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Head Movement Action Units
The FACS as we know it today was first published in , but was substantially updated in Using FACS, we are able to determine the displayed emotion of a participant. This analysis of facial expressions is one of very few techniques available for assessing emotions in real-time fEMG is another option. Other measures, such as interviews and psychometric tests, must be completed after a stimulus has been presented. Researchers have for a long time been limited to manually coding video recordings of participants according to the action units described by the FACS. This process is now possible to complete with automatic facial expression analysis, using tools such as Affectiva. Below we have listed the major action units that are used to determine emotions. Roll your mouse over the image to start the movement! Below the action units we have also listed the combinations of action units that are determined as a specific emotion. The Action Units described above show the different movements of facial muscles.
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The Facial Action Coding System FACS is a widely used protocol for recognizing and labeling facial expression by describing the movement of muscles of the face. FACS is used to objectively measure the frequency and intensity of facial expressions without assigning any emotional meaning to those muscle movements. Instead, FACS breaks down facial expressions into their smallest discernable movements called action units. Each action unit creates a distinct change in facial appearance, such as an eyebrow lift or nose wrinkle.
Facial expression is widely used to evaluate emotional impairment in neuropsychiatric disorders. Unlike facial expression ratings based on categorization of expressions into prototypical emotions happiness, sadness, anger, fear, disgust, etc. However, FACS rating requires extensive training, and is time consuming and subjective thus prone to bias.