Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Science In Aviation Human Factors



First Advisor

Meredith Carroll

Second Advisor

Deborah Carstens

Third Advisor

Katrina Ellis


The vigilance decrement is a thoroughly researched phenomenon in psychological literature and has been identified in many monotonous tasks. Although the phenomenon has been recorded for approximately 80 years, no universal repair, or theory to account for its onset, has been identified. Jobs requiring monotonous task performance have been increasing as time has elapsed, in part due to the rise in automation. Furthermore, much of the vigilance literature does not address modern, more complex tasks, such as the Unmanned Aerial Systems (UAS) monitoring task. A potential method that has been proposed to combat the vigilance decrement is the inclusion of music during task performance to increase arousal and decrease the vigilance decrement. This study examined the impact of listening to music during performance of a simulated UAS monitoring task on the vigilance decrement, as measured by target detection performance and reaction time, as well as the impact on an individual’s stress and boredom levels.


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