What’s the difference between the micro expressions training tools and FACS?

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The online training tools are designed to teach you the everyday skills of reading and responding to micro expressions, whereas the FACS manual is a much more technical guide often used by researchers, animators, and in other various professional settings. Therefore, for anyone interested in learning about micro expressions, we generally recommend starting with the training tools.

The online training tools are interactive modules, which help you learn to detect micro expressions and respond to emotional expressions. There are a total of seven training tools which are combined into three different packages. The format of each tool is a little different, but generally follows a series of learning, practice, and test sections to measure your accuracy and improvement over time.

The Facial Action Coding System (FACS) is a downloadable PDF manual. It is a comprehensive, anatomically based system for describing all visually discernible facial movement, which breaks down facial expressions into individual components of muscle movement. It takes at least 100 hours of self-study to learn, and it has been used extensively in a wide variety of medical, psychological research, and commercial contexts. You can learn FACS the traditional, self-guided way, or through a workshop.

Paul Ekman is a well-known psychologist and co-discoverer of micro expressions. He was named one of the 100 most influential people in the world by TIME magazine in 2009. He has worked with many government agencies, domestic and abroad. Dr. Ekman has compiled over 50 years of his research to create comprehensive training tools to read the hidden emotions of those around you.

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