The Status of the Vicarious Fear Learning Project

Hello everyone,

At this point data collection for my project is well under way. Things that were not working well have been adjusted and now it is just a matter of collecting the data I need! One nice thing about my project is that, aside from giving verbal instructions, the majority of it is automated. AcqKnowledge, the computer program I’m using to collect physiological and event-related data, can be set up to record event-related data. So, rather than needing to manually record what is happening on the participant’s computer, the computer does that for me. This takes a lot of the burden off of the experimenter and also decreases the amount of error associated with manual data manipulation.

One concern I had about the project was the believability of the procedure. I wasn’t sure if participants would actually believe that they would receive aversive stimuli. Based on preliminary self-report data, I’ve found that this is not a concern at all. Participants do believe they will receive the aversive stimuli even though they never actually receive those stimuli. The procedure depends on this so I’m happy to report no issues there. Good news all around. I’m excited to discover what these data convey.