• Rhonda Douglas Brown
  • Vincent J. Schmithorst
  • Lori Kroeger


In this chapter, we present neuroscience research that addresses the development of the more complex skill of calculation from childhood into adulthood. Cognitive processes related to mathematics achievement are described including the quantity, verbal, and visual systems of Dehaene and colleagues’ triple-code model and domain-specific and domain-general processes. We present results from our research using functional Magnetic Resonance Imaging (fMRI) to examine relationships between neural correlates of calculation and mathematics achievement. Activation in critical brain regions and deactivation of the Default Mode Network (DMN) for a variety of tasks, including exact and approximate calculation and error detection, are illustrated. We also discuss our research using exploratory group Independent Component Analysis (ICA) to reveal separate components of functional activation in bilateral inferior parietal, left perisylvian, and ventral occipitotemporal areas during the mental addition and subtraction of fractions. Taken together, our work provides support for the triple-code model for a variety of tasks. Furthermore, it indicates that domain-specific neuroarchitecture for quantity processing and domain-general processes related to the DMN may act in coordination to perform calculation.


Mathematics achievement Triple-code model Default Mode Network (DMN) Exact calculation Addition Multiplication Working memory Approximate calculation Error detection Fractions 


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Copyright information

© Springer International Publishing AG, part of Springer Nature 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  • Rhonda Douglas Brown
    • 1
  • Vincent J. Schmithorst
  • Lori Kroeger
  1. 1.Developmental & Learning Sciences Research CenterSchool of Education, University of CincinnatiCincinnatiUSA

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