The domains of research at the BMS lab
The domain of group dynamics
Group dynamics form an important part of the study of human behaviour and thus of the BMS faculty’s work. Within the BMS lab we often encouter studies in either the area of group decision making or text analysis in a group setting. Both focus on the study of group interactions as a method, but use wildly different measurements. Group interactions in decision making commonly use eye-tracking or our very own sociometry app to analyse looking and speaking patterns within a group setting. On the text analysis side recording devices and text to speech and text analysis software are commonplace.
The health domain
Within the health side of the social sciences, the focus is usually on long term effects of technology, innovations for patients and the creation of effective interventions. One will often see the use of methods like , cohort studies, digital questionnaires, Interviews and Ambulant physiological measurements (APM). The areas most common in the BMS faculty within the domain of health are health promotion, exposure therapy, Physiology , Qualitative research and Lonituadal studies. Sensors that m take direct physiological measurements, like a heart rate or skin conductive measurements are commonly used in additions to a wide range of long term observational aids like our very own TIIM app and all types of recording equipment.
Human behaviour research
Human behaviour research is a broad subject, however the main area of study has been risk and safety. How participants weigh and assess risks and interact within various risky or safe environments. Common methodologies are the acceptance test, the use or study of deception and negotiations. Virtual Reality (VR) plays a big role in this field as it allows for highly immersive simulations. The use of heart rate and skin conductive measurements is fairly common within the study of deception and so is the use of interaction analysis through sensors and our own Sociometry app.
Human Machine Interaction domain
Further automation and robotization of our society brings forth a host of new and unique challenges. The domain Human Machine Interactions focuses on those challenges that come into existence when humans and machines interact. In whichever order that might be. How does one for example create trust in self-driving cars? Let those same cars communicate their intention to passersby? And how do designs aid in the work of people? Areas within this domain focus on the Human factors, Ergonomics and Cognitive processing of humans. Together, they answer the questions that lie at the root of the University of Twente’s mission, namely on the interaction between human and machine.
The domain of Learning and Education
The social sciences have a strong tradition of studying the way students and adults learn. Within the domain of learning and education areas of research include group and classroom behaviour, learning behaviour, course and curiculum development and personal development. The BMS lab provides each field of study and area of research with the technological
Marketing research domain
The study of Marketing is a broad domain, containing many areas of study and varied methodologies. At the BMS lab we distinguish two main areas of study within Marketing, consisting of Digital Marketing and Neural Marketing. Common within the area of digital marketing is the Usability type of study, in which the user friendliness of a website, app or design is tested using eye-tracking equipment or screen capturing software. Neuromarketing, on the other hand, is more concerned with the ‘raw’ brain signals and responses by the participant to stimuli, like a new type of ad or perhaps a brand by itself. Common methodologies consist of flow research and the aforementioned usability testing. In most cases neuromarketing uses EEG equipment, to measure the brain activity of participants.
Organizational research domain
The domain of organizational research is interwoven with many fields of study, ranging from psychology to business administration. The domain of organizational research is filled with many disciplines and expertises. They study many types of questions, ranging from workplace behaviour to the adoption of new technologies. Both quantitative and qualitative methods are common. Logistics and participatory research form popular areas of study as well. They fit with the overall trend of using recordings, simulations and interviews for data collection.
Qualitative survey research
Surveys have long been used in the social sciences. The domain of qualitative survey research however focuses on a different type of data than is usually associated with surveys. With qualitative survey research, scientists attempt to gain deeper insights, often through a less tightly structured methodology. This can lead to perspective shifts and the creation of new paradigms. It is therefore often used as a method in exploratory studies and in studies that focus on competences or longitudinal measurements and observations.
Research platform development
One of the BMS lab’s own key research and development areas is the Research platform development. Over the years the lab has created various tools, ranging from our own Career compass software and TIIM and Sociometry apps to the BMS lab dashboard. These are all tools to hold, analyze or design studies and are of great use to scientists in all types of fields.
Virtual Reality (VR) Studies
Virtual Reality has come back into the mainstream focus a few years ago. The advancements in both hardware and software allow for more realistic and interactive simulations. This is especially useful for social scientists, as it allows for the development of Virtual Reality simulations that are consistent and almost completely unaffected by outside influences. These simulations have recently been used to treat phobias and enhance safety.
Want to learn more?
Use the menu to navigate to a section that fits with your research interest. There, we provide more in depth information on possible research methods, measurements instruments and devices and where possible our own experiences. You can always contact the BMS lab and schedule a consultation regarding your project.