Modulating the sense of agency with external cues

Moore, James W.; Wegner, Daniel M. and Haggard, Patrick. 2009. Modulating the sense of agency with external cues. Consciousness and cognition, 18(4), pp. 1056-64. ISSN 1090-2376 [Article]

ExternalCuesC&C2009PrePrint.pdf - Accepted Version

Download (344kB) | Preview

Abstract or Description

We investigate the processes underlying the feeling of control over one's actions ("sense of agency"). Sense of agency may depend on internal motoric signals, and general inferences about external events. We used priming to modulate the sense of agency for voluntary and involuntary movements, by modifying the content of conscious thought prior to moving. Trials began with the presentation of one of two supraliminal primes, which corresponded to the effect of a voluntary action participants subsequently made. The perceived interval between movement and effect was used as an implicit measure of sense of agency. Primes modulated perceived intervals for both voluntary and involuntary movements, but the modulation was greatest for involuntary movements. A second experiment showed that this modulation depended on prime-movement (temporal) contiguity. We propose that sense of agency is based on a combination of internal motoric signals and external sensory evidence about the source of actions and effects.

Item Type:


Identification Number (DOI):

Departments, Centres and Research Units:




Item ID:


Date Deposited:

10 Feb 2012 11:15

Last Modified:

29 Apr 2020 15:33

Peer Reviewed:

Yes, this version has been peer-reviewed.


View statistics for this item...

Edit Record Edit Record (login required)