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University of Washington launches project to discover fundamentals of early learning
Date:5/24/2010

ared with the academic, early learning, and medical communities so that environments may be designed to maximize learning, taking into account individual differences.

"Behavioral science discoveries have shown that early learning experiences set the foundation for success in school and in life," said Meltzoff, co-director of the Institute." The Developing Mind Project will allow us to combine the science and practice of learning to ensure that all children achieve their full potential as lifelong learners."

The $7 million I-LABS Meg Brain Imaging Center was financed by generous gifts from the Nick and Leslie Hanauer Foundation, the Washington State Life Sciences Discovery Fund, and generous contributions from the University of Washington and philanthropists in the Pacific Northwest. There are few MEG machines in the United States and, in collaboration with scientists at Elekta Neuromag in Helsinki (MEG manufacturer), the UW scientists have achieved what no other laboratory in the world has done. They have customized the scientific designs for babies and developed MEG measures that allow testing of infants and young children as they listen to people talk and act naturally with people and things in their environment. The one-ton machine operates silently and can spatially and temporally map the mental activity of an infant only a few days old, providing important data into how, where and when human learning happens. "MEG is the only whole-brain imaging technology that can be used at all ages to examine learning over a lifetime. Over the next decade it will provide a very powerful tool for exploring the human mind and how people learn," said Kuhl, co-director of I-LABS.

"I-LABS research is critical both for new discoveries about human learning and for improving the early diagnosis of children with medical syndromes such as autism," said Lee Huntsman, Executive Director, Washington State Life Sciences Discovery Fund. "The MEG Brain Imagin
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Contact: Susan Pierson Brown
susan@sevennovember.com
206-409-4693
University of Washington
Source:Eurekalert

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