Judith Becker, Ph.D.

Thomas Budzynski, Ph.D.

Jon Frederick, Ph.D.

Robert Gatchel, Ph.D.

Emil Jovanov, Ph.D.

Clete A. Kushida, M.D., Ph.D.

Edward W. Large, Ph.D.

Scott Makeig, Ph.D.

Melinda Maxfield, Ph.D.

Harold Russell, Ph.D.

David Spiegel, M.D.

M. Barry Sterman, Ph.D.

Patrick Suppes, Ph.D.

Concetta Tomaino, D.A.MT-BC

Udo Will, Ph.D.




































Working Roundtable Questions


If you have any comments on these questions or would like to suggest any additions please e-mail Gabe Turow at gabet@ccrma.stanford.edu   



These questions will help make explicit the concept (or concepts) of entrainment for the discussions:

What does it mean to talk about "entrainment of brain activity"?

What do we mean when we talk about entrainment of EEG?

Is there a difference between brain-internal and external (through stimuli from the outside) entrainment?


To what degree does a subject have to attend to a stimulus to become entrained? 

How passive or active does this attention have to be to see an EEG response?

How important is novelty in the simulation?

  -Varying timbre, tempo, syncopation could increase EEG response

  -Dressing the performers in interesting costumes could keep subjectís attention on the music

  -Could turn stimulation into a game to see driving response

How important are habituation and repetition to creating a driving response? 

When habituation occurs, do you cease to see a stimulus response in the EEG?

Whatís the balance between habituation and novelty?

Have current studies taken this into account?

What accounts for the difference in results between photic driving and auditory driving in the lab?  Is it the novelty of the stimuli involved?  Who is familiar with getting a flashing light strobed their eyes at close range?  Does this compare to simple sound pulses in terms of novelty?  Are we even comparing similar things if the stimuli are so different in their degree of novelty to the subject?

How loud does the stimulation have to be to see a driving response?

What is the difference between auditory driving via monaural, stereo, or binaural beat stimuli?  How do these driving stimuli compare to photic stimuli?

How bright does stimulus need to be to see an entrainment effect in an EEG?

What are the differences in effects between bright and dim lights?


Can you entrain to an imagined stimulus?

Imagining flashing lights-- could you entrain to them?

Can you entrain to singing to yourself out loud?

Can you entrain to a song that you sing in your head?

Examples could be:

  -mantra recitation without making any vocal sound

  -counting in your head

-when you play music

            -counting in your head during meditation

            -counting sheep


How can these stimuli become effective and culturally specific? 

Should there be professional performers in the lab?


Is EEG the best way to measure a driving response?

Given that a significant portion of the auditory cortex lies in the Sylvian Fissures, is EEG a reliable measure?  Does this necessitate MEG measurements? 

Could the significant differences in spread of the auditory and visual areas over the cortex account for the differences in the success of observing entrainment phenomena between visual and auditory stimuli via EEG?


What future research projects are necessary to clarify some of these questions and claims?

How important is mechanism in understand this entrainment phenomenon? 





What is the EEG signature of ADD, depression, anxiety, insomnia, and/or chronic pain? 

Which music is most appropriate to treat ADD, depression, anxiety, insomnia, and/or chronic pain? 

What tempos are most appropriate?

What success has there been with different techniques?

How does the neurofeedback literature inform these questions?

How does the hypnosis literature support this model of recruiting attention via stimulation?

Does this method of treating illness represent a new paradigm for music therapy in its specificity of treatments? 

What are the long-term benefits? What does the neuro-plasticity literature have to offer on this question?  What does the meditation literature offer? How do these benefits compare with other therapeutic modalities?


What are the dangers of using music, photic stimulation or AVS for these purposes?

What are the benefits of using music, photic stimulation or AVS for these purposes, over other techniques? (Intensive and prolonged tutoring, talk therapy, meditation, electrical and electromagnetic stimulation, learning complex skills such as control of brain wave activity, use of stimulant drugs such as amphetamines, vagal nerve stimulation, deep brain stimulation with implanted electrodes)

How cost-effective are they?

Why were these techniques not used widely in the past?  Are the reasons cultural, rather than scientific?


What has to be done to prove the efficacy of this set of techniques in a clinical context? 

What are the strongest arguments for gaining monetary support to explore this area? 






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