Computational cognitive modeling of the predictive active self in situated action (COMPAS)

The COMPAS project aims to develop a computational cognitive model of the Sense of Control (SoC) in situated action. The computational model serves as a explanation of the mechanisms and processes underlying the SoC. It aims at making the following contributions:

  • gaining empirical data about the sense of control obtained in experimental studies with human participants
  • simulation of situated actions with different sense of controls and analysis of its impact on how actions are regulated with a reinforcement learning agent


Studies with human participants

Implementing and executing studies which analyse the sense of control of humans. The participants have to play a moonlander game where they steer a space ship and have to avoid obstacles. They are hindered in their actions by noise and drift. The sense of control is measured with questionnaires as well as eye-tracking, and correlated with the observed behavioral strategies to cope with uncertainty in situated actions.


Simulation with a computational model

Implementing a computational model which simulates a human sense of control in situated action. The computational model is based on theoretical processes underlying the sense of control. In our case, we implement a reinforcement learning agent which acts in the same moonlander game as the human participants of the studies. We investigate whether SoC can provide an additional reward or control mechanism shaping the learning of robust and adaptive policies.



  • TU Berlin: Prof. Nele Russwinkel, Nils Heinrich
  • U Bielefeld: Prof. Stefan Kopp, Annika Österdiekhoff

Contact: Annika Österdiekhoff

The Active Self (SPP funded by DFG)