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  1. Understanding the Higher-Order Approach to Consciousness.Richard Brown, Hakwan Lau & Joseph LeDoux - manuscript
    Critics have often misunderstood the higher-order theory (HOT) of consciousness. Here we clarify its position on several issues, and distinguish it from other views such as the global The higher-order theory (HOT) of consciousness has often been misunderstood by critics. Here we clarify its position on several issues, and distinguish it from other views such as the global workspace theory (GWT) and early sensory models (e.g. first-order local recurrency theories). For example, HOT has been criticized for over-intellectualizing consciousness. We show (...)
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  2. The Neural Correlates of Consciousness.Jorge Morales & Hakwan Lau - forthcoming - In Uriah Kriegel (ed.), The Oxford Handbook of the Philosophy of Consciousness. Oxford University Press.
    In this chapter, we discuss a selection of current views of the neural correlates of consciousness (NCC). We focus on the different predictions they make, in particular with respect to the role of prefrontal cortex (PFC) during visual experiences, which is an area of critical interest and some source of contention. Our discussion of these views focuses on the level of functional anatomy, rather than at the neuronal circuitry level. We take this approach because we currently understand more about experimental (...)
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  3. The Emperor's New Phenomenology? The Empirical Case for Conscious Experience Without First-Order Representations.Hakwan Lau & Richard Brown - 2019 - In Adam Pautz & Daniel Stoljar (eds.), Blockheads! Essays on Ned Block's Philosophy of Mind and Consciousness. MIT Press.
    We discuss cases where subjects seem to enjoy conscious experience when the relevant first-order perceptual representations are either missing or too weak to account for the experience. Though these cases are originally considered to be theoretical possibilities that may be problematical for the higher-order view of consciousness, careful considerations of actual empirical examples suggest that this strategy may backfire; these cases may cause more trouble for first-order theories instead. Specifically, these cases suggest that (I) recurrent feedback loops to V1 are (...)
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  4.  7
    Domain-General and Domain-Specific Patterns of Activity Support Metacognition in Human Prefrontal Cortex.Jorge Morales, Hakwan Lau & Stephen M. Fleming - 2018 - The Journal of Neuroscience 38 (14):3534-3546.
    Metacognition is the capacity to evaluate the success of one's own cognitive processes in various domains; for example, memory and perception. It remains controversial whether metacognition relies on a domain-general resource that is applied to different tasks or if self-evaluative processes are domain specific. Here, we investigated this issue directly by examining the neural substrates engaged when metacognitive judgments were made by human participants of both sexes during perceptual and memory tasks matched for stimulus and performance characteristics. By comparing patterns (...)
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  5. Controlling for Performance Capacity Confounds in Neuroimaging Studies of Conscious Awareness.Jorge Morales, Jeffrey Chiang & Hakwan Lau - 2015 - Neuroscience of Consciousness 1:1-11.
    Studying the neural correlates of conscious awareness depends on a reliable comparison between activations associated with awareness and unawareness. One particularly difficult confound to remove is task performance capacity, i.e. the difference in performance between the conditions of interest. While ideally task performance capacity should be matched across different conditions, this is difficult to achieve experimentally. However, differences in performance could theoretically be corrected for mathematically. One such proposal is found in a recent paper by Lamy, Salti and Bar-Haim [Lamy (...)
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  6. Low Attention Impairs Optimal Incorporation of Prior Knowledge in Perceptual Decisions.Jorge Morales, Guillermo Solovey, Brian Maniscalco, Dobromir Rahnev, Floris P. de Lange & Hakwan Lau - 2015 - Attention, Perception, and Psychophysics 77 (6):2021-2036.
    When visual attention is directed away from a stimulus, neural processing is weak and strength and precision of sensory data decreases. From a computational perspective, in such situations observers should give more weight to prior expectations in order to behave optimally during a discrimination task. Here we test a signal detection theoretic model that counter-intuitively predicts subjects will do just the opposite in a discrimination task with two stimuli, one attended and one unattended: when subjects are probed to discriminate the (...)
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  7.  62
    Measuring Away an Attentional Confound?Jorge Morales, Yasha Mouradi, Claire Sergent, Ned Block, Vincent Taschereau-Dumouchel, David Rosenthal, Piercesare Grimaldi & Hakwan Lau - 2017 - Neuroscience of Consciousness 3 (1):1-3.
    A recent fMRI study by Webb et al. (Cortical networks involved in visual awareness independent of visual attention, Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A 2016;113:13923–28) proposes a new method for finding the neural correlates of awareness by matching atten- tion across awareness conditions. The experimental design, however, seems at odds with known features of attention. We highlight logical and methodological points that are critical when trying to disentangle attention and awareness.
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