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    Measuring the Autonomic Nervous System as a window into the mind and brain

    Ishikawa, Mitsuhiko (2023) Measuring the Autonomic Nervous System as a window into the mind and brain. European Psychologist , ISSN 1016-9040.

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    Throughout the history of psychophysiology, measures of the autonomic nervous system (ANS) have contributed to understanding psychological states and cognitive processing. Due to recent advances in brain imaging techniques, brain mapping of cognitive functions has been clarified. However, ANS measurements still have advantages in psychological research. In this paper, characteristics of ANS measurements are briefly summarized and results in psychophysiological studies are introduced. This paper describes methodologies for heart rate, skin conductance, pupil diameter, and eye blinks, which have been used in many psychophysiological studies. These measurements have been known to reflect activities in the ANS, however, each measure has a different sensitivity and validity to psychological states and cognitive processes. In general, the ANS measurements have advantages in the simplicity of data collection, which contributes to testing with a variety of participants regardless of age, tasks, and accessibility for students and early career researchers. However, interpreting the results of psychophysiological studies in line with cognitive processing, experimental designs, and paradigms requires extensive consideration. By using appropriate ANS measures in psychophysiological experiments, these methods contribute to our understanding of the mind and brain.


    Item Type: Article
    Keyword(s) / Subject(s): heart rate, skin conductance, pupil dilation, eye blink, psychophysiology
    School: Birkbeck Faculties and Schools > Faculty of Science > School of Psychological Sciences
    Research Centres and Institutes: Brain and Cognitive Development, Centre for (CBCD)
    Depositing User: Mitsuhiko Ishikawa
    Date Deposited: 10 May 2023 11:49
    Last Modified: 02 Aug 2023 18:21


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