Research Topic

The Depth and Complexity of Unconscious Processing

About this Research Topic

The level of unconscious processing has always been a concern for researchers in the field of cognitive science. Many studies have reported the existence of unconscious information processing. For example, different types and different levels of masked unconscious stimuli, such as pointing arrows, numbers, words, emotional faces and so on, are found to be processed unconsciously. However, it is not clear to what degree of complexity unconscious processing can be performed.

In recent years, some studies reported that multiple subliminal stimuli can be integrated. Unconscious integration of information is a process that generates a new representation from two or more unconscious component representations, as it is performed in relational judgments, combining multiple features to generate a new, third emerging representation, and so on. These emergent representations can influence later decisions. Still, other studies reveal that conscious, top-down attentional processes can modulate unconscious information processing. These findings further enrich the study of unconscious information processing. In daily life, we can be struck with a sudden idea without any hint, which might indicate the selectivity of the many unconscious processes in the brain.

A small number of studies have found that the brain activities before an individual decides can already determine the contents of the decision.
Similarly, in the clinical field, long-ago experiences are found to unconsciously influence individuals’ current lives, suggesting a link between memory and unconscious processing. However, the complexity of unconscious processing goes beyond that.

This Research Topic aims to broaden our understanding of unconscious/implicit information processing with a particular focus on the analysis of the complexity of unconscious information processing and its relation to learning.

We welcome theoretical and empirical articles using neuroimaging and behavioral methods focusing on, but not limited to:

• unconscious processing of information during decision-making and learning
• the unconscious information integration process
• selective processing of multiple unconscious stimuli
• the relationship between conscious and unconscious information processing
• the link between memory/learning and unconscious processing


Keywords: Unconscious information processing, Implicit processing, Unconscious information Integration, Unconscious selective information processing, Relationship between unconscious and conscious processing


Important Note: All contributions to this Research Topic must be within the scope of the section and journal to which they are submitted, as defined in their mission statements. Frontiers reserves the right to guide an out-of-scope manuscript to a more suitable section or journal at any stage of peer review.

The level of unconscious processing has always been a concern for researchers in the field of cognitive science. Many studies have reported the existence of unconscious information processing. For example, different types and different levels of masked unconscious stimuli, such as pointing arrows, numbers, words, emotional faces and so on, are found to be processed unconsciously. However, it is not clear to what degree of complexity unconscious processing can be performed.

In recent years, some studies reported that multiple subliminal stimuli can be integrated. Unconscious integration of information is a process that generates a new representation from two or more unconscious component representations, as it is performed in relational judgments, combining multiple features to generate a new, third emerging representation, and so on. These emergent representations can influence later decisions. Still, other studies reveal that conscious, top-down attentional processes can modulate unconscious information processing. These findings further enrich the study of unconscious information processing. In daily life, we can be struck with a sudden idea without any hint, which might indicate the selectivity of the many unconscious processes in the brain.

A small number of studies have found that the brain activities before an individual decides can already determine the contents of the decision.
Similarly, in the clinical field, long-ago experiences are found to unconsciously influence individuals’ current lives, suggesting a link between memory and unconscious processing. However, the complexity of unconscious processing goes beyond that.

This Research Topic aims to broaden our understanding of unconscious/implicit information processing with a particular focus on the analysis of the complexity of unconscious information processing and its relation to learning.

We welcome theoretical and empirical articles using neuroimaging and behavioral methods focusing on, but not limited to:

• unconscious processing of information during decision-making and learning
• the unconscious information integration process
• selective processing of multiple unconscious stimuli
• the relationship between conscious and unconscious information processing
• the link between memory/learning and unconscious processing


Keywords: Unconscious information processing, Implicit processing, Unconscious information Integration, Unconscious selective information processing, Relationship between unconscious and conscious processing


Important Note: All contributions to this Research Topic must be within the scope of the section and journal to which they are submitted, as defined in their mission statements. Frontiers reserves the right to guide an out-of-scope manuscript to a more suitable section or journal at any stage of peer review.

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Submission Deadlines

06 March 2020 Abstract
11 September 2020 Manuscript

Participating Journals

Manuscripts can be submitted to this Research Topic via the following journals:

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Topic Editors

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Submission Deadlines

06 March 2020 Abstract
11 September 2020 Manuscript

Participating Journals

Manuscripts can be submitted to this Research Topic via the following journals:

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