Unborn Can Hear, Remember at 20 Weeks

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In a fascinating new discovery, scientists at England's Keele and Bath Universities have demonstrated that unborn babies begin to hear and remember as early as 20 weeks -- at least four weeks earlier than previously thought.

According to The London Telegraph, (29 March 1998) researchers found that the fetus at 20 weeks had memory and perceptive capacity in the lower part of the brain, the thalamus. Scientists had believed that, because the upper part of the brain -- the cortex -- did not develop until weeks later, the unborn child could not hear.

In the study, researchers played music for unborn children at 20 weeks. Then they tested the response of babies two to three weeks after birth, and observed that their responses indicated they remembered the musical selections, and were soothed by replay.

Source: American Family Association, May 1998

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Posted 9 Sep 2000.

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