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Educational neuroscience

Early History and Key Figures in Educational Neuroscience: – Educational neuroscience emerged between 1800 and 1850 with the acceptance of the mind being in the […]

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Early History and Key Figures in Educational Neuroscience:
– Educational neuroscience emerged between 1800 and 1850 with the acceptance of the mind being in the brain and the study of brain processing speed.
– William James, Edward Thorndike, and James McKeen Cattell were key figures in the early advancement of educational neuroscience.
– The late 1800s saw these developments categorized as the new psychology.

Brain Development and Its Influence on Learning:
– Nearly all neurons in the human brain are formed before birth, with influences from genetics, environment, experiences, and nutrition.
– Early brain development significantly shapes learning abilities and aids in designing effective educational strategies.
– Understanding neural development contributes to enhancing educational practices.

Neural Mechanisms in Learning and Educational Impact:
– Educational neuroscience investigates neural processes in reading, numerical cognition, and attention, focusing on difficulties like dyslexia, dyscalculia, and ADHD.
– The field aims to influence teaching methodology through neuroscientific findings and bridge the gap between neuroscience and education.
– Applying neuroscientific research findings practically in education is crucial for the advancement of educational neuroscience.

Applications of Neuroscience in Education and Language Development:
– Neuroimaging research supports theories on developmental disorders like dyslexia and offers neural markers for development assessment.
– Differentiating between delayed and atypical development in learning disorders and early identification of potential learning disorders through neural markers are key applications.
– Human language development involves complex neural processes, and educational interventions can impact neural activity and structure.

Mathematics, Numerical Cognition, and Executive Function:
– Mathematical skills are crucial, with dyscalculia affecting a significant percentage of children and being linked to deficits in core systems for number representation.
– Low numeracy can have negative impacts, and cognitive neuroscience research has identified brain systems for basic number processing.
– Attention, executive functions, and preschool training of executive skills are crucial for learning and preventing early school failure.

Educational neuroscience (Wikipedia)

Educational neuroscience (or neuroeducation, a component of Mind Brain and Education) is an emerging scientific field that brings together researchers in cognitive neuroscience, developmental cognitive neuroscience, educational psychology, educational technology, education theory and other related disciplines to explore the interactions between biological processes and education. Researchers in educational neuroscience investigate the neural mechanisms of reading, numerical cognition, attention and their attendant difficulties including dyslexia, dyscalculia and ADHD as they relate to education. Researchers in this area may link basic findings in cognitive neuroscience with educational technology to help in curriculum implementation for mathematics education and reading education. The aim of educational neuroscience is to generate basic and applied research that will provide a new transdisciplinary account of learning and teaching, which is capable of informing education. A major goal of educational neuroscience is to bridge the gap between the two fields through a direct dialogue between researchers and educators, avoiding the "middlemen of the brain-based learning industry". These middlemen have a vested commercial interest in the selling of "neuromyths" and their supposed remedies.

The potential of educational neuroscience has received varying degrees of support from both cognitive neuroscientists and educators. Davis argues that medical models of cognition, "...have only a very limited role in the broader field of education and learning mainly because learning-related intentional states are not internal to individuals in a way which can be examined by brain activity". Pettito and Dunbar on the other hand, suggest that educational neuroscience "provides the most relevant level of analysis for resolving today’s core problems in education". Howard-Jones and Pickering surveyed the opinions of teachers and educators on the topic, and found that they were generally enthusiastic about the use of neuroscientific findings in the field of education, and that they felt these findings would be more likely to influence their teaching methodology than curriculum content. Some researchers take an intermediate view and feel that a direct link from neuroscience to education is a "bridge too far", but that a bridging discipline, such as cognitive psychology or educational psychology can provide a neuroscientific basis for educational practice. The prevailing opinion, however, appears to be that the link between education and neuroscience has yet to realise its full potential, and whether through a third research discipline, or through the development of new neuroscience research paradigms and projects, the time is right to apply neuroscientific research findings to education in a practically meaningful way.

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