Articles

A Learning Principle of Great Importance: Building a “Pyramid of Repetition”

There is most probably not a single person on this earth who learned to speak a language, learned to swim, skate, play golf, shift gears of a car — or read and write — without repetition. Repetition leads to fast, effortless, autonomous and automatic processing...

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Good Home Learning In Early Years Boosts Secondary School Achievements

The positive effects of a rich home learning environment during a child's early years continue into adolescence and help improve test scores later in life, according to a new study.

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Belief in Learning Styles Myth May Be Detrimental

Many people, including educators, believe learning styles are set at birth and predict both academic and career success even though there is no scientific evidence to support this common myth, according to new research.

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The Brain’s Auto-complete Function. New Insights into Associative Memory

When looking at a picture of a sunny day at the beach, we can almost smell the scent of sun screen. Our brain often completes memories and automatically brings back to mind the different elements of the original experience. A new study now reveals the underlying mechanisms of this auto-complete function.

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Story Time With an E-Book Changes How Parents and Toddlers Interact

Picking what book to read isn’t the only choice families now make at story time — they must also decide between the print or electronic version. But traditional print books may have an edge over e-books when it comes to quality time shared between parents and their children, a new study suggests. The research, led […]

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Academic Achievement Impacts: Parental Involvement, Styles, Income, Media

Parents and researchers alike are interested in how to promote children’s academic competence. Academic achievement has been linked to many factors. In this article we discuss parental involvement, parenting styles, family income, as well as media and digital exposure. 

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Brain’s Primitive Sensory Region also Participates in Sophisticated Learning

Columbia neuroscientists have revealed that a simple brain region, known for processing basic sensory information, can also guide complex feats of mental activity. The new study involving mice demonstrated that cells in the somatosensory cortex, the brain area responsible for touch, also play a key role in reward learning, the sophisticated type of learning that allows the brain to associate an action with a pleasurable outcome. It is the basis for how we connect our work in the office to that paycheck, or that A+ to the studying we did in preparation for the test.

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Learning New Vocabulary During Deep Sleep

Researchers showed that we can acquire the vocabulary of a new language during distinct phases of slow-wave sleep and that the sleep-learned vocabulary could be retrieved unconsciously following waking. Memory formation appeared to be mediated by the same brain structures that also mediate wake vocabulary learning.

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American Girls Read and Write Better than Boys

As early as the fourth grade, girls perform better than boys on standardized tests in reading and writing, and as they get older that achievement gap widens even more, according to research published by the American Psychological Association.

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How Cannabis and Cannabis-based Drugs Harm the Brain

A new study shows that the long-term use of either cannabis or cannabis-based drugs impairs memory. The study, published in the Journal of Neurochemistry, reveals the implications for both recreational users and people who use the drug to combat epilepsy, multiple sclerosis and chronic pain.

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Study: Key Social Reward Circuit in the Brain Impaired in Autistic Kids

Children and adolescents with autism have a surplus of synapses in the brain, and this excess is due to a slowdown in a normal brain “pruning” process during development, according to a study by neuroscientists at Columbia University Medical Center (CUMC).

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Inability to Recognize Faces Linked to Broader Visual Recognition Problems

Imagine that you're supposed to meet colleagues for dinner, only you can't remember what their faces look like. For some, this is a reality, as people with face blindness or developmental prosopagnosia (DP) have severe difficulties recognizing faces, including those of family and friends, despite having no history of brain damage (e.g., brain trauma, head injuries). A new study finds that developmental prosopagnosia often occurs as a result of a neurobiological problem in the brain, which affects visual recognition broadly.

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