Initial results from a study of the effects of meditation on multitasking performance

David M. Levy, Jacob O. Wobbrock, Alfred W. Kaszniak, Marilyn Ostergren

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contribution

6 Scopus citations

Abstract

This paper reports initial results from a study exploring whether training in meditation or relaxation can improve office workers' ability to multitask on a computer more effectively and/or with less stress. Human resource (HR) personnel were given 8 weeks of training in either mindfulness meditation or body relaxation techniques, and were given a stressful multitasking test both before and after training. (A third group, a control group, received no intervention during the 8-week period but was tested both before and after this period.) Results indicate that overall task time and errors did not differ significantly among the three groups. However, the meditation group reported lower levels of stress and showed better memory for the tasks they had performed; they also switched tasks less often and remained focused on tasks longer.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationCHI EA 2011 - 29th Annual CHI Conference on Human Factors in Computing Systems, Conference Proceedings and Extended Abstracts
Pages2011-2016
Number of pages6
DOIs
StatePublished - Jun 8 2011
Event29th Annual CHI Conference on Human Factors in Computing Systems, CHI 2011 - Vancouver, BC, Canada
Duration: May 7 2011May 12 2011

Publication series

NameConference on Human Factors in Computing Systems - Proceedings

Other

Other29th Annual CHI Conference on Human Factors in Computing Systems, CHI 2011
CountryCanada
CityVancouver, BC
Period5/7/115/12/11

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Keywords

  • Attention training
  • Human attention
  • Information overload
  • Knowledge workers
  • Meditation
  • Multitasking
  • Stress

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Software
  • Human-Computer Interaction
  • Computer Graphics and Computer-Aided Design

Cite this

Levy, D. M., Wobbrock, J. O., Kaszniak, A. W., & Ostergren, M. (2011). Initial results from a study of the effects of meditation on multitasking performance. In CHI EA 2011 - 29th Annual CHI Conference on Human Factors in Computing Systems, Conference Proceedings and Extended Abstracts (pp. 2011-2016). (Conference on Human Factors in Computing Systems - Proceedings). https://doi.org/10.1145/1979742.1979862