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On the seperability of cognitive abilities related to Posner's attention components and their contributions to conceptually distinct attention abilities related to working memory, action theory, and psychometric assessment.
In: European Psychologist,
, S. 103-118
The study investigates whether five often postulated attention abilities related to Posner's attention components (Posner & Boies, 1971; Posner & Rafal, 1987) - alertness, spatial attention, focused attention, attentional switching, and divided attention - represent empirically distinguishable cognitive mechanisms from an individual differences perspective, and to what extent these abilities contribute to conceptually distinct attention abilities related to working memory (Baddeley, 1986), action theory ( Neumann, 1992), and psychometric assessment (e.g., Brickenkamp, 1994; Moosbrugger & Goldhammer, 2007). A total of 232 participants completed 12 attention tasks intended to measure the ablities of interest. First, confirmatory factor analyses (CFA) revealed that the five attention ablilities based on Posner's work are moderately related, but clearly distinguishable. The proposed confirmatory factor model consists of one common and five specific attentition ability factors. Second, structural equation modeling (SEM) indicated that these five specific attention abilities contribute differentially to attention abilities associated with working memory, action theory, and psychometric assessment, wheras the common factor contributes significantly to all of them. Especially, the results suggest that both divided attention and attentional switching are involved in action-oriented attention abilities as well as in attention abilities associated with psychometric assessment ("concentration"). (DIPF/ Author)
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