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Interaction Lab


Established in Fall 2012, The Department of Communication Studies’ Interaction Lab (210D, 210E and 221 Armstrong Hall) features an observation room and data chamber that provide the faculty and graduate students of our department a secure and robust environment to collect data for their research. The space is designed to accommodate research on media uses and effects as well as interpersonal communication and relational dynamics research.  


Our research team maintains an active research and theory blog where we release drafts of research reports and discuss other media- and technology-related issues.

#ixlab Notes blog

Media Observation Room
(210D Armstrong Hall)

ixlab For more information on the Interaction Lab (#ixlab), please contact  Dr. Nick Bowman.

The observation room is our primary area for data collection. It is designed to accommodate two media users in a comfortable environment, and can be rearranged to focus on dyadic interactions.

  • High-end electronics, including a 46-inch 3D-capable television, Blu-Ray player and other computing and gaming equipment
  • Tablet PCs (Android, Apple, and Microsoft) for electronic data collection and storage, as well as individualized stimulus presentation and control
  • Research licenses for MediaLab v2012 and DirectRT
  • NeuroSky electroencephalography (EEG) brainwave analytical tools, for studying attention and focus during media interactions.
  • One-way mirror for unobtrusive behavioral coding
  • Closed-circuit audio and video recording equipment
  • Noldus FaceReader compatibility
  • Noldus Observer compatibility, including screen capture from the television
  • Attractive, comfortable furnishings to provide a more naturalistic environment for research

Data Chamber 
(210E Armstrong Hall)

The data chamber is the primary workstation for the Interaction lab. Each workstation is equipped with SPSS 19.0 and the Microsoft Office suite, as well as other proprietary research programs. There is also a one-way mirror for discrete observation of research activity in 210D (the observation room).

  • Three privacy workstations for data entry and content analysis
  • Three licenses for MediaLab v2012
  • Removable privacy shields for collaborative computing work
  • One production workstation with Adobe Creative Suite for creating printed and multimedia study materials
  • Virtual and physical data storage space

Research Suite 
(221 Armstrong Hall)

  • Five privacy workstations for data entry and content analysis
  • MindWave compatability, to record various psychophysiological metrics (EEG, GSR, and others); this system is portable for field data collection
  • Closed-circuit audio and video recording equipment
  • Noldus FaceReader compatibility
  • Noldus Observer compatibility
  • Mounted and transparent whiteboards for focus group work, in all data collection rooms