The Gulf Today - Panorama - - HAVE YOU HEARD? -

With de­mands of work pro­duc­tiv­ity shoot­ing up stress lev­els, re­searchers have dis­cov­ered that a per­son’s eyes may of­fer a so­lu­tion.

The study showed that the pupil di­la­tion — widen­ing of the pupils of the eyes — could be used to in­di­cate lev­els of stress of a per­son in a mul­ti­task­ing en­vi­ron­ment. “Many peo­ple mul­ti­task but cur­rently there is no mea­sure­ment for some­one’s men­tal well-be­ing. How­ever, we found that the size of a pupil could be the key to mea­sur­ing some­one’s men­tal state while they mul­ti­task,” said Jung Hyup Kim, as­sis­tant pro­fes­sor from the Univer­sity of Mis­souri in the US.

The re­searchers used a sim­u­lated oil and gas re­fin­ery plant con­trol room where they watched, through the mo­tion-cap­ture and eye-track­ing tech­nol­ogy, as the par­tic­i­pants re­acted to un­ex­pected changes, such as alarms.

Dur­ing the sce­nario’s sim­ple tasks, the par­tic­i­pants’ eye search­ing be­hav­iours were more pre­dictable. Yet, as the tasks be­came more com­plex and un­ex­pected changes oc­curred, their eye be­hav­iour be­came more er­ratic, the find­ings re­vealed.

The team hopes this find­ing can give a bet­ter in­sight into how sys­tems should be de­signed to avoid men­tally over­load­ing work­ers and build a safer work­ing en­vi­ron­ment.

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