Statistical learning and its consequences

Nicholas B. Turk-Browne

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter

26 Scopus citations


Statistical learning refers to an unconscious cognitive process in which repeated patterns, or regularities, are extracted from the sensory environment. In this chapter, I describe what is currently known about statistical learning. First, I classify types of regularities that exist in the visual environment. Second, I introduce a family of experimental paradigms that have been used to study statistical learning in the laboratory. Third, I review a series of behavioral and functional neuroimaging studies that seek to uncover the underlying nature of statistical learning. Finally, I consider ways in which statistical learning may be important for perception, attention, and visual search. The goals of this chapter are thus to highlight the prevalence of regularities, to explain how they are extracted by the mind and brain, and to suggest that the resulting knowledge has widespread consequences for other aspects of cognition.

Original languageAmerican English
Title of host publicationThe Influence of Attention, Learning, and Motivation on Visual Search
PublisherSpringer Science and Business Media, LLC
Number of pages30
ISBN (Print)9781461447931
StatePublished - 2012

Publication series

NameNebraska Symposium on Motivation

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Social Psychology


  • Generalization
  • Memory systems
  • Perception
  • Regularities
  • Selective attention
  • fMRI


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