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Biopsychology - The Brain

6. Plasticity and Functional Recovery

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About this Lecture


In this module, we think about the plasticity of the brain and the recovery of brain function after trauma. We begin with a definition of ‘brain plasticity’ as a term describing the brain’s ability to change, e.g. to develop from the brain of a newborn into an adult brain. Next, we consider a classic study by Blakemore and Cooper (1970) which investigated the effect of plastic changes in the brain of young kittens on their later development. We then consider how the brain’s plasticity can help to counteract certain birth defects before moving on to think about functional recovery in the brain after trauma. In particular, we focus on four factors which may contribute to the recovery of brain function: (i) the reduction of swelling, (ii) axonal sprouting, (iii) neurogenesis and (iv) constraint induced therapy.


In this course, Mr Kevin Silber (University of Derby) discusses the anatomy and function of the human brain. We begin, in modules one and two, by looking at how the brain is structured before moving to think about the localisation of different functions in particular areas of the brain on in module three. Module four considers the lateralisation of certain brain processes in the two hemispheres, while module five looks at split-brain research. Finally, we think about brain plasticity and the recovery of brain function after trauma in module six.


Mr Kevin Silber is a senior lecturer at the University of Derby where he primarily teaches biological psychology modules. Mr Silber is also an AQA A-Level examiner and is involved in authoring texts for A-Level psychology. Having started life as a neuroscientist, Mr Silber’s research interests still lie in biologically oriented topics. However, his main research interest is now focused on body image. Some of Mr Silber’s recent publications include ‘Working memory in children: A developmental approach to the phonological coding of pictorial material’ (2011) and ‘Sexual orientation and the sleep-wake cycle: A preliminary investigation’ (2000).

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APA style

Silber, K. (2019, September 27). Biopsychology - The Brain - Plasticity and Functional Recovery [Video]. MASSOLIT.

MLA style

Silber, K. "Biopsychology - The Brain – Plasticity and Functional Recovery." MASSOLIT, uploaded by MASSOLIT, 27 Sep 2019,

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