Perceptions of positivity and negativity
Perceptions of positivity and negativity associated with a stimulus are fundamental mechanisms that underpin much of our emotional experience. Depending on context, positivity will be indexed via relative activation of the zygomaticus major muscle (associated with smiling) whereas negativity is represented by activation of the corrugator supercilii (associated with frowning). The relative activation of each muscle group is measured to understand the unconscious generation of emotional experience as an adaptive, nuanced and flexible system.
Virtual Reality presents a unique way to understand and measure human reactions by monitoring behaviours and responses to known stimuli. As such, it offers a more cost-effective way to generate ecologically valid environments for research.