Researchers say left brain vs. right brain is a myth
Have you ever taken a personality test that categorizes you more as an analytical left-brainer, or a creative right-brainer? If so, forget what you were told. According to recent research from the University of Utah, there is no evidence that people preferentially use their left or right brain.
Lead author Dr. Jeff Anderson, director of the fMRI Neurosurgical Mapping Service at the University of Utah, says the preference to use one brain region more than others for certain functions is real, which means that for right-handed people, speech emanates from the left side of the brain. What it does not mean, however, is that great writers or speakers use their left side more than their right or that their left side is more developed than their right side.
Anderson's team examined brain scans of participants ages 7 to 29 while they were resting. They looked at activity in 7,000 brain regions, and examined neural connections within and between these regions. Although they saw pockets of heavy neural traffic in certain key regions, on average, both sides of the brain were essentially equal in their neural networks and connectivity.
While the goal of the study was actually to better understand brain lateralization to treat conditions such as Down syndrome, autism, and schizophrenia, Anderson’s team also put to rest the pop-psychology notion that individuals have a dominant side of the brain.