Tuesday, October 20, 2009

Search the Net, Get SMARTER!

Did you hear about the big study that came out of UCLA today? Scientists have discovered that in middle-aged and older adults, searching the net might just improve brain function. (Who said an old dog can't learn new tricks???)

Here's what happened. Participants had to do Web searches and read books while getting functional magnetic resonance imaging scans. The scans recorded what was happening in the brain during the participants' activity. Everyone who participated showed significant activity in their brain while reading a book. But only the web-saavy participants showed activity in the decision-making and complex reasoning parts of the brain.

Cool fact #1: The scientists found that Internet searching engages—in their words—"a greater extent of neural circuitry that is not activated during reading."

Cool fact #2: Those participants who had some experience searching the Internet had a twofold increase in brain activation when compared to those who had little or no experience online.

Key learning: Our brains can grow and learn new things as we age.

Read the whole press release online.

Then go do an Internet search. Just think: you are growing your brain while you surf!