For optimal functioning in the real world, people must constantly adapt to a fluctuating environment that imposes cognitive demands on them. While tightly controlled lab-based assessments can offer important insights, a better understanding of cognitive processing can be gained by examining individuals in their personally relevant and naturally occurring contexts.

The Affective & Cognitive Regulation (ACR) Lab integrates basic and applied approaches to understand how people can effectively adapt to cognitive and affective challenges present in real-world contexts. We conduct this interdisciplinary work in two different kinds of contexts – socio-emotional stressors and human-technology interactions. We are interested in questions such as how people adapt to the cognitive demands present in real-world contexts and what works for whom. The overarching goal of our research is to facilitate healthy self-regulation, performance, and wellbeing.

Research at the ACR lab is based on an interdisciplinary foundation that leverages multimodal assessment methodologies including behavioral (e.g., eye-tracking and human performance), psychophysiological (e.g., cardiovascular activity and electroencephalography), and self-report (e.g., experience sampling) measures.