These studies help explain why teens behave with such vexing inconsistency: beguiling at breakfast, disgusting at dinner; masterful on Monday, sleepwalking on Saturday. Along with lacking experience generally, they're still learning to use their brain's new networks. Stress, fatigue, or challenges can cause a misfire. Abigail Baird, a Vassar psychologist who studies teens, calls this neural gawkiness—an equivalent to the physical awkwardness teens sometimes display while mastering their growing bodies. The slow and uneven developmental arc revealed by these imaging studies offers an alluringly pithy explanation for why teens may do stupid things like drive at 113 miles an hour, aggrieve their ancientry, and get people (or get gotten) with child: They act that way because their brains aren't done! You can see it right there in the scans!
PUBLISHED: Sept. 16, 2011
LENGTH: 16 minutes (4055 words)
Today it is as hard to keep up with Sir Roger Bannister's mind as it once was to keep up with his feet. With the offer of tea and biscuits out of the way, Sir Roger, 82,…
LENGTH: 3 minutes (772 words)