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October 25, 2004

EFL Boosts Grey Matter

The BBC reported recently on a study that shows how language study affects growth of the brain. In particular, it revealed that learning a second language actually alters grey matter, and strongly suggested that the younger the learner, the greater the effect. "Researchers from University College London studied the brains of 105 people - 80 of whom were bilingual. They found learning other languages altered grey matter - the area of the brain which processes information - in the same way exercise builds muscles. People who learned a second language at a younger age were also more likely to have more advanced grey matter than those who learned later, the team said. Scientists already know the brain has the ability to change its structure as a result of stimulation - an effect known as plasticity - but this research demonstrates how learning languages develops it."
Learning languages 'boosts brain'

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