Tag Archives: neuroscience

Brain Research in Translation

Science relies on skepticism, so let’s ask a skeptical question: “Does it really benefit teachers to understand brain research? Isn’t good teaching good teaching?” If you’re reading this blog, you doubtless already see the value that brain research offers teachers.

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“We Can No Longer Ignore Evidence about Human Development”

The more teachers learn about neuroscience and psychology, the more we admire Dr. Mary Helen Immordino-Yang. Unlike most researchers, she has spent time as a classroom teacher. And, her extensive research—in both neuroscience and psychology—offers us wise perspectives on our

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choices harm learning

Why Do Choices Interfere with Your Learning?

At times, choices might help motivate students. However, at other times, choices harm learning. When we distinguish between the two, we help our students. Continue reading

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This Is Your Amygdala on a Cliff…

If you’ve seen the documentary Free Solo, you know about Alex Honnold’s extraordinary attempt to climb a 3000 foot sheer rock face. Without ropes. Without protective gear of any kind. And without, it seems, a typically functioning amygdala. Free Solo briefly

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Life Without Memory: Your Hippocampus and You

Who are you without your memory? In neurobiological lingo: who are you without your hippocampus? The Best-Known Answer No doubt you’ve heard of Henry Molaison, aka H. M., whose hippocampi were removed in order to cure debilitating epilepsy. The good

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new brain cell

Have We Finally Arrived at 2nd Grade?

When I first met him, Kurt Fischer used to say “when it comes to the brain, we’re all still in kindergarten.” (Who’s Kurt Fischer? Well, if you want to connect psychology, neuroscience, and education, you’re following Kurt’s work. He started

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dopamine, motivation, and learning

Is Dopamine For Motivation or Learning?

Neuroscientists talk a lot about neurotransmitters. These chemicals move from one neuron to another at synapses, and in this way help brain cells communicate with each other. We’ve got several dozen different kinds of neurotransmitters. Some you never hear about. When

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slim neural networks

The Neuroscience of Intelligence: “Slim” Neural Networks

Although “more” often seems better, brains can benefit from “less.” Recent research suggests that higher levels of intelligence result from more efficient networks. These slim neural networks result in better processing. Continue reading

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caffeine and cognition

When You Want Higher Brain Entropy, Add Caffeine

Taking caffeine increases your level of “brain entropy,” a measurement of the “different neural states that a brain can access.” High brain entropy just might be good…and so it might also be good for caffeine to raise it. Clearly, the relationship between caffeine and cognition is complicated. Continue reading

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seductive allure of neuroscience

Can You Resist the Seductive Allure of Neuroscience?

The seductive allure of neuroscience often blinds us. In fact, the image on the right shows the part of the brain — the focal geniculative nucleus — that lights up when we’re taken in by false neuroscience information. Ok, no

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