Authors: National Association of Special Education Teachers

University of Queensland researchers have discovered a key mechanism in the brain that may underlie our ability to rapidly focus attention. Our brains are continuously bombarded with information from the senses, yet our level of vigilance to such input varies, allowing us to selectively focus on one conversation and not another. Professor Stephen Williams of the Queensland Brain Institute at UQ explains, "If we want to give our full concentration, something happens in the brain to enable us to focus and filter out distractions." "There must be a mechanism that signals the thing we want to focus on." However, this mechanism is not well understood, he says. Research has shown that the electrical activity of the neocortex of the brain changes, when we focus our attention. Neurons stop signaling in sync with one another and start firing out of sync. Read More

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