There’s been a lot of buzz in the news over the past few days about a humongous new longitudinal study being launched by the National Institutes of Health in conjunction with several universities to study the brains of 10,000 kids starting at age 9-10 and on into their early twenties using structural and functional brain imaging along with genetics, neuropsychological, behavioral, and other health assessments. It’s called the Adolescent Brain Cognitive Development Study (ABCD).
It’s going to take two years just to recruit the subjects for the study (now, that’s a big study!). Researchers hope to discover things that will help to direct future educational strategies, child development innovations, research priorities, more effective public health interventions, and science-based policy decisions.
The upside is that scientists are going to compile a lot of new data to inform our understanding of the teenage years. The downside is that we’re going to have to wait 10-15 years before the final results are in. In the meantime, if you’d like to learn about what we already know about the adolescent brain and how that knowledge translates into teaching strategies at the middle and high school level, read my book: The Power of the Adolescent Brain: Strategies for Teaching Middle and High School Students, published by ASCD.
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