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Understanding the adolescent brain

Apr 26, 2019

In this video, Sarah-Jayne Blakemore a leading neuroscientist of adolescent development, summarises what researchers currently know about the developing adolescent brain.  In an easy to understand way, Sarah-Jayne describes the brain structures, functions and behaviours unique to young people. This includes the phenomena of ‘synaptic pruning’ in which gray matter, which is mostly found in the cortex, declines dramatically during adolescence and synapses that aren't being used are pruned away or eliminated.

Sarah-Jayne’s research focuses on understanding the increase in risk-taking and peer influence during adolescence in relation to brain development and changes.  In the video, she discusses her research looking at cognitive processes like self-awareness, the understanding of other people, self-identity development, and risk taking during this period of life.

Watch Sarah-Jayne Blakemore "The adolescent brain" (38 minutes)