The Emotion Identification Task is a behavioral assay that utilizes two tasks to measure an individual’s ability to identify facial emotions and emotional bias. The first phase (the “study phase”) is an explicit emotion identification task, and the second phase is an implicit emotion recognition task. Using an internet-based test (“WebNeuro”), participants view 96 photographs of 8 different individuals expressing six different emotions: (1) neutral, (2) happy, (3) sad, (4) fear, (5) anger, and (6) disgust. During the study phase, stimuli are presented to participants on a computer monitor in a pseudorandom order for two seconds each, and participants are instructed to identify which of the six emotions is represented via mouse-click. After completing the study phase, participants undergo a 20-minutes of unrelated filler tasks. After this time the second phase (i.e., emotion recognition) begins. Participants are presented with one old stimulus (one of 24 randomly selected stimuli from the study phase) and one new stimulus (selected from a new set of 24 facial emotion stimuli) matched on gender and emotion and presented in a pseudorandom order. Participants indicate (via mouse click) which of the two faces they recognize from the previous phase. The dependent measures for the explicit identification condition are: (1) emotion identification accuracy (percentage of correct responses), (2) reaction time (RT) for correct responses, and (3) variability of RT. Emotion bias is quantified by incorrect identification of facial emotion stimulus (e.g., the percentage of times neutral is misidentified as sad, disgust, fear, anger, or happiness). The dependent measures for the implicit recognition condition are: (1) emotion recognition accuracy, (2) RT for correct responses, and (3) variability of RT.
The Emotion Identification Task measures biases towards recognizing certain emotions. For example, it has been commonly used to elicit individual differences in biases towards threat (via fear stimuli) (Watters & Williams, 2011). Mathersul et al. investigated this Web Measure on a normative population to establish seven core domains of emotion processing in relation to social cognition: explicit emotion identification speed, implicit emotion recognition speed, implicit emotion recognition accuracy, threat processing, sadness– disgust identification, positive emotion, and face perception (Mathersul et al., 2009). Emotion processing is a fundamental component of social cognition (Lane & Schwartz, 1987), which involves the application of our thought processes in social interactions and resulting behaviors (Adolph, 2011). Therefore, our biases in detecting emotions could be a possible mechanism underlying changes in our behavior.
[+] PMCID, PUBMED ID, or CITATION
Text Citation: Adolphs, R. (2001). The neurobiology of social cognition. Current Opinion in Neurobiology, 11, 231–239.
Text Citation: Lane, R.D., Schwartz, G.E. (1987). Levels of emotional awareness: A cognitive-developmental theory and its application to psychopathology. American Journal of Psychiatry, 144, 133–143.
Text Citation: Watters, A.J., Williams, L.M. (2011). Negative biases and risk for depression; integrating self‐report and emotion task markers. Depression and anxiety, 28(8), 703-718.
Text Citation: Williams, L.M., Mathersul, D., Palmer, D.M., Gur, R.C., Gur, R.E., Gordon, E. (2009). Explicit identification and implicit recognition of facial emotions: I. Age effects in males and females across 10 decades. J Clin Exp Neuropsychol, 31, 257–277.
Text Citation: Mathersul, D., Palmer, D.M., Gur, R.C., Gur, R.E., Cooper, N., Gordon, E., Williams, L.M. (2009). Explicit identification and implicit recognition of facial emotions: II. Core domains and relationships with general cognition. J Clin Exp Neuropsychol, 31, 278–291.
This measure has not been measured yet.
This measure has not been influenced yet.
This measure has not been validated yet.
The link provides information about the web-based cognitive assessment "WebNeuro." All coding and scoring is calculated automatically by WebNeuro and researchers can access these dependent measures from the Emotion Identification Task through an online report.
The Science of Behavior Change (SOBC) program seeks to promote basic research on the initiation, personalization and maintenance of behavior change. By integrating work across disciplines, this effort will lead to an improved understanding of the underlying principles of behavior change. The SOBC program aims to implement a mechanisms-focused, experimental medicine approach to behavior change research and to develop the tools required to implement such an approach. The experimental medicine approach involves: identifying an intervention target, developing measures to permit verification of the target, engaging the target through experimentation or intervention, and testing the degree to which target engagement produces the desired behavior change.
Within the SOBC Measures Repository, researchers have access to measures of mechanistic targets that have been (or are in the processing of being) validated by SOBC Research Network Members and other experts in the field. The SOBC Validation Process includes three important stages of evaluation for each proposed measure: Identification, Measurement, and Influence.
The first stage of validation requires a measure to be Identified within the field; there must be theoretical support for the specific measure of the proposed mechanistic target or potential mechanism of behavior change. This evidence may include references for the proposed measure, or theoretical support for the construct that the proposed measure is intended to assess. The second stage of validation requires demonstration that the level and change in level of the chosen mechanistic target can be Measured with the proposed measure (assay). For example, if the proposed measure is a questionnaire, the score on the measure should indicate the activity of the target process, and it must have strong psychometric properties. The third stage of validation requires demonstration that the measure can be Influenced; there must be evidence that the measured target is malleable and responsive to manipulation. Evidence relating to each stage includes at least one peer-reviewed publication or original data presentation (if no peer-reviewed research is available to support the claim) and is evaluated by SOBC Research Network Members and experts in the field.
Once a measure has gone through these three stages, it will then either be Validated or Not validated according to SOBC Research Network standards. If a measure is Validated, then change in the measured target was reliably associated with Behavior Change. If a measure is Not validated, then change in the measured target was not reliably associated with Behavior Change. Why would we share measures that are not validated? The SOBC Research Network values open, rigorous, and transparent research. Our goal is to make meaningful progress and develop replicable and effective interventions in behavior change science. Therefore, the SOBC sees value in providing other researchers in the field with information regarding measures that work and measures that fall short for specific targets. Further, a measure that is not validated for one target in one population may be validated in another target or population.
Want to learn more? For any questions regarding the SOBC Validation Process or Measures Repository, please email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Has the mechanism been identified as a potential target for behavior change? This section summarizes theoretical support for the mechanism.
Have the psychometric properties of this measure been assessed? This section includes information such as content validity, internal consistency, and test-retest reliability.
Has a study manipulation led to change in the mechanism? This section addresses evidence that this measure is modifiable by experimental manipulation or clinical intervention.
Has a change in this mechanism been associated with behavior change? This section addresses empirical evidence that causing change in the measure reliably produces subsequent behavior change.