Maintaining situational awareness: The role of visual attention

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Chaparro, Alex
Groff, Loren
Tabor, K.
Sifrit, Kathy J.
Gugerty, L.J.

Chaparro, A., Groff, L., Tabor, K., Sifrit, K.J., & Gugerty, L.J. (1999). Maintaining situational awareness: The role of visual attention. Presented at the 43rd Annual Meeting of the Human Factors and Ergonomics Society, Houston, Texas, September 27-October 1, 1999.


This study examined the relationship between the UFOV (R) test (Ball, et al. 1993), and measures of situational awareness (SA) for the purpose of identifying those components of visual attention that am most important in maintaining SA. Situational awareness was assessed using a PC based driving simulator that tests a participant's ability to detect and respond to hazardous situations, as well as their knowledge of the locations of other cars. Subtests 2 and 3 of the UFOV test, which assess a participants divided and selective attention ability, were found to be significantly correlated with a participant's ability to recognize hazards and recall the location of other cars. The results suggest that the divided and selective attention tasks of the UFOV (R) test measure abilities that contribute significantly to a person's capacity to maintain situational awareness.

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