Undergraduate student shares completed dissertation on ASMR, aesthetics, sensory perception, and sensory phenomena

ASMR Autonomous Sensory Meridian Response UniversityAndrew Smith is an undergraduate student at the Duncan of Jordanstone College of Art and Design at The University of Dundee, Scotland.

He focused his final year dissertation project on ASMR to fulfill the requirements for his Bachelor of Design degree (with Honors).

Andrew’s completed dissertation was 47 pages (~10,000 words), was titled, “An investigation into the interconnected nature of aesthetics, sensory perception and sensory phenomena” and weaved together the following topics:

  • ASMR
  • The Golden Rectangle (a shape linked to art, design, and architecture)
  • Eye Movement Desensitization Reprocessing (a therapy for trauma patients)
  • Brain Wave States, Hypnosis, & REM, Sleep
  • Brain Default Mode Network & Synaesthesia
  • Interpersonal bonding
  • Senses, Sensory Processing Disorder, & Autism

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Can you actually experience “touch” while watching an ASMR video?

Sue Dorrens, founder of the “I Love ASMR” facebook page asked me a question related to ASMR videos.

She wondered why our brains perceive a fake stimulus as a real stimulus.

In particular, she wondered why someone can watch a video of someone pretending to touch their head (e.g., hair salon role-play or facial massage role-play) and then have a relaxing response as if someone actually had touched their head.

This is a great question and I have three possible explanations.

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