I wanted to make sure I was as accurate as possible so I sited dictionary.com. They are usually spot on with the OED.
sentience Spelled Pronunciation [sen-shuhns]
–noun sentient condition or character; capacity for sensation or feeling.
A sentient being is one that is aware of itself - like most humans. So sentience is the character of being aware of oneself. E.g. rocks do not have sentience, while you do.
self awareness, able to identify oneself with a mental capacity.
...I think therefore I am...
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