Welcome to HEI-Lab

The concept behind HEI-Lab is rooted in the framework of human-environment interaction, and looks at the mutual effects between human behavior and its contexts.

Our mission is to converge knowledge from Psychology, Design and Videogames into a transdisciplinary scientific platform to study human behavior within this interchangeable view.

Digital technology following psychological principles and created with Design and Engineering processes is HEI-Lab’s signature. Our approach offers the opportunity to explore human behavior by digitally modelling its contextual environment. In the context of mental health care, it is part of an eHealth outlook that has been encouraged by leading political and health organizations (e.g., EC, WHO).

New action lines:

Line 1: Basic processes

HEI-Lab meeting

This line aims at studying basic processes that contribute to the formulation of knowledge within the scope of developing digital processes, products and services (PPS), and setting a new agenda. Line 1 has a special focus on the attentional and emotional processing of relevant environmental stimuli, and further including visual perception and memory, as applied to the context of social, clinical and forensic psychology.

This research line includes studies using experimental paradigms based on digital techniques, and both peripheral (EDA, EMG, ECG) and central (EEG, ERP) psychophysiology measurements, as well as behavior measurements (eye tracking).

Studies focus on the cognitive and emotional processing of hedonic stimuli, namely, biologically relevant stimuli (e.g., phobic stimuli), sexual stimuli (including sexual violent stimuli), technostress stimuli, or social threatening stimuli.

Line 1.1 – Cognitive and emotional processing in diverse contexts

Line 2: Applied research

This research line aims at studying human behavior in different environments (health, organizations, forensic and environment contexts) and life stages, through intervention programs that use digital PPS to promote ecological validity and therapeutic effectiveness.

Intervention programs will target specific needs – in the health and forensic context – and are mostly framed within the CBT approach. Within this regard, we highlight intervention programs on depression, anxiety, dementia, family processes, as well as psychological intervention with victims and offenders.

Line 2.1 – Human behavior and its contexts

Line 2.2 – Assessment and intervention


HEI-Lab online intervention prototype

Line 3: Human-technology interaction (HTI) research

This is a transversal line, aimed at examining human-technology interaction, assisting Line 1 and Line 2. This research line incorporates the contribution of videogame, as a complementary approach, aimed at exploring human-technology interaction challenges and providing optimal solutions for psychological assessment and intervention needs. It is intended that the knowledge about human-technology interaction, in the perspective of the evaluation and understanding of the relationship between the digital world and human behavior, will contribute to solutions and tools more appropriate to the needs of evaluation and intervention.

Line 3.1 – Game Design Fictions in different contexts

Line 3.2 – Game Feel Models and Human Perception

HEI-Lab HTI study

Some of our immersive solutions can be found here

HEI-Lab’s ‘By Laws’ can be found here

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