Full Text


Robert S. Wyer


Automaticity in information processing is best conceptualized in terms of its antithesis. “Deliberative” processing involves the comprehension and use of information for a particular purpose (e.g., to make a judgment or decision, to communicate to others, etc.). This processing is conscious and intentional; it requires some degree of cognitive or motor effort, and it is volitional. In contrast, behavior is automatic if it does not have one or more of these characteristics. That is, it is unintentional or it is performed unconsciously without awareness or it is effortless or it is unable to be controlled. Although these criteria are not independent, a behavior is often characterized as automatic if it meets any one of them (→  Cognition ; Information Processing ; Mindlessness and Automaticity ). Of the four criteria for inferring automaticity, lack of awareness is most widely investigated. Numerous experiments demonstrate that stimuli to which people are exposed subliminally (below the threshold of conscious awareness) can influence not only the concepts they use to interpret information but also the information they use as a basis for inferences and the standards they employ in making comparisons (→  Experimental Design ). Furthermore, these stimuli can activate goal-directed behavior and can have a direct impact on behavioral decisions (→  Goals, Cognitive Aspects of ... log in or subscribe to read full text

Log In

You are not currently logged-in to Blackwell Reference Online

If your institution has a subscription, you can log in here:


     Forgotten your password?

Find out how to subscribe.

Your library does not have access to this title. Please contact your librarian to arrange access.

[ access key 0 : accessibility information including access key list ] [ access key 1 : home page ] [ access key 2 : skip navigation ] [ access key 6 : help ] [ access key 9 : contact us ] [ access key 0 : accessibility statement ]

Blackwell Publishing Home Page

Blackwell Reference Online ® is a Blackwell Publishing Inc. registered trademark
Technology partner: Semantico Ltd.

Blackwell Publishing and its licensors hold the copyright in all material held in Blackwell Reference Online. No material may be resold or published elsewhere without Blackwell Publishing's written consent, save as authorised by a licence with Blackwell Publishing or to the extent required by the applicable law.

Back to Top