Psychophysiological and Cognitive Application

Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam

Course Description

  • Course Name

    Psychophysiological and Cognitive Application

  • Host University

    Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam

  • Location

    Amsterdam, The Netherlands

  • Area of Study


  • Language Level

    Taught In English

    Hours & Credits

  • ECTS Credits

  • Recommended U.S. Semester Credits
  • Recommended U.S. Quarter Units
  • Overview

    Period 3

    Level: 300


    • Insight in the link between affective state and autonomic nervous system activity.
    • Insight in the link between cognitive state and eye-movement, psychophysics and reaction time metrics.
    • Knowledge of typical experimental approaches and research designs in psychophysiology and cognitive psychology.
    • Practical skills in the laboratory measurement of autonomic nervous system activity, eye-movement, psychophysics and reaction time as windows into affective and cognitive processing in the brain

    In plenary lectures we will outline how affective and cognitive processing is reflected in observable behavioral and physiological signals. The lectures are interspersed with a series of practicals, where the students learn how to record the ElectroCardioGram (ECG), Skin-conductance Level (SCL), eye movements, psychophysics and reaction times in experimental designs aimed at isolating specific affective and cognitive processes. This will be done in a standardized laboratory setting using the Biopac system for ECG/SCL and the Eyelink system to measure the different aspects of eye movements. Amongst others, students will measure (on each other): skin-conductance responses to tonic and phasic emotional stimuli; eye-movements and reaction times when performing a xx task. Furthermore, tactile sensitivity will be measured by using a psychophysical approach. The main principles, strategies and limitations for data analysis will be covered in the lectures and then applied in the practicals to the self-recorded data-sets.

    Lectures and practicals.

    Written examination (50% of grade) of literature and execution of a short data collection experiment (25%) and the signal analysis on the data collected (25%).

    Finished 2nd year of the Bachelor Psychology, Education sciences or Movement Sciences

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