YSJU The Brain Development and Functioning in Adolescence Discussion

I’m working on a psychology discussion question and need an explanation and answer to help me learn.

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Are teenage brains really different than adult brains? We are going to look at differences in brain functioning as individuals enter adolescence, and how changes in brain functioning impact adolescent decision-making.

Thisbrief video (Links to an external site.)summarizes research by Dr. Adriana Galván from the Developmental Neuroscience Lab at the University of California. Her research highlights differences in how the adolescent brain responds to rewards. For a more in-depth look at her work, you can also watch her TedTalk.

I am also including a link to an article (Links to an external site.) from Mindful Magazine that highlights the work of Dr. Daniel Seigel from the UCLA Mindful Awareness Research Center. In this article he discusses three myths about adolescence and the brain changes impact how adolescents think, relate to others, and make decisions.

Use information from the videos and articles and information presented in Chapter 9 to write informed answers. While there is plenty of room for personal reflection and sharing opinions/observations, there is a great deal of research on this topic and your answers should be well-informed. Feel free to include other information or sources and be make sure to cite your sources.

Answer the following questions:

Respond to the following:

  1. How is the progression of brain development (from the back, to the front of the brain) reflected in teenage behavior and decision-making? Why are teenagers more likely to make risky decisions when compared to others?
  2. Explain what Dr. Galván has found in her research on the teenage brain and reward center of the brain. What differences did she observe between how a teenage brain responds to rewards, and a child or adult brain? How might this difference be reflected in teenage behavior?
  3. In his book, Brainstorm, and mentioned in the linked magazine article, Dr. Seigel noted that “Adolescence is not a stage to simply get over; it is a stage of life to cultivate well.” What did he mean by this, and what is your take on this idea? Be sure to substantiate your views. Can you think of any teens who might embody what Dr. Seigel is talking about and how do they embody this idea?
  4. Reflect on the three myths discussed by Dr. Seigel in the magazine article OR write a paragraph that gives a script for how you might explain the following to a teenager: a) how their brain development affects their decision-making, 2) what research-based suggestions could help them overcome biases in decision-making.

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