One way beliefs produce pleasure and reward in the cerebrum

This 2014 Singapore human study found: “Differences in belief learning – the degree to which players were able to anticipate and respond to the actions of others, or to imagine what their competitor is thinking and respond strategically – was associated with variation in three genes which primarily affect dopamine functioning in the medial prefrontal … Continue reading One way beliefs produce pleasure and reward in the cerebrum

Kids who have a larger and better-connected hippocampus learn math better when tutored

This 2013 Stanford study of 24 eight- and nine-year-old children found that measurements of limbic system areas predicted how well the 11 boys and 13 girls would respond to 8 weeks of one-on-one math tutoring! “Pretutoring hippocampal volume predicted performance improvements. Furthermore, pretutoring intrinsic functional connectivity of the hippocampus with dorsolateral and ventrolateral prefrontal cortices … Continue reading Kids who have a larger and better-connected hippocampus learn math better when tutored

Who benefits when research promotes a meme of self-sacrifice?

The main purpose of this 2014 Illinois human study was to make findings directed toward high school students that: “Well-being may depend on attending to higher values related to family, culture, and morality, rather than to immediate, selfish pleasure.” The study’s messages to young people and to those who control young people were: You have … Continue reading Who benefits when research promotes a meme of self-sacrifice?

Teenagers value rewards more and are more sensitive to punishments than are adults

This 2013 human study found that adolescents placed more value on rewards than did adults. Adolescents were also more sensitive to punishments than were adults. Cerebral areas increased activity when the expected value of the reward increased. Limbic system areas increased activity when the expected value of the reward decreased. The left ventral striatum was … Continue reading Teenagers value rewards more and are more sensitive to punishments than are adults