In-task auditory performance-related feedback promotes cardiovascular markers of a challenge state during a pressurized task

Emily Crowe, Lee Moore, David Harris, Mark Wilson, Samuel Vine

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle


Background and Objectives: Individuals evaluate the demands and resources associated with a pressurized situation, which leads to distinct patterns of cardiovascular responses. While it is accepted that cognitive evaluations are updated throughout a pressurized situation, to date, cardiovascular markers have only been recorded immediately before, or averaged across, these situations. Thus, this study examined the influence of in-task performance-related feedback on cardiovascular markers of challenge and threat to explore fluctuations in these markers. Methods and Design: Forty participants completed a pressurized visual search task while cardiovascular markers of challenge and threat were recorded. During the task, participants received either positive or negative feedback via distinct auditory tones to induce a challenge or threat state. Following task completion, cardiovascular markers were recorded during a recovery phase. Results: Participants’ cardiovascular responses changed across the experimental protocol. Specifically, while participants displayed a cardiovascular response more reflective of a challenge state following in-task performance-related feedback, participants exhibited a response more akin to a threat state later during the recovery phase. Conclusions: In-task auditory performance-related feedback promoted cardiovascular markers of a challenge state. These markers fluctuated over the experiment, suggesting that they, and presumably underlying demand and resource evaluations, are relatively dynamic in nature.

Original languageEnglish
JournalAnxiety Stress and Coping
Early online date18 May 2020
Publication statusE-pub ahead of print - 18 May 2020

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