Encyclopedia of Evolutionary Psychological Science

Living Edition
| Editors: Todd K. Shackelford, Viviana A. Weekes-Shackelford

Brain Development

  • Andrew WeeksEmail author
Living reference work entry
DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-319-16999-6_801-1



Brain development, which occurs rapidly early in life but continues throughout life, involves the interplay of genetic expression and environmental impacts on the growth and maturation of neurons and the connected networks they form.


The human brain is arguably the ultimate result of natural selection. It is the most complex organ in the human body with approximately 100 billion neurons and over 100 trillion synaptic connections. This basic description does not include the billions of supporting cells or the complex genetic, hormonal, chemical, and electrochemical interactions that are constantly occurring. The brain gives rise to our sensations and perceptions, houses our memories, and more generally directs our behavior. Therefore, understanding how the human brain develops is of great interest and importance to many fields of psychology. Generations of scientists have examined brain development in humans...

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Copyright information

© Springer Nature Switzerland AG 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Nipissing UniversityNorth BayCanada

Section editors and affiliations

  • Steven Arnocky
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of Psychology, Faculty of Arts and SciencesNipissing UniversityNorth BayCanada