Debunking the Right Brain v.s Left Brain Theory

The Right Brain v.s Left Brain theory is often turned into a popular personality quiz. However, the theory was created by Roger W. Sperry in the 1960s to better understand the divided brain. The theory is a test to see which side of your brain is dominant as it correlates to a personality type.

The right side of the brain is intertwined with the conceptions of being imaginative, following one’s intuition, and holistic thinking. A dominant right side resides with traditional art curriculum. The left side of the brain is more analytical, logical, and linear thinking. Ultimately a dominant left side of the brain reveals that an individual is more aligned with STEM curriculum.

Although a personality quiz may be eager to put you in a box, declaring that you are exceptional in art or analytics. Do not let its quick analysis define you nor your skillset. A study from the University of Utah reports that brain activity is similar on both sides despite personality type. The study found no confirmation of dependency on either side of the brain. The study tested the functional connectivity of resonance imaging of the brain. A quote from the study stated, “our data {is} not consistent with a whole-brain phenotype of greater ‘left-brained’ or greater ‘right-brained.’ The study found that no side of the brain is more dominant than the other both sides of the brain are equally utilized. It is important to recognize that different parts of the brain are connected with different functions. An example of this connection occurs in the back of the brain, the cerebellum, which controls balance and muscle control. Yet, the brain does not align with Sperry’s theory.

It is also significant to acknowledge that similar to a growth mindset that one’s habits can evolve. When you choose what you want you can add positive habits into your life, the first step is to identify the pattern you want to change and how it will contribute to your life in the long run.

Forming a habit is a complex process as it develops consciously and unconsciously as over time the act of routine becomes disengaged from an incentive. When a routine is in place, it can be easily provoked as a behavioral response in the form of a habit, whether good or bad, the habit can be accessed unconsciously. The act of being mindful and purposeful of one’s intention can help break old habits and build new ones that allow you to explore different passions.

Article by: Alexis Takagi

Works Cited:

Gardner, B., & Rebar, A. L. (2019, August 20). Habit Formation and Behavior Change – Oxford Research Encyclopedia of Psychology. Retrieved from re-9780190236557-e-129

Nielsen, J. A., Zielinski, B. A., Ferguson, M. A., Lainhart, J. E., & Anderson, J. S. (n.d.). An Evaluation of the Left-Brain vs. Right-Brain Hypothesis with Resting State Functional Connectivity Magnetic Resonance Imaging. Retrieved from

Pietrangelo, A. (2019, March 8). Left Brain vs. Right Brain: What’s the Difference? Retrieved from ​

Article by: Alexis Takagi

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