The researchers recruited 36 people who were made to do simple time-guessing tasks in which they were asked to press a button when they though 1.7 seconds had passed.
They were then told whether they had pressed the button too soon or too late and were asked to make a guess once again. The researchers analyzed their brain patterns and found that people who learnt from their mistakes displayed a greater electrical brain response compared to those who made the mistake again and again.
"We are always told how important it is to learn from our errors. Why do we all not learn from our experiences in the same way? It seems some people rarely do, even when they were informed of their mistakes in repeated attempts. This study presents a first tantalising insight into how our brain processes performance feedback and what it does with this information, whether to learn from it or brush it aside", lead researcher Professor Joydeep Bhattacharya said.