Thinking Beyond the Brain: Why Neuroplasticity is Overhyped

Lists of exercises to rewire your brain, books about the “plastic” brain… Neuroplasticity has been touted as a magical capability anyone can harness for success. As with many neuroscience-based concepts that made it into mainstream media, the hype starts from a fact: it is true that the adult brain is not hard-wired with fixed neuronal … Read More

What is neurodiversity?

People think, learn, behave, and experience the world around them in many different ways. Some of this diversity is due to neurological differences. Neurodiversity refers to those variations in neurocognitive functioning. Let’s have a look at the origin of the term, and its usefulness in research and practice. A short primer on neurodiversity The term … Read More

An introduction to applied neuroscience

There are many different fields of research in neuroscience. Molecular and cellular neuroscience explores how neurons express and respond to molecular signals, and how they process signals at a physiological and electrochemical level. Cognitive and behavioural neuroscience explores the neurobiological processes that underlie cognition and behaviour. Computational neuroscience uses mathematical models to understand the features … Read More

Impossible colors: our vision’s incomplete palette

We take the way we see the world for granted. But our experience of the world is shaped in part by our visual system—which is both extremely complex and limited. Impossible colors, which are sometimes called non-physical colors, are a great reminder to not consider our perception of the visual world the only possible experience. … Read More

Brain-training games are BS

“Brain Age: Train Your Brain in Minutes a Day!” claims the fifteen-year old Nintendo brain-training app, also known as Dr. Kawashima’s Brain Training. The app consists of mini-games supposedly designed to stimulate various parts of the brain and help combat normal aging effects on the brain. The latest version was released early 2020 in Europe … Read More

Somewhere over the brainbow: a beautiful neuroimaging technique

In the late 1800s, researchers discovered a technique to stain neurons black. Called the Golgi’s method after its inventor Camillo Golgi, an Italian physician and scientist, it allowed us to discover a number of new facts about the organisation of the nervous system, and gave rise to the neuron doctrine—the concept that the nervous system … Read More