Brain Activity (EEG)

When children and adults think, different groups of neurons are activated at the same time. This gives rise to small electro-magnetic signals that can be measured on the surface of the head with the help of small sensors.

Our EEG system uses a net with 128 sensors which is placed on the head just like a hat. It’s very simple and doesn’t require any preparation with the hair. The net comes in different sizes, so that there is a good fit. It takes about 5 minutes to make sure all 128 sensors (which have thin fiber-optic cables imbedded in foam) are in the right place. Then it takes an additional 5-10 minutes for us to do the actual measurement during the study. EEG studies typically show films or images to children while they sit in a child’s seat in front of a computer screen.

A variety of different types of analyses can be done on the signals we measure: which brain areas are active, when different areas are active, and how the frequency of the signal changes. Some examples of what we study with this method are different aspects of visual system development and how children understand others’ behavior.

Children can participate in EEG studies from 2 months and up and all measurements are of course safe for children.