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Unsupervised Learning for Mental Stress Detection - Exploration of Self-Organizing Maps

Book Contribution - Book Chapter Conference Contribution

Copyright © 2018 by SCITEPRESS – Science and Technology Publications, Lda. All rights reserved One of the major challenges in the field of ambulant stress detection lies in the model validation. Commonly, different types of questionnaires are used to record perceived stress levels. These only capture stress levels at discrete moments in time and are prone to subjective inaccuracies. Although, many studies have already reported such issues, a solution for these difficulties is still lacking. This paper explores the potential of unsupervised learning with Self-Organizing Maps (SOM) for stress detection. In unsupervised learning settings, the labels from perceived stress levels are not needed anymore. First, a controlled stress experiment was conducted during which relax and stress phases were alternated. The skin conductance (SC) and electrocardiogram (ECG) of test subjects were recorded. Then, the structure of the SOM was built based on a training set of SC and ECG features. A Gaussian Mixture Model was used to cluster regions of the SOM with similar characteristics. Finally, by comparison of features values within each cluster, two clusters could be associated to either relax phases or stress phases. A classification performance of 79.0% (±5.16) was reached with a sensitivity of 75.6% (±11.2). In the future, the goal is to transfer these first initial results from a controlled laboratory setting to an ambulant environment.
Book: Proc. of Biosignals 2018
Pages: 26 - 35
Publication year:2018