Cyrus K Foroughi

Cyrus K Foroughi
United States Naval Research Laboratory | NRL

PhD, AEP

About

40
Publications
10,917
Reads
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472
Citations
Additional affiliations
May 2013 - present
George Mason University
Position
  • GRA

Publications

Publications (40)
Article
Full-text available
Although a large body of research shows that general cognitive ability is heritable and stable in young adults, there is recent evidence that fluid intelligence can be heightened with cognitive training. Many researchers, however, have questioned the methodology of the cognitive-training studies reporting improvements in fluid intelligence: specifi...
Article
Previous research suggests that being interrupted while reading a text does not disrupt the later recognition or recall of information from that text. This research is used as support for Ericsson and Kintsch's (1995) long-term working memory (LT-WM) theory, which posits that disruptions while reading (e.g., interruptions) do not impair subsequent...
Article
This reply is in response to Delaney and Ericsson (2016), who argue that the results of our recent research (Foroughi, Werner, Barragán, & Boehm-Davis, 2015) can be explained by Ericsson and Kintsch’s (1995) long-term working memory (LTWM) theory. Our original work was designed to test the prediction made by LTWM theory that interruptions of up to...
Article
Researchers have suggested that video games can be used to measure cognitive abilities (e.g., Boot, 2015). To that end, we wanted to test the feasibility of developing a measure of fluid intelligence within a commercially-available video game. We created a 15 chamber (i.e., problems to be solved) test called the “Portal 2 Test Battery” using the Pu...
Article
Previous research has shown that there is a time cost (i.e., a resumption lag) associated with resuming a task following an interruption and that the longer the duration of the interruption, the greater the time cost (i.e., resumption lag increases as interruption duration increases). The memory-for-goals model (Altmann & Trafton, 2002) suggests th...
Article
Examining individual differences in pupil size and pupillary dynamics have revealed important insights into the nature of individual differences in cognitive abilities like working memory capacity, long‐term memory, attention control, and fluid intelligence. These findings are often tied to the locus coeruleus‐norepinephrine (LC‐NE) system, as this...
Conference Paper
The pupil dilation of fifteen air traffic control students was recorded as they completed the mental counters working memory task. Standard deviation of pupil dilation for each of the 32 trials was computed for each individual and modeled as a growth curve. Pupil dilation variability fluctuated over time in a nonmonotonic manner. Interestingly, the...
Article
Full-text available
Spatial ability has long been considered an important attribute when identifying military aviators. This paper examines the Direction Orientation Task (DOT), which is currently used by the US military to assess spatial ability in aviation applicants. Several limitations of the test, such as a limited number of trials and the availability of practic...
Article
Full-text available
Objective Assess performance, trust, and visual attention during the monitoring of a near-perfect automated system. Background Research rarely attempts to assess performance, trust, and visual attention in near-perfect automated systems even though they will be relied on in high-stakes environments. Methods Seventy-three participants completed a...
Chapter
Full-text available
One hundred and nineteen military aviators were tasked with developing route plans for directing multiple Unmanned Aerial Vehicles to search for targets with different values and probabilities of being found. Target icon visualizations were manipulated on the planning display’s map, such that half the trials included either enhanced or simple icons...
Article
Spatial abilities are often predictive of occupational success. Specifically, they are thought to play a role in aviator success and thus, are evaluated in Naval and Air Force aviation selection. However, the selection process only includes a single assessment of spatial ability which recent findings have called into question its validity. The crea...
Article
Spatial ability has been identified as one of the skills needed to be a pilot. However, the test used by the military to measure this ability, the Direction Orientation Task (DOT), has a number of problems. The DOT2, was developed to address issues such as a ceiling effect and the limited number of possible trials. The initial DOT2 validation was d...
Article
This study sought to characterize individual differences in pupillary dilations during a simple cognitive task. Eighty-four Navy and Marine Corps student pilots performed a digit memory recall test while their pupillary data were recorded. Results showed that peak pupil sizes significantly increased with difficulty of the memory task, however varia...
Chapter
The Direction Orientation Task (DOT) was developed as a test of spatial ability and processing speed. It is used by several US military services as part of their respective cognitive selection batteries for military aviators. Previous attempts to improve the task exposed an additional concern: specifically, the majority of participants were applyin...
Chapter
We examined performance for a university population and military population in the Simulated Multiple Asset Routing Testbed (SMART). SMART is a testbed designed to be similar to the types of tasks future unmanned vehicle operators will perform. Specifically, participants were required to optimize route selections for unmanned aerial vehicles. Their...
Article
Full-text available
This study sought to improve and extend previously conducted research that demonstrated the ability to capture within-task learning by measuring changes in an individual’s peak pupil size across a task. That research had two limitations that needed to be addressed: the use of pixels (an unstandardized pupil size measurement unit) as the primary met...
Article
Military branches rely on selection and placement testing to help identify individuals who will be well-suited for jobs that they likely have little exposure to or experience with. The goal for this research was to update the Direction Orientation Task (DOT), which is used by both the United States Navy and Air Force as part of their aviation selec...
Article
Attrition rates due to poor academic performance are particularly high for the Navy’s air traffic control training program. The school relies on scores from the Armed Services Vocational Aptitude Battery (ASVAB) for its selection criteria which do not seem to be sufficient by themselves in predicting who will succeed in training. We hypothesized th...
Article
With the proliferation of automated tasks, software, and systems, humans are moving from an active participant in the function of a task to a passive monitor of an automated system that is completing that task. Unfortunately, humans are not well-suited for monitoring roles and there is a need to better understand the factors involved when humans su...
Article
Pupil diameter (PD) has been used to track changes in mental effort across a broad range of cognitive tasks for over 60 years. PD is often measured from remote eye tracking systems, which all have the same limitation: the lack of a known reference value to convert the pixels captured within the systems to millimeters. Researchers frequently normali...
Article
The goal for this research was to determine how individuals perform and allocate their visual attention when monitoring multiple automated displays that differ in automation reliability. Ninety-six participants completed a simulated supervisory control task where each automated display had a different level of reliability (viz., 70%, 85%, and 95%)....
Article
The present study is an initial investigation of complex decision making performance. Specifically, this work investigated how individuals make decisions involving risk and uncertainty within a spatially focused route planning task involving multiple simulated unmanned vehicles and objectives. Forty-three participants were instructed to create twen...
Article
Full-text available
The recent availability of low cost of eye tracking hardware provides researchers a fruitful opportunity to collect additional human subject data for under $700. This current study sought to investigate whether low-cost eye tracking is capable of replicating a large effect showing a relationship between resting pupil size and working memory capacit...
Article
Video games are extremely popular and many human factors practitioners are working on video game related research. The goals for this panel are 1) to discuss some of the human factors research being conducted in different domains, 2) to highlight some of the techniques that are and are not commonly used to do this research, 3) to highlight how indi...
Article
Full-text available
The relationship between increased pupil diameter and effort has been well established within the Psychology literature since the 1960s. The ability to detect an individuals’ effort is important, particularly in tasks where there are extended periods of monitoring, and limited ways to directly measure performance. The current study sought to invest...
Article
Full-text available
Computer network defense analysts engage a difficult, though critical, task in cyber defense. Anecdotally, these operators complain of frequent task interruptions while they are performing their duties. The goal for the current study was to investigate the effect of a commonly reported interruption, answering email, on accuracy and completion times...
Article
Pupillometry is commonly used in research to determine how much mental effort an individual is exerting while completing tasks. Traditionally, larger pupils are associated with increased mental effort when completing more difficult tasks. However, little research has investigated how pupils change as individuals learn a new task. In theory, as one...
Conference Paper
Full-text available
Automation is fundamentally shifting the tasks that many humans perform. Unmanned aerial vehicles, which originally had stick and rudder control, now rely on waypoint based navigation. The future operators of these systems are increasingly becoming supervisors of automated systems and their primary role is shifting to simply monitoring those system...
Conference Paper
Full-text available
This paper presents data loss figures from three experiments, varying in length and visual complexity, in which low-cost eye tracking data were collected. Analysis of data from the first two experiments revealed higher levels of data loss in the visually complex task environment and that task duration did not appear to impact data loss. Results fro...
Conference Paper
Full-text available
Individuals adapt to tasks as they repeatedly practice them resulting in increased overall performance. Historically, time and accuracy are two metrics used to measure these adaptations. Here we show preliminary evidence that changes in pupil dilation may be able to capture within-task learning changes. A group of enlisted Sailors and Marines compl...
Article
The objectives of this research were to (1) explore whether goal-activation models of procedurally based interrupted task performance can be applied to content production, and if not, (2) develop a new theoretical account, and (3) provide support for that theory. Experiment 1 found that interruptions during planning resulted in less developed plans...
Article
Although there is an abundance of research showing how interruptions disrupt performance, there is little evidence regarding whether individuals believe they are personally affected by interruptions. The goal for this research was to determine whether individuals are sensitive to changes in performance when interrupted. Thirty-two participants wrot...
Article
Errors following interruptions are problematic in many environments. Previous interruption research has focused on mitigation methods (e.g., alerts, cues) to reduce the deleterious effects of interruptions. However, little research has examined whether any individual difference measures can be used to predict how many errors individuals are likely...
Article
Long-term working memory (LT-WM; Ericsson and Kintsch, 1995) theory claims that the "transient portion of working memory is not necessary for continued comprehension" (pp. 225-226) and that "reading can be completely disrupted for over 30. s with no observable impairment of subsequent text comprehension" (p. 232). Follow-up research testing claims...
Article
Full-text available
The authors determine whether transcranial direct current stimulation (tDCS) can reduce resumption time when an ongoing task is interrupted. Interruptions are common and disruptive. Working memory capacity has been shown to predict resumption lag (i.e., time to successfully resume a task after interruption). Given that tDCS applied to brain areas a...
Article
Full-text available
Many studies have found gender differences in mental rotation ability in young adults when completing mental rotation tests on paper and pencil (e.g., Peters et al., 1995; Vandenberg & Kuse, 1978). Two previous studies have been unable to replicate these findings when testing mental rotation ability inside of a virtual environment (Parsons et al.,...
Article
The aim of this study was to determine if interruptions affect the quality of work. Interruptions are commonplace at home and in the office. Previous research in this area has traditionally involved time and errors as the primary measures of disruption. Little is known about the effect interruptions have on quality of work. Fifty-four students outl...
Article
Interruptions have become a persistent annoyance in our lives; they reduce performance in many domains. Traditional interruption research uses time and errors as measures of disruption. However, in creative tasks, time and errors may not be suitable measures of disruption. This study investigates how interruptions affect content production in a cre...
Article
Full-text available
Interruptions to ongoing mental activities are omnipresent in our modern digital world, but the brain networks involved in interrupted performance are not known, nor have the activation of those networks been modulated. Errors following interruptions reflect failures in spatial memory, whose maintenance is supported by a brain network including the...

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