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Business and social sciences resources

About the BRAINS Lab

The 'Behavioural Research Analytics In Neurotechnological Systems' (BRAINS) Lab, is a nationally leading research and innovation facility that pioneers the convergence of behavioural sciences, user experience research and next-generation technologies.

Through cutting-edge research and partnerships, The BRAINS Lab aims to define an ethical, inclusive and sustainable digital future and enhance our collective capacity and capability to mitigate harms and tackle major societal challenges.

Please note: The BRAINS Lab was previously named The Behavioural Science and Creative Insights Lab.

Our Facilities

Observation suite

  • Equipment: 3 HD cameras, microphones, roundtable and 8 chairs, large display screen, external PC in the control station, Tobii Pro Glasses 2 (Live View 50 Hz Wireless) mobile eye-tracker, Emotiv EPOC X Model 3.0 - 14-Channel Wireless EEG headset, Emotiv Insight 2.0 - 5-Channel Wireless EEG headset and the Shimmer3 GSR+ (Galvanic Skin Response) device.
  • Software: Noldus Media Recorder, Noldus Observer XT, Tobii Pro Lab Analyzer software, Emotiv PRO software toolkit, Consensys and iMotions software.
  • Integrations: Add on EEG, heart rate and skin conductance. We can uniquely record and analyse flow states through action and physical gestures.
  • Purpose: Ideal for generating behavioural insights and can be used for evaluating the multichannel branded user experience, product testing, creativity and problem-solving, focus groups and teamwork.

Pop-up VR suite

  • Equipment: Varjo Aero VR headset with embedded pupillometry, Ultraleap Leap Motion Controller 2 hand tracking camera, 2x VIVE hand-controllers and 4x SteamVR 2.0 base stations.
  • Software: Varjo Base, Unity and iMotions software.
  • Integrations: Add on EEG, heart rate and skin conductance and/or set up in the Observation Suite. We can uniquely record and analyse synchronous virtual stimuli and physical gestures.
  • Purpose: Ideal for studying user behaviour in virtual environments.

Gaze and emotion tracking pod

  • Equipment: Tobii Pro Nano 60Hz eye-tracker, RED250 Mobile remote eye-tracking station and two high-spec PCs.
  • Software: Tobii Pro Lab Full Edition software, SMI Experiment Centre, SMI BeGaze and Noldus FaceReader software.
  • Integrations: Add on additional biosensors such as EEG, heart rate and skin conductance. We can uniquely cross-validate self-reports with sub-conscious psycho-physiological insights.
  • Purpose: Ideal for generating behavioural insights on how people interact with websites, services, marketing or calls to action. Eye-tracking and facial expression analysis can provide insights into attention, engagement, and emotional reactions. Additional biosensors can be integrated to provide a deeper understanding.

Networked computer suite

  • Equipment: 29 networked workstations in individual baffled cubicles with headphones.
  • Software: E-prime 3, Z-tree and LanSchool.
  • Integrations: Add on bespoke behavioural science or behavioural economics tasks such as the implicit association test (IAT) to uncover hidden biases in the workplace or in marketing materials or the Ultimatum Game to provide insights into fairness and negotiation or pricing dynamics.
  • Purpose: Ideal for conducting behavioural economic research to gain insights into consumer behaviour, improve marketing strategies, enhance customer experiences, and make more informed decisions regarding product development and pricing strategies.

Staff

If you are a member of staff interested in making use of this facility for your research or your teaching, or if you are interested in learning more about behavioural research analytics, behavioural science and people-centred design research, get in touch with the BRAINS Lab.

Students

If you are interested in learning more about behavioural science and behavioural analytics, to express your interest in receiving invitations to participate in studies conducted by researchers working in the BRAINS Lab.

Psychology labs and facilities

Researchers in psychology benefit from a number of purpose-built research laboratories and a wide range of state-of-the-art equipment.

Specialist laboratories include a fully-equipped high-resolution EEG laboratory (BioSemi ActiveTwo 64+8+2 channel system). For studies of brain stimulation using tDCS, we have two NeuroConn DC-STIMULATOR PLUS probes. Real-time physiological monitoring is provided by a Biopac MP100 Physiological monitoring system (primarily used to measure galvanic skin response, respiration and cardiovascular function).

One laboratory is set up for psychopharmacological studies, such as tests of drug effects on eating behaviour, and includes equipment for drug preparation and storage, drug administration and the measurement of drug responses. Portable psychophysiological monitors of blood pressure, GSR, and blood-alcohol concentration are also available. Daytime and night-time activity can be measured via online actigraphs (MotionWatch 8, CamNtech).

There are two laboratories dedicated to eye-tracking research: one is equipped with an Eyelink 1000 high-resolution eye-tracker; a second (primarily used for studies with children and infants) is equipped with two eye-trackers, a Tobii T-120 eye-tracker and a Tobii X2-60 eye-tracker. For field research offsite, researchers use a mobile eye-tracker (Tobii Smart IR plus Tobii Studio Enterprise Edition).

Neurocognitive testing is provided by two CANTABeclipse tablet-based (touchscreen) neuropsychological test batteries, and we also subscribe to the online CANTAB neuropsychological test platform. Cognitive testing is also provided by the web-based Inquisit application. Additionally, the department has developed its own bespoke platform for online psychological testing.

Studies of physiological and psychological influences on driving performance are conducted using a driving simulator in a dedicated laboratory (XPDS-RS simulator from XPI Simulation). The department's facilities also include state-of-the-art behavioural monitoring in a dedicated observation room with a separate digital viewing/editing suite (configured by Tracksys with Observer XT 11.0 monitoring applications). The observation lab is used for studies of problem solving, group processes and developmental psychology. One laboratory is configured to support studies of babies and infants.

To facilitate the management of recruitment to psychology studies we subscribe to the web-based ‘Sona Systems' research participant management application. A dedicated Psychology Store room houses the psychometric test bank (for loan; over 100 tests). Laptops are available for offsite testing with E-Prime and Superlab software; Psychology staff and students also have access to Adobe Photoshop CS3 Extended for image processing (e.g. for face recognition studies), Cooledit and Presentations software, Observer XT Video Pro, Observer Facereader and NVivo. We also have individual and networked access to MatLab. The School subscribes to Qualtrics for the development and distribution of online surveys and experiments. Find out more.