Self-awareness not unique to Mankind: Study

A new study has unveiled that not only in humans, but self-awareness is common in animals as well. Humans and animals capable of mentally stimulating environments need a sense of self awareness.

Study's co-author Thomas Hills from University of Warwick's department of psychology said, "The study's key insight is that those animals capable of simulating their future actions must be able to distinguish between their imagined actions and the actions that are actually experienced".

The researchers shared that they were quite impressed with the work carried out in the 1950s on maze navigation in rats. In the maze, the rats took breaks to decide what to do next and then they proceeded. The study researchers said that when the rats took break then they activated regions of their hippocampus that simulated choices and their potential results.

The researchers came up with different models that explained the process behind the rats' actions. They affirmed that in test animals, the areas of the hippocampus were more active. The evidence has confirmed that most animals are self-aware.

It shall however, be noted that the level of self-awareness in animals is not at the same level of human beings. But, the research has shown that mice also have the basics of self-awareness needed to have a sense of self. This sense of self helps animals in hunting, foraging and mating.