StressClick: Sensing stress from gaze-click patterns

Michael Xuelin Huang, Jiajia Li, Grace Ngai, Hong Va Leong

Research output: Chapter in book / Conference proceedingConference article published in proceeding or bookAcademic researchpeer-review

27 Citations (Scopus)


Stress sensing is valuable in many applications, including online learning crowdsourcing and other daily human-computer interactions. Traditional affective computing techniques investigate affect inference based on different individual modalities, such as facial expression, vocal tones, and physiological signals or the aggregation of signals of these independent modalities, without explicitly exploiting their inter-connections. In contrast, this paper focuses on exploring the impact of mental stress on the coordination between two human nervous systems, the somatic and autonomic nervous systems. Specifically, we present the analysis of the subtle but indicative pattern of human gaze behaviors surrounding a mouse-click event, i.e. the gaze-click pattern. Our evaluation shows that mental stress affects the gaze-click pattern, and this influence has largely been ignored in previous work. This paper, therefore, further proposes a non-intrusive approach to inferring human stress level based on the gaze-click pattern, using only data collected from the common computer webcam and mouse. We conducted a human study on solving math questions under different stress levels to explore the validity of stress recognition based on this coordination pattern. Experimental results show the effectiveness of our technique and the generalizability of the proposed features for user-independent modeling. Our results suggest that it may be possible to detect stress non-intrusively in the wild, without the need for specialized equipment.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationMM 2016 - Proceedings of the 2016 ACM Multimedia Conference
PublisherAssociation for Computing Machinery, Inc
Number of pages10
ISBN (Electronic)9781450336031
Publication statusPublished - 1 Oct 2016
Event24th ACM Multimedia Conference, MM 2016 - Amsterdam, United Kingdom
Duration: 15 Oct 201619 Oct 2016


Conference24th ACM Multimedia Conference, MM 2016
Country/TerritoryUnited Kingdom


  • Cross-modal feature
  • Gaze-click pattern
  • Stress detection

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Computer Graphics and Computer-Aided Design
  • Human-Computer Interaction
  • Computer Vision and Pattern Recognition
  • Software


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