In the CASE laboratory, our faculty are fundamentally interested in the role of emotion on the processes underlying effects of human communication. Our faculty study risk perception, health communication, and mass communication effects—but, we all share a common fascination with emotion as a mechanism explaining impacts of communication.
The CASE laboratory is equipped with state-of-the-art software and equipment to simultaneously collect neuro & bio-physiological data of behavioral responses through integrated stimulus presentation platforms.
The workstation is equipped with:
Eye-tracking devices collect attention data on specified visual areas of interest (AOIs). Information collected includes the time to first fixation or how long it takes for participants to look at an AOI for the first time; fixation duration or how long they looked at each area; fixation count or how many times they look at an area; pupil size and distance to screen are also recorded to assess arousal. However, participants may be interested in specific areas because of mixed emotions (i.e., they may like or dislike what they are seeing). In order to assess their emotional state, facial expression analysis is conducted to detect overall emotional responses (positive, negative, or neutral). It is also possible to detect basic emotions such as joy, anger, surprise, fear, sadness, disgust, and contempt. GSR measurements complement this set of data by quantifying moments of increased physiological and emotional arousal allowing for a better identification of crucial parts of stimuli presentation. The physiological complexity of the message and mechanism tasks can be illuminated further by using a non-invasive electroencephalogram (EEG) brain scanner. The scanner has the ability to assess cognitive engagement and monitors workload activity in the cerebral cortex by measuring electrical flow of the brain directly from the scalp. The most basic output of the EEG is related to engagement and workload.
Monique Mitchell Turner
Maria Lapinski, Ralf Schmälzle, Shawn Turner
Youjin Jang, Ruth Heo, Rachel Barry, Clare Grall,
Andrea Johnson (Georgetown University)
Dr. Monique Mitchell Turner is Professor and Chair of the Department of Communication at Michigan State University. Prior to this appointment, she served as Associate Dean of MPH programs at the Milken Institute School of Public Health at the George Washington University.
Ralf Schmälzle, Ph.D. is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Communication at Michigan State University. He is uniquely cross-trained in communication and psychology as well as in cognitive neuroscience. His research focuses on brain responses to real-life messages in the domains of health communication and entertainment media.