A wandering mind cannot resolve conflicts in displayed information

Heesun Choi, Chang S. Nam, Jing Feng

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contribution

2 Scopus citations

Abstract

Human minds often wander around while performing a task. When the mind wanders, attention drifts away from task-relevant perceptual information, leading to deteriorated performance on the task at hand. The current study aims to examine how mind-wandering is associated with different aspects of attentional functions that are critical for perceptual processing of displayed information. Participants completed the Attention Network Task that assessed efficiencies of alerting, orienting, and executive functions of attention. During this task, participants reported their state of mind (focusing on the task or mindwandering). The results showed that mind-wandering was particularly associated with impairments on executive function, which suggests that an ability to resolve conflicts in displayed information can be impaired when a mind wanders. Our findings suggest that, in work environment where mind-wandering is more likely to occur, tasks requiring conflict resolution in displayed information may be significantly impacted. Mechanisms of mind-wandering and implications in practical settings were discussed.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publication2015 International Annual Meeting of the Human Factors and Ergonomics Society, HFES 2015
PublisherHuman Factors an Ergonomics Society Inc.
Pages1397-1401
Number of pages5
ISBN (Electronic)9780945289470
DOIs
StatePublished - 2015
Event59th International Annual Meeting of the Human Factors and Ergonomics Society, HFES 2014 - Los Angeles, United States
Duration: Oct 26 2015Oct 30 2015

Publication series

NameProceedings of the Human Factors and Ergonomics Society
Volume2015-January
ISSN (Print)1071-1813

Conference

Conference59th International Annual Meeting of the Human Factors and Ergonomics Society, HFES 2014
CountryUnited States
CityLos Angeles
Period10/26/1510/30/15

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