Insight is described as the sudden solution of a problem and is contrasted with an analytical, step-by-step approach. Traditionally, insight is thought to be associated with activity of the right hemisphere, whereas analytical solutions are thought to be associated with activity of the left hemisphere. However, empirical evidence as to the localization of insight-related brain activity is mixed and inconclusive. Some studies seem to confirm the traditional view, whereas others do not. Moreover, results of EEG and fMRI studies frequently contradict each other. In this study, EEG and fMRI data were recorded while subjects performed the remote association test and for each solved problem were asked to report whether the solution was reached analytically or insightfully. The data were analyzed in a 16-second fragment preceding the subject’s response. Source localization techniques were used in the analysis of EEG data. Based on EEG data, insightful as compared to analytical problem solving was accompanied by high-frequency synchronization in semantic cortical areas of the left hemisphere 10–12 s before the subject’s response. Based on fMRI data, however, insightful solutions were accompanied by increased activity in frontal and temporal regions of the right hemisphere. The results are interpreted in terms of different cognitive processes involved in insightful problem solving, which could be differently reflected in EEG and fMRI data.
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