Brain Systems Necessary for Learning Language Emerged before Humans

A new study from Georgetown University Medical Center finds that language may be learned in ancient brain systems intended for “general purpose” that appeared before humans and can be found in other animals.brain systems for language

For the study, the scientists analyzed findings of 16 studies that examined language learning in two brain systems, declarative and procedural memory. The studies included 665 participants in total who were given various tasks such as reading, listening, and speaking.

Lead investigator Michael T Ullman, Ph.D., professor of neuroscience at Georgetown University School of Medicine, says: “Our conclusion that language is learned in such ancient general-purpose systems contrasts with the long-standing theory that language modules found only in humans.”