Macquarie University
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Towards the development of an integrative measure of Autonomous Cephalocaudal Paresthesia

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posted on 2022-03-28, 15:13 authored by Natalie M. Roberts
While significant progress has been made, altered states of consciousness (ASCs) still represent a major frontier in psychological research. The present project aimed to develop a reliable and valid measure of a proposed alteration of consciousness, Autonomous Cephalocaudal Paresthesia (ACP), also known as Autonomous Sensory Meridian Response (ASMR). The phenomenon has been described as an intensely pleasurable and euphoric tingling sensation that begins at the back of the head and travels down the central nervous system in response to specific, individualised audiovisual triggers and real world stimuli. A mixed-methods approach was adopted, utilising a sample of existing online data (N = 303) for qualitative analysis and then deriving a scale (ACPS-31) through content analysis. The secondary, quantitative study refined the ACPS-31 through factor analysis (N = 451), producing a cohesive scale with five subscales: Movement, Sensation, Affect, Relaxation and Cognition. The final total score 21-item ACP scale (ACPS-21) evidenced good reliability with adequate internal consistency (Cronbach’s α = .82) and demonstrated a divergent pattern of correlations to frisson, flow, absorption or alexithymia. Future work could focus on further refinement of the ACPS-21, as well experimentally assessing the relationship between ACP, arousal and personality factors.


Table of Contents

Chapter 1. Introduction -- Chapter 2. Study 1. Development of a measure of ACP method -- Chapter 3. Study 2. Quantitative and scale refinement : method -- Chapter 4. Study 2. Quantitative and scale refinement : results -- Chapter 5. Discussion -- Conclusions.


Theoretical thesis. Bibliography: pages 97-104

Awarding Institution

Macquarie University

Degree Type

Thesis MRes


MRes, Macquarie University, Faculty of Human Sciences, Department of Psychology

Department, Centre or School

Department of Psychology

Year of Award


Principal Supervisor

Simon Boag


Copyright Natalie M. Roberts 2015. Copyright disclaimer:




1 online resource (104 pages)

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