Mental abilities during a simulated dive to 427 meters underwater

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Conducted an experiment with 6 male US Navy divers at a simulated depth of 427 m to investigate the possibility that the underwater environment affects mental abilities. The effects of depth, immersion, their interaction, and repeated testing were assessed with a battery of 10 tests (adapted from J. W. French et al, 1963) representing 7 cognitive abilities. Results show impairment of Perceptual Speed and Number of Facility test scores and improvement of Associative Memory at 427 m, compared with abilities at sea level. Hidden Patterns and Division test scores improved with repeated testing. Implications for design of divers' tasks are discussed. (12 ref) (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2006 APA, all rights reserved)

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