Most experts in brain science and education warn that the distance between the laboratory and the classroom is too vast for scientists to tell teachers how to do their jobs.
But that doesn’t mean neuroscience has nothing to contribute to education.
For example, neuroscientists and educators are working together to better understand biologically-based learning disabilities such as dyslexia.
They hope to find ways to diagnose those problems sooner and adjust teaching to eliminate or at least soften their impact.
Two prominent researchers in that field — Virginia Berninger and Joanna Christodoulou — will be among the keynote speakers at a conference near Seattle-Tacoma International Airport on Oct. 8-11. The conference’s sponsor is the National Institute for Learning Development, an organization that provides training on learning disabilities for educators.
Berninger is an educational psychologist at the University of Washington who focuses on the interaction of genetics and experience when it comes to learning how to read and write. We featured some of her research in a recent Education Lab story.
Christodoulou is a developmental cognitive neuroscientist who has conducted research at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Harvard University and the MGH Institute of Health Professions. Here’s a paper she co-wrote about the uses and misuses of neuroscience in education.
She will be speaking on the latest findings in neuroscience related to learning disabilities.
More information about the conference, which will be held at the Embassy Suites hotel near Sea-Tac, is available here.