misinterpretation of sensory data

Valerie Jeffcoat posted Feb 1, 2022, 3:13 AM


· Research scholarly articles on optical illusions and explain what research has been done in this area. Explain why optical illusions occur, providing specific reasons.

Color, light, and patterns may generate optical illusions that deceive or deceive our minds (Carbon, 2014). The brain analyzes the information gathered by the eye, resulting in a perception that differs from the real image. Optical illusions have most likely been seen by humans for as long as they have existed. Even though retinal pictures are flat representations on a curving surface, humans can see in three dimensions in some optical illusions (Wackermann, 2020). The brain must use interpretative rules to obtain three-dimensional information from confusing two-dimensional visuals. Many optical illusions, particularly those involving the sense of geometry, have mathematical relationships.

Mathematicians utilize optical illusions in the classroom to interest pupils and develop their visual abilities (Wackermann, 2020). It’s neither an optical illusion nor a misinterpretation of sensory data. They are expressions of the visual system’s principles. The study of optical illusions in both laboratory and natural settings adds a lot to our knowledge of vision and the nature of the visual world (Wackermann, 2020). For many decades, scientists have been attempting to find out how optical illusions operate. Unfortunately, we don’t always understand how our brain and eyes work together to generate these deceptions. The information gathered by our eyes travels a lengthy and convoluted path to the brain.

· Research scholarly articles regarding bottom-up and top-down information processing and explain what research has been done in this area. Describe some examples of the two types.

Bottom-up processing starts with the recovery of sensory data from our surroundings in order to construct perceptions based on the present visual data (Goldstein, 2015). The interpretation of new data based on existing information, experiences, and expectations is known as top-down processing. We know that past information, experience, and expectations are important in establishing perceptions of new stimuli in top-down processing, therefore previous knowledge, experience, and expectations are the driving force in top-down perception. In contrast, no learning is necessary in bottom-up processing, and perceptions are simply dependent on fresh stimuli from one’s present external environment, implying that the stimulus now being experienced inside one’s external environment is the driving force of perception in bottom-up processing.

Yet, research on this topic has demonstrated that interpretation is a top-down technique when the stimulus is presented briefly and the meaning is uncertain, resulting in an ambiguous stimulus. Bottom-up processing, on the other hand, is a way in which there is a continuous flow from the individual components to the total system (McMains & Kastner, 2011). When attempting to decipher complicated handwriting, top-down processing occurs. It is simpler to comprehend full sentences than simple and isolated phrases since the meaning of the words around them gives a framework for comprehension. When we process from the bottom up, it’s called bottom-up processing. If you see a picture of a single letter on your screen, your eyes transfer the information to your brain, which then combines it (McMains & Lastner, 2011).


Carbon C. C. (2014). Understanding human perception by human-made illusions. Frontiers in human neuroscience, 8, 566.

Goldstein, E. B. (2015). Cognitive Psychology: Connecting Mind, Research and Everyday Experience, (4th ed.). Cengage Learning. ISBN: 9781285763880.

McMains, S., & Kastner, S. (2011). Interactions of top-down and bottom-up mechanisms in human visual cortex. The Journal of neuroscience: the official journal of the Society for Neuroscience, 31(2), 587–597.

Wackermann, J. (2020). Optical Illusions. Salem Press Encyclopedia of Science.