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Office versus leisure environments: Effects of surroundings on concentration
- Burmeister, Carolin P., Moskaliuk, Johannes, Cress, Ulrike
- Journal of environmental psychology 2018 v.58 pp. 42-51
- computer simulation, field experimentation, psychology, worker honey bees
- Mobile workers perform tasks that require high concentration not only in their traditional office but also within environments that are typically related to leisure (e.g., in a park or in the living room). Because research has shown that surroundings affect cognitive processing, we assume that concentration is different in office versus in leisure environments. We hypothesize that a typical office activates an associated (work-related) schema which in turn positively influences processes that are normally conducted within the environment (e.g., show high concentration in work-related activities in the office). In two studies, we assessed participants’ objective and subjective work-related concentration twice, each time once within an office and once within a leisure environment. In study 1 (laboratory), we manipulated environments by means of virtual realities. In study 2 (field experiment), participants were tested within their self-elected, real-life environments. In both studies, results indicated higher work-related concentration when surrounded by an office compared to a leisure environment.