Emphasis Change as a Training Protocol for High-Demand Tasks
Emphasis change is a training protocol under which subjects are required, during training, to change systematically their emphasis, effort, attention allocation policy (these terms are used interchangeably) on major subcomponents of the performed tasks. Emphasis levels are varied between few-minute practice trials or among pre-specified short durations of task performance. There are four major variants of the emphasis change protocol: variable priorities, emphasis change, the introduction of a secondary task, and task switching. This chapter describes the emphasis change protocol and introduces a new concept called “task shell”, a mental model of the integrated structural and dynamic properties of a task. A task shell developed through emphasis change training can lead to greater sensitivity to changes in task difficulty and load, and to better adaptation to changes through attention reallocation.
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