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Scientists can see the bias in your brain

March 16, 2020

The strength of alpha brain waves reveals if you are about to make a biased decision, according to research recently published in JNeurosci.

Everyone has bias, and neuroscientists can see what happens inside your brain as you succumb to it. The clue comes from alpha brain waves -- a pattern of activity when the neurons in the front of your brain fire in rhythm together. Alpha brain waves pop up when people make decisions, but it remains unclear what their role is.

Grabot and Kayser used electroencephalography to monitor the brain activity of adults while they made a decision. The participants saw a picture and heard a sound milliseconds apart and then decided which one came first. Prior to the experiment, the researchers determined if the participants possessed a bias for choosing the picture or sound. Before the first stimulus appeared, the strength of the alpha waves revealed how the participants would decide. Weaker alpha waves meant resisting the bias; stronger alpha waves indicated succumbing to the bias.
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Manuscript title: Alpha Activity Reflects the Magnitude of an Individual Bias in Human Perception

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About JNeurosci

JNeurosci, the Society for Neuroscience's first journal, was launched in 1981 as a means to communicate the findings of the highest quality neuroscience research to the growing field. Today, the journal remains committed to publishing cutting-edge neuroscience that will have an immediate and lasting scientific impact, while responding to authors' changing publishing needs, representing breadth of the field and diversity in authorship.

About The Society for Neuroscience

The Society for Neuroscience is the world's largest organization of scientists and physicians devoted to understanding the brain and nervous system. The nonprofit organization, founded in 1969, now has nearly 37,000 members in more than 90 countries and over 130 chapters worldwide.

Society for Neuroscience

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