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This is a part-answer to your question and it doesn't come from occupational psychology, but from expertise research. Findings from Expertise Research In their seminal paper on the role of deliberate practice for the acquisition of expert performance, Ericsson et al. (1993) report a number of constraints that play a role in the acquisition of expert ...


16

As part of my PhD within the field of Human-Computer Interaction (HCI), one of the things I am trying to support the user in is multitasking. This might be relevant for you since interruptions and multitasking are highly interlinked. I'll refer you to some of the key papers I encountered during my background research, including some on the effects of ...


15

The widely quoted figure of "10% at a time" is actually overestimating simultaneous brain activity by up to an order of magnitude. As demonstrated by Lennie 2003 (Current Biology), the number of neurons that can be substantially active concurrently is possibly as small as 1% of the brain's neurons, due to the high metabolic cost of spiking. Generally, ...


8

Increasing Concentration A method that is geared espeacially towards reading scientific texts is SQ3R. SQ3R is short for survey, question, read, recite and review. So instead of "just reading" a text, one is supposed to survey it first to grasp the basic outline by reading the abstract, introduction or table of contents formulate questions as to what it ...


8

How much sleep is needed for peak cognitive performance. If some were for >example wake up one morning at 12:30 pm would a sleeping pill help obtain >better sleep required for that performance the next morning at 08:00 am ? It depends on what pharmacotherapies - per the clinical judgement of their treating physician - one may have consumed. Conceptually, we ...


7

As mentioned in a recent study by Thompson et al. (2012), there are two perspectives which account for the effects of background music on reading comprehension specifically (but as I argue later, these seem generalizable): the Cognitive-Capacity hypothesis and the Arousal-Mood hypothesis. In short, the potential cost of background music listening for ...


7

Is there a name for the phenomena of not putting effort into study because of fear of failure which in turn results in actual failure? Yes, this is called self-handicapping. Self-handicapping is the process by which people avoid effort in the hopes of keeping potential failure from hurting self-esteem. What causes this? The main and most ...


7

A caveat: "productivity" is not a term used much by cognitive science, so I'll talk about cognition instead. It's not necessarily the same thing, but it's more of an answered question. And as a general issue: any time a question has "more" in it, the real question is "more than what?" More productive early in the morning than later in the morning? More ...


6

Alcohol consumption causes deficits in motor coordination by affecting the cerebellum, which is the main area involved in regulating finer adjustments in movement and motor learning. From Belmeguenai et. al (2008): It has previously been shown that ethanol modulates inhibitory transmission in the cerebellum and affects synaptic transmission and plasticity ...


6

An alert of a follow up paper ON THE DISTRIBUTION OF JOB PERFORMANCE: THE ROLE OF MEASUREMENT CHARACTERISTICS IN OBSERVED DEPARTURES FROM NORMALITY and subsequent search brought me to this discussion. I don't have full access to these articles unfortunately. Of the two questions that posed, no, I wouldn't expect to find a normal distribution and no, I ...


6

From the Wall Street Journal: Office workers are interrupted—or self-interrupt—roughly every three minutes, academic studies have found, with numerous distractions coming in both digital and human forms. Once thrown off track, it can take some 23 minutes for a worker to return to the original task, says Gloria Mark, a professor of informatics at the ...


6

I've discussed a lot of this recently on my answer to this question: Are there recent theories on physiognomy? In summary, yes. Can't remember which of the tons I referenced mentioned well-being, but if you run a search function (Ctrl F, or ⌘F if you don't like good computers) on the text of the freely available articles I provided hyperlinks for, I ...


6

Far from being one single organ performing a single homogeneous function, the brain is actually several lobes, and each lobe is like a separate organ performing a dozen functions. Putting it in another way, the brain is not like a "thinking machine", it is more like a collection of computers, instrument panels of an aircraft, radars and sonars of a submarine,...


5

I would like to add a bit of terminology to @what's answer. Of course memory is a pretty big topic with different and sometimes conflicting theories and I would not consider myself an expert. Having this said, the distinction between Long Term Memory (LTM) and Working Memory is widely used, so I will use it, too. The problem that you describe in your ...


5

Our university has a public grade distribution database, so I did a really quick analysis on some historical data to see if there was any support for this idea. To my surprise, it appears that there might be. But, my analysis is very limited. I downloaded the grade distributions for all intro psychology and intro computer science classes from 2010-2014. ...


5

Ahh yes, The Secret. I'd recommend starting with Wikipedia for a critical view of the "law of attraction" and the book as a whole. The former page has some particularly good excerpts to offer (emphasis added; hyperlinks not preserved, though I'd appreciate help editing them back in): Skeptical Inquirer magazine criticized the lack of ...


5

Andrew Gelman has blogged and published about the "hot hand" phenomenon from a statistical perspective. His statistical perspective is probably fairly authoritative, and his psychological perspective, at least in being very inclusive, not implausible. His basic idea is the following: Previous wins are very unlikely to have no effect on future performance. ...


5

This section from the Wikipedia page on Neuroplasticity indicates (emphasis mine) Reviews of MRI studies on individuals with ADHD suggest that the long-term treatment of attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) with stimulants, such as amphetamine or methylphenidate, decreases abnormalities in brain structure and function found in subjects ...


5

Yes. In one famous experiment,a college basketball team was divided into three groups. Group 1 was supposed to show up to practice shooting baskets for a week on a daily basis. Group 2 was asked to "think about" practicing shooting baskets during the alloted time, without showing up. Group 3 was asked to "forget about" basketball for the week. After the ...


5

First, it is important to disambiguate between concurrent multitasking and sequential multitasking (Salvucci et al, 2009). In a recent publication I present a short overview on related work of both (Jeuris and Bardram, 2016): During concurrent multitasking cognitive resources have to be divided across several competing parallel tasks, such as driving ...


5

Marks and Nesse investigated evolutionary causes of anxiety disorders and reported about embarrassment in particular: Social threats evoke responses that promote group acceptance, for example, submission to dominants and to norms of dress, mien, odor, speech, customs, beliefs. This prevents dangerous extrusion from the group. Mild shyness and ...


4

Masturbation in men or women does not negatively affect cognitive processes As I pointed out in another question in Health.SE, masturbation was a diagnosable psychological condition until DSM II in 1968 (Ley, 2014), and the American Medical Association consensually declared masturbation as normal in 1972 (Planned Parenthood Federation of America, 2003). ...


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