Building a transdisciplinary expert consensus on the neurocognitive drivers of performance under pressure: An international Delphi study

Albertella, L. and Kirkham, R. and Adler, A. B. and Crampton, J. and Drummond, S. P. A. and Fogarty, G. J. and Gross, J. J. and Zaichkowsky, L. and International Cognitive Fitness Delphi Consortium, . and Aidman, E. and Yucel, M. (2021) Building a transdisciplinary expert consensus on the neurocognitive drivers of performance under pressure: An international Delphi study. In: Defence Human Sciences Symposium 2021, 28 Nov - 1 Dec 2021, Melbourne, Australia.


Abstract

Background: The ability to sustain optimal performance under pressure is critical across many occupations, including the military, first responders, and competitive sports. While cognitive and broader psychological factors are known to play a key role in optimal performance under pressure, how common these key performance factors are across occupations or even across application domains, remains unclear. Aim: To integrate existing knowledge in the performance field in the form of a transdisciplinary expert consensus on the cognitive mechanisms that underlie optimal performance under pressure. Method: International experts were recruited from four disciplines (i. Defence; ii. Competitive Sports; iii. Civilian High-stakes; and iv. Applied Cognition). They were asked to evaluate a set of constructs that included all key dimensions of cognitive functioning from the neuroscience-driven Research Domain Criteria (RDoC) framework, as well as several additional constructs that were deemed important by an expert advisory group but not covered by RDoC. Consensus was sought within each discipline using a 4-panel Delphi design. Across 3 successive rounds, experts rated (and re-rated based on emerging group data) the importance of RDoC-derived and expert-suggested constructs for optimal performance under pressure until all constructs reached consensus for inclusion or elimination. Constructs included by consensus were finally ranked for their relative importance to the four disciplines by each respective Delphi panel. Results: Sixty-eight experts completed the first Delphi round, with 94% of experts retained by the end of the Delphi process (9-months later, the point at which consensus was reached for all panels). Seven of the ten constructs that reached consensus across all four panels came from the Cognitive Systems domain including: 1) Attention; 2) Cognitive Control—Goal Selection, Updating, Representation & Maintenance; 3) Cognitive Control—Performance Monitoring; 4) Cognitive Control—Response Selection & Inhibition/Suppression; 5) Working memory—Flexible Updating; 6) Working memory—Active Maintenance; 7) Working memory—Interference Control. Other constructs that reached consensus across all panels came from Social Processes (i.e., Self-knowledge), Arousal and Regulatory Systems (i.e., Arousal), and expert suggestions (i.e., Shifting). Conclusions: There is clear transdisciplinary consensus on core dimensions of cognitive functioning that underpin optimal performance. Our results identify a set of neuroscience-informed constructs, validated through multi-panel Delphi consensus, that are common across human performance applications. This expert consensus is critical to standardising cognitive assessment – both for research and practical applications. It can also begin to inform more targeted and mechanism-sensitive interventions in the broader field of human performance optimisation.


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Item Type: Conference or Workshop Item (Commonwealth Reporting Category E) (Paper)
Refereed: No
Item Status: Live Archive
Additional Information: Files associated with this item cannot be displayed due to copyright restrictions.
Faculty/School / Institute/Centre: Current - Institute for Resilient Regions - Centre for Health Research (1 Apr 2020 -)
Faculty/School / Institute/Centre: Current - Institute for Resilient Regions - Centre for Health Research (1 Apr 2020 -)
Date Deposited: 21 Jun 2022 02:07
Last Modified: 24 Jun 2022 03:32
Uncontrolled Keywords: cognitive; psychological factors; military; first responders; competitive sports
Fields of Research (2020): 52 PSYCHOLOGY > 5202 Biological psychology > 520207 Social and affective neuroscience
Socio-Economic Objectives (2020): 20 HEALTH > 2099 Other health > 209999 Other health not elsewhere classified
URI: http://eprints.usq.edu.au/id/eprint/49163

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