This blog is in response to Jhon's entry "What is Consciousness?". I did this blog as replacement points for missing the discussion CON.
In the blog, it is suggested that when a person is alert, aware, and able to process information they are conscious. However, a person may also be conscious when they are sleeping because it has been shown that their brain is actively processing sensory information. While asleep, a person is conscious of their surroundings and of how comfortable they are.
In order to learn, people must be able to process information AKA be conscious. If a person can learn while awake and conscious, why can't a person learn while asleep and conscious? In chapter 6, there is a section on sleep-assisted learning. Sleep-assisted learning is learning new material while asleep, i.e. playing an informational CD while you sleep. But, sleep-assisted learning is too good to be true. Early findings were encouraging, however they failed to rule out rival hypotheses.
Based on the reasoning stated above, a person should be able to learn while sleeping because they are "conscious". However, research has shown that that is not the case. Sleep-assisted learning does not work.
If a person is truly conscious while they sleep, why doesn't sleep-assisted learning work? Does that mean that a person isn't really conscious while asleep? Or is there different levels of consciousness?