Graduate Studies


TC 491: Advances in Human‐Computer Interaction: Physiological Computing

Instructor: Dr. Corey Bohil
Credits: 3

An exciting trend in human computer interaction research and development is toward the use of bodybased signals for controlling games and simulations. Currently available consumer products can read a user's brain and muscle activity to provide input to games and other digital media. In the scientific community, as well as in the commercial world, the race is on the develop systems that make sense of body based signals such as heart rate, perspiration, brain activity, and others to create simulations and games that adapt in real time to the user's physical state. These systems complement the recent explosion of body based input devices for naturalistic control (e.g., Nintendo Wii, Xbox 360 Kinect). In this class, students will explore the range of applications of physiological computing. This includes applications for entertainment and games, as well as for creating training simulations that adapt in realtime to the user's state of engagement, stress, mental capacity, and the like. We will also examine applications of this technology for the development of medical applications for rehabilitation, assistive technologies to improve the lives of those with chronic disabilities, and for the development of braincomputer interfaces.

Students will learn the fundamentals of the main physiological signals, including brainwaves (electroencephalography), heart activity (electrocardiogram), muscle activity (electromyogram), and perspiration (electrodermal response; the basis for the "lie detector"). There will be a hands on component to this class. Students will have the opportunity to collect data using physiological recording devices, and explore possibilities for designing applications using this technology.

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