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Psychological variables in the control of brain-computer interfaces

Research Area: Year: 2011
Type of Publication: Article Keywords: Brain, physiology; Electroencephalography; Female; Humans; Male; User-Computer Interface; Young Adult
Authors: da Silva Sauer, Leandro; Valero Aguayo, Luis; Velasco Álvarez, Francisco; Ron Angevín, Ricardo
Journal: Psicothema Volume: 23
Number: 4 Pages: 745-751
Month: November
ISSN: 0214-9915
BCI (Brain-Computer Interface) is a system that allows interaction between the human brain and a computer. It is based on analyzing electroencephalographic signals (EEG) and processing them to generate control commands. The study analyzed the possible influence of psychological variables, such as the imaginative kinesthetic capacity and anxiety, in relation to performance in a BCI. All participants (4 male and 19 female students) completed the questionnaires and carried out a session of BCI to control their EEG signals in a virtual setting of a car along a straight road. The group was divided into two subgroups according to their EEG signals or differential responses obtained in the left-right discrimination. Study results showed no significant differences in cognitive variables of imagination or in anxiety. By comparing the degree of participants' BCI control, a new quantitative parameter for comparing performances and making decisions in signal processing was found. The findings, the ongoing research process to refine the control of a BCI, and the interaction of psychological and computer procedures are discussed.

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