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Most People Use 10% of Their Brain Power


Rose Gan

on 25 November 2012

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Transcript of Most People Use 10% of Their Brain Power

FACT OR FICTION Most People Only Use 10% of
Their Brains Higbee & Clay, 1998 - One of the first best-selling self-help books Abstract "The 10% Myth" The 10% Myth has been referred to as
one of pop-psychology's most wide-
spread myth by Myers (1995) The brain is the center of the
nervous system. It is estimated
to hold 10's of billions of neurons. It is widely believed that we only use 10% of our brains. This notion
has been perpetuated by pop-
culture and proved false by
scientific evidence. Hypothesis Upper year psychology students are less likely
to believe the 10% myth Participants Experimental group:
38 psychology majors
Control Group:
39 introduction to psychology students Results Albert Einstein - The 10% Myth was used to explain Einstein's
brilliance How to Win Friends and Influence People - William James, psychologist Limitless, 2011 - Neil Burger

- Drug has ability to open up "100%
of our brains" Lashley and Franz, 1917 Hypothesis Cortical lesions within the frontal cortex will affect learning and memory of a simple maze Results Even very large cortical lesions did not impair learning or memory in a simple maze Misinterpretation of results by other scientists? The Association Cortex is not silent - Makes up the majority of the brain - Language, abstract thinking, performance
of sensory-motor tasks - Defined as: cerebral cortex outside motor
and sensory areas Glial cell misconception - Outnumber neurons 5-10 - Support, protection, maintaining
homeostasis New Age Positive Thinkers - The 10% Myth was used as a legitimate
reason to strive for more Scientology - Dianetics - The 10% Myth used as recruiter for Scientology The Facts (Beyerstein, 1999) 1) The Evolutionary explanation - Brain tissue is energetically expensive to grow! - 2-3% of body weight, consumes 20% oxygen we
breath 2) Brain Damage Studies - No area can be destroyed without leaving the
patient with deficits (Kolb and Wishaw, 2003) 3) Electrical stimulation and Brain Imaging - EEG, PET, MRI 4) Localization of Function - Mapping of functions to distinct areas of the brain
- Brodmann, 1909 5) Areas overcome by disease of injury do not
remain idle a) The cells degenerate b) Neuroplasticity Conclusion Fact or Fiction? FICTION 32% of psychology majors
26% of control group " About what percentage of their potential brain
power do you think most people use?" Responded with answer: 10% of our brain is used Hypothesis not supported Possible sources "Thought processes are disturbed not only by these engramic commands but also by the fact that the reactive mind reduces, by regenerating unconsciousness, the actual ability to think. Few people possess, because of this, more than 10% of their potential awareness."

"Dianetics: MSMH", 1988 ed., p. xiii Uri Geller, 1996 - Used the 10% Myth to explain Psychic powers - Self- proclaimed psychic - Psychic powers lie in the 90% of the brain that
most have not yet learned to use 10% of our potential ≠ 10% of our brains Figure 1: A 3-D illustration of
Brodmann areas localizing brain
function References Beyerstein, BL (1999). Whence cometh the myth that we only use ten percent of our brains? In S. D. Sala (Ed.), Mind Myths: Exploring Everyday Mysteries of the Mind and Brain (pp. 1–24). Chichester, UK: Chichester, UK.

Brodmann, K. (1909). Vergleichende lokalisationslehre der grobhirnrinde. Barth, Leipzig.

Lashley, KS and Franz, SI (1917) The effects of cerebral destruction upon habitat-formation and retention in the albino rat. Psychobiol 1: 71-139

Kolb, B. and Wishaw, IQ (2003) Fundamentals of human neuropsychology (5th ed.). New York: Worth

Scott O. Lilienfeld, SJ (2010) 50 Great Myths of Popular Psychology: Shattering Widespread Misconceptions. West Sussex, United Kingdom: Wiley Blackwell By Rose Gan - Stimulation Response
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