INSPIRE Core Facility

University of Ottawa, Ottawa, Ontario
What the facility does

Integrated Neurocognitive and Social Psychophysiology Interdisciplinary Research Environment (INSPIRE)

Areas of expertise

From simple surveys to complex experimental tasks, INSPIRE encompasses a multidisciplinary research facility designed to study people’s thoughts, behaviours, and physiological reactions. Researchers can monitor and remote control multiple workstations, recording various psychophysiological data that can be synchronized with a large variety of individual or group experimental tasks. Participants’ perceptions, opinions, thought processes and emotions can be assessed in response to various visual or auditory stimuli.

This core facility has four sectors of expertise. First, it manages and provides access to a large research pool of human participants, comprised of undergraduate students (upwards of 20 000 participation opportunities per year). Second, it maintains and provides access to physical testing space, including equipment for computer-driven stimulus presentation and access to psychophysiological hardware. Third, it provides access to platforms for online research. Finally, it manages and provides access to a large research pool of human participants, comprised of children and adults from the general population.

Research services
  • Analytical services: We provide personalized training in data collection and analysis for new and existing users. This may include familiarization with best practices in data acquisition, importing, and cleaning, as well as basic data analysis.
  • Equipment access: We provide access to our physical research space. Depending on their research protocol, users may test of up to 8 participants simultaneously, in a standardized fashion. For users who wish to incorporate psychophysiological measurements in their research, we provide access to our equipment in the lab (or even outside the lab through a mobile data collection kit). For researchers who collect physiological data, we provide access at cost to consumable supplies (such as electrodes and gels). To facilitate data collection and analysis, we also provide access to specialized software using dongles, both inside and outside the lab (MindWare Analysis Suite, E-Prime).
  • Expertise/Technical support: We provide ongoing technical support for using the equipment (audio/visual communication inside the lab, computers, and psychophysiological acquisition). To help launch studies, we also provide support to interested researchers who are applying for ethical clearance for their projects. We also provide technical support and training for researchers who use our research services (participant pools, online research platforms). In addition, we provide direct support to participants enrolled in our research pools.
  • General support: We carry out various administrative duties to support ongoing research in the lab (e.g. organizing schedules for the shared research space, organizing access to the space through access cards). We maintain computers systems and other hardware on an ongoing basis.
Sectors of application
  • Arts and cultural industries
  • Defence and security industries
  • Education
  • Healthcare and social services
  • Information and communication technologies and media
  • Management and business related services
  • Policy and governance
Equipment Function
SR Research EyeLink 1000 Eye trackers (e.g. cognition, face recognition, memory)
MindWare psychophysiological recording chassis and equipment Measure galvanic skin response (electrodermal activity), heart rate variability, electromyography, etc.
CNAP blood pressure monitors Continuous noninvasive arterial pressure (CNAP). Measure continuous blood pressure (and heart rate).
Premier Network Solutions A/V network and equipment Specialized audio/video installation and networking which allows remote observation and control of all workstations
SMART Board For training and presentations in our focus group/interview room
MindWare Analysis Suite Software tools for signal analysis. Heart rate variability, electrodermal activity, electromyography.
E-Prime Software tool for data collection
MATLAB Software tool for data collection
Focus group room Physical setup facilitating small group meetings (ideal for 6 participants)


Title URL
Virtual tour of the facilities