This week’s well-attended lecture by University of Washington scholar David M. Levy on the subject of meditation and multitasking explored the intersection of scientific research and centuries-old contemplative techniques. During his lecture, Levy outlined his current National Science Foundation-funded study, in which he and his colleagues tested participants on their ability to manage a combination of scheduling tasks, surveys, and intermittent interruptions.
Levy and his team examined the different ways that participants who had undergone weeks of meditation training prior to the testing fared compared to those who had had no training. Although the study is still in its early stages, preliminary results from the study indicate that those participants with meditation experience were more successful and reported lower stress levels than those who had not received the training. Levy’s talk was followed by questions and discussion from the audience of faculty, students, and staff, who offered different perspectives on these issues.
In collaboration with CNDLS, Levy is also working on a new study exploring students’ relationships with technology. Watch for more information on that effort to be posted soon.