Processing Information with and without Awareness
The concept of information processing with and without consciousness is my primary research interest. A significant element of mind-wandering manages the unconscious perception of information. Smallwood et al. (2007) examined the information-processing correlates of mind wandering with and without awareness during a task that required participants to encode words and recognize targets with varying probabilities. Response inhibition was used to evaluate the identification of a target. Mind wandering in the absence of awareness was linked to a failure to oversee task performance, as evidenced by short RTs, and was predictive of response inhibition failures. Under conditions of low target probability, mind wandering was associated with a relative absence of recollection’s influence on retrieval. Consistent with the assumption that mind wandering entails a state of dissociated attention, the findings highlight the significance of meta-awareness in deciding the implications of various mental states. (Smallwood et al., 2007)
According to Smallwood and Schooler (2015), conscious experience is fluidly flowing; it rarely focuses on a single issue for a lengthy period. The experience of mind wandering, in which attention shifts from a present task to unrelated ideas and feelings, exemplifies its dynamic character. Mind-wandering phenomenology research emphasizes the significance of its content and relationship to meta cognition in determining its functional effects. Examining the information-processing requirements of the mind-wandering state reveals that it includes perceptual decoupling to escape the restrictions of the present, that its content derives from episodic and affective processes, and that its regulation is dependent on executive control. Mind wandering also entails a complicated balance of costs and benefits: Its correlation with several types of error emphasizes its cost, while its association with creativity and future planning indicates its potential worth. Although mind wandering is vital to the flow of consciousness, many techniques can mitigate its negative elements while preserving its positive ones.
Several studies have found that processing information depends on an individual’s cognitive style rather than their cognitive capacity or education. In terms of paranormal beliefs, extrasensory perception (ESP) can be conceptualized and quantified as a unified and separate set of information processing. More than (a lack of) logic, these convictions appear intricately linked to an intuitive cognitive style (Brankovic, 2019). Since these ideas can be reconciled with a rational worldview using the dual-process models of information processing, educated people are more vulnerable to them and may even be predisposed to them (Pennycook et al., 2012). Research by Brankovic (2019) focused on both intuitive and rational thinking types. Based on the dual system models of information processing developed by Kahneman, the information processing modes of Pacini and Epstein (Epstein et al., 1996; Pacini & Epstein, 1999) can be divided into logical and experiential (intuitive, associative, emotional). The model’s central premise is that the two systems can operate separately, allowing individuals to hold views that are at odds with one another.