Dr. Sven Hoffmann

Sven Hoffmann Foto: FernUniversität

E-Mail: sven.hoffmann

Telefon: +49 2331 987-4565

Raum: B1016

Research areas

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I am interested in the question: What is action? Here, I investigate via behavioral and psychophysiological measures (like EEG, ECG) what processes are involved in initiating, guiding, and evaluating the outcomes of action. Particularly errors and their cognitive processing play a crucial role in this regard. So more specific questions are: Why do people commit errors? How do we learn from errors and adapt our actions to cope with them? From a theoretical point of view, I aim to integrate perspectives from psychology, neuroscience, and movement/performance science, to stimulate and advance a “psychophysiology of action”. Also, I am interested in neuroscientific and statistical methods, in particular multivariate statistics in psychophysiology (e.g. independent component analysis or machine learning).

Academic and Research Positions

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2020 - now Lecturer and researcher, Institute of Psychology, Departments Research Methods and Evaluation (Head: Prof. Dr. Oliver Christ) and General Psychology: Judgement, Decision Making, Action (Head: Prof. Dr. Roman Liepelt)

2014 - 2020 Senior researcher & lecturer (Oberstudienrat im Hochschuldienst), German Sport University Cologne, Institute of Psychology – Dept. Performance Psychology (Head: Prof. Dr. Dr. Markus Raab)

2010 - 2014 PostDoc: Leibniz-Research Centre for Working Environment and Human Factors, Project group “Perceptual Cybernetics“ (Head: Prof. Dr. E. Wascher)

2008 - 2009 Research associate, Methods and Psychological Diagnostics (Head: Prof. Dr. R. Schulze), University of Wuppertal

2009 PhD (Dr. rer. nat.), University of Bochum, Title: „Independent component analysis of ocular artifacts.“

2007 - 2009 PhD student at the IfADo research group "Ageing and CNS alterations" (Head: Prof. Dr. med. M. Falkenstein). DFG-project (DFG FA 211/23-1): "The relation between error related potentials and response monitoring and their dependency on aging".

2007 - 2008 Project researcher (IfADo), "Neurophysiological and educational aspects of second language acquisition", part of the program: "NIL: Neuroscience, Instruction, Learning", founded by the Federal Ministry of Education and Research within the framework program "Das Denken verstehen"

2006 - 2007 Junior researcher, IfADo research group "Modern Human-Machine-Systems". (Head: PD Dr. G. Rinkenauer)


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  1. Wilken, S., Böttcher, A., Adelhöfer, N., Raab, M., Beste, C., & Hoffmann, S. (2024). Neural oscillations guiding action during effects imagery. Behavioural Brain Research, 115063. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.bbr.2024.115063
  2. Böttcher, A., Wilken, S., Adelhöfer, N., Raab, M., Hoffmann, S., & Beste, C. (2023). A dissociable functional relevance of theta- and beta-band activities during complex sensorimotor integration. Cerebral Cortex, bhad191. https://doi.org/10.1093/cercor/bhad191
  3. Wilken, S., Böttcher, A., Adelhöfer, N., Raab, M., Hoffmann, S., & Beste, C. (2023). The neurophysiology of continuous action monitoring. iScience, 106939. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.isci.2023.106939
  4. Hoffmann, S., Fischer, R., & Liepelt, R. (2023). Valence moderates the effect of stimulus-hand proximity on conflict processing and gaze-cueing. PeerJ, 11, e15286. https://doi.org/10.7717/peerj.15286
  5. Kim, H., Luo, J., Chu, S., Cannard, C., Hoffmann, S., & Miyakoshi, M. (2023). ICA’s bug: How ghost ICs emerge from effective rank deficiency caused by EEG electrode interpolation and incorrect re-referencing. Frontiers in Signal Processing, 3. https://www.frontiersin.org/articles/10.3389/frsip.2023.1064138
  6. Yu, S., Mückschel, M., Hoffmann, S., Bluschke, A., Pscherer, C., & Beste, C. (2023). The neural stability of perception–motor representations affects action outcomes and behavioral adaptation. Psychophysiology, 60(1), e14146. https://doi.org/10.1111/psyp.14146
  7. Böttcher A., Adelhöfer N., Wilken S., Raab M., Hoffmann S., Beste C. (2023) TRACK - a new algorithm and open-source tool for the analysis of pursuit-tracking sensorimotor integration processes. Behavior Research Methods. https://doi.org/10.3758/s13428-023-02065-w
  8. Schmaußer, M., Hoffmann, S., Raab, M., & Laborde, S. (2022). The effects of noninvasive brain stimulation on heart rate and heart rate variability: A systematic review and meta-analysis. Journal of neuroscience research, 100(9), 1664–1694. https://doi.org/10.1002/jnr.25062
  9. Hosang, T. J., Laborde, S., Sprengel, M., Löw, A., Baum, N., Hoffmann, S., & Jacobsen, T. (2021). Tasting Rewards. Effects of Orosensory Sweet Signals on Human Error Processing. Nutritional Neuroscience. doi:10.1080/1028415X.2021.1993538
  10. Hoffmann, S., Jendreizik, L., Ettinger, U., Laborde, S. (2019). Keeping the pace: the effect of slow paced breathing on error monitoring. International Journal of Psychophysiology. 146, 217-224.
  11. Hoffmann, S., Beste, C., & Raab, M. (2019). Editorial: The Psychophysiology of Action. Frontiers in Psychology, 10, 1266. doi:10.3389/fpsyg.2019.01266
  12. Hoffmann, S., Löffler, J., Musculus, L., Bröker, L., Lobinger, B., Liepelt, R., Laborde, S. Raab, M. (2018). The psychophysiology of action: A multidisciplinary endeavor for integrating action and cognition. Frontiers in Psychology. doi:10.3389/fpsyg.2018.01423
  13. Raab, M., Hoffmann, S., Laborde, S., Lobinger, B. (2017). Von Vertrauenskrisen und Handlungsnormen zu Selbstreflexion und persönlichem Handeln. Zeitschrift für Sportpsychologie. 24. 111-119.
  14. Stock, A.-K., Hoffmann, S., & Beste, C. (2016). Effects of binge drinking and hangover on response selection subprocesses—a study using EEG and drift diffusion modeling. Addiction Biology, n/a-n/a.
  15. Plewan, T., Wascher, E., Falkenstein, M., & Hoffmann, S. (2016). Classifying Response Correctness across Different Task Sets: A Machine Learning Approach. PLOS ONE, 11(3), e0152864
  16. Raab, M., Lobinger, B., Hoffmann, S., Pizzera, A., & Laborde, S. (2015). Performance Psychology. Elsevier Academic Press.
  17. Hoffmann, S. (2015). Bridging the Gap between Perception and Cognition: An Overview. In Performance Psychology (pp. 136–151). Elsevier Academic Press.
  18. Hoffmann, S. (2015). Performance Monitoring: Causes and Consequences. In Performance Psychology (pp. 152–168). Elsevier Academic Press.
  19. Hoffmann, S., & Beste, C. (2015). A perspective on neural and cognitive mechanisms of error commission. Frontiers in Behavioral Neuroscience, 9, 50.
  20. Wascher, E., Schneider, D., & Hoffmann, S. (2015). Does response selection contribute to inhibition of return? Psychophysiology, 52(7), 942–950.
  21. Schneider, D., Hoffmann, S., & Wascher, E. (2014). Sustained posterior contralateral activity indicates re-entrant target processing in visual change detection: an EEG study. Frontiers in Human Neuroscience, 8.
  22. Wascher, E., Rasch, B., Sänger, J., Hoffmann, S., Schneider, D., Rinkenauer, G., Gutberlet, I. (2014). Frontal theta activity reflects distinct aspects of mental fatigue. Biological Psychology, 96, 57–65.
  23. Hoffmann, S. (2014). Brief Report: Some Remarks About the Response Relatedness of the Error Negativity. Journal of Psychophysiology, 28(1), 22–31.
  24. Hoffmann, S., Labrenz, F., Themann, M., Wascher, E., & Beste, C. (2014). Crosslinking EEG time–frequency decomposition and fMRI in error monitoring. Brain Structure and Function, 219(2), 595–605.
  25. Wascher, E., Heppner, H., & Hoffmann, S. (2014). Towards the measurement of eventrelated EEG activity in real-life working environments. International Journal of Psychophysiology, 91(1), 3–9.
  26. Plewan, T., Wascher, E., Hoffmann, S.: Elektroenzephalografie und Mustererkennung als benutzerunabhängiges Werkzeug für die Marktforschung. In: Gestaltung der Arbeitswelt der Zukunft: 60. Kongress der Gesellschaft für Arbeitswissenschaft, TU und Hochschule München, 12.-14.03.2014 (S. 381-383) / GfA, Gesellschaft für Arbeitswissenschaft e.V. [Schriftltg.: Matthias Jäger]. Dortmund: GfA-Press, 2014.
  27. Hoffmann, S. & Falkenstein, M. (2012). Predictive information processing in the brain: Errors and response monitoring.International Journal of Psychophysiology, 83 (2), 208–212.
  28. Hoffmann, S. & Falkenstein, M. (2012). Personality and error monitoring:an update. Frontiers in Human Neuroscience, 6. http://dx.doi.org/10.3389/ fnhum.2012.00171
  29. Hoffmann, S. & Wascher, E. (2012). Spatial cueing modulates the monitoring of correct responses. Neuroscience Letters, 506 (2), 225–228.
  30. Wascher, E., Schneider, D., Hoffmann, S., Beste, C. & Sänger, J. (2012). When compensation fails: Perceptual deficits in healthy ageing caused by visual distraction. Neuropsychologia, 50, 3185-3192.
  31. Hoffmann, S. & Falkenstein, M. (2011). Aging and error processing: age related increase in the variability of the error-negativity is not accompanied by increase in response variability. PLoS One, 6 (2), e17482. http://dx.doi.org/10.1371/ journal.pone.0017482
  32. Falkenstein, M., Wild-Wall, N. & Hoffmann, S. (2011). Lehr-Lernforschung unter neurowissenschaftlicher Perspektive. In A. Heine & A. Jacobs (Hrsg.), (Kap. Neurophysiologische Aspekte des Zweitspracherwerbs: Der Effekt von korrektivem Feedback auf die Fehlerverarbeitung und das Lernen). Münster: Waxmann-Verlag.
  33. Hoffmann, S. & Falkenstein, M. (2010). Independent component analysis of erroneous and correct responses suggests online response control. Human Brain Mapping, 31 (9), 1305–1315.
  34. Beste, C., Otto, T. & Hoffmann, S. (2010). The biopsychology-nonlinear analysis toolbox: a free, open-source Matlab-toolbox for the non-linear analysis of time series data. Neuroinformatics, 8, 197-200.
  35. Wascher, E. & Hoffmann, S. (2010). Okonomie experimentalpsychologischer Messung im Anwendungskontext. In M. Schütte (Hrsg.), Neue Arbeits- und Lebenswelten gestalten: 56. Kongress der Gesellschaft für Arbeitswissenschaft (S. 579–582). Institut für Arbeitswissenschaft der Techn. Univ. Darmstadt: GfA-Press.
  36. Gajewski, P. D., Wild-Wall, N., Hoffmann, S. & Falkenstein, M. (2009). Ereigniskorrelierte Potenziale: Ansatz, Parametrisierung und Analyseverfahren. Neuroforum, 15, 124–129..
  37. Hoffmann, S. (2009). Independent component analysis of ocular artifacts. Bochum University. Dissertation.
  38. Wascher, E., Hoffmann, S., Sänger, J. & Grosjean, M. (2009). Visuo-spatial processing and the N1 component of the ERP. Psychophysiology, 46 (6), 1270–1277.
  39. Hoffmann, S. & Falkenstein, M. (2008). The correction of eye blink artefacts in the EEG: a comparison of two prominent methods. PLoS One, 3 (8), e3004. http://dx.doi.org/10.1371/journal.pone.0003004


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Research grant DFG „The limits of action emulation“ together with Prof. Dr. Dr. Markus Raab (German Sport University Cologne) and Prof. Dr. Christian Beste (TU Dresden)

German Sport University Cologne internal grant Die Rolle der motorischen Kontrolle bei Paradoxer Leistung“ together with Dr. Babett Lobinger (German Sport University Cologne)


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  • DGPA and Brain Products Young Scientist Award for a Distinguished Contribution to EEG Research, 2014.
  • DAAD travel grant (SPR meeting 2018, Québec City, Canada)
  • Excellent teaching certificate 2018 for the lecture Lernmotivation und Leistungsdiagnostik“ (in German) at the German Sport University Cologne

Congress organizations

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  • Scientific committee Aging & Cognition“ conference at the IfADo in Dortmund, 2013
  • Head of management of the conference Psychophysiology of action“ of the asp at the German Sport University in Cologne 2018.