The effects of fascination and extent on judgments of tranquility

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Publication Type thesis
School or College College of Health
Department Parks Recreation & Tourism
Author Splan, Kimberly Susan
Title The effects of fascination and extent on judgments of tranquility
Date 2011-05
Description Many contemporary work, school, and home environments produce attentional fatigue. One way to recover from such attentional fatigue is to place oneself in environments or settings that promote feelings of tranquility. One way to begin systematic study of environment-tranquility relations is to frame research within Attention Restoration Theory (ART). This theory is based on environmental supports that allow one to shift from directed or focused attention to involuntary forms of attention, thus allowing fatigued attentional capacities to rest. ART proposes that four judgments of environmental configurations are important to creating restorative experiences. These are environments that afford disengaging from one‘s normal physical environment, cognitive tasks, or cares and concerns (called "being away"), fascination, extent, and goal compatibility. These same variables, although more refined and subtly manipulated, may also promote experiences of tranquility. Two variables, within Attention Restoration Theory, that may be particularly associated with promoting experiences of tranquility are fascination and extent. Fascination can exist at different levels in a setting, and some levels may grab and hold attention in an undramatic way, leaving "cognitive space" for gentle contemplation and reflection. On the face, they seem like settings that should promote tranquil experiences. Extent, the organized patterns in an environment that make it seem to "hang together," may interact with fascination to produce tranquil states. This is because momentarily and unrelated fascinating stimuli will not hold the mind in a gently focused manner long enough for low activation, yet pleasantly valenced states associated with tranquility to accrue. Thus, fascination and extent should interact in such a way that environments judged as containing fascination and extent should promote the greatest states of tranquility. Therefore, the purpose of this study was to examine the interactive effects of fascination and extent on judgments of tranquility associated with scenes of natural landscapes. Participants rated 12 photos of environments containing different levels of fascination and extent. The design was a repeated measures and hierarchal linear modeling using HLM, 6.0 was used to test the study‘s hypothesis. Results show that both fascination and extent were positively associated with tranquility.
Type Text
Publisher University of Utah
Subject Attention restoration theory; Environmental psychology; Hierarchal linear modeling; Landscape architecture and design; Restorative environments; Tranquility
Dissertation Institution University of Utah
Dissertation Name Master of Science
Language eng
Rights Management Copyright © Kimberly Susan Splan 2011
Format Medium application/pdf
Format Extent 2,309-084 bytes
Identifier us-etd3,18873
Source original in Marriott Library Special Collections ; GF7.5 2011 .S65
ARK ark:/87278/s6dr396c
Setname ir_etd
Date Created 2012-04-24
Date Modified 2018-03-26
ID 194702
Reference URL https://collections.lib.utah.edu/ark:/87278/s6dr396c