• A comparison of visual scan patterns for an elite judge, elite coach and novice judge in dressage

      Lafferty, Moira E.; Skyrme, Donna (University of Chester, 2013-09)
      Visual search patterns have often been studied in the sport domain with comparisons between expert and novice performers. Less research has been done comparing the visual search patterns of judges and in particular comparing the search patterns between elite judges and coaches. This study examines the visual search patterns of an elite judge, an elite coach and a novice judge over three dressage tests. The participants watched and judged three dressage tests lasting approximately five minutes each whilst wearing the ASL 501eye tracking device which recorded their eye gaze onto a video camera. Frame by frame analysis was completed for each participant on the eye tracking data and the number of fixations, the duration of the fixations and the location of the fixations were recorded. Analysis of the results found the two experts had similarities between their visual search patterns and as expected the novice judge had a greater number of fixations compared to the expert judge during two of the dressage tests. However, the expert judge had a lower duration time fixating than was expected compared to the novice judge and the expert coach. It is possible that the expert judge is able to process the information to make the decision more effectively. Therefore, more research is needed to explore the similarities of varying levels of expertise within sport to help develop and recognise what novice and intermediate judges or coaches need to improve to reach an elite standard and also to see if there are similarities or differences between elite performers, coaches and judges.