“New research from Vanderbilt University reveals that this skill is managed by an autopilot, one that is able to catch errors that can fool our conscious brain.
“We all know we do some things on autopilot, from walking to doing familiar tasks like making coffee and, in this study, typing. What we don’t know as scientists is how people are able to control their autopilots,” says Gordon Logan, lead author of the new research. […]
The research is the first to offer evidence of the different and separate roles of conscious and unconscious processing in detecting errors.
“This suggests that error detection can occur on a voluntary and involuntary basis,” Crump, a postdoctoral fellow in psychology, said.
“An important feature of our research is to show that people can compensate for their mistakes even when they are not aware of their errors. And we have developed a new research tool that allows us to separately investigate the role of awareness in error detection, and the role of more automatic processes involved in error detection.””