Feasibility of DriveFocus™ and Driving Simulation Interventions in Young Drivers

OTJR (Thorofare N J). 2018 Oct;38(4):245-253. doi: 10.1177/1539449218787495. Epub 2018 Jul 15.


Motor vehicle collisions are the leading cause of death among North American youth, with a high prevalence of distraction-related fatalities. Youth-focused interventions must address detecting (visual scanning) and responding (adjustment to stimuli) to critical roadway information. In this repeated measures study, we investigated the feasibility (i.e., recruitment and sample characteristics; data collection procedures; acceptability of the intervention; resources; and preliminary effects) of a DriveFocus™ app intervention on youth's driving performance. Thirty-four youth participated in a 9-week protocol (retention rate = 89.7%; adherence rate = 100%). No participants experienced simulator sickness. A preliminary nonparametric evaluation of the results ( n = 34) indicated a statistically significant decrease in the number of visual scanning, F(2, 68) = 3.769, p = .028, and adjustment to stimuli, F(2, 68) = 6.759, p = .002, errors between baseline, midpoint, and posttest. This study lays the foundation to support a targeted intervention trial to improve youth's attention to critical road information, building on their mobile technology preferences.

Keywords: adolescents; driving; intervention.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Attention*
  • Automobile Driving / psychology*
  • Computer Simulation*
  • Feasibility Studies
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Mobile Applications*
  • Non-Randomized Controlled Trials as Topic
  • Pilot Projects
  • Young Adult