The purpose of this research is to understand how the brains of children with exceptional intelligence may differ from those of typically developing children. The study will use functional Magnetic Resonance Imaging (fMRI) to study brain functioning while the children are engaged in selected cognitive tasks. These tasks will test their memory, problem solving and creative thinking abilities. The goal of this research is to identify patterns of brain activity correlated with problem solving skills that may lead to improvements in education and in the development of the talents of children.
The study involves two visits to UCLA. During the first visit, the children will perform a battery of tests including measures of intelligence, personality and creativity (which may last 2.5-3.5 hours, depending on the child). During the second visit, children will participate in the MRI portion of the study. They will perform various problem solving tasks involving listening to sounds or viewing pictures and responding by pressing a button. Including the set-up time, practice, instructions, and all of the scanning, the total session will last about 1-1.5 hours, depending on the child.