What exactly does "skin conductance" measure??

mdonkers at kub.nl mdonkers at kub.nl
Fri May 16 07:26:41 EST 1997

>Nate wrote:
>> I've been doing a good deal of reading/research about stress responses
>> lately and aside from measures of HR, BP, Cortisol, etc, skin conductance
>> also often comes up.
>> First of all, is this the same as galvanic skin response?  If not then what
>> is GSR?

>Yes, I believe it is the same

Another (more recently used) name for the same physiological process is 
Electrodermal Activity (EDA).


>> And secondly, what is/are the underlying mechanism(s) this is measuring?
>> (eg, sympathetic, parasympathetic, etc?)

>Sympathetic arousal. When we are anxious, fearful, our hands sweat.
>Sweat contains salt which increases conductance and can be measured

>Larry Brash              

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