Attention is defined as
Information that you are actively processing either consciously or outside of conscious awareness
Selective Attention is defined as
The limitations placed on how much we can focus on a particular stimulus or event at any given moment to the exclusion of others. It is usually difficult to attend to more than one event at a time - especially if it requires a great amount of mental effort.
Selective Inattention is defined as
Avoiding information that may be relevant but emotionally upsetting. Diverting our attention AWAY from our consciousness
Selective Inattention can be..
Helpful (such as trying not to think about how nervous you are before going into and exam) or Unhelpful (such as ignoring a festering wound on your ankle).
Divided Attention is defined as
Attending to and giving equal conscious attention to two or more things at the same time. Can only be achieved if the tasks require very little mental effort (eg. walking and talking)
When is performance poorer with divided attention
When tasks are similar, too complex or unfamiliar.
The Cocktail Party Phenomenon suggests
Much more information is processed in our consciousness than we are actively attending.
An Example of The Cocktail Party Phenomenon is
Being able to block out all other stimuli whilst listening attentively to a person at a party but then suddenly be able to hear your name being spoken on the other side of the room
According to The Cocktail Party Phenomenon what type of information attracts our attention
Novel Stimuli (new or unusual), Changes in stimuli (Volume), Personal Stimuli (your own name)
Automatic Processes are defined as
Activities that require little awareness or mental effort (eg. texting, typing, writing your own name)
Controlled Processes are defined as
Activities that require our full attention and much mental effort (eg texting on a brand new phone)
The process of organizing sensory input and giving it meaning. An awareness of our internal state and external stimuli (eg I feel hungry and there's a lot of noise in the room)
Cognition is defined as
Mental activities such as thinking, problem solving and language. During normal waking consciousness, the brain actively stores information in the memory and we are capable of analysis and reasoning.