You can carry out a number of investigations to determine the effect of a specific factor on human reaction times.
A suitable investigation could be the effect of caffeine or the amount of background noise in the room. A simple method to measure the effect is to use the ruler drop test.
|1 cm||50 ms|
|5 cm||90 ms|
|10 cm||140 ms|
|15 cm||170 ms|
|20 cm||200 ms|
|25 cm||230 ms|
|30 cm||250 ms|
|Attempt||Distance on ruler with noise||Distance on ruler without noise|
|1||25 cm||18 cm|
|2||38 cm||15 cm|
|3||36 cm||22 cm|
|4||31 cm||24 cm|
|5||38 cm||13 cm|
What effect does noise have on the speed of reaction, measured in centimetres? [2 marks]
There is a clear difference between length of ruler that passed through the fingers before they managed to catch it, with and without noise. [1 mark]
For example, the first set of data, with noise – 25 cm compared to without noise – 18 cm. It suggests that noise reduces the response times of the person in this experiment. [1 mark]
Tip: include at least two or three sets of data from the results.