Document Type


Date of Degree


Degree Name

PhD (Doctor of Philosophy)

Degree In


First Advisor

Eliot Hazeltine

First Committee Member

Susan Wagner Cook

Second Committee Member

Toby Mordkoff

Third Committee Member

Kelly Cole

Fourth Committee Member

Shaun Vecera

Fifth Committee Member

Thomas Farmer


Why are dual-task costs reduced with ideomotor (IM) compatible tasks (see e.g. Greenwald & Shulman, 1973)? In a series of experiments, I tested the way in which task structure affects dual-task performance (Halvorson et al., 2012). The results suggest that in some cases, typical dual-task costs arise from task structure rather than response limitations. Further examination of this question has shown that dual-task costs cannot be predicted solely on the basis of the relationship between the stimuli and the responses; the relationship between the tasks, or the task pairing, plays a critical role in whether the tasks overlap and performance is impaired. A series of experiments using novel task pairings showed that when one task uses a spatial central code and the other uses a verbal central code, dual-task costs are eliminated.


Dual-task costs, task structure


viii, 211 pages


Includes bibliographical references (pages 193-211).


Copyright 2013 Kimberly Mae Halvorson

Included in

Psychology Commons