Metacognition and consciousness

In P D Zelazo, M Moscovitch & E Thompson (eds.), Cambridge Handbook of Consciousness. Cambridge University Press (2007)
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Abstract

The study of metacognition can shed light on some fundamental issues about consciousness and its role in behavior. Metacognition research concerns the processes by which people self reflect on their own cognitive and memory processes (monitoring), and how they put their metaknowledge to use in regulating their information processing and behavior (control). Experimental research on metacognition has addressed the following questions: First, what are the bases of metacognitive judgments that people make in monitoring their learning, remembering, and performance? Second, how valid are such judgments and what are the factors that affect the correspondence between subjective and objective indexes of knowing? Third, what are the processes that underlie the accuracy and inaccuracy of metacognitive judgments? Fourth, how does the output of metacognitive monitoring contribute to the strategic regulation of learning and remembering? Finally, how do the metacognitive processes of monitoring and control affect actual performance? Research addressing these questions is reviewed, emphasizing its implication for issues concerning consciousness, in particular, the genesis of subjective experience, the function of self-reflective consciousness, and the cause-and-effect relation between subjective experience and behavior

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