Law School Academic Support Blog

Editor: Amy Jarmon
Texas Tech Univ. School of Law

Friday, November 2, 2018

New Research on Memory and Marijuana Just Out

Here's some "food for thought" in light of the fact that a number of states have legalized recreational marijuana.  According to National Public Radio ("NPR"), "[a] study published [this past week] in the Journal of Clinical Psychiatry finds that when adolescents stop using marijuana — even for just one week — their verbal learning and memory improve."  https://www.npr.org/  

In the study, researchers recruited a number of teens and young adults (from 16 to 25 years old) who were smoking or otherwise ingesting marijuana regularly.  The researchers then required a group of the volunteers to abstain from marijuana use for 4 weeks.  As detailed by NPR, within one week memory improved for those who abstained in comparison to the results of pre-abstention memory tests while the other group of volunteers, who continued to partake of marijuana, saw no change in their cognitive memory abilities. Based on their study results, the research authors speculate that active cannabis use might be associated with "users having difficulty putting new information into their long term memory," something that is critical for academic success.  

For the scientific details of the research (to include possible limitations of the study's results), please see the article available at the following link:  https://www.psychiatrist.com/JCP/article  (Scott Johns).

https://lawprofessors.typepad.com/academic_support/2018/11/new-research-on-memory-and-marijuana-just-out.html

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