Literally means below threshold unattended does not

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Literally means “below threshold” Unattended does not mean subliminal Subliminal means the stimulus cannot be consciously perceived But does that mean in access consciousness or phenomenal consciousness? Marcel (1983) Task: Identify color of presented patch Patch is preceded by a word (a prime) that was either: Neutral (table) Matched (color) Priming: RT for match should be faster than neutral Two types of trials Supraliminal Consciously aware of the prime Subliminal Not (phenomenally) consciously aware of the prime Pretest: words presented until chance performance (50%) was reached Predictions
If subliminal perception exists There will be priming in both If subliminal perception doesn’t exist There will only be priming in the supraliminal condition Results Priming occurred in both conditions, but it was larger in supraliminal than in subliminal But was subliminal truly subliminal? What if we define subliminal as unprocessed? Cheesman and Merikle (1984) Subjective vs. Objective thresholds 3 conditions based on the duration of the cue: Subjective duration of cue: Defined by pretest: duration at which participants got 50% correct in forced choice selection of color patch after failure to report word Objective duration of cue: Defined by pretest: duration at which participants got 25% correct in forced patch after failure to report word Supraliminal duration Predictions: Subjective threshold Just like previous study: priming should occur Objective threshold If subliminal perception exists (outside of access consciousness) Priming should be obtained If subliminal perception does not exist Priming should not be obtained Results: No priming at the objective threshold What is meant by “influence behavior”? Cognitive psychologists find effects of subliminal perception to be on the order of 1/20 th of a second increase in RT Social psychologist claim that subliminal perception increases the activation of a concept, which is unlikely to have any long range effects on behavior Karremans, Goelz, Johr, Neumann, Ecker, and Doerr (2009) Subliminally presented drink brand names influenced preference for that brand, but only for those who were thirsty Bermeitinger, Goelz, Johr, Neumann, Ecker, and Doerr (2009) Consumption of a particular brand of dextrose (sugar) pills was influenced by subliminally presented logos, but only for those who were tired Greenwald, Spangenberg, Pratkanis, and Eskenazi (1991) Participants took tests to assess their memory and self-esteem Given subliminal messages embedded in taped nature sounds, classical music, or popular music Tapes were labeled as “memory improvement” or “self-esteem improvement” Label was unrelated to content of subliminal message Listened to tapes each day for one month
After one month: Retested memory and self-esteem Asked if they felt their memory or self-esteem had improved Results: No effect of subliminal message Memory or self-esteem did not improve Effect of tape label

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