Theories Of Perception Essay

How the head works during perceptual experience have been one of the enigmas of the head. Cognitive psychological science is involved in the probe and the apprehension of behaviours that is caused by cognitive operation. If developmental psychological science had to cover with the nature-nurture argument. the theories of perceptual experience are by and large conceived either as a bottom-up attack or the top-down attack. The bottom-up attack says that perceptual experience ocular stimulation is dependent on the features of the stimulation. if the stimulation has the right colour. form. strength and background. so the head would readily comprehend the stimulation ( Noe . 2004 ) .

On the other manus. the top-down attack says that perceptual experience is influenced by old experience and acquisition. wherein perceptual experience is dependent on what the head have antecedently known and conceived about the stimulations ( Noe . 2004 ) . Therefore. the head has a kind of scheme that guides the head in placing the stimulation presented to him/her. It is besides interesting to observe that perceptual experience as with everything else is shaped by the societal and cultural context in which it occurs.

In a conservative civilization. same sex matrimonies may be perceived as immoral and unnatural. but to civilizations who have endorsed homosexualism do non comprehend it as such. In another illustration. a Catholic whenever he sees a cross or a church would certainly do the mark on the cross while a Protestant or a Baptist would non. In order to exemplify the difference between the two attacks to perception the undermentioned illustrations are provided.

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The ability to appreciate an abstract picture is an illustration of the bottom-up attack. The single sing the picture do non hold any thought what the picture is and what it depicts. The head so processes the picture in footings of the different colour gradients. forms. spacial features and so attempts to show a consistent whole that the head can understand ( Marr. 1982 ) .

Therefore. an abstract picture can be interpreted in different ways since the spectator may pull strings the different shots. colourss and lines to organize an object or a figure that is delighting to the oculus. However. our perceptual experience of what the abstract picture represents can be affected by the cultural orientation of the percipient. A individual coming from a really structured environment may happen the abstract picture worthless as he can non understand it for it lacked construction. while a individual who is really open-minded may happen the painting a challenge since it makes him believe.


The celebrated look “looking for a acerate leaf in a haystack” is an illustration of the top-down attack. The look is meant to convey trouble in happening a specific object or individual. but when we look at it cognitively. it is non that hard. The individual who must happen the needle already have a construct of what the needle looks like. it is thin. shiny and has a crisp border ( Gregory. 1990 ) . This information could hold been formed during old brushs with a needle. therefore the undertaking becomes easier because the individual has to concentrate merely on one thing. and that is the acerate leaf.

He/she may extinguish the hay straws since they do non look like a acerate leaf. However. it would hold been a different scenario if the individual tasked with happening the acerate leaf has non had any experience with a acerate leaf. an illustration is Sleeping Beauty. Due to the ostracism of the spindle in her land. she did non cognize what it looked like and hence she got pricked by one and was placed on a enchantment. Similarly. civilization daze may besides be caused by the deficiency of anterior experience or cognition of what the new civilization will be like. hence the person is overwhelmed with the new stimulation.

Bottom-up and Top-down

The perceptual procedure involved in the perceptual experience of an object embedded in the background includes the bottom-up and top-down attack. The individual directed to happen the objects hidden in the image will first expression at the image and so analyse its features and what it represents so he/she will look for the forms. lines or a displacement in colour or deepness ( bottom-up ) to find where the concealed objects might be found.

When the individual has found the concealed object and identifies what it is. he/she so proceeds to look for the other objects guided by the cognition of what the object would be ( top-down ) . If the concealed object is every bit cosmopolitan as a face. so placing it would non be hard. but if it were an vague figure like a zodiac mark. so merely those who have had anterior cognition of zodiacs would be able to happen the concealed object.


Gregory. R. L. ( 1990 ) . How do we construe images? In H. Barlow & A ; C. Blakemore & A ; M.

Weston-Smith ( Eds. ) .Images and Understanding. Ideas About Images. Ideas

About Understanding( pp. 310-330 ) . Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.

Marr. D. ( 1982 ) .Vision.New York: W. H. Freeman and Sons.

Noe . A. ( 2004 ) .Action in Percept. Cambridge. Ma: MIT Press.


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