Navigation Links
Brain power shortage
Date:7/16/2012

Can you teach an old dog (or human) new tricks? Yes, but it might take time, practice, and hard work before he or she gets it right, according to Hans Schroder and colleagues from Michigan State University in the US. Their work shows that when rules change, our attempts to control our actions are accompanied by a loss of attention to detail. Their work is published online in the Springer journal Cognitive, Affective, & Behavioral Neuroscience.

In order to adapt to changing conditions, humans need to be able to modify their behavior successfully. Overriding the rules we adhere to on a daily basis requires substantial attention and effort, and we do not always get it right the first time. When we switch between two or more tasks, we are slower and more likely to commit errors, which suggests switching tasks is a costly process. This may explain why it is so hard to learn from our mistakes when rules change.

The authors explain: "Switching the rules we use to perform a task makes us less aware of our mistakes. We therefore have a harder time learning from them. That's because switching tasks is mentally taxing and costly, which leads us to pay less attention to the detail and therefore make more mistakes."

A total of 67 undergraduates took part in the study. They were asked to wear a cap, which recorded electrical activity in the brain. They then performed a computer task that is easy to make mistakes on. Specifically, the participants were shown letter strings like "MMMMM" or "NNMNN" and were told to follow a simple rule: if 'M' is in the middle, press the left button; if 'N' is in the middle, press the right button. After they had followed this rule for almost 50 trials, they were instructed to perform the same task, but with the rules reversed i.e. now if 'M' is in the middle, press the right button; and if 'N' is in the middle, press the left button.

When the rules were reversed, participants made more consecutive errors. They were more likely to get it wrong twice in a row. This showed they were less apt to bounce back and learn from their mistakes. Reversing the rules also produced greater control-related and less error-awareness brain activity.

These results suggest that when rules are reversed, our brain works harder to juggle the two rules - the new rule and the old rule - and stay focused on the new rule. When we spend brain energy juggling these two rules, we have less brain power available for recognizing our mistakes.


'/>"/>

Contact: Joan Robinson
joan.robinson@springer.com
49-622-148-78130
Springer
Source:Eurekalert

Related medicine news :

1. Exercise Can Shield the Aging Brain, Studies Show
2. Mayo Clinic creates tool to track real-time chemical changes in brain
3. The Ben & Catherine Ivy Foundation contributes $10 million to TGen for brain cancer research
4. Brain Scans Using New Dye May Predict Alzheimers
5. Strong communication between brain and muscle requires both having the protein LRP4
6. Better treatment for brain cancer revealed by new molecular insights
7. Pediatric tumors traced to stem cells in developing brain​​
8. Electrical brain stimulation can alleviate swallowing disorders after stroke
9. Study of Retired NFL Players Finds Evidence of Brain Damage
10. Study finds new gene mutations that lead to enlarged brain size, cancer, autism, epilepsy
11. Kernicterus Brain Damage in Babies Linked to Medical Malpractice
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
(Date:10/13/2017)... ... October 13, 2017 , ... The Visiting Nurse Association (VNA) of Somerset Hills ... specialty vendors and unique items from across the nation, this holiday-themed event will raise ... offered by the VNA. The boutique will be open Saturday, November 4 (10:00 ...
(Date:10/13/2017)... ... , ... Yisrayl Hawkins, Pastor and Overseer at The House of Yahweh, has ... least understood books in the Holy Scriptures, Revelation. The Book of Revelation paints a ... centuries. Many have tossed it off as mere rubbish, but Yisrayl Hawkins says that ...
(Date:10/13/2017)... ... 2017 , ... “The Journey: From the Mountains to the Mission Field”: the ... in the Philippines. “The Journey: From the Mountains to the Mission Field” is the ... She has taught all ages and currently teaches a class of ladies at her ...
(Date:10/12/2017)... ... October 12, 2017 , ... ... treating sleep apnea using cutting-edge Oventus O2Vent technology. As many as ... disorder characterized by frequent cessation in breathing. Oral appliances can offer significant relief ...
(Date:10/12/2017)... ... October 12, 2017 , ... IsoComforter, Inc. ( https://isocomforter.com ), one ... an innovative new design of the shoulder pad. The shoulder pad provides optimal ... controlling your pain while using cold therapy. By utilizing ice and water that is ...
Breaking Medicine News(10 mins):
(Date:9/28/2017)... , Sept. 28, 2017 Cohen Veterans ... advance the use of wearable and home sensors for ... disorders. Early Signal Foundation, a nonprofit organization focused on ... will provide an affordable analytical system to record and ... ...
(Date:9/23/2017)... , Sept. 22, 2017 Janssen Biotech, ... complete response letter from the U.S. Food and Drug ... approval of sirukumab for the treatment of moderately to ... indicates additional clinical data are needed to further evaluate ... to severely active RA. ...
(Date:9/18/2017)... ALLENTOWN , Pa. and KALAMAZOO, Mich. ... Allentown, Penn. , and OptiMed Specialty Pharmacy ... a business partnership to offer a strategic hub service ... PMD Healthcare,s highly sought-after personal spirometer, Spiro PD 2.0, ... A spirometer is a medical device used ...
Breaking Medicine Technology: