Date of Award

Spring 1-1-2015

Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Construction Science and Management (MCSM)


Civil, Environmental & Architectural Engineering

First Advisor

Matthew Hallowell

Second Advisor

Balaji Rajagopalan

Third Advisor

Paul Chinowsky

Fourth Advisor

Paul Goodrum


Despite OSHA regulations and strong advancements in construction safety over the past few decades, construction is still one of the most dangerous industries worldwide. Researchers have shown that safety training is crucial to injury prevention. Therefore, improving the way they are delivered so that they meet andragogical principles of learning is logical. However, when delivering new safety training it is imperative to understand the implications of the change on learning, retention, interest, emotion, and behavior. Although some literature can be used to reliably evaluate the implications of the proposed change in safety training, the relationship among injury experience, emotion, and situational interest remains unknown. To address this implications, this study tests the hypothesis that emotional responses to Live safety demonstrations (LSD) increase workers’ engagement and situational interest and elicits a strong emotional response. To test this hypothesis, a controlled experiment was designed and conducted that exposed 492 subjects to the live safety demonstrations (LSD) and measured emotional responses and situational interest before and after exposure. Once these data were collected, a principal component analysis (PCA) was performed to identify uncorrelated clusters of correlated emotions. Finally, a multivariate logistic regression was performed to test the hypothesis that some clusters of emotions can predict change (increase or decrease) in situational interest. The results show a strong relationship between negative emotional states and situational interest and no significant link to positive emotions. The implications of these findings are that workers in mid-negative and strong negative emotional states are more likely to maintain their interest in safety and be engaged in trainings than workers in positive emotional states. The relationships between the LSD and emotional response and situational interest response were explored in a separate paper.