Science & Education

, Volume 21, Issue 1, pp 1–31 | Cite as

Learning-Related Changes in Adolescents’ Neural Networks During Hypothesis-Generating and Hypothesis-Understanding Training

  • Jun-Ki Lee
  • Yongju Kwon


Fourteen science high school students participated in this study, which investigated neural-network plasticity associated with hypothesis-generating and hypothesis-understanding in learning. The students were divided into two groups and participated in either hypothesis-generating or hypothesis-understanding type learning programs, which were composed of 12 topics taught over a 12-week period. To measure change in student competence and brain networks, a paper & pencil test and an fMRI scanning session were administered before and after the training programs. Unlike the hypothesis-understanding group, a before and after training comparison for the hypothesis-generating group showed significantly strong changes in hypothesis explanation quotients and functional brain connectivity associated with hypothesis-generating. However, for the hypothesis-understanding group, the brain network related to hypothesis-understanding significantly strengthened, not from hypothesis-generating type learning, but from hypothesis-understanding type learning. These findings suggest that for hypothesis-generating and hypothesis-understanding there are at least two specialized brain network systems or processes at work in the brain. Furthermore, hypothesis-generating competence could be developed by appropriate training programs such as teaching by way of active hypothesis generation rather than present passive expository teaching practices.


Functional Connectivity Middle Frontal Gyrus Work Memory Training Lingual Gyrus Functional Connectivity Network 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.



This work was supported by Basic Science Research Program through the National Research Foundation of Korea (NRF) grant funded by the Korea government (MEST) (Grant No. NRF 2009-0053595).


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media B.V. 2010

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Division of Science Education, Biology Education MajorChonbuk National UniversityJeonjuRepublic of Korea
  2. 2.Department of Biology EducationKorea National University of EducationCheongwonRepublic of Korea

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