Conscious perception as a dynamical and plastic process
Our institute´s Research Report, recently published in the Max Planck Annual Report 2010, focuses on results concerning conscious perception vs. unconscious processing of stimuli.
Which factors determine whether a stimulus is consciously perceived or unconsciously processed? The group of Dr. Lucia Melloni (Department of Neurophysiology) has investigated how previous knowledge affects perception and its underlying neuronal processes. Furthermore, it was investigated whether conscious perception can be learned. The results show that conscious perception is not solely due to the amount of information that a stimulus carries. Rather, conscious perception is the result of a plastic, integrative process during which current information interacts with previously acquired knowledge.