EEG Basic Participant Information and Safety


The brain is made of approximately 100 billion nerve cells, called neurons. Neurons have the amazing ability to gather and transmit electrochemical signals.  With the billions of active neurons, the brain tissue contains a myriad of active current sources that cause the local electrical potential to endlessly fluctuate with a great deal of variability. This electrical brain activity can be observed non-invasively using electroencephalography (EEG).

An EEG is a recording of electrical signals from the brain made by placing electrodes at a person's scalp.  The electrical fluctuations detected over the scalp by EEG are attributed largely to brain tissue located at or near the skull, i.e., their source is the electrical activity of the cerebral cortex, a significant portion of which lies on the outer surface of the brain below the scalp.  The electrodes pick up electric signals naturally produced by the brain and make it possible to observe electrical impulses across the surface of the brain and detect changes over split seconds of time.

EEG or brainwave recordings

To sense and collect the electrical signals of the brain, you will need to don a headset with small electrodes mounted into it.  The activity in the underlying brain tissue is picked up by the electrodes and this information is sent to the computer. This procedure enables us to detect your brainwaves and process this information to make appropriate classifications about your deliberative, non-deliberative mental states and facial expressions. Brainwave recording is safe, non-invasive and completely painless.


EEG or brainwave recording procedures are quite safe and has been in use for over 30 years; it is used routinely in hospitals to test brain function and to diagnose illness such as temporal epilepsy. There are no known major risks associated with this procedure other than a mild discomfort for some people who have sensitive skin when wearing the headset. This is not permanent and is of no serious consequence. Also, if you have any medical condition that you feel will preclude you from participating, please inform Emotiv Lifesciences prior to commencing the Service.

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