Monday, Sep 11 2023

Mathematics education has positive effects on cognitive abilities and brain development (and no such education has contrary effects)

Original posted by xinhe

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Scientific Articles

  • Arsalidou, M., Pawliw-Levac, M.,  Sadeghi, M. &  Pascual-Leone, J. (2018). Brain areas associated with numbers and calculations in children: Meta-analyses of fMRI studies. Developmental Cognitive Neuroscience, 30, 239-250.
  • Peters, L. & De Smedt, B. (2018). Arithmetic in the developing brain: A review of brain imaging studies. Developmental Cognitive Neuroscience, 30, 265-279.
  • Zhang, Y., Liu, S. & Shang, X. (2021). An MRI Study on Effects of Math Education on Brain Development Using Multi-Instance Contrastive Learning. Frontiers in Psychology, 12.




Explanation of the Post

A fascinating perspective on experience-related brain neuroplasticity is provided by brain imaging studies on academic performance, which help to comprehend how children’s growing brains alter as they learn culturally imparted abilities like mathematics and reading. Learning mathematics has been connected to a number of development and quality-of-life indicators and has a significant impact on the brain’s flexibility and mental abilities. The application of mathematical ideas to a person’s growth may therefore be made simpler by understanding these relationships.

Arsalidou et al. (2018) stated that the distinct areas of the cortex frequently become active when mathematical calculations are performed differently from one another. Based on the research conducted by Kawashima et al. (2004), the mental operations of addition, subtraction, and multiplication are related to a number of shared areas in the brain. Additionally, the middle frontal gyrus’s concentration of γ-aminobutyric acid was found to be strongly correlated with mathematical reasoning and learning in Georege et al.’s study on the effects of inadequate levels of knowledge about mathematics on the development of the brain. This demonstrates the impact that a poor mathematical education has on cognitive abilities and brain development.

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