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J Gen Psychol. 1992 Jul;119(3):217-28.

Sustained attention and the Type A behavior pattern: the effect of daydreaming on performance.

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  • 1Department of Psychology, Brandeis University.


The present study examined the ability of Type A and Type B subjects to sustain attention during a 40-min visual vigilance task. It was predicted that Type A subjects would perform better than Type B subjects and that the performance of both groups would be related to the frequency of daydreams during the vigil. Type A subjects outperformed Type B subjects with regard to perceptual sensitivity (A') and number of signal detections. Although both groups reported an increase in the number of their daydreams as the vigil progressed, Type A subjects reported fewer daydreams during each period of watch than did Type B subjects. In addition, an inverse relationship was found between the number of signal detections and the frequency of daydreams.

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