Loss of Control

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Loss of Control (LoC) is a low amount of perceived control over a feedback system. In this thesis is investigated what the neurophysiological correlate of LoC is. Expected is LoC involves two processes: workload and stress. During a well-controlled task we wanted to investigate whether the workload and stress increases more during a condition when a participant receives wrong feedback (LoC) than correct feedback. Workload was measured with EEG and questionnaires, stress was measured with Skin Conductance (SCL), heart rate and subjective measures (questionnaires, performance measures). Participants watched a sequence of visually presented letters and indicated whether or not the current letter was the same letter and the same color as the one (n instances) before. There were 3 conditions: an easy (1-back), a difficult (2-back) and an easy task with LoC (1-back with LoC). SCL increased during the LoC, but increased more during the 2-back task when comparing with the 1-back task. Heart rate also increased during these conditions but not significantly. The questionnaires supported these results, as participants felt more stressed and they had to put more effort in the 1-back task with LoC but more in the 2-back task. The performance of the participants decreased more during the LoC than the 2-back when comparing with the 1-back. The LoC has less effect than a more difficult task.
Faculteit der Sociale Wetenschappen