Title page for ETD etd-05172002-160205

Type of Document Master's Thesis
Author Christie, Israel C
Author's Email Address ichristie@vt.edu
URN etd-05172002-160205
Title Multivariate Discrimination of Emotion-Specific Autonomic Nervous System Activity
Degree Master of Science
Department Psychology
Advisory Committee
Advisor Name Title
Friedman, Bruce H. Committee Chair
Crawford, Helen J. Committee Member
Franchina, Joseph J. Committee Member
  • Emotion
  • Autonomic Specificity
  • Multivariate Pattern Classification
Date of Defense 2002-05-02
Availability unrestricted
The present study investigated autonomic nervous system (ANS) patterning during experimentally manipulated emotion. Film clips previously shown to induce amusement, anger, contentment, disgust, fear, and sadness, in addition to a neutral control, were presented to 34 college-aged subjects while electrodermal activity, blood pressure and electrocardiogram (ECG) were recorded as was self-reported affect. Mean and mean successive difference of inter-beat interval were derived from the ECG. Pattern classification analysis revealed emotion-specific patterning for all emotion conditions except disgust. Discriminant function analysis was used to describe the location of discrete emotions within a dimensional affective state space, for both self-report and ANS activity. Findings suggest traditional dimensional emotion models accurately describe the state space for self-reported emotion, but may require modification in order to accurately describe the state space for ANS activity during discrete emotions. Proposed modifications are consistent with the adoption of a discrete-dimensional hybrid model as well as current trends in emotion theory.
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