Sharp Brains: Brain Fitness and Cognitive Health News

Neuroplasticity, Brain Fitness and Cognitive Health News


Study: Mastering a new language can promote neural flexibility and increase learning speed

language learningEEG record­ings prove learn­ing for­eign lan­guages can sharp­en our minds (Sci­ence Dai­ly):

Sci­en­tists from the High­er School of Eco­nom­ics (HSE) togeth­er with col­leagues from the Uni­ver­si­ty of Helsin­ki have dis­cov­ered that learn­ing for­eign lan­guages enhances the our brain’s elas­tic­i­ty and its abil­i­ty to code infor­ma­tion…The exper­i­ment has shown that the brain’s elec­tri­cal activ­i­ty of those par­tic­i­pants who had already known some for­eign lan­guages, was high­er. The author of the study, Yuriy Shty­rov com­ment­ed that the more lan­guages some­one mas­tered, the faster the neu­ron net­work cod­ing the infor­ma­tion on the new words was formed. Con­se­quent­ly, this new data stim­u­lates the brain’s phys­i­ol­o­gy: load­ing the mind with more knowl­edge boosts its elas­tic­i­ty.”

Study: Indi­vid­ual lan­guage expe­ri­ence mod­u­lates rapid for­ma­tion of cor­ti­cal mem­o­ry cir­cuits for nov­el words (Sci­en­tif­ic Reports)

  • Abstract: Mas­ter­ing mul­ti­ple lan­guages is an increas­ing­ly impor­tant abil­i­ty in the mod­ern world; fur­ther­more, mul­ti­lin­gual­ism may affect human learn­ing abil­i­ties. Here, we test how the brain’s capac­i­ty to rapid­ly form new rep­re­sen­ta­tions for spo­ken words is affect­ed by pri­or indi­vid­ual expe­ri­ence in non-native lan­guage acqui­si­tion. For­ma­tion of new word mem­o­ry traces is reflect­ed in a neu­ro­phys­i­o­log­i­cal response increase dur­ing a short expo­sure to nov­el lex­i­con. There­fore, we record­ed changes in elec­tro­phys­i­o­log­i­cal respons­es to phono­log­i­cal­ly native and non-native nov­el word-forms dur­ing a per­cep­tu­al learn­ing ses­sion, in which nov­el stim­uli were repet­i­tive­ly pre­sent­ed to healthy adults in either ignore or attend con­di­tions. We found that larg­er num­ber of pre­vi­ous­ly acquired lan­guages and ear­li­er aver­age age of acqui­si­tion (AoA) pre­dict­ed greater response increase to nov­el non-native word-forms. This sug­gests that ear­ly and exten­sive lan­guage expe­ri­ence is asso­ci­at­ed with greater neur­al flex­i­bil­i­ty for acquir­ing nov­el words with unfa­mil­iar phonol­o­gy. Con­verse­ly, lat­er AoA was asso­ci­at­ed with a stronger response increase for phono­log­i­cal­ly native nov­el word-forms, indi­cat­ing bet­ter tun­ing of neur­al lin­guis­tic cir­cuits to native phonol­o­gy. The results sug­gest that indi­vid­ual lan­guage expe­ri­ence has a strong effect on the neur­al mech­a­nisms of word learn­ing, and that it inter­acts with the phono­log­i­cal famil­iar­i­ty of the nov­el lex­i­con.

To learn more:

Leave a Reply...

Loading Facebook Comments ...

Leave a Reply

Categories: Cognitive Neuroscience, Education & Lifelong Learning

Tags: , , , , ,

Watch All Recordings Now (40+ Speakers, 12+ Hours)

About SharpBrains

As seen in The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, BBC News, CNN, Reuters and more, SharpBrains is an independent market research firm tracking health and performance applications of brain science.

Follow us and Engage via…

RSS Feed

Search for anything brain-related in our article archives