Humans are always using the perception in our everyday life. Perception is an experience which, result from stimulation of the senses. When we walk, listen, talk, see, and touch an object we use perceive things.

Movement also facilitates perception. The starting of perception is with Bottom-up processing which receptors are involved. Also building blocks called Geons are responsible for us being able to recognize objects. This is backed up by the Recognition-by-Components theory.

When I was about 9 year old, back home in the Caribbean I used to run around like a wild animal. Climbing trees, eating fruits, and touching anything I could reach.  One day, I was looking for something on the ground which was covered with leafs. On the corner of my eye I saw what I thought it was a black (dark colored) stick. I went to grab it, and then I gave notice it was a short, black snake.  I perceive and acted by reaching to grab the “stick”. Then I recognize the object not to be a stick, but it was a snake.   We take into account, physical regulatory and semantic regulatory when we perceive.

In conclusion, we all use our perception in our everyday life.  We perceive stimuli and then take action towards these stimuli. My story is similar to that of Crystal but at the same time we have different stories. Both perceptions involved a process. The only thing is that her perception of the objects kept changing as she got closer. My perception of the object was different from the corner of my eyes, which it changed once I looked at it directly. Two processing streams in my brain were responsible for the depth and object perception which I used in what I described above.

Work Cited:

Cognitive Psychology Connecting Mind, Research, and Everyday Experience. Goldstein, E. Bruce. 2011. Third Edition. Wadsworth, Cengage Learning.

7 thoughts on “Perception

  1. Timothy Clark Sadler

    This is a very good post for this blog. I particularly liked it because my mind has played tricks on me like this as well. I drive approximately fifteen to twenty hours a week to attend classes and visit family. During these times I always make sure to have an energy drink and snacks close by to keep myself awake on the road. Along with myself on these drives comes my wife, daughter and 2 dogs. My German shepherd rides shotgun and he gets the second cup holder for his water cup. I was driving at about 3 A.M. and went for my drink and took a big gulp of it, little did I know I had put his cup in my cup holder. needless to say I got a mouthful of drool water. This is an example of Top-Down processing where my brain processed where my cup normally is so I had zero thought process to look at the cup I merely drank what I picked up.
    Work Cited:
    Cognitive Psychology Connecting Mind, Research, and Everyday Experience. Goldstein, E. Bruce. 2011. Third Edition. Wadsworth, Cengage Learning.

  2. Zoe Elizabeth Hoch

    Your story fit perfectly with perception! To elaborate on the Recognition by Components Theory, or RBC, which “provides a principle of undecided relation between classical principles of perceptual organization and pattern recognition” (Biederman, 1986). This recognition components theory has many different stages as well as areas to focus on including curvature, symmetry and parallels as well as others. Geon’s are involved in the recognition components theory, which makes up the components mentioned above to the theory. Steps that happen involve the early distraction stage, parsing, arrangements, and representation. Biederman (1986), made a flow chart to simply describe these steps, which go as follows: “edge extraction” goes to either “detection of nonaccidental properties” or “parsing at regions of concavity”. Either of these will then flow to “determination of components” leading to “matching of components to object representation” ending finally with “object identification” which, is our end result in how we perceive the world. Early edge extraction is “responsive to differences in surface characteristics namely, luminescence, texture, color, provides line drawing description of an object” (Biederman, 1986). Parsing is “critical constraints” to the identity. Representation of memory can be matched to these two components (Biederman, 1986). Once the object makes it to the retina, RBC “assumes that a representation of an object is segmented in to regions at cusps which discontinue into curvature” (Marr & Nishihara, 1978 as cited in Biederman, 1986).

    Works Cited:
    Biederman, I. (1986, June 3). Recognition-by-Components: A Theory of Human Image
    Understanding. Retrieved October 8, 2015, from

  3. Ivan David Rogers

    A very interesting post. It actually made me think back to when I was a child. One day I was outside playing and decided to start collecting Samara (also referred to as Poly noses.) At one point, I saw what I perceived as a clear Samara on top of a leaf. As I went to grab it and tried to pull it off the leaf, I actually discovered that it was a wing to a Cicada. Even after hearing it made a noise, I did not negatively react until I visually saw the wing connected to the insect. Back then I did not really over think the situation. I just thought simply that I was grabbing a Samara, but after reading this post, it’s interesting to think that there is a more in-depth reasoning to how that event transpired. It does make me feel relieved though after reading the post and a few comments that I am not alone in experiencing a situation that is similar to this one.

  4. Maria Ann Weaver

    Your story of your experience made me smile. I too have had a similar experience with a snake but my reaction was very dramatic as I do not like snakes. Another experience I’ve had with perception involves a deer. I was driving to work one morning and the sun was just coming up. Deer in my area are very hard to see this time of year because of their dark color and the darker color of the woods line. I spotted what I thought was a deer standing along the side of the road so I started to slow down. Once I got a good look at what I really saw, I felt so stupid because I had traffic behind me that had to slow down too. After getting closer to the object, I realized it was just a tree stump on the embankment with a brown mailbox beside it. From a distance it looked like a deer standing and facing oncoming traffic with its head to the side. I laughed at myself for how stupid I felt but I’m glad I slowed down just in case it actually was a deer. It’s amazing how the mind can play tricks on us at times.

  5. Wendy Estright

    I have had a similar experience with what I believed to be a black shoelace in our basement. I reached out to pick up the shoelace and it moved. It was a baby black snake. Our kids were big into wearing different colored shoelaces in their shoes than what the shoes came with so I just perceived it as a black shoelace until I got close enough to almost grab it. My prior knowledge and expectations of what should be located in our basement made me believe that the object I was seeing was a shoelace.
    By using top-down processing I was able to identify that the object was really a snake not a shoelace. With the geons what I was able to see and the movement of the snake, I used prior knowledge of what a snake looks like and what movements a snake makes to recognize the object for what it really was.

    Cognitive Psychology Connecting Mind, Research, and Everyday Experience. Goldstein, E. Bruce. 2011. Third Edition. Wadsworth, Cengage Learning.

  6. Katie-lynn Mae Miller


    I enjoyed reading your post on perception and I like that you gave a personal story about a time that you perceived something as something different than it actually was. More than once before, I have perceived something as different than it actually was. For example, I work with my laptop on my couch sometimes and I’ll have it plugged in with the battery next to me and also the tv remote because my little brother watches cartoons while I work. I once picked up the remote thinking that it was my battery because I have these two black items next to each other that are similar in size and color. But then I looked down and realized that I grabbed the wrong thing. It is quite interesting how our brain works and how perception works. We can perceive one thing as something but then we get a closer look and our brain registers that what we are looking at wasn’t exactly what we originally thought that it was.

  7. Melissa Phillips

    Wow I can only imagine how things are perceived in new places! By this I mean if I went to the Caribbean, I too would probably perceive things in a more familiar way like you had done with the stick/snake. Something in with leaves that was dark in color I would probably automatically think its a stick too, only because I do not see snakes often. (The stick being more familiar).

    Usually when things are familiar, we are able to perceive them as such. When they are not, our brains need to re-process the visual stimuli in order to define it (Goldstein, 2011). In this case, your perceptions change based on added info. Although you were able to process and re-process the info so quick, your brain really performed two complex tasks of reasoning between objects to better perceive the potential danger you were so very close too!


    Cognitive Psychology Connecting Mind, Research, and Everyday Experience. Goldstein, E. Bruce. 2011. Third Edition. Wadsworth, Cengage Learning.

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