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Study on the Impact of Cognitive Load on Performance in Engineering Design

Zimmerer, Christoph; Matthiesen, Sven


The objective evaluation of empirical studies is an important part when assessing demand and validating design methods. However, metrics that can also map cognitive processes during design are still lacking. In order to address this problem, an online study with 12 participants was conducted. The aim of this investigation was to find a relation between cognitive load and performance in engineering design tasks. To assess the cognitive load, the NASA-RTLX questionnaire was used as an established measurement tool and was related to the results achieved by the participants. The results show that there is a correlation between the two investigated parameters. Based on a statistical analysis a correlation between increasing cognitive load and a decrease in performance could be identified. The tasks used produce comparable results to other studies investigating cognitive load, but the task causing the highest cognitive load shows the widest scatter in performance. The u-curve as suggested by the state of the art was not visible in the study’s results, but the cognitive load should be nevertheless used for studies of design processes, because it may reveal a need for methodical support.

Verlagsausgabe §
DOI: 10.5445/IR/1000138007
Veröffentlicht am 29.09.2021
DOI: 10.1017/pds.2021.537
Zitationen: 3
Cover der Publikation
Zugehörige Institution(en) am KIT Institut für Produktentwicklung (IPEK)
Publikationstyp Proceedingsbeitrag
Publikationsjahr 2021
Sprache Englisch
Identifikator ISSN: 2732-527X
KITopen-ID: 1000138007
Erschienen in Proceedings of the ICED21 International Conference on Engineering Design, 16 - 20 August 2021, Chalmers University of Technology, Gothenburg, Sweden
Veranstaltung International Conference on Engineering Design (ICED 2021), Göteborg, Schweden, 16.08.2021 – 20.08.2021
Verlag Cambridge University Press (CUP)
Seiten 2761–2770
Serie Proceedings of the Design Society ; 1
Vorab online veröffentlicht am 27.07.2021
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