New PhD project with Casper Pedersen on establishing situated and generalizable models of stress

October 2020

Casper Pedersen has been awarded a PhD studentship from the University of Glasgow’s Center for Doctoral Training in Socially Intelligent Artificial Agents.  Casper’s supervisory team includes Christoph Scheepers and Lawrence Barsalou (University of Glasgow) and Aleksandar Matic (Koa Health). 

In this project, we combine Generalizability Theory and the Situated Assessment Method to build models of an individual’s distress and eustress.  Of central interest is using this model to measure, predict, and change levels of distress and eustress over time.  At multiple timepoints, individuals provide data about distress and eustress in specific life situations, together with data about associated stress mechanisms.  Our modeling tools then provide feedback to individuals about their stress levels, together with the most highly related stress mechanisms. 

Of central interest is using this information help individuals better understand how distress and eustress emerge in specific life situations.  As individuals become increasingly tuned into their stress experience, they can then use this understanding to initiate various coping strategies and interventions for changing it.  A central goal of this work is identifying methods for shifting experiences of distress to eustress.  We also plan to explore the use of wearable technology that captures physiological data to support measuring, predicting, and changing stress.

To further develop this collaborative effort between academia and industry, we have received additional funding from the University of Glasgow’s Knowledge Exchange Fund (along with the funding from the Center for Doctoral Training).