Task performance and beliefs about task responses are solely cerebral exercises

This 2013 human study provided details of which areas of the cerebrum participated in objective performance of a task vs. the subjects’ subjective confidence in their task responses:

“These results suggest the existence of functional brain networks indexing objective performance and accuracy of subjective beliefs distinctively expressed in a set of stable mental states.”

The subjects’ limbic systems were monitored during the fMRI and subsequent reporting, but the subjects’ limbic system areas weren’t activated during any of the experiments.

The researchers demonstrated that both task participation and subjective beliefs about the tasks were only cerebral exercises.

These findings should inform studies such as:

to neither characterize subjects’ task responses as “positive feelings” nor to ascribe emotions such as happiness to the subjects’ cerebral exercises.

http://www.pnas.org/content/110/28/11577.full “Distinct patterns of functional brain connectivity correlate with objective performance and subjective beliefs”

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