Using musical training to examine brain plasticity and cognitive skill development

Grant number: DP0449862

Abstract

Until recently, the brain was likened to a computer - hard-wired with minimal response to injury. Exciting new research is altering this view, showing that the brain can change in response to the environment. This study will use sophisticated brain scanning techniques with musicians who have rare, absolute pitch ability. This ability develops with exposure to early training during a critical time period. We will test the relationship between this exposure and changes in brain shape and function. The results will tell us about the interaction between genes and environment, and the way normal development can be enhanced by early experiences.

Researchers