by Jade Turner, Peyton Dunow, Samara Wong, Julie Boynton
Faculty mentor: Dr. Emily Stanley
Previous research has found that moderate levels of exercise are related to improved cognitive functioning, along with increased P3 (stimulus evaluation) and decreased N2 (response monitoring), which are components of error processing. Previous studies have also shown an enhanced effect of exercise on executive functioning. The present study aims to determine whether athletes will have a smaller error-related negativity (ERN), another aspect of error processing, than non-athletes. This study will include giving the Flanker task while connected to an electroencephalogram (EEG), having participants bike for fifteen minutes, completing the Flanker task again, and measuring positive and negative affect, mental toughness, and intrinsic motivation as possible mediators. We hypothesize that participants who fit in the athletic category and all participants’ second trial will make fewer mistakes overall on the Flanker task and have a smaller ERN. We will also explore other factors to look for mediation in the relationship.