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Implicit learning: What does it all mean?

  • David R. Shanks (a1) and Mark F. St. John (a2)
  • In response to commentaries on:


In the original target article (Shanks & St. John 1994), one of our principal conclusions was that there is almost no evidence that learning can occur outside awareness. The continuing commentaries raise some interesting questions, especially about the definition of learning, but do not lead us to abandon our conclusion.



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Brewer, W. F. (1974) There is no convincing evidence for operant or classical conditioning in adult humans. In: Cognition and the symbolic processes, ed Weimer, W. B. & Palermo., D. S. Erlbaum.[JJF]
Dawson, M. E. (1973) Can classical conditioning occur without contingency learning? A review and evaluation of the evidence. Psychophysiology 10: 8286. [JJF]
Dawson, M. E. & Furedy, J. J. (1976) The role of awareness in human differential autonomic classical conditioning: The necessary-gate hypothesis. Psychojihysiology 13: 5053. [JJF]
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Furedy, J. J. (1990) Sharing a common language about conditioning requires accurate characterizations of each others’ positions: Reply to Shanks. Biological Psychology 30: 181187. [JJF]
Furedy, J. J. (1991) Alice-in-Wonderland terminological usage in, and communicational concerns about, that peculiarly American flight of technological fancy: The CQT polygraph. Integrative Physiological and Behavioral Science 26: 241247. [JJF]
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Shanks, D. R. & St. John, M. F. (1994) Characteristics of dissociable human learning systems. Behavioral and Brain Sciences 17: 367395. [JJF, PK]
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