Cognitive Processes and Theoretical Models

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A theoretical model is a theoretical and schematic representation of reality using idealized abstractions, objects. The process of cognition is aimed at acquiring knowledge about the phenomena and laws of the objective world. Cognition can be of various forms, has two levels, and the direct philosophical and methodological discipline aimed at studying the structure of knowledge is called epistemology. The most commonly used model of cognition separates sensory and rational cognition or abstract thinking. Sensory cognition includes perception, sensation, and representation, while the second part of rational cognition includes concept, judgment, and inference. Sensuality, in turn, can be divided into natural and unreal, which either reflect the real world or are a figment of the imagination. Separate from these two types of cognition is applying sensory experience and rational knowledge in one’s activity.

With rapid successive visual stimulants of attention, the person’s ability to communicate the second of the two goals is reduced. Attentional Blink is an effect that has been central to characterizing the limits of a person’s ability to consciously perceive stimuli distributed over time (Dux & Marois, 2009). Scientifically, this process is explained by the fact that processing the first signal always affects the reallocation of memory resources for other purposes and suppression of distractions before the second signal. Certain cognitive activities such as coding for working memory, episodic recording, and tailoring of responses do not allow the same set of resources to be manifested to the second signal at low latency (Dux & Marois, 2009). This effect is a stimulant for a person in the development of selective attention to cognitively learn to identify behaviorally significant events and separate them in the aspect of attention.

Research shows that meditation and other emotional focusing techniques improve attentional response to the second signal. A team of scientists has shown that 8-week meditation programs affect the processing of attention stimuli, promoting a more balanced allocation of resources concerning emotional information (Roca & Vazquez, 2020). Therefore, it can be concluded that the model describing the blinking of attention should include aspects of emotional intelligence, sensory perception, and selective attention.

Finally, there is another reasonably fresh approach to attention blinking. It includes not only the essential aspect of the time that is established between the first and second signals but also the frequency of oscillations, which themselves participate in the control of human consciousness. Such vibrations control human sleep and attention itself. The nature of these fluctuations has not yet been fully understood in the context of this effect. However, studies show a certain amount of influence (Shapiro et al., 2017). Endogenous brain vibrations contribute to human cognitive activity. Therefore, at specific frequencies, the perception of the second signal improves, which confirms this theory.

Face Recognition Model

Theoretical models of face recognition are widely used in our time. For example, many works can be found in the field of forensic science and machine learning. However, this model takes its origins from psychology, the works of scientists that laid the foundation and identified the main factors in identifying familiar faces. Recognizing a familiar face is just one of many cognitive operations that the brain performs on faces. It is assumed that there are seven different types of information that we receive from the faces we see; they are labeled as graphical, structural, visually derived semantic, individual semantic, name, expression, and facial speech codes (Bruce & Young, 1986). This model can be described as follows: the process of structural description analyzes facial speech, the expression of emotions. Previously saved similar descriptions are reviewed for overlaps. This type of activity is carried out in the so-called face recognition units. After that, the semantic codes establish the identity of the person who owns the recognized person, and only after that, the codes of the names are extracted. At the same time, active work is underway in differentiating between the usual similarities of a person with a friend and his direct identification. This task is entirely multifactorial and multicriteria and laid the foundation for future models.

This approach also served to create a two-process theory of facial processing, which was based on Gabriel Horn’s theory of child imprinting. This model describes the process of face detection by eye contact and the process of sensory processing of the received visual information. Research in these areas allows a better understanding of the process of facial recognition in humans and a better understanding of the functioning of the brain and its constituent parts (Johnson et al., 2015). The neural and computational processes of human cognitive activity are still being studied, but such models make it possible to bring scientists closer to understanding pattern recognition mechanisms.


A person’s cognition or cognitive activity is a rather complex and voluminous process that includes many factors and aspects. One of the many models describing such factors is the attention blinking model and face recognition methods discussed in this work. Suppose the first model is more focused on the nature of the human body, the peculiarities of its perception. In that case, the second model already describes a more complex process of cognitive activity, operating with a much larger number of involved neural systems. Nevertheless, these approaches are widely used in related fields of science, give impetus to technological progress and allow for a better study of the structure and processes inside the human body.


Bruce, V., & Young, A. (1986). Understanding face recognition. British Journal of Psychology, 77(3), 305-327.

Dux, P. E., & Marois, R. (2009). The attentional blink: A review of data and theory. Attention, Perception, & Psychophysics, 71(8), 1683-1700.

Johnson, M. H., Senju, A., & Tomalski, P. (2015). The two-process theory of face processing: modifications based on two decades of data from infants and adults. Neuroscience & Biobehavioral Reviews, 50, 169-179.

Roca, P., & Vazquez, C. (2020). Brief meditation trainings improve performance in the emotional attentional blink. Mindfulness, 11(7), 1613-1622.

Shapiro, K. L., Hanslmayr, S., Enns, J. T., & Lleras, A. (2017). Alpha, beta: The rhythm of the attentional blink. Psychonomic Bulletin & Review, 24(6), 1862-1869.

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PsychologyWriting. "Cognitive Processes and Theoretical Models." July 3, 2022.