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Transcranial direct current stimulation (tDCS): A beginner’s guide for design and implementation

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journal contribution
posted on 24.01.2018 by Hayley Thair, Amy L. Holloway, Roger Newport, Alastair D. Smith
Transcranial direct current stimulation (tDCS) is a popular brain stimulation method that is used to modulate cortical excitability, producing facilitatory or inhibitory effects upon a variety of behaviors. There is, however, a current lack of consensus between studies, with many results suggesting that polarity-specific effects are difficult to obtain. This article explores some of these differences and highlights the experimental parameters that may underlie their occurrence. We provide a general, practical snapshot of tDCS methodology, including what it is used for, how to use it, and considerations for designing an effective and safe experiment. Our aim is to equip researchers who are new to tDCS with the essential knowledge so that they can make informed and well-rounded decisions when designing and running successful experiments. By summarizing the varied approaches, stimulation parameters, and outcomes, this article should help inform future tDCS research in a variety of fields.

Funding

HT and AH were supported by a studentship from the Defence Science Technology Laboratory (DSTL), awarded to RN and AS respectively (DSTLX-1000083178).

History

School

  • Sport, Exercise and Health Sciences

Published in

Frontiers in Neuroscience

Citation

THAIR, H. ... et al, 2017. Transcranial direct current stimulation (tDCS): A beginner’s guide for design and implementation. Frontiers in Neuroscience, 11, Article 641.

Publisher

Frontiers Media © Thair, Holloway, Newport and Smith

Version

VoR (Version of Record)

Publisher statement

This work is made available according to the conditions of the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International (CC BY 4.0) licence. Full details of this licence are available at: http://creativecommons.org/licenses/ by/4.0/

Acceptance date

22/11/2017

Publication date

2017

Notes

This is an Open Access Article. It is published by Frontiers Media under the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International Licence (CC BY). Full details of this licence are available at: http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/

ISSN

1662-4548

Language

en

Licence

Exports