Nonconscious learning from crowded sequences

Anne Atas, Nathan Faivre, Bert Timmermans, Axel Cleeremans, Sid Kouider

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

38 Citations (Scopus)


Can we learn complex information without consciousness? Implicit learning — the process through which learning proceeds without awareness of what has been learned — has been the focus of intense investigation over the last fifty years. Yet, as of today, whether complex knowledge can be learned implicitly remains controversial. Here, we address this challenge by asking participants to learn about sequences they fail to perceive consciously. Using an instrumental conditioning task, we show that participants learn to associate distinct sequences of crowded (non-discriminable) symbols with their respective monetary outcomes (reward vs. punishment). Overall, our study demonstrates that sensitivity to sequential regularities can arise through the nonconscious temporal integration of perceptual information.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)113-119
Number of pages7
JournalPsychological Science
Issue number1
Early online date1 Nov 2013
Publication statusPublished - Jan 2014


  • subliminal perception
  • learning
  • decision making
  • rewards
  • punishment


Dive into the research topics of 'Nonconscious learning from crowded sequences'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this