Nonconscious acquisition of information

Abstract

We are reviewing and summarizing evidence for the processes of acquisition of information outside of conscious awareness (processing information about covariations, nonconscious indirect and interactive inferences, self-perpetuation of procedural knowledge). A considerable amount of data indicates that as compared to consciously controlled cognition, the nonconscious information-acquisition processes are not only much faster but also structurally more sophisticated in the sense that they are capable of efficient processing of multidimensional and interactive relations between variables. Those mechanisms of nonconscious acquisition of information provide a major channel for the development of procedural knowledge which is indispensable for such important aspects of cognitive functioning as encoding and interpretation of stimuli and the triggering emotional reactions

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