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Gamma power as an index of sustained attention in simulated vigilance tasks

Dr. Taylor Curley
Air Force Research Laboratory
Dr. Lorraine Borghetti
Air Force Research Labratory ~ 711 HPW/RHWOH
Dr. Megan Brianne Morris
Air Force Research Laboratory

Performance on the psychomotor vigilance test (PVT; Dinges and Powell, 1985)—a common index of sustained attention—is affected by the opposing forces of fatigue and sustained effort, where reaction times and error rates typically increase across trials and are sometimes offset by additional efforts deployed toward the end of the task (i.e., an “end-spurt”; c.f. Bergum and Klein, 1961). In ACT-R (Adaptive Control of Thought-Rational; Anderson et al., 2004), these influences on task performance have been modeled as latent variables that are inferred from performance (e.g., Jongman, 1998; Veksler and Gunzelmann, 2018) without connections to directly observable variables. We propose the use of frontal gamma (γ) spectral power as a direct measure of vigilant effort and demonstrate its efficacy in modeling performance on the PVT in both the aggregate and in individuals.




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Cite this as:

Curley, T., Borghetti, L., & Morris, M. (2022, July). Gamma power as an index of sustained attention in simulated vigilance tasks. Abstract published at In-Person MathPsych/ICCM 2022. Via