Exploring implicit and explicit aspects of sense of agency.
Sense of agency refers to the sense of initiating and controlling actions in order to influence events in the outside world. Recently, a distinction between implicit and explicit aspects of sense of agency has been proposed, analogous to distinctions found in other areas of cognition, notably learning. However, there is yet no strong evidence supporting separable implicit and explicit components of sense of agency. The so-called 'Perruchet paradigm' offers one of the few convincing demonstrations of separable implicit and explicit learning systems. We adopted this approach to evaluate the implicit-explicit distinction in the context of a simple task in which outcomes were probabilistically caused by actions. In line with our initial predictions, we found evidence of a dissociation. We discuss the implications of this result for theories of sense of agency. Copyright © 2012 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.