferrocyanide waste simulants in aqueous base. Hydrolysis was investigated in 2M NaOH as a function of temperature, applied gamma dose rate, and soluble Fe(CN) 6 -4 concentration. A hydrolysis experiment was conducted at pH 10 and another in the presence of aluminum. In addition, experiments investigating cesium ion exchange in competition with sodium nickel ferrocyanide dissolution were conducted

  19. Report of the first interim meeting of the Seabed Working Group Engineering Studies Task Group

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Talbert, D.M.

    1982-02-01

    The first interim meeting of the Engineering Studies Task Group (ESTG) was held at the Delft Soil Mechanics Laboratory, Delft, The Netherlands, on 21-24 September 1981. The main business of the meeting was the development of a network analysis for the ESTG. Significant progress was made; however, substantial further development remains to be accomplished. Other items discussed were (1) progress relevant to engineering studies made in the various national programs since the sixth annual meeting of the Seabed Working Group (SWG) held in Paris, February, 1981; (2) the ESTG Boundary Conditions and Scope of Work as previously defined at the Paris meeting; (3) the Draft II SWG Five-Year Plan; (4) the deep ocean drilling proposal made by the Site Selection Task Group at the Paris meeting and expanded upon at their May, 1981, meeting; and (5) a recent compilation of data from the Nares Abyssal Plain arising from the US Program studies. Finally, consideration was given to a plan for continued work by the ESTG. A brief discussion of the principal items is given. The current state of the network analysis is shown

  20. Examining the Use of a Visual Analytics System for Sensemaking Tasks: Case Studies with Domain Experts.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kang, Youn-Ah; Stasko, J

    2012-12-01

    While the formal evaluation of systems in visual analytics is still relatively uncommon, particularly rare are case studies of prolonged system use by domain analysts working with their own data. Conducting case studies can be challenging, but it can be a particularly effective way to examine whether visual analytics systems are truly helping expert users to accomplish their goals. We studied the use of a visual analytics system for sensemaking tasks on documents by six analysts from a variety of domains. We describe their application of the system along with the benefits, issues, and problems that we uncovered. Findings from the studies identify features that visual analytics systems should emphasize as well as missing capabilities that should be addressed. These findings inform design implications for future systems.

  1. Applying an expectancy-value model to study motivators for work-task based information seeking

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Sigaard, Karen Tølbøl; Skov, Mette

    2015-01-01

    on the theory of expectancy-value and on the operationalisation used when the model was first developed. Data for the analysis were collected from a sample of seven informants working as consultants in Danish municipalities. Each participant filled out a questionnaire, kept a log book for a week...... for interpersonal and internal sources increased when the task had high-value motivation or low-expectancy motivation or both. Research limitations/implications: The study is based on a relatively small sample and considers only one motivation theory. This should be addressed in future research along...... with a broadening of the studied group to involve other professions than municipality consultants. Originality/value: Motivational theories from the field of psychology have been used sparsely in studies of information seeking. This study operationalises and verifies such a theory based on a theoretical adaptation...

  2. Comparing 15D Valuation Studies in Norway and Finland-Challenges When Combining Information from Several Valuation Tasks.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Michel, Yvonne Anne; Augestad, Liv Ariane; Rand, Kim

    2018-04-01

    The 15D is a generic preference-based health-related quality-of-life instrument developed in Finland. Values for the 15D instrument are estimated by combining responses to three distinct valuation tasks. The impact of how these tasks are combined is relatively unexplored. To compare 15D valuation studies conducted in Norway and Finland in terms of scores assigned in the valuation tasks and resulting value algorithms, and to discuss the contributions of each task and the algorithm estimation procedure to observed differences. Norwegian and Finnish scores from the three valuation tasks were compared using independent samples t tests and Lin concordance correlation coefficients. Covariance between tasks was assessed using Pearson product-moment correlations. Norwegian and Finnish value algorithms were compared using concordance correlation coefficients, total ranges, and ranges for individual dimensions. Observed differences were assessed using minimal important difference. Mean scores in the main valuation task were strikingly similar between the two countries, whereas the final value algorithms were less similar. The largest differences between Norway and Finland were observed for depression, vision, and mental function. 15D algorithms are a product of combining scores from three valuation tasks by use of methods involving multiplication. This procedure used to combine scores from the three tasks by multiplication serves to amplify variance from each task. From relatively similar responses in Norway and Finland, diverging value algorithms are created. We propose to simplify the 15D algorithm estimation procedure by using only one of the valuation tasks. Copyright © 2018 International Society for Pharmacoeconomics and Outcomes Research (ISPOR). Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  3. Gaze training enhances laparoscopic technical skill acquisition and multi-tasking performance: a randomized, controlled study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wilson, Mark R; Vine, Samuel J; Bright, Elizabeth; Masters, Rich S W; Defriend, David; McGrath, John S

    2011-12-01

    The operating room environment is replete with stressors and distractions that increase the attention demands of what are already complex psychomotor procedures. Contemporary research in other fields (e.g., sport) has revealed that gaze training interventions may support the development of robust movement skills. This current study was designed to examine the utility of gaze training for technical laparoscopic skills and to test performance under multitasking conditions. Thirty medical trainees with no laparoscopic experience were divided randomly into one of three treatment groups: gaze trained (GAZE), movement trained (MOVE), and discovery learning/control (DISCOVERY). Participants were fitted with a Mobile Eye gaze registration system, which measures eye-line of gaze at 25 Hz. Training consisted of ten repetitions of the "eye-hand coordination" task from the LAP Mentor VR laparoscopic surgical simulator while receiving instruction and video feedback (specific to each treatment condition). After training, all participants completed a control test (designed to assess learning) and a multitasking transfer test, in which they completed the procedure while performing a concurrent tone counting task. Not only did the GAZE group learn more quickly than the MOVE and DISCOVERY groups (faster completion times in the control test), but the performance difference was even more pronounced when multitasking. Differences in gaze control (target locking fixations), rather than tool movement measures (tool path length), underpinned this performance advantage for GAZE training. These results suggest that although the GAZE intervention focused on training gaze behavior only, there were indirect benefits for movement behaviors and performance efficiency. Additionally, focusing on a single external target when learning, rather than on complex movement patterns, may have freed-up attentional resources that could be applied to concurrent cognitive tasks.

  4. A Study of Recurrent and Convolutional Neural Networks in the Native Language Identification Task

    KAUST Repository

    Werfelmann, Robert

    2018-05-24

    Native Language Identification (NLI) is the task of predicting the native language of an author from their text written in a second language. The idea is to find writing habits that transfer from an author’s native language to their second language. Many approaches to this task have been studied, from simple word frequency analysis, to analyzing grammatical and spelling mistakes to find patterns and traits that are common between different authors of the same native language. This can be a very complex task, depending on the native language and the proficiency of the author’s second language. The most common approach that has seen very good results is based on the usage of n-gram features of words and characters. In this thesis, we attempt to extract lexical, grammatical, and semantic features from the sentences of non-native English essays using neural networks. The training and testing data was obtained from a large corpus of publicly available essays written by authors of several countries around the world. The neural network models consisted of Long Short-Term Memory and Convolutional networks using the sentences of each document as the input. Additional statistical features were generated from the text to complement the predictions of the neural networks, which were then used as feature inputs to a Support Vector Machine, making the final prediction. Results show that Long Short-Term Memory neural network can improve performance over a naive bag of words approach, but with a much smaller feature set. With more fine-tuning of neural network hyperparameters, these results will likely improve significantly.

  5. Exploring how individuals complete the choice tasks in a discrete choice experiment: an interview study

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jorien Veldwijk

    2016-04-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background To be able to make valid inferences on stated preference data from a Discrete Choice Experiment (DCE it is essential that researchers know if participants were actively involved, understood and interpreted the provided information correctly and whether they used complex decision strategies to make their choices and thereby acted in accordance with the continuity axiom. Methods During structured interviews, we explored how 70 participants evaluated and completed four discrete choice tasks aloud. Hereafter, additional questions were asked to further explore if participants understood the information that was provided to them and whether they used complex decision strategies (continuity axiom when making their choices. Two existing DCE questionnaires on rotavirus vaccination and prostate cancer-screening served as case studies. Results A large proportion of the participants was not able to repeat the exact definition of the risk attributes as explained to them in the introduction of the questionnaire. The majority of the participants preferred more optimal over less optimal risk attribute levels. Most participants (66 % mentioned three or more attributes when motivating their decisions, thereby acting in accordance with the continuity axiom. However, 16 out of 70 participants continuously mentioned less than three attributes when motivating their decision. Lower educated and less literate participants tended to mention less than three attributes when motivating their decision and used trading off between attributes less often as a decision-making strategy. Conclusion The majority of the participants seemed to have understood the provided information about the choice tasks, the attributes, and the levels. They used complex decision strategies (continuity axiom and are therefore capable to adequately complete a DCE. However, based on the participants’ age, educational level and health literacy additional, actions should be

  6. Cognitive impairment after traumatic brain injury: a functional magnetic resonance imaging study using the Stroop task

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Soeda, Akio; Iwama, Toru [Gifu University School of Medicine, Department of Neurosurgery, Gifu City (Japan); Nakashima, Toshihiko; Okumura, Ayumi; Shinoda, Jun [Kizawa Memorial Hospital, Chubu Medical Center for Prolonged Traumatic Brain Dysfunction, Department of Neurosurgery, Minokamo (Japan); Kuwata, Kazuo [Gifu University School of Medicine, Department of Biochemistry and Biophysics, Gifu (Japan)

    2005-07-01

    The anterior cingulate cortex (ACC) plays a key role in cognition, motor function, and emotion processing. However, little is known about how traumatic brain injury (TBI) affects the ACC system. Our purpose was to compare, by functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) studies, the patterns of cortical activation in patients with cognitive impairment after TBI and those of normal subjects. Cortical activation maps of 11 right-handed healthy control subjects and five TBI patients with cognitive impairment were recorded in response to a Stroop task during a block-designed fMRI experiment. Statistical parametric mapping (SPM99) was used for individual subjects and group analysis. In TBI patients and controls, cortical activation, found in similar regions of the frontal, occipital, and parietal lobes, resembled patterns of activation documented in previous neuroimaging studies of the Stroop task in healthy controls. However, the TBI patients showed a relative decrease in ACC activity compared with the controls. Cognitive impairment in TBI patients seems to be associated with alterations in functional cerebral activity, especially less activation of the ACC. These changes are probably the result of destruction of neural networks after diffuse axonal injury and may reflect cortical disinhibition attributable to disconnection or compensation for an inefficient cognitive process. (orig.)

  7. Space Station data system analysis/architecture study. Task 1: Functional requirements definition, DR-5

    Science.gov (United States)

    1985-01-01

    The initial task in the Space Station Data System (SSDS) Analysis/Architecture Study is the definition of the functional and key performance requirements for the SSDS. The SSDS is the set of hardware and software, both on the ground and in space, that provides the basic data management services for Space Station customers and systems. The primary purpose of the requirements development activity was to provide a coordinated, documented requirements set as a basis for the system definition of the SSDS and for other subsequent study activities. These requirements should also prove useful to other Space Station activities in that they provide an indication of the scope of the information services and systems that will be needed in the Space Station program. The major results of the requirements development task are as follows: (1) identification of a conceptual topology and architecture for the end-to-end Space Station Information Systems (SSIS); (2) development of a complete set of functional requirements and design drivers for the SSIS; (3) development of functional requirements and key performance requirements for the Space Station Data System (SSDS); and (4) definition of an operating concept for the SSIS. The operating concept was developed both from a Space Station payload customer and operator perspective in order to allow a requirements practicality assessment.

  8. Studying hemispheric lateralization during a Stroop task through near-infrared spectroscopy-based connectivity

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhang, Lei; Sun, Jinyan; Sun, Bailei; Luo, Qingming; Gong, Hui

    2014-05-01

    Near-infrared spectroscopy (NIRS) is a developing and promising functional brain imaging technology. Developing data analysis methods to effectively extract meaningful information from collected data is the major bottleneck in popularizing this technology. In this study, we measured hemodynamic activity of the prefrontal cortex (PFC) during a color-word matching Stroop task using NIRS. Hemispheric lateralization was examined by employing traditional activation and novel NIRS-based connectivity analyses simultaneously. Wavelet transform coherence was used to assess intrahemispheric functional connectivity. Spearman correlation analysis was used to examine the relationship between behavioral performance and activation/functional connectivity, respectively. In agreement with activation analysis, functional connectivity analysis revealed leftward lateralization for the Stroop effect and correlation with behavioral performance. However, functional connectivity was more sensitive than activation for identifying hemispheric lateralization. Granger causality was used to evaluate the effective connectivity between hemispheres. The results showed increased information flow from the left to the right hemispheres for the incongruent versus the neutral task, indicating a leading role of the left PFC. This study demonstrates that the NIRS-based connectivity can reveal the functional architecture of the brain more comprehensively than traditional activation, helping to better utilize the advantages of NIRS.

  9. Cognitive impairment after traumatic brain injury: a functional magnetic resonance imaging study using the Stroop task

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Soeda, Akio; Iwama, Toru; Nakashima, Toshihiko; Okumura, Ayumi; Shinoda, Jun; Kuwata, Kazuo

    2005-01-01

    The anterior cingulate cortex (ACC) plays a key role in cognition, motor function, and emotion processing. However, little is known about how traumatic brain injury (TBI) affects the ACC system. Our purpose was to compare, by functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) studies, the patterns of cortical activation in patients with cognitive impairment after TBI and those of normal subjects. Cortical activation maps of 11 right-handed healthy control subjects and five TBI patients with cognitive impairment were recorded in response to a Stroop task during a block-designed fMRI experiment. Statistical parametric mapping (SPM99) was used for individual subjects and group analysis. In TBI patients and controls, cortical activation, found in similar regions of the frontal, occipital, and parietal lobes, resembled patterns of activation documented in previous neuroimaging studies of the Stroop task in healthy controls. However, the TBI patients showed a relative decrease in ACC activity compared with the controls. Cognitive impairment in TBI patients seems to be associated with alterations in functional cerebral activity, especially less activation of the ACC. These changes are probably the result of destruction of neural networks after diffuse axonal injury and may reflect cortical disinhibition attributable to disconnection or compensation for an inefficient cognitive process. (orig.)

  10. Gazing toward humans: a study on water rescue dogs using the impossible task paradigm.

    Science.gov (United States)

    D'Aniello, Biagio; Scandurra, Anna; Prato-Previde, Emanuela; Valsecchi, Paola

    2015-01-01

    Various studies have assessed the role of life experiences, including learning opportunities, living conditions and the quality of dog-human relationships, in the use of human cues and problem-solving ability. The current study investigates how and to what extent training affects the behaviour of dogs and the communication of dogs with humans by comparing dogs trained for a water rescue service and untrained pet dogs in the impossible task paradigm. Twenty-three certified water rescue dogs (the water rescue group) and 17 dogs with no training experience (the untrained group) were tested using a modified version of the impossible task described by Marshall-Pescini et al. in 2009. The results demonstrated that the water rescue dogs directed their first gaze significantly more often towards the owner and spent more time gazing toward two people compared to the untrained pet dogs. There was no difference between the dogs of the two groups as far as in the amount of time spent gazing at the owner or the stranger; neither in the interaction with the apparatus attempting to obtain food. The specific training regime, aimed at promoting cooperation during the performance of water rescue, could account for the longer gazing behaviour shown toward people by the water rescue dogs and the priority of gazing toward the owner. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  11. Performance of patients with frontotemporal lobar degeneration on artistic tasks: A pilot study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Anauate, Maria Cristina; Bahia, Valéria Santoro; Nitrini, Ricardo; Radanovic, Marcia

    2014-01-01

    Several studies have addressed visuospatial and executive skills in artistic activities in Frontotemporal Lobar Degeneration (FTLD) and Alzheimer's disease (AD). To investigate the performance of FTLD patients compared to controls on two artistic tasks. Four FTLD patients with mean age of 57 (8.7) years and schooling of 12.2 (4.5) years plus 10 controls with mean age of 62.9 (8.6) years and schooling of 12.3 (4.6) years, were assessed using the Lowenstein Occupational Therapy Cognitive Assessment (LOTCA) and by a three-stage artistic protocol including visual observation, copying and collage, based on a Sisley painting. FTLD patients had lower scores than controls on Visuospatial Perception, Copy, Collage, Examiner's Observation, and Total, showing distinct patterns of performance according to FTLD sub-type: semantic PPA, nonfluent PPA and bvFTD. FTLD patients presented impairment in the visuospatial and executive skills required to perform artistic tasks. We demonstrated that the application of the instrument as a complimentary method for assessing cognitive skills in this group of patients is possible. Further studies addressing larger and more homogeneous samples of FTLD patients as well as other dementias are warranted.

  12. [Social exchange and inference: an experimental study with the Wason selection task].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hayashi, N

    2001-04-01

    Social contract theory (Cosmides, 1989) posits that the human mind was equipped with inference faculty specialized for cheater detection. Cosmides (1989) conducted a series of experiments employing the Wason selection task to demonstrate that her social contract theory could account for the content effects reported in the literature. The purpose of this study was to investigate the possibility that the results were due to experimental artifacts. In the current experiment, the subject was given two versions of the Wason task that contained no social exchange context, but included an instruction implying him/her to look for something, together with the cassava root and the abstract versions used by Cosmides (1989). Results showed that the two versions with no social exchange context produced the same response pattern observed in the original study. It may be concluded that the subject's perception of the rule as a social contract was not necessary to obtain the original results, and that an instruction implying that he/she should look for something was sufficient.

  13. Task Equivalence for Model and Human-Observer Comparisons in SPECT Localization Studies

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sen, Anando; Kalantari, Faraz; Gifford, Howard C.

    2016-06-01

    While mathematical model observers are intended for efficient assessment of medical imaging systems, their findings should be relevant for human observers as the primary clinical end users. We have investigated whether pursuing equivalence between the model and human-observer tasks can help ensure this goal. A localization receiver operating characteristic (LROC) study tested prostate lesion detection in simulated In-111 SPECT imaging with anthropomorphic phantoms. The test images were 2D slices extracted from reconstructed volumes. The iterative ordered sets expectation-maximization (OSEM) reconstruction algorithm was used with Gaussian postsmoothing. Variations in the number of iterations and the level of postfiltering defined the test strategies in the study. Human-observer performance was compared with that of a visual-search (VS) observer, a scanning channelized Hotelling observer, and a scanning channelized nonprewhitening (CNPW) observer. These model observers were applied with precise information about the target regions of interest (ROIs). ROI knowledge was a study variable for the human observers. In one study format, the humans read the SPECT image alone. With a dual-modality format, the SPECT image was presented alongside an anatomical image slice extracted from the density map of the phantom. Performance was scored by area under the LROC curve. The human observers performed significantly better with the dual-modality format, and correlation with the model observers was also improved. Given the human-observer data from the SPECT study format, the Pearson correlation coefficients for the model observers were 0.58 (VS), -0.12 (CH), and -0.23 (CNPW). The respective coefficients based on the human-observer data from the dual-modality study were 0.72, 0.27, and -0.11. These results point towards the continued development of the VS observer for enhancing task equivalence in model-observer studies.

  14. Study on DSM-based task planning of product cooperative development

    Institute of Scientific and Technical Information of China (English)

    Jiang Zengqiang; Liu Mingzhou; Zhao Han; Ge Maogen; Guo Jia

    2008-01-01

    The results of analyzing the managerial characteristics and complexity of product cooperative development suggest that task planning is an important aspect for process management of product cooperative development and the method for planning tasks should be able to model the dependency between tasks and iterations during the development process. In this paper, a DSM-based method and its corresponding optimization algorithms are developed. At first the coupled task sets and uncoupled task sets are identified, and the tasks are then optimized by the corresponding algorithms. The optimal tasks plan will reduce the development time and cost. Considering the practical requirements in real world, a Multilayer DSM is proposed, and its information communication techniques between DSM and traversing principle are described in details.

  15. Task-Based Language Teaching in Iran: A Study of EFL Teachers’ Perspectives

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Fatemeh Mahdavirad

    2017-12-01

    Full Text Available The present study aimed to examine EFL teachers' perceptions of task-based language teaching (TBLT in Iranian context. The data for the study were collected through questionnaires from a total of 160 teachers at 20 different language institutes in Iran. The data were analyzed quantitatively and qualitatively. The findings of the study showed that the majority of Iranian EFL teachers have a clear understanding about TBLT concepts. However, there exist some negative views about implementing TBLT with regard to its classroom practice. Based on the findings, some pedagogical suggestions have been offered which can help teachers and teacher-trainers to design and implement TBLT more effectively in Iranian context.

  16. The neural network involved in a bimanual tactile-tactile matching discrimination task: a functional imaging study at 3 T

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Habas, Christophe; Cabanis, Emmanuel A. [UPMC Paris 6, Service de NeuroImagerie, Hopital des Quinze-Vingts, Paris (France)

    2007-08-15

    The cerebral and cerebellar network involved in a bimanual object recognition was studied in blood oxygenation dependent level functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI). Nine healthy right-handed volunteers were scanned (1) while performing bilateral finger movements (nondiscrimination motor task), and (2) while performing a bimanual tactile-tactile matching discrimination task using small chess pieces (tactile discrimination task). Extensive activations were specifically observed in the parietal (SII, superior lateral lobule), insular, prefrontal, cingulate and neocerebellar cortices (HVIII), with a left predominance in motor areas, during the tactile discrimination task in contrast to the findings during the nondiscrimination motor task. Bimanual tactile-tactile matching discrimination recruits multiple sensorimotor and associative cerebral and neocerebellar networks (including the cerebellar second homunculus, HVIII), comparable to the neural circuits involved in unimanual tactile object recognition. (orig.)

  17. Right prefrontal activity reflects the ability to overcome sleepiness during working memory tasks: a functional near-infrared spectroscopy study.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Motoyasu Honma

    Full Text Available It has been speculated that humans have an inherent ability to overcome sleepiness that counteracts homeostatic sleep pressure. However, it remains unclear which cortical substrate activities are involved in the ability to overcome sleepiness during the execution of cognitive tasks. Here we sought to confirm that this ability to overcome sleepiness in task execution improves performance on cognitive tasks, showing activation of neural substrates in the frontal cortex, by using a modified n-back (2- and 0-back working memory task and functional near-infrared spectroscopy. The change in alertness was just correlated with performances on the 2-back task. Activity in the right prefrontal cortex changed depending on alertness changes on the 2- and 0-back tasks independently, which indicates that activity in this region clearly reflects the ability to overcome sleepiness; it may contribute to the function of providing sufficient activity to meet the task load demands. This study reveals characteristics of the ability to overcome sleepiness during the n-back working memory task which goes beyond the attention-control function traditionally proposed.

  18. Comparative assessment of surgeons' task performance and surgical ergonomics associated with conventional and modified flank positions: a simulation study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fan, Yu; Kong, Gaiqing; Meng, Yisen; Tan, Shutao; Wei, Kunlin; Zhang, Qian; Jin, Jie

    2014-11-01

    Flank position is extensively used in retroperitoneoscopic urological practice. Most surgeons follow the patients' position in open approaches. However, surgical ergonomics of the conventional position in the retroperitoneoscopic surgery is poor. We introduce a modified position and evaluated task performance and surgical ergonomics of both positions with simulated surgical tasks. Twenty-one novice surgeons were recruited to perform four tasks: bead transfer, ring transfer, continuous suturing, and cutting a circle. The conventional position was simulated by setting an endo-surgical simulator parallel to the long axis of a surgical desk. The modified position was simulated by rotating the simulator 30° with respect to the long axis of the desk. The outcome measurements include task performance measures, kinematic measures for body alignment, surface electromyography, relative loading between feet, and subjective ratings of fatigue. We observed significant improvements in both task performance and surgical ergonomics parameters under the modified position. For all four tasks, subjects finished tasks faster with higher accuracy (p ergonomics part: (1) The angle between the upper body and the head was decreased by 7.4 ± 1.7°; (2) The EMG amplitude collected from shoulders and left lumber was significantly lower (p ergonomics. With a simulated surgery, we demonstrated that our modified position could significantly improve task performance and surgical ergonomics. Further studies are still warranted to validate these benefits for both patients and surgeons.

  19. Neural correlates of dual-task effect on belief-bias syllogistic reasoning: a near-infrared spectroscopy study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tsujii, Takeo; Watanabe, Shigeru

    2009-09-01

    Recent dual-process reasoning theories have explained the belief-bias effect, the tendency for human reasoning to be erroneously biased when logical conclusions are incongruent with beliefs about the world, by proposing a belief-based automatic heuristic system and logic-based demanding analytic system. Although these claims are supported by the behavioral finding that high-load secondary tasks enhance the belief-bias effect, the neural correlates of dual-task reasoning remain unknown. The present study therefore examined the relationship between dual-task effect and activity in the inferior frontal cortex (IFC) during belief-bias reasoning by near-infrared spectroscopy (NIRS). Forty-eight subjects participated in this study (MA=23.46 years). They were required to perform congruent and incongruent reasoning trials while responding to high- and low-load secondary tasks. Behavioral analysis showed that the high-load secondary task impaired only incongruent reasoning performance. NIRS analysis found that the high-load secondary task decreased right IFC activity during incongruent trials. Correlation analysis showed that subjects with enhanced right IFC activity could perform better in the incongruent reasoning trials, though subjects for whom right IFC activity was impaired by the secondary task could not maintain better reasoning performance. These findings suggest that the right IFC may be responsible for the dual-task effect in conflicting reasoning processes. When secondary tasks impair right IFC activity, subjects may rely on the automatic heuristic system, which results in belief-bias responses. We therefore offer the first demonstration of neural correlates of dual-task effect on IFC activity in belief-bias reasoning.

  20. Common mechanisms of spatial attention in memory and perception: a tactile dual-task study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Katus, Tobias; Andersen, Søren K; Müller, Matthias M

    2014-03-01

    Orienting attention to locations in mnemonic representations engages processes that functionally and anatomically overlap the neural circuitry guiding prospective shifts of spatial attention. The attention-based rehearsal account predicts that the requirement to withdraw attention from a memorized location impairs memory accuracy. In a dual-task study, we simultaneously presented retro-cues and pre-cues to guide spatial attention in short-term memory (STM) and perception, respectively. The spatial direction of each cue was independent of the other. The locations indicated by the combined cues could be compatible (same hand) or incompatible (opposite hands). Incompatible directional cues decreased lateralized activity in brain potentials evoked by visual cues, indicating interference in the generation of prospective attention shifts. The detection of external stimuli at the prospectively cued location was impaired when the memorized location was part of the perceptually ignored hand. The disruption of attention-based rehearsal by means of incompatible pre-cues reduced memory accuracy and affected encoding of tactile test stimuli at the retrospectively cued hand. These findings highlight the functional significance of spatial attention for spatial STM. The bidirectional interactions between both tasks demonstrate that spatial attention is a shared neural resource of a capacity-limited system that regulates information processing in internal and external stimulus representations.

  1. Report of the NASA lunar energy enterprise case study task force

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Anon.

    1989-01-01

    The Lunar Energy Enterprise Cast Study Task Force was formed to determine the economic viability and commercial business potential of mining and extracting He-3 from the lunar soil for use in earth-based fusion reactors. In addition, the Solar Power Satellite (SPS) and the Lunar Power Station (LPS) were also evaluated because they involve the use of lunar materials and could provide energy for lunar-based activities. The Task Force considered: (1) the legal and liability aspects of the space energy projects; (2) the long-range terrestrial energy needs and options; (3) the technical maturity of the three space energy projects; and (4) their commercial potential. The use of electricity is expected to increase, but emerging environmental concerns and resource availability suggest changes for the national energy policy. All three options have the potential to provide a nearly inexhaustible, clean source of electricity for the U.S. and worldwide, without major adverse impacts on the Earth's environment. Assumption by industry of the total responsibility for these energy projects is not yet possible. Pursuit of these energy concepts requires the combined efforts of government and industry. The report identifies key steps necessary for the development of these concepts and an evolving industrial role

  2. Electrocortical reactivity to social feedback in youth: A pilot study of the Island Getaway task

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Autumn Kujawa

    2014-10-01

    Full Text Available Peer relationships become a major concern in adolescence, yet event-related potential (ERP measures of reactivity to social feedback in adolescence are limited. In this pilot study, we tested a novel task to elicit reactivity to social feedback in youth. Participants (10–15 years old; 57.9% male; N = 19 played a game that involved exchanging personal information with peers, voting to remove players from the game, and receiving rejection and acceptance feedback from peers. Results indicated that participants modified their voting behavior in response to peer feedback, and rejection feedback was associated with a negativity in the ERP wave compared to acceptance (i.e., the feedback negativity, FN. The FN predicted behavioral patterns, such that participants who showed greater neural reactivity to social feedback were less likely to reject co-players. Preliminary analyses suggest that the task may be a useful measure of individual differences: adolescents higher in social anxiety symptoms were less likely to reject peers and showed an enhanced FN to rejection vs. acceptance feedback, and higher depressive symptoms predicted an increased FN to rejection specifically. Results suggest that the FN elicited by social feedback may be a useful, economical neural measure of social processing across development and in clinical research.

  3. Workplace bullying and task performance: A study on salespeople in retail industry

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Shi Min Chia

    2018-06-01

    Full Text Available Occupational stress has been known as a major cause of safety and health issues among sales people in retail organizations. Despite this, numerous studies have indicated the importance of factors and outcomes of occupational stress in several occupations, a knowledge gap on occupational stress remains a hot topic of interest for academics and practitioners. This study aims to examine the workplace bullying as a factor and task performance as the outcome of occupational stress among salespeople in the retail industry in Malaysia. Questionnaires were distributed to salespeople in the large-scale retail organization. Data from 222 salespeople suggest that workplace bullying was positively related to occupational stress and in turn, it affects employee performance. These findings contribute to understanding how workplace bullying affects the occupational stress and how stress may affect the performance of salespeople. Implications were presented for employers and employees who should be viewed with caution, in turn, to reduce the occupational stress at the workplace.

  4. Analysis of postural load during tasks related to milking cows-a case study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Groborz, Anna; Tokarski, Tomasz; Roman-Liu, Danuta

    2011-01-01

    The aim of this study was to analyse postural load during tasks related to milking cows of 2 farmers on 2 different farms (one with a manual milk transport system, the other with a fully automated milk transport system) as a case study. The participants were full-time farmers, they were both healthy and experienced in their job. The Ovako Working Posture Analyzing System (OWAS) was used to evaluate postural load and postural risk. Postural load was medium for the farmer on the farm with a manual milk transport system and high for the farmer working on the farm with a fully automated milk transport system. Thus, it can be concluded that a higher level of farm mechanization not always mean that the farmer's postural load is lower, but limitation of OWAS should be considered.

  5. Dual-task study of cognitive and postural interference: a preliminary investigation of the automatization deficit hypothesis of developmental co-ordination disorder.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tsai, C-L; Pan, C-Y; Cherng, R-J; Wu, S-K

    2009-07-01

    The purpose of this study was to investigate whether children with developmental co-ordination disorder and balance problem (DCD-BP) had greater problems than controls in performing a primary balance task while concurrently completing different cognitive tasks varying in oral or listening cognitive complexity, as well as to investigate the automatization deficit hypothesis of DCD-BP. Children with DCD-BP (n= 39), along with age-matched control counterparts (n= 39), were placed on automatic processing situation under dual-task conditions. All children were required to perform a primary task, five dual-task paradigms (oral counting task, auditory-verbal reaction task, auditory-choice reaction task, auditory-memory task and articulation alone) and an eyes-closed balancing task. In the primary task condition, the differences were not statistically significant (P= 0.393) between children with and without DCD-BP. However, children with DCD-BP were significantly more impaired on three of five dual-task conditions (oral counting task: P= 0.003; auditory-verbal reaction task: P= 0.011; auditory-memory task: P= 0.041) compared with the single-task situation, with the exception of the auditory-choice reaction task (P= 0.471) and articulation alone (P= 0.067). These results suggest that children with DCD-BP were more cognitively dependant and may have an automatization deficit.

  6. The role of attention during retrieval in working-memory span: a dual-task study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Healey, M Karl; Miyake, Akira

    2009-04-01

    We tested the hypothesis that retrieving target words in operation span (OSpan) involves attention-demanding processes. Participants completed the standard OSpan task and a modified version in which all equations preceded all target words. Recall took place under either full attention or easy versus hard divided-attention conditions. Recall suffered under divided attention with the recall decrement being greater for the hard secondary task. Moreover, secondary-task performance was disrupted more by the standard OSpan task than by the modified version with the hard secondary task showing the larger decrement. Finally, the time taken to start recalling the first word was considerably longer for the standard version than for the modified version. These results are consistent with the proposal that successful OSpan task performance in part involves the attention-demanding retrieval of targets from long-term memory.

  7. Encoding and immediate retrieval tasks in patients with epilepsy: A functional MRI study of verbal and visual memory.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Saddiki, Najat; Hennion, Sophie; Viard, Romain; Ramdane, Nassima; Lopes, Renaud; Baroncini, Marc; Szurhaj, William; Reyns, Nicolas; Pruvo, Jean Pierre; Delmaire, Christine

    2018-05-01

    Medial lobe temporal structures and more specifically the hippocampus play a decisive role in episodic memory. Most of the memory functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) studies evaluate the encoding phase; the retrieval phase being performed outside the MRI. We aimed to determine the ability to reveal greater hippocampal fMRI activations during retrieval phase. Thirty-five epileptic patients underwent a two-step memory fMRI. During encoding phase, subjects were requested to identify the feminine or masculine gender of faces and words presented, in order to encourage stimulus encoding. One hour after, during retrieval phase, subjects had to recognize the word and face. We used an event-related design to identify hippocampal activations. There was no significant difference between patients with left temporal lobe epilepsy, patients with right temporal lobe epilepsy and patients with extratemporal lobe epilepsy on verbal and visual learning task. For words, patients demonstrated significantly more bilateral hippocampal activation for retrieval task than encoding task and when the tasks were associated than during encoding alone. Significant difference was seen between face-encoding alone and face retrieval alone. This study demonstrates the essential contribution of the retrieval task during a fMRI memory task but the number of patients with hippocampal activations was greater when the two tasks were taken into account. Copyright © 2018. Published by Elsevier Masson SAS.

  8. Feasibility Study of Haptic Display for Rotation Tasks of Wrist Work

    OpenAIRE

    曽根, 順治; 岩井, 秀樹; 山田, 勝実; 陳, 軍; 徳山, 喜政; 今野, 晃市; Sone, Junji; Iwai, Hideki; Yamada, Katsumi; Chen, Jun; Tokuyama, Yoshimasa; Konno, Kouichi

    2011-01-01

    We have developed a haptic display for rotational tasks that involve functions of the human wrist. We represent the torque using a motor and a brake. Reference torque curves are obtained by the measuring torque required for each actual task using a torque sensor. The brake represents the stop condition. We have confirmed the effectiveness of the display by comparing the actual tasks with the haptic display experiment.

  9. An Exploratory Study into Perceived Task Complexity, Topic Specificity and Usefulness for Integrated Search

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Ingwersen, Peter; Lioma, Christina; Larsen, Birger

    2012-01-01

    We investigate the relations between user perceptions of work task complexity, topic specificity, and usefulness of retrieved results. 23 academic researchers submitted detailed descriptions of 65 real-life work tasks in the physics domain, and assessed documents retrieved from an integrated...... collection consisting of full text research articles in PDF, abstracts, and bibliographic records [6]. Bibliographic records were found to be more precise than full text PDFs, regardless of task complexity and topic specificity. PDFs were found to be more useful. Overall, for higher task complexity and topic...

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2014-05-01

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

  11. Machiavellian emotion regulation in a cognitive reappraisal task: An fMRI study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Deak, Anita; Bodrogi, Barbara; Biro, Brigitte; Perlaki, Gabor; Orsi, Gergely; Bereczkei, Tamas

    2017-06-01

    Affective coldness is one of the main features of Machiavellianism. Recent studies have revealed that Machiavellians are emotionally detached and that this "affective blunting" is associated with intense feelings, emotional instability, negative emotions, and difficulty in enduring distress. We used brain-imaging techniques to investigate emotion regulation in Machiavellianism at a neuropsychological level. We used situations in which participants were required to demonstrate emotional flexibility to explore the controversy surrounding the fact that Machiavellianism is associated with both cold-mindedness and emotional instability. Participants performed a reappraisal task in which emotionally evocative pictures (from the International Affective Picture System) were presented in different contexts (negative, positive, and neutral). They were asked to interpret a scenario according to its title and to reinterpret it according to another context created by a new title (e.g., negatively labeled pictures shifted to positively labeled ones). During task performance, Machiavellians showed increased activation of brain regions associated with emotion generation-for example, the amygdala and insula. This indicates that Machiavellian individuals are able to be involved emotionally in social situations. Increased activation in the temporal and parahippocampal regions during reappraisal suggests that Machiavellians use semantic-perceptual processes to construct alternative interpretations of the same situation and have enhanced memory for emotional stimuli. Furthermore, they seem to possess an intense awareness that leads them to shift attention from external to internal information to detect environmental changes. These cognitive processes may enable them to adjust their behavior quickly. This study supports the flexibility hypothesis of Machiavellianism and suggests that Machiavellians' approach to emotion regulation is linked to their rational mode of thinking.

  12. Number conservation is related to children's prefrontal inhibitory control: an fMRI study of a piagetian task.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Nicolas Poirel

    Full Text Available Although young children can accurately determine that two rows contain the same number of coins when they are placed in a one-to-one correspondence, children younger than 7 years of age erroneously think that the longer row contains more coins when the coins in one of the rows are spread apart. To demonstrate that prefrontal inhibitory control is necessary to succeed at this task (Piaget's conservation-of-number task, we studied the relationship between the percentage of BOLD signal changes in the brain areas activated in this developmental task and behavioral performance on a Stroop task and a Backward Digit Span task. The level of activation in the right insula/inferior frontal gyrus was selectively related to inhibitory control efficiency (i.e., the Stroop task, whereas the activation in the left intraparietal sulcus (IPS was selectively related to the ability to manipulate numerical information in working memory (i.e., the Backward Digit Span task. Taken together, the results indicate that to acquire number conservation, children's brains must not only activate the reversibility of cognitive operations (supported by the IPS but also inhibit a misleading length-equal-number strategy (supported by the right insula/inferior frontal gyrus.

  13. A training program to improve gait while dual tasking in patients with Parkinson's disease: a pilot study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yogev-Seligmann, Galit; Giladi, Nir; Brozgol, Marina; Hausdorff, Jeffrey M

    2012-01-01

    Impairments in the ability to perform another task while walking (ie, dual tasking [DT]) are associated with an increased risk of falling. Here we describe a program we developed specifically to improve DT performance while walking based on motor learning principles and task-specific training. We examined feasibility, potential efficacy, retention, and transfer to the performance of untrained tasks in a pilot study among 7 patients with Parkinson's disease (PD). Seven patients (Hoehn and Yahr stage, 2.1±0.2) were evaluated before, after, and 1 month after 4 weeks of DT training. Gait speed and gait variability were measured during usual walking and during 4 DT conditions. The 4-week program of one-on-one training included walking while performing several distinct cognitive tasks. Gait speed and gait variability during DT significantly improved. Improvements were also seen in the DT conditions that were not specifically trained and were retained 1 month after training. These initial findings support the feasibility of applying a task-specific DT gait training program for patients with PD and suggest that it positively affects DT gait, even in untrained tasks. The present results are also consistent with the possibility that DT gait training enhances divided attention abilities during walking. Copyright © 2012 American Congress of Rehabilitation Medicine. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  14. Selective activation of the superior frontal gyrus in task-switching: an event-related fNIRS study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cutini, Simone; Scatturin, Pietro; Menon, Enrica; Bisiacchi, Patrizia Silvia; Gamberini, Luciano; Zorzi, Marco; Dell'Acqua, Roberto

    2008-08-15

    In the task-switching paradigm, reaction time is longer and accuracy is worse in switch trials relative to repetition trials. This so-called switch cost has been ascribed to the engagement of control processes required to alternate between distinct stimulus-response mapping rules. Neuroimaging studies have reported an enhanced activation of the human lateral prefrontal cortex and the superior frontal gyrus during the task-switching paradigm. Whether neural activation in these regions is dissociable and associated with separable cognitive components of task switching has been a matter of recent debate. We used multi-channel near-infrared spectroscopy (fNIRS) to measure brain cortical activity in a task-switching paradigm designed to avoid task differences, order predictability, and frequency effects. The results showed a generalized bilateral activation of the lateral prefrontal cortex and the superior frontal gyrus in both switch trials and repetition trials. To isolate the activity selectively associated with the task-switch, the overall activity recorded during repetition trials was subtracted from the activity recorded during switch trials. Following subtraction, the remaining activity was entirely confined to the left portion of the superior frontal gyrus. The present results suggest that factors associated with load and maintenance of distinct stimulus-response mapping rules in working memory are likely contributors to the activation of the lateral prefrontal cortex, whereas only activity in the left superior frontal gyrus can be linked unequivocally to switching between distinct cognitive tasks.

  15. Study on the methodology for predicting and preventing errors to improve reliability of maintenance task in nuclear power plant

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Hanafusa, Hidemitsu; Iwaki, Toshio; Embrey, D.

    2000-01-01

    The objective of this study was to develop and effective methodology for predicting and preventing errors in nuclear power plant maintenance tasks. A method was established by which chief maintenance personnel can predict and reduce errors when reviewing the maintenance procedures and while referring to maintenance supporting systems and methods in other industries including aviation and chemical plant industries. The method involves the following seven steps: 1. Identification of maintenance tasks. 2. Specification of important tasks affecting safety. 3. Assessment of human errors occurring during important tasks. 4. Identification of Performance Degrading Factors. 5. Dividing important tasks into sub-tasks. 6. Extraction of errors using Predictive Human Error Analysis (PHEA). 7. Development of strategies for reducing errors and for recovering from errors. By way of a trial, this method was applied to the pump maintenance procedure in nuclear power plants. This method is believed to be capable of identifying the expected errors in important tasks and supporting the development of error reduction measures. By applying this method, the number of accidents resulting form human errors during maintenance can be reduced. Moreover, the maintenance support base using computers was developed. (author)

  16. Collaborate and share: an experimental study of the effects of task and reward interdependencies in online games.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Choi, Boreum; Lee, Inseong; Choi, Dongseong; Kim, Jinwoo

    2007-08-01

    Today millions of players interact with one another in online games, especially massively multiplayer online role-playing games (MMORPGs). These games promote interaction among players by offering interdependency features, but to date few studies have asked what interdependency design factors of MMORPGs make them fun for players, produce experiences of flow, or enhance player performance. In this study, we focused on two game design features: task and reward interdependency. We conducted a controlled experiment that compared the interaction effects of low and high task-interdependency conditions and low and high reward-interdependency conditions on three dependent variables: fun, flow, and performance. We found that in a low task-interdependency condition, players had more fun, experienced higher levels of flow, and perceived better performance when a low reward-interdependency condition also obtained. In contrast, in a high task-interdependency condition, all of these measures were higher when a high reward-interdependency condition also obtained.

  17. The Conservation of Rhythm in Suzuki Violin Students: A Task Validation Study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nelson, David J.

    1984-01-01

    Twenty Suzuki violin students between four and eight years old were individually administered an author-designed rhythmic task and a series of standardized tasks that measured area and length conservation. The students' prior training was found to be less of a factor in rhythmic conservation than were age and area-length conservation. (Author/RM)

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

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

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

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

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

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Cnossen, Fokie; Meijman, Theo; Rothengatter, Talib

    2004-01-01

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

  20. Effects of Immediate Repetition in L2 Speaking Tasks: A Focused Study

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bei, Gavin Xiaoyue

    2013-01-01

    This paper reports on a focused investigation into the immediate effects of oral narrative task repetition by two adult EFL learners of intermediate and high proficiency. Two participants performed a narrative speaking task after watching a cartoon video clip and repeated their performance three times, followed by a retrospective report in an…

  1. Results of the study of variables related to tasks of workers of a radioactive facility

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Alves, Alice S.; Campos, Daniela; Carneiro, Janete C.G.G.

    2015-01-01

    This paper presents the results of the evaluation study of the association degree between physical risk agent, ionizing radiation, and tasks performed by the occupationally exposed individuals (OEI), in the production of radioisotopes and radiopharmaceuticals of a radioactive facility. Initially, has been performed a qualitative assessment of the workplace, work groups and the processes as well. Starting from the inventoried subjective information, interviews and observations were identified seven homogeneous exposure groups, assuming they receive the same exposure to a range of specific agents. The data were analyzed by means of descriptive statistics with quantitative and qualitative approaches of the variables. In the analysis was used nonparametric tests (Equality of two proportions, Chi-square and Yates correction), descriptive measures of location (mean, median and quartiles) and dispersion (standard deviation and coefficient of variation). A significance level of 5% (p < 0.05) was adopted. The results have shown five risk factors (variables) related to the tasks performance. After the characterization distribution of the relative frequencies, all variables showed a significant degree of association (p < 0.001) to the exposure to ionizing radiation. Descriptive analysis of effective doses received by OEIs (n=102) resulted in the average of 4.06 mSv obtained in 2013 and 3.41 mSv in 2014. The collective doses corresponding to the same year were 414.41 mSv.person and 347.61 mSv.person. The doses values found during the analyzed period are in accordance to the limits established by the current national standards. (author)

  2. Results of the study of variables related to tasks of workers of a radioactive facility

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Alves, Alice S.; Campos, Daniela; Carneiro, Janete C.G.G., E-mail: alicesante@usp.br [Instituto de Pesquisas Energeticas e Nucleares (IPEN/CNEN-SP), Sao Paulo, SP (Brazil)

    2015-07-01

    This paper presents the results of the evaluation study of the association degree between physical risk agent, ionizing radiation, and tasks performed by the occupationally exposed individuals (OEI), in the production of radioisotopes and radiopharmaceuticals of a radioactive facility. Initially, has been performed a qualitative assessment of the workplace, work groups and the processes as well. Starting from the inventoried subjective information, interviews and observations were identified seven homogeneous exposure groups, assuming they receive the same exposure to a range of specific agents. The data were analyzed by means of descriptive statistics with quantitative and qualitative approaches of the variables. In the analysis was used nonparametric tests (Equality of two proportions, Chi-square and Yates correction), descriptive measures of location (mean, median and quartiles) and dispersion (standard deviation and coefficient of variation). A significance level of 5% (p < 0.05) was adopted. The results have shown five risk factors (variables) related to the tasks performance. After the characterization distribution of the relative frequencies, all variables showed a significant degree of association (p < 0.001) to the exposure to ionizing radiation. Descriptive analysis of effective doses received by OEIs (n=102) resulted in the average of 4.06 mSv obtained in 2013 and 3.41 mSv in 2014. The collective doses corresponding to the same year were 414.41 mSv.person and 347.61 mSv.person. The doses values found during the analyzed period are in accordance to the limits established by the current national standards. (author)

  3. Priming can affect naming colours using the study-test procedure. Revealing the role of task conflict.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sharma, Dinkar

    2016-11-14

    The Stroop paradigm has been widely used to study attention whilst its use to explore implicit memory have been mixed. Using the non-colour word Stroop task we tested contrasting predictions from the proactive-control/task-conflict model (Kalanthroff, Avnit, Henik, Davelaar & Usher, 2015) that implicate response conflict and task conflict for the priming effects. Using the study-test procedure 60 native English speakers were tested to determine whether priming effects from words that had previously been studied would cause interference when presented in a colour naming task. The results replicate a finding by MacLeod (1996) who showed no differences between the response latencies to studied and unstudied words. However, this pattern was predominately in the first half of the study where it was also found that both studied and unstudied words in a mixed block were slower to respond to than a block of pure unstudied words. The second half of the study showed stronger priming interference effects as well as a sequential modulation effect in which studied words slowed down the responses of studied words on the next trial. We discuss the role of proactive and reactive control processes and conclude that task conflict best explains the pattern of priming effects reported. Copyright © 2016. Published by Elsevier B.V.

  4. Neural Mechanisms Underlying the Cost of Task Switching: An ERP Study

    Science.gov (United States)

    Li, Ling; Wang, Meng; Zhao, Qian-Jing; Fogelson, Noa

    2012-01-01

    Background When switching from one task to a new one, reaction times are prolonged. This phenomenon is called switch cost (SC). Researchers have recently used several kinds of task-switching paradigms to uncover neural mechanisms underlying the SC. Task-set reconfiguration and passive dissipation of a previously relevant task-set have been reported to contribute to the cost of task switching. Methodology/Principal Findings An unpredictable cued task-switching paradigm was used, during which subjects were instructed to switch between a color and an orientation discrimination task. Electroencephalography (EEG) and behavioral measures were recorded in 14 subjects. Response-stimulus interval (RSI) and cue-stimulus interval (CSI) were manipulated with short and long intervals, respectively. Switch trials delayed reaction times (RTs) and increased error rates compared with repeat trials. The SC of RTs was smaller in the long CSI condition. For cue-locked waveforms, switch trials generated a larger parietal positive event-related potential (ERP), and a larger slow parietal positivity compared with repeat trials in the short and long CSI condition. Neural SC of cue-related ERP positivity was smaller in the long RSI condition. For stimulus-locked waveforms, a larger switch-related central negative ERP component was observed, and the neural SC of the ERP negativity was smaller in the long CSI. Results of standardized low resolution electromagnetic tomography (sLORETA) for both ERP positivity and negativity showed that switch trials evoked larger activation than repeat trials in dorsolateral prefrontal cortex (DLPFC) and posterior parietal cortex (PPC). Conclusions/Significance The results provide evidence that both RSI and CSI modulate the neural activities in the process of task-switching, but that these have a differential role during task-set reconfiguration and passive dissipation of a previously relevant task-set. PMID:22860090

  5. Neural mechanisms underlying the cost of task switching: an ERP study.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ling Li

    Full Text Available BACKGROUND: When switching from one task to a new one, reaction times are prolonged. This phenomenon is called switch cost (SC. Researchers have recently used several kinds of task-switching paradigms to uncover neural mechanisms underlying the SC. Task-set reconfiguration and passive dissipation of a previously relevant task-set have been reported to contribute to the cost of task switching. METHODOLOGY/PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: An unpredictable cued task-switching paradigm was used, during which subjects were instructed to switch between a color and an orientation discrimination task. Electroencephalography (EEG and behavioral measures were recorded in 14 subjects. Response-stimulus interval (RSI and cue-stimulus interval (CSI were manipulated with short and long intervals, respectively. Switch trials delayed reaction times (RTs and increased error rates compared with repeat trials. The SC of RTs was smaller in the long CSI condition. For cue-locked waveforms, switch trials generated a larger parietal positive event-related potential (ERP, and a larger slow parietal positivity compared with repeat trials in the short and long CSI condition. Neural SC of cue-related ERP positivity was smaller in the long RSI condition. For stimulus-locked waveforms, a larger switch-related central negative ERP component was observed, and the neural SC of the ERP negativity was smaller in the long CSI. Results of standardized low resolution electromagnetic tomography (sLORETA for both ERP positivity and negativity showed that switch trials evoked larger activation than repeat trials in dorsolateral prefrontal cortex (DLPFC and posterior parietal cortex (PPC. CONCLUSIONS/SIGNIFICANCE: The results provide evidence that both RSI and CSI modulate the neural activities in the process of task-switching, but that these have a differential role during task-set reconfiguration and passive dissipation of a previously relevant task-set.

  6. A computational study of whole-brain connectivity in resting state and task fMRI

    Science.gov (United States)

    Goparaju, Balaji; Rana, Kunjan D.; Calabro, Finnegan J.; Vaina, Lucia Maria

    2014-01-01

    Background We compared the functional brain connectivity produced during resting-state in which subjects were not actively engaged in a task with that produced while they actively performed a visual motion task (task-state). Material/Methods In this paper we employed graph-theoretical measures and network statistics in novel ways to compare, in the same group of human subjects, functional brain connectivity during resting-state fMRI with brain connectivity during performance of a high level visual task. We performed a whole-brain connectivity analysis to compare network statistics in resting and task states among anatomically defined Brodmann areas to investigate how brain networks spanning the cortex changed when subjects were engaged in task performance. Results In the resting state, we found strong connectivity among the posterior cingulate cortex (PCC), precuneus, medial prefrontal cortex (MPFC), lateral parietal cortex, and hippocampal formation, consistent with previous reports of the default mode network (DMN). The connections among these areas were strengthened while subjects actively performed an event-related visual motion task, indicating a continued and strong engagement of the DMN during task processing. Regional measures such as degree (number of connections) and betweenness centrality (number of shortest paths), showed that task performance induces stronger inter-regional connections, leading to a denser processing network, but that this does not imply a more efficient system as shown by the integration measures such as path length and global efficiency, and from global measures such as small-worldness. Conclusions In spite of the maintenance of connectivity and the “hub-like” behavior of areas, our results suggest that the network paths may be rerouted when performing the task condition. PMID:24947491

  7. Sex differences in task distribution and task exposures among Danish house painters: an observational study combining questionnaire data with biomechanical measurements.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Thomas Heilskov-Hansen

    Full Text Available OBJECTIVES: Sex differences in occupational biomechanical exposures may be part of the explanation why musculoskeletal complaints and disorders tend to be more common among women than among men. We aimed to determine possible sex differences in task distribution and task-specific postures and movements of the upper extremities among Danish house painters, and to establish sex-specific task exposure matrices. METHODS: To obtain task distributions, we sent out a questionnaire to all members of the Painters' Union in Denmark (N = 9364, of whom 53% responded. Respondents reported their task distributions in a typical week. To obtain task exposures, postures and movements were measured in 25 male and 25 female house painters for one whole working day per person. We used goniometers on the wrists, and inclinometers on the forehead and the upper arms. Participants filled in a logbook allowing task-specific exposures to be identified. Percentiles and % time with non-neutral postures were used to characterise postures. Velocity, range of motion, repetitiveness, and variation were used as measures of movement. Cochran-Mantel-Haenszel statistics and unpaired double-sided t-tests with post-hoc Bonferroni correction were used to evaluate sex differences. RESULTS: Statistically significant (p<0.05 sex differences were revealed in task proportions, but the proportions differed by less than 4%. For task exposures, no statistically significant sex differences were found. CONCLUSIONS: Only minor sex differences were found in task distribution and task exposures regarding postures and movements among Danish house painters. Sex-specific task exposure matrices were established.

  8. Testing audiovisual comprehension tasks with questions embedded in videos as subtitles: a pilot multimethod study

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Juan Carlos Casañ Núñez

    2017-06-01

    Full Text Available Listening, watching, reading and writing simultaneously in a foreign language is very complex. This paper is part of wider research which explores the use of audiovisual comprehension questions imprinted in the video image in the form of subtitles and synchronized with the relevant fragments for the purpose of language learning and testing. Compared to viewings where the comprehension activity is available only on paper, this innovative methodology may provide some benefits. Among them, it could reduce the conflict in visual attention between watching the video and completing the task, by spatially and temporally approximating the questions and the relevant fragments. The technique is seen as especially beneficial for students with a low proficiency language level. The main objectives of this study were to investigate if embedded questions had an impact on SFL students’ audiovisual comprehension test performance and to find out what examinees thought about them. A multimethod design (Morse, 2003 involving the sequential collection of three quantitative datasets was employed. A total of 41 learners of Spanish as a foreign language (SFL participated in the study (22 in the control group and 19 in the experimental one. Informants were selected by non-probabilistic sampling. The results showed that imprinted questions did not have any effect on test performance. Test-takers’ attitudes towards this methodology were positive. Globally, students in the experimental group agreed that the embedded questions helped them to complete the tasks. Furthermore, most of them were in favour of having the questions imprinted in the video in the audiovisual comprehension test of the final exam. These opinions are in line with those obtained in previous studies that looked into experts’, SFL students’ and SFL teachers’ views about this methodology (Casañ Núñez, 2015a, 2016a, in press-b. On the whole, these studies suggest that this technique has

  9. Use of Multichannel Near Infrared Spectroscopy to Study Relationships Between Brain Regions and Neurocognitive Tasks of Selective/Divided Attention and 2-Back Working Memory.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tomita, Nozomi; Imai, Shoji; Kanayama, Yusuke; Kawashima, Issaku; Kumano, Hiroaki

    2017-06-01

    While dichotic listening (DL) was originally intended to measure bottom-up selective attention, it has also become a tool for measuring top-down selective attention. This study investigated the brain regions related to top-down selective and divided attention DL tasks and a 2-back task using alphanumeric and Japanese numeric sounds. Thirty-six healthy participants underwent near-infrared spectroscopy scanning while performing a top-down selective attentional DL task, a top-down divided attentional DL task, and a 2-back task. Pearson's correlations were calculated to show relationships between oxy-Hb concentration in each brain region and the score of each cognitive task. Different brain regions were activated during the DL and 2-back tasks. Brain regions activated in the top-down selective attention DL task were the left inferior prefrontal gyrus and left pars opercularis. The left temporopolar area was activated in the top-down divided attention DL task, and the left frontopolar area and left dorsolateral prefrontal cortex were activated in the 2-back task. As further evidence for the finding that each task measured different cognitive and brain area functions, neither the percentages of correct answers for the three tasks nor the response times for the selective attentional task and the divided attentional task were correlated to one another. Thus, the DL and 2-back tasks used in this study can assess multiple areas of cognitive, brain-related dysfunction to explore their relationship to different psychiatric and neurodevelopmental disorders.

  10. Study on the utilization of the cognitive architecture EPIC to the task analysis of a nuclear power plant operator

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Soares, Herculano Vieira

    2003-02-01

    This work presents a study of the use of the integrative cognitive architecture EPIC - Executive-Process - Interactive-Control, designed to evaluate the performance of a person performing tasks in parallel in a man-machine interface, as a methodology for Cognitive Task Analysis of a nuclear power plant operator. A comparison of the results obtained by the simulation by EPIC and the results obtained by application of the MHP model to the tasks performed by a shift operator during the execution of the procedure PO-E-3 - Steam Generator Tube Rupture of Angra 1 Nuclear Power Plant is done. To subsidize that comparison, an experiment was performed at the Angra 2 Nuclear Power Plant Full Scope Simulator in which three operator tasks were executed, its completion time measured and compared with the results of MHP and EPIC modeling. (author)

  11. Effect of task complexity on intelligence and neural efficiency in children: an event-related potential study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhang, Qiong; Shi, Jiannong; Luo, Yuejia; Liu, Sainan; Yang, Jie; Shen, Mowei

    2007-10-08

    The present study investigates the effects of task complexity, intelligence and neural efficiency on children's performance on an Elementary Cognitive Task. Twenty-three children were divided into two groups on the basis of their Raven Progressive Matrix scores and were then asked to complete a choice reaction task with two test conditions. We recorded the electroencephalogram and calculated the peak latencies and amplitudes for anteriorly distributed P225, N380 and late positive component. Our results suggested shorter late positive component latencies in brighter children, possibly reflecting a higher processing speed in these individuals. Increased P225 amplitude and increased N380 amplitudes for brighter children may indicate a more efficient allocation of attention for brighter children. No moderating effect of task complexity on brain-intelligence relationship was found.

  12. Electric-powered passenger vehicle design study program. Task 1. Tradeoff studies

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Rowlett, B.H.

    1976-09-16

    Using the baseline vehicle and power system design established previously to meet the performance goals of the program, three power system computer simulation programs were prepared for the basic vehicle tradeoff studies. These programs simulate the performance of the power system and vehicle over different types of driving conditions such as maximum power acceleration, deceleration, city driving cycles, and hill climbing, and permit accurate determination of the benefits of the unique hybrid power system, the total energy required for the suburban city driving cycle, and the extremes of the operating envelopes of the components so that component design options can be defined and studied. Component design tradeoff studies were conducted, including sensitivity studies to show the criticality of the various losses and unknowns in the analytical models. Also, preliminary vehicle layout studies were performed to determine the best locations of the power system and the batteries. Three basic design options are identified for further study. Economic studies were initiated using analytical models to establish the complete vehicle weight and cost breakdowns. Preliminary reliability and safety studies were completed, and maintainability and safety certification criteria established. The detailed analysis of the power system has verified the feasibility of the system and of the performance expectations. Also, the feasibility of energy recovery from regenerative braking has been confirmed. The sensitivity analysis of the power system shows that sufficient margin for unknown design variables is provided. The preliminary economic analysis indicates that the most difficult objective of the study will be the selection of the cost and weight relationships which are required to achieve the overall cost objectives.

  13. Can conflict be energizing? a study of task conflict, positive emotions, and job satisfaction.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Todorova, Gergana; Bear, Julia B; Weingart, Laurie R

    2014-05-01

    Scholars have assumed that the presence of negative emotions during task conflict implies the absence of positive emotions. However, emotions researchers have shown that positive and negative emotions are not 2 ends of a bipolar continuum; rather, they represent 2 separate, orthogonal dimensions. Drawing on affective events theory, we develop and test hypotheses about the effects of task conflict on positive emotions and job satisfaction. To this end, we distinguish among the frequency, intensity, and information gained from task conflict. Using field data from 232 employees in a long-term health care organization, we find that more frequent mild task conflict expression engenders more information acquisition, but more frequent intense task conflict expression hinders it. Because of the information gains from mild task conflict expression, employees feel more active, energized, interested, and excited, and these positive active emotions increase job satisfaction. The information gained during task conflict, however, is not always energizing: It depends on the extent to which the behavioral context involves active learning and whether the conflict is cross-functional. We discuss theoretical implications for conflict, emotions, and job satisfaction in organizations. (c) 2014 APA, all rights reserved.

  14. Functional Activation during the Rapid Visual Information Processing Task in a Middle Aged Cohort: An fMRI Study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Neale, Chris; Johnston, Patrick; Hughes, Matthew; Scholey, Andrew

    2015-01-01

    The Rapid Visual Information Processing (RVIP) task, a serial discrimination task where task performance believed to reflect sustained attention capabilities, is widely used in behavioural research and increasingly in neuroimaging studies. To date, functional neuroimaging research into the RVIP has been undertaken using block analyses, reflecting the sustained processing involved in the task, but not necessarily the transient processes associated with individual trial performance. Furthermore, this research has been limited to young cohorts. This study assessed the behavioural and functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) outcomes of the RVIP task using both block and event-related analyses in a healthy middle aged cohort (mean age = 53.56 years, n = 16). The results show that the version of the RVIP used here is sensitive to changes in attentional demand processes with participants achieving a 43% accuracy hit rate in the experimental task compared with 96% accuracy in the control task. As shown by previous research, the block analysis revealed an increase in activation in a network of frontal, parietal, occipital and cerebellar regions. The event related analysis showed a similar network of activation, seemingly omitting regions involved in the processing of the task (as shown in the block analysis), such as occipital areas and the thalamus, providing an indication of a network of regions involved in correct trial performance. Frontal (superior and inferior frontal gryi), parietal (precuenus, inferior parietal lobe) and cerebellar regions were shown to be active in both the block and event-related analyses, suggesting their importance in sustained attention/vigilance. These networks and the differences between them are discussed in detail, as well as implications for future research in middle aged cohorts.

  15. Functional Activation during the Rapid Visual Information Processing Task in a Middle Aged Cohort: An fMRI Study.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Chris Neale

    Full Text Available The Rapid Visual Information Processing (RVIP task, a serial discrimination task where task performance believed to reflect sustained attention capabilities, is widely used in behavioural research and increasingly in neuroimaging studies. To date, functional neuroimaging research into the RVIP has been undertaken using block analyses, reflecting the sustained processing involved in the task, but not necessarily the transient processes associated with individual trial performance. Furthermore, this research has been limited to young cohorts. This study assessed the behavioural and functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI outcomes of the RVIP task using both block and event-related analyses in a healthy middle aged cohort (mean age = 53.56 years, n = 16. The results show that the version of the RVIP used here is sensitive to changes in attentional demand processes with participants achieving a 43% accuracy hit rate in the experimental task compared with 96% accuracy in the control task. As shown by previous research, the block analysis revealed an increase in activation in a network of frontal, parietal, occipital and cerebellar regions. The event related analysis showed a similar network of activation, seemingly omitting regions involved in the processing of the task (as shown in the block analysis, such as occipital areas and the thalamus, providing an indication of a network of regions involved in correct trial performance. Frontal (superior and inferior frontal gryi, parietal (precuenus, inferior parietal lobe and cerebellar regions were shown to be active in both the block and event-related analyses, suggesting their importance in sustained attention/vigilance. These networks and the differences between them are discussed in detail, as well as implications for future research in middle aged cohorts.

  16. A cluster-randomized trial of task shifting and blood pressure control in Ghana: study protocol.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ogedegbe, Gbenga; Plange-Rhule, Jacob; Gyamfi, Joyce; Chaplin, William; Ntim, Michael; Apusiga, Kingsley; Khurshid, Kiran; Cooper, Richard

    2014-06-12

    Countries in sub-Saharan Africa (SSA) are experiencing an epidemic of cardiovascular disease (CVD) propelled by rapidly increasing rates of hypertension. Barriers to hypertension control in SSA include poor access to care and high out-of-pocket costs. Although SSA bears 24% of the global disease burden, it has only 3% of the global health workforce. Given such limited resources, cost-effective strategies, such as task shifting, are needed to mitigate the rising CVD epidemic in SSA. Ghana, a country in SSA with an established community health worker program integrated within a national health insurance scheme provides an ideal platform to evaluate implementation of the World Health Organization (WHO) task-shifting strategy. This study will evaluate the comparative effectiveness of the implementation of the WHO Package targeted at CV risk assessment versus provision of health insurance coverage, on blood pressure (BP) reduction. Using a cluster randomized design, 32 community health centers (CHCs) and district hospitals in Ghana will be randomized to either the intervention group (16 CHCs) or the control group (16 CHCs). A total of 640 patients with uncomplicated hypertension (BP 140-179/90-99 mm Hg and absence of target organ damage) will be enrolled in this study (20 patients per CHC). The intervention consists of WHO Package of CV risk assessment, patient education, initiation and titration of antihypertensive medications, behavioral counseling on lifestyle behaviors, and medication adherence every three months for 12 months. The primary outcome is the mean change in systolic BP from baseline to 12 months. The secondary outcomes are rates of BP control at 12 months; levels of physical activity, percent change in weight, and dietary intake of fruits and vegetables at 12 months; and sustainability of intervention effects at 24 months. All outcomes will be assessed at baseline, six months and 12 months. Trained community health nurses will deliver the intervention as

  17. Multitasking information behavior, information task switching and anxiety: An exploratory study

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Alexopoulou, Peggy; Kotsopoulou, Anastasia

    2015-01-01

    Multitasking information behavior involves multiple forms of information searching such as library and Web search. Few researchers, however, have explored multitasking information behavior and information task switching in libraries in conjunction with psychological variables. This study explored this behavior in terms of anxiety under time pressure. This was an exploratory case study. Participant searched information for three unrelated everyday life information topics during a library visit, in a timeframe of one hour. The data collection tools used were: diary, observation, interview, and the State-Trait Anxiety Inventory test. Participant took the Trait-anxiety test before the library visit to measure anxiety level as a personal characteristic. She also took State-anxiety test before, during and after the library visit to measure anxiety levels regarding the information seeking behavior. The results suggested that participant had high levels of anxiety at the beginning of the multitasking information behavior. The reason for that was the concern about the performance as well as the identification of the right resources. During the multitasking information behavior, participant still had anxiety to find the right information. The levels of anxiety, however, were less due to library’s good organized structure. At the end of the information seeking process, the levels of anxiety dropped significant and therefore calm and safety returned. Finally, participant searched information for topics that were more important and for which she had prior knowledge When people, under time pressure, have access to well organized information, the levels of anxiety might decrease

  18. Multitasking information behavior, information task switching and anxiety: An exploratory study

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Alexopoulou, Peggy, E-mail: p.alexopoulou@lboro.ac.uk, E-mail: an-kotsopoulou@yahoo.com; Kotsopoulou, Anastasia, E-mail: p.alexopoulou@lboro.ac.uk, E-mail: an-kotsopoulou@yahoo.com [City Unity College, Thiseos 15-17, Athens, 105 62 (Greece)

    2015-02-09

    Multitasking information behavior involves multiple forms of information searching such as library and Web search. Few researchers, however, have explored multitasking information behavior and information task switching in libraries in conjunction with psychological variables. This study explored this behavior in terms of anxiety under time pressure. This was an exploratory case study. Participant searched information for three unrelated everyday life information topics during a library visit, in a timeframe of one hour. The data collection tools used were: diary, observation, interview, and the State-Trait Anxiety Inventory test. Participant took the Trait-anxiety test before the library visit to measure anxiety level as a personal characteristic. She also took State-anxiety test before, during and after the library visit to measure anxiety levels regarding the information seeking behavior. The results suggested that participant had high levels of anxiety at the beginning of the multitasking information behavior. The reason for that was the concern about the performance as well as the identification of the right resources. During the multitasking information behavior, participant still had anxiety to find the right information. The levels of anxiety, however, were less due to library’s good organized structure. At the end of the information seeking process, the levels of anxiety dropped significant and therefore calm and safety returned. Finally, participant searched information for topics that were more important and for which she had prior knowledge When people, under time pressure, have access to well organized information, the levels of anxiety might decrease.

  19. Study of target and non-target interplay in spatial attention task.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sweeti; Joshi, Deepak; Panigrahi, B K; Anand, Sneh; Santhosh, Jayasree

    2018-02-01

    Selective visual attention is the ability to selectively pay attention to the targets while inhibiting the distractors. This paper aims to study the targets and non-targets interplay in spatial attention task while subject attends to the target object present in one visual hemifield and ignores the distractor present in another visual hemifield. This paper performs the averaged evoked response potential (ERP) analysis and time-frequency analysis. ERP analysis agrees to the left hemisphere superiority over late potentials for the targets present in right visual hemifield. Time-frequency analysis performed suggests two parameters i.e. event-related spectral perturbation (ERSP) and inter-trial coherence (ITC). These parameters show the same properties for the target present in either of the visual hemifields but show the difference while comparing the activity corresponding to the targets and non-targets. In this way, this study helps to visualise the difference between targets present in the left and right visual hemifields and, also the targets and non-targets present in the left and right visual hemifields. These results could be utilised to monitor subjects' performance in brain-computer interface (BCI) and neurorehabilitation.

  20. Multitasking information behavior, information task switching and anxiety: An exploratory study

    Science.gov (United States)

    Alexopoulou, Peggy; Kotsopoulou, Anastasia

    2015-02-01

    Multitasking information behavior involves multiple forms of information searching such as library and Web search. Few researchers, however, have explored multitasking information behavior and information task switching in libraries in conjunction with psychological variables. This study explored this behavior in terms of anxiety under time pressure. This was an exploratory case study. Participant searched information for three unrelated everyday life information topics during a library visit, in a timeframe of one hour. The data collection tools used were: diary, observation, interview, and the State-Trait Anxiety Inventory test. Participant took the Trait-anxiety test before the library visit to measure anxiety level as a personal characteristic. She also took State-anxiety test before, during and after the library visit to measure anxiety levels regarding the information seeking behavior. The results suggested that participant had high levels of anxiety at the beginning of the multitasking information behavior. The reason for that was the concern about the performance as well as the identification of the right resources. During the multitasking information behavior, participant still had anxiety to find the right information. The levels of anxiety, however, were less due to library's good organized structure. At the end of the information seeking process, the levels of anxiety dropped significant and therefore calm and safety returned. Finally, participant searched information for topics that were more important and for which she had prior knowledge When people, under time pressure, have access to well organized information, the levels of anxiety might decrease.

  1. Variability of writing disorders in Wernicke's aphasia underperforming different writing tasks: A single-case study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kozintseva, Elena; Skvortsov, Anatoliy

    2016-03-01

    The aim of our study was to evolve views on writing disorders in Wernicke's agraphia by comparing group data and analysis of a single patient. We showed how a single-case study can be useful in obtaining essential results that can be hidden by averaging group data. Analysis of a single patient proved to be important for resolving contradictions of the "holistic" and "elementaristic" paradigms of psychology and for the development of theoretical knowledge with the example of a writing disorder. The implementation of a holistic approach was undertaken by presenting the tasks differing in functions in which writing had been performed since its appearance in human culture (communicative, mnestic, and regulatory). In spite of the identical composition of involved psychological components, these differences were identified when certain types of errors were analyzed in the single subject. The results are discussed in terms of used writing strategy, resulting in a way of operation of involved components that lead to qualitative and quantitative changes of writing errors within the syndrome of Wernicke's agraphia. © 2016 The Institute of Psychology, Chinese Academy of Sciences and John Wiley & Sons Australia, Ltd.

  2. Analysis of internal and external validity criteria for a computerized visual search task: A pilot study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Richard's, María M; Introzzi, Isabel; Zamora, Eliana; Vernucci, Santiago

    2017-01-01

    Inhibition is one of the main executive functions, because of its fundamental role in cognitive and social development. Given the importance of reliable and computerized measurements to assessment inhibitory performance, this research intends to analyze the internal and external criteria of validity of a computerized conjunction search task, to evaluate the role of perceptual inhibition. A sample of 41 children (21 females and 20 males), aged between 6 and 11 years old (M = 8.49, SD = 1.47), intentionally selected from a private management school of Mar del Plata (Argentina), middle socio-economic level were assessed. The Conjunction Search Task from the TAC Battery, Coding and Symbol Search tasks from Wechsler Intelligence Scale for Children were used. Overall, results allow us to confirm that the perceptual inhibition task form TAC presents solid rates of internal and external validity that make a valid measurement instrument of this process.

  3. Ergonomic assessment for the task of repairing computers in a manufacturing company: A case study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Maldonado-Macías, Aidé; Realyvásquez, Arturo; Hernández, Juan Luis; García-Alcaraz, Jorge

    2015-01-01

    Manufacturing industry workers who repair computers may be exposed to ergonomic risk factors. This project analyzes the tasks involved in the computer repair process to (1) find the risk level for musculoskeletal disorders (MSDs) and (2) propose ergonomic interventions to address any ergonomic issues. Work procedures and main body postures were video recorded and analyzed using task analysis, the Rapid Entire Body Assessment (REBA) postural method, and biomechanical analysis. High risk for MSDs was found on every subtask using REBA. Although biomechanical analysis found an acceptable mass center displacement during tasks, a hazardous level of compression on the lower back during computer's transportation was detected. This assessment found ergonomic risks mainly in the trunk, arm/forearm, and legs; the neck and hand/wrist were also compromised. Opportunities for ergonomic analyses and interventions in the design and execution of computer repair tasks are discussed.

  4. Establishing the resting state default mode network derived from functional magnetic resonance imaging tasks as an endophenotype: A twins study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Korgaonkar, Mayuresh S; Ram, Kaushik; Williams, Leanne M; Gatt, Justine M; Grieve, Stuart M

    2014-08-01

    The resting state default mode network (DMN) has been shown to characterize a number of neurological and psychiatric disorders. Evidence suggests an underlying genetic basis for this network and hence could serve as potential endophenotype for these disorders. Heritability is a defining criterion for endophenotypes. The DMN is measured either using a resting-state functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) scan or by extracting resting state activity from task-based fMRI. The current study is the first to evaluate heritability of this task-derived resting activity. 250 healthy adult twins (79 monozygotic and 46 dizygotic same sex twin pairs) completed five cognitive and emotion processing fMRI tasks. Resting state DMN functional connectivity was derived from these five fMRI tasks. We validated this approach by comparing connectivity estimates from task-derived resting activity for all five fMRI tasks, with those obtained using a dedicated task-free resting state scan in an independent cohort of 27 healthy individuals. Structural equation modeling using the classic twin design was used to estimate the genetic and environmental contributions to variance for the resting-state DMN functional connectivity. About 9-41% of the variance in functional connectivity between the DMN nodes was attributed to genetic contribution with the greatest heritability found for functional connectivity between the posterior cingulate and right inferior parietal nodes (P<0.001). Our data provide new evidence that functional connectivity measures from the intrinsic DMN derived from task-based fMRI datasets are under genetic control and have the potential to serve as endophenotypes for genetically predisposed psychiatric and neurological disorders. Copyright © 2014 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  5. TASK RELEVANCE IN THE DESIGN OF ONLINE PROFESSIONAL DEVELOPMENT FOR TEACHERS OF ELLs: A Q Methodology Study

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Linda J. COLLINS

    2014-07-01

    Full Text Available Online professional development (oPD for teachers should focus on designing web-based learning opportunities that help practicing educators solve the tough problems of practice when working in their schools. Technology, pedagogy, and content knowledge can be integrated in the design of online professional development modules to enhance task relevance for maximum learning and transformation. The purpose of this study was to learn which tasks in an online professional development module were ranked by in-service educators as relevant to their work with English language learners (ELLs. Using Q methodology, the researcher asked participants to rank the relevancy of 36 online tasks from an online professional development module designed and developed at an American university. Participants used a -5 to 5 forced distribution to rank online activities from “Least relevant to my work with ELLs” to “Most relevant to my work with ELLs” followed by a semi-structured interview to explain their decisions. After data analysis, two factors emerged, indicating that participants’ perceptions on task relevance differed by professional roles and educational settings. The participants also favored didactic online tasks over interactive tasks. The findings from the oPD participants’ responses have the potential to serve as the basis for future online professional development design and for planning other relevant activities to be applied to the e-learning environment.

  6. Effects of alcohol on attention orienting and dual-task performance during simulated driving: an event-related potential study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wester, Anne E; Verster, Joris C; Volkerts, Edmund R; Böcker, Koen B E; Kenemans, J Leon

    2010-09-01

    Driving is a complex task and is susceptible to inattention and distraction. Moreover, alcohol has a detrimental effect on driving performance, possibly due to alcohol-induced attention deficits. The aim of the present study was to assess the effects of alcohol on simulated driving performance and attention orienting and allocation, as assessed by event-related potentials (ERPs). Thirty-two participants completed two test runs in the Divided Attention Steering Simulator (DASS) with blood alcohol concentrations (BACs) of 0.00%, 0.02%, 0.05%, 0.08% and 0.10%. Sixteen participants performed the second DASS test run with a passive auditory oddball to assess alcohol effects on involuntary attention shifting. Sixteen other participants performed the second DASS test run with an active auditory oddball to assess alcohol effects on dual-task performance and active attention allocation. Dose-dependent impairments were found for reaction times, the number of misses and steering error, even more so in dual-task conditions, especially in the active oddball group. ERP amplitudes to novel irrelevant events were also attenuated in a dose-dependent manner. The P3b amplitude to deviant target stimuli decreased with blood alcohol concentration only in the dual-task condition. It is concluded that alcohol increases distractibility and interference from secondary task stimuli, as well as reduces attentional capacity and dual-task integrality.

  7. Grip Strength and Its Relationship to Police Recruit Task Performance and Injury Risk: A Retrospective Cohort Study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Orr, Robin; Pope, Rodney; Stierli, Michael; Hinton, Benjamin

    2017-08-21

    Suitable grip strength is a police occupational requirement. The aim of this study was to investigate the association between grip strength, task performance and injury risk in a police population. Retrospective data of police recruits (n = 169) who had undergone basic recruit training were provided, including handgrip strength results, occupational task performance measures (consisting of police task simulations [SIM], tactical options [TACOPS] and marksmanship assessments) and injury records. Left hand grip strength (41.91 ± 8.29 kg) measures showed a stronger correlation than right hand grip strength (42.15 ± 8.53 kg) with all outcome measures. Recruits whose grip strength scores were lower were significantly more susceptible to failing the TACOPS occupational task assessment than those with greater grip strength scores, with significant ( p ≤ 0.003) weak to moderate, positive correlations found between grip strength and TACOPS performance. A significant ( p performance, with those performing better in marksmanship having higher grip strength. Left hand grip strength was significantly associated with injury risk ( r = -0.181, p = 0.018) but right hand grip strength was not. A positive association exists between handgrip strength and police recruit task performance (notably TACOPS and marksmanship) with recruits who scored poorly on grip strength being at greatest risk of occupational assessment task failure.

  8. A Study on Developing "An Attitude Scale for Project and Performance Tasks for Turkish Language Leaching Course"

    Science.gov (United States)

    Demir, Tazegul

    2013-01-01

    The main purpose of this study is to demonstrate the students' attitudes towards project and performance tasks in Turkish Lessons and to develop a reliable and valid measurement tool. A total of 461 junior high school students participated in this study. In this study, firstly the preparation of items, specialist be consulted (content…

  9. Study on the task categorization of main control room in NPP

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Fang Zhou; Ma Zhicai; Ma Xusheng; Zheng Mingguang

    2005-01-01

    The paper states the importance and trendy requirements of Main Control Room (MCR) in nuclear power plant and introduces how to implement the human factor engineering principle in the design of advanced main control room. It mainly focuses on the purpose and functions, strategy and methodology, scope and contents of the MCR task categorization. The preliminary MCR task categorization is performed according to these principles. (authors)

  10. 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

  11. Generic cognitive adaptations to task interference in task switching

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Poljac, E.; Bekkering, H.

    2009-01-01

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

  12. Task Switching in a Hierarchical Task Structure: Evidence for the Fragility of the Task Repetition Benefit

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lien, Mei-Ching; Ruthruff, Eric

    2004-01-01

    This study examined how task switching is affected by hierarchical task organization. Traditional task-switching studies, which use a constant temporal and spatial distance between each task element (defined as a stimulus requiring a response), promote a flat task structure. Using this approach, Experiment 1 revealed a large switch cost of 238 ms.…

  13. PARCELLATION OF THE CINGULATE CORTEX AT REST AND DURING TASKS: A META-ANALYTIC CLUSTERING AND EXPERIMENTAL STUDY

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Diana M.E. Torta

    2013-06-01

    Full Text Available Anatomical, morphological and histological data have consistently shown that the cingulate cortex can be divided into four main regions. However, less is known about parcellations of the cingulate cortex when involved in active tasks. Here, we aimed at comparing how the pattern of clusterization of the cingulate cortex changes across different levels of task complexity. We parcellated the cingulate cortex using the results of a meta-analytic study and of three experimental studies. The experimental studies, which included two active tasks and a resting state protocol, were used to control the results obtained with the meta-analytic parcellation. We explored the meta-analytic parcellation by applying a meta-analytic clustering (MaC to papers retrieved from the BrainMap database. The MaC is a meta-analytic connectivity driven parcellation technique recently developed by our group which allowed us to parcellate the cingulate cortex on the basis of its pattern of co-activations during active tasks. The MaC results indicated that the cingulate cortex can be parcellated into three clusters. These clusters covered different percentages of the cingulate parenchyma and had a different density of foci, with the first cluster being more densely connected. The control experiments showed different clusterization results, suggesting that the co-activations of the cingulate cortex are highly dependent on the task that is tested. Our results highlight the importance of the cingulate cortex as a hub, which modifies its pattern of co-activations depending on the task requests and on the level of task complexity. The neurobiological meaning of these results is discussed.

  14. Neural Bases of Unconscious Error Detection in a Chinese Anagram Solution Task: Evidence from ERP Study.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Hua-Zhan Yin

    Full Text Available In everyday life, error monitoring and processing are important for improving ongoing performance in response to a changing environment. However, detecting an error is not always a conscious process. The temporal activation patterns of brain areas related to cognitive control in the absence of conscious awareness of an error remain unknown. In the present study, event-related potentials (ERPs in the brain were used to explore the neural bases of unconscious error detection when subjects solved a Chinese anagram task. Our ERP data showed that the unconscious error detection (UED response elicited a more negative ERP component (N2 than did no error (NE and detect error (DE responses in the 300-400-ms time window, and the DE elicited a greater late positive component (LPC than did the UED and NE in the 900-1200-ms time window after the onset of the anagram stimuli. Taken together with the results of dipole source analysis, the N2 (anterior cingulate cortex might reflect unconscious/automatic conflict monitoring, and the LPC (superior/medial frontal gyrus might reflect conscious error recognition.

  15. Low-Arousal Speech Noise Improves Performance in N-Back Task: An ERP Study

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhang, Dandan; Jin, Yi; Luo, Yuejia

    2013-01-01

    The relationship between noise and human performance is a crucial topic in ergonomic research. However, the brain dynamics of the emotional arousal effects of background noises are still unclear. The current study employed meaningless speech noises in the n-back working memory task to explore the changes of event-related potentials (ERPs) elicited by the noises with low arousal level vs. high arousal level. We found that the memory performance in low arousal condition were improved compared with the silent and the high arousal conditions; participants responded more quickly and had larger P2 and P3 amplitudes in low arousal condition while the performance and ERP components showed no significant difference between high arousal and silent conditions. These findings suggested that the emotional arousal dimension of background noises had a significant influence on human working memory performance, and that this effect was independent of the acoustic characteristics of noises (e.g., intensity) and the meaning of speech materials. The current findings improve our understanding of background noise effects on human performance and lay the ground for the investigation of patients with attention deficits. PMID:24204607

  16. MRS systems study, Task F: Transportation impacts of a monitored retrievable storage facility

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Brentlinger, L.A.; Gupta, S.; Plummer, A.M.; Smith, L.A.; Tzemos, S.

    1989-05-01

    The passage of the Nuclear Waste Policy Amendments Act of 1987 (NWPAA) modified the basis from which the Office of Civilian Radioactive Waste Management (OCRWM) had derived and developed the configuration of major elements of the waste system (repository, monitored retrievable storage, and transportation). While the key aspects of the Nuclear Waste Policy Act of 1982 remain unaltered, NWPAA provisions focusing site characterization solely at Yucca Mountain, authorizing a monitored retrievable storage (MRS) facility with specific linkages to the repository, and establishing an MRS Review Commission make it prudent for OCRWM to update its analysis of the role of the MRS in the overall waste system configuration. This report documents the differences in transportation costs and radiological dose under alternative scenarios pertaining to a nuclear waste management system with and without an MRS, to include the effect of various MRS packaging functions and locations. The analysis is limited to the impacts of activities related directly to the hauling of high-level radioactive waste (HLW), including the capital purchase and maintenance costs of the transportation cask system. Loading and unloading impacts are not included in this study because they are treated as facility costs in the other task reports. Transportation costs are based on shipments of 63,000 metric tons of uranium (MTU) of spent nuclear fuel and 7,000 MTU equivalent of HLW. 10 refs., 41 tabs.

  17. Low-arousal speech noise improves performance in N-back task: an ERP study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Han, Longzhu; Liu, Yunzhe; Zhang, Dandan; Jin, Yi; Luo, Yuejia

    2013-01-01

    The relationship between noise and human performance is a crucial topic in ergonomic research. However, the brain dynamics of the emotional arousal effects of background noises are still unclear. The current study employed meaningless speech noises in the n-back working memory task to explore the changes of event-related potentials (ERPs) elicited by the noises with low arousal level vs. high arousal level. We found that the memory performance in low arousal condition were improved compared with the silent and the high arousal conditions; participants responded more quickly and had larger P2 and P3 amplitudes in low arousal condition while the performance and ERP components showed no significant difference between high arousal and silent conditions. These findings suggested that the emotional arousal dimension of background noises had a significant influence on human working memory performance, and that this effect was independent of the acoustic characteristics of noises (e.g., intensity) and the meaning of speech materials. The current findings improve our understanding of background noise effects on human performance and lay the ground for the investigation of patients with attention deficits.

  18. Low-arousal speech noise improves performance in N-back task: an ERP study.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Longzhu Han

    Full Text Available The relationship between noise and human performance is a crucial topic in ergonomic research. However, the brain dynamics of the emotional arousal effects of background noises are still unclear. The current study employed meaningless speech noises in the n-back working memory task to explore the changes of event-related potentials (ERPs elicited by the noises with low arousal level vs. high arousal level. We found that the memory performance in low arousal condition were improved compared with the silent and the high arousal conditions; participants responded more quickly and had larger P2 and P3 amplitudes in low arousal condition while the performance and ERP components showed no significant difference between high arousal and silent conditions. These findings suggested that the emotional arousal dimension of background noises had a significant influence on human working memory performance, and that this effect was independent of the acoustic characteristics of noises (e.g., intensity and the meaning of speech materials. The current findings improve our understanding of background noise effects on human performance and lay the ground for the investigation of patients with attention deficits.

  19. Transfer Effects to a Multimodal Dual-Task after Working Memory Training and Associated Neural Correlates in Older Adults - A Pilot Study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Heinzel, Stephan; Rimpel, Jérôme; Stelzel, Christine; Rapp, Michael A

    2017-01-01

    Working memory (WM) performance declines with age. However, several studies have shown that WM training may lead to performance increases not only in the trained task, but also in untrained cognitive transfer tasks. It has been suggested that transfer effects occur if training task and transfer task share specific processing components that are supposedly processed in the same brain areas. In the current study, we investigated whether single-task WM training and training-related alterations in neural activity might support performance in a dual-task setting, thus assessing transfer effects to higher-order control processes in the context of dual-task coordination. A sample of older adults (age 60-72) was assigned to either a training or control group. The training group participated in 12 sessions of an adaptive n-back training. At pre and post-measurement, a multimodal dual-task was performed in all participants to assess transfer effects. This task consisted of two simultaneous delayed match to sample WM tasks using two different stimulus modalities (visual and auditory) that were performed either in isolation (single-task) or in conjunction (dual-task). A subgroup also participated in functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) during the performance of the n-back task before and after training. While no transfer to single-task performance was found, dual-task costs in both the visual modality ( p task costs, while neural activity changes in right DLPFC during three-back predicted visual dual-task costs. Results might indicate an improvement in central executive processing that could facilitate both WM and dual-task coordination.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2017-12-01

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

  1. Study of Co-Located and Distant Collaboration with Symbolic Support via a Haptics-Enhanced Virtual Reality Task

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yeh, Shih-Ching; Hwang, Wu-Yuin; Wang, Jin-Liang; Zhan, Shi-Yi

    2013-01-01

    This study intends to investigate how multi-symbolic representations (text, digits, and colors) could effectively enhance the completion of co-located/distant collaborative work in a virtual reality context. Participants' perceptions and behaviors were also studied. A haptics-enhanced virtual reality task was developed to conduct…

  2. Sharing Responsibilities within the General Practice Team - A Cross-Sectional Study of Task Delegation in Germany.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mergenthal, Karola; Beyer, Martin; Gerlach, Ferdinand M; Guethlin, Corina

    2016-01-01

    Expected growth in the demand for health services has generated interest in the more effective deployment of health care assistants. Programs encouraging German general practitioners (GPs) to share responsibility for care with specially qualified health care assistants in the family practice (VERAHs) have existed for several years. But no studies have been conducted on the tasks German GPs are willing to rely on specially qualified personnel to perform, what they are prepared to delegate to all non-physician practice staff and what they prefer to do themselves. As part of an evaluation study on the deployment of VERAHs in GP-centered health care, we used a questionnaire to ask about task delegation within the practice team. From a list of tasks that VERAHs are specifically trained to carry out, GPs were asked to indicate which they actually delegate. We also asked GPs why they had employed a VERAH in their practice and for their opinions on the benefits and limitations of assigning tasks to VERAHs. The aim of the study was to find out which tasks GPs delegate to their specially qualified personnel, which they permit all HCAs to carry out, and which tasks they do not delegate at all. The survey was filled in and returned by 245 GPs (83%). Some tasks were exclusively delegated to VERAHs (e.g. home visits), while others were delegated to all HCAs (e.g. vaccinations). About half the GPs rated the assessment of mental health, as part of the comprehensive assessment of a patient's condition, as the sole responsibility of a GP. The possibility to delegate more complex tasks was the main reason given for employing a VERAH. Doctors said the delegation of home visits provided them with the greatest relief. In Germany, where GPs are solely accountable for the health care provided in their practices, experience with the transfer of responsibility to other non-physician health care personnel is still very limited. When HCAs have undergone special training, GPs seem to be

  3. Sharing Responsibilities within the General Practice Team – A Cross-Sectional Study of Task Delegation in Germany

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mergenthal, Karola; Beyer, Martin; Gerlach, Ferdinand M.; Guethlin, Corina

    2016-01-01

    Background Expected growth in the demand for health services has generated interest in the more effective deployment of health care assistants. Programs encouraging German general practitioners (GPs) to share responsibility for care with specially qualified health care assistants in the family practice (VERAHs) have existed for several years. But no studies have been conducted on the tasks German GPs are willing to rely on specially qualified personnel to perform, what they are prepared to delegate to all non-physician practice staff and what they prefer to do themselves. Methods As part of an evaluation study on the deployment of VERAHs in GP-centered health care, we used a questionnaire to ask about task delegation within the practice team. From a list of tasks that VERAHs are specifically trained to carry out, GPs were asked to indicate which they actually delegate. We also asked GPs why they had employed a VERAH in their practice and for their opinions on the benefits and limitations of assigning tasks to VERAHs. The aim of the study was to find out which tasks GPs delegate to their specially qualified personnel, which they permit all HCAs to carry out, and which tasks they do not delegate at all. Results The survey was filled in and returned by 245 GPs (83%). Some tasks were exclusively delegated to VERAHs (e.g. home visits), while others were delegated to all HCAs (e.g. vaccinations). About half the GPs rated the assessment of mental health, as part of the comprehensive assessment of a patient’s condition, as the sole responsibility of a GP. The possibility to delegate more complex tasks was the main reason given for employing a VERAH. Doctors said the delegation of home visits provided them with the greatest relief. Conclusions In Germany, where GPs are solely accountable for the health care provided in their practices, experience with the transfer of responsibility to other non-physician health care personnel is still very limited. When HCAs have

  4. Importance of punishment frequency in the Iowa gambling task: an fMRI study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ma, Shuangye; Zang, Yufeng; Cheung, Vinci; Chan, Chetwyn C H

    2015-12-01

    It has been widely found that in the Iowa Gambling Task (IGT; Bechara et al. Cognition, 50(1), 7-15 1994) normal subjects would gradually learn to prefer obtaining rewards for long-term benefits than seeking immediate rewards to maximize the overall profit. The current study aimed to gain an understanding of how punishment frequency in the IGT would be processed and its association with subjects' reward preferences. In this study, we employed the clinical version of the IGT, in which response options are not only different in the long-term outcome, but also associated with different punishment frequencies. Event-related functional Magnetic Resonance Imaging (fMRI) was used to capture the subjects' brain activity when performing the IGT. A total of 24 male subjects (mean age = 21.7 years, SD = 1.8 years), who were university students, participated in the experiment. It is found that subjects learned to select more from the decks that were advantageous in the long-term, but they were more sensitive to the effect of long-term outcome under the condition of high punishment frequency. The corresponding brain activation showed that the Anterior Cingulate Cortex (ACC) had significantly higher activation during the disadvantageous choices than the advantageous choices. Such activity difference between the two conditions of long-term outcome was more prominent with high punishment frequency than low punishment frequency; and this brain activity difference was significantly correlated with the behavioral performance under the condition of high punishment frequency. The results suggested that only in the context with high punishment frequency, there would be increased neural activity in ACC when subjects intended to select from the disadvantageous choices so that these choices would be inhibited and advantageous choices would be selected.

  5. Task and spatial frequency modulations of object processing: an EEG study.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Matt Craddock

    Full Text Available Visual object processing may follow a coarse-to-fine sequence imposed by fast processing of low spatial frequencies (LSF and slow processing of high spatial frequencies (HSF. Objects can be categorized at varying levels of specificity: the superordinate (e.g. animal, the basic (e.g. dog, or the subordinate (e.g. Border Collie. We tested whether superordinate and more specific categorization depend on different spatial frequency ranges, and whether any such dependencies might be revealed by or influence signals recorded using EEG. We used event-related potentials (ERPs and time-frequency (TF analysis to examine the time course of object processing while participants performed either a grammatical gender-classification task (which generally forces basic-level categorization or a living/non-living judgement (superordinate categorization on everyday, real-life objects. Objects were filtered to contain only HSF or LSF. We found a greater positivity and greater negativity for HSF than for LSF pictures in the P1 and N1 respectively, but no effects of task on either component. A later, fronto-central negativity (N350 was more negative in the gender-classification task than the superordinate categorization task, which may indicate that this component relates to semantic or syntactic processing. We found no significant effects of task or spatial frequency on evoked or total gamma band responses. Our results demonstrate early differences in processing of HSF and LSF content that were not modulated by categorization task, with later responses reflecting such higher-level cognitive factors.

  6. Task and spatial frequency modulations of object processing: an EEG study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Craddock, Matt; Martinovic, Jasna; Müller, Matthias M

    2013-01-01

    Visual object processing may follow a coarse-to-fine sequence imposed by fast processing of low spatial frequencies (LSF) and slow processing of high spatial frequencies (HSF). Objects can be categorized at varying levels of specificity: the superordinate (e.g. animal), the basic (e.g. dog), or the subordinate (e.g. Border Collie). We tested whether superordinate and more specific categorization depend on different spatial frequency ranges, and whether any such dependencies might be revealed by or influence signals recorded using EEG. We used event-related potentials (ERPs) and time-frequency (TF) analysis to examine the time course of object processing while participants performed either a grammatical gender-classification task (which generally forces basic-level categorization) or a living/non-living judgement (superordinate categorization) on everyday, real-life objects. Objects were filtered to contain only HSF or LSF. We found a greater positivity and greater negativity for HSF than for LSF pictures in the P1 and N1 respectively, but no effects of task on either component. A later, fronto-central negativity (N350) was more negative in the gender-classification task than the superordinate categorization task, which may indicate that this component relates to semantic or syntactic processing. We found no significant effects of task or spatial frequency on evoked or total gamma band responses. Our results demonstrate early differences in processing of HSF and LSF content that were not modulated by categorization task, with later responses reflecting such higher-level cognitive factors.

  7. Service Robots for Hospitals: A Case Study of Transportation Tasks in a Hospital

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Özkil, Ali Gürcan; Fan, Zhun; Dawids, Steen

    2009-01-01

    In this paper, the need for automated transportation systems for hospitals is investigated. Among other alternatives, mobile robots stand out as the most prominent means of automation of transportation tasks in hospitals. Existing transportation routines of a hospital are analyzed in order...... to verify the need for automation and identify possible areas of improvement. The analysis shows that most of the existing transportation is carried out manually, and hospitals can greatly benefit from automated transportation. Based on the results of the analysis, three alternatives are derived...... for implementing mobile service robots for transportation tasks in hospitals....

  8. Functional MRI of Handwriting Tasks: A Study of Healthy Young Adults Interacting with a Novel Touch-Sensitive Tablet.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Karimpoor, Mahta; Churchill, Nathan W; Tam, Fred; Fischer, Corinne E; Schweizer, Tom A; Graham, Simon J

    2018-01-01

    Handwriting is a complex human activity that engages a blend of cognitive and visual motor skills. Current understanding of the neural correlates of handwriting has largely come from lesion studies of patients with impaired handwriting. Task-based fMRI studies would be useful to supplement this work. To address concerns over ecological validity, previously we developed a fMRI-compatible, computerized tablet system for writing and drawing including visual feedback of hand position and an augmented reality display. The purpose of the present work is to use the tablet system in proof-of-concept to characterize brain activity associated with clinically relevant handwriting tasks, originally developed to characterize handwriting impairments in Alzheimer's disease patients. As a prelude to undertaking fMRI studies of patients, imaging was performed of twelve young healthy subjects who copied sentences, phone numbers, and grocery lists using the fMRI-compatible tablet. Activation maps for all handwriting tasks consisted of a distributed network of regions in reasonable agreement with previous studies of handwriting performance. In addition, differences in brain activity were observed between the test subcomponents consistent with different demands of neural processing for successful task performance, as identified by investigating three quantitative behavioral metrics (writing speed, stylus contact force and stylus in air time). This study provides baseline behavioral and brain activity results for fMRI studies that adopt this handwriting test to characterize patients with brain impairments.

  9. Functional MRI of Handwriting Tasks: A Study of Healthy Young Adults Interacting with a Novel Touch-Sensitive Tablet

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mahta Karimpoor

    2018-02-01

    Full Text Available Handwriting is a complex human activity that engages a blend of cognitive and visual motor skills. Current understanding of the neural correlates of handwriting has largely come from lesion studies of patients with impaired handwriting. Task-based fMRI studies would be useful to supplement this work. To address concerns over ecological validity, previously we developed a fMRI-compatible, computerized tablet system for writing and drawing including visual feedback of hand position and an augmented reality display. The purpose of the present work is to use the tablet system in proof-of-concept to characterize brain activity associated with clinically relevant handwriting tasks, originally developed to characterize handwriting impairments in Alzheimer’s disease patients. As a prelude to undertaking fMRI studies of patients, imaging was performed of twelve young healthy subjects who copied sentences, phone numbers, and grocery lists using the fMRI-compatible tablet. Activation maps for all handwriting tasks consisted of a distributed network of regions in reasonable agreement with previous studies of handwriting performance. In addition, differences in brain activity were observed between the test subcomponents consistent with different demands of neural processing for successful task performance, as identified by investigating three quantitative behavioral metrics (writing speed, stylus contact force and stylus in air time. This study provides baseline behavioral and brain activity results for fMRI studies that adopt this handwriting test to characterize patients with brain impairments.

  10. Functional MRI of Handwriting Tasks: A Study of Healthy Young Adults Interacting with a Novel Touch-Sensitive Tablet

    Science.gov (United States)

    Karimpoor, Mahta; Churchill, Nathan W.; Tam, Fred; Fischer, Corinne E.; Schweizer, Tom A.; Graham, Simon J.

    2018-01-01

    Handwriting is a complex human activity that engages a blend of cognitive and visual motor skills. Current understanding of the neural correlates of handwriting has largely come from lesion studies of patients with impaired handwriting. Task-based fMRI studies would be useful to supplement this work. To address concerns over ecological validity, previously we developed a fMRI-compatible, computerized tablet system for writing and drawing including visual feedback of hand position and an augmented reality display. The purpose of the present work is to use the tablet system in proof-of-concept to characterize brain activity associated with clinically relevant handwriting tasks, originally developed to characterize handwriting impairments in Alzheimer’s disease patients. As a prelude to undertaking fMRI studies of patients, imaging was performed of twelve young healthy subjects who copied sentences, phone numbers, and grocery lists using the fMRI-compatible tablet. Activation maps for all handwriting tasks consisted of a distributed network of regions in reasonable agreement with previous studies of handwriting performance. In addition, differences in brain activity were observed between the test subcomponents consistent with different demands of neural processing for successful task performance, as identified by investigating three quantitative behavioral metrics (writing speed, stylus contact force and stylus in air time). This study provides baseline behavioral and brain activity results for fMRI studies that adopt this handwriting test to characterize patients with brain impairments. PMID:29487511

  11. Virtual Reality Robotic Surgery Warm-Up Improves Task Performance in a Dry Lab Environment: A Prospective Randomized Controlled Study

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lendvay, Thomas S.; Brand, Timothy C.; White, Lee; Kowalewski, Timothy; Jonnadula, Saikiran; Mercer, Laina; Khorsand, Derek; Andros, Justin; Hannaford, Blake; Satava, Richard M.

    2014-01-01

    Background Pre-operative simulation “warm-up” has been shown to improve performance and reduce errors in novice and experienced surgeons, yet existing studies have only investigated conventional laparoscopy. We hypothesized a brief virtual reality (VR) robotic warm-up would enhance robotic task performance and reduce errors. Study Design In a two-center randomized trial, fifty-one residents and experienced minimally invasive surgery faculty in General Surgery, Urology, and Gynecology underwent a validated robotic surgery proficiency curriculum on a VR robotic simulator and on the da Vinci surgical robot. Once successfully achieving performance benchmarks, surgeons were randomized to either receive a 3-5 minute VR simulator warm-up or read a leisure book for 10 minutes prior to performing similar and dissimilar (intracorporeal suturing) robotic surgery tasks. The primary outcomes compared were task time, tool path length, economy of motion, technical and cognitive errors. Results Task time (-29.29sec, p=0.001, 95%CI-47.03,-11.56), path length (-79.87mm, p=0.014, 95%CI -144.48,-15.25), and cognitive errors were reduced in the warm-up group compared to the control group for similar tasks. Global technical errors in intracorporeal suturing (0.32, p=0.020, 95%CI 0.06,0.59) were reduced after the dissimilar VR task. When surgeons were stratified by prior robotic and laparoscopic clinical experience, the more experienced surgeons(n=17) demonstrated significant improvements from warm-up in task time (-53.5sec, p=0.001, 95%CI -83.9,-23.0) and economy of motion (0.63mm/sec, p=0.007, 95%CI 0.18,1.09), whereas improvement in these metrics was not statistically significantly appreciated in the less experienced cohort(n=34). Conclusions We observed a significant performance improvement and error reduction rate among surgeons of varying experience after VR warm-up for basic robotic surgery tasks. In addition, the VR warm-up reduced errors on a more complex task (robotic

  12. Executive Function Is Necessary for Perspective Selection, Not Level-1 Visual Perspective Calculation: Evidence from a Dual-Task Study of Adults

    Science.gov (United States)

    Qureshi, Adam W.; Apperly, Ian A.; Samson, Dana

    2010-01-01

    Previous research suggests that perspective-taking and other "theory of mind" processes may be cognitively demanding for adult participants, and may be disrupted by concurrent performance of a secondary task. In the current study, a Level-1 visual perspective task was administered to 32 adults using a dual-task paradigm in which the secondary task…

  13. Negative Feedback for Small Capacitive Touchscreen Interfaces: A Usability Study for Data Entry Tasks.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Parikh, S P; Esposito, J M

    2012-01-01

    Touchscreen technology has become pervasive in the consumer product arena over the last decade, offering some distinct advantages such as software reconfigurable interfaces and the removal of space consuming mice and keyboards. However, there are significant drawbacks to these devices that have limited their adoption by some users. Most notably, standard touchscreens demand the user's visual attention and require them to look at the input device to avoid pressing the wrong button. This issue is particularly important for mobile, capacitive sensing, nonstylus devices, such as the iPhone where small button sizes can generate high error rates. While previous work has shown the benefits of augmenting such interfaces with audio or vibrotactile feedback, only positive feedback (confirmation of button presses) has been considered. In this paper, we present a simple prototype interface that provides negative vibrotactile feedback. By negative, we mean feedback is generated when an inactive or ambiguous part of the screen, such as the area between two buttons, is touched. First, we present a usability study comparing positive and negative vibrotactile feedback for a benchmark numerical data entry task. The difference in performance is not statistically significant, implying negative feedback provides comparable benefits. Next, based on the experimenter's observations and the users comments, we introduce a multimodal feedback strategy-combining complementary positive audio and negative vibrotactile signals. User tests on a text entry experiment show that, with multimodal feedback, users exhibit a (statistically significant) 24 percent reduction in corrective key presses, as compared to positive audio feedback alone. Exit survey comments indicate that users favor multimodal feedback.

  14. Hypervigilance or avoidance of trigger related cues in migraineurs? - A case-control study using the emotional stroop task

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Puschmann Anne-Katrin

    2011-11-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background "Negative affect" is one of the major migraine triggers. The aim of the study was to assess attentional biases for negative affective stimuli that might be related to migraine triggers in migraine patients with either few or frequent migraine and healthy controls. Methods Thirty-three subjects with frequent migraine (FM or with less frequent episodic migraine, and 20 healthy controls conducted two emotional Stroop tasks in the interictal period. In task 1, general affective words and in task 2, pictures of affective faces (angry, neutral, happy were used. For each task we calculated two emotional Stroop indices. Groups were compared using one-way ANOVAs. Results The expected attentional bias in migraine patients was not found. However, in task 2 the controls showed a significant attentional bias to negative faces, whereas the FM group showed indices near zero. Thus, the FM group responded faster to negative than to positive stimuli. The difference between the groups was statistically significant. Conclusions The findings in the FM group may reflect a learned avoidance mechanism away from affective migraine triggers.

  15. Facial and semantic emotional interference: A pilot study on the behavioral and cortical responses to the dual valence association task

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Petroni Agustín

    2011-04-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Integration of compatible or incompatible emotional valence and semantic information is an essential aspect of complex social interactions. A modified version of the Implicit Association Test (IAT called Dual Valence Association Task (DVAT was designed in order to measure conflict resolution processing from compatibility/incompatibly of semantic and facial valence. The DVAT involves two emotional valence evaluative tasks which elicits two forms of emotional compatible/incompatible associations (facial and semantic. Methods Behavioural measures and Event Related Potentials were recorded while participants performed the DVAT. Results Behavioural data showed a robust effect that distinguished compatible/incompatible tasks. The effects of valence and contextual association (between facial and semantic stimuli showed early discrimination in N170 of faces. The LPP component was modulated by the compatibility of the DVAT. Conclusions Results suggest that DVAT is a robust paradigm for studying the emotional interference effect in the processing of simultaneous information from semantic and facial stimuli.

  16. Nonword Repetition Priming in Lexical Decision Reverses as a Function of Study Task and Speed Stress

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zeelenberg, Rene; Wagenmakers, Eric-Jan; Shiffrin, Richard M.

    2004-01-01

    The authors argue that nonword repetition priming in lexical decision is the net result of 2 opposing processes. First, repeating nonwords in the lexical decision task results in the storage of a memory trace containing the interpretation that the letter string is a nonword; retrieval of this trace leads to an increase in performance for repeated…

  17. Making Sense of Iconic Symbols: A Study of Preschool Children Conducting a Refuse-Sorting Task

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ljung-Djärf, Agneta; Åberg-Bengtsson, Lisbeth; Ottosson, Torgny; Beach, Dennis

    2015-01-01

    This article is part of a larger project focusing upon explanatory illustrations that children encounter in pre- and primary school education. The research questions concerned (a) how preschool children make sense of iconic symbols when placing items of refuse on illustrations of refuse bins in a sorting task and (b) what stumbling blocks they…

  18. Tasks and challenges in prototype development with novel technology - an empirical study

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Ravn, Poul Martin; Guðlaugsson, Tómas Vignir; Mortensen, Niels Henrik

    2015-01-01

    This paper presents a thematic analysis of 138 monthly reports from a joint industrial and academic project where multiple prototypes were developed based on the same technology. The analysis was based on tasks and challenges described in the reports by project managers over a period of three years...

  19. Applying the Quebec Task Force criteria as a frame of reference for studies of whiplash injuries

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Versteegen, GJ; van Es, FD; Kingma, J; Meijler, WJ; ten Duis, HJ

    Research prior to 1995 showed a diversity of either inclusion or exclusion criteria (or both) for diagnosing whiplash injury. As a consequence, the Quebec Task Force (QTF) developed expert-based criteria, which may be considered as a the 'new' gold standard. Here, we examined the inclusion criteria

  20. A Pilot Study Comparing Two Nonword Repetition Tasks for Use in a Formal Test Battery

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tattersall, Patricia J.; Nelson, Nickola Wolf; Tyler, Ann A.

    2015-01-01

    Two sets of nonwords (with and without true morphemes) were compared for their ability to differentiate students in Grades 1 through 12 with and without language impairment (36 each; N = 72) on a nonword repetition task. Results indicated that either nonword type could contribute to differential diagnosis.

  1. Are forward and backward recall the same? A dual-task study of digit recall.

    Science.gov (United States)

    St Clair-Thompson, Helen L; Allen, Richard J

    2013-05-01

    There is some debate surrounding the cognitive resources underlying backward digit recall. Some researchers consider it to differ from forward digit recall due to the involvement of executive control, while others suggest that backward recall involves visuospatial resources. Five experiments therefore investigated the role of executive-attentional and visuospatial resources in both forward and backward digit recall. In the first, participants completed visuospatial 0-back and 2-back tasks during the encoding of information to be remembered. The concurrent tasks did not differentially disrupt performance on backward digit recall, relative to forward digit recall. Experiment 2 shifted concurrent load to the recall phase instead and, in this case, revealed a larger effect of both tasks on backward recall, relative to forwards recall, suggesting that backward recall may draw on additional resources during the recall phase and that these resources are visuospatial in nature. Experiments 3 and 4 then further investigated the role of visual processes in forward and backward recall using dynamic visual noise (DVN). In Experiment 3, DVN was presented during encoding of information to be remembered and had no effect upon performance. However, in Experiment 4, it was presented during the recall phase, and the results provided evidence of a role for visual imagery in backward digit recall. These results were replicated in Experiment 5, in which the same list length was used for forward and backward recall tasks. The findings are discussed in terms of both theoretical and practical implications.

  2. Emotional Facilitation Effect in the Picture-Word Interference Task: An ERP Study

    Science.gov (United States)

    Liu, Baolin; Xin, Shuai; Jin, Zhixing; Hu, Yu; Li, Yang

    2010-01-01

    In this paper, we aimed to verify the emotional facilitation effect in the picture-word interference task using event-related potentials. Twenty-one healthy subjects were asked to categorize the emotional valences of pictures accompanied by emotionally congruent, either centrally or laterally positioned Chinese words. For both the foveal and…

  3. Manipulating Task Implementation Variables with Incipient Spanish Language Learners: A Classroom-Based Study

    Science.gov (United States)

    Payant, Caroline; Reagan, Derek

    2018-01-01

    A growing body of research has shown a positive role of task-supported instruction in second language (L2) learning (Ellis, 2003a; Loewen, 2015; Van Den Branden, 2006). From a pedagogical perspective, recycling or repeating parts of teaching materials is common practice and theoretical support for such practice is emerging (Bygate and Samuda,…

  4. An Exploratory Study of the Role of Task Dependence on Team Captains' Leadership Development

    Science.gov (United States)

    Grandzol, Christian J.

    2011-01-01

    While there is evidence that team captainship in intercollegiate sports can lead to leadership development, there is little evidence about the role that task dependence may play on that effect. The individual or team nature of sports may offer different leadership experiences for team captains, leading to differential outcomes. In this exploratory…

  5. Differential preparation intervals modulate repetition processes in task switching: an ERP study

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Min eWang

    2016-02-01

    Full Text Available In task-switching paradigms, reaction times (RTs switch cost (SC and the neural correlates underlying the SC are affected by different preparation intervals. However, little is known about the effect of the preparation interval on the repetition processes in task-switching. To examine this effect we utilized a cued task-switching paradigm with long sequences of repeated trials. Response-stimulus intervals (RSI and cue-stimulus intervals (CSI were manipulated in short and long conditions. Electroencephalography (EEG and behavioral data were recorded. We found that with increasing repetitions, RTs were faster in the short CSI conditions, while P3 amplitudes decreased in the LS (long RSI and short CSI conditions. Positive correlations between RT benefit and P3 activation decrease (repeat 1 minus repeat 5, and between the slope of the RT and P3 regression lines were observed only in the LS condition. Our findings suggest that differential preparation intervals modulate repetition processes in task switching.

  6. Trade between China and the Netherlands: a case study of trade in tasks

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    den Butter, F.A.G.; Hayat, R.

    2013-01-01

    Purpose - This paper argues that the recent rise in China Dutch trade is a typical example of two nations trading tasks rather than goods. Design/methodology/approach - China Dutch trade growth between 1996 and 2010 is compared with China’s trade growth with its main partners. In addition, the

  7. Dual-Tasking Alleviated Sleep Deprivation Disruption in Visuomotor Tracking: An fMRI Study

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gazes, Yunglin; Rakitin, Brian C.; Steffener, Jason; Habeck, Christian; Butterfield, Brady; Basner, Robert C.; Ghez, Claude; Stern, Yaakov

    2012-01-01

    Effects of dual-responding on tracking performance after 49-h of sleep deprivation (SD) were evaluated behaviorally and with functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI). Continuous visuomotor tracking was performed simultaneously with an intermittent color-matching visual detection task in which a pair of color-matched stimuli constituted a…

  8. Motor dual-tasking deficits predict falls in Parkinson's disease: A prospective study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Heinzel, Sebastian; Maechtel, Mirjam; Hasmann, Sandra E; Hobert, Markus A; Heger, Tanja; Berg, Daniela; Maetzler, Walter

    2016-05-01

    Falls severely affect lives of Parkinson's disease (PD) patients. Cognitive impairment including dual-tasking deficits contribute to fall risk in PD. However, types of dual-tasking deficits preceding falls in PD are still unclear. Walking velocities during box-checking and subtracting serial 7s were assessed twice a year in 40 PD patients over 2.8 ± 1.0 years. Fourteen patients reported a fall within this period (4 excluded fallers already reported falls at baseline). Their dual-task costs (DTC; mean ± standard deviation) 4.2 ± 2.2 months before the first fall were compared with 22 patients never reporting falls. ROC analyses and logistic regressions accounting for DTC, UPDRS-III and disease duration were used for faller classification and prediction. Only walking/box-checking predicted fallers. Fallers showed higher DTC for walking while box-checking, p = 0.029, but not for box-checking while walking, p = 0.178 (combined motor DTC, p = 0.022), than non-fallers. Combined motor DTC classified fallers and non-fallers (area under curve: 0.75; 95% confidence interval, CI: 0.60-0.91) with 71.4% sensitivity (95%CI: 41.9%-91.6%) and 77.3% specificity (54.6%-92.2%), and significantly predicted future fallers (p = 0.023). Here, 20.4%-points higher combined motor DTC (i.e. the mean difference between fallers and non-fallers) was associated with a 2.6 (1.1-6.0) times higher odds to be a future faller. Motor dual-tasking is a potentially valuable predictor of falls in PD, suggesting that avoiding dual task situations as well as specific motor dual-task training might help to prevent falls in PD. These findings and their therapeutic relevance need to be further validated in PD patients without fall history, in early PD stages, and with various motor-motor dual-task challenges. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  9. Physiological Aging Influence on Brain Hemodynamic Activity during Task-Switching: A fNIRS Study

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Roberta Vasta

    2018-01-01

    Full Text Available Task-switching (TS paradigm is a well-known validated tool useful for exploring the neural substrates of cognitive control, in particular the activity of the lateral and medial prefrontal cortex. This work is aimed at investigating how physiological aging influences hemodynamic response during the execution of a color-shape TS paradigm. A multi-channel near infrared spectroscopy (fNIRS was used to measure hemodynamic activity in 27 young (30.00 ± 7.90 years and 11 elderly participants (57.18 ± 9.29 years healthy volunteers (55% male, age range: (19–69 years during the execution of a TS paradigm. Two holders were placed symmetrically over the left/right hemispheres to record cortical activity [oxy-(HbO and deoxy-hemoglobin (HbR concentration] of the dorso-lateral prefrontal cortex (DLPFC, the dorsal premotor cortex (PMC, and the dorso-medial part of the superior frontal gyrus (sFG. TS paradigm requires participants to repeat the same task over a variable number of trials, and then to switch to a different task during the trial sequence. A two-sample t-test was carried out to detect differences in cortical responses between groups. Multiple linear regression analysis was used to evaluate the impact of age on the prefrontal neural activity. Elderly participants were significantly slower than young participants in both color- (p < 0.01, t = −3.67 and shape-single tasks (p = 0.026, t = −2.54 as well as switching (p = 0.026, t = −2.41 and repetition trials (p = 0.012, t = −2.80. Differences in cortical activation between groups were revealed for HbO mean concentration of switching task in the PMC (p = 0.048, t = 2.94. In the whole group, significant increases of behavioral performance were detected in switching trials, which positively correlated with aging. Multivariate regression analysis revealed that the HbO mean concentration of switching task in the PMC (p = 0.01, β = −0.321 and of shape single-task in the sFG (p = 0.003, β = 0

  10. Physiological Aging Influence on Brain Hemodynamic Activity during Task-Switching: A fNIRS Study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vasta, Roberta; Cutini, Simone; Cerasa, Antonio; Gramigna, Vera; Olivadese, Giuseppe; Arabia, Gennarina; Quattrone, Aldo

    2017-01-01

    Task-switching (TS) paradigm is a well-known validated tool useful for exploring the neural substrates of cognitive control, in particular the activity of the lateral and medial prefrontal cortex. This work is aimed at investigating how physiological aging influences hemodynamic response during the execution of a color-shape TS paradigm. A multi-channel near infrared spectroscopy (fNIRS) was used to measure hemodynamic activity in 27 young (30.00 ± 7.90 years) and 11 elderly participants (57.18 ± 9.29 years) healthy volunteers (55% male, age range: (19-69) years) during the execution of a TS paradigm. Two holders were placed symmetrically over the left/right hemispheres to record cortical activity [oxy-(HbO) and deoxy-hemoglobin (HbR) concentration] of the dorso-lateral prefrontal cortex (DLPFC), the dorsal premotor cortex (PMC), and the dorso-medial part of the superior frontal gyrus (sFG). TS paradigm requires participants to repeat the same task over a variable number of trials, and then to switch to a different task during the trial sequence. A two-sample t -test was carried out to detect differences in cortical responses between groups. Multiple linear regression analysis was used to evaluate the impact of age on the prefrontal neural activity. Elderly participants were significantly slower than young participants in both color- ( p aging. Multivariate regression analysis revealed that the HbO mean concentration of switching task in the PMC ( p = 0.01, β = -0.321) and of shape single-task in the sFG ( p = 0.003, β = 0.342) were the best predictors of age effects. Our findings demonstrated that TS might be a reliable instrument to gather a measure of cognitive resources in older people. Moreover, the fNIRS-related brain activity extracted from frontoparietal cortex might become a useful indicator of aging effects.

  11. A Cross-Sectional and Follow-Up Functional MRI Study with a Working Memory Task in Adolescent Anorexia Nervosa

    Science.gov (United States)

    Castro-Fornieles, Josefina; Caldu, Xavier; Andres-Perpina, Susana; Lazaro, Luisa; Bargallo, Nuria; Falcon, Carles; Plana, Maria Teresa; Junque, Carme

    2010-01-01

    Structural and functional brain abnormalities have been described in anorexia nervosa (AN). The objective of this study was to examine whether there is abnormal regional brain activation during a working memory task not associated with any emotional stimuli in adolescent patients with anorexia and to detect possible changes after weight recovery.…

  12. Effect of position feedback during task-oriented upper-limb training after stroke: Five-case pilot study

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Molier, B.I.; Prange, Grada Berendina; Krabben, T.; Stienen, Arno; van der Kooij, Herman; Buurke, Jaap; Jannink, M.J.A.; Hermens, Hermanus J.

    2011-01-01

    Feedback is an important element in motor learning during rehabilitation therapy following stroke. The objective of this pilot study was to better understand the effect of position feedback during task-oriented reach training of the upper limb in people with chronic stroke. Five subjects

  13. An Exploratory Study of Teaching Tasks in English as a Foreign Language Education. Research Report. ETS RR-17-56

    Science.gov (United States)

    Turkan, Sultan; Timpe-Laughlin, Veronika; Papageorgiou, Spiros

    2017-01-01

    Due to rising demand for qualified teachers of English as a foreign language (EFL), interest in issues pertaining to the language proficiency of these teachers has increased. However, research focusing on the teaching tasks that EFL teachers engage in for the purposes of EFL instruction is scant. The present study aims to address this gap in the…

  14. Social Network Analysis as an Analytic Tool for Task Group Research: A Case Study of an Interdisciplinary Community of Practice

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lockhart, Naorah C.

    2017-01-01

    Group counselors commonly collaborate in interdisciplinary settings in health care, substance abuse, and juvenile justice. Social network analysis is a methodology rarely used in counseling research yet has potential to examine task group dynamics in new ways. This case study explores the scholarly relationships among 36 members of an…

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hedayati, Mohsen; Foomani, Elham Mohammadi

    2015-01-01

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

  16. Reasoning Abilities in Primary School: A Pilot Study on Poor Achievers vs. Normal Achievers in Computer Game Tasks

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dagnino, Francesca Maria; Ballauri, Margherita; Benigno, Vincenza; Caponetto, Ilaria; Pesenti, Elia

    2013-01-01

    This paper presents the results of preliminary research on the assessment of reasoning abilities in primary school poor achievers vs. normal achievers using computer game tasks. Subjects were evaluated by means of cognitive assessment on logical abilities and academic skills. The aim of this study is to better understand the relationship between…

  17. Oak Ridge Health Studies Phase 1 report, Volume 2: Part D, Dose Reconstruction Feasibility Study. Tasks 6, Hazard summaries for important materials at the Oak Ridge Reservation

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Bruce, G.M.; Walker, L.B.; Widner, T.E.

    1993-09-01

    The purpose of Task 6 of Oak Ridge Phase I Health Studies is to provide summaries of current knowledge of toxic and hazardous properties of materials that are important for the Oak Ridge Reservation. The information gathered in the course of Task 6 investigations will support the task of focussing any future health studies efforts on those operations and emissions which have likely been most significant in terms of off-site health risk. The information gathered in Task 6 efforts will likely also be of value to individuals evaluating the feasibility of additional health,study efforts (such as epidemiological investigations) in the Oak Ridge area and as a resource for citizens seeking information on historical emissions.

  18. A study on quantification of the information flow and effectiveness of information aids for diagnosis tasks in nuclear power plants

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Kim, Jong Hyun

    2004-02-01

    terms of time-to-task completion. As a study on human performance model, this paper evaluates the effectiveness of information aiding types based on the operator strategies for diagnosis tasks at NPPs, especially for fault identification. To evaluate the effectiveness, four aiding types which are available for supporting MCR operator's diagnosis were selected for the experiment: no aid, alarm, hypothesis with certainty factor, and hypothesis with certainty factor + expected symptom patterns. The main features of the aiding types were elicited from typical direct operator support systems for MCR operators. An experiment was conducted for 24 graduate students and subject performances were analyzed according to the strategies the subjects used in problem-solving. The experimental results show that the effect of the information aiding types on subject performance can be changed according to subject strategy. Finally, as the analysis of operator support system for MCR operators, this paper suggests a method for the quantitative evaluation of NPP decision support systems (DSSs). In this approach, the dynamic aspects of DSSs are first defined. Then, the hierarchical structure of the evaluation criteria for dynamic aspects of DSS is provided. For quantitative evaluation, the relative weights of the criteria are computed using analytic hierarchy process (AHP) to gain and aggregate the priority of the components. The criteria at the lowest level are quantified by simple numerical expressions and questionnaires which are developed to describe the characteristics of the criteria. Finally, in order to demonstrate the feasibility of this proposition, one case study is performed for the fault diagnosis module of OASYS"T"M (On-Line Operator Aid SYStem for Nuclear Power Plant), which is an operator support system developed at KAIST. In conclusion, this paper describes the practical implications in the design of MCR operator support systems

  19. On Task: Considerations and Future Directions for Studies of Corticospinal Excitability in Exercise Neuroscience and Related Disciplines.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kalmar, Jayne M

    2018-04-27

    Over the last few decades, transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS) has emerged as a conventional laboratory technique in human neurophysiological research. Exercise neuroscientists have used TMS to study central nervous system contributions to fatigue, training, and performance in health, injury, and disease. In such studies, corticospinal excitability is often assessed at rest or during simple isometric tasks with the implication that the results may be extrapolated to more functional and complex movement outside of the laboratory. However, the neural mechanisms that influence corticospinal excitability are both state- and task-dependent. Furthermore, there are many sites of modulation along the pathway from the motor cortex to the muscle; a fact that is somewhat obscured by the all-encompassing and poorly-defined term "corticospinal excitability." Therefore, the tasks we use to assess corticospinal excitability and the conclusions that we draw from such a global measure of the motor pathway must be taken into consideration. The overall objective of this review is to highlight the task-dependent nature of corticospinal excitability and the tools used to assess modulation at cortical and spinal sites of modulation. By weighing the advantages and constraints of conventional approaches to studying corticospinal excitability, and considering some new and novel approaches, we will continue to advance our understanding of the neural control of movement during exercise.

  20. Windmill-task as a New Quantitative and Objective Assessment for Mirror Movements in Unilateral Cerebral Palsy: A Pilot Study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zielinski, Ingar Marie; Steenbergen, Bert; Schmidt, Anna; Klingels, Katrijn; Simon Martinez, Cristina; de Water, Pascal; Hoare, Brian

    2018-03-23

    To introduce the Windmill-task, a new objective assessment tool to quantify the presence of mirror movements (MMs) in children with unilateral cerebral palsy (UCP), which are typically assessed with the observation-based Woods and Teuber scale (W&T). Prospective, observational, cohort pilot study. Children's hospital. Prospective cohort of children (N=23) with UCP (age range, 6-15y, mean age, 10.5±2.7y). Not applicable. The concurrent validity of the Windmill-task is assessed, and the sensitivity and specificity for MM detection are compared between both assessments. To assess the concurrent validity, Windmill-task data are compared with W&T data using Spearman rank correlations (ρ) for 2 conditions: affected hand moving vs less affected hand moving. Sensitivity and specificity are compared by measuring the mean percentage of children being assessed inconsistently across both assessments. Outcomes of both assessments correlated significantly (affected hand moving: ρ=.520; P=.005; less affected hand moving: ρ=.488; P=.009). However, many children displayed MMs on the Windmill-task, but not on the W&T (sensitivity: affected hand moving: 27.5%; less affected hand moving: 40.6%). Only 2 children displayed MMs on the W&T, but not on the Windmill-task (specificity: affected hand moving: 2.9%; less affected hand moving: 1.4%). The Windmill-task seems to be a valid tool to assess MMs in children with UCP and has an additional advantage of sensitivity to detect MMs. Copyright © 2018 American Congress of Rehabilitation Medicine. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  1. Experimental facility for containment sump reliability studies (Generic Task A-43)

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Durgin, W.W.; Padmanabhan, M.; Janik, C.R.

    1980-12-01

    On July 3, 1979, Sandia National Laboratories (Sandia) contracted the Alden Research Laboratory (ARL) to conduct tests on unresolved safety issues associated with containment sump performance during the recirculation mode (Generic Task A-43). This report describes the test facility constructed and completed under Phase I, Task III of the contract. Sump performance is determined through the observation of vortex formation in the main tank and the measurement of swirl, pressure gradient, and entrained air in the suction pipes. The use of electrically operated valves and a sophisticated data acquisition system, with computer interface, allows the test flow parameters to be set and test data to be taken (with the exception of vortex observations) from a single central office

  2. A comparative study of event-related coupling patterns during an auditory oddball task in schizophrenia

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bachiller, Alejandro; Poza, Jesús; Gómez, Carlos; Molina, Vicente; Suazo, Vanessa; Hornero, Roberto

    2015-02-01

    Objective. The aim of this research is to explore the coupling patterns of brain dynamics during an auditory oddball task in schizophrenia (SCH). Approach. Event-related electroencephalographic (ERP) activity was recorded from 20 SCH patients and 20 healthy controls. The coupling changes between auditory response and pre-stimulus baseline were calculated in conventional EEG frequency bands (theta, alpha, beta-1, beta-2 and gamma), using three coupling measures: coherence, phase-locking value and Euclidean distance. Main results. Our results showed a statistically significant increase from baseline to response in theta coupling and a statistically significant decrease in beta-2 coupling in controls. No statistically significant changes were observed in SCH patients. Significance. Our findings support the aberrant salience hypothesis, since SCH patients failed to change their coupling dynamics between stimulus response and baseline when performing an auditory cognitive task. This result may reflect an impaired communication among neural areas, which may be related to abnormal cognitive functions.

  3. A study of the performance of patients with frontal lobe lesions in a financial planning task.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Goel, V; Grafman, J; Tajik, J; Gana, S; Danto, D

    1997-10-01

    It has long been argued that patients with lesions in the prefrontal cortex have difficulties in decision making and problem solving in real-world, ill-structured situations, particularly problem types involving planning and look-ahead components. Recently, several researchers have questioned our ability to capture and characterize these deficits adequately using just the standard neuropsychological test batteries, and have called for tests that reflect real-world task requirements more accurately. We present data from 10 patients with focal lesions to the prefrontal cortex and 10 normal control subjects engaged in a real-world financial planning task. We also introduce a theoretical framework and methodology developed in the cognitive science literature for quantifying and analysing the complex data generated by problem-solving tasks. Our findings indicate that patient performance is impoverished at a global level but not at the local level. Patients have difficulty in organizing and structuring their problem space. Once they begin problem solving, they have difficulty in allocating adequate effort to each problem-solving phase. Patients also have difficulty dealing with the fact that there are no right or wrong answers nor official termination points in real-world planning problems. They also find it problematic to generate their own feedback. They invariably terminate the session before the details are fleshed out and all the goals satisfied. Finally, patients do not take full advantage of the fact that constraints on real-world problems are negotiable. However, it is not necessary to postulate a 'planning' deficit. It is possible to understand the patients' difficulties in real world planning tasks in terms of the following four accepted deficits: inadequate access to 'structured event complexes', difficulty in generalizing from particulars, failure to shift between 'mental sets', and poor judgment regarding adequacy and completeness of a plan.

  4. Stress in nonregular work arrangements: A longitudinal study of task- and employment-related aspects of stress.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vahle-Hinz, Tim

    2016-10-01

    In nonregular forms of employment, such as fixed-term or temporary agency work, 2 sources of stress must be distinguished: task-related stress components (e.g., time pressure) and employment-related stress components (e.g., effort to maintain employment). The present study investigated the relationship between task- and employment-related demands and resources and indicators of strain, well-being, work engagement, and self-rated performance in a sample of nonregular employed workers. Using a 2-wave longitudinal design, the results of autoregressive cross-lagged structural equation models demonstrated that time pressure, as a task-related demand, is positively related to strain and negatively related to well-being and self-rated performance. Autonomy, as a task-related resource, exhibited no significant relationships in the current study. Employment-related demands exhibited negative relationships with well-being and work engagement as well as negative and positive relationships with self-rated performance over time. Employment-related resources were primarily positive predictors of well-being and self-rated performance. Fit indices of comparative models indicated that reciprocal effect models (which enable causal and reverse effects) best fit the data. Accordingly, demands and resources predicted strain, well-being, work engagement, and self-rated performance over time and vice versa. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2016 APA, all rights reserved).

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2017-08-01

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

  6. P2-13: Location word Cues' Effect on Location Discrimination Task: Cross-Modal Study

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Satoko Ohtsuka

    2012-10-01

    Full Text Available As is well known, participants are slower and make more errors in responding to the display color of an incongruent color word than a congruent one. This traditional stroop effect is often accounted for with relatively automatic and dominant word processing. Although the word dominance account has been widely supported, it is not clear in what extent of perceptual tasks it is valid. Here we aimed to examine whether the word dominance effect is observed in location stroop tasks and in audio-visual situations. The participants were required to press a key according to the location of visual (Experiment 1 and audio (Experiment 2 targets, left or right, as soon as possible. A cue of written (Experiments 1a and 2a or spoken (Experiments 1b and 2b location words, “left” or “right”, was presented on the left or right side of the fixation with cue lead times (CLT of 200 ms and 1200 ms. Reaction time from target presentation to key press was recorded as a dependent variable. The results were that the location validity effect was marked in within-modality but less so in cross-modality trials. The word validity effect was strong in within- but not in cross-modality trials. The CLT gave some effect of inhibition of return. So the word dominance could be less effective in location tasks and in cross-modal situations. The spatial correspondence seems to overcome the word effect.

  7. IT-adoption and the interaction of task, technology and individuals: a fit framework and a case study

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Iller Carola

    2006-01-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Factors of IT adoption have largely been discussed in the literature. However, existing frameworks (such as TAM or TTF are failing to include one important aspect, the interaction between user and task. Method Based on a literature study and a case study, we developed the FITT framework to help analyse the socio-organisational-technical factors that influence IT adoption in a health care setting. Results Our FITT framework ("Fit between Individuals, Task and Technology" is based on the idea that IT adoption in a clinical environment depends on the fit between the attributes of the individual users (e.g. computer anxiety, motivation, attributes of the technology (e.g. usability, functionality, performance, and attributes of the clinical tasks and processes (e.g. organisation, task complexity. We used this framework in the retrospective analysis of a three-year case study, describing the adoption of a nursing documentation system in various departments in a German University Hospital. We will show how the FITT framework helped analyzing the process of IT adoption during an IT implementation: we were able to describe every found IT adoption problem with regard to the three fit dimensions, and any intervention on the fit can be described with regard to the three objects of the FITT framework (individual, task, technology. We also derive facilitators and barriers to IT adoption of clinical information systems. Conclusion This work should support a better understanding of the reasons for IT adoption failures and therefore enable better prepared and more successful IT introduction projects. We will discuss, however, that from a more epistemological point of view, it may be difficult or even impossible to analyse the complex and interacting factors that predict success or failure of IT projects in a socio-technical environment.

  8. The effects of bromazepam over the central and frontal areas during a motor task: an EEG study

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Suzete Fortunato

    2015-04-01

    Full Text Available The present study investigates the influence of bromazepam while executing a motor task. Specifically, we intend to analyze the changes in alpha absolute power under two experimental conditions, bromazepam and placebo. We also included analyses of theta and beta frequencies. We collected electroencephalographic data before, during, and after motor task execution. We used a Two Way ANOVA to investigate the condition (PL × Br6 mg and moment (pre and post variables for the following electrodes: Fp1, Fp2, F7, F3, Fz, F4, F8, C3, CZ and C4. We found a main effect for condition on the electrodes FP1, F7, F3, Fz, F4, C3 and CZ, for alpha and beta bands. For beta band we also found a main effect for condition on the electrodes Fp2, F8 and C4; for theta band we identified a main effect for condition on C3, Cz and C4 electrodes. This finding suggests that the motor task did not have any influence on the electrocortical activity in alpha, and that the existing modifications were a consequence due merely to the drug use. Despite its anxiolytic and sedative action, bromazepam did not show any significant changes when the individuals executed a finger extension motor task.

  9. Exploring stakeholders’ perceptions of a task-shifting strategy for hypertension control in Ghana: a qualitative study

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Juliet Iwelunmor

    2017-02-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background The purpose of this study was to explore stakeholders' perception of an on-going evidence-based task-shifting strategy for hypertension (TASSH in 32 community health centers and district hospitals in Ghana. Methods Using focus group discussions and in-depth interviews, qualitative data were obtained from 81 key stakeholders including patients, nurses, and site directors of participating community health centers involved in the TASSH trial. Qualitative data were analyzed using open and axial coding techniques. Results Analysis of the qualitative data revealed three themes that illustrate stakeholders' perceptions of the ongoing task-shifting strategy for blood pressure control in Ghana and they include: 1 awareness and understanding of the TASSH program; 2 reasons for participation and non-participation in TASSH; and 3 the benefit and drawbacks to the TASSH program. Conclusion The findings support evidence that successful implementation of any task-shifting strategy must focus not only on individual patient characteristics, but also consider the role contextual factors such as organizational and leadership factors play. The findings also demonstrate the importance of understanding stakeholder's perceptions of evidence-based task-shifting interventions for hypertension control as it may ultimately influence the sustainable uptake of these interventions into "real world" settings.

  10. Ontogenetic effects on gazing behaviour: a case study of kennel dogs (Labrador Retrievers) in the impossible task paradigm.

    Science.gov (United States)

    D'Aniello, Biagio; Scandurra, Anna

    2016-05-01

    Life experiences and living conditions can influence the problem-solving strategies and the communicative abilities of dogs with humans. The goals of this study were to determine any behavioural differences between Labrador Retrievers living in a kennel and those living in a house as pets and to assess whether kennel dogs show preferences in social behaviours for their caretaker relative to a stranger when they are faced with an unsolvable task. Nine Labrador Retrievers living in a kennel from birth and ten Labrador Retrievers living in a family as pets were tested. The experimental procedure consisted of three "solvable" tasks in which the dogs could easily retrieve food from a container followed by an "unsolvable" task in which the container was hermetically locked. Dogs of both groups spent the same amount of time interacting with the experimental apparatus. Kennel dogs gazed towards people for less time and with higher latency than pet dogs; however, there were no significant preferences in gazing towards the stranger versus the caretaker in both groups. These findings demonstrated that kennel dogs are less prone to use human-directed gazing behaviour when they are faced with an unsolvable problem, taking the humans into account to solve a task less than do the pet dogs.

  11. Effective Connectivity of Cortical Sensorimotor Networks During Finger Movement Tasks: A Simultaneous fNIRS, fMRI, EEG Study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Anwar, A R; Muthalib, M; Perrey, S; Galka, A; Granert, O; Wolff, S; Heute, U; Deuschl, G; Raethjen, J; Muthuraman, Muthuraman

    2016-09-01

    Recently, interest has been growing to understand the underlying dynamic directional relationship between simultaneously activated regions of the brain during motor task performance. Such directionality analysis (or effective connectivity analysis), based on non-invasive electrophysiological (electroencephalography-EEG) and hemodynamic (functional near infrared spectroscopy-fNIRS; and functional magnetic resonance imaging-fMRI) neuroimaging modalities can provide an estimate of the motor task-related information flow from one brain region to another. Since EEG, fNIRS and fMRI modalities achieve different spatial and temporal resolutions of motor-task related activation in the brain, the aim of this study was to determine the effective connectivity of cortico-cortical sensorimotor networks during finger movement tasks measured by each neuroimaging modality. Nine healthy subjects performed right hand finger movement tasks of different complexity (simple finger tapping-FT, simple finger sequence-SFS, and complex finger sequence-CFS). We focused our observations on three cortical regions of interest (ROIs), namely the contralateral sensorimotor cortex (SMC), the contralateral premotor cortex (PMC) and the contralateral dorsolateral prefrontal cortex (DLPFC). We estimated the effective connectivity between these ROIs using conditional Granger causality (GC) analysis determined from the time series signals measured by fMRI (blood oxygenation level-dependent-BOLD), fNIRS (oxygenated-O2Hb and deoxygenated-HHb hemoglobin), and EEG (scalp and source level analysis) neuroimaging modalities. The effective connectivity analysis showed significant bi-directional information flow between the SMC, PMC, and DLPFC as determined by the EEG (scalp and source), fMRI (BOLD) and fNIRS (O2Hb and HHb) modalities for all three motor tasks. However the source level EEG GC values were significantly greater than the other modalities. In addition, only the source level EEG showed a

  12. N-back Working Memory Task: Meta-analysis of Normative fMRI Studies With Children.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yaple, Zachary; Arsalidou, Marie

    2018-05-07

    The n-back task is likely the most popular measure of working memory for functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) studies. Despite accumulating neuroimaging studies with the n-back task and children, its neural representation is still unclear. fMRI studies that used the n-back were compiled, and data from children up to 15 years (n = 260) were analyzed using activation likelihood estimation. Results show concordance in frontoparietal regions recognized for their role in working memory as well as regions not typically highlighted as part of the working memory network, such as the insula. Findings are discussed in terms of developmental methodology and potential contribution to developmental theories of cognition. © 2018 Society for Research in Child Development.

  13. Al Hirschfeld's NINA as a prototype search task for studying perceptual error in radiology

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nodine, Calvin F.; Kundel, Harold L.

    1997-04-01

    Artist Al Hirschfeld has been hiding the word NINA (his daughter's name) in line drawings of theatrical scenes that have appeared in the New York Times for over 50 years. This paper shows how Hirschfeld's search task of finding the name NINA in his drawings illustrates basic perceptual principles of detection, discrimination and decision-making commonly encountered in radiology search tasks. Hirschfeld's hiding of NINA is typically accomplished by camouflaging the letters of the name and blending them into scenic background details such as wisps of hair and folds of clothing. In a similar way, pulmonary nodules and breast lesions are camouflaged by anatomic features of the chest or breast image. Hirschfeld's hidden NINAs are sometimes missed because they are integrated into a Gestalt overview rather than differentiated from background features during focal scanning. This may be similar to overlooking an obvious nodule behind the heart in a chest x-ray image. Because it is a search game, Hirschfeld assigns a number to each drawing to indicate how many NINAs he has hidden so as not to frustrate his viewers. In the radiologists' task, the number of targets detected in a medical image is determined by combining perceptual input with probabilities generated from clinical history and viewing experience. Thus, in the absence of truth, searching for abnormalities in x-ray images creates opportunities for recognition and decision errors (e.g. false positives and false negatives). We illustrate how camouflage decreases the conspicuity of both artistic and radiographic targets, compare detection performance of radiologists with lay persons searching for NINAs, and, show similarities and differences between scanning strategies of the two groups based on eye-position data.

  14. THE USE OF AHP METHOD IN THE MULTI‐CRITERIA TASK SOLVING PROCESS – CASE STUDY

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Zygmunt KORBAN

    2014-01-01

    Full Text Available In the decision‐making process, both single‐ and multi‐criteria tasks are dealt with. In the majority of cases, the selection of a solution comes down to determination of the “best” decision (most often based on the subjective assessment or to organisation of the set of decisions. The Analytic Hierarchy Process (AHP is one of the methods used for evaluation of qualitative features in the multi‐criteria optimisation processes. This article discusses the possibilities of using the above‐mentioned method, illustrated with an example of purchasing technical equipment for one of the municipal landfill sites in the Silesian Province.

  15. A comprehensive study of task coalescing for selecting parallelism granularity in a two-stage bidiagonal reduction

    KAUST Repository

    Haidar, Azzam

    2012-05-01

    We present new high performance numerical kernels combined with advanced optimization techniques that significantly increase the performance of parallel bidiagonal reduction. Our approach is based on developing efficient fine-grained computational tasks as well as reducing overheads associated with their high-level scheduling during the so-called bulge chasing procedure that is an essential phase of a scalable bidiagonalization procedure. In essence, we coalesce multiple tasks in a way that reduces the time needed to switch execution context between the scheduler and useful computational tasks. At the same time, we maintain the crucial information about the tasks and their data dependencies between the coalescing groups. This is the necessary condition to preserve numerical correctness of the computation. We show our annihilation strategy based on multiple applications of single orthogonal reflectors. Despite non-trivial characteristics in computational complexity and memory access patterns, our optimization approach smoothly applies to the annihilation scenario. The coalescing positively influences another equally important aspect of the bulge chasing stage: the memory reuse. For the tasks within the coalescing groups, the data is retained in high levels of the cache hierarchy and, as a consequence, operations that are normally memory-bound increase their ratio of computation to off-chip communication and become compute-bound which renders them amenable to efficient execution on multicore architectures. The performance for the new two-stage bidiagonal reduction is staggering. Our implementation results in up to 50-fold and 12-fold improvement (∼130 Gflop/s) compared to the equivalent routines from LAPACK V3.2 and Intel MKL V10.3, respectively, on an eight socket hexa-core AMD Opteron multicore shared-memory system with a matrix size of 24000 x 24000. Last but not least, we provide a comprehensive study on the impact of the coalescing group size in terms of cache

  16. Task demand, task management, and teamwork

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Braarud, Per Oeivind; Brendryen, Haavar

    2001-03-15

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

  17. An electrophysiological study of task demands on concreteness effects: evidence for dual coding theory.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Welcome, Suzanne E; Paivio, Allan; McRae, Ken; Joanisse, Marc F

    2011-07-01

    We examined ERP responses during the generation of word associates or mental images in response to concrete and abstract concepts. Of interest were the predictions of dual coding theory (DCT), which proposes that processing lexical concepts depends on functionally independent but interconnected verbal and nonverbal systems. ERP responses were time-locked to either stimulus onset or response to compensate for potential latency differences across conditions. During word associate generation, but not mental imagery, concrete items elicited a greater N400 than abstract items. A concreteness effect emerged at a later time point during the mental imagery task. Data were also analyzed using time-frequency analysis that investigated synchronization of neuronal populations over time during processing. Concrete words elicited an enhanced late going desynchronization of theta-band power (723-938 ms post stimulus onset) during associate generation. During mental imagery, abstract items elicited greater delta-band power from 800 to 1,000 ms following stimulus onset, theta-band power from 350 to 205 ms before response, and alpha-band power from 900 to 800 ms before response. Overall, the findings support DCT in suggesting that lexical concepts are not amodal and that concreteness effects are modulated by tasks that focus participants on verbal versus nonverbal, imagery-based knowledge.

  18. Moral dilemmas film task: A study of spontaneous narratives by individuals with autism spectrum conditions.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Barnes, Jennifer L; Lombardo, Michael V; Wheelwright, Sally; Baron-Cohen, Simon

    2009-06-01

    People with autism spectrum conditions (ASC) have difficulties with mentalizing, empathy, and narrative comprehension. A new test of social and narrative cognition, the Moral Dilemmas Film Task, was developed to probe individuals' spontaneous understanding of naturalistic film scenes. Twenty-eight individuals with ASC and 28 neurotypical controls, matched for age, sex, and IQ, watched four short emotionally charged film clips each depicting a moral dilemma, and were asked to write about what they had seen. Individuals with ASC produced significantly shorter film-based narratives and showed a smaller bias for mental states over objects in their narratives than controls. A significant correlation was found between verbal IQ and the level of mentalizing in film narratives for the ASC group, but not the control group, while the reverse pattern was found with a measure of self-reported cognitive and affective empathy. These results suggest that to the extent that both groups succeed in viewing moral dilemmas in terms of mental content, they do so in different ways, with individuals with ASC using verbal scaffolding to increase their ability to draw meaning from social scenes. The well-established empathy deficit in ASC extends to spontaneous interpretation of moral dilemmas. This new film task has the potential to assay different aspects of how the social world is represented differently in ASC, including during moral comprehension.

  19. Correlation between observation task performance and visual acuity, contrast sensitivity and environmental light in a simulated maritime study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Koefoed, Vilhelm F; Assmuss, Jörg; Høvding, Gunnar

    2018-03-25

    To examine the relevance of visual acuity (VA) and index of contrast sensitivity (ICS) as predictors for visual observation task performance in a maritime environment. Sixty naval cadets were recruited to a study on observation tasks in a simulated maritime environment under three different light settings. Their ICS were computed based on contrast sensitivity (CS) data recorded by Optec 6500 and CSV-1000E CS tests. The correlation between object identification distance and VA/ICS was examined by stepwise linear regression. The object detection distance was significantly correlated to the level of environmental light (p maritime environment may presumably be ascribed to the normal and uniform visual capacity in all our study subjects. © 2018 Acta Ophthalmologica Scandinavica Foundation. Published by John Wiley & Sons Ltd.

  20. Multi-task learning for cross-platform siRNA efficacy prediction: an in-silico study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Liu, Qi; Xu, Qian; Zheng, Vincent W; Xue, Hong; Cao, Zhiwei; Yang, Qiang

    2010-04-10

    Gene silencing using exogenous small interfering RNAs (siRNAs) is now a widespread molecular tool for gene functional study and new-drug target identification. The key mechanism in this technique is to design efficient siRNAs that incorporated into the RNA-induced silencing complexes (RISC) to bind and interact with the mRNA targets to repress their translations to proteins. Although considerable progress has been made in the computational analysis of siRNA binding efficacy, few joint analysis of different RNAi experiments conducted under different experimental scenarios has been done in research so far, while the joint analysis is an important issue in cross-platform siRNA efficacy prediction. A collective analysis of RNAi mechanisms for different datasets and experimental conditions can often provide new clues on the design of potent siRNAs. An elegant multi-task learning paradigm for cross-platform siRNA efficacy prediction is proposed. Experimental studies were performed on a large dataset of siRNA sequences which encompass several RNAi experiments recently conducted by different research groups. By using our multi-task learning method, the synergy among different experiments is exploited and an efficient multi-task predictor for siRNA efficacy prediction is obtained. The 19 most popular biological features for siRNA according to their jointly importance in multi-task learning were ranked. Furthermore, the hypothesis is validated out that the siRNA binding efficacy on different messenger RNAs(mRNAs) have different conditional distribution, thus the multi-task learning can be conducted by viewing tasks at an "mRNA"-level rather than at the "experiment"-level. Such distribution diversity derived from siRNAs bound to different mRNAs help indicate that the properties of target mRNA have important implications on the siRNA binding efficacy. The knowledge gained from our study provides useful insights on how to analyze various cross-platform RNAi data for uncovering

  1. Multi-task learning for cross-platform siRNA efficacy prediction: an in-silico study

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Xue Hong

    2010-04-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Gene silencing using exogenous small interfering RNAs (siRNAs is now a widespread molecular tool for gene functional study and new-drug target identification. The key mechanism in this technique is to design efficient siRNAs that incorporated into the RNA-induced silencing complexes (RISC to bind and interact with the mRNA targets to repress their translations to proteins. Although considerable progress has been made in the computational analysis of siRNA binding efficacy, few joint analysis of different RNAi experiments conducted under different experimental scenarios has been done in research so far, while the joint analysis is an important issue in cross-platform siRNA efficacy prediction. A collective analysis of RNAi mechanisms for different datasets and experimental conditions can often provide new clues on the design of potent siRNAs. Results An elegant multi-task learning paradigm for cross-platform siRNA efficacy prediction is proposed. Experimental studies were performed on a large dataset of siRNA sequences which encompass several RNAi experiments recently conducted by different research groups. By using our multi-task learning method, the synergy among different experiments is exploited and an efficient multi-task predictor for siRNA efficacy prediction is obtained. The 19 most popular biological features for siRNA according to their jointly importance in multi-task learning were ranked. Furthermore, the hypothesis is validated out that the siRNA binding efficacy on different messenger RNAs(mRNAs have different conditional distribution, thus the multi-task learning can be conducted by viewing tasks at an "mRNA"-level rather than at the "experiment"-level. Such distribution diversity derived from siRNAs bound to different mRNAs help indicate that the properties of target mRNA have important implications on the siRNA binding efficacy. Conclusions The knowledge gained from our study provides useful insights on how to

  2. The influence of emotional interference on cognitive control: A meta-analysis of neuroimaging studies using the emotional Stroop task

    OpenAIRE

    Song, Sensen; Zilverstand, Anna; Song, Hongwen; d?Oleire Uquillas, Federico; Wang, Yongming; Xie, Chao; Cheng, Li; Zou, Zhiling

    2017-01-01

    The neural correlates underlying the influence of emotional interference on cognitive control remain a topic of discussion. Here, we assessed 16 neuroimaging studies that used an emotional Stroop task and that reported a significant interaction effect between emotion (stimulus type) and cognitive conflict. There were a total of 330 participants, equaling 132 foci for an activation likelihood estimation (ALE) analysis. Results revealed consistent brain activation patterns related to emotionall...

  3. Study of alternative strategies to the task clarification activity of the market-pull product development process model

    OpenAIRE

    Motte, Damien

    2009-01-01

    A very large majority of the current product development process models put forward in textbooks present a homogenous structure, what Ulrich & Eppinger [1] call the market-pull model, presented as a generic one, while other possible product development process models are merely seen as variants. This paper focuses on the task clarification and derived activities (mainly the systematic search for customer needs through market study and the supplementary development costs it entails) and in...

  4. A study on the effectiveness of task manager board game as a training tool in managing project

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yusof, Shahrul Azmi Mohd; Radzi, Shanizan Herman Md; Din, Sharifah Nadera Syed; Khalid, Nurhafizah

    2016-08-01

    Nowadays, games have become one of the useful tools in training. Many instructors choose to use games to enhance the way of delivering the subject. Failure to apply the suitable tool in training will lead to discouragement in learning and causing waste to the resources. An effective game will help the student understand the concept quickly. It can also help students to get involve in experiential learning where the student can manage and solve the problem as in the actual situation. This study will focus on the effectiveness of board game as a training tool for managing projects. This game has 4 tasks to be completed by students. They will be divided into a group of 4 or 5. Two methods are used in this study, pilot test, and post-test. These methods are chosen to analyze the effectiveness of using Task Manager Board Game as a teaching tool and the improvement of student's knowledge in project management. Three sub-components assessed were motivation, user experience and learning using case studies on Kirkpatrick's level one base on the perception of the students. The result indicated that the use of Task Manager board game as a training tool for managing project has a positive impact on students. It helps students to experience the situation of managing projects. It is one of the easiest ways for improving time management, human resources and communication skill.

  5. The potential of task shifting selected maternal interventions to auxiliary midwives in Myanmar: a mixed-method study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Than, Kyu Kyu; Tin, Khaing Nwe; La, Thazin; Thant, Kyaw Soe; Myint, Theingi; Beeson, James G; Luchters, Stanley; Morgan, Alison

    2018-01-03

    An estimated 282 women die for every 100,000 live births in Myanmar, most due to preventable causes. Auxiliary Midwives (AMWs) in Myanmar are responsible for providing a package of care during pregnancy and childbirth to women in rural hard to reach areas where skilled birth attendants (Midwives) are not accessible. This study aims to examine the role of AMWs in Myanmar and to assess the current practices of three proposed essential maternal interventions (oral supplement distribution to pregnant women; administration of misoprostol to prevent postpartum haemorrhage; management of puerperal sepsis with oral antibiotics) in order to facilitate a formal integration of these tasks to AMWs in Myanmar. A mixed methods study was conducted in Magwe Region, Myanmar involving a survey of 262 AMWs, complemented by 15 focus group discussions with midwives (MWs), AMWs, mothers and community members, and 10 key informant interviews with health care providers at different levels within the health care system. According to current government policy, AMWs are responsible for identifying pregnant women, screening for danger signs and facilitating early referral, provision of counselling on nutrition and birth preparedness for women in hard-to-reach areas. AMWs also assist at normal deliveries and help MWs provide immunization services. In practice, they also provide oral supplements to pregnant women (84%), provide antibiotics to mothers during the puerperium (43%), and provide misoprostol to prevent postpartum haemorrhage (41%). The current practices of AMWs demonstrate the potential for task shifting on selected essential maternal interventions. However, to integrate these interventions into formal practice they must be complemented with appropriate training, clear guidelines on drug use, systematic recording and reporting, supportive monitoring and supervision and a clear political commitment towards task shifting. With the current national government's commitment towards one

  6. Analysis of brain activity and response to colour stimuli during learning tasks: an EEG study

    Science.gov (United States)

    Folgieri, Raffaella; Lucchiari, Claudio; Marini, Daniele

    2013-02-01

    The research project intends to demonstrate how EEG detection through BCI device can improve the analysis and the interpretation of colours-driven cognitive processes through the combined approach of cognitive science and information technology methods. To this end, firstly it was decided to design an experiment based on comparing the results of the traditional (qualitative and quantitative) cognitive analysis approach with the EEG signal analysis of the evoked potentials. In our case, the sensorial stimulus is represented by the colours, while the cognitive task consists in remembering the words appearing on the screen, with different combination of foreground (words) and background colours. In this work we analysed data collected from a sample of students involved in a learning process during which they received visual stimuli based on colour variation. The stimuli concerned both the background of the text to learn and the colour of the characters. The experiment indicated some interesting results concerning the use of primary (RGB) and complementary (CMY) colours.

  7. A tactual pilot aid for the approach-and-landing task: Inflight studies

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gilson, R. D.; Fenton, R. E.

    1973-01-01

    A pilot aid -- a kinesthetic-tactual compensatory display -- for assisting novice pilots in various inflight situations has undergone preliminary inflight testing. The efficacy of this display, as compared with two types of visual displays, was evaluated in both a highly structured approach-and-landing task and a less structured test involving tight turns about a point. In both situations, the displayed quantity was the deviation (alpha sub 0 - alpha) in angle at attack from a desired value alpha sub 0. In the former, the performance with the tactual display was comparable with that obtained using a visual display of (alpha sub 0 - alpha), while in the later, substantial improvements (reduced tracking error (55%), decreased maximum altitude variations (67%), and decreased speed variations (43%)), were obtained using the tactual display. It appears that such a display offers considerable potential for inflight use.

  8. Pilot plant study - Phase I, Task 5. Topical report, September 1994--June 1995

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    1995-07-01

    The Department of Energy (DOE) is now faced with the task of meeting decontamination and decommissioning obligations at numerous facilities by the year 2019. Due to the tremendous volume of material involved, innovative decontamination technologies are being sought that can reduce the volumes of contaminated waste materials and secondary wastes requiring disposal. With sufficient decontamination, some of the material from DOE facilities could be released as scrap into the commercial sector for recycle, thereby reducing the volume of radioactive waste requiring disposal. Although recycling may initially prove to be more costly than current disposal practices, rapidly increasing disposal costs are expected to make recycling more and more cost effective. Additionally, recycling is now perceived as the ethical choice in a world where the consequences of replacing resources and throwing away reusable materials are impacting the well-being of the environment. This report describes the solvents and decontamination of process equipment (uranium removal)

  9. Transport Assessment - Arid Task: model verification studies - FY 1983. Annual report

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Jones, T.L.; Kirkham, R.R.; Gibson, D.

    1983-08-01

    The current focus of the Transport Assessment- Arid Task is the evaluation of evaporation and transpiration submodels used in water flow models. Models will be evaluated by how accurately they simulate field water balance data. To date we have: (1) selected four evaporation models to be tested, (2) constructed an evaporation test case, and (3) started collection of data for a transpiration test case. Evaluation of the evaporation models will be completed during FY83, with results published in September. The evaporation test case contains data describing soil water content, water storage, as well as drainage rates observed in the unvegetated lysimeters of the BWTF. For example, data show deep drainage accounted for 8% of the natural precipitation, but rose to 25% after irrigation doubled total precipitation. This year, deep drainage was also observed in vegetated soils. These results refute a commonly held assumption that evapotranspiration eliminates deep drainage in arid soils

  10. Status and task of the study on the hydrogen embrittlement of zirconium alloys

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Nagase, Fumihisa; Furuta, Teruo; Seino, Shun; Komatsu, Kazushi.

    1995-08-01

    As the burnup of the LWR fuel is extended, waterside corrosion and hydrogen pickup increase in the Zircaloy cladding. Hydrogen embrittlement of Zircaloy is one of the main factors which may limit the life of the fuel rod. This report presents a review on the hydrogen embrittlement of zirconium and its alloys including the irradiated materials. Research tasks for the reduction of ductility in the high burnup fuel cladding are also discussed. Many fundamental investigations have been performed on the hydrogen embrittlement of zirconium alloys. However, the embrittlement mechanism of the high burnup fuel cladding is complicated. Especially, a coupled effect of hydrides and radiation defects are expected to be pronounced with neutron dose increase. In order to evaluate the reduction of ductility of the higher burnup fuel cladding properly, it is necessary to investigate the coupled effect of these two factors by systematic examinations. (author) 64 refs

  11. Life science payload definition and integration study, task C and D. Volume 3: Appendices

    Science.gov (United States)

    1973-01-01

    Research equipment requirements were based on the Mini-7 and Mini-30 laboratory concepts defined in Tasks A and B of the intial LSPD contract. Modified versions of these laboratories and the research equipment within them were to be used in three missions of Shuttle/Sortie Module. These were designated (1) the shared 7-day laboratory (a mission with the life sciences laboratory sharing the sortie module with another scientific laboratory), (2) the dedicated 7-day laboratory (full use of the sortie module), and (3) the dedicated 30-day laboratory (full sortie module use with a 30-day mission duration). In defining the research equipment requirements of these laboratories, the equipment was grouped according to its function, and equipment unit data packages were prepared.

  12. Task-specific ankle robotics gait training after stroke: a randomized pilot study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Forrester, Larry W; Roy, Anindo; Hafer-Macko, Charlene; Krebs, Hermano I; Macko, Richard F

    2016-06-02

    An unsettled question in the use of robotics for post-stroke gait rehabilitation is whether task-specific locomotor training is more effective than targeting individual joint impairments to improve walking function. The paretic ankle is implicated in gait instability and fall risk, but is difficult to therapeutically isolate and refractory to recovery. We hypothesize that in chronic stroke, treadmill-integrated ankle robotics training is more effective to improve gait function than robotics focused on paretic ankle impairments. Participants with chronic hemiparetic gait were randomized to either six weeks of treadmill-integrated ankle robotics (n = 14) or dose-matched seated ankle robotics (n = 12) videogame training. Selected gait measures were collected at baseline, post-training, and six-week retention. Friedman, and Wilcoxon Sign Rank and Fisher's exact tests evaluated within and between group differences across time, respectively. Six weeks post-training, treadmill robotics proved more effective than seated robotics to increase walking velocity, paretic single support, paretic push-off impulse, and active dorsiflexion range of motion. Treadmill robotics durably improved gait dorsiflexion swing angle leading 6/7 initially requiring ankle braces to self-discarded them, while their unassisted paretic heel-first contacts increased from 44 % to 99.6 %, versus no change in assistive device usage (0/9) following seated robotics. Treadmill-integrated, but not seated ankle robotics training, durably improves gait biomechanics, reversing foot drop, restoring walking propulsion, and establishing safer foot landing in chronic stroke that may reduce reliance on assistive devices. These findings support a task-specific approach integrating adaptive ankle robotics with locomotor training to optimize mobility recovery. NCT01337960. https://clinicaltrials.gov/ct2/show/NCT01337960?term=NCT01337960&rank=1.

  13. Association between central obesity and executive function as assessed by stroop task performance: A functional near-infrared spectroscopy study

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Zhangyan Deng

    2018-01-01

    Full Text Available Recent studies have suggested a link between executive function (EF and obesity. Studies often adopt body mass index (BMI, which reflects the distribution of subcutaneous fat, as the sole marker of obesity; however, BMI is inappropriate to distinguish central obesity, which indicates the centralized distribution of visceral fat. Visceral fat compared with subcutaneous fat represents greater relative lipid turnover and may increase the risk of cognitive decline in older adults. However, the relationship between EF and central obesity is largely unknown, particularly in young adults. Therefore, we used waist circumference (WC as a marker of central obesity and investigated different sensitivities between BMI and WC in the brain function. A total of 26 healthy young adults (aged 18–25 years; 42% female underwent functional near-infrared spectroscopy assessments. EF was assessed using the Stroop task, which is a classical measurement of EF. A significant Stroop effect was observed in the behavioral and hemodynamic data. In addition, we observed that behavioral interference on the Stroop task varied much more in subjects with higher BMI and WC than those subjects with lower. Elevated BMI and WC were associated with a decreased hemodynamic response during the Stroop task specifically in the prefrontal cortex (PFC. Compared to BMI, WC was more closely connected with inhibitory control and revealed right lateralized PFC activation. Our findings suggest that WC is a reliable indicator of brain function in young adults and propose a relationship between EF and central obesity.

  14. Neural correlates of interference resolution in the multi-source interference task: a meta-analysis of functional neuroimaging studies.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Deng, Yuqin; Wang, Xiaochun; Wang, Yan; Zhou, Chenglin

    2018-04-10

    Interference resolution refers to cognitive control processes enabling one to focus on task-related information while filtering out unrelated information. But the exact neural areas, which underlie a specific cognitive task on interference resolution, are still equivocal. The multi-source interference task (MSIT), as a particular cognitive task, is a well-established experimental paradigm used to evaluate interference resolution. Studies combining the MSIT with functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) have shown that the MSIT evokes the dorsal anterior cingulate cortex (dACC) and cingulate-frontal-parietal cognitive-attentional networks. However, these brain areas have not been evaluated quantitatively and these findings have not been replicated. In the current study, we firstly report a voxel-based meta-analysis of functional brain activation associated with the MSIT so as to identify the localization of interference resolution in such a specific cognitive task. Articles on MSIT-related fMRI published between 2003 and July 2017 were eligible. The electronic databases searched included PubMed, Web of Knowledge, and Google Scholar. Differential BOLD activation patterns between the incongruent and congruent condition were meta-analyzed in anisotropic effect-size signed differential mapping software. Robustness meta-analysis indicated that two significant activation clusters were shown to have reliable functional activity in comparisons between incongruent and congruent conditions. The first reliable activation cluster, which included the dACC, medial prefrontal cortex, supplementary motor area, replicated the previous MSIT-related fMRI study results. Furthermore, we found another reliable activation cluster comprising areas of the right insula, right inferior frontal gyrus, and right lenticular nucleus-putamen, which were not typically discussed in previous MSIT-related fMRI studies. The current meta-analysis study presents the reliable brain activation patterns

  15. Effects of Methylphenidate on performance of a practical pistol shooting task: a quantitative electroencephalography (qEEG study

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Paes Flávia

    2011-02-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background The present study examined absolute alpha power using quantitative electroencephalogram (qEEG in bilateral temporal and parietal cortices in novice soldiers under the influence of methylphenidate (MPH during the preparatory aiming period in a practical pistol-shooting task. We anticipated higher bi-hemispheric cortical activation in the preparatory period relative to pre-shot baseline in the methylphenidate group when compared with the control group because methylphenidate has been shown to enhance task-related cognitive functions. Methods Twenty healthy, novice soldiers were equally distributed in control (CG; n = 10 and MPH groups 10 mg (MG; n = 10 using a randomized, double blind design. Subjects performed a pistol-shooting task while electroencephalographic activity was acquired. Results We found main effects for group and practice blocks on behavioral measures, and interactions between group and phases on electroencephalographic measures for the electrodes T3, T4, P3 and P4. Regarding the behavioral measures, the MPH group demonstrated significantly poorer in shooting performance when compared with the control and, in addition, significant increases in the scores over practice blocks were found on both groups. In addition, regarding the electroencephalographic data, we observed a significant increase in alpha power over practice blocks, but alpha power was significantly lower for the MPH group when compared with the placebo group. Moreover, we observed a significant decrease in alpha power in electrodes T4 and P4 during PTM. Conclusion Although we found no correlation between behavioral and EEG data, our findings show that MPH did not prevent the learning of the task in healthy subjects. However, during the practice blocks (PBs it also did not favor the performance when compared with control group performance. It seems that the CNS effects of MPH demanded an initial readjustment period of integrated operations relative

  16. Task shifting in the management of hypertension in Kinshasa, Democratic Republic of Congo: a cross-sectional study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lulebo, Aimée M; Kaba, Didine K; Atake, Silvestre E-H; Mapatano, Mala A; Mafuta, Eric M; Mampunza, Julien M; Coppieters, Yves

    2017-12-04

    The Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC) is characterized by a high prevalence of hypertension (HTN) and a high proportion of uncontrolled HTN, which is indicative of poor HTN management. Effective management of HTN in the African region is challenging due to limited resources, particularly human resources for health. To address the shortage of health workers, the World Health Organization (WHO) recommends task shifting for better disease management and treatment. Although task shifting from doctors to nurses is being implemented in the DRC, there are no studies, to the best of our knowledge, that document the association between task shifting and HTN control. The aim of this study was to investigate the association between task shifting and HTN control in Kinshasa, DRC. We conducted a cross-sectional study in Kinshasa from December 2015 to January 2016 in five general referral hospitals (GRHs) and nine health centers (HCs). A total of 260 hypertensive patients participated in the study. Sociodemographic, clinical, health care costs and perceived health care quality assessment data were collected using a structured questionnaire. To examine the association between task shifting and HTN control, we assessed differences between GRH and HC patients using bivariate and multivariate analyses. Almost half the patients were female (53.1%), patients' mean age was 59.5 ± 11.4 years. Over three-fourths of patients had uncontrolled HTN. There was no significant difference in the proportion of GRH and HC patients with uncontrolled HTN (76.2% vs 77.7%, p = 0.771). Uncontrolled HTN was associated with co-morbidity (OR = 10.3; 95% CI: 3.8-28.3) and the type of antihypertensive drug used (OR = 4.6; 95% CI: 1.3-16.1). The mean healthcare costs in the GRHs were significantly higher than costs in the HCs (US$ 34.2 ± US$3.34 versus US$ 7.7 ± US$ 0.6, respectively). Uncontrolled HTN was not associated with the type of health facility. This finding suggests that the

  17. Differential associations between dual-task walking abilities and usual gait patterns in healthy older adults-Results from the Baltimore Longitudinal Study of Aging.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ko, Seung-Uk; Jerome, Gerald J; Simonsick, Eleanor M; Studenski, Stephanie; Hausdorff, Jeffrey M; Ferrucci, Luigi

    2018-04-27

    It is well established that facing a cognitive challenge while carrying out a motor task interferes with the motor task performance, and in general the ability of handling a dual-task declines progressively with aging. However, the reasons for this decline have not been fully elucidated. Understanding the association between usual-walking gait patterns and dual-task walking performance may provide new insights into the mechanisms that lead to gait deterioration in normal aging and its link to motor and cognitive function. Our aim was to assess usual gait parameters in kinematics and kinetics to understand how these parameters are related with a specific task in dual-task walking. We hypothesized that difficulty in dual-task walking would be associated with gait deteriorations as reflected in range of motion and mechanical work expenditure. We tested this hypothesis by quantifying the gait of 383 participants in the Baltimore Longitudinal Study of Aging (68% of whom successfully completed the dual-task walk, 21% failed the motor task, and 11% failed the cognitive task). Compared to successful performers, participants who failed the single motor task had slower gait speed, shorter stride length, higher cadence, and lower range of motion in the knee and ankle joints (p task while walking had longer double support time (p = 0.003), and greater knee absorptive mechanical work (p = 0. 001) and lower ankle generative mechanical work (p task walking may be useful for monitoring subtle and diverse gait deteriorations in aging and possibly for designing interventions for maintaining and regaining proper gait patterns in older adults. Copyright © 2018 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  18. Relative association of processing speed, short-term memory and sustained attention with task on gait speed: a study of community-dwelling people 50 years and older.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Killane, Isabelle; Donoghue, Orna A; Savva, George M; Cronin, Hilary; Kenny, Rose Anne; Reilly, Richard B

    2014-11-01

    For single gait tasks, associations have been reported between gait speed and cognitive domains. However, few studies have evaluated if this association is altered in dual gait tasks given gait speed changes with complexity and nature of task. We evaluated relative contributions of specific elements of cognitive function (including sustained attention and processing speed) to dual task gait speed in a nationally representative population of community-dwelling adults over 50 years. Gait speed was obtained using the GaitRite walkway during three gait tasks: single, cognitive (alternate letters), and motor (carrying a filled glass). Linear regression models, adjusted for covariates, were constructed to predict the relative contributions of seven neuropsychological tests to gait speed differences and to investigate gait task effects. The mean age and gait speed of the population (n = 4,431, 55% women) was 62.4 years (SD = 8.2) and 135.85 cm/s (SD = 20.20, single task), respectively. Poorer processing speed, short-term memory, and sustained attention were major cognitive contributors to slower gait speed for all gait tasks. Both dual gait tasks were robust to covariate adjustment and had a significant additional executive function element not found for the single gait task. For community-dwelling older adults processing speed, short-term memory and sustained attention were independently associated with gait speed for all gait tasks. Dual gait tasks were found to highlight specific executive function elements. This result forms a baseline value for dual task gait speed. © The Author 2014. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of The Gerontological Society of America. All rights reserved. For permissions, please e-mail: journals.permissions@oup.com.

  19. Sensitivity and reliability of language laterality assessment with a free reversed association task - a fMRI study

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Fesl, Gunther; Brueckmann, Hartmut; Bruhns, Philipp; Rau, Sabine; Ilmberger, Josef; Wiesmann, Martin; Kegel, Gerd

    2010-01-01

    The aim of the study was to evaluate the sensitivity and reliability of assessing hemispheric language dominance with functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) using a 'free reversed association task.' Thirty-nine healthy subjects (13 dextrals, 13 sinistrals and 13 bimanuals) underwent two repeated fMRI sessions. In the active phases sets of words were presented via headphones, and an associated target item was named. During the baseline phases a standard answer was given after listening to unintelligible stimuli. Data were preprocessed with SPM, and then laterality indices (LI) and reliability coefficients (RC) were calculated. Extensive frontal, temporal and parietal activations were found. Seventy-eight percent of the subjects showed left-hemispheric dominance, 5% showed right-hemispheric dominance, and 17% had bilateral language representations. The incidence of right-hemispheric language dominance was 4.3 times higher in a left-hander with a handedness quotient (HQ) of -90 than in a right-hander with a HQ of +90. The RC was 0.61 for combined ROIs (global network). Strong correlations were found between the two session LIs (r = 0.95 for the global network). 'Free reversed association' is a sensitive and reliable task for the determination of individual language lateralization. This suggests that the task may be used in a clinical setting. (orig.)

  20. Sensitivity and reliability of language laterality assessment with a free reversed association task - a fMRI study

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Fesl, Gunther; Brueckmann, Hartmut [University of Munich, Department of Neuroradiology, Campus Grosshadern, Marchioninistr. 15, 81377, Munich (Germany); Bruhns, Philipp [University of Munich, Department of Neuroradiology, Campus Grosshadern, Marchioninistr. 15, 81377, Munich (Germany); University of Munich, Department of Psycholinguistics, Munich (Germany); Rau, Sabine; Ilmberger, Josef [University of Munich, Department of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation, Munich (Germany); Wiesmann, Martin [Helios Hospitals Schwerin, Department of Radiology and Neuroradiology, Schwerin (Germany); Kegel, Gerd [University of Munich, Department of Psycholinguistics, Munich (Germany)

    2010-03-15

    The aim of the study was to evaluate the sensitivity and reliability of assessing hemispheric language dominance with functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) using a 'free reversed association task.' Thirty-nine healthy subjects (13 dextrals, 13 sinistrals and 13 bimanuals) underwent two repeated fMRI sessions. In the active phases sets of words were presented via headphones, and an associated target item was named. During the baseline phases a standard answer was given after listening to unintelligible stimuli. Data were preprocessed with SPM, and then laterality indices (LI) and reliability coefficients (RC) were calculated. Extensive frontal, temporal and parietal activations were found. Seventy-eight percent of the subjects showed left-hemispheric dominance, 5% showed right-hemispheric dominance, and 17% had bilateral language representations. The incidence of right-hemispheric language dominance was 4.3 times higher in a left-hander with a handedness quotient (HQ) of -90 than in a right-hander with a HQ of +90. The RC was 0.61 for combined ROIs (global network). Strong correlations were found between the two session LIs (r = 0.95 for the global network). 'Free reversed association' is a sensitive and reliable task for the determination of individual language lateralization. This suggests that the task may be used in a clinical setting. (orig.)

  1. Electroencephalogram oscillations support the involvement of task-unrelated thoughts in the mechanism of boredom: A pilot study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Miyauchi, Eri; Kawasaki, Masahiro

    2018-06-11

    Boredom is a universal experience; however, the neural mechanisms underlying the phenomenon remain unclear. Previous research suggests that boredom is related to attentional failure and derives a possible explanation for the cognitive processes of boredom as a product of appraisals made about task-unrelated thoughts. There are little published data regarding proposed processes from neuroscientific perspectives. Therefore, the authors aimed to examine whether cognitive processes of boredom with task-unrelated thoughts followed by appraisals of them can be explained by examining oscillatory correlates. Electroencephalography was used to measure changes in neural oscillatory activity during subjective experiences of boredom or dislike in healthy subjects. Using this approach, temporal information of brain activity particular to the boredom experience was acquired. Additionally, the Adult Attention-Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder Self-Report Scale was used to evaluate the effects of attentional deficits in the neural processing of boredom. Tonic increase in theta and transient increases in alpha activity were exhibited before the key press response for experiencing boredom; however, only tonic increases in theta amplitudes were boredom specific. The results of this pilot study suggest that the boredom experience is possibly associated with cognitive processes involved in task-unrelated thoughts, followed by their appraisals to be bored, mediated by alpha and theta activity. Copyright © 2018 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  2. Reproducibility of task activation using the Addenbrooke's cognitive examination in healthy controls: A functional Transcranial Doppler ultrasonography study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Beishon, L; Williams, C A L; Panerai, R B; Robinson, T G; Haunton, V J

    2017-11-01

    Cerebral blood flow velocity (CBFv) changes occurring with cognitive stimulation can be measured by Transcranial Doppler ultrasonography (TCD). The aim of this study was to assess the reproducibility of CBFv changes to the Addenbrooke's cognitive examination (ACE-III). 13 volunteers underwent bilateral TCD (middle cerebral artery), continuous heart rate (HR, 3-lead ECG, Finometer), beat-to-beat mean arterial pressure (MAP, Finometer), and end-tidal CO 2 (ETCO 2 , capnography). After 5min baseline, all ACE-III tasks were performed in 3 domains (A/B/C). Data presented are population CBFv peak normalised changes and area under the curve (AUC). Statistical analysis was by 2-way repeated measures (ANOVA), intra-class correlation coefficient (ICC), standard error of measurement (SEM) and coefficient of variation (CV). 12 bilateral data sets were obtained (10 right hand dominant, 6 female). Baseline parameters (MAP, HR, ETCO 2 ) did not differ between visits. All tasks increased CBFv. Only domain A on AUC analysis differed significantly on ANOVA, and one task on post hoc testing (p examine reproducibility of CBFv changes to a complete cognitive assessment tool. Reproducibility of CBFv measurements to the ACE-III was variable. AUC may provide more reliable estimates than peak CBFv responses. These data need validating in patient populations. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  3. Mineralocorticoid receptor stimulation effects on spatial memory in healthy young adults: A study using the virtual Morris Water Maze task.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Piber, Dominique; Schultebraucks, Katharina; Mueller, Sven C; Deuter, Christian Eric; Wingenfeld, Katja; Otte, Christian

    2016-12-01

    Stress hormones such as cortisol are known to influence a wide range of cognitive functions, including hippocampal based spatial memory. In the brain, cortisol acts via two different receptors: the glucocorticoid (GR) and the mineralocorticoid receptor (MR). As the MR has a high density in the hippocampus, we examined the effects of pharmacological MR stimulation on spatial memory. Eighty healthy participants (40 women, 40 men, mean age=23.9years±SD=3.3) completed the virtual Morris Water Maze (vMWM) task to test spatial encoding and spatial memory retrieval after receiving 0.4mg fludrocortisone, a MR agonist, or placebo. There was no effect of MR stimulation on spatial encoding during the vMWM task. However, participants who received fludrocortisone exhibited improved spatial memory retrieval performance. There was neither a main effect of sex nor a sex-by-treatment interaction. In young healthy participants, MR stimulation improved hippocampal based spatial memory retrieval in a virtual Morris Water Maze task. Our study not only confirms the importance of MR function in spatial memory, but suggests beneficial effects of acute MR stimulation on spatial memory retrieval in humans. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  4. Action observation versus motor imagery in learning a complex motor task: a short review of literature and a kinematics study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gatti, R; Tettamanti, A; Gough, P M; Riboldi, E; Marinoni, L; Buccino, G

    2013-04-12

    Both motor imagery and action observation have been shown to play a role in learning or re-learning complex motor tasks. According to a well accepted view they share a common neurophysiological basis in the mirror neuron system. Neurons within this system discharge when individuals perform a specific action and when they look at another individual performing the same or a motorically related action. In the present paper, after a short review of literature on the role of action observation and motor imagery in motor learning, we report the results of a kinematics study where we directly compared motor imagery and action observation in learning a novel complex motor task. This involved movement of the right hand and foot in the same angular direction (in-phase movement), while at the same time moving the left hand and foot in an opposite angular direction (anti-phase movement), all at a frequency of 1Hz. Motor learning was assessed through kinematics recording of wrists and ankles. The results showed that action observation is better than motor imagery as a strategy for learning a novel complex motor task, at least in the fast early phase of motor learning. We forward that these results may have important implications in educational activities, sport training and neurorehabilitation. Copyright © 2013 Elsevier Ireland Ltd. All rights reserved.

  5. Stiffness control of balance during dual task and prospective falls in older adults: the MOBILIZE Boston Study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kang, Hyun Gu; Quach, Lien; Li, Wenjun; Lipsitz, Lewis A

    2013-09-01

    Outdoor fallers differ from indoor fallers substantially in demographics, lifestyle, health condition and physical function. Biomechanical predictors of outdoor falls have not been well characterized. Current validated measures of postural deficits, which describe only the overall postural behavior, are predictive of indoor falls but not outdoor falls. We hypothesized that a model-based description of postural muscle tone and reflexes, particularly during dual tasking, would predict outdoor falls. We tested whether postural stiffness and damping from an inverted pendulum model were predictive of future indoor and outdoor falls among older adults from the MOBILIZE Boston Study. The center of pressure data during standing were obtained from 717 participants aged 77.9±5.3 years. Participants stood barefoot with eyes open for 30s per trial, in two sets of five standing trials. One set included a serial subtractions task. Postural stiffness and damping values were determined from the postural sway data. After the postural measurements, falls were monitored prospectively using a monthly mail-in calendar over 6-36 months. Associations of postural measures with fall rates were determined using negative binomial regressions. After covariate adjustments, postural stiffness (p=0.02-0.05) and damping (p=0.007-0.1) were associated with lower outdoor falls risk, but not with indoor falls. Results were invariant by direction (anteroposterior versus mediolateral) or by condition (quiet standing versus dual task). Outdoor fall risk may be tied to postural control more so than indoor falls. Dual tasking is likely related to fall risk among older and sicker older adults, but not those relatively healthy. Copyright © 2013 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  6. Environmental heat stress enhances mental fatigue during sustained attention task performing: evidence from an ASL perfusion study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Qian, Shaowen; Li, Min; Li, Guoying; Liu, Kai; Li, Bo; Jiang, Qingjun; Li, Li; Yang, Zhen; Sun, Gang

    2015-03-01

    This study was to investigate the potential enhancing effect of heat stress on mental fatigue progression during sustained attention task using arterial spin labeling (ASL) imaging. Twenty participants underwent two thermal exposures in an environmental chamber: normothermic (NT) condition (25°C, 1h) and hyperthermic (HT) condition (50°C, 1h). After thermal exposure, they performed a twenty-minute psychomotor vigilance test (PVT) in the scanner. Behavioral analysis revealed progressively increasing subjective fatigue ratings and reaction time as PVT progressed. Moreover, heat stress caused worse performance. Perfusion imaging analyses showed significant resting-state cerebral blood flow (CBF) alterations after heat exposure. Specifically, increased CBF mainly gathered in thalamic-brainstem area while decreased CBF predominantly located in fronto-parietal areas, anterior cingulate cortex, posterior cingulate cortex, and medial frontal cortex. More importantly, diverse CBF distributions and trend of changes between both conditions were observed as the fatigue level progressed during subsequent PVT task. Specifically, higher CBF and enhanced rising trend were presented in superior parietal lobe, precuneus, posterior cingulate cortex and anterior cingulate cortex, while lower CBF or inhibited rising trend was found in dorsolateral frontal cortex, medial frontal cortex, inferior parietal lobe and thalamic-brainstem areas. Furthermore, the decrease of post-heat resting-state CBF in fronto-parietal cortex was correlated with subsequent slower reaction time, suggesting prior disturbed resting-state CBF might be indicator of performance potential and fatigue level in following task. These findings may provide proof for such a view: heat stress has a potential fatigue-enhancing effect when individual is performing highly cognition-demanding attention task. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  7. Task Related Cerebral Blood Flow Changes of Patients with Chronic Fatigue Syndrome: An Arterial Spin Labeling Study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Staud, Roland; Boissoneault, Jeff; Craggs, Jason G; Lai, Song; Robinson, Michael E

    2018-01-01

    One hallmark of chronic fatigue syndrome (ME/CFS) is task related worsening of fatigue. Global brain hypoperfusion, abnormal regional activation, and altered functional connectivity of brain areas associated with cognition and memory have been reported but remain controversial. We enrolled 17 female participants fulfilling the CDC Criteria for ME/CFS and 16 matched healthy controls (HC). Using a 3T-Phillips Achieva MRI-scanner, pseudo-continuous arterial spin-labeling (pCASL), was used to study the dynamics of regional cerebral blood flow (rCBF) and their relationship to mental fatigue in ME/CFS patients and HC during a demanding cognitive task, i.e. modified Paced-Auditory-Serial-Addition-Testing (PASAT). ME/CFS subjects reported more fatigue than HC at baseline (p fatigue in ME/CFS participants and HC. Although not different between groups, overall CBF significantly increased over the first 3 min of the PASAT and then decreased thereafter. Regional CBF (rCBF) changes were significantly different between groups during the post-task recovery period. Whereas improvement of fatigue of ME/CFS subjects was associated with decreased rCBF in both superior temporal gyri (STG), precuneus, and fusiform gyrus, it was associated with increased rCBF in the same areas in HC. Our results suggest that ME/CFS is associated with normal global CBF at rest and during a strenuous task (PASAT); however rCBF of several brain regions associated with memory, goal-oriented attention, and visual function was differentially associated with recovery from fatigue in ME/CFS patients and HC.

  8. Caffeine improves anticipatory processes in task switching

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Tieges, Zoe; Snel, Jan; Kok, Albert; Wijnen, Jasper G.; Lorist, Monicque M.; Ridderinkhof, K. Richard

    We studied the effects of moderate amounts of caffeine on task switching and task maintenance using mixed-task (AABB) blocks, in which participants alternated predictably between two tasks, and single-task (AAAA, BBBB) blocks. Switch costs refer to longer reaction times (RT) on task switch trials

  9. Cerebral activation during Chinese semantic associative task in Xinjiang' Uyghurs: a functional MRI study

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Yang Lixia; Jia Wenxiao; Tang Weijun; Wang Hong; Ding Shuang; Wang Hao

    2010-01-01

    Objective: To explore the cerebral activation in Xinjiang' Uyghurs when performing a Chinese word tasks by the functional magnetic resonance image (fMRI). Methods: Twenty-one healthy Xinjiang' Uyghurs and 11 healthy Hans were scanned using functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) on a 1.5 T MRI scanner with a single run. Different Chinese words were displayed in each block to avoid any practice effect. SPM5.0 software was used for image data processing. To evaluate the inter subject consistency of brain activations associated with Chinese character and word reading, we created penetrance maps by combining binary individual functional maps. Results: For Uyghur-Chinese bilingual subjects, activations related to generated a word that was semantically related to each stimulus. The results indicated that reading Chinese is characterized by extensive activity of the neural systems. Peak activations occurred in the left middle frontal cortex at Brodmann Areas (BA9 and BA47). The left temporal (BA37) cortices were also strongly activated. Other important activated areas included bilateral visual systems (BA17-19) and cerebellum. The location of peak activation in the left frontal regions was similar in Native Uyghurs and Hans. But the active areas in Uyghurs are more extensive than that of Hans. Conclusions: The location of peak activation in the left frontal regions was similar in Native Uyghurs and Hans. More brain areas were needed for Xinjiang' Uyghur speakers during processing Chinese words. (authors)

  10. Earthquake experience interference effects in a modified Stroop task: an ERP study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wei, Dongtao; Qiu, Jiang; Tu, Shen; Tian, Fang; Su, Yanhua; Luo, Yuejia

    2010-05-03

    The effects of the modified Stroop task on ERP were investigated in 20 subjects who had experienced the Sichuan earthquake and a matched control group. ERP data showed that Incongruent stimuli elicited a more negative ERP deflection (N300-450) than did Congruent stimuli between 300 and 450 ms post-stimulus in the earthquake group but not found in the control group, and the N300-450 might reflect conflict monitor (the information of color and meaning do not match) in the early phase of perception identification due to their sensitivity to the external stimulus. Then, Incongruent stimuli elicited a more negative ERP deflection than did Congruent stimuli between 450 and 650 ms post-stimulus in both the groups. Dipole source analysis showed that the N450-650 was mainly generated in the ACC contributed to this effect in the control group, which might be related to monitor and conflict resolution. However, in the earthquake group, the N450-650 was generated in the thalamus, which might be involved in inhibiting and compensating of the ACC which may be related to conflict resolution process. 2010 Elsevier Ireland Ltd. All rights reserved.

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

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    Dixit, Abhinav; Mittal, Tushar

    2015-01-01

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

  12. The Effects of Direction of Exertion, Path, and Load Placement in Nursing Cart Pushing and Pulling Tasks: An Electromyographical Study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kao, Huei Chu; Lin, Chiuhsiang Joe; Lee, Yung Hui; Chen, Su Huang

    2015-01-01

    The purpose of this study was to explore the effects of direction of exertion (DOE) (pushing, pulling), path (walking in a straight line, turning left, walking uphill), and load placement (LP) (the 18 blocks were indicated by X, Y and Z axis; there were 3 levels on the X axis, 2 levels on the Y axis, and 3 levels on the Z axis) on muscle activity and ratings of perceived exertion in nursing cart pushing and pulling tasks. Ten participants who were female students and not experienced nurses were recruited to participate in the experiment. Each participant performed 108 experimental trials in the study, consisting of 2 directions of exertion (push and pull), 3 paths, and 18 load placements (indicated by X, Y and Z axes). A 23kg load was placed into one load placement. The dependent variables were electromyographic (EMG) data of four muscles collected bilaterally as follows: Left (L) and right (R) trapezius (TR), flexor digitorum superficialis (FDS), extensor digitorum (ED), and erector spinae (ES) and subjective ratings of perceived exertion (RPE). Split-split-plot ANOVA was conducted to analyze significant differences between DOE, path, and LP in the EMG and RPE data. Pulling cart tasks produced a significantly higher activation of the muscles (RTR:54.4%, LTR:50.3%, LFDS:57.0%, LED:63.4%, RES:40.7%, LES:36.7%) than pushing cart tasks (RTR:42.4%, LTR:35.1%, LFDS:32.3%, LED:55.1%, RES:33.3%, LES:32.1%). A significantly greater perceived exertion was found in pulling cart tasks than pushing cart tasks. Significantly higher activation of all muscles and perceived exertion were observed for walking uphill than walking in a straight line and turning left. Significantly lower muscle activity of all muscles and subject ratings were observed for the central position on the X axis, the bottom position on the Y axis, and the posterior position on the Z axis. These findings suggest that nursing staff should adopt forward pushing when moving a nursing cart, instead of backward

  13. Affective decision making under uncertainty during a plausible aviation task: an fMRI study.

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    Causse, Mickaël; Péran, Patrice; Dehais, Frédéric; Caravasso, Chiara Falletta; Zeffiro, Thomas; Sabatini, Umberto; Pastor, Josette

    2013-05-01

    In aeronautics, plan continuation error (PCE) represents failure to revise a flight plan despite emerging evidence suggesting that it is no longer safe. Assuming that PCE may be associated with a shift from cold to hot reasoning, we hypothesized that this transition may result from a large range of strong negative emotional influences linked with the decision to abort a landing and circle for a repeat attempt, referred to as a "go-around". We investigated this hypothesis by combining functional neuroimaging with an ecologically valid aviation task performed under contextual variation in incentive and situational uncertainty. Our goal was to identify regional brain activity related to the sorts of conservative or liberal decision-making strategies engaged when participants were both exposed to a financial payoff matrix constructed to bias responses in favor of landing acceptance, while they were simultaneously experiencing maximum levels of uncertainty related to high levels of stimulus ambiguity. Combined with the observed behavioral outcomes, our neuroimaging results revealed a shift from cold to hot decision making in response to high uncertainty when participants were exposed to the financial incentive. Most notably, while we observed activity increases in response to uncertainty in many frontal regions such as dorsolateral prefrontal cortex (DLPFC) and anterior cingulate cortex (ACC), less overall activity was observed when the reward was combined with uncertainty. Moreover, participants with poor decision making, quantified as a lower discriminability index d', exhibited riskier behavior coupled with lower activity in the right DLPFC. These outcomes suggest a disruptive effect of biased financial incentive and high uncertainty on the rational decision-making neural network, and consequently, on decision relevance. Copyright © 2013 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  14. Does skill retention benefit from retentivity and symbolic rehearsal? - two studies with a simulated process control task.

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    Kluge, Annette; Frank, Barbara; Maafi, Sanaz; Kuzmanovska, Aleksandra

    2016-05-01

    Two experiments were designed to compare two symbolic rehearsal refresher interventions (imaginary practice, a hidden introspective process) and investigate the role of retentivity in skill retention. Retentivity is investigated as the ability to memorise and reproduce information and associations that were learned a short time ago. Both experiments comprised initial training (week 1), a symbolic rehearsal for the experimental group (week 2) and a retention assessment (week 3). In the first study, the experimental group received a symbolic rehearsal, while the control group received no rehearsal. In the second study, the experimental group received the same symbolic rehearsal used in study 1, enhanced with rehearsal tasks addressing human-computer interaction. The results showed that both symbolic rehearsal interventions were equally likely to mitigate skill decay. The retentivity showed medium to high correlations with skill retention in both studies, and the results suggest that subjects high in retentivity benefit more from a symbolic rehearsal refresher intervention. Practitioner Summary: Skill decay becomes a problem in situations in which jobs require the correct mastery of non-routine situations. Two experimental studies with simulated process control tasks showed that symbolic rehearsal and retentivity can significantly mitigate skill decay and that subjects higher in retentivity benefit more from refresher interventions.

  15. What Top-Down Task Sets Do for Us: An ERP Study on the Benefits of Advance Preparation in Visual Search

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    Eimer, Martin; Kiss, Monika; Nicholas, Susan

    2011-01-01

    When target-defining features are specified in advance, attentional target selection in visual search is controlled by preparatory top-down task sets. We used ERP measures to study voluntary target selection in the absence of such feature-specific task sets, and to compare it to selection that is guided by advance knowledge about target features.…

  16. Functional Magnetic Resonance Imaging Study of Piaget's Conservation-of-Number Task in Preschool and School-Age Children: A Neo-Piagetian Approach

    Science.gov (United States)

    Houde, Olivier; Pineau, Arlette; Leroux, Gaelle; Poirel, Nicolas; Perchey, Guy; Lanoe, Celine; Lubin, Amelie; Turbelin, Marie-Renee; Rossi, Sandrine; Simon, Gregory; Delcroix, Nicolas; Lamberton, Franck; Vigneau, Mathieu; Wisniewski, Gabriel; Vicet, Jean-Rene; Mazoyer, Bernard

    2011-01-01

    Jean Piaget's theory is a central reference point in the study of logico-mathematical development in children. One of the most famous Piagetian tasks is number conservation. Failures and successes in this task reveal two fundamental stages in children's thinking and judgment, shifting at approximately 7 years of age from visuospatial intuition to…

  17. Effect of the cognitive-motor dual-task using auditory cue on balance of surviviors with chronic stroke: a pilot study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Choi, Wonjae; Lee, GyuChang; Lee, Seungwon

    2015-08-01

    To investigate the effect of a cognitive-motor dual-task using auditory cues on the balance of patients with chronic stroke. Randomized controlled trial. Inpatient rehabilitation center. Thirty-seven individuals with chronic stroke. The participants were randomly allocated to the dual-task group (n=19) and the single-task group (n=18). The dual-task group performed a cognitive-motor dual-task in which they carried a circular ring from side to side according to a random auditory cue during treadmill walking. The single-task group walked on a treadmill only. All subjects completed 15 min per session, three times per week, for four weeks with conventional rehabilitation five times per week over the four weeks. Before and after intervention, both static and dynamic balance were measured with a force platform and using the Timed Up and Go (TUG) test. The dual-task group showed significant improvement in all variables compared to the single-task group, except for anteroposterior (AP) sway velocity with eyes open and TUG at follow-up: mediolateral (ML) sway velocity with eye open (dual-task group vs. single-task group: 2.11 mm/s vs. 0.38 mm/s), ML sway velocity with eye close (2.91 mm/s vs. 1.35 mm/s), AP sway velocity with eye close (4.84 mm/s vs. 3.12 mm/s). After intervention, all variables showed significant improvement in the dual-task group compared to baseline. The study results suggest that the performance of a cognitive-motor dual-task using auditory cues may influence balance improvements in chronic stroke patients. © The Author(s) 2014.

  18. The effects of a mid-task break on the brain connectome in healthy participants: A resting-state functional MRI study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sun, Yu; Lim, Julian; Dai, Zhongxiang; Wong, KianFoong; Taya, Fumihiko; Chen, Yu; Li, Junhua; Thakor, Nitish; Bezerianos, Anastasios

    2017-05-15

    Although rest breaks are commonly administered as a countermeasure to reduce mental fatigue and boost cognitive performance, the effects of taking a break on behavior are not consistent. Moreover, our understanding of the underlying neural mechanisms of rest breaks and how they modulate mental fatigue is still rudimentary. In this study, we investigated the effects of receiving a rest break on the topological properties of brain connectivity networks via a two-session experimental paradigm, in which one session comprised four successive blocks of a mentally demanding visual selective attention task (No-rest session), whereas the other contained a rest break between the second and third task blocks (Rest session). Functional brain networks were constructed using resting-state functional MRI data recorded from 20 healthy adults before and after the performance of the task blocks. Behaviorally, subjects displayed robust time-on-task (TOT) declines, as reflected by increasingly slower reaction time as the test progressed and lower post-task self-reported ratings of engagement. However, we did not find a significant effect on task performance due to administering a mid-task break. Compared to pre-task measurements, post-task functional brain networks demonstrated an overall decrease of optimal small-world properties together with lower global efficiency. Specifically, we found TOT-related reduced nodal efficiency in brain regions that mainly resided in the subcortical areas. More interestingly, a significant block-by-session interaction was revealed in local efficiency, attributing to a significant post-task decline in No-rest session and a preserved local efficiency when a mid-task break opportunity was introduced in the Rest session. Taken together, these findings augment our understanding of how the resting brain reorganizes following the accumulation of prolonged task, suggest dissociable processes between the neural mechanisms of fatigue and recovery, and provide

  19. Performance of an Additional Task During Level 2 Automated Driving: An On-Road Study Comparing Drivers With and Without Experience With Partial Automation.

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    Solís-Marcos, Ignacio; Ahlström, Christer; Kircher, Katja

    2018-05-01

    To investigate the influence of prior experience with Level 2 automation on additional task performance during manual and Level 2 partially automated driving. Level 2 automation is now on the market, but its effects on driver behavior remain unclear. Based on previous studies, we could expect an increase in drivers' engagement in secondary tasks during Level 2 automated driving, but it is yet unknown how drivers will integrate all the ongoing demands in such situations. Twenty-one drivers (12 without, 9 with Level 2 automation experience) drove on a highway manually and with Level 2 automation (exemplified by Volvo Pilot Assist generation 2; PA2) while performing an additional task. In half of the conditions, the task could be interrupted (self-paced), and in the other half, it could not (system-paced). Drivers' visual attention, additional task performance, and other compensatory strategies were analyzed. Driving with PA2 led to decreased scores in the additional task and more visual attention to the dashboard. In the self-paced condition, all drivers looked more to the task and perceived a lower mental demand. The drivers experienced with PA2 used the system and the task more than the novice group and performed more overtakings. The additional task interfered more with Level 2 automation than with manual driving. The drivers, particularly the automation novice drivers, used some compensatory strategies. Automation designers need to consider these potential effects in the development of future automated systems.

  20. Effects of noise and task loading on a communication task loading on a communication task

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    Orrell, Dean H., II

    Previous research had shown the effect of noise on a single communication task. This research has been criticized as not being representative of a real world situation since subjects allocated all of their attention to only one task. In the present study, the effect of adding a loading task to a standard noise-communication paradigm was investigated. Subjects performed both a communication task (Modified Rhyme Test; House et al. 1965) and a short term memory task (Sternberg, 1969) in simulated levels of aircraft noise (95, 105 and 115 dB overall sound pressure level (OASPL)). Task loading was varied with Sternberg's task by requiring subjects to memorize one, four, or six alphanumeric characters. Simulated aircraft noise was varied between levels of 95, 105 and 115 dB OASPL using a pink noise source. Results show that the addition of Sternberg's task and little effect on the intelligibility of the communication task while response time for the communication task increased.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2018-01-31

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

  2. Influence of age, circadian and homeostatic processes on inhibitory motor control: a Go/Nogo task study.

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    Patricia Sagaspe

    Full Text Available INTRODUCTION: The contribution of circadian system and sleep pressure influences on executive performance as a function of age has never been studied. The aim of our study was to determine the age-related evolution of inhibitory motor control (i.e., ability to suppress a prepotent motor response and sustained attention under controlled high or low sleep pressure conditions. METHODS: 14 healthy young males (mean age = 23 ± 2.7; 20-29 years and 11 healthy older males (mean age = 68 ± 1.4; 66-70 years were recruited. The volunteers were placed for 40 hours in "constant routine". In the "Sleep Deprivation SD" condition, the volunteer was kept awake for 40 hours to obtain a high sleep pressure condition interacting with the circadian process. In the "NAP" condition, the volunteer adopted a short wake/sleep cycle (150/75 min resulting in a low sleep pressure condition to counteract the homeostatic pressure and investigate the circadian process. Performances were evaluated by a simple reaction time task and a Go/Nogo task repeated every 3H45. RESULTS: In the SD condition, inhibitory motor control (i.e., ability to inhibit an inappropriate response was impaired by extended wakefulness equally in both age groups (P<.01. Sustained attention (i.e. ability to respond accurately to appropriate stimuli on the executive task decreased under sleep deprivation in both groups, and even more in young participants (P<.05. In the NAP condition, age did not influence the time course of inhibitory motor control or sustained attention. In the SD and NAP conditions, older participants had a less fluctuating reaction time performance across time of day than young participants (P<.001. CONCLUSION: Aging could be a protective factor against the effects of extended wakefulness especially on sustained attention failures due to an attenuation of sleep pressure with duration of time awake.

  3. [Measuring impairment of facial affects recognition in schizophrenia. Preliminary study of the facial emotions recognition task (TREF)].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gaudelus, B; Virgile, J; Peyroux, E; Leleu, A; Baudouin, J-Y; Franck, N

    2015-06-01

    The impairment of social cognition, including facial affects recognition, is a well-established trait in schizophrenia, and specific cognitive remediation programs focusing on facial affects recognition have been developed by different teams worldwide. However, even though social cognitive impairments have been confirmed, previous studies have also shown heterogeneity of the results between different subjects. Therefore, assessment of personal abilities should be measured individually before proposing such programs. Most research teams apply tasks based on facial affects recognition by Ekman et al. or Gur et al. However, these tasks are not easily applicable in a clinical exercise. Here, we present the Facial Emotions Recognition Test (TREF), which is designed to identify facial affects recognition impairments in a clinical practice. The test is composed of 54 photos and evaluates abilities in the recognition of six universal emotions (joy, anger, sadness, fear, disgust and contempt). Each of these emotions is represented with colored photos of 4 different models (two men and two women) at nine intensity levels from 20 to 100%. Each photo is presented during 10 seconds; no time limit for responding is applied. The present study compared the scores of the TREF test in a sample of healthy controls (64 subjects) and people with stabilized schizophrenia (45 subjects) according to the DSM IV-TR criteria. We analysed global scores for all emotions, as well as sub scores for each emotion between these two groups, taking into account gender differences. Our results were coherent with previous findings. Applying TREF, we confirmed an impairment in facial affects recognition in schizophrenia by showing significant differences between the two groups in their global results (76.45% for healthy controls versus 61.28% for people with schizophrenia), as well as in sub scores for each emotion except for joy. Scores for women were significantly higher than for men in the population

  4. Two Simon tasks with different sources of conflict: an ERP study of motion- and location-based compatibility effects.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Galashan, Daniela; Wittfoth, Matthias; Fehr, Thorsten; Herrmann, Manfred

    2008-07-01

    Behavioral and electrophysiological correlates of two Simon tasks were examined using comparable stimuli but different task-irrelevant and conflict-inducing stimulus features. Whereas target shape was always the task-relevant stimulus attribute, either target location (location-based task) or motion direction within the target stimuli (motion-based task) was used as a source of conflict. Data from ten healthy participants who performed both tasks are presented. In the motion-based task the incompatible condition showed smaller P300 amplitudes at Pz than the compatible condition and the location-based task yielded a trend towards a reduced P300 amplitude in the incompatible condition. For both tasks, no P300 latency differences between the conditions were found at Pz. The results suggest that the motion-based task elicits behavioral and electrophysiological effects comparable with regular Simon tasks. As all stimuli in the motion-based Simon task were presented centrally the present data strongly argue against the attention-shifting account as an explanatory approach.

  5. Exploring Possible Neural Mechanisms of Intelligence Differences Using Processing Speed and Working Memory Tasks: An fMRI Study

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    Waiter, Gordon D.; Deary, Ian J.; Staff, Roger T.; Murray, Alison D.; Fox, Helen C.; Starr, John M.; Whalley, Lawrence J.

    2009-01-01

    To explore the possible neural foundations of individual differences in intelligence test scores, we examined the associations between Raven's Matrices scores and two tasks that were administered in a functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) setting. The two tasks were an n-back working memory (N = 37) task and inspection time (N = 47). The…

  6. The risk-benefit task of research ethics committees: An evaluation of current approaches and the need to incorporate decision studies methods

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    Bernabe Rosemarie D L C

    2012-04-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Research ethics committees (RECs are tasked to assess the risks and the benefits of a trial. Currently, two procedure-level approaches are predominant, the Net Risk Test and the Component Analysis. Discussion By looking at decision studies, we see that both procedure-level approaches conflate the various risk-benefit tasks, i.e., risk-benefit assessment, risk-benefit evaluation, risk treatment, and decision making. This conflation makes the RECs’ risk-benefit task confusing, if not impossible. We further realize that RECs are not meant to do all the risk-benefit tasks; instead, RECs are meant to evaluate risks and benefits, appraise risk treatment suggestions, and make the final decision. Conclusion As such, research ethics would benefit from looking beyond the procedure-level approaches and allowing disciplines like decision studies to be involved in the discourse on RECs’ risk-benefit task.

  7. The Effect of Different Attentional Focus Instructions during Finger Movement Tasks in Healthy Subjects: An Exploratory Study

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    Giacomo Rossettini

    2017-01-01

    Full Text Available External focus of attention (EFA and internal focus of attention (IFA represent commonly used strategies to instruct subjects during exercise. Several studies showed EFA to be more effective than IFA to improve motor performance and learning. To date the role of these strategies on motor performance during finger movement was less studied. The objective of the study was to investigate motor performance, patient’s preference induced by IFA and EFA, and the focus during control condition. Ten healthy right-handed participants performed a finger movement task in control, EFA, and IFA conditions (counterbalanced. Errors, patient’s preference, and type of attentional focus spontaneously adopted during the control condition were recorded. EFA determined less error (p<0.01 compared to control and IFA. Participants preferred EFA against IFA and control condition. In the control group 10% of subjects adopted a purely EFA, 70% of subjects adopted a purely IFA, and 20% of subjects adopted a mixture of the two foci. Our results confirm that EFA is more effective than IFA and control in finger movement task. Due its clinical relevance, the interaction between attention and finger movement should be further investigated.

  8. Schizotypal traits in healthy women predict prefrontal activation patterns during a verbal fluency task: a near-infrared spectroscopy study.

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    Hori, Hiroaki; Nagamine, Mitsue; Soshi, Takahiro; Okabe, Shigeo; Kim, Yoshiharu; Kunugi, Hiroshi

    2008-01-01

    Previous functional neuroimaging studies have reported that patients with schizophrenia show reduced prefrontal activation during cognitive tasks whereas patients with schizotypal personality disorder (SPD) show preserved or even increased right prefrontal activation, compared to healthy controls; on the other hand, reduced hemispheric laterality is considered to be common to these two disorders. The aim of this study was to examine the possible association between schizotypal traits at a nonclinical level and prefrontal activation patterns during a letter version of the verbal fluency task (VFT). We examined the relationships of schizotypal traits as measured by the Schizotypal Personality Questionnaire (SPQ) in a nonclinical female population with prefrontal activation patterns during the VFT, using near-infrared spectroscopy. Twenty-seven healthy participants were divided into high (n = 14) and low (n = 13) SPQ groups by the median split of the total SPQ score. Compared to the low SPQ group, the high SPQ group showed significantly larger right prefrontal activation during the performance of the VFT, leading to more bilateral activation. Our results suggest that schizotypal traits at a nonclinical level may be related to relative right prefrontal laterality with overall prefrontal activation being preserved, consistent with previous findings obtained by studies of patients with SPD. 2008 S. Karger AG, Basel.

  9. Task errors by emergency physicians are associated with interruptions, multitasking, fatigue and working memory capacity: a prospective, direct observation study.

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    Westbrook, Johanna I; Raban, Magdalena Z; Walter, Scott R; Douglas, Heather

    2018-01-09

    Interruptions and multitasking have been demonstrated in experimental studies to reduce individuals' task performance. These behaviours are frequently used by clinicians in high-workload, dynamic clinical environments, yet their effects have rarely been studied. To assess the relative contributions of interruptions and multitasking by emergency physicians to prescribing errors. 36 emergency physicians were shadowed over 120 hours. All tasks, interruptions and instances of multitasking were recorded. Physicians' working memory capacity (WMC) and preference for multitasking were assessed using the Operation Span Task (OSPAN) and Inventory of Polychronic Values. Following observation, physicians were asked about their sleep in the previous 24 hours. Prescribing errors were used as a measure of task performance. We performed multivariate analysis of prescribing error rates to determine associations with interruptions and multitasking, also considering physician seniority, age, psychometric measures, workload and sleep. Physicians experienced 7.9 interruptions/hour. 28 clinicians were observed prescribing 239 medication orders which contained 208 prescribing errors. While prescribing, clinicians were interrupted 9.4 times/hour. Error rates increased significantly if physicians were interrupted (rate ratio (RR) 2.82; 95% CI 1.23 to 6.49) or multitasked (RR 1.86; 95% CI 1.35 to 2.56) while prescribing. Having below-average sleep showed a >15-fold increase in clinical error rate (RR 16.44; 95% CI 4.84 to 55.81). WMC was protective against errors; for every 10-point increase on the 75-point OSPAN, a 19% decrease in prescribing errors was observed. There was no effect of polychronicity, workload, physician gender or above-average sleep on error rates. Interruptions, multitasking and poor sleep were associated with significantly increased rates of prescribing errors among emergency physicians. WMC mitigated the negative influence of these factors to an extent. These

  10. Reduced prefrontal activation during verbal fluency task in chronic insomnia disorder: a multichannel near-infrared spectroscopy study

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    Sun JJ

    2017-06-01

    Full Text Available Jing-Jing Sun,1,2 Xiao-Min Liu,2 Chen-Yu Shen,2 Xiao-Qian Zhang,1,2 Gao-Xiang Sun,2 Kun Feng,2 Bo Xu,2 Xia-Jin Ren,1,2 Xiang-Yun Ma,1,2 Po-Zi Liu2 1Medical Center, Tsinghua University, Beijing, China, 2Department of Psychiatry, YuQuan Hospital, Tsinghua University, Beijing, China Purpose: Daytime complaints such as memory and attention deficits and failure to accomplish daily tasks are common in insomnia patients. However, objective psychological tests to detect cognitive impairment are equivocal. Neural function associated with cognitive performance may explain the discrepancy. The aim of this study was to investigate the hemodynamic response patterns of patients with chronic insomnia disorder (CID using the noninvasive and low-cost functional neuroimaging technique of multichannel near-infrared spectroscopy (NIRS in order to identify changes of neural function associated with cognitive performance.Patients and methods: Twenty-four CID patients and twenty-five healthy controls matched for age, right-hand dominance, educational level, and gender were examined during verbal fluency tasks (VFT using NIRS. A covariance analysis was conducted to analyze differences of oxygenated hemoglobin (oxy-Hb changes in prefrontal cortex (PFC between the two groups and reduce the influence of the severity of depression. Pearson correlation coeffcients were calculated to examine the relationship between the oxy-Hb changes, with the severity of insomnia and depressive symptoms assessed by the Pittsburgh Sleep Quality Index (PSQI and the Hamilton Rating Scale for Depression (HAMD.Results: The number of words generated during the VFT in CID groups showed no statistical differences with healthy controls. CID patients showed hypoactivation in the PFC during the cognitive task. In addition, we found that the function of left orbitofrontal cortex (OFC during the VFT was significantly negatively correlated with the PSQI scores and the function of right dorsolateral PFC

  11. A Preliminary Study of Functional Brain Activation among Marijuana Users during Performance of a Virtual Water Maze Task

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    Jennifer Tropp Sneider

    2013-01-01

    Full Text Available Numerous studies have reported neurocognitive impairments associated with chronic marijuana use. Given that the hippocampus contains a high density of cannabinoid receptors, hippocampal-mediated cognitive functions, including visuospatial memory, may have increased vulnerability to chronic marijuana use. Thus, the current study examined brain activation during the performance of a virtual analogue of the classic Morris water maze task in 10 chronic marijuana (MJ users compared to 18 nonusing (NU comparison subjects. Imaging data were acquired using blood oxygen level-dependent (BOLD functional MRI at 3.0 Tesla during retrieval (hidden platform and motor control (visible platform conditions. While task performance on learning trials was similar between groups, MJ users demonstrated a deficit in memory retrieval. For BOLD fMRI data, NU subjects exhibited greater activation in the right parahippocampal gyrus and cingulate gyrus compared to the MJ group for the Retrieval-Motor Control contrast (NU > MJ. These findings suggest that hypoactivation in MJ users may be due to differences in the efficient utilization of neuronal resources during the retrieval of memory. Given the paucity of data on visuospatial memory function in MJ users, these findings may help elucidate the neurobiological effects of marijuana on brain activation during memory retrieval.

  12. Semantic encoding and retrieval in the left inferior prefrontal cortex: a functional MRI study of task difficulty and process specificity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Demb, J B; Desmond, J E; Wagner, A D; Vaidya, C J; Glover, G H; Gabrieli, J D

    1995-09-01

    Prefrontal cortical function was examined during semantic encoding and repetition priming using functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI), a noninvasive technique for localizing regional changes in blood oxygenation, a correlate of neural activity. Words studied in a semantic (deep) encoding condition were better remembered than words studied in both easier and more difficult nonsemantic (shallow) encoding conditions, with difficulty indexed by response time. The left inferior prefrontal cortex (LIPC) (Brodmann's areas 45, 46, 47) showed increased activation during semantic encoding relative to nonsemantic encoding regardless of the relative difficulty of the nonsemantic encoding task. Therefore, LIPC activation appears to be related to semantic encoding and not task difficulty. Semantic encoding decisions are performed faster the second time words are presented. This represents semantic repetition priming, a facilitation in semantic processing for previously encoded words that is not dependent on intentional recollection. The same LIPC area activated during semantic encoding showed decreased activation during repeated semantic encoding relative to initial semantic encoding of the same words. This decrease in activation during repeated encoding was process specific; it occurred when words were semantically reprocessed but not when words were nonsemantically reprocessed. The results were apparent in both individual and averaged functional maps. These findings suggest that the LIPC is part of a semantic executive system that contributes to the on-line retrieval of semantic information.

  13. Dysfunctional frontal lobe activity during inhibitory tasks in individuals with childhood trauma: An event-related potential study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kim, Sungkean; Kim, Ji Sun; Jin, Min Jin; Im, Chang-Hwan; Lee, Seung-Hwan

    2018-01-01

    Individuals who experience childhood trauma are vulnerable to various psychological and behavioral problems throughout their lifetime. This study aimed to investigate whether individuals with childhood trauma show altered frontal lobe activity during response inhibition tasks. In total, 157 healthy individuals were recruited and instructed to perform a Go/Nogo task during electroencephalography recording. Source activities of N2 and P3 of Nogo event-related potentials (ERP) were analyzed. The Childhood Trauma Questionnaire (CTQ) and Barratt Impulsivity Scale (BIS) were applied. Individuals were divided into three groups based on their total CTQ score: low CTQ, middle CTQ, and high CTQ groups. The high CTQ group exhibited significantly higher BIS scores than the low CTQ group. P3 amplitudes of the differences between Nogo and Go ERP waves exhibited higher mean values in the low CTQ than the high CTQ group, with trending effects. In Nogo-P3, the source activities of the right anterior cingulate cortex, bilateral medial frontal cortex (MFC), bilateral superior frontal gyrus (SFG), and right precentral gyrus were significantly lower in the high CTQ than the low CTQ group. Motor impulsivity showed a significant negative correlation with activities of the bilateral MFC and SFG in Nogo-P3 conditions. Our study revealed that individuals with childhood trauma have inhibitory failure and frontal lobe dysfunction in regions related to Nogo-P3.

  14. Facilitating Group Analysis of Two Case Studies Utilising Peer Tutoring: Comparison of Tasks and Outcomes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fong, Lin Siew

    2016-01-01

    Peer-tutoring sessions of two groups of advanced diploma in financial accounting students with mixed proficiency were analysed thoroughly in this study. Numerous studies in peer tutoring have produced favourable results to both tutors and tutees due to the scaffolding process which promotes effective learning. However, there is a lack of studies…

  15. CBP [TASK 12] experimental study of the concrete salstone two-layer system

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Samson, Eric [SIMCO Technologies, Inc., Ville de Québec, QC (Canada); Protiere, Yannick [SIMCO Technologies, Inc., Ville de Québec, QC (Canada)

    2016-11-01

    This report presents the results of a study which intended to study the behavior of concrete samples placed in contact with a wasteform mixture bearing high level of sulfate in its pore solution. A setup was prepared which consisted in a wasteform poured on top of vault concrete mixes (identified as Vault 1/4 and Vault 2 mixes) cured for approximately 6 months.

  16. Task Dependency Effects of Collaboration in Learners' Corpus Consultation: An Exploratory Case Study

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cho, Hyeyoung

    2016-01-01

    Collaborative learning has attracted attention as pedagogic mediation to assist learners' corpus consultation, but some studies have pointed to negative aspects of collaboration. Based on the two sides of collaboration in language learning, this study presents a qualitative investigation of different effects of collaboration depending on task…

  17. GLAMUR case-study report: The comparison of three Dutch pork cases (Tasks 3.5)

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Oostindië, H.A.; Horlings, L.G.; Broekhuizen, van R.E.; Hees, E.

    2015-01-01

    This report presents the case study results of local-global pork chain performances in The Netherlands. As part of Work Package 3, this case study was carried out in cooperation with our Italian GLAMUR partner. The Dutch pork production sector came up after World War 2 and developed into a highly

  18. Life sciences payload definition and integration study, task C and D. Volume 1: Management summary

    Science.gov (United States)

    1973-01-01

    The findings of a study to define the required payloads for conducting life science experiments in space are presented. The primary objectives of the study are: (1) identify research functions to be performed aboard life sciences spacecraft laboratories and necessary equipment, (2) develop conceptual designs of potential payloads, (3) integrate selected laboratory designs with space shuttle configurations, and (4) establish cost analysis of preliminary program planning.

  19. Differences in visuo-motor control in skilled vs. novice martial arts athletes during sustained and transient attention tasks: a motor-related cortical potential study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sanchez-Lopez, Javier; Fernandez, Thalia; Silva-Pereyra, Juan; Martinez Mesa, Juan A; Di Russo, Francesco

    2014-01-01

    Cognitive and motor processes are essential for optimal athletic performance. Individuals trained in different skills and sports may have specialized cognitive abilities and motor strategies related to the characteristics of the activity and the effects of training and expertise. Most studies have investigated differences in motor-related cortical potential (MRCP) during self-paced tasks in athletes but not in stimulus-related tasks. The aim of the present study was to identify the differences in performance and MRCP between skilled and novice martial arts athletes during two different types of tasks: a sustained attention task and a transient attention task. Behavioral and electrophysiological data from twenty-two martial arts athletes were obtained while they performed a continuous performance task (CPT) to measure sustained attention and a cued continuous performance task (c-CPT) to measure transient attention. MRCP components were analyzed and compared between groups. Electrophysiological data in the CPT task indicated larger prefrontal positive activity and greater posterior negativity distribution prior to a motor response in the skilled athletes, while novices showed a significantly larger response-related P3 after a motor response in centro-parietal areas. A different effect occurred in the c-CPT task in which the novice athletes showed strong prefrontal positive activity before a motor response and a large response-related P3, while in skilled athletes, the prefrontal activity was absent. We propose that during the CPT, skilled athletes were able to allocate two different but related processes simultaneously according to CPT demand, which requires controlled attention and controlled motor responses. On the other hand, in the c-CPT, skilled athletes showed better cue facilitation, which permitted a major economy of resources and "automatic" or less controlled responses to relevant stimuli. In conclusion, the present data suggest that motor expertise

  20. Comparison study of human brain response to acupuncture stimulation vs finger tapping task by using real time fMRI

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Wang Wei; Zhu Fang; Qi Jianpin; Xia Yeling; Xia Liming; Wang Chengyuan

    2002-01-01

    Objective: To characterize the central nervous system reaction on acupuncture stimulations of ZUSANLI (S36) and YANGLINGQUAN (G34) by using real time imaging processing (RTIP) functional magnetic resonance imaging. Methods: Functional MR imaging was performed in 17 healthy volunteers with 2 paradigms: acupuncture at acu-points of ZUSANLI (S36 and YANGLINGQUAN (G34) (on the right side) and control stimulations (right finger tapping). Correlation coefficient (CC) of ROI was detected including bilateral sensorimotor area (SMC), pre-motor cortex (PMC), and supplementary motor area (SMA). Only the ROI in which CC ≥ 0.6 and range exceeded 4 pixels was counted as an activated area. Fisher's exact test was performed to analyze the data in SAS software package. Results: In tapping finger task, 16 subjects obtained functional MR images satisfactorily except 1 subjects, and 8 of SMC R , 8 of PMC R , 9 of SMA, 16 of SMC L , and 9 of PMC L were activated. In acupuncture task, 3 subjects were eliminated for gross motion artifacts, there were 6 of SMC R , 10 of PMC R , 8 of SMA, 11 of SMC L , and 10 of PMC L were activated in the rest 14 subjects. Fisher's exact test (2-Tail) (P> 0.05) showed that there was no significant difference in ROI activated by two kinds of stimulus. Conclusion: Real time fMRI was very useful in exploring acupuncture mechanisms. However, its value in practice still requires further study and synthetic appraise integrating clinical acupuncture effect

  1. Tolerance of negative emotion moderates the amplification of mental contamination following an evoking task: A randomized experimental study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fergus, Thomas A

    2018-06-01

    Contamination is a near universal feeling, with mental contamination representing a contamination feeling in the absence of direct physical contact with a source. Extant research indicates that tolerance of negative emotion is important for understanding emotional reactions to images, thoughts, and memories, all of which are common sources of mental contamination. Extending research linking distress tolerance to mental contamination, this study examined if individual differences in the tolerance of negative emotion moderates the amplification of mental contamination following an evoking task. Unselected participants completed a self-report measure of tolerance of negative emotion during an online session. They later attended an in-person session and were randomized to an experimental scenario group: betrayal (n = 49) or control (n = 49). Participants imagined themselves in a scenario, with the betrayal scenario designed to evoke mental contamination. Mental contamination was assessed by self-report before and after the scenario. The betrayal, but not control, scenario caused an increase in mental contamination. Tolerance for negative emotion moderated the effect of group on mental contamination. Group differences in mental contamination evidenced at low, but not high, distress tolerance. A novel experimental manipulation and an unselected sample were used. Future research could assess tolerance of negative emotion using a behavioral task. These results indicate that tolerance of negative emotion may be important for understanding when individuals experience mental contamination. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  2. Waste handling building design tradeoff studies: Salt Repository Project closeout task report

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    1988-01-01

    The purpose of this closeout study is to capture work done by SRPO contractors and the relevant knowledge and recommendations of Battelle staff regarding design of WHB receiving, storage, hot cell areas, and process logistics. The information and recommendations are based on the latest available studies and prior experience of Battelle personnel at WIPP, INEL, and Hanford facilities. The information is expected to be directly applicable to WHB design work that will be done at Nevada, MRS, or other repository facilities. A perspective showing the various WHB areas and general arrangement is given. This study addresses alternatives associated with the receiving area, the fuel storage areas, the cell arrangements, the failed fuel accommodations, and the process logistics. 16 refs., 2 figs., 5 tabs

  3. Impact of IPMOE on nursing tasks in the medical ward: A time-motion study

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ming Leung

    2018-01-01

    Conclusion: Our study had shown the time motion observation could be applied to measure the impact of the IPMOE in a busy clinical setting. Through classification of activities, validation, objective measurement and longitudinal evaluation, the method could be applied in various systems as well as different clinical settings in measure efficiency.

  4. The Effect of Retrieval on Post-Task Enjoyment of Studying

    Science.gov (United States)

    Clark, Daniel A.; Svinicki, Marilla

    2015-01-01

    Although active retrieval is an extremely effective study method, students continue to use less effective methods (Karpicke, "Journal of Experimental Psychology General," 138(4), 469-486, 2009; Hartwig and Dunlosky, "Psychonomic Bulletin & Review," 19(1), 126-134, 2012). There are likely many underlying reasons for using…

  5. Aero-Propulsion Technology (APT) Task V Low Noise ADP Engine Definition Study

    Science.gov (United States)

    Holcombe, V.

    2003-01-01

    A study was conducted to identify and evaluate noise reduction technologies for advanced ducted prop propulsion systems that would allow increased capacity operation and result in an economically competitive commercial transport. The study investigated the aero/acoustic/structural advancements in fan and nacelle technology required to match or exceed the fuel burned and economic benefits of a constrained diameter large Advanced Ducted Propeller (ADP) compared to an unconstrained ADP propulsion system with a noise goal of 5 to 10 EPNDB reduction relative to FAR 36 Stage 3 at each of the three measuring stations namely, takeoff (cutback), approach and sideline. A second generation ADP was selected to operate within the maximum nacelle diameter constrain of 160 deg to allow installation under the wing. The impact of fan and nacelle technologies of the second generation ADP on fuel burn and direct operating costs for a typical 3000 nm mission was evaluated through use of a large, twin engine commercial airplane simulation model. The major emphasis of this study focused on fan blade aero/acoustic and structural technology evaluations and advanced nacelle designs. Results of this study have identified the testing required to verify the interactive performance of these components, along with noise characteristics, by wind tunnel testing utilizing and advanced interaction rig.

  6. Analyzing Task-Based User Study Data to Determine Colormap Efficiency

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Ashton, Zoe Charon Maria [Los Alamos National Lab. (LANL), Los Alamos, NM (United States); Wendelberger, Joanne Roth [Los Alamos National Lab. (LANL), Los Alamos, NM (United States); Ticknor, Lawrence O. [Los Alamos National Lab. (LANL), Los Alamos, NM (United States); Turton, Terece [Los Alamos National Lab. (LANL), Los Alamos, NM (United States); Samsel, Francesca [Los Alamos National Lab. (LANL), Los Alamos, NM (United States)

    2015-07-23

    Domain scientists use colormaps to visualize their data. These are useful for identifying areas of interest including Eddy Identification and Characterizing Currents. New colormaps have been designed by visual artist Francesca Samsel. User studies have been implemented to determine whether or not these colormaps are an improvement.

  7. Counterfactually Mediated Emotions: A Developmental Study of Regret and Relief in a Probabilistic Gambling Task

    Science.gov (United States)

    Habib, M.; Cassotti, M.; Borst, G.; Simon, G.; Pineau, A.; Houde, O.; Moutier, S.

    2012-01-01

    Regret and relief are related to counterfactual thinking and rely on comparison processes between what has been and what might have been. In this article, we study the development of regret and relief from late childhood to adulthood (11.2-20.2 years), and we examine how these two emotions affect individuals' willingness to retrospectively…

  8. The Role of Awareness for Complex Planning Task Performance: A Microgaming Study

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lukosch, Heide; Groen, Daan; Kurapati, Shalini; Klemke, Roland; Verbraeck, Alexander

    2016-01-01

    This study introduces the concept of microgames to support situated learning in order to foster situational awareness (SA) of planners in seaport container terminals. In today's complex working environments, it is often difficult to develop the required level of understanding of a given situation, described as situational awareness. A container…

  9. Reconsidering Off-Task: A Comparative Study of PDA-Mediated Activities in Four Classrooms

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mifsud, L.; Morch, A. I.

    2010-01-01

    Mobile technology is ubiquitous and diverse and permeates many aspects of daily life at home, during leisure activities, and in public spaces. The study presented here is of two sixth grade classes in Michigan, USA and two seventh grade classes in Norway. The students and the teachers in these four classrooms were equipped with mobile technologies…

  10. Studying the Effectiveness of Multi-User Immersive Environments for Collaborative Evaluation Tasks

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lorenzo, Carlos-Miguel; Sicilia, Miguel Angel; Sanchez, Salvador

    2012-01-01

    Massively Multiuser On-line Learning (MMOL) Platforms, often called "virtual learning worlds", constitute a still unexplored context for communication-enhanced learning, where synchronous communication skills in an explicit social setting enhance the potential of effective collaboration. In this paper, we report on an experimental study of…

  11. Writing processes, text quality, and task effects; empirical studies in first and second language writing

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    van Weijen, D.|info:eu-repo/dai/nl/304834068

    2009-01-01

    This study was carried out in order to advance our understanding of the writing process by linking process and product characteristics to each other. The underlying question was: how does the way in which writers use different cognitive activities, such as planning, generating ideas, and

  12. Analyzing task-based user study data to determine colormap efficiency

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Ashton, Zoe Charon Maria [Los Alamos National Lab. (LANL), Los Alamos, NM (United States); Wendelberger, Joanne Roth [Los Alamos National Lab. (LANL), Los Alamos, NM (United States); Ticknor, Lawrence O. [Los Alamos National Lab. (LANL), Los Alamos, NM (United States); Turton, Terece [Los Alamos National Lab. (LANL), Los Alamos, NM (United States); Samsel, Francesca [Los Alamos National Lab. (LANL), Los Alamos, NM (United States)

    2015-07-23

    Domain scientists need colormaps to visualize their data and are especially useful for identifying areas of interest, like in ocean data to identify eddies or characterize currents. However, traditional Rainbow colormap performs poorly for understanding details, because of the small perceptual range. In order to assist domain scientists in recognizing and identifying important details in their data, different colormaps need to be applied to allow higher perceptual definition. Visual artist Francesca Samsel used her understanding of color theory to create new colormaps to improve perception. While domain scientists find the new colormaps to be useful, we implemented a rigorous and quantitative study to determine whether or not the new colormaps have perceptually more colors. Color count data from one of these studies will be analyzed in depth in order to determine whether or not the new colormaps have more perceivable colors and what affects the number of perceivable colors.

  13. Advanced studies of biological indirect liquefaction of coal: Topical report on Task 1: Culture identification

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    None

    1989-01-01

    Culture identification and characterization studies carried out at the University of Arkansas and under contract to the University of Oklahoma, Department of Botany and Microbiology, have been essentially completed. The studies indicate that the organism is indeed a new clostridial strain, to be named Clostridium ljungdahlii, strain PETC, in honor of Dr. Lars G. Ljungdahl for his work on clostridia and acetogens. C. ljungdahlii is different from other clostridial strains and similar geni in its operating conditions and choice of substrates as sole carbon and energy sources. C. ljungdahlii, strain PETC, produces ethanol as a product only at low pH levels, with acetate the primary product at higher pH levels. 46 refs., 5 figs., 6 tabs.

  14. Neural correlates of emotional intelligence in a visual emotional oddball task: an ERP study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Raz, Sivan; Dan, Orrie; Zysberg, Leehu

    2014-11-01

    The present study was aimed at identifying potential behavioral and neural correlates of Emotional Intelligence (EI) by using scalp-recorded Event-Related Potentials (ERPs). EI levels were defined according to both self-report questionnaire and a performance-based ability test. We identified ERP correlates of emotional processing by using a visual-emotional oddball paradigm, in which subjects were confronted with one frequent standard stimulus (a neutral face) and two deviant stimuli (a happy and an angry face). The effects of these faces were then compared across groups with low and high EI levels. The ERP results indicate that participants with high EI exhibited significantly greater mean amplitudes of the P1, P2, N2, and P3 ERP components in response to emotional and neutral faces, at frontal, posterior-parietal and occipital scalp locations. P1, P2 and N2 are considered indexes of attention-related processes and have been associated with early attention to emotional stimuli. The later P3 component has been thought to reflect more elaborative, top-down, emotional information processing including emotional evaluation and memory encoding and formation. These results may suggest greater recruitment of resources to process all emotional and non-emotional faces at early and late processing stages among individuals with higher EI. The present study underscores the usefulness of ERP methodology as a sensitive measure for the study of emotional stimuli processing in the research field of EI. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  15. KNOW-BLADE, task-3.2 report, tip shape study

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Soerensen, N.N.; Johansen, J.; Conway, S.; Voutsinas, S.; Hansen, M.O.L.; Stuermer, A.

    2005-01-01

    For modern rotor blades with their very large aspect ratio, the blade tip is a very limited part of the overall rotor, and as such of limited importance for the overall aerodynamics of the rotor. Even though they may not be very important for the overall power production, the tip noise can be very important for the acoustics of the rotor [15], and the blade tips can as well be important for the aerodynamic damping properties of the rotor blades [13]. Unfortunately, not many options exists for predicting the aerodynamic behavior of blade tips using computational methods. Experimentally it is dicult to perform detailed measurements in the form of pressure and velocity measurements in natural wind conditions on modern large scale turbines due to the inherent unsteadiness in the natural wind. The present study describes the application of four different Navier-Stokes solvers to tip shape studies, and shows that these codes are well suited to study the flow around different tip shape geometries, and can predict the pressure distributions at the blade tip quite accurately. (au)

  16. Managing competing demands through task-switching and multitasking: a multi-setting observational study of 200 clinicians over 1000 hours.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Walter, Scott R; Li, Ling; Dunsmuir, William T M; Westbrook, Johanna I

    2014-03-01

    To provide a detailed characterisation of clinicians' work management strategies. 1002.3 h of observational data were derived from three previous studies conducted in a teaching hospital in Sydney, Australia, among emergency department (ED) doctors (n=40), ward doctors (n=57) and ward nurses (n=104). The rates of task-switching (pausing a task to handle an incoming task) and multitasking (adding a task in parallel to an existing task) were compared in each group. Random intercepts logistic regression was used to determine factors significantly associated with clinicians' use of task-switching over multitasking and to quantify variation between individual clinicians. Task-switching rates were higher among ED doctors (6.0 per hour) than ward staff (2.2 and 1.8 per hour for doctors and nurses, respectively) and vice versa for multitasking rates (9.2 vs 17.3 and 14.1 per hour). Clinicians' strategy use was significantly related to the nature and complexity of work and to the person they were working with. In some settings, time of day, day of the week or previous chosen strategy affected a clinician's strategy. Independent of these factors, there was significant variation between individual clinicians in their use of strategies in a given situation (ED doctors p=0.04, ward staff p=0.03). Despite differences in factors associated with work management strategy use among ED doctors, ward doctors and ward nurses, clinicians in all settings appeared to prioritise certain types of tasks over others. Documentation was generally given low priority in all groups, while the arrival of direct care tasks tended to be treated with high priority. These findings suggest that considerations of safety may be implicit in task-switching and multitasking decisions. Although these strategies have been cast in a negative light, future research should consider their role in optimising competing quality and efficiency demands.

  17. Dual-task as a predictor of falls in older people with mild cognitive impairment and mild Alzheimer's disease: a prospective cohort study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gonçalves, Jessica; Ansai, Juliana Hotta; Masse, Fernando Arturo Arriagada; Vale, Francisco Assis Carvalho; Takahashi, Anielle Cristhine de Medeiros; Andrade, Larissa Pires de

    2018-04-04

    A dual-task tool with a challenging and daily secondary task, which involves executive functions, could facilitate the screening for risk of falls in older people with mild cognitive impairment or mild Alzheimer's disease. To verify if a motor-cognitive dual-task test could predict falls in older people with mild cognitive impairment or mild Alzheimer's disease, and to establish cutoff scores for the tool for both groups. A prospective study was conducted with community-dwelling older adults, including 40 with mild cognitive impairment and 38 with mild Alzheimer's disease. The dual-task test consisted of the Timed up and Go Test associated with a motor-cognitive task using a phone to call. Falls were recorded during six months by calendar and monthly telephone calls and the participants were categorized as fallers or non-fallers. In the Mild cognitive impairment Group, fallers presented higher values in time (35.2s), number of steps (33.7 steps) and motor task cost (116%) on dual-task compared to non-fallers. Time, number of steps and motor task cost were significantly associated with falls in people with mild cognitive impairment. Multivariate analysis identified higher number of steps spent on the test to be independently associated with falls. A time greater than 23.88s (sensitivity=80%; specificity=61%) and a number of steps over 29.50 (sensitivity=65%; specificity=83%) indicated prediction of risk of falls in the Mild cognitive impairment Group. Among people with Alzheimer's disease, no differences in dual-task between fallers and non-fallers were found and no variable of the tool was able to predict falls. The dual-task predicts falls only in older people with mild cognitive impairment. Copyright © 2018 Associação Brasileira de Pesquisa e Pós-Graduação em Fisioterapia. Publicado por Elsevier Editora Ltda. All rights reserved.

  18. 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.

  19. Relationship between Usefulness Assessments and Perceptions of Work Task Complexity and Search Topic Specificity: An Exploratory Study

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Ingwersen, Peter; Wang, Peiling

    2012-01-01

    This research investigates the relations between the usefulness assessments of retrieved documents and the perceptions of task complexity and search topic specificity. Twenty-three academic researchers submitted 65 real task-based information search topics. These task topics were searched...... in an integrated document collection consisting of full text research articles in PDFs, abstracts, and bibliographic records (the iSearch Test Collection in Physics). The search results were provided to the researchers who, as task performers, made assessments of usefulness using a four-point sale (highly, fairly......, marginally, or not useful). In addition, they also assessed the perceived task complexity (highly, fairly, and routine/low) and the perceived specificity of the search topic (highly, fairly, and generic/low). It is found that highly specific topics associate with all degrees of task complexity, whereas...

  20. A Preliminary fMRI Study of a Novel Self-Paced Written Fluency Task: Observation of Left-Hemispheric Activation, and Increased Frontal Activation in Late vs. Early Task Phases

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Laleh eGolestanirad

    2015-03-01

    Full Text Available Neuropsychological tests of verbal fluency are very widely used to characterize impaired cognitive function. For clinical neuroscience studies and potential medical applications, measuring the brain activity that underlies such tests with functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI is of significant interest - but a challenging proposition because overt speech can cause signal artifacts, which tend to worsen as the duration of speech tasks becomes longer. In a novel approach, we present the group brain activity of 12 subjects who performed a self-paced written version of phonemic fluency using fMRI-compatible tablet technology that recorded responses and provided task-related feedback on a projection screen display, over long-duration task blocks (60 s. As predicted, we observed robust activation in the left anterior inferior and medial frontal gyri, consisting with previously reported results of verbal fluency tasks which established the role of these areas in strategic word retrieval. In addition, the number of words produced in the late phase (last 30 s of written phonemic fluency was significantly less (p < 0.05 than the number produced in the early phase (first 30 s. Activation during the late phase vs. the early phase was also assessed from the first 20 s and last 20 s of task performance, which eliminated the possibility that the sluggish hemodynamic response from the early phase would affect the activation estimates of the late phase. The last 20 s produced greater activation maps covering extended areas in bilateral precuneus, cuneus, middle temporal gyrus, insula, middle frontal gyrus and cingulate gyrus. Among them, greater activation was observed in the bilateral middle frontal gyrus (Brodmann area BA 9 and cingulate gyrus (BA 24, 32 likely as part of the initiation, maintenance, and shifting of attentional resources.

  1. MRS [monitored retrievable storage] Systems Study Task 1 report: Waste management system reliability analysis

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Clark, L.L.; Myers, R.S.

    1989-04-01

    This is one of nine studies undertaken by contractors to the US Department of Energy (DOE), Office of Civilian Radioactive Waste Management (OCRWM), to provide a technical basis for re-evaluating the role of a monitored retrievable storage (MRS) facility. The study evaluates the relative reliabilities of systems with and without an MRS facility using current facility design bases. The principal finding of this report is that the MRS system has several operational advantages that enhance system reliability. These are: (1) the MRS system is likely to encounter fewer technical issues, (2) the MRS would assure adequate system surface storage capacity to accommodate repository construction and startup delays of up to five years or longer if the Nuclear Waste Policy Amendments Act (NWPAA) were amended, (3) the system with an MRS has two federal acceptance facilities with parallel transportation routing and surface storage capacity, and (4) the MRS system would allow continued waste acceptance for up to a year after a major disruption of emplacement operations at the repository

  2. A semi-immersive virtual reality incremental swing balance task activates prefrontal cortex: a functional near-infrared spectroscopy study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Basso Moro, Sara; Bisconti, Silvia; Muthalib, Makii; Spezialetti, Matteo; Cutini, Simone; Ferrari, Marco; Placidi, Giuseppe; Quaresima, Valentina

    2014-01-15

    Previous functional near-infrared spectroscopy (fNIRS) studies indicated that the prefrontal cortex (PFC) is involved in the maintenance of the postural balance after external perturbations. So far, no studies have been conducted to investigate the PFC hemodynamic response to virtual reality (VR) tasks that could be adopted in the field of functional neurorehabilitation. The aim of this fNIRS study was to assess PFC oxygenation response during an incremental and a control swing balance task (ISBT and CSBT, respectively) in a semi-immersive VR environment driven by a depth-sensing camera. It was hypothesized that: i) the PFC would be bilaterally activated in response to the increase of the ISBT difficulty, as this cortical region is involved in the allocation of attentional resources to maintain postural control; and ii) the PFC activation would be greater in the right than in the left hemisphere considering its dominance for visual control of body balance. To verify these hypotheses, 16 healthy male subjects were requested to stand barefoot while watching a 3 dimensional virtual representation of themselves projected onto a screen. They were asked to maintain their equilibrium on a virtual blue swing board susceptible to external destabilizing perturbations (i.e., randomizing the forward-backward direction of the impressed pulse force) during a 3-min ISBT (performed at four levels of difficulty) or during a 3-min CSBT (performed constantly at the lowest level of difficulty of the ISBT). The center of mass (COM), at each frame, was calculated and projected on the floor. When the subjects were unable to maintain the COM over the board, this became red (error). After each error, the time required to bring back the COM on the board was calculated (returning time). An eight-channel continuous wave fNIRS system was employed for measuring oxygenation changes (oxygenated-hemoglobin, O2Hb; deoxygenated-hemoglobin, HHb) related to the PFC activation (Brodmann Areas 10, 11

  3. A Case-Based Study with Radiologists Performing Diagnosis Tasks in Virtual Reality.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Venson, José Eduardo; Albiero Berni, Jean Carlo; Edmilson da Silva Maia, Carlos; Marques da Silva, Ana Maria; Cordeiro d'Ornellas, Marcos; Maciel, Anderson

    2017-01-01

    In radiology diagnosis, medical images are most often visualized slice by slice. At the same time, the visualization based on 3D volumetric rendering of the data is considered useful and has increased its field of application. In this work, we present a case-based study with 16 medical specialists to assess the diagnostic effectiveness of a Virtual Reality interface in fracture identification over 3D volumetric reconstructions. We developed a VR volume viewer compatible with both the Oculus Rift and handheld-based head mounted displays (HMDs). We then performed user experiments to validate the approach in a diagnosis environment. In addition, we assessed the subjects' perception of the 3D reconstruction quality, ease of interaction and ergonomics, and also the users opinion on how VR applications can be useful in healthcare. Among other results, we have found a high level of effectiveness of the VR interface in identifying superficial fractures on head CTs.

  4. Conceptual design study of potential early commercial MHD powerplant. Report of task 2 results

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hals, F. A.

    1981-03-01

    The conceptual design of one of the potential early commercial MHD power plants was studied. The plant employs oxygen enrichment of the combustion air and preheating of this oxygen enriched air to an intermediate temperature of 1200 F attainable with a tubular type recuperative heat exchanger. Conceptual designs of plant componets and equipment with performance, operational characteristics, and costs are reported. Plant economics and overall performance including full and part load operation are reviewed. The projected performance and estimated cost of this early MHD plant are compared to conventional power plants, although it does not offer the same high efficiency and low costs as the mature MHD power plant. Environmental aspects and the methods incorporated in plant design for emission control of sulfur and nitrogen are reviewed.

  5. Dealing with suicidal patients – a challenging task: a qualitative study of young physicians' experiences

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Talseth Anne-Grethe

    2006-08-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Suicide is a major public health problem and treating suicidal patients represents one of the most challenging and complex clinical situations for young physicians. Education of physicians is considered an important strategy in suicide prevention. Young physicians often meet suicidal patients early in their career. Limited information is available about how newly educated physicians experience treating suicidal patients. The aim of the study was to shed light on the meaning of newly educated physicians' lived experiences in treating patients at risk of committing suicide. Methods Thirteen newly educated physicians narrated their experiences with suicidal patients. The interview text was transcribed and interpreted using a phenomenological-hermeneutical method inspired by Ricoeur's philosophy. Results Three main themes and ten themes were noted: Striving for relatedness: relating with the patient; not being able to relate with the patient; Intervening competently: having adequate professional knowledge; performing professionally; having professional values; evaluating one's own competence; and Being emotionally involved: accepting one's own vulnerability; feeling morally indignant; feeling powerless and accepting one's own fallibility. The recently educated physicians clearly described the variety of emotional and ethical dilemmas that arose in meeting suicidal patients and the professional challenge facing this clinical situation. The findings were interpreted in the perspective of communication, clinical decision-making and attention to the professional's emotional reactions. Conclusion An examination of the experiences of young physicians treating suicidal patients reveals three main themes that were a professional challenge for them: Striving for relatedness, Intervening competently and Being emotionally involved. Support for young practitioners that are treating these patients is likely important both to facilitate

  6. Does Core Task Matter for Decision-Making? A Comparative Case Study on Whether Differences in Job Characteristics Affect Discretionary Street-Level Decision-Making

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Jensen, Didde Cramer

    2017-01-01

    This article sets out to test the hypothesis that differences in fundamental job characteristics (service vs. regulation) affect discretionary street-level decision-making. The hypothesis was tested by examining whether systematic variation could be found in the moral assessments on which street......-level bureaucrats performing different types of core tasks base their decisions. The issue was addressed in a comparative case study comprising three institutions, which differ systematically as far as variables of tasks are concerned. Findings showed that differences in core tasks do affect discretionary decision...

  7. Modality Switching in a Property Verification Task: An ERP Study of What Happens When Candles Flicker after High Heels Click.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Collins, Jennifer; Pecher, Diane; Zeelenberg, René; Coulson, Seana

    2011-01-01

    The perceptual modalities associated with property words, such as flicker or click, have previously been demonstrated to affect subsequent property verification judgments (Pecher et al., 2003). Known as the conceptual modality switch effect, this finding supports the claim that brain systems for perception and action help subserve the representation of concepts. The present study addressed the cognitive and neural substrate of this effect by recording event-related potentials (ERPs) as participants performed a property verification task with visual or auditory properties in key trials. We found that for visual property verifications, modality switching was associated with an increased amplitude N400. For auditory verifications, switching led to a larger late positive complex. Observed ERP effects of modality switching suggest property words access perceptual brain systems. Moreover, the timing and pattern of the effects suggest perceptual systems impact the decision-making stage in the verification of auditory properties, and the semantic stage in the verification of visual properties.

  8. Space station data system analysis/architecture study. Task 2: Options development, DR-5. Volume 2: Design options

    Science.gov (United States)

    1985-01-01

    The primary objective of Task 2 is the development of an information base that will support the conduct of trade studies and provide sufficient data to make key design/programmatic decisions. This includes: (1) the establishment of option categories that are most likely to influence Space Station Data System (SSDS) definition; (2) the identification of preferred options in each category; and (3) the characterization of these options with respect to performance attributes, constraints, cost and risk. This volume contains the options development for the design category. This category comprises alternative structures, configurations and techniques that can be used to develop designs that are responsive to the SSDS requirements. The specific areas discussed are software, including data base management and distributed operating systems; system architecture, including fault tolerance and system growth/automation/autonomy and system interfaces; time management; and system security/privacy. Also discussed are space communications and local area networking.

  9. Spontaneous mentalizing during an interactive real world task: an fMRI study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Spiers, Hugo J; Maguire, Eleanor A

    2006-01-01

    There are moments in everyday life when we need to consider the thoughts and intentions of other individuals in order to act in a socially appropriate manner. Most of this mentalizing occurs spontaneously as we go about our business in the complexity of the real world. As such, studying the neural basis of spontaneous mentalizing has been virtually impossible. Here we devised a means to achieve this by employing a unique combination of functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI), a detailed and interactive virtual reality simulation of a bustling familiar city, and a retrospective verbal report protocol. We were able to provide insights into the content of spontaneous mentalizing events and identify the brain regions that underlie them. We found increased activity in a number of regions, namely the right posterior superior temporal sulcus, the medial prefrontal cortex and the right temporal pole associated with spontaneous mentalizing. Furthermore, we observed the right posterior superior temporal sulcus to be consistently active during several different subtypes of mentalizing events. By contrast, medial prefrontal cortex seemed to be particularly involved in thinking about agents that were visible in the environment. Our findings show that it is possible to investigate the neural basis of mentalizing in a manner closer to its true context, the real world, opening up intriguing possibilities for making comparisons with those who have mentalizing problems.

  10. A longitudinal study on dual-tasking effects on gait: cognitive change predicts gait variance in the elderly.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Rebecca K MacAulay

    Full Text Available Neuropsychological abilities have found to explain a large proportion of variance in objective measures of walking gait that predict both dementia and falling within the elderly. However, to this date there has been little research on the interplay between changes in these neuropsychological processes and walking gait overtime. To our knowledge, the present study is the first to investigate intra-individual changes in neurocognitive test performance and gait step time at two-time points across a one-year span. Neuropsychological test scores from 440 elderly individuals deemed cognitively normal at Year One were analyzed via repeated measures t-tests to assess for decline in cognitive performance at Year Two. 34 of these 440 individuals neuropsychological test performance significantly declined at Year Two; whereas the "non-decliners" displayed improved memory, working memory, attention/processing speed test performance. Neuropsychological test scores were also submitted to factor analysis at both time points for data reduction purposes and to assess the factor stability overtime. Results at Year One yielded a three-factor solution: Language/Memory, Executive Attention/Processing Speed, and Working Memory. Year Two's test scores also generated a three-factor solution (Working Memory, Language/Executive Attention/Processing Speed, and Memory. Notably, language measures loaded on Executive Attention/Processing Speed rather than on the Memory factor at Year Two. Hierarchal multiple regression revealed that both Executive Attention/Processing Speed and sex significantly predicted variance in dual task step time at both time points. Remarkably, in the "decliners", the magnitude of the contribution of the neuropsychological characteristics to gait variance significantly increased at Year Two. In summary, this study provides longitudinal evidence of the dynamic relationship between intra-individual cognitive change and its influence on dual task gait

  11. Effect of a dual task on quantitative Timed Up and Go performance in community-dwelling older adults: A preliminary study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Smith, Erin; Walsh, Lorcan; Doyle, Julie; Greene, Barry; Blake, Catherine

    2017-08-01

    The Timed Up and Go test (TUG) is used as a measure of functional ability in older adults; however, the method of measurement does not allow us to determine which aspects of the test deficits occur in. The aim of the present study was to examine the ability of the quantitative TUG (QTUG) to measure performance during the TUG test under three different conditions - single task, motor task and cognitive dual task - and to compare performance between fallers and non-fallers in high-functioning community-dwelling older adults. A total of 37 community-dwelling older adults, 16 with a self-reported falls history in the previous year, were recruited. Participants underwent a falls risk assessment with a physiotherapist including the QTUG under three conditions (single task, motor task, cognitive dual-task). A total of 10 clinical parameters were chosen for analysis using mancova and a series of ancova, with age, sex and body mass index included as covariates. The mancova analysis showed a significant difference across the three task conditions (Wilk's Lambda F 20,186  = 3.37, P task and faller status (Wilk's Lambda F 20,192  = 1.131, P = 0.321) was found. ancova results for each of the parameters showed overall differences between single, motor and cognitive tasks for all of the variables, except time in double support. When faller and non-faller differences were explored, cadence and stride velocity was greater, and stride time longer in those with a prior history of falls. In community-dwelling older adults, these preliminary results show that a cognitive dual-task significantly (P performance in almost all parameters, with a significant (P task. Although no statistical difference was found between fallers and non-fallers for many of the parameters, cadence, stride time and stride velocity were statistically different (P performance under dual-task conditions between fallers and non-fallers in this population, and to look at the ability of dual-task

  12. Blink activity and task difficulty.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tanaka, Y; Yamaoka, K

    1993-08-01

    This study investigated the relationship between task difficulty and blink activity, which includes blink rate, blink amplitude, and blink duration. Two kinds of tasks established two levels of difficulty. In Exp. 1, a mental arithmetic task was used to examine the relationship. Analysis showed that blink rate for a difficult task was significantly higher than that for an easier one. In Exp. 2, a letter-search task (hiragana Japanese alphabet) was used while the other conditions were the same as those in Exp. 1; however, the results of this experiment were not influenced by the difficulty of the task. As results indicate that blink rate is related to not only difficulty but also the nature of the task, the nature of the task is probably dependent on a mechanism in information processing. The results for blink amplitude and blink duration showed no systematic change during either experiment.

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

    Science.gov (United States)

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

    2018-06-01

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

  14. Equal prefrontal cortex activation between males and females in a motor tasks and different visual imagery perspectives: a functional near-infrared spectroscopy (fNIRS study

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Thiago F. Dias Kanthack

    2013-09-01

    Full Text Available The purpose of this study was to compare the prefrontal cortex (PFC blood flow variation and time on in males and females while performing a motor task and imagery perspectives. Eighteen right handed subjects (11 males and 7 females were volunteers to this study. All subjects went through three randomly conditions, a motor task condition (MT in which they had to do a simple finger tap. The other conditions included practicing imagery in first and third views. During all the conditions, the fNIRS device was attached to the subject forehead to obtain the blood flow; the total time in each task which was measured with a chronometer. No difference had been found in any condition for both sexes in the PFC and time, nor for all subjects integrated in the PFC. Therefore, we conclu-de that both imageries can be used to mentally train a motor task, and probably both sexes can be benefited.

  15. Task A. Study of large P/sub T/ direct photon production at the ISR. Task B. Direct photon production at the tevatron (E-706). Task C. Search for fractional charge particles in semiconductors. Progress report, June 1, 1983-May 31, 1984

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Cleland, W.E.; Coon, D.D.; Engels, E. Jr.; Shepard, P.F.; Thompson, J.A.

    1984-01-01

    Task A is the Pitt contingent of the Axial Field Spectrometer Collaboration, performing experiment R807/808 at CERN. The experiment has studied several topics related to study of high P/sub T/ phenomena such as production of jets at high E/sub T/ and a comparison of their properties with jets seen in e + e - . We are working primarily on those aspects of the experiment involving reactions with photons in the final state. We are completing an analysis of prompt photons and pions produced at 11 0 in the center of mass, from data taken in 1982. Presently, new data are being taken with two large NaI arrays in place. With these data, we are studying low P/sub T/ (20 to 200 MeV/c) photon production as well as prompt photons in the range 1.5 < P/sub T/ < 4 GeV/c. For the 1.5 - 4 GeV/c data we plan to compare single photon production in pp and anti pp collisions. Task B is the Pitt contingent of the E706 collaboration, which is studying prompt photon production in πp and pp collisions at the Tevatron. The major contribution of the Pitt effort to the experiment is the provision of the array of semiconductor detectors required for the charged particle spectrometer to be used in the study of correlated hadronic jets. Task C is the search for fractional charge in semiconductors. Although the physics goals of this experiment are removed from those of the other tasks, the technical overlap with task B is extremely important. The construction and testing of semiconductor detectors requires specialized semiconductor physics knowledge and instrumentation, both of which are being developed concurrently by these two tasks. 109 references

  16. ITER vent filter conceptual study. Final report ITER Task S71 TD 70 (NID-9e) EU Task SEA 3-4

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Blomquist, R; Johansson, Kjell; Natalizio, A; Nilsson, Lars; Shen, K; Sjoeberg, A

    1995-02-01

    The aim of this study is to investigate vent filter technologies that could be applied to ITER in accidental situations and to discuss how effective they could be in reducing accidental releases of gases, vapors and aerosols to the atmosphere. The study`s main contents are: A description of vent filter technologies as they are used for fission reactors; A review of appropriate tritium removal technologies. The vent filter part deals mainly with aerosol removal. The tritium part includes removal of both elemental and oxidized tritium from the vent flow. An important conclusion is that current fission reactor vent filter systems do not remove elemental tritium from the vent stream. A third part of the study is scoping thermal-hydraulic and aerosol transport analyses in order to find realistic vent flow rates and aerosol transport characteristics. Theses analyses, which are based on ITER design data assumed at the time of analysis, have been performed by means of the codes RELAP5 and CONTAIN. Release estimates are also included. Suggestions and recommendations are given regarding how to design a reliable vent filter system. Suggested vent systems include: Vent ducts from vacuum vessel and heat exchanger departments, a water pool for condensation of steam, and equipment for removal of aerosols, elemental tritium and oxidized tritium. 42 refs, 6 tabs, 34 figs.

  17. Gaining Proficiency through Task-Based Activities in the Portuguese Classroom (Beginning and Intermediate Year Case Studies)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jones-Kellogg, Rebecca

    2015-01-01

    This paper describes a task-based activity used at the United States Military Academy, in their first- through third-semester Portuguese language sequence "Proficiencies" (Proficiências). The stand-alone task-based activity can be an effective tool in gaining foreign-language proficiency at even the lowest levels of classroom instruction…

  18. Computerization of the standard corsi block-tapping task affects its underlying cognitive concepts : A pilot study

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Claessen, Michiel H G; Van Der Ham, Ineke J M; Van Zandvoort, Martine J E

    2015-01-01

    The tablet computer initiates an important step toward computerized administration of neuropsychological tests. Because of its lack of standardization, the Corsi Block-Tapping Task could benefit from advantages inherent to computerization. This task, which requires reproduction of a sequence of

  19. Computerization of the Standard Corsi Block-Tapping Task Affects Its Underlying Cognitive Concepts : A Pilot Study

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Claessen, Michiel H G; Van Der Ham, Ineke J M; Van Zandvoort, Martine J E

    2014-01-01

    The tablet computer initiates an important step toward computerized administration of neuropsychological tests. Because of its lack of standardization, the Corsi Block-Tapping Task could benefit from advantages inherent to computerization. This task, which requires reproduction of a sequence of

  20. Students with Attention Deficit Disorder Carrying out Tasks of Reading Comprehension and Text Production: A Comparative Study in 4th-Grade Students of Primary Education in Chile

    OpenAIRE

    Fabián Andrés Inostroza-Inostroza

    2017-01-01

    The present article aims to compare the performance in students with Attention Deficit Disorder to those who do not present it, in tasks of reading comprehension and text production carried out by students attending the fourth grade of primary education. This quantitative, non-experimental comparative study aims to provide evidence regarding the way in which this condition limits the learning outcomes in the tasks of comprehension and production of texts, language, and communication. One the ...

  1. Cortical underconnectivity coupled with preserved visuospatial cognition in autism: Evidence from an fMRI study of an embedded figures task

    OpenAIRE

    Damarla, Saudamini Roy; Keller, Timothy A.; Kana, Rajesh K.; Cherkassky, Vladimir L.; Williams, Diane L.; Minshew, Nancy J.; Just, Marcel Adam

    2010-01-01

    Individuals with high-functioning autism sometimes exhibit intact or superior performance on visuospatial tasks, in contrast to impaired functioning in other domains such as language comprehension, executive tasks, and social functions. The goal of the current study was to investigate the neural bases of preserved visuospatial processing in high-functioning autism from the perspective of the cortical underconnectivity theory. We used a combination of behavioral, functional magnetic resonance ...

  2. Reward contingencies and the recalibration of task monitoring and reward systems: a high-density electrical mapping study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Morie, K P; De Sanctis, P; Foxe, J J

    2014-07-25

    Task execution almost always occurs in the context of reward-seeking or punishment-avoiding behavior. As such, ongoing task-monitoring systems are influenced by reward anticipation systems. In turn, when a task has been executed either successfully or unsuccessfully, future iterations of that task will be re-titrated on the basis of the task outcome. Here, we examined the neural underpinnings of the task-monitoring and reward-evaluation systems to better understand how they govern reward-seeking behavior. Twenty-three healthy adult participants performed a task where they accrued points that equated to real world value (gift cards) by responding as rapidly as possible within an allotted timeframe, while success rate was titrated online by changing the duration of the timeframe dependent on participant performance. Informative cues initiated each trial, indicating the probability of potential reward or loss (four levels from very low to very high). We manipulated feedback by first informing participants of task success/failure, after which a second feedback signal indicated actual magnitude of reward/loss. High-density electroencephalography (EEG) recordings allowed for examination of event-related potentials (ERPs) to the informative cues and in turn, to both feedback signals. Distinct ERP components associated with reward cues, task-preparatory and task-monitoring processes, and reward feedback processes were identified. Unsurprisingly, participants displayed increased ERP amplitudes associated with task-preparatory processes following cues that predicted higher chances of reward. They also rapidly updated reward and loss prediction information dependent on task performance after the first feedback signal. Finally, upon reward receipt, initial reward probability was no longer taken into account. Rather, ERP measures suggested that only the magnitude of actual reward or loss was now processed. Reward and task-monitoring processes are clearly dissociable, but

  3. High Working Memory Load Impairs Language Processing during a Simulated Piloting Task: An ERP and Pupillometry Study

    Science.gov (United States)

    Causse, Mickaël; Peysakhovich, Vsevolod; Fabre, Eve F.

    2016-01-01

    Given the important amount of visual and auditory linguistic information that pilots have to process, operating an aircraft generates a high working-memory load (WML). In this context, the ability to focus attention on relevant information and to remain responsive to concurrent stimuli might be altered. Consequently, understanding the effects of WML on the processing of both linguistic targets and distractors is of particular interest in the study of pilot performance. In the present work, participants performed a simplified piloting task in which they had to follow one of three colored aircraft, according to specific written instructions (i.e., the written word for the color corresponding to the color of one of the aircraft) and to ignore either congruent or incongruent concurrent auditory distractors (i.e., a spoken name of color). The WML was manipulated with an n-back sub-task. Participants were instructed to apply the current written instruction in the low WML condition, and the 2-back written instruction in the high WML condition. Electrophysiological results revealed a major effect of WML at behavioral (i.e., decline of piloting performance), electrophysiological, and autonomic levels (i.e., greater pupil diameter). Increased WML consumed resources that could not be allocated to the processing of the linguistic stimuli, as indexed by lower P300/P600 amplitudes. Also, significantly, lower P600 responses were measured in incongruent vs. congruent trials in the low WML condition, showing a higher difficulty reorienting attention toward the written instruction, but this effect was canceled in the high WML condition. This suppression of interference in the high load condition is in line with the engagement/distraction trade-off model. We propose that P300/P600 components could be reliable indicators of WML and that they allow an estimation of its impact on the processing of linguistic stimuli. PMID:27252639

  4. 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.

  5. Experimental facilities for gas-cooled reactor safety studies. Task group on Advanced Reactor Experimental Facilities (TAREF)

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    2009-01-01

    In 2007, the NEA Committee on the Safety of Nuclear Installations (CSNI) completed a study on Nuclear Safety Research in OECD Countries: Support Facilities for Existing and Advanced Reactors (SFEAR) which focused on facilities suitable for current and advanced water reactor systems. In a subsequent collective opinion on the subject, the CSNI recommended to conduct a similar exercise for Generation IV reactor designs, aiming to develop a strategy for ' better preparing the CSNI to play a role in the planned extension of safety research beyond the needs set by current operating reactors'. In that context, the CSNI established the Task Group on Advanced Reactor Experimental Facilities (TAREF) in 2008 with the objective of providing an overview of facilities suitable for performing safety research relevant to gas-cooled reactors and sodium fast reactors. This report addresses gas-cooled reactors; a similar report covering sodium fast reactors is under preparation. The findings of the TAREF are expected to trigger internationally funded CSNI projects on relevant safety issues at the key facilities identified. Such CSNI-sponsored projects constitute a means for efficiently obtaining the necessary data through internationally co-ordinated research. This report provides an overview of experimental facilities that can be used to carry out nuclear safety research for gas-cooled reactors and identifies priorities for organizing international co-operative programmes at selected facilities. The information has been collected and analysed by a Task Group on Advanced Reactor Experimental Facilities (TAREF) as part of an ongoing initiative of the NEA Committee on the Safety of Nuclear Installations (CSNI) which aims to define and to implement a strategy for the efficient utilisation of facilities and resources for Generation IV reactor systems. (author)

  6. ITER vent filter conceptual study. Final report ITER Task S71 TD 70 (NID-9e) EU Task SEA 3-4

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Blomquist, R.; Johansson, Kjell; Natalizio, A.; Nilsson, Lars; Shen, K.; Sjoeberg, A.

    1995-02-01

    The aim of this study is to investigate vent filter technologies that could be applied to ITER in accidental situations and to discuss how effective they could be in reducing accidental releases of gases, vapors and aerosols to the atmosphere. The study's main contents are: A description of vent filter technologies as they are used for fission reactors; A review of appropriate tritium removal technologies. The vent filter part deals mainly with aerosol removal. The tritium part includes removal of both elemental and oxidized tritium from the vent flow. An important conclusion is that current fission reactor vent filter systems do not remove elemental tritium from the vent stream. A third part of the study is scoping thermal-hydraulic and aerosol transport analyses in order to find realistic vent flow rates and aerosol transport characteristics. Theses analyses, which are based on ITER design data assumed at the time of analysis, have been performed by means of the codes RELAP5 and CONTAIN. Release estimates are also included. Suggestions and recommendations are given regarding how to design a reliable vent filter system. Suggested vent systems include: Vent ducts from vacuum vessel and heat exchanger departments, a water pool for condensation of steam, and equipment for removal of aerosols, elemental tritium and oxidized tritium. 42 refs, 6 tabs, 34 figs

  7. Effects of Pro-Tex on zebrafish (Danio rerio) larvae, adult common carp (Cyprinus carpio) and adult yellowtail kingfish (Seriola lalandi)

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Boerrigter, J.G.J.; Vis, van de J.W.; Bos, van den R.; Abbink, W.; Spanings, T.; Zethof, J.; Louzao Martinez, L.; Andel, van W.F.M.; Lopez-Luna, J.; Flik, G.

    2014-01-01

    Aquaculture practices bring several stressful events to fish. Stressors not only activate the hypothalamus–pituitary–interrenal-axis, but also evoke cellular stress responses. Up-regulation of heat shock proteins (HSPs) is among the best studied mechanisms of the cellular stress response. An extract

  8. Activation of the Prefrontal Cortex While Performing a Task at Preferred Slow Pace and Metronome Slow Pace: A Functional Near-Infrared Spectroscopy Study

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Kaori Shimoda

    2014-01-01

    Full Text Available Individuals have a preferred pace at which they perform voluntary repetitive movements. Previous studies have reported that greater activation of the prefrontal cortex was observed during self-initiated movements than during externally triggered movements. The purpose of the present study is to compare the activation of the prefrontal cortex induced when the subjects performed a peg-board task at their preferred slow pace (PSP, the self-initiated condition with that induced when they performed the same task at metronome slow pace (MSP, the externally triggered condition using functional near-infrared spectroscopy. Healthy subjects performed the task while sitting in a chair. By assessing the activated channels individually, we confirmed that all of the prefrontal regions of interest were activated by both tasks. In the second-level analyses, we found that the activation detected in the frontopolar cortex (FPPFC; Brodmann area 10 was higher during the PSP task than during the MSP task. The FPPFC is known to be at the top of prefrontal hierarchy, and specifically involved in evaluating self-generated information. In addition, the FPPFC plays a role in coordinating lateral prefrontal cortex. In the present study, the subjects evaluated and managed the internally generated PSP by coordinating the activity of other lower level prefrontal regions.

  9. Activation of the prefrontal cortex while performing a task at preferred slow pace and metronome slow pace: a functional near-infrared spectroscopy study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shimoda, Kaori; Moriguchi, Yoshiya; Tsuchiya, Kenji; Katsuyama, Shiori; Tozato, Fusae

    2014-01-01

    Individuals have a preferred pace at which they perform voluntary repetitive movements. Previous studies have reported that greater activation of the prefrontal cortex was observed during self-initiated movements than during externally triggered movements. The purpose of the present study is to compare the activation of the prefrontal cortex induced when the subjects performed a peg-board task at their preferred slow pace (PSP, the self-initiated condition) with that induced when they performed the same task at metronome slow pace (MSP, the externally triggered condition) using functional near-infrared spectroscopy. Healthy subjects performed the task while sitting in a chair. By assessing the activated channels individually, we confirmed that all of the prefrontal regions of interest were activated by both tasks. In the second-level analyses, we found that the activation detected in the frontopolar cortex (FPPFC; Brodmann area 10) was higher during the PSP task than during the MSP task. The FPPFC is known to be at the top of prefrontal hierarchy, and specifically involved in evaluating self-generated information. In addition, the FPPFC plays a role in coordinating lateral prefrontal cortex. In the present study, the subjects evaluated and managed the internally generated PSP by coordinating the activity of other lower level prefrontal regions.

  10. Decreased response inhibition to sad faces during explicit and implicit tasks in females with depression: Evidence from an event-related potential study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yu, Fengqiong; Zhou, Xiaoqing; Qing, Wu; Li, Dan; Li, Jing; Chen, Xingui; Ji, Gongjun; Dong, Yi; Luo, Yuejia; Zhu, Chunyan; Wang, Kai

    2017-01-30

    The present study aimed to investigate neural substrates of response inhibition to sad faces across explicit and implicit tasks in depressed female patients. Event-related potentials were obtained while participants performed modified explicit and implicit emotional go/no-go tasks. Compared to controls, depressed patients showed decreased discrimination accuracy and amplitudes of original and nogo-go difference waves at the P3 interval in response inhibition to sad faces during explicit and implicit tasks. P3 difference wave were positively correlated with discrimination accuracy and were independent of clinical assessment. The activation of right dorsal prefrontal cortex was larger for the implicit than for the explicit task in sad condition in health controls, but was similar for the two tasks in depressed patients. The present study indicated that selectively impairment in response inhibition to sad faces in depressed female patients occurred at the behavior inhibition stage across implicit and explicit tasks and may be a trait-like marker of depression. Longitudinal studies are required to determine whether decreased response inhibition to sad faces increases the risk for future depressive episodes so that appropriate treatment can be administered to patients. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Ireland Ltd. All rights reserved.

  11. Functional magnetic resonance imaging study of neuronal activation during cognitive tasks related to frontal lobe functions in patients with obsessive-compulsive disorder

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Koizumi, Hazuki

    2010-01-01

    Previous neurological studies and brain activation studies using functional magnetic resonance imaging (f-MRI) have suggested frontal lobe dysfunctions in patients with obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD). However, no f-MRI study has used cognitive tasks reflecting fluency of ideas and memory related to frontal lobe functions. The purposes of this study are to assess the neuropsychological examinations and brain activities of OCD patients using f-MRI, as well as, to investigate the relationship between the severity of obsessive-compulsive symptoms and frontal lobe functions. The subjects were 22 right-handed persons consisting of 11 outpatients who had received a diagnosis of OCD based on diagnostic and statistical manual of mental disorders-fourth edition (DMS-IV) and age- and sex-matched 11 healthy controls. All subjects were examined using Yale-Brown Obsessive-Compulsive Scale (Y-BOCS), Wechsler Adult Intelligence Scale-3 rd edition (WAIS-III), Wisconsin Card Sorting Test (WCST), Modified Stroop Test (MST), Verbal Fluency Test (VFT), Idea Fluency Test (IFT), and Rey-Auditory Verbal Learning Test (RAVLT). The brain activities were measured with f-MRI during three cognitive tasks; Task 1: idea generation (IFT), Task 2: word generation (VFT), and Task 3: remembrance of words (RAVLT). The block design was used in the trials, in which rest and activating tasks were alternated for five times in each task. The neuropsychological examinations revealed significant differences in the numbers of categories achieved and total errors in WCST, times of Part I in MST, scores of VFT and IFT, and the results of RAVLT between the OCD patients and healthy controls. Using functional brain imaging with f-MRI, noticeable activations were found in the superior, middle, inferior frontal gyri, and the cingulate gyrus during all tasks in both the OCD and control groups. The OCD patients had significantly higher activation in the cingulate gyrus than normal controls during Task 1 (IFT

  12. Standards for the Reporting of Genetic Counseling Interventions in Research and Other Studies (GCIRS): an NSGC Task Force Report.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hooker, Gillian W; Babu, D; Myers, M F; Zierhut, H; McAllister, M

    2017-06-01

    As the demand for evidence to support the value of genetic counseling increases, it is critical that reporting of genetic counseling interventions in research and other types of studies (e.g. process improvement or service evaluation studies) adopt greater rigor. As in other areas of healthcare, the appraisal, synthesis, and translation of research findings into genetic counseling practice are likely to be improved if clear specifications of genetic counseling interventions are reported when studies involving genetic counseling are published. To help improve reporting practices, the National Society of Genetic Counselors (NSGC) convened a task force in 2015 to develop consensus standards for the reporting of genetic counseling interventions. Following review by the NSGC Board of Directors, the NSGC Practice Guidelines Committee and the editorial board of the Journal of Genetic Counseling, 23 items across 8 domains were proposed as standards for the reporting of genetic counseling interventions in the published literature (GCIRS: Genetic Counseling Intervention Reporting Standards). The authors recommend adoption of these standards by authors and journals when reporting studies involving genetic counseling interventions.

  13. Computerization of the standard corsi block-tapping task affects its underlying cognitive concepts: a pilot study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Claessen, Michiel H G; van der Ham, Ineke J M; van Zandvoort, Martine J E

    2015-01-01

    The tablet computer initiates an important step toward computerized administration of neuropsychological tests. Because of its lack of standardization, the Corsi Block-Tapping Task could benefit from advantages inherent to computerization. This task, which requires reproduction of a sequence of movements by tapping blocks as demonstrated by an examiner, is widely used as a representative of visuospatial attention and working memory. The aim was to validate a computerized version of the Corsi Task (e-Corsi) by comparing recall accuracy to that on the standard task. Forty university students (Mage = 22.9 years, SD = 2.7 years; 20 female) performed the standard Corsi Task and the e-Corsi on an iPad 3. Results showed higher accuracy in forward reproduction on the standard Corsi compared with the e-Corsi, whereas backward performance was comparable. These divergent performance patterns on the 2 versions (small-to-medium effect sizes) are explained as a result of motor priming and interference effects. This finding implies that computerization has serious consequences for the cognitive concepts that the Corsi Task is assumed to assess. Hence, whereas the e-Corsi was shown to be useful with respect to administration and registration, these findings also stress the need for reconsideration of the underlying theoretical concepts of this task.

  14. Creative and Stylistic Devices Employed by Children During a Storybook Narrative Task: A Cross-Cultural Study

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gorman, Brenda K.; Fiestas, Christine E.; Peña, Elizabeth D.; Clark, Maya Reynolds

    2018-01-01

    Purpose The purpose of this study was to analyze the effects of culture on the creative and stylistic features children employ when producing narratives based on wordless picture books. Method Participants included 60 first- and second-grade African American, Latino American, and Caucasian children. A subset of narratives based on wordless picture books collected as part of a larger study was coded and analyzed for the following creative and stylistic conventions: organizational style (topic centered, linear, cyclical), dialogue (direct, indirect), reference to character relationships (nature, naming, conduct), embellishment (fantasy, suspense, conflict), and paralinguistic devices (expressive sounds, exclamatory utterances). Results Many similarities and differences between ethnic groups were found. No significant differences were found between ethnic groups in organizational style or use of paralinguistic devices. African American children included more fantasy in their stories, Latino children named their characters more often, and Caucasian children made more references to the nature of character relationships. Conclusion Even within the context of a highly structured narrative task based on wordless picture books, culture influences children’s production of narratives. Enhanced understanding of narrative structure, creativity, and style is necessary to provide ecologically valid narrative assessment and intervention for children from diverse cultural backgrounds. PMID:21278258

  15. Advanced turbine systems program conceptual design and product development task 5 -- market study of the gas fired ATS. Topical report

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    NONE

    1995-05-01

    Solar Turbines Incorporated (Solar), in partnership with the Department of Energy, will develop a family of advanced gas turbine-based power systems (ATS) for widespread commercialization within the domestic and international industrial marketplace, and to the rapidly changing electric power generation industry. The objective of the jointly-funded Program is to introduce an ATS with high efficiency, and markedly reduced emissions levels, in high numbers as rapidly as possible following introduction. This Topical Report is submitted in response to the requirements outlined in Task 5 of the Department of Energy METC Contract on Advanced Combustion Systems, Contract No, DE AC21-93MC30246 (Contract), for a Market Study of the Gas Fired Advanced Turbine System. It presents a market study for the ATS proposed by Solar, and will examine both the economic and siting constraints of the ATS compared with competing systems in the various candidate markets. Also contained within this report is an examination and analysis of Solar`s ATS and its ability to compete in future utility and industrial markets, as well as factors affecting the marketability of the ATS.

  16. Multi-level comparison of empathy in schizophrenia: an fMRI study of a cartoon task.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lee, Seung Jae; Kang, Do Hyung; Kim, Chi-Won; Gu, Bon Mi; Park, Ji-Young; Choi, Chi-Hoon; Shin, Na Young; Lee, Jong-Min; Kwon, Jun Soo

    2010-02-28

    Empathy deficits might play a role in social dysfunction in schizophrenia. However, few studies have investigated the neuroanatomical underpinnings of the subcomponents of empathy in schizophrenia. This study investigated the hemodynamic responses to three subcomponents of empathy in patients with schizophrenia (N=15) and healthy volunteers (N=18), performing an empathy cartoon task during functional magnetic resonance imaging. The experiment used a block design with four conditions: cognitive, emotional, and inhibitory empathy, and physical causality control. Data were analyzed by comparing the blood-oxygen-level-dependent (BOLD) signal activation between the two groups. The cognitive empathy condition activated the right temporal pole to a lesser extent in the patient group than in comparison subjects. In the emotional and inhibitory conditions, the patients showed greater activation in the left insula and in the right middle/inferior frontal cortex, respectively. These findings add to our understanding of the impaired empathy in patients with schizophrenia by identifying a multi-level cortical dysfunction that underlies a deficit in each subcomponent of empathy and highlighting the importance of the fronto-temporal cortical network in ability to empathize. Copyright (c) 2009 Elsevier Ireland Ltd. All rights reserved.

  17. Cerebellum as a forward but not inverse model in visuomotor adaptation task: a tDCS-based and modeling study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yavari, Fatemeh; Mahdavi, Shirin; Towhidkhah, Farzad; Ahmadi-Pajouh, Mohammad-Ali; Ekhtiari, Hamed; Darainy, Mohammad

    2016-04-01

    Despite several pieces of evidence, which suggest that the human brain employs internal models for motor control and learning, the location of these models in the brain is not yet clear. In this study, we used transcranial direct current stimulation (tDCS) to manipulate right cerebellar function, while subjects adapt to a visuomotor task. We investigated the effect of this manipulation on the internal forward and inverse models by measuring two kinds of behavior: generalization of training in one direction to neighboring directions (as a proxy for inverse models) and localization of the hand position after movement without visual feedback (as a proxy for forward model). The experimental results showed no effect of cerebellar tDCS on generalization, but significant effect on localization. These observations support the idea that the cerebellum is a possible brain region for internal forward, but not inverse model formation. We also used a realistic human head model to calculate current density distribution in the brain. The result of this model confirmed the passage of current through the cerebellum. Moreover, to further explain some observed experimental results, we modeled the visuomotor adaptation process with the help of a biologically inspired method known as population coding. The effect of tDCS was also incorporated in the model. The results of this modeling study closely match our experimental data and provide further evidence in line with the idea that tDCS manipulates FM's function in the cerebellum.

  18. Feasibility of sensory tongue stimulation combined with task-specific therapy in people with spinal cord injury: a case study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chisholm, Amanda E; Malik, Raza Naseem; Blouin, Jean-Sébastien; Borisoff, Jaimie; Forwell, Susan; Lam, Tania

    2014-06-06

    Previous evidence suggests the effects of task-specific therapy can be further enhanced when sensory stimulation is combined with motor practice. Sensory tongue stimulation is thought to facilitate activation of regions in the brain that are important for balance and gait. Improvements in balance and gait have significant implications for functional mobility for people with incomplete spinal cord injury (iSCI). The aim of this case study was to evaluate the feasibility of a lab- and home-based program combining sensory tongue stimulation with balance and gait training on functional outcomes in people with iSCI. Two male participants (S1 and S2) with chronic motor iSCI completed 12 weeks of balance and gait training (3 lab and 2 home based sessions per week) combined with sensory tongue stimulation using the Portable Neuromodulation Stimulator (PoNS). Laboratory based training involved 20 minutes of standing balance with eyes closed and 30 minutes of body-weight support treadmill walking. Home based sessions consisted of balancing with eyes open and walking with parallel bars or a walker for up to 20 minutes each. Subjects continued daily at-home training for an additional 12 weeks as follow-up. Both subjects were able to complete a minimum of 83% of the training sessions. Standing balance with eyes closed increased from 0.2 to 4.0 minutes and 0.0 to 0.2 minutes for S1 and S2, respectively. Balance confidence also improved at follow-up after the home-based program. Over ground walking speed improved by 0.14 m/s for S1 and 0.07 m/s for S2, and skilled walking function improved by 60% and 21% for S1 and S2, respectively. Sensory tongue stimulation combined with task-specific training may be a feasible method for improving balance and gait in people with iSCI. Our findings warrant further controlled studies to determine the added benefits of sensory tongue stimulation to rehabilitation training.

  19. Studies of particle interactions in bubble chamber, spark chambers and counter experiments: Task P. Annual progress report

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Jones, L.M.; Holloway, L.; O'Halloran, T.A. Jr.; Simmons, R.O.

    1983-07-01

    Our current work reflects the general aim of this task, which is to calculate phenomenological theories of interest to present experiments. Recently, this has emphasized the jet calculus approach to properties of quark and gluon jets. Progress is reviewed

  20. Client-related work tasks and meaning of work: results from a longitudinal study among eldercare workers in Denmark

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Tufte, Pernille; Clausen, Thomas; Nabe-Nielsen, Kirsten

    2011-01-01

    PURPOSE: To investigate the association between the perception of client-related work tasks and the experience of meaning of work among eldercare workers in the Danish eldercare sector. METHODS: We used baseline and follow-up questionnaire data from 3,985 female eldercare workers. The eldercare...... or rarely have this experience. Care workers who frequently experience to have to end a visit prematurely are significantly less likely to experience meaning of work at follow-up than care workers who rarely experience this. Experiences of having time to perform other than pre-planned tasks and to have...... workers' perception of the client-related work tasks was measured by six items. Meaning of work was measured by a three-item scale. General linear modelling was used to investigate the association between the client-related work tasks at baseline and experience of meaning of work at follow-up adjusted...

  1. Network Centric Operations (NCO) Case Study: U.S. Navy's Fifth Fleet Task Force 50 in Operation ENDURING FREEDOM

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Garstka, John; Holloman, Kimberly; Balisle, Christine W; Adkins, Mark; Kruse, Jon

    2006-01-01

    .... The focus is on the background and creation of Task Force 50 (TF-50), and primarily on the evolution of the transformational capabilities that permitted TF-50 to succeed in the manner that it did...

  2. 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.)

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

    Science.gov (United States)

    Olfers, Kerwin J F; Band, Guido P H

    2018-01-01

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

  4. Quantitative gait analysis under dual-task in older people with mild cognitive impairment: a reliability study

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Gutmanis Iris

    2009-09-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Reliability of quantitative gait assessment while dual-tasking (walking while doing a secondary task such as talking in people with cognitive impairment is unknown. Dual-tasking gait assessment is becoming highly important for mobility research with older adults since better reflects their performance in the basic activities of daily living. Our purpose was to establish the test-retest reliability of assessing quantitative gait variables using an electronic walkway in older adults with mild cognitive impairment (MCI under single and dual-task conditions. Methods The gait performance of 11 elderly individuals with MCI was evaluated using an electronic walkway (GAITRite® System in two sessions, one week apart. Six gait parameters (gait velocity, step length, stride length, step time, stride time, and double support time were assessed under two conditions: single-task (sG: usual walking and dual-task (dG: counting backwards from 100 while walking. Test-retest reliability was determined using intra-class correlation coefficient (ICC. Gait variability was measured using coefficient of variation (CoV. Results Eleven participants (average age = 76.6 years, SD = 7.3 were assessed. They were high functioning (Clinical Dementia Rating Score = 0.5 with a mean Mini-Mental Status Exam (MMSE score of 28 (SD = 1.56, and a mean Montreal Cognitive Assessment (MoCA score of 22.8 (SD = 1.23. Under dual-task conditions, mean gait velocity (GV decreased significantly (sGV = 119.11 ± 20.20 cm/s; dGV = 110.88 ± 19.76 cm/s; p = 0.005. Additionally, under dual-task conditions, higher gait variability was found on stride time, step time, and double support time. Test-retest reliability was high (ICC>0.85 for the six parameters evaluated under both conditions. Conclusion In older people with MCI, variability of time-related gait parameters increased with dual-tasking suggesting cognitive control of gait performance. Assessment of quantitative gait

  5. 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....

  6. Can smartphones be used to bring computer-based tasks from the lab to the field? A mobile experience-sampling method study about the pace of life.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Stieger, Stefan; Lewetz, David; Reips, Ulf-Dietrich

    2017-12-06

    Researchers are increasingly using smartphones to collect scientific data. To date, most smartphone studies have collected questionnaire data or data from the built-in sensors. So far, few studies have analyzed whether smartphones can also be used to conduct computer-based tasks (CBTs). Using a mobile experience-sampling method study and a computer-based tapping task as examples (N = 246; twice a day for three weeks, 6,000+ measurements), we analyzed how well smartphones can be used to conduct a CBT. We assessed methodological aspects such as potential technologically induced problems, dropout, task noncompliance, and the accuracy of millisecond measurements. Overall, we found few problems: Dropout rate was low, and the time measurements were very accurate. Nevertheless, particularly at the beginning of the study, some participants did not comply with the task instructions, probably because they did not read the instructions before beginning the task. To summarize, the results suggest that smartphones can be used to transfer CBTs from the lab to the field, and that real-world variations across device manufacturers, OS types, and CPU load conditions did not substantially distort the results.

  7. BASE MAP DATASET, KINGFISHER COUNTY, OKLAHOMA

    Data.gov (United States)

    Federal Emergency Management Agency, Department of Homeland Security — FEMA Framework Basemap datasets comprise six of the seven FGDC themes of geospatial data that are used by most GIS applications (Note: the seventh framework theme,...

  8. [What is hidden behind the Baking Tray Task? Study of sensibility and specificity in right-hemispheric stroke patients].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Garcia-Fernandez, Juan; Garcia-Molina, Alberto; Aparicio-Lopez, Celeste; Sanchez-Carrion, Rocío; Ensenat, Antònia; Pena-Casanova, Jordi; Roig-Rovira, Teresa

    2015-12-16

    Tham and Tegner proposed the Baking Tray Task (BTT) as a fast simple assessment test for detecting spatial negligence. However, very few studies have examined its validity as a diagnostic test. To analyse the diagnostic validity of the BTT by measuring its specificity and sensitivity in a sample of subjects with right hemisphere strokes. Forty-eight patients with right hemisphere vascular lesions were distributed in two groups (negligence group, n = 35; non-negligence group, n = 13) according to the scores obtained in a battery of visuospatial examination tests. The participants' performance on the BTT was compared with that of a healthy control group (n = 12). The results showed a high level of sensitivity of the BTT, but low specificity. The performance on the BTT of eight of the 13 members of the non-negligence group was suggestive of negligence. The BTT has proved to be a sensitive test for the detection of spatial negligence. Yet, based on its low specificity, its use alone as a single diagnostic test is not recommended.

  9. Coding task performance in early adolescence: A large-scale controlled study into boy-girl differences

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sanne eDekker

    2013-08-01

    Full Text Available This study examined differences between boys and girls regarding efficiency of information processing in early adolescence. 306 healthy adolescents (50.3% boys in grade 7 and 9 (aged 13 and 15 respectively performed a coding task based on over-learned symbols. An age effect was revealed as subjects in grade 9 performed better than subjects in grade 7. Main effects for sex were found in the advantage of girls. The 25% best-performing students comprised twice as many girls as boys. The opposite pattern was found for the worst performing 25%. In addition, a main effect was found for educational track in favor of the highest track. No interaction effects were found. School grades did not explain additional variance in LDST performance. This indicates that cognitive performance is relatively independent from school performance. Student characteristics like age, sex and education level were more important for efficiency of information processing than school performance. The findings imply that after age 13, efficiency of information processing is still developing and that girls outperform boys in this respect. The findings provide new information on the mechanisms underlying boy-girl differences in scholastic performance.

  10. Negative induced mood influences word production: An event-related potentials study with a covert picture naming task.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hinojosa, J A; Fernández-Folgueiras, U; Albert, J; Santaniello, G; Pozo, M A; Capilla, A

    2017-01-27

    The present event-related potentials (ERPs) study investigated the effects of mood on phonological encoding processes involved in word generation. For this purpose, negative, positive and neutral affective states were induced in participants during three different recording sessions using short film clips. After the mood induction procedure, participants performed a covert picture naming task in which they searched letters. The negative compared to the neutral mood condition elicited more negative amplitudes in a component peaking around 290ms. Furthermore, results from source localization analyses suggested that this activity was potentially generated in the left prefrontal cortex. In contrast, no differences were found in the comparison between positive and neutral moods. Overall, current data suggest that processes involved in the retrieval of phonological information during speech generation are impaired when participants are in a negative mood. The mechanisms underlying these effects were discussed in relation to linguistic and attentional processes, as well as in terms of the use of heuristics. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  11. Comparing Auditory Noise Treatment with Stimulant Medication on Cognitive Task Performance in Children with Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder: Results from a Pilot Study.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Söderlund, Göran B W; Björk, Christer; Gustafsson, Peik

    2016-01-01

    Recent research has shown that acoustic white noise (80 dB) can improve task performance in people with attention deficits and/or Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD). This is attributed to the phenomenon of stochastic resonance in which a certain amount of noise can improve performance in a brain that is not working at its optimum. We compare here the effect of noise exposure with the effect of stimulant medication on cognitive task performance in ADHD. The aim of the present study was to compare the effects of auditory noise exposure with stimulant medication for ADHD children on a cognitive test battery. A group of typically developed children (TDC) took the same tests as a comparison. Twenty children with ADHD of combined or inattentive subtypes and twenty TDC matched for age and gender performed three different tests (word recall, spanboard and n-back task) during exposure to white noise (80 dB) and in a silent condition. The ADHD children were tested with and without central stimulant medication. In the spanboard- and the word recall tasks, but not in the 2-back task, white noise exposure led to significant improvements for both non-medicated and medicated ADHD children. No significant effects of medication were found on any of the three tasks. This pilot study shows that exposure to white noise resulted in a task improvement that was larger than the one with stimulant medication thus opening up the possibility of using auditory noise as an alternative, non-pharmacological treatment of cognitive ADHD symptoms.

  12. Comparing Auditory Noise Treatment with Stimulant Medication on Cognitive Task Performance in Children with Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder: Results from a Pilot Study

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Göran B W Söderlund

    2016-09-01

    Full Text Available Background: Recent research has shown that acoustic white noise (80 dB can improve task performance in people with attention deficits and/or Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD. This is attributed to the phenomenon of stochastic resonance in which a certain amount of noise can improve performance in a brain that is not working at its optimum. We compare here the effect of noise exposure with the effect of stimulant medication on cognitive task performance in ADHD. The aim of the present study was to compare the effects of auditory noise exposure with stimulant medication for ADHD children on a cognitive test battery. A group of typically developed children (TDC took the same tests as a comparison.Methods: Twenty children with ADHD of combined or inattentive subtypes and twenty typically developed children matched for age and gender performed three different tests (word recall, spanboard and n-back task during exposure to white noise (80 dB and in a silent condition. The ADHD children were tested with and without central stimulant medication.Results: In the spanboard- and the word recall tasks, but not in the 2-back task, white noise exposure led to significant improvements for both non-medicated and medicated ADHD children. No significant effects of medication were found on any of the three tasks.Conclusion: This pilot study shows that exposure to white noise resulted in a task improvement that was larger than the one with stimulant medication thus opening up the possibility of using auditory noise as an alternative, non-pharmacological treatment of cognitive ADHD symptoms.

  13. Distinction between perceptual and attentional processing in working memory tasks: a study of phase-locked and induced oscillatory brain dynamics.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Deiber, Marie-Pierre; Missonnier, Pascal; Bertrand, Olivier; Gold, Gabriel; Fazio-Costa, Lara; Ibañez, Vicente; Giannakopoulos, Panteleimon

    2007-01-01

    Working memory involves the short-term storage and manipulation of information necessary for cognitive performance, including comprehension, learning, reasoning and planning. Although electroencephalogram (EEG) rhythms are modulated during working memory, the temporal relationship of EEG oscillations with the eliciting event has not been well studied. In particular, the dynamics of the neural network supporting memory processes may be best captured in induced oscillations, characterized by a loose temporal link with the stimulus. In order to differentiate induced from evoked functional processes, the present study proposes a time-frequency analysis of the 3 to 30 Hz EEG oscillatory activity in a verbal n-back working memory paradigm. Control tasks were designed to identify oscillatory activity related to stimulus presentation (passive task) and focused attention to the stimulus (detection task). Evoked theta activity (4-8 Hz) phase-locked to the visual stimulus was evidenced in the parieto-occipital region for all tasks. In parallel, induced theta activity was recorded in the frontal region for detection and n-back memory tasks, but not for the passive task, suggesting its dependency on focused attention to the stimulus. Sustained induced oscillatory activity was identified in relation to working memory in the theta and beta (15-25 Hz) frequency bands, larger for the highest memory load. Its late occurrence limited to nonmatched items suggests that it could be related to item retention and active maintenance for further task requirements. Induced theta and beta activities displayed respectively a frontal and parietal topographical distribution, providing further functional information on the fronto-posterior network supporting working memory.

  14. Amnestic mild cognitive impairment: functional MR imaging study of response in posterior cingulate cortex and adjacent precuneus during problem-solving tasks.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jin, Guangwei; Li, Kuncheng; Hu, Yingying; Qin, Yulin; Wang, Xiangqing; Xiang, Jie; Yang, Yanhui; Lu, Jie; Zhong, Ning

    2011-11-01

    To compare the blood oxygen level-dependent (BOLD) response, measured with functional magnetic resonance (MR) imaging, in the posterior cingulate cortex (PCC) and adjacent precuneus regions between healthy control subjects and patients with amnestic mild cognitive impairment (MCI) during problem-solving tasks. This study was approved by the institutional review board. Each subject provided written informed consent. Thirteen patients with amnestic MCI and 13 age- and sex-matched healthy control subjects participated in the study. The functional magnetic resonance (MR) imaging tasks were simplified 4 × 4-grid number placement puzzles that were divided into a simple task (using the row rule or the column rule to solve the puzzle) and a complex task (using both the row and column rules to solve the puzzle). Behavioral results and functional imaging results between the healthy control group and the amnestic MCI group were analyzed. The accuracy for the complex task in the healthy control group was significantly higher than that in the amnestic MCI group (P < .05). The healthy control group exhibited a deactivated BOLD signal intensity (SI) change in the bilateral PCC and adjacent precuneus regions during the complex task, whereas the amnestic MCI group showed activation. The positive linear correlations between the BOLD SI change in bilateral PCC and adjacent precuneus regions and in bilateral hippocampi in the amnestic MCI group were significant (P < .001), while in the healthy control group, they were not (P ≥ .23). These findings suggest that an altered BOLD response in amnestic MCI patients during complex tasks might be related to a decline in problem-solving ability and to memory impairment and, thus, may indicate a compensatory response to memory impairment. RSNA, 2011

  15. Neuronal correlates of theory of mind and empathy: a functional magnetic resonance imaging study in a nonverbal task.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Völlm, Birgit A; Taylor, Alexander N W; Richardson, Paul; Corcoran, Rhiannon; Stirling, John; McKie, Shane; Deakin, John F W; Elliott, Rebecca

    2006-01-01

    Theory of Mind (ToM), the ability to attribute mental states to others, and empathy, the ability to infer emotional experiences, are important processes in social cognition. Brain imaging studies in healthy subjects have described a brain system involving medial prefrontal cortex, superior temporal sulcus and temporal pole in ToM processing. Studies investigating networks associated with empathic responding also suggest involvement of temporal and frontal lobe regions. In this fMRI study, we used a cartoon task derived from Sarfati et al. (1997) [Sarfati, Y., Hardy-Bayle, M.C., Besche, C., Widlocher, D. 1997. Attribution of intentions to others in people with schizophrenia: a non-verbal exploration with comic strips. Schizophrenia Research 25, 199-209.]with both ToM and empathy stimuli in order to allow comparison of brain activations in these two processes. Results of 13 right-handed, healthy, male volunteers were included. Functional images were acquired using a 1.5 T Phillips Gyroscan. Our results confirmed that ToM and empathy stimuli are associated with overlapping but distinct neuronal networks. Common areas of activation included the medial prefrontal cortex, temporoparietal junction and temporal poles. Compared to the empathy condition, ToM stimuli revealed increased activations in lateral orbitofrontal cortex, middle frontal gyrus, cuneus and superior temporal gyrus. Empathy, on the other hand, was associated with enhanced activations of paracingulate, anterior and posterior cingulate and amygdala. We therefore suggest that ToM and empathy both rely on networks associated with making inferences about mental states of others. However, empathic responding requires the additional recruitment of networks involved in emotional processing. These results have implications for our understanding of disorders characterized by impairments of social cognition, such as autism and psychopathy.

  16. Information Memory Processing and Retrieval: The Use of Information Theory to Study Primacy and Recency Characteristics of Ninth Grade Science Students Processing Learning Tasks.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dunlop, David L.

    Reported is another study related to the Project on an Information Memory Model. This study involved using information theory to investigate the concepts of primacy and recency as they were exhibited by ninth-grade science students while processing a biological sorting problem and an immediate, abstract recall task. Two hundred randomly selected…

  17. The performance of children prenatally exposed to HIV on the A-not-B Task in Kilifi, Kenya : A preliminary study

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Abubakar, A.; Holding, P.; van Baar, A.L.; Newton, C.R.J.C.; van de Vijver, F.J.R.; Espy, K.A.

    2013-01-01

    The aim of the study was to investigate early executive functioning in young children from 6–35 months of age. The study involved 319 randomly selected children from the community, 17 HIV exposed but uninfected children and 31 HIV infected ARV-naive children. A variation of the A-not-B task was

  18. Inhibitory control and visuo-spatial reversibility in Piaget’s seminal number conservation task: A high-density ERP study.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Gregoire eBorst

    2013-12-01

    Full Text Available The present high-density ERP study on 13 adults aimed to determine whether number conservation relies on the ability to inhibit the overlearned length-equals-number strategy and then imagine the shortening of the row that was lengthened. Participants performed the number-conservation task and, after the EEG session, the mental imagery task. In the number-conservation task, first two rows with the same number of tokens and the same length were presented on a computer screen (COV condition and then, the tokens in one of the two rows were spread apart (INT condition. Participants were instructed to determine whether the two rows had an identical number of tokens. In the mental imagery task, two rows with different lengths but the same number of tokens were presented and participants were instructed to imagine the tokens in the longer row aligning with the tokens in the shorter row. In the number-conservation task, we found that the amplitudes of the centro-parietal N2 and fronto-central P3 were higher in the INT than in the COV conditions. In addition, the differences in response times between the two conditions were correlated with the differences in the amplitudes of the fronto-central P3. In light of previous results reported on the number-conservation task in adults, the present results suggest that inhibition might be necessary to succeed the number-conservation task in adults even when the transformation of the length of one of the row is displayed. Finally, we also reported correlations between the speed at which participants could imagine the shortening of one of the row in the mental imagery task, the speed at which participants could determine that the two rows had the same number of tokens after the tokens in one of the row were spread apart and the latency of the late positive parietal component in the number-conservation task. Therefore, performing the number-conservation task might involve mental transformation processes in adults.

  19. Risk Assessment and Optimization for New or Novel Processes: Combining task analysis with 4D process simulation-framework and case study.

    OpenAIRE

    Leva, Maria Chiara; Gerbec, Marko; Balfe, Nora; Demichela, Micaela

    2015-01-01

    This paper describes work undertaken as part of the TOSCA project to develop approaches in-tegrating and enhancing safety, quality and productivity. The work reported here combines two existing ap-proaches: task analysis and 4D process simulation to model tasks in a 3D environment, thus creating a 4D model. The 4D model is next used for safety analysis (e.g., HAZOP a structured Hazid study) and optimiza-tion (e.g., Pareto type). The approach is demonstrated on an industrial case study involvi...

  20. Modulation of the attentional span by foveal and parafoveal task load: An ERP study using attentional probes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kornrumpf, Benthe; Sommer, Werner

    2015-09-01

    Due to capacity limitation, visual attention must be focused to a limited region of the visual field. Nevertheless, it is assumed that the size of that region may vary with task demands. We aimed to obtain direct evidence for the modulation of visuospatial attention as a function of foveal and parafoveal task load. Participants were required to fixate the center word of word triplets. In separate task blocks, either just the fixated word or both the fixated and the parafoveal word to the right should be semantically classified. The spatiotemporal distribution of attention was assessed with task-irrelevant probes flashed briefly at center or parafoveal positions, during or in between word presentation trials. The N1 component of the ERP elicited by intertrial probes at possible target positions increased with task demands within a block. These results suggest the recruitment of additional attentional resources rather than a redistribution of a fixed resource pool, which persists across trials. © 2015 Society for Psychophysiological Research.

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