Westermann, G., Sirois, S., Shultz, T. R., & Mareschal, D. (2006). Modeling developmental cognitive neuroscience. Trends in Cognitive Sciences, 10, 227-232.
In the past few years connectionist models have greatly contributed to formulating theories of cognitive development. Some of these models follow the approach of developmental cognitive neuroscience in exploring interactions between brain development and cognitive development by integrating structural change into learning. We describe two classes of these models. The first focuses on experience-dependent structural elaboration within a brain region by adding or deleting units and connections during learning. The second models the gradual integration of different brain areas based on combinations of experience-dependent and maturational factors. These models provide new theories of the mechanisms of cognitive change in various domains and they offer an integrated framework to study normal and abnormal development, and normal and impaired adult processing.
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