Applied Neuropsychology of Attention: Theory, Diagnosis and by Michel Leclerq

By Michel Leclerq

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By Michel Leclerq

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Additional resources for Applied Neuropsychology of Attention: Theory, Diagnosis and Rehabilitation

Example text

You know, however, that the demand changed because there is no competition for the commodity when originally there was. It seems easier, free from fewer reified entities, to assume that at times people can do two things at once and then to devote one’s energies to trying to understand both the conditions that make this possible, and the processes underlying the performance. Proponents of a skills approach adopt this position. They concentrate on describing what people are doing when performing two tasks simultaneously and what they are learning when practicing dual tasks.

This observation is attributable to the gradual deployment of mechanisms of habituation. Furthermore, when a distractor specific to a trial becomes a target in the next, one records a significant RT increase, just as in Neill’s experiment (1977). This response slow-down reveals the residue of inhibition associated to the stimulus when the latter had the status of distractor, and which is once again demonstrated when, suddenly, it becomes a target. , 1991). In our example, RT will increase significantly when the guitar distractor appearing several times in the background, becomes the target by passing to the foreground.

121). Indeed, examples are legion: taking notes while phoning, conversing with a passenger while driving a vehicle, planning an action or solving a complex problem while walking, drinking, eating or smoking while watching TV, etc. Besides the fact that it is not easy to measure the degree of difficulty of tasks when these are performed separately, the problem is still more complex when the subject is asked to perform the same tasks, but simultaneously. Indeed, as emphasized by Eysenck and Keane (1991), the attentional resources demands when two tasks are performed simultaneously are not equal to the sum of the demands for the same tasks performed separately because ‘the necessity to perform two tasks together often introduces new demands of coordination and avoidance of interferences’ (p.

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