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Psychophysiological Responses to Visual Fear Stimuli
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by Courtney M. Roberts and Katherine M. Hoetzl - Bowling Green State University (Roberts); Medical University of Ohio (Hoetzl)
Categories: Physiological | Sensation/Perception
The aim of the current research was to examine the effect of different types of fearful stimuli on heart rate and skin conductance. Our independent variable was the presentation of fearful stimuli in the form of movie clips. The clips were composed of suspenseful, gory, and shocking stimuli. Our dependent variables were heart rate and galvanic skin response recordings. Undergraduate students (n = 10) were used in the study (7 women, 3 men). Of the 3 movies investigated, we proposed that both heart rate and galvanic skin response would be lowest while viewing gory stimuli and highest while viewing shocking stimuli. This trend was present, however the results were not statistically significant. Future research ideas are suggested.