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Meditators’ and Non-meditators’ Sustained Attention During a Signal Detection Task: Do They Differ?

Sjöstedt, Joakim LU (2012) PSYM01 20121
Department of Psychology
Abstract
This study investigated whether meditators and non-meditators differed on the Sustained Attention to Response Task (SART). We hypothesized that the meditators would perform better than the non-meditators (fewer commission errors and faster Reaction Time (RT)) and report fewer interfering thoughts. The meditators (n = 15) and non-meditators (n = 19) filled out the Dundee Stress State Questionare (DSSQ) concerning their intrinsic and success-oriented motivation towards doing the SART after which they did the actual test. Afterwards, they filled out the thinking contents subscale from the DSSQ concerning task-related and task irrelevant interferences during the SART. The results showed that meditators and non-meditators did not significantly... (More)
This study investigated whether meditators and non-meditators differed on the Sustained Attention to Response Task (SART). We hypothesized that the meditators would perform better than the non-meditators (fewer commission errors and faster Reaction Time (RT)) and report fewer interfering thoughts. The meditators (n = 15) and non-meditators (n = 19) filled out the Dundee Stress State Questionare (DSSQ) concerning their intrinsic and success-oriented motivation towards doing the SART after which they did the actual test. Afterwards, they filled out the thinking contents subscale from the DSSQ concerning task-related and task irrelevant interferences during the SART. The results showed that meditators and non-meditators did not significantly differ on the commission errors on the SART, but did differ in RT (lower RT in meditators). The task-related part of the thinking contents form showed significant differences between the groups. Non-meditators reported more intrusive task-related thoughts than meditators. The two groups differed significantly on each of the motivation subscales with meditators being more motivated towards the test stimulus itself (intrinsic motivation), and non-meditators being more motivated towards excelling in performance (success motivation). We conclude that the SART may not discriminate between meditators and non-meditators in terms of commission errors, and that the role of sustained attention in meditation may be exaggerated. It is also plausible that sustained attention may be greater during meditation but not independently of it. (Less)
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author
Sjöstedt, Joakim LU
supervisor
organization
course
PSYM01 20121
year
type
H2 - Master's Degree (Two Years)
subject
keywords
SART, meditation, attention, sustained attention, DSSQ
language
English
id
3128385
date added to LUP
2012-10-18 10:38:16
date last changed
2012-10-18 10:38:16
@misc{3128385,
  abstract     = {This study investigated whether meditators and non-meditators differed on the Sustained Attention to Response Task (SART). We hypothesized that the meditators would perform better than the non-meditators (fewer commission errors and faster Reaction Time (RT)) and report fewer interfering thoughts. The meditators (n = 15) and non-meditators (n = 19) filled out the Dundee Stress State Questionare (DSSQ) concerning their intrinsic and success-oriented motivation towards doing the SART after which they did the actual test. Afterwards, they filled out the thinking contents subscale from the DSSQ concerning task-related and task irrelevant interferences during the SART. The results showed that meditators and non-meditators did not significantly differ on the commission errors on the SART, but did differ in RT (lower RT in meditators). The task-related part of the thinking contents form showed significant differences between the groups. Non-meditators reported more intrusive task-related thoughts than meditators. The two groups differed significantly on each of the motivation subscales with meditators being more motivated towards the test stimulus itself (intrinsic motivation), and non-meditators being more motivated towards excelling in performance (success motivation). We conclude that the SART may not discriminate between meditators and non-meditators in terms of commission errors, and that the role of sustained attention in meditation may be exaggerated. It is also plausible that sustained attention may be greater during meditation but not independently of it.},
  author       = {Sjöstedt, Joakim},
  keyword      = {SART,meditation,attention,sustained attention,DSSQ},
  language     = {eng},
  note         = {Student Paper},
  title        = {Meditators’ and Non-meditators’ Sustained Attention During a Signal Detection Task: Do They Differ?},
  year         = {2012},
}