San Diego State UniversityDepartment of Psychology
Jeffrey M. Conte

        Ishizaka, K., Marshall, S. P., & Conte, J. M. (2001). Individual differences in attentional strategies in multitasking situations. Human Performance, 14, 339-358.


This study compared attentional strategies in prioritized and un-prioritized multitasking situations using individual differences in the Type A behavior pattern (TABP) as predictors.  The study, which utilized 118 undergraduate students, expanded previous studies by using a triple task situation that presented two visual tasks and one auditory task simultaneously.  One group received instructions for all tasks and their relative importance to each other for achieving a full performance score.  The other group received instructions for the visual tasks only, and no information about their relative importance was given, creating ambiguity about priorities among the tasks.  Global TABP and its subcomponents (time urgency, achievement strivings, impatience/irritability, polychronicity) were utilized as predictors of task performance.  Significant correlations were found between the TABP subcomponents and different performance indices, but such a relationship was not found between global TABP and performance.  Applied implications of these findings and directions for the future research are discussed.  (Copyright 2001, Lawrence Erlbaum Associates, Inc.).