Trejo, L. J., Kramer, A. F. & Arnold, J. A.

Event-related potentials as indices of display-monitoring performance

Biological Psychology, 40(1-2), 33–71, 1995. doi:10.1016/0301-0511(95)05103-1.


We evaluated event-related potentials (ERP) as indices of performance in three visual
display-monitoring tasks: (a) signal detection, (b) running memory and (c) computation.
Using factor analysis, we developed a global measure of performance (PFl) for each task.
Task-relevant and irrelevant-probe stimuli elicited ERPs, which included components Pl, Nl,
P2, P300, slow waves, and fronto-central negativities. In tasks (a) and (b), P300 amplitude in
the task-relevant ERPs increased when the task was engaged, and was greater for accuratethan
for inaccurate-response trials. In tasks (a) and (c), the irrelevant-probe ERPs also differed
among task and performance conditions. To relate ERP measures to PFl, we developed
linear regression models distinguished by three factors: general versus individual-subject,
stimulus relevance, and signal-to-noise ratio (SNR). Model accuracy and reliability were
highest for individual-subject, relevant-stimulus and high-SNR models, where average R2
values for the three tasks were 0.44, 0.46, and 0.38, respectively. We discuss implications of
the models for performance monitoring and implications of the ERP effects for human information