Frontal interhemispheric asymmetry: Self regulation and individual differences in humans

Elinor Hardman, John Gruzelier, Kate Cheesman, Ceri Jones, David Liddiard, Hans Schleichert, Niels Birbaumer

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Sixteen subjects naive to biofeedback learned lateralised interhemispheric control of slow cortical potentials (SCPs) across electrode sites F3-F4 during three sessions of visual electroencephalograph (EEG) biofeedback. Subjects were required to generate slow negativity shifts either towards the left or the right hemisphere in sixty pseudorandomly ordered trials per session. Group 1 (n = 8) were told to use emotional strategies in the task (positive emotions for left hemisphere activation, negative emotion for right hemisphere activation), group 2 received no guidance. Both groups received feedback in the form of an on-screen rocket-ship, initially centrally placed, which rose to indicate an increase in left hemisphere negativity (relative to the right hemisphere) and fell to indicate an increase in right hemisphere negativity (relative to the left hemisphere). A 2 x 3 x 3 x 2 ANOVA (group x session x block x trial) showed no performance differences between the strategy and no strategy groups. Both groups learned to produce correct direction shifts in the final third of each session during both trial types (P <0.001). The no strategy group showed a particularly strong within session learning effect (P <0.0037) with poor performance in the early part of the sessions, and strong shifts at the end. Subjects high on withdrawal showed stronger rightward shifts in keeping with right hemisphere involvement in behavioural withdrawal. This is the first demonstration of self regulation of interhemispheric frontal asymmetry.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)117-120
Number of pages4
JournalNeuroscience Letters
Issue number2-3
Publication statusPublished - Jan 17 1997


  • individual differences
  • interhemispheric frontal asymmetry
  • self regulation
  • slow cortical potentials

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Neuroscience(all)


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