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Pavlov’s Tween: Why Adolescence is Perfect for Brain Training

New research published in Nature Communications has found that adolescents’ brains react more responsively to receiving rewards. (If you’re curious, the World Health Organization defines adolescence as the period between the ages of 10 and 19.)

Although this strong reward system can lead to risky behavior, it can also be used to make learning easier. It’s something that we at LearningRx have been putting to work in our personal brain training programs for decades.

In the study, which used MRI scanners, researchers found that if the adolescent received useful feedback, the corpus striatum was activated.

At LearningRx, we know that immediate feedback is one of the seven key ingredients of effective brain training, along with targeting, loading, sequencing, intensity, practice and a one-to-one trainer-to-student ratio. We’ve trained more than 100,000 brains over the last three decades and have found that instant, effective reinforcement and adjustments keep training focused and intense.

If you look at the research on LearningRx, most of the students who have gone through personal brain training see effects that transfer to real life in terms of grades, confidence, behavior and how long it takes to do homework. In fact, the results of nearly 18,000 adolescents (average age 12.3) who went through LearningRx personal brain training showed that IQ scores jumped from 97 to 111 after students completed a LearningRx program.

Of course, brain training has worked for people of all ages. We’ve had clients well into their 80s! But if you’ve been on the fence about whether or not to bring your tween or teen in for a cognitive skills assessment, there’s no time like the present!