Is human information processing conscious?

Behavioral and Brain Sciences 14 (4):651-69 (1991)
Investigations of the function of consciousness in human information processing have focused mainly on two questions: (1) where does consciousness enter into the information processing sequence and (2) how does conscious processing differ from preconscious and unconscious processing. Input analysis is thought to be initially "preconscious," "pre-attentive," fast, involuntary, and automatic. This is followed by "conscious," "focal-attentive" analysis which is relatively slow, voluntary, and flexible. It is thought that simple, familiar stimuli can be identified preconsciously, but conscious processing is needed to identify complex, novel stimuli. Conscious processing has also been thought to be necessary for choice, learning and memory, and the organization of complex, novel responses, particularly those requiring planning, reflection, or creativity.
Keywords attention   brain   complementarity   consciousness   functionalism   information processing   mind   reductionism   unconscious
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DOI 10.1017/S0140525X00071776
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Thomas Nagel (1974). What is It Like to Be a Bat? Philosophical Review 83 (October):435-50.

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A. Goldman (1993). The Psychology of Folk Psychology. Behavioral and Brain Sciences 16 (1):15-28.

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