Give Rest To Brain And Learn Second Language Faster

Posted: Jul 1 2016, 4:28am CDT | by , in News | Latest Science News

 
Give Rest to Brain and Learn Second Language Faster
Photo Credit: Getty Images

Don't Miss: This How to find Fingerlings in Stock

Neuroscientists have found that the resting-state brain activity - the neural activity that goes on while we are doing nothing in particular - helps some people learn new languages faster.

"The way someone's brain functions while at rest predicts 60 per cent of their capacity for learning a second language," said study author Chantel Prat from University of Washington.

In the small yet significant study, published recently by the US Office of Naval Research, 19 participants between the ages of 18 and 31 with no previous experience learning French, visited Prat's lab twice weekly over eight weeks for 30-minute French lessons delivered through a virtual-reality computer program called Operational Language and Cultural Training System (OLCTS).

OLCTS is designed to make military personnel proficient in a foreign language after 20 hours of training. The program guides users through a series of scenes and stories. A voice-recognition component enables users to check their pronunciation.

For five minutes before and after the eight-week curriculum, Prat had participants sit still, close their eyes, breathe deeply and wear an EEG (electroencephalogram) headset measuring resting-state brain activity from the cerebral cortex - an area of the brain crucial to memory, attention and perception.

"The brain waves we recorded reflect synchronized firing of large networks of neurons," Prat said.

"We found that the larger the networks were in 'beta' frequencies (brain frequencies associated with language and memory), the faster our participants learned French," he added.

To confirm this, at the end of the eight-week language program, participants also completed a proficiency test covering the lessons they had finished. Those with the larger "beta" networks learned French twice as quickly.

However, Prat pointed out that language learning rates were the only things predicted by the recorded brain activity. Participants with smaller "beta" networks still learned the material to which they were exposed equally well.

"There's more that goes into learning a new language than speed," Prat said. "You also have to factor in motivation, study habits and practice methods," he added.

Holiday Gift Guides and Deals

Get your Holiday gifting inspired by Best Toy Gifts with High STEM Value and the Top 10 toy gifts under $10 if you are on budget. The most popular Holiday 2017 toy list include Fingerlings, Crate Creatures and more. Don't miss the new Holiday deals on Amazon Devices, including $29.99 Fire tablet.

This story may contain affiliate links.

This free App Solves You Holiday Shopping Problem


Download the free Tracker app now to get in-stock alerts on Fingerling, Luvabella, SNES Classic and more.

Latest News

Comments

The Author

<a href="/latest_stories/all/all/59" rel="author">IANS</a>
The Indo-Asian News Service (IANS) was established in 1986, initially to serve as an information bridge between India and its thriving Diaspora in North America. Now IANS is a full-fledged wire agency, putting out news 24x7 from around the world.

 

 

Advertisement

comments powered by Disqus