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Iranian J Environ Health Sci Eng. 2013 Feb 9;10(1):18. doi: 10.1186/1735-2746-10-18.

The effects of road traffic noise on mental performance.

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Occupational Health Research Center, Tehran University of Medical Sciences, Tehran, Iran.



Noise is one of the more widespread pollutions of road transportation system, which can cause deterioration in performance. This experimental study was designed to assess the effect of road traffic noise on performance with regard to extra/introversion and sex of participants. The personality trait of extra/introversion has been remarked as relevant factor to mental performance.


Thirty six (26 males and 10 females) medical sciences students of Tehran University participated in the study. The students were placed in an unechoing room and performed the Cognitrone test from Vienna Test System in quiet condition and under road traffic noise (71 dBA). The results of this study pointed out that noise increased the percentage of sum of correct answers but had no effect on the speed of performance. Furthermore this study showed that performance was enhanced in extroverts (P=0.001) but no significant difference was found in introverts (P ≤0.05).


The regression analysis revealed that extra/introversion was more important than sex to predict the performance parameters.

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