B6 - The Brain and learning.

 Brain development, memory, studying the brain and the ability to learn

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Memory ­ the STORAGE and RETREIVAL of information. SHORT TERM & LONGTERM
short term lasts for a few seconds or hours e.g. input from senses or long term memories being
recalled. Long term lasts for days, months, years. PATTERNS, REPETITION & STRONG STIMULI (bright
colours, strong smells) help us remember.
Studying the Brain ­ to find out what each part of the cortex can do to help the diagnosis and
treatment of brain disorders (Alzheimer's disease) and brain damage (stroke). STUDYING PATIENTS
WITH BRAIN DAMAGE seeing what effects a certain area of damaged brain has on the patient.
ELECTRICALLY STIMULATING putting tiny electrodes into the tissue, observing what stimulating a
certain part does, so you get an idea of what the part does e.g. motor area ­ muscle contraction
and movement. MAGNETIC RESONANCE IMAGING SCANNER (MRI) produces detailed picture of
the brain, you can see which parts are active when people are doing things e.g. trying to recall a
Cerebral cortex ­ outer part, folded structure ­ INTELLIGENCE, MEMORY, LANGUAGE,
Brain development ­ There are billions of neurones in the brain therefore you can: MODIFY
behaviour) Connections between neurones form as a child experiences new things ­ when a neurone
is stimulated by experience it branches out. Repetition strengthens pathway, therefore they are
more likely to transmit impulses. After around aged 10 pathways that aren't used DIE ­ makes it
harder to learn when you're older.
Learning ­ so you can adapt to new situations Complex animals are more adaptable than simple
animals due to the variety of potential pathways in the brain (trillions) Some skills can only be learnt
at certain ages e.g. talking before 10 ­ evidence being feral children


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