Tag Archives: methodology

Praising Researchers, Despite Our Disagreements

This blog often critiques the hype around “brain training.” Whether Lumosity or Tom Brady‘s “brain speed” promises, we’ve seen time and again that they just don’t hold water. Although I stand behind these critiques, I do want to pause and



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Can Teachers Be Trusted to Evaluate Research?

Too often, teachers hear that our judgment about classroom applications of scientific research isn’t to be trusted. And yet, teacher judgment is essential when applying research in the classroom. Given that psychology research affects classroom practice only when teachers use it, why put down the teachers who are essential partners in this process? Our field should focus not on competition, but on respectful collaboration. Continue reading



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There’s No Polite Way to Say “I Told You So”

Back in 2014, Pam Mueller and Dan Oppenheimer made headlines with their wittily titled study “The Pen Is Mightier Than The Keyboard.” In that study, they found that students learn more from taking handwritten notes during a lecture than from



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The Joys (and Stresses) of Teacher/Neuroscientist Collaboration

In an ideal world, teachers and researchers collaborate to bring out the best in each other. So, I might invite Pooja Agarwal to study retrieval practice in my 10th grade English classroom. My students and I benefit because we learn



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Let’s Have More Fun with the Correlation/Causation Muddle

We’ve explored the relationship of correlation and causation before on the blog. In particular, this commentary on DeBoer’s blog notes that — while correlation doesn’t prove causation — it might be a useful first step in discovering causation. DeBoer argues



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Avoiding Extremes: Common Sense in the Middle

Teachers feel passionate about our work. As a result, we can advocate exuberantly — occasionally too exuberantly? — for a particular position. Advocates for (or against) Social-Emotional Learning can make zealous claims for their beliefs. Same for PBL, or direct



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How to Stop Cheating: An Awkward Debate

Despite promising early research, current findings suggest that “moral reminders” don’t prevent cheating. Alas: the “replication crisis” continues… Continue reading



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Using and Misusing Averages: The Benefits of Music?

The “10 Minute Rule” tells us that people can’t pay attention to something for longer than ten minutes. As teachers, therefore, we shouldn’t do any one thing for longer than ten minutes. We need to mix it up a bit.



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Do We Actually Know What We Think We Know?

Teachers trust research when several studies reach the same result. Sadly, the current “replication crisis” means that we don’t always know what we know. Continue reading



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Understanding Scanning Technology: When and Where in the Brain

The good folks over at TedEd have produced another helpful brain video — this one exploring different brain-scanning techniques. This video does a particularly good job exploring both the strengths and the weaknesses of each technology. Location, Location…oh, and Timing



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