Pupil Size in Relation to Mental Activity during Simple Problem-Solving

@article{Hess1964PupilSI,
  title={Pupil Size in Relation to Mental Activity during Simple Problem-Solving},
  author={Eckhard H. Hess and James M. Polt},
  journal={Science},
  year={1964},
  volume={143},
  pages={1190 - 1192}
}
Changes in pupil size during the solving of simple multiplication problems can be used as a direct measure of mental activity. The pupil response not only indicates mental activity in itself but shows that mental activity is closely correlated with problem difficulty, and that the size of the pupil increases with the difficulty of the problem. These findings relate to recent Russian research on the pupillary reflex in connection with orienting and brain stimulation. 
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  • Physics
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  • 1968
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TLDR
The present study focuses on replicating the studies by Ahern (1978) and Klingner (2010), which found that for three levels of difficulty of mental multiplications, the more difficult multiplications yielded larger dilations of the pupil.
The Pupil as Marker of Cognitive Processes
Of all peripheral measures of (neuro-)physiological activity, pupil size is probably the easiest to access. Far beyond its well-known reaction to light incident on the eye, pupil size is a rich
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