Display Settings:

Format

Send to:

Choose Destination
We are sorry, but NCBI web applications do not support your browser and may not function properly. More information
Psychol Sci. 2008 Dec;19(12):1207-12. doi: 10.1111/j.1467-9280.2008.02225.x.

The cognitive benefits of interacting with nature.

Author information

  • 1Department of Psychology, University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, MI 48109-1043, USA. bermanm@umich.edu

Abstract

We compare the restorative effects on cognitive functioning of interactions with natural versus urban environments. Attention restoration theory (ART) provides an analysis of the kinds of environments that lead to improvements in directed-attention abilities. Nature, which is filled with intriguing stimuli, modestly grabs attention in a bottom-up fashion, allowing top-down directed-attention abilities a chance to replenish. Unlike natural environments, urban environments are filled with stimulation that captures attention dramatically and additionally requires directed attention (e.g., to avoid being hit by a car), making them less restorative. We present two experiments that show that walking in nature or viewing pictures of nature can improve directed-attention abilities as measured with a backwards digit-span task and the Attention Network Task, thus validating attention restoration theory.

PMID:
19121124
[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
PubMed Commons home

PubMed Commons

0 comments
How to join PubMed Commons

    Supplemental Content

    Full text links

    Icon for HighWire
    Loading ...
    Write to the Help Desk