Department of Mathematics

Johnson Controls, Inc.

A Process Model for Analyzing Driver Performance*

Proposer/Liason: Colleen Serafin

Driver distraction is a topic of growing interest to automobile manufacturers and the public. A major concern is the degree to which operating electronic devices while driving may distract drivers from the driving task. A common method for assessing driver distraction is to measure a number of driver performance variables in a driving simulator while simultaneously operating an in- vehicle electronic device. By comparing driving performance prior to operating the electronic device to performance while operating while operating the device one can determine whether device operation has a significant detrimental impact on driving.

Typically, driving performance data such as speed, lane position or road conditions are summarized across intervals of time and the summary data become values in the analysis. However, driving is continuous in time and summarizing over temporal intervals results in a loss of potentially valuable information. An alternative is to treat driving as a temporally continuous process, modeling the impact of key events (e.g., beginning to operate an electronic device) on process variables over time. Johnson Controls, Inc. desires to have a process model developed for analyzing the impact of input events (operating controls on an electronic device) on continuous driving performance variables.

*Summary prepared by Colleen Serafin.

Back To the Top


For any additional questions regarding the program curriculum and/or the extension deadline for the application to the MSIM program, contact us at


Department of Mathematics
Michigan State University
619 Red Cedar Road
C212 Wells Hall
East Lansing, MI 48824

Phone: (517) 353-0844
Fax: (517) 432-1562

College of Natural Science