The influence of fatigue and mood on cognitive failures

Chaney, Stephen and Fogarty, Gerard J. (2009) The influence of fatigue and mood on cognitive failures. In: 44th Australian Psychological Society Annual Conference (APS 2009), 30 Sep-4 Oct 2009, Darwin, Australia.


Fatigue is a variable commonly linked with cognitive failures and there is a strong body of empirical evidence substantiating the relationship. There is also evidence that the construct of fatigue can itself be defined more precisely in terms of acuteness, chronicity, and recovery time, which raises the question as to which of these dimensions of fatigue is most responsible for the relationship with cognitive failures. The present study examined this question by administering self-report measures of fatigue and cognitive failure to a group of 170 university students (143 females). A measure of mood states was also administered to test possible pathways through which fatigue variables influenced cognitive failures. Results indicated that three aspects of fatigue could be recovered through factor analysis and that scales formed from these moderately correlated factors were equally related to cognitive failures. Mediation analyses showed that a mood variable labelled as tension/confusion partially mediated the effect of fatigue on cognitive failures. These results suggest that all three aspects of fatigue can lead to adverse mood states, which in turn create conditions favourable to memory failures and attentional lapses. The demonstration of these pathways highlights ways of managing the effects of fatigue, other than through the introduction of direct fatigue counter measures.

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Item Type: Conference or Workshop Item (Commonwealth Reporting Category E) (Paper)
Refereed: Yes
Item Status: Live Archive
Additional Information: This publication is copyright. It may be reproduced in whole or in part for the purposes of study, research, or review, but is subject to the inclusion of an acknowledgment of the source.
Faculty / Department / School: Historic - Faculty of Sciences - Department of Psychology
Date Deposited: 24 Jun 2010 05:01
Last Modified: 18 Dec 2014 05:57
Uncontrolled Keywords: cognitive failures; errors; mistakes; human error
Fields of Research : 17 Psychology and Cognitive Sciences > 1701 Psychology > 170112 Sensory Processes, Perception and Performance
17 Psychology and Cognitive Sciences > 1702 Cognitive Sciences > 170202 Decision Making
17 Psychology and Cognitive Sciences > 1701 Psychology > 170109 Personality, Abilities and Assessment
Socio-Economic Objective: E Expanding Knowledge > 97 Expanding Knowledge > 970117 Expanding Knowledge in Psychology and Cognitive Sciences

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