Measurement of Attentional Capacity Load Using Dual-Task Performance Operating Curves.
Interim rept. 1 Jun-19 Aug 77,
AIR FORCE HUMAN RESOURCES LAB BROOKS AFB TEX
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A fixed attentional capacity theory of human attentional limitations was tested to determine its ability to predict the combination of tasks pilots could perform together without noticeable decrements. Three cognitive tasks and a simulated formation flying task were performed singly and in pairs. Performance operating curves generated by dual-task performance on pairs of the cognitive tasks were estimated successfully. Their equivalent attentional demands were found. The flying task had a very small, but measurable attentional demand, as determined from dual-task performance. Performance on the cognitive tasks that were performed together with the flying task was consistent with the capacity theory. However, the small attentional demand needed to perform the flying task prevented a strong test of the theory. Author