The Left Brain Versus The Right Brain: How Does This Impact Learning?

974 words - 4 pages

The purpose of this paper is to determine whether or not different teaching styles have a impact on learning when focused on individual hemispheric differences. For instance if someone is more left brain oriented does teaching methods with that in mind noticeably impact one's ability to learn. In order to set a base to go off of the evolution of the human brain will be covered followed by the brain processing, hemispheric differences, arguments against hemispheric differences and then the educational benefit.
Early development of the brain shows three patterning centers, the ventral, anterior and the dorsal features Westerhausen & Hugdahl (2010). These centers lead to the establishment of the asymmetrical features seen in the left and right hemisphere's of the brain Westerhausen & Hugdahl (2010). In early brain development it is seen that both the left and right hemispheres have different expressed genes and that these genes are a vital role in the developmental stages of the brain Westerhausen & Hugdahl (2010). The differences in the asymmetries of the brain also make behavioral and functional testing possible such as with MRI testing Westerhausen & Hugdahl (2010). Also according to Westerhausen & Hugdahl (2010) "deviations from normal asymmetry or symmetry may be related to superior performance". As you can see early on it is clear that the left and right brain have a large part to play in human development.
How does the brain process information and how does this relate to the left/right hemispheric differences? Using the Hermann Brain Dominance Instrument model the left cerebral hemisphere is found to be analytical as well as the left limbic system being sequential Oflaz. (2011). The right cerebral hemisphere is imaginative and the right limbic system is interpersonal Oflaz. (2011). The left brain therefore can be summed up as being analytical in that it focuses in verbal and numerical processing in a logical fashion Newport. (2014). Meanwhile the right brain is primarily holistic in pattern recognition and spatial relationships so the majority of right brained people tend to be more artistic and visually oriented Newport. (2014). These hemispheric differences can also be seen in cognitive processing used in visual effect testing as a naturalistic stimuli Hubner & Studer. (2009).
While there is numerous evidence of the lateral hemispheric differences there is also arguments to be made that such differences do not correlate to learning. As Newport (2014) says "The notion of different hemispheric thinking styles is based on an erroneous premise: each brain hemisphere is specialized and therefore must function independently with a different thinking style". This is shown by Stanislas Daheane who through neuroimaging studies has found that the left and right brains are active in numerical identification which if others are to believed should be primarily a left brain...

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