Behavioral Neuroscience Applied: A Practice Intervention with College Students Using Orienting and Interoception for Stress Management and Self-Regulation

Developed from the latest behavioral neuroscience, a virtual, somatic-based intervention was piloted on undergraduate students who were taught and then practiced two somatic, mindfulness skills by video. Our hypothesis was that learning and practicing these two skills would build self-regulation and resiliency in the face of stress, as evidenced by physiological markers.

Heart rate, skin conductance, heart rate variability, and respiratory sinus arrhythmia were collected via EKG in a lab setting at the beginning and end of the intervention. Students practiced these skills along with the video once a day for one week in the context of their every day lives. We found significant results in stress reduction and RSA response to practicing these somatic skills, with a strong correlation between self-reported reduction in stress and RSA responsivity to the somatic practices.

This project was a 2020 recipient of the American Association fo University Women's Research Publication Grant 

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