The influence of emotion on keyboard typing: An experimental study using visual stimuli

Po Ming Lee, Wei Hsuan Tsui, Tzu-Chien Hsiao*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

12 Scopus citations


Background: Emotion recognition technology plays the essential role of enhancement in Human-Computer Interaction (HCI). In recent years, a novel approach for emotion recognition has been reported, which is by keystroke dynamics. This approach can be considered to be rather desirable in HCI because the data used is rather non-intrusive and easy to obtain. However, there were only limited investigations about the phenomenon itself in previous studies. This study aims to examine the source of variance in keystroke typing patterns caused by emotions.Methods: A controlled experiment to collect subjects' keystroke data in different emotional states induced by International Affective Picture System (IAPS) was conducted. Two-way Valence (3) × Arousal (3) ANOVAs were used to examine the collected dataset.Results: The results of the experiment indicate that the effect of emotion is significant (p < .001) in the keystroke duration, keystroke latency, and accuracy rate of the keyboard typing. However, the size of the emotional effect is small, compare to the individual variability.Conclusions: Our findings support the conclusion that the keystroke duration, keystroke latency, and also the accuracy rate of typing, are influenced by emotional states. Notably, the finding about the size of effect suggests that the accuracy rate of the emotion recognition could be further improved if personalized models are utilized. On the other hand, the finding also provides an explanation of why real-world applications which authenticate the identity of users by monitoring keystrokes may not be interfered by the emotional states of users. The experiment was conducted using standard instruments and hence is expected to be highly reproducible.

Original languageEnglish
Article number81
JournalBioMedical Engineering Online
Issue number1
StatePublished - 20 Jun 2014


  • Emotion
  • Human subject experiment
  • International affective picture system
  • Keyboard typing


Dive into the research topics of 'The influence of emotion on keyboard typing: An experimental study using visual stimuli'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this