Electronic Theses and Dissertations





Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Science



Committee Chair

Philip Pavlik, Jr.

Committee Member

Jeffrey Sable

Committee Member

Gayle Beck

Committee Member

Roger Kreuz


This study examined EEGs recorded from a single-channel, portable EEG headset (NeuroSky MindWave) during the study period of a paired-associate word paradigm which used Swahili words and their English meanings. It was hypothesized that there would be a significant difference in gamma, theta, and beta band powers for when students recalled words correctly vs. when they did not recall correctly on a subsequent test. There were 35 participants who consisted of students that volunteered at the University of Memphis (20 females and 15 males, 31 of which were right-handed and 4 which were left-handed). A paired-samples t-test suggested that there was a higher mean z-score for brainwave activity during the study period in the high gamma range (41-49.75Hz) for when participants did not recall words correctly on a test, which was opposite of what previous research has found regarding encoding. Based on the results of this study, the MindWave seems to capture muscle activity and/or saccadic behavior that is suggested by higher gamma maximums on average in the study period for word-pairs which resulted in failed recall. Exploratory results may lend insight to future work using portable EEG devices. This study's main objective was to determine if portable EEG devices could be used to determine when students learn new information. Further testing, especially using other portable EEG devices is necessary to answer this question.


Data is provided by the student.

Library Comment

Dissertation or thesis originally submitted to the local University of Memphis Electronic Theses & dissertation (ETD) Repository.