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Psychophysiology of Emotion and Cognition - PEC

PEC Team

Scope of our group's research

PEC focuses on research into basic affective and cognitive processes. Besides converging on study topics, our members also elect  similar methods. We measure brain activity, body reactions and behavioral outputs. Indeed, two core approaches characterize the group: (1) the aim to understand emotion, cognition and social-cognition, development and brain processes, and their interplay; (2) the means by which we address those processes  - on the one hand we look at behavior output, thus using behavioral measures (e.g., reaction times, memory performance, facial expressions, postures and  interactions, approach-avoidance patterns), and on the other,  we inspect brain activity’s outputs, thus taking both peripheral nervous system (PNS) measures - psychophysiological -  and central nervous system (CNS) -neurophysiological - measures.


Main Research Lines


1) Emotions. This research line includes the study  of emotional reactions and emotion related behavior (e.g. expressive behavior, empathic responses, agression, social anxiety, aspects of emotional development and emotion perception.
2) Brain Mapping. This line includes the study of the epileptic children's brains and the cartography of cognitive and emotional functions in the brain, with a stronger emphasis on language areas.
3) Social Cognition. This research line includes, but is not limited to,  studies of perception impression formation and expectancy violation

Examples of Research we conduct

          Psychophysiological correlates of empathy in adolescents and adults
Emotional desensitization to violence, empathy and aggression
Spontaneous facial behavior in emotional situations
Perception of facial expressions
Avatar modelling with emotional expression
Shared and distinctive aspects of processing social and non-social information: Using ERPs (N400) to disentangle processes
Psychophysiological correlates of expectancy violations in social (impression formation) and non-social (language comprehension) contexts
Brain mapping of language and cognitive functions



Contacts

Group Coordinators: Rita Jerónimo (rita.jeronimo@iscte.pt) and Augusta Gaspar (augusta.gaspar@iscte.pt)


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