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Although prior investigations have revealed cognitive abilities to be important predictors of multitasking behavior, few investigations have been conducted on the relation between executive functions (EFs) and multitasking behavior. The current study examines the underlying cognitive constructs associated with the concept of multitasking behavior. A sample of 202 young adults completed a battery of EFs (shifting, updating, and inhibition), three working memory capacity (WMC) tests, three relational integration tests, two divided attention tests, and a multitasking scenario (Simultaneous Capacity). First, in direct replication attempts, the results replicated the multitasking behavior model (Bühner, König, Pick, & Krumm, 2006) and partially replicated the three-factor and nested factors EFs models (Friedman et al., 2016). Second, hierarchical multiple regression analyses and relative weight analyses revealed that updating, inhibition, relational integration, and divided attention had strong contributions in explaining multitasking behavior variance, whereas shifting and WMC did not show any explanatory power beyond these constructs. Finally, using structural equation modeling, we found that the general EF ability (common EF) representing variance common to shifting, updating, and inhibition highly overlapped with multitasking behavior. Our results are of value not only to shed light on the relevant cognitive correlates of multitasking behavior but also to position multitasking behavior in an established framework of cognitive abilities.
This article was published in the following journal.
This study aimed to verify whether children with dyslexia have difficulties in executive functions (shifting, working memory, inhibition).
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A set of cognitive functions that controls complex, goal-directed thought and behavior. Executive function involves multiple domains, such as CONCEPT FORMATION, goal management, cognitive flexibility, INHIBITION control, and WORKING MEMORY. Impaired executive function is seen in a range of disorders, e.g., SCHIZOPHRENIA; and ADHD.
An acquired organic mental disorder with loss of intellectual abilities of sufficient severity to interfere with social or occupational functioning. The dysfunction is multifaceted and involves memory, behavior, personality, judgment, attention, spatial relations, language, abstract thought, and other executive functions. The intellectual decline is usually progressive, and initially spares the level of consciousness.
A neuropsychological test designed to assess different memory functions. It may incorporate an optional cognitive exam (Brief Cognitive Status Exam) that helps to assess memory related cognitive function.
Simultaneous task performance, or switching between tasks in a concentrated period of time.
Memory related to spatial information.