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Learning Activity 1 Review questions: suggested answers 1 The cerebral cortex’s functions include information-processing activities such as perception, language, learning and thinking, as well as the planning and control of voluntary bodily movements. 2 The cerebral cortex is the thin (~2 mm) outer layer of the cerebral hemispheres of the brain. 3 The cerebral cortex consists mainly of neurons. 4 Cortical areas may be classifi ed as: • sensory cortex areas, which receive and process information from our different senses • motor cortex area, which receives, processes and sends information about voluntary bodily movements • association cortex areas, which integrate sensory, motor and other information, and are involved in complex mental abilities such as perception, thinking and problem-solving. 5 The larger the cerebral cortex, the more intelligent and mentally capable is the organism. This is because the cerebral cortex is involved in thinking and learning. Thus an organism with a larger cerebral cortex will have a superior ability to learn and therefore to adapt to a changing environment. Learning Activity 2 Review questions: suggested answers 1 a A cerebral hemisphere is half of the brain. The two halves are roughly symmetrical and are joined by the corpus callosum and other strands of nerve tissue. b The hemispheres are similar in size, shape and structure. They also have many common functions and the same part of each hemisphere is responsible for the same function. Each hemisphere also has specialised functions. 2 a The corpus callosum is a strand of nervous tissue that connects the left and right cerebral hemispheres. It is about 10 cm long and 0.75 cm thick. b It is situated deep in the brain, towards the bottom of the cerebral hemispheres. c Its key function is to act as a ’crossover station‘ and main communication pathway for neural messages between the two hemispheres. Thus information can be exchanged between the two hemispheres of the brain. © Learning Activity 5 See diagram on page 83.