Selective Transfer Learning for EEG-Based Drowsiness Detection

Chun-Shu Wei, Yuan Pin Lin, Yu Te Wang, Tzyy Ping Jung, Nima Bigdely-Shamlo, Chin-Teng Lin

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contributionpeer-review

31 Scopus citations


On the pathway from laboratory settings to real world environment, a major challenge on the development of a robust electroencephalogram (EEG)-based brain-computer interface (BCI) is to collect a significant amount of informative training data from each individual, which is labor intensive and time-consuming and thereby significantly hinders the applications of BCIs in real-world settings. A possible remedy for this problem is to leverage existing data from other subjects. However, substantial inter-subject variability of human EEG data could deteriorate more than improve the BCI performance. This study proposes a new transfer learning (TL)-based method that exploits a subject's pilot data to select auxiliary data from other subjects to enhance the performance of an EEG-based BCI for drowsiness detection. This method is based on our previous findings that the EEG correlates of drowsiness were stable within individuals across sessions and an individual's pilot data could be used as calibration/training data to build a robust drowsiness detector. Empirical results of this study suggested that the feasibility of leveraging existing BCI models built by other subjects' data and a relatively small amount of subject-specific pilot data to develop a BCI that can outperform the BCI based solely on the pilot data of the subject.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publication2015 IEEE International Conference on Systems, Man, and Cybernetics (SMC 2015): Big Data Analytics For Human-Centric Systems
Number of pages4
ISBN (Print)9781479986965
StatePublished - 12 Jan 2016
EventIEEE International Conference on Systems, Man, and Cybernetics, SMC 2015 - Kowloon Tong, Hong Kong
Duration: 9 Oct 201512 Oct 2015

Publication series

NameIEEE International Conference on Systems Man and Cybernetics Conference Proceedings
ISSN (Print)1062-922X


ConferenceIEEE International Conference on Systems, Man, and Cybernetics, SMC 2015
CountryHong Kong
CityKowloon Tong


  • brain-computer interface
  • EEG
  • transfer learning

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