Heart-Brain Coherence; Heart-Rate Variability (HRV); Reading Anxiety; TestEdge Program

Document Type: Research Article


Department of Foreign Languages and Literature, Science and Research Branch, Islamic Azad University, Tehran, Iran


Based on psychophysiological research, coherent heart-brain interaction can change afferent cardiac signal pattern sent to the brain. Accordingly, the present study aimed at facilitating the emotion-cognition interaction through HeartMath Institute self-regulated emotional techniques to investigate the efficacy of heart-brain coherence on reading anxiety reduction that significantly enhances attention, memory, comprehension, and efficiency in learning. Participants were 63 Iranian university and high school students. In order to enable the participants to self-generate high psychophysiological state and optimal heart rate variability (HRV), TestEdge program, a biofeedback remedy that teaches students skills to self-regulate negative emotional learning impediments, was administered. Findings indicated that the combination of intentional heart focus with the generation of sustained positive feelings increased heart-brain coherence and resulted in a beneficial mode of psychophysiological state. This heart-brain coherence affected and controlled the HRV patterns significantly among the participants on average which, in turn, reduced reading anxiety. Particularly, this study found significant differences among the EFL students with high, mid, and low levels of coherence and their reading anxiety level.


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