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Database of Emotional Movies and its Application in Temperamental Studies

Database of Emotional Moviesand its Application in Temperamental Studies

principal investigator
Pamela Sobczak

project value: PLN 199,188
funding source : Ministry of Education and Science
discipline: psychology
research center: Institute of Psychology
location: Warsaw
duration: 2015 2016 2017 2018 2019 2020

An attempt to understand emotional responses and a nature of determined temperament dates back to the Ancient Greece. Modern science applies many research methods for studies of emotional behaviors, including simple psychophysical measurements, the use of electrophysiology and the latest discoveries in molecular genetics and neuroimaging. The prompts most often used in this type of research are visual and static affective stimuli e.g. pictures (e.g. International Affective Picture System (IAPS) database, Lang database and others, 2001) or word databases (e.g. Nencki Affective Word List, Riegel word database and others, 2015). During the project, a SWPS University student, Pamela Sobczak, will create a database of emotional films.

 

Research Project

Database of Emotional Movies

and its Application in Temperamental Studies

 

 

 

Research Unit
UNI SWPS english
Grant Amount
199 188 PLN
Funding Source
MNiSW logo EN

Duration of Research Project: 2015-2018

An attempt to understand emotional responses and a nature of determined temperament dates back to the Ancient Greece. Modern science applies many research methods for studies of emotional behaviors, including simple psychophysical measurements, the use of electrophysiology and the latest discoveries in molecular genetics and neuroimaging. The prompts most often used in this type of research are visual and static affective stimuli e.g. pictures (e.g. International Affective Picture System (IAPS) database, Lang database and others, 2001) or word databases (e.g. Nencki Affective Word List, Riegel word database and others, 2015). During the project, a SWPS University student, Pamela Sobczak, will create a database of emotional films.

Research objectives

Only few such databases have been created so far. They are made up mostly of selected fragments of movies which are well-known and commercial (e.g. The Emotional Movie Database (EMDB), 2012) or they rely on available short movies from Apple Quick Time HD Gallery or YouTube (Nishimoto S., i.a., 2011). Results of those studies are very promising; however, it’s worth noticing that in the case of static stimuli, the aim was to create new, standardized databases, which cannot be said about so far used dynamic stimuli. Familiarity with well-known movies and popular actors has a big influence on the reliability of results. It may stem from viewer’s individual experiences and memories associated with presented scene.

It’s noteworthy that such databases haven’t been used for studies of temperament and individual differences.

The main aim of the research project is to create innovative and standardized research tool — emotional movies database — which apart from its general purpose (studies of emotional information processing), will be also used for studies of temperament and individual differences, using not only classic research methods.

Research method

New and standardized database of silent, emotional movies will be created within suggested research project. Movies will be made according to basic categories of emotions.

The movies database will consist of 60 short movies (each lasting 45 seconds). Movies will be divided into determined categories:

  • Positive — 20 movies focusing on positive human interactions and on positive, social portrayal.
  • Negative — 20 movies focusing on negative human interactions and social anxiety.
  • Neutral — 20 movies focusing on demonstration of urban landscapes, neutral interactions and scenes with no evident facial expression.
    In the second stage of the research, which will be based on the use of functional magnetic resonance imaging, control groups with different level of emotional reactivity will be compared according to The Regulative Theory of Temperament (RTT, 1974). Patterns of hemodynamic response function will be created for statistical analysis, for each movie with the consideration of temperament measurements and category of emotion for each person and a group. Additionally, statistical parametric maps of brain activity localization will be prepared and correlated with emotional information processing; it will be wrought with consideration temperament measurements and category of emotion.

Impact of results

Suggested research project is in many ways innovative and has two main goals. Firstly, an execution of the research will enable better understanding of moderating role of temperament in the processing of affective stimuli on the basis of advanced neuroimaging techniques. Secondly, due to a lack of appropriate research tool, it will be necessary to create and develop a new database of affective movies that will be adjusted to e.g. neuroimaging research, controlling variables related with social stimuli.