September 7, 2013

Article: Learning New Language Has Significant Impact on Brain Structure


Learning New Language Has Significant Impact on Brain Structure
by Benita Matilda
August 31, 2013

It has been suggested before by experts that a great way to make one's brain healthier is by learning a new language. Second language boosts brain power. A previous study conducted by researchers at Lund University showed that learning a new language actually makes parts of the brain grow. According to a new joint study, learning a new language alters brain development.

The study was conducted by researchers at the Montreal Neurological Institute and Hospital - The Neuro at McGill University in collaboration with researchers at Oxford University.

According to the study, the task of acquiring a second language after infancy fuels a novel neural growth and links among neurons similar to the one observed at the time of acquiring complex motor skills. For the study, the researchers used software that was developed at The Neuro. They examined the MRI scans of 66 bilingual men and women as well as 22 monolingual men and women living in Montreal region.

On examining the MRI scans the researchers learnt that after infancy, the left inferior frontal cortex turns thicker while the right inferior frontal cortex thins down.

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