Learning & Memory

image of students studying
Recalling skills often depends on returning to your state of mind — or environment — where you first learned it.
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  • 8 min.
Your selections: Learning and Memory
Research into the razor-sharp hearing of barn owls reveals how we create mental maps of space and may lead to hearing loss solutions.
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The amount of information the brain can store in its many trillions of synapses is not infinite, but it is large enough that the amount we can learn is not limited by the brain’s storage capacity.
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Brain plasticity (from the Greek word ‘plastos’ meaning molded) refers to the extraordinary ability of the brain to modify its own structure and function following changes within the body or in the external environment.
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Molecules that are important in brain development may help treat or prevent brain injuries and disorders.
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From the first large studies monitoring the mental functioning of the same group of healthy humans over many years, scientists have uncovered unexpected results.
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The moment light meets the retina, the process of sight begins. About 60 years ago, scientists discovered that each vision cell’s receptive field is activated when light hits a tiny region in the center of the field and inhibited when light hits the area surrounding the center.
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A major breakthrough in understanding how the brain accomplishes learning and memory began with the study of a person known by his initials, H.M.
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Genes and the environment converge powerfully during early sensitive windows of brain development to form the neural circuits underlying behavior. Although most neuronal cell death occurs in the embryo, the paring down of connections occurs in large part during critical periods in early postnatal life.
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How exactly are memories stored in brain cells? After years of study, much evidence supports the idea that memory involves a persistent change in synapses, the connections between neurons.
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From remembering a friend's face to figuring out where you left your keys, the act of memory has many dimensions.
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One of the most prominent human abilities is language, a complex system involving many components, including sensory-motor functions and memory systems.
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Decision-making is such a seamless process we’re usually unaware of it — until our choice results in unexpected consequences. Then we wonder, “Why did I choose that option?”
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3D Brain

An interactive brain map that you can rotate in a three-dimensional space.