Using eye-based psychophysiological cues to enhance screener vigilance

Brent T. Langhals, Judee K. Burgoon, Jay F. Nunamaker

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Scopus citations


The objective of this study was to determine whether eye and head-based psychophysiological cues were indicative of vigilance levels during long-duration tasks. For this study, 48 participants reviewed 600 visual search images to determine whether any hazardous items (guns or knives) were present. Individual vigilance levels were determined by scoring the number of correct detections during eight 5-min periods (total study length = 40 min). With an eye-tracking machine, four concurrent eye and head activity measures (blink rates, saccades, pupil diameter, and head position) were used to model changes in vigilance level throughout a simulated baggage screening task. At the end of the study, changes in blink rates and saccade rates proved to be significant predictors of an individual's ability to detect the presence of hazardous items among other nonsignificant baggage items.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)83-95
Number of pages13
JournalJournal of Cognitive Engineering and Decision Making
Issue number1
StatePublished - Mar 2013


  • Attention
  • Cognitive readiness
  • Vigilance

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Human Factors and Ergonomics
  • Engineering (miscellaneous)
  • Applied Psychology
  • Computer Science Applications


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