How stress affects functional near-infrared spectroscopy (fNIRS) measurements of mental workload

Alsuraykh, Norah H., Maior, Horia A., Wilson, Max L., Tennent, Paul and Sharples, Sarah (2018) How stress affects functional near-infrared spectroscopy (fNIRS) measurements of mental workload. In: CHI 2018: ACM SIGCHI Conference on Human Factors in Computing Systems (Extended Abstracts), 21-26 April 2018, Montreal, Canada. (In Press)

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Recent work has demonstrated that functional Near-Infrared Spectroscopy has the potential to measure changes in Mental Workload with increasing ecological validity. It is not clear, however, whether these measurements are affected by anxiety and stress of the workload, where our informal observations see some participants enjoying the workload and succeeding in tasks, while others worry and struggle with the tasks. This research evaluated the effects of stress on fNIRS measurements and performance, using the Montreal Imaging Stress Task to manipulate the experience of stress. While our results largely support this hypothesis, our conclusions were undermined by data from the Rest condition, which indicated that Mental Workload and Stress were often higher than during tasks. We hypothesize that participants were experiencing anxiety in anticipation of subsequent stress tasks. We discuss this hypothesis and present a revised study designed to better control for this result.

Item Type: Conference or Workshop Item (Poster)
Additional Information: CHI'18 Extended Abstracts doi:10.1145/3170427.3188646
Keywords: fNIRS; BCI; Stress; Mental Workload; SSSQ; MIST; Distress; Engagement; Worry; Anxiety
Schools/Departments: University of Nottingham, UK > Faculty of Engineering
University of Nottingham, UK > Faculty of Science > School of Computer Science
Depositing User: Wilson, Max
Date Deposited: 26 Mar 2018 10:40
Last Modified: 24 Apr 2018 14:49

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