University of Twente Student Theses


Using Neurophysiological Signals to Measure Social Exclusion Induced by a Language Barrier

Gouweleeuw, K. (2021) Using Neurophysiological Signals to Measure Social Exclusion Induced by a Language Barrier.

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Abstract:Universities are becoming more international which calls for good communication between international teams. However, people often fall back on their mother tongue when they cannot express themselves well enough in another language, thus socially excluding the people around them that cannot understand them. This thesis endeavours to determine to what extent this social exclusion induced by a language barrier reflects in neurophysiological signals (Electroencephalogram (EEG), Heart Rate (HR), Galvanic Skin Response (GSR)). An experiment has been conducted in which three participants worked together to solve riddles. During this experiment, two participants communicated with each other in a language the third participant did not understand, thereby socially excluding them. It was hypothesised that the two participants that could understand each other would show higher synchrony in the measured neurophysiological signals compared to the socially excluded participant with these two participants. The EEG results indicate that this synchrony is best reflected in the central brain region, although not with a significant difference. Both the HR and GSR analyses also indicate that there is a difference between the socially excluded participant and the other two participants. However, this difference is only significant for some experiments. Further investigation is needed to draw definitive conclusions.
Item Type:Essay (Master)
Faculty:EEMCS: Electrical Engineering, Mathematics and Computer Science
Subject:50 technical science in general, 77 psychology
Programme:Interaction Technology MSc (60030)
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