Stress, Divided Attention, College Students
While previous research has extensively examined the effect of acute stress on cognitive performance, relatively little research has explored the relationship between chronic stress and cognitive performance. The current study aimed to control for current state anxiety to better isolate more chronic stress, when examining the relationship with performance on divided attention tasks. Fifty-four university undergraduates, who self-reported a wide range of perceived chronic stress (10-item Perceived Stress Scale), completed the Trail-Making Test and a dual (auditory and visual) Continuous Performance Test (CPT). Hierarchical regressions were performed to explore cognitive predictors of chronic perceived stress. After covarying for state anxiety (state portion of State-Trait Anxiety Inventory), the most statistically significant predictor (via stepwise entry) was the auditory omission error change score (dual minus single condition), which showed a medium effect size (r = .36). Results have practical safety implications, as the implementation of an efficient and inexpensive measure of self-reported stress may predict future job-related errors in high-stress professions that require divided attention.
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Master of Science (M.S.)
College of Sciences
Length of Campus-only Access
Masters Thesis (Open Access)
Petrac, Diane, "The Relationship Between Self-reported Chronic Stress And Divided Attention Performance" (2006). Electronic Theses and Dissertations, 2004-2019. 1085.