EEG alpha activity reflects attentional demands, and beta activity reflects emotional and cognitive processes

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Science  10 May 1985:
Vol. 228, Issue 4700, pp. 750-752
DOI: 10.1126/science.3992243


Two experiments were designed to examine the effects of attentional demands on the electroencephalogram during cognitive and emotional tasks. We found an interaction of task with hemisphere as well as more overall parietal alpha for tasks not requiring attention to the environment, such as mental arithmetic, than for those requiring such attention. Differential hemispheric activation for beta was found most strongly in the temporal areas for emotionally positive or negative tasks and in the parietal areas for cognitive tasks.

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