Étude des mécanismes impliqués dans la reprise d'une tâche dynamique interrompue

Authors: Labonté, Katherine
Advisor: Vachon, François
Abstract: Empirical studies about the consequences of task interruptions and ways to reduce them have centered mostly on static situations, which remain unchanged during an interruption. In various circumstances related to work (e.g., air traffic control) or to everyday life (e.g., driving), however, individuals may face continuously evolving situations. Despite the prevalence of interruptions in such dynamic environments, performance must remain optimal, otherwise public safety may be at risk. In order to facilitate the development of solutions aimed to minimize the consequences of interruptions, it is imperative to deepen our understanding of the recovery process of a dynamically evolving task, about which current theoretical models make few propositions. Therefore, the general aim of this thesis is to study the mechanisms involved in dynamic task resumption. Across three experiments, various behavioral and ocular measures are collected as participants perform a task which continues to evolve even when an interrupting activity needs to be managed. Together, the first two studies reveal that the presentation of a warning announcing the occurrence of an interruption accelerates the subsequent recovery of the primary task, without incurring significant costs in other aspects of the task. Unlike static contexts, in which the benefits of a warning are attributed strictly to memory processes, the benefits of the alarm in a dynamic situation also seem to be due to a more efficient and less demanding visual reconstruction of the primary task context. In addition to memory and visual scanning, the third study is also interested in two functions that are potentially relevant to dynamic task resumption, namely temporal awareness and task-set reconfiguration. The results reveal that memory and temporal awareness mostly support recovery after short interruptions, while visual scanning and taskset reconfiguration assist the resumption process regardless of interruption duration. Overall, the results of the thesis allow to complement current theories by helping to further define the resumption process of a dynamically evolving task. At the applied level, this thesis shows that pre-interruption warnings represent a promising solution to facilitate interruption recovery in dynamic environments.
Document Type: Thèse de doctorat
Issue Date: 2019
Open Access Date: 15 January 2020
Permalink: http://hdl.handle.net/20.500.11794/37826
Grantor: Université Laval
Collection:Thèses et mémoires

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