What are examples of good sensory essays

Human cognitive abilities

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By Johannes Doll

Cognitive skills are essential human skills. With their help, humans are able to absorb information, process it and gain knowledge from it. In addition, the ability to remember is part of it. It goes without saying that deficits in these skills have serious effects on all areas of life, especially the social dimension. Before I give an overview of the individual skills, I want to present the human senses, as these are essential for individual skills.

Human senses (or sensory conditions)

  • Auditory system (hearing)
  • Vestibular system (gravity and movement)
  • Proprioceptive system (muscles and joints, sense of depth or position)
  • Tactile (haptic) system (touch, sense of touch)
  • Visual system (seeing)
  • Gustatory system (taste)
  • Olfactory system (smelling)

For example, learning is only possible with the help of these senses. Now I want to give a small overview of the cognitive abilities of humans.


attention is the first of the cognitive skills I want to mention. The human brain cannot absorb or process any number of stimuli at once, the resources of the brain are limited. Attention means to allocate these resources to certain things, for example the perception of the environment. Thoughts, feelings and one's own behavior and actions are further examples. So there is a constant selection of the stimuli that hit an individual. If attention is not paid to a stimulus or information within five seconds, the information is lost. A distinction is made between attention (orientation) and selection (selectivity). The former stands for increased alertness and activity, while selectivity separates important and unimportant functions from one another. To which things do people now devote their attention? That depends on various factors; the further a piece of information deviates from a central position, the more "interesting" it is and the more likely it is to be given attention. Among these factors are:
  • Size and stimulus intensity (heat, hunger, ...)
  • Movement (comparison between moving objects, approaching objects, ...)
  • Color (contrasts, color combinations, ...)
  • Sharp and regular delimitation
  • Striking symmetry


perception consists of the steps of recording, interpreting, selecting and organizing so-called sensory information, i.e. information that is received via receptors such as eyes, ears, etc. However, only the information is meant here that is actually processed mentally. If the attention is increased, the perception increases by paying attention to a larger part of the perceived information. In philosophy, on the other hand, it is called the perception on the other hand, as the image of reality in the central nervous system.


In the recognition a term or concept is assigned to a perception. Man creates a model of the environment and usually compares it with a previously existing model.

Memory / remembrance

memory is the ability to take in, store, organize and retrieve information. A distinction is made between the following four processes:

Learning or encoding: new recording of information in the long-term memory

Keep: important information is saved through regular retrieval

Remembering or recalling: reproduction and reconstruction of memory contents

Forget: Due to competing information, memory traces or interferences in retrieval disintegrate.


Learn is the acquisition of individual knowledge or mental and physical abilities and skills. As humans perceive changes in the environment and process this information, their own behavior changes systematically while learning. The ability to remember is of course essential for learning. However, it is not enough to simply save certain information; it must be linked to what is already known and checked for regularities. If you do not apply what you have learned on a regular basis, it can be forgotten. In addition, learning does not always take place consciously, but is often incidental and unplanned. Nevertheless, with appropriate learning methods, you can achieve a learning goal that you have formulated yourself. The human senses mentioned above are essential for learning; only with their help can the necessary information be absorbed in the first place.


abstraction means to process concrete sensory material in such a way that one ignores certain external, accidental or individual characteristics, relationships and properties of the material and instead sets properties of generally valid (or invisible) properties. The formation of models is also an abstraction, since a model never has all the properties and features of the original object, but certain properties or a set of rules are assigned to it (e.g. how something works). There are three forms of abstraction:
  • Generalizing abstraction: Here one looks for generalizations, invariants and overarching features, i.e. everything that a thing must have in order to assign it a certain category.
  • Isolating abstraction: Here one looks for individual, typical features. This is especially important with caricatures, for example, because it directs the viewer to characteristic features of a person, but the person in question still remains recognizable despite the great abstraction.
  • Idealizing abstraction: Here it is assumed that no object is "perfect" and that all objects that actually exist are only approximate expressions of a perfect ideal. If you cut a circle out of paper, it is hardly an exact circle in the mathematical sense, it is an approximation. The human idea of ​​the circle does not come from a pattern, but from an ideal definition.