Encyclopedia of the Sciences of Learning

2012 Edition
| Editors: Norbert M. Seel

Interactive Skills and Dual Learning Processes

Reference work entry
DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/978-1-4419-1428-6_1633



Interactive skills refer to the general ability to interact with the external world to accomplish a task. A typical interactive task requires the person to look for relevant information and choose the right actions. The complexity of an interactive skill increases as (1) the uncertainty of the outcome of an action increases, (2) when the mapping between recognizable cues and actions becomes more complex, and (3) when there is interdependency between actions and outcomes. An interaction skill involves both explicit and implicit learning processes, and the effectiveness of each kind of process depends on the complexity of the skill. Explicit learning processes refer to processes that require focused attention and involve information that can be verbalized and communicated. Implicit learning processes do not require focused attention and involve information that cannot be easily verbalized and communicated.

Theoretical Background

This is a preview of subscription content, log in to check access.


  1. Ballard, D. H., Hayhoe, M. M., Pook, P. K., & Rao, R. P. N. (1997). Deictic codes for the embodiment of cognition. The Behavioral and Brain Sciences, 20, 723–742.Google Scholar
  2. Fu, W.-T., & Anderson, J. R. (2006). From recurrent choice to skilled learning: A reinforcement learning model. Journal of Experimental Psychology: General, 135, 184–206.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  3. Fu, W.-T., & Anderson, J. (2008a). Solving the credit assignment problem: Explicit and implicit learning of action sequences with probabilistic outcomes. Psychological Research, 72, 321–330.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  4. Fu, W.-T., & Anderson, J. (2008b). Dual learning processes in interactive skill acquisition. Journal of Experimental Psychology: Applied, 14, 179–191.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  5. Holroyd, C. B., & Coles, M. G. H. (2002). The neural basis of human error processing: Reinforcement learning, dopamine, and the error-related negativity. Psychological Review, 109, 679–709.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  6. Keele, S., Ivry, R., Mayr, U., Hazeltine, E., & Heuer, H. (2003). The cognitive and neural architecture of sequence representation. Psychological Review, 110, 316–339.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  7. Petty, R. E., & Cacioppo, J. T. (1981). Attitudes and persuasion: Classic and contemporary approaches. Dubuque: Wm. C. Brown.Google Scholar
  8. Petty, R. E., & Cacioppo, J. T. (1986). The elaboration likelihood model. Advances in Experimental Social Psychology & Aging, 19, 123–205.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  9. Sutton, R. S., & Barto, A. G. (1998). Reinforcement learning: An introduction. Cambridge: MIT Press.Google Scholar
  10. Thorndike, E. L. (1911). Animal intelligence: Experimental studies. New York: Macmillan.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  11. Tolman, E. C. (1932). Purposive behavior in animals and men. New York: Century psychological series.Google Scholar
  12. Waelti, P., Dickinson, A., & Schultz, W. (2001). Dopamine responses comply with basic assumptions of formal learning theory. Nature, 412, 43–48.CrossRefGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC 2012

Authors and Affiliations

  • Wai-Tat Fu
    • 1
  • Jessie Chin
    • 2
  • Wei Dong
    • 1
  • Q. Vera Liao
    • 1
  1. 1.Computer Science and Human FactorsUniversity of Illinois at Urbana-ChampaignUrbana-ChampaignUSA
  2. 2.Department of Educational PsychologyUniversity of Illinois at Urbana-ChampaignUrbana-ChampaignUSA