January 14, In Part 1 of this blog, I considered the various definitions of the term epigenetics and the confusion that can arise when they are conflated. Molecular epigenetic mechanisms modify chromatin structure and provide a means to stabilize a particular profile of gene expression.
Organization and Evaluation of Brain Function This module introduces the general external topography of the brain.
To illustrate the relationship between specific behaviors and brain function, the module begins by showing a racecar driver exercising his skill, and then presents graphic illustrations of the internal activity of his brain.
The Effects of Hormones and the Environment on Brain Development This module presents some startling and significant findings relating to the effects of sex hormones on brain development.
Beginning with in utero photography and then visiting an animal laboratory, this module shows how Dr.
Marian Diamond's ground-breaking research has revealed structural differences in the brains of men and women, as well as factors influencing these differences. Social Influences Shifting from the biological focus Brain plasticity essay the previous module, this segment shows how social factors affect gender-specific behaviors.
Mother-child interactions are shown, illustrating typical differences in how male and female children are treated, and how this treatment affects gender identity, roles, and expectations, and perceived differences in ability. Intelligence and Culture The issue of cultural bias in testing is explored in this module, presenting Judy Kearins's work with Australian children.
Theories of cultural influence on cognitive processing and the shaping of the brain are suggested as explanations for tested differences in ability. The Divided Brain This module begins with graphic representations of the cerebral hemispheres' specialized functions.
It continues with a description of the brain's asymmetry, showing diagrams of how the two halves communicate. The extreme case of a patient who has undergone split-brain surgery for treatment of epilepsy illustrates the role of hemispheric organization in sensory perception and verbal skills.
Broca's and Wernicke's Areas The left hemisphere is dominant in this module on language and the brain. Relationships between specific brain areas and verbal processing are shown through the historic example of Dr.
Paul Broca's brain-injury patient. The patient's preserved brain is subjected to CAT scan analysis, which shows correspondence between the damaged area and the patient's documented difficulties with language comprehension.
Brain Anomaly and Plasticity: Hydrocephalus Hydrocephalus, a childhood disorder of excess fluid in the brain, illustrates brain plasticity — the brain's amazing ability to rebound after injury. While patients with this disorder experience compression and destruction of brain tissue early in life, many are able to function normally later in life, after their brains have compensated for the loss.
Elementary Concepts This module depicts the original pioneering research on how the brain's visual systems transmit and encode information.
Researchers at the University of California, Berkeley, present their work on the visual cortex of the monkey using x-ray images.
Two Nobel laureates also recount their serendipitous discovery of "feature detector" cells in the striate cortex that respond only to stimuli of certain sizes or direction of movement.
Perception This module concentrates on higher visual areas beyond the striate cortex, addressing the questions of when seeing becomes perception and where it all takes place.
Face recognition provides an illustrative example — patients suffering damage to their temporal lobes may see familiar faces, yet be unable to recognize them. Inverted Vision The peculiar image inversion process that takes place in the normal visual system is examined in this module.
The program traces the experiences of an art student who volunteers to wear lenses that invert her visual world, connecting the adaptation process she undergoes with how the visual system functions. Graphic animations reinforce understanding of the mechanism involved.
Sensory-Motor Integration Three spectacular dives of Olympic gold-medalist Greg Louganis provide vivid illustration of the human body in motion. The complex visual and motor coordination involved in sophisticated sensory-motor integration calls upon the faculties of the motor cortex, cerebellum, and basal ganglia.
The roles of kinesthesis, vestibular functions, and cutaneous sensitivity are also covered. Nancy Wexler of the Hereditary Disease Foundation and Columbia University recounts her research on the demographics, symptoms, and genetic cause of this debilitating illness. The module also explores ethical and moral dimensions of DNA testing, which can determine who will develop the disease.
Sleep and Circadian Rhythms This module covers our natural rhythms and the stages that occur during sleep. The remainder of the module is devoted to an experiment conducted by Michel Siffre, a French cave explorer, in which Siffre spends seven months in a Texas cave.
Without external cues, the body is shown to have its own built-in clock. Brain Functions What is the purpose of sleep?We’ve all seen the breathless stories about the latest sign of the coming Artificial Intelligence apocalypse, and we’ve all seen the fine print revealing those stories to be empty hype.
So is there anything at all to the AI phenomenon, or is it all just another boogeyman designed to scare us. This is a workbook by Lauren Utter, MA, Massachusetts School of Professional Psychology, to aid adults in helping children understand deportation.
Various aspects of multilingualism have been studied in the field of timberdesignmag.com include the representation of different language systems in the brain, the effects of multilingualism on the brain's structural plasticity, aphasia in multilingual individuals, and bimodal bilinguals (people who can speak one sign language and one oral language).
. Sample answer for essay on research into plasticity and functional recovery (16 marks) - ideal for peer assessment and modelling good practice. Jeremy Fordham explores the cognitive effects of playing Tetris: how the classic puzzle game forces the brain to tackle complex, time-sensitive problems with .
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