Effects of biofeedback-assisted attention training in a college population

Biofeedback Self Regul. 1985 Dec;10(4):315-24. doi: 10.1007/BF00999261.


A program of stress management employing open-focus attention-training workshops was developed at Baruch College to bring the benefits of stress reduction to students. The purpose of the research reported here was to evaluate the results of the open-focus attention-training technique. Open-focus technique without biofeedback training was used for two semesters. Biofeedback training was incorporated in the third semester. In the first study, changes in grade point average (GPA), stress-related symptoms, and physiological measures were examined. The experimental subjects' stress data for this study was reported previously (Valdés, 1985). In the second study, changes in the same variables for experimental and control subjects were evaluated. Students in the control group showed decreased GPA, while those who participated in open-focus training showed a trend toward improved GPA. Stress-related symptoms associated with anxiety and management of emotional problems showed significant posttraining improvement, as did physiological measures in all of the biofeedback modalities in which the experimental subjects were specifically trained. The results support the hypothesis that the workshops were successful in reducing stress levels, and suggest that further controlled research be conducted to verify these findings, and to identify the most effective components of the training procedure.

MeSH terms

  • Achievement*
  • Adult
  • Anxiety / psychology
  • Attention*
  • Biofeedback, Psychology* / physiology
  • Blood Pressure
  • Electromyography
  • Female
  • Galvanic Skin Response
  • Heart Rate
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Muscle Contraction
  • Stress, Psychological / psychology
  • Stress, Psychological / therapy*