Vakgroep Psychologie, Gezondheid & Technologie


Title of internship assignment

Relaxation training with neurofeedback to improve sleep


Philips Research: Brain, Behaviour & Cognition


Eindhoven, High Tech Campus 34.

Desired period of internship

April 2017 – July 2017. Please note: This  internship can only be combined with a subsequent master thesis assignment

The assignment

Literature shows that relaxation helps to sleep better, but making an interesting relaxation application is a real challenge. At Philips Research we invented an audio neurofeedback system to relax persons in a very natural and pleasant way. The user has to listen to his favourite music 30 minutes before going to sleep via an audio headset. In the headset a few EEG electrodes are integrated to capture brain signals. The more relaxation is observed in the brain signals the better the music will sound.


The assignment for the internship is to make an overview of current relaxation techniques to improve sleep.

The internship should deliver a report with the following topics:

-          Brief description about the assignment and sleep parameters

-          Overview of current relaxation techniques

-          Literature search on the background of the relaxation techniques

-          Advice on which systems to buy/try-out to check their practical usefulness.

We are looking for an outgoing student, who masters the Dutch language very well, who can assiss volunteers (remotely) with their relaxation training and has an interest in the topic sleep.


In the subsequent masterthesis assignment the audio neurofeedback system invented by Philips Research will be evaluated.

The student has to execute a trial with 30 volunteers to evaluate the effectiveness of this audio neurofeedback training to improve sleep.  Relaxation and alpha power in the EEG signal are positively correlated. Cognitive load and beta power are positively correlated. Both observations give hints for a neurofeedback system to control the music quality.

The experiment will compare between subjects 3 different feedback mechanisms (alpha up, beta down and placebo). All volunteers will use the system at home for 4 weeks and will be monitored remotely.  A sleep hypnogram of each night is estimated objectively via the Philips Health Watch and subjectively via a sleep questionnaire each morning.

Main research question for the student: what is the effect of the 3 different feedback system on quality of sleep.



Contact person information:

Name: Ad Denissen


Telephone: +31622677777