Scientific study of consciousness entered a new era with research focused on finding its neural correlates. The article depicts reasoning underlying this paradigm and controversies it arises using a novel tool designed to measure one’s level of consciousness by means of analyzing EEG signal. Perturbational Complexity Index, created by team led by Guilio Tononi, is used to present theoretical debate concerning the possibility of creating an objective consciousness measure. Stemming from reflections on mechanisms of loss of consciousness, authors of the index infer the informational nature of the phenomena, which is said to be demonstrated by experiments with participants under anesthesia, in deep sleep or suffering from disorders of consciousness. The extraordinary capability of the index to measure the level of consciousness on an individual level and its practical applications are discussed in context of possibility of experimental access to subjective experience.
consciousness, disturbances of consciousness, EEG, diagnosis