In emotional and cognitive research, the baseline is commonly used for standardization purposes in order to have a reference for the identification of the activation. Since no previous studies have investigated which moment of the experiment could be considered optimal for baseline evaluation, we designed an experimental protocol to analyze which time interval could be considered more effective in highlighting differences between the baseline state and the cognitive effort exhibited during tasks (specifically, reaction and working memory tasks). Several indexes were extracted from EEG signals during the visualization of the considered baseline stimuli and the execution of tasks. From our results, as regards to the considered Global Field Power (GFP) indexes (Attention and Memorization indexes), the last baseline stimulus seems to be the best one to highlight the difference in cognitive workload between the individual baseline condition and the two cognitive tasks. Instead, in terms of Engagement index (EI), the difference between Reaction Task (RT) and the individual baseline condition seems to be best highlighted by the relaxing video right after performed tasks. In conclusion, the best baseline position to maximize the differences in cognitive workload may vary among the considered indexes because of confounding effects and individual differences, but further analyses are required to validate this result.

Investigating the optimal baseline positioning to maximize cognitive experimental outcome

Reali, Pierluigi;Lolatto, Riccardo;DE STEFANO, PAOLA;Cerutti, Sergio;Bianchi, Anna M.
2019

Abstract

In emotional and cognitive research, the baseline is commonly used for standardization purposes in order to have a reference for the identification of the activation. Since no previous studies have investigated which moment of the experiment could be considered optimal for baseline evaluation, we designed an experimental protocol to analyze which time interval could be considered more effective in highlighting differences between the baseline state and the cognitive effort exhibited during tasks (specifically, reaction and working memory tasks). Several indexes were extracted from EEG signals during the visualization of the considered baseline stimuli and the execution of tasks. From our results, as regards to the considered Global Field Power (GFP) indexes (Attention and Memorization indexes), the last baseline stimulus seems to be the best one to highlight the difference in cognitive workload between the individual baseline condition and the two cognitive tasks. Instead, in terms of Engagement index (EI), the difference between Reaction Task (RT) and the individual baseline condition seems to be best highlighted by the relaxing video right after performed tasks. In conclusion, the best baseline position to maximize the differences in cognitive workload may vary among the considered indexes because of confounding effects and individual differences, but further analyses are required to validate this result.
2019 41st Annual International Conference of the IEEE Engineering in Medicine and Biology Society (EMBC)
978-1-5386-1311-5
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: http://hdl.handle.net/11311/1119091
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