“Think you can talk on the phone, send an instant message and read your e-mail all at once? Stanford researchers say even trying may impair your cognitive control.

…after putting about 100 students through a series of three tests, the researchers realized those heavy media multitaskers are paying a big mental price.

They’re suckers for irrelevancy, said communication Professor Clifford Nass, one of the researchers whose findings are published in the Aug. 24 edition of the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences. Everything distracts them.

…the heavy multitaskers underperformed the light multitaskers.”

Media multitaskers pay mental price, Stanford study shows, Stanford Report, Aug. 24, 2009

by Tony Schwartz and Catherine McCarthy