Healthier Me: Frequent Multi-Taskers Are Bad At It - Valley News Live - KVLY/KXJB - Fargo/Grand Forks

Healthier Me: Frequent Multi-Taskers Are Bad At It

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Some of us think we're good at multi-tasking, but in tonight's Healthier Me, new research suggests we probably aren't.


     Multi-tasking is considered a plus on most resumes; apparently doing it well can make you extremely valuable to a company or business. The majority of us even multi-task every day in the car.

Psychology Professor David Strayer has this art form down to a science. In a new study, he looked at the multi-tasking abilities and personalities of more than 300 students.


Professor Strayer: "We're trying to go beyond the typical crash data you get from the some of the accident analysis that you get at the federal level and understand something about the person."


You know what they found?


Professor Strayer: "the people who do it the most are kind of the least capable of doing it."


Of the students tested, 70% believed they were above average when it comes to multi-tasking, and, Professor Strayer says, the same 70% "tend to score higher in impulsivity, higher in sensation-seeking, tend to be overconfident of their abilities... when, in fact, their actual ability is nowhere as good as they think."

The new study suggests that only 2.5% of those surveyed can actually multitask -- meaning that slightly more than 97% of us are bad at multitasking.

Seeing the results of his study, Professor Strayer hopes people will reëxamine their own multi-tasking ability: "If you're going to try to change people's behavior and [...] attitudes towards texting or talking while they're driving, you should understand why they do it to begin with."

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