The Handbook of Emotion Elicitation and Assessment
Oxford University Press Series in Affective Science
James A. Coan and John J. B. Allen, Editors


Detailed Prospectus

Updated List of Confirmed Authors

Instructions for Contributors


The book is intended to include three major sections, those being Eliciting Stimuli, Assessment Approaches, and Methods in Assessing the Physiological Underpinnings of Emotion.  Each section, with proposed chapters, is outlined below.


Chapter 1.  Introductory chapter by James Coan and John Allen





Chapter 2.  Emotion Elicitation using Film Clips


This chapter asks the questions, what clips have been used?  How have they been evaluated and/or standardized?  Where are they available?  How are they optimally implemented as emotional stimuli?  This chapter discusses standard methods of using film clips as emotional stimuli, and where such standard methods do not exist, provides recommendations for the proper implementation of such methods.  If possible from a copyright standpoint, clips will be included on a DVD disk.


Basic Question:  How does one select, evaluate and implement film clips as tools in emotion elicitation?


Confirmed authors:  Jonathan Rottenberg, Rebecca Ray, and James Gross


Chapter 3.  The International Affective Picture System and the International Affective Digitized Sounds.


This would be an original chapter explaining the development, current psychometrics, and standard implementation of the IAPS images.This chapter should also include a secondary discussion of the IADS that covers much of the same ground.  The IADS qualifies as secondary due to the limited amount of information regarding it relative to the IAPS.


Basic Question:  What are the IAPS and IADS, and how does one properly use them in emotion research?


Confirmed Authors:  Margaret Bradley and Peter Lang


Chapter 4. The Directed Facial Action Technique


Research has shown that voluntary facial movements cross-culturally associated with certain basic or modal emotions can serve as sufficient conditions for generated emotional responses.   The Directed Facial Action (DFA) technique takes advantage of this fact for use in laboratory experiments on emotion. This chapter describes the DFA Technique in enough detail to allow researchers to use it in their own work.


Basic Question:  What is the Directed Facial Action technique and how is it properly implemented?


Confirmed Author:  Paul Ekman


Chapter 5.  Emotional Behavior As Emotional Stimuli


Numerous studies support the notion that emotional behavior can serve as a sufficient condition for emotion elicitation.  Such emotional behavior includes, but is not limited to, remembering emotional events, imagining emotional situations, voluntarily performing emotional facial expressions, and enacting emotional body postures.  This chapter describes common methods for eliciting emotion using emotional behavior, and provides methodological recommendations for the most effective implementation of such methods.


Basic Question:  What are the most common procedures for using emotional behaviors to elicit emotional experiences, and how are these procedures most effectively implemented?


Confirmed author:  James Laird and Sarah Strout



Chapter 6.   Masked Emotional Stimuli.


An increasingly important question in the evocation of emotions and/or emotion-related states is the function of emotional stimuli that are not consciously perceived.  This kind of research presents unique methodological challenges.  The purpose of this chapter would be to outline those challenges, and provide specific recommendations for overcoming them.  If possible, sets of widely used masked stimuli and the programs for presenting them will be included on the DVD.


Basic Question:  When would one wish to use masked stimuli, how does one properly mask emotional stimuli, such that emotional reactions may be obtained outside of emotional awareness, and how does one assess the success of the masking?


Confirmed author:  Arne Öhman & Stefan Wiens


Chapter 7.  Social Psychological Strategies for Emotion Induction


Social Psychology has provided us with a host of creative strategies for inducing emotion.  These strategies are particularly useful for emotions that are difficult to elicit in the laboratory (such as anger), emotions that are contextually complex (e.g., embarrassment) or for research programs that emphasize the “mundane realism” of experimentally elicited emotions.  This chapter introduces the reader to social psychological principles underlying such strategies, and makes recommendations for their use and implementation. Relevant verbatim instructions will be included on the DVD.


Basic Question:  What types of social psychologically based emotional stimulus procedures exist and how would one properly implement each of them?


Confirmed author:  Eddie Harmon-Jones


Chapter 8.  Emotion Elicitation Using Dyadic Interaction Tasks


Dyadic interaction tasks have long been recognized as being powerful methods of eliciting ecologically valid emotional responses.  Such tasks have involved conflict discussions among romantic couples, parent-child interactions, peer interactions and so forth.  The proper implementation of dyadic interaction tasks involves a host of methodological considerations, such as, but not limited to, ways to minimize threats to internal validity, ways to ensure emotionally salient interaction within dyads, and optimal methods for collecting data during such tasks (video monitoring, psychophysiological recording, etc.).  This chapter reviews the specific methods involved in dyadic interaction tasks, and makes recommendations for researchers regarding their proper implementation.


Basic Question:  What are the specific methodological issues surrounding the use of dyadic interaction tasks in the elicitation of emotion, and how are such tasks properly implemented?


Confirmed authors:   Nicole Roberts, Jeanne Tsai, and James Coan


Chapter 9.  Music as a Means of Modifying Mood.


An interesting and under-explored method of emotion elicitation regards the use of affectively charged music.  Because of its ubiquity in the daily lives of people the world over, such an elicitation procedure may increase the mundane realism of a mood or emotion induction supplementary to, or independent of, other elicitation approaches.  In this chapter, a complete description of the Continuous Music Technique for emotion and mood elicitation is provided, along with a brief history of the uses of this technique.  If possible, sets of previously used audio clips will be included as MP3 files on the DVD.


Basic Question:  What is the Continuous Music Technique, and how is it properly implemented?


Confirmed author: Joycelin Ng & Eric Eich


Chapter 10.  The Use of Primary Reinforcers and Punishers in Emotion Induction


Primary reinforcers and punishers require no learning in order to stimulate emotional responses both positive and negative.   They constitute stimuli that animals—including humans—find instinctively and intrinsically reinforcing or punishing due to their links to survival.  A partial list of primary reinforces and punishers likely includes both positive and negative odors and flavors, sounds and images, extreme temperatures, perceived access to oxygen, the loudness of a noise, and even—though not strictly primary—money.  This chapter discusses primary reinforcers and punishers in the context of emotion research to date.  It proceeds to outline how these sorts of reinforcers and punishers are utilized and properly understood within the broad context of emotion induction.


Basic Question:  What are the primary reinforcers and punishers related to emotion and how are they properly used in emotion induction?


Confirmed author:  Edmund Rolls




Chapter 11.  Assessing Positive and Negative Affect via Self Report


Various approaches exist for assessing positive and negative affect, including the Positive and Negative Affect Schedule.  Psychometric data and a brief review of the history and implementation of the various scales will be provided. PDF versions of each of the scales will be included on the DVD. 


Basic Question: What are the pragmatic and psychometric considerations in assessing positive and negative affect, and what scales are suited for evaluating emotional experience?


Confirmed Authors:  Elizabeth Gray and David Watson


Chapter 12.  The Self-Assessment Manikin (SAM) Scales


A full description of the Self-Assessment Manikin (SAM) Scales, including psychometric data and a brief review of the history and implementation of the scales will be provided.  , A PDF reproduction of the valence and arousal scales, as well as the interactive computer version of the SAM will be included on the DVD-ROM.


Basic Question:  What are the different forms of the SAM scales, and how are they properly used?


Confirmed Author:  Ed Cook


Chapter 13.  Information Processing Approaches to Emotion Research


Various procedures have been proposed as means to tap aspects of information processing and cognition in emotional contexts.  Such measures include, among others, the emotional Stroop task, probe reaction time measures, implicit association tasks, and affective priming.  This chapter reviews these measures, and provides detailed instructions for implementing them.


Basic Question:  What information processing methods have been used in the service of emotion research, and how are they properly implemented?


Confirmed Author: Colin MacLeod, Elizabeth M. Rutherford, & Lynlee W. Campbell


Chapter 14.  The Facial Action Coding System (FACS). 


he Facial Action Coding System (FACS) is described in sufficient detail that emotion researchers can understand the basis of the FACS, the numerical listing of the discrete facial movements identified by the system, the evaluative psychometrics of the system, and the recommended training requirements, as well as detailed information on how to acquire the FACS manual and complete the FACS certification process.  If possible, a sample of the classic Ekman FACS faces should be available on the companion DVD-ROM.


Basic Question:  What is coded using the FACS, how does one become a competent FACS coder, and what are the practical issues surrounding FACS coding (e.g., equipment, coding conditions, etc.) 


Confirmed Author:  Jeffrey Cohn


Chapter 15.  Measuring Emotion-Related Vocal Acoustics


There are many qualities of vocal expression that indicate emotional states in concert with, and independently of, verbal content, facial expression, and other manifestations of emotion.  The coding of vocal acoustics presents special methodological challenges.  This chapter outlines methods for devising experimental protocols that are amenable to coding vocal acoustics, and details approaches for implementing such coding.


Basic Question:  How are vocal acoustics studied and assessed in the context of emotion research?


Confirmed Author: Michael J. Owren and Jo-Anne Bachorowski


Chapter 16.  The Specific Affect Coding System


The Specific Affect (SPAFF) Coding System was developed as a quick and efficient means of classifying observed emotional behavior based on facial expression, voice tone and pitch and verbal content.  Originally designed to code marital interaction, the SPAFF has continuously evolved and since its original development has been applied to analyses of psychotherapist/client interactions, sibling interactions, parent/child interactions and other emotion communication situations.  This chapter outlines the specifics of the system and offers recommendations for its implementation, including training and minimum requisite equipment.


Basic Question:  What is coded using the SPAFF, how does one become a competent SPAFF coder, and what are the practical issues surrounding SPAFF coding (e.g., equipment, coding conditions, etc.)


Confirmed Authors:  James Coan and John Gottman


Chapter 17.  Studying the Time Course of Affective Episodes Using the Affect Rating Dial


An increasingly important question in emotion research regards the time course of emotional experiences, both normatively and ideographically.  One promising approach has been the use of the Affect Rating Dial.  This chapter outlines the construction and use of this device and outlines methods for its use. 


Basic Question:  What is the Affect Rating Dial, how is it properly implemented, and what kind of data analytic approaches most appropriately evaluate the data it generates?


Confirmed Author:  Anna Ruef


Chapter 18.  Interview Methods in Emotion Research.


Extant emotional interviews and “experience sampling” techniques are reviewed.  Methodological pitfalls of this sort of assessment are discussed.  Guidelines for implementing emotional interviews are presented.


Basic Question:  What are the best ways to interview an individual about his or her emotional experiences?


Confirmed Author:  Nancy Stein


Chapter 19.  Studying Emotion in Real World Contexts with the Time Sampling Diary.


An important area of emotion research regards the investigation of emotional reactions to daily events in people’s natural environments, such as stressful working conditions, difficult family situations, economic downturns, etc. The study of emotional reactions to real world and unplanned events presents a host of methodological considerations, many of which are addressed in Time Sampling Diary (TSD) approaches to emotion assessment. The TSD is reviewed, and recommendations are made for its use, as well as for the investigation of emotion in field settings. 


Basic Question:  What is the Time Sampling Diary, how is it properlyutilized, and what kinds of broader methodological issues merit consideration when an ecological approach to the study of emotion is employed?


Confirmed author: Hermann Brandstätter


Chapter 20.  Methodological Considerations in the Study of Cultural Differences in Emotion


Much has been debated in the literature regarding the degree to which the experience and expression of emotion is similar or different as a function of culture.  The degree to which culture exerts a causal influence on emotional experience and expression can be difficult to determine.  In this chapter, methodological approaches and recommendations are made for the study of cultural differences in emotion research.


Basic Question:  What kinds of methodological considerations should individuals who wish to conduct cross-cultural research on emotion be aware of?


Confirmed Author:  David Matsumoto and Seung Hee Yoo


Chapter 21.  Assessing Emotion in Infants and Young Children


The study of emotion in infants and children presents a host of methodological challenges, ranging from pragmatic considerations such as parental permissions to theoretical and ethical issues related to emotion elicitation.  This chapter outlines these and other issues related to the study of emotion in infants and children.


Basic Question:  What special issues arise in conducting emotion research with infants and children, and how best are these addressed?


Confirmed author:  Nathan Fox and Heather Henderson


Chapter 22.  Conceptual, Theoretical and Methodological Issues in Inferring Subjective Emotional Experience:  Recommendations for Researchers.


Among the most difficult problems in emotion research is the measurement of subjective emotional experience.  Though many measures assume that experience reports represent actual experience, a host of theoretical and, by extension, methodological issues warrant consideration by researchers interested in subjective emotional experience.  This chapter reviews these issues and makes recommendations for identifying the conditions under which inferring subjective emotional experience from subjective emotional experience reports may or may not be justified.


Basic Question:  What are the methodological constraints in inferring veridical emotional experience from subjective reports, and how can these constraints be overcome or minimized?


Confirmed Author:  Alfred Kaszniak and Lis Nielsen





The following chapters are not intended to be comprehensive reviews of these approaches to the study of emotion.  Rather, they are a pragmatic set of chapters detailing the training, expertise, equipment, funding, etc. that are required, at minimum, to use these methods. These chapters should be considered heuristic guides for researchers contemplating work in each area.



Chapter 23.  Studying Emotion in Animals:  Methods, Materials and Training


This chapter outlines the many practical and pragmatic issues in studying emotion in animals, such as proper training and expertise, storage facilities, basic equipment, animal welfare, etc.  Methodological considerations specific to the study of laboratory animals are discussed.  This chapter is intended for researchers who wish to explore the study of animals in emotion research.  It will provide a necessary overview for individuals in the planning stages of such research. 


Basic Question:  What kinds of facilities and practical considerations are necessary, at minimum, to conduct competent animal research in emotion?


Confirmed author:  Katalin M. Gothard and Nathan J. Emery


Chapter 24.  The Psychophysiological Laboratory


This chapter provides an outline for the fundamental requirements underlying psychophysiological research in terms of training, equipment and (very basic) procedures.  It is intended to serve as an introduction to the psychophysiological laboratory for researchers who are considering psychophysiological research. 


Basic question: What kinds of training, expertise, and facilities are required, and what are the practical considerations in conducting sound psychophysiological research?


Confirmed author:  John Allen


Chapter 25.  Strategies for Studying the Effects of Brain Damage on Emotion


An extremely fruitful area in the study of emotion and the brain has been the study of brain lesions.  This work presents some specific guidelines for this kind of research, in terms of required expertise, methodological considerations and data analytic approaches. 


Basic Question:  What are the most important training, practical and methodological considerations facing emotion researchers who wish to study brain damaged patients?


Confirmed author:  Ralph Adolphs


Chapter 26.  Brain Imaging in the Study of Emotion: Conceptual and Methodological Considerations.


Brain imaging is gaining momentum as one of the most important methods in emotion research.  At the same time, perhaps no other method entails as many detailed methodological considerations and training requirements.  This chapter introduces researchers to basic competence requirements, as well as methodological and practical issues surrounding imaging research in emotion.


Basic Question:  What kinds of training, facilities and practical considerations are necessary, at minimum, to conduct sound neuroimaging research?


Confirmed Author:  Richard Davidson


Chapter 27.  Biological Substrates of Emotion:  Conceptual and Methodological Considerations


Naïve researchers investigating the psychobiology of emotion frequently make the error of assuming that the identification of a physiological or neuropsychological correlate of emotion is tantamount to identifying a physiological or neuropsychological substrate of emotion.  This common mistake derives from a misunderstanding of physiological and neuropsychological processes as well as the inferential weight frequently given to “biological” measures in the study of psychological constructs.  This chapter offers a methodologically oriented discussion of the distinction between a correlate and a substrate and discusses the importance of maintaining this distinction in making inferences about the biological underpinnings of emotions and emotion-related constructs.


Basic Question:  How are biological correlates of emotion different from biological substrates, and why is the distinction important?


Confirmed Authors:  John Allen and John Cacioppo


Chapter 28. The Royal Road to Emotion: Pitfalls and Potholes


Confirmed Author:  Bob Levenson


Chapter 29.  Making the Most of Modern Methods


This chapter closes the book with a general discussion of areas in need of the development, including innovative methodological approaches as well as increasingly flexible data analytic approaches capable of handling the kinds of data that newer methods may generate.  This will be especially true as measures are developed that assess how emotional processes unfold over time. Recommendations are made for future directions in emotion measurement and analysis.


Basic Question:  What was it hoped that this book would accomplish, and what are the important methodological considerations facing emotion researchers in the future of emotion research?


Confirmed Authors:  James Coan and John Allen



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Last Updated 26 April, 2005