Class Year


Document Type

Student Research Paper

Date of Creation

Summer 2022

Department 1



Every year technologies become more sophisticated and more accessible. Some have become a seamless extension of mind, so much so that they are better understood no longer as tools, but as integral parts of how our mind works. Biofeedback devices are examples of such technologies that are increasingly used in institutional contexts and for personal use. They offer a presumed scientific and objective basis for life decisions and behavioral health interventions, as well as a promise of new forms of self-knowledge. Yet in the very design of biofeedback technologies are cultural and institutional values that are rarely critically appraised. This paper focuses on four such processes. (1) Simplifying and interpreting bio information; (2) Advancing ideals of health determined by the few; (3) Conceiving health as the systematic pursuit of these ideals, and (4) Perceiving bio data as authoritative and trustworthy. As biofeedback technologies are integrated more fully and function as cognitive extension of mind, we should be critically aware of the paradox of seemingly objective data reflecting values inherent in the design of biofeedback technologies and the recommended health interventions that result.

Creative Commons License

Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.