Date of Award


Degree Name

Master of Arts



First Advisor

Dr. Lisa Baker

Second Advisor

Dr. Alan Poling

Access Setting

Masters Thesis-Open Access


The present study examined cardiovascular responses to the combination of caffeine (250 mg) and the repeated acquisition and performance procedure (RAPP) in humans. Six male subjects were tested in a within-subject, double-blind design. Repeated measurements of frontalis electromyogram (EMO), hand-skin temperature, heart rate, respiration, systolic blood pressure, and diastolic blood pressure were obtained during pre-drug, post-drug, acquisition, performance, and recovery periods. Measures of rate, percent error, and true error were obtained during the acquisition and performance components of the RAPP. Drug conditions (caffeine and placebo) and test orders (acquisition before performance and performance before acquisition) were pseudo- random across subjects. Individual and statistical analyses (three-way repeated measures ANOVAs (Drug x Period x Test Order)) were conducted.

Caffeine alone decreased hand-skin temperature and increased systolic and diastolic blood pressures. RAPP alone produced little effect on physiological measures, with the exception of a decrease in respiration rate. The fact that there were no evident trends of drug and period interactions suggests that caffeine did not facilitate physiological alterations during RAPP. Also, caffeine did not significantly alter response rate, percent error, or true error during acquisition or performance tasks.

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Psychology Commons