Scientists say active early learning shapes the adult brain


An enhanced learning environment during the first five years of life shapes the brain in ways that are apparent four decades later, say Virginia Tech and University of Pennsylvania scientists writing in the June edition of the Journal of Cognitive Neuroscience.

“Our research shows a relationship between brain structure and five years of high-quality educational and social experiences,” said Craig Ramey, professor and distinguished research scholar with the Fralin Biomedical Research Institute at VTC and principal investigator of the study. “We have demonstrated that in vulnerable children who received stimulating and emotionally supportive learning experiences, statistically significant changes in brain structure appear in middle age.”

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