E-Prime checklist

Last modified by Iris Spruit on 2021/08/05 10:47



Using this checklist can be helpful when building and running an E-Prime experiment.


Before you start building an experiment

  • Backup. In E-Studio go to Tools ⇒ Options, and make sure that Automatically backup most recently saved copies of my experiment.. is checked.
  • Default settings. Check the default settings of the E-Objects (see: Default E-Object settings).
  • Flowchart. Create a flowchart or a structural overview of the task, and a flow of one trial (see E-Primer for examples).

When building an experiment

  • Display resolution. Make sure that Match desktop resolution at runtime is set to No. Also, make sure that the resolution set under Width and Height is a resolution that the monitor can handle or, even more preferably, that the resolution is the same as that of the monitor. These settings can be found when going to Edit ⇒ Experiment ⇒ Devices ⇒ Display.
  • Refresh rate. Make sure to set a specific refresh rate under Refresh Rate Requested instead of leaving it to (unspecified). The refresh rate should be set to a refresh rate that the monitor can handle (usually 60 Hz). This setting can be found when going to Edit ⇒ Experiment ⇒ Devices Display. Also, after testing the task on the computer and monitor in the lab, double check whether the specified refresh rate is actually reached in the Edat file (the Display.RefreshRate column).
  • Unreferenced E-Objects. Make sure to delete all unused Unreferenced E-Objects (preferably the Unreferenced E-Objects is completely empty). When the Unreferenced E-Objects contain for example an ImageDisplay with a non-existing filename, the task will crash during runtime.
  • Counterbalancing. When using counterbalancing, create only one counterbalance list and check whether everything is counterbalanced correctly.
  • Recycle E-Objects. Make sure that you recycle E-Objects. Thus, where possible, have the same objects in different trial procedures. This will make data analysis easier and prevents unnecessary copy-pasting.
  • List of objects. Get a list of all objects in your experiment by going to the Browser tab in the Experiment Explorer and sort by Type. This way you can easily check whether a certain setting has been applied to a certain type of object.
  • Selection method lists. Check all lists on selection method (dropdown menu under Order in the Selection tab).
  • PreRelease and Generate PreRun. Check the PreRelease and Generate PreRun settings of all objects (PreRelease can be found in the Duration/Input tab, Generate PreRun can be found in the Common tab).
  • Logging. Check the logging settings of all objects.
  • Advisor window. Check the Advisor window. In E-Prime 3 it is located in the lower right corner of E-Studio (if it is not visible, go to View and enable Advisor). For more information, see: E-STUDIO: Experiment Advisor [22679].
  • Timing. Check the timing of your experiment (see: Timing in E-Prime).
  • Practice trials. Check the practice trials. Even though you might think that you changed everything in the test trials, often different and/or additional objects are used in the practice trials (like Feedback).
  • Instructions. Make the instructions clear and check whether the layout is ok (no letters falling of the screen).
  • Debug statements. Switch off Debug.Print statements with Debug.Enabled = False.
  • Save task info. Create an overview of the important specifications of your task, such as the E-Prime version, screen resolution, stimulus size, duration stimuli, etc.
  • Test the whole task at least once yourself and do a sanity check; check whether you have the right amount of trials in each condition and the data makes sense. Also, when sending markers, check in your physiological data file if all markers are present!

When running an experiment

  • Run local. Make sure you run the task locally (i.e. from the C: drive, not the J: or P: drive).
  • Close other programs. Make sure all other programs are switched off.
  • Laptop. Always plug in the adapter when using a laptop.
  • Use E-Run. Run your task with E-Run or by double clicking the .ebs3 file. Do not run the task from E-Studio (.es3 file), only run from E-Studio during development.


XWiki 14.10.13