The purpose of this study was to determine if the peripheral vision of motor vehicle drivers can be improved through training. The specific goals were: (1) to develop an indoor training technique which would produce sustantial improvement in one or more peripheral vision functions, and (2) to determine if the improvements realized through indoor training would transfer to both similar and different peripheral vision functions in the driving context. Three experiments were performed. Since peripheral vision declines with age, the majority of the subjects participating in these experiments were 60 years of age or older. During Experiment I the training regimen was too strenuous for the subjects so that no useful results, other than methodological ones, were obtained. Experiment II consisted of 10 days of training on vehicular silhouette recognition in the peripheral field of view. The experimental subjects showed significant and substantial improvements in their ability to recognize vehicular silhouettes. A control group showed no improvement. Experiment III replicated Experiment II with the addition of testing while driving on the highway. A control group was administered the same tests as the experimental subjects. The experimental subjects again showed substantial improvements in peripheral vision performance in the training context. They also showed significant improvement on the silhouette recognition and motion detection tests conducted during driving. Remarkably, however, the control subjects exhibited nearly as much improvement on the same tests. The difference in improvement between the groups was not statistically significant; thus, there was no evidence that improvement of peripheral vision due to indoor training transfers to the driving context. However, the rapid improvement in peripheral vision performance during driving tests by both experimental and control subjects is testimony to the fact that this is a readily trainable function. (NHTSA)

  • Corporate Authors:

    Human Factors Research, Incorporated

    6780 Cortona Drive
    Goleta, CA  United States  93017

    National Highway Traffic Safety Administration

    1200 New Jersey Avenue, SE
    Washington, DC  United States  20590
  • Authors:
    • Hennessy, R T
    • Newton, R E
  • Publication Date: 1977-6

Media Info

  • Pagination: 241 p.

Subject/Index Terms

Filing Info

  • Accession Number: 00311306
  • Record Type: Publication
  • Report/Paper Numbers: Final Rpt.
  • Contract Numbers: DOT-HS-5-01204
  • Files: TRIS, USDOT
  • Created Date: Oct 8 1980 12:00AM