Neuroscience is a new and important field with implications for every aspect of how people move, think, and behave. Neuroscience research has made its greatest contributions to the study of cognitive development by illuminating mechanisms that underlie behavioral observations made earlier by psychologists. It has also made important contributions to our understanding of cognitive development by demonstrating that the brain is far more plastic at all ages than previously thought—and thus that the speed and extent by which experience and behavior can shape the brain is greater than almost anyone imagined.

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