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TRAINING AND CONTEXT IN SONIFICATION



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Training and Context in Sonification 1 Running head TRAINING AND CONTEXT IN SONIFICATION Effects of Training and Context on Human Performance in a Point Estimation Sonification Task A Thesis Presented To The Academic Faculty by Daniel R Smith In Partial Fulfillment of the Requirements for the Degree Master of Science in Psychology Georgia Institute of Technology April 2003 Training and Context in Sonification 2 Abstract This study extends research in sonification auditory perception and skill acquisition to examine ways to improve human performance with auditory graphs Recent research has investigated use of mappings scalings and polarities Neuhoff Wayand 2002 Walker 2002 as well as the addition of contextual design features Bonebright Nees Connerley McCain 2001 Flowers Buhman Turnage 1997 Flowers Hauer 1995 Gardner Lundquist Sahyun 1996 but little has been done to quantify and compare the performance effects of such features or to investigate performance effects of training in specific sonification tasks such as point estimation In Study 1 of this thesis the performance effects of adding several contextual design features were measured and compared An analysis of the data revealed that contextual design features such as x axis clicks in conjunction with a discretely varying sound data mapping and a dynamic y axis reference tone reinforcing the correct y axis scaling both improved performance While a static y axis reference tone representing the y axis value of the initial data point did not Study 2 expanded on those findings by investigating the performance effects of added contextual design features under different conditions and in conjunction with training An analysis of those data revealed that when the data to be displayed was mapped to a continuously varying sound adding the dynamic y axis reference tone still improved performance as did training but adding the x axis clicks did not Finally an interaction was discovered between training and the dynamic y axis



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