Brain & Learning Blog

Scarcity or Abundance – It’s Your Choice (6/2/2017) - Have you ever gone to the grocery store when you’re hungry and ended up buying all kinds of things that weren’t on your shopping list? Ever noticed how when you’re on a diet every single ad seems to feature something delicious you’re not supposed to eat?
Podcast Guest Elizabeth Jameson Does TED Talk (6/2/2017) - Podcast guest, Elizabeth Jameson, is an artist specializing in the intersection of art and science. As a person living with Multiple Sclerosis, she uses neuro-technology to transform her brain scans into a vibrant, unique form of portraiture that celebrates the imperfect body and brain.
Neuroscience and Learning Panel Discussion with Training Journal (5/16/2017) - I recently had the pleasure to join a panel discussion sponsored by the prestigious global magazine, Training Journal. Our host, Jo Cook, was the consummate emcee and kept things moving along. We had over 100 live participants and three scholar-practitioners to answer their questions in real-time.
Look Out! Here Comes the Smart LMS (5/4/2017) - If you were born after 1970, you might not even remember a day in your working life when the Learning Management System (LMS) did not exist. Early iterations of the LMS first started appearing in the 1970s to support a truly disruptive innovation that we now call “eLearning.” Since then, these two learning tools have…
How to Think Like a Millennial (4/30/2017) - According to the Pew Research Group, Millennials are the largest generational cohort in the workforce, but many of us are still trying to understand their needs and expectations. In this post, we look at one of the most significant requirements of this generation: personalization.
This Is Your Learner’s Brain on Coffee (4/18/2017) - It’s been called “America’s number one drug problem” and “a miracle drug for the tired.” Onsite training programs often provide coffee as a refreshment for learners and instructors alike, and its presence in the workplace is so expected that coffee frequently appears on the list of top perks offered in desirable workplaces.
Learningtogo Is a Constant Contact All-Star – Thanks to You! (4/8/2017) - The Learningtogo Brain and Learning newsletter has been awarded the Constant Contact 2016 All Star designation. The annual award recognizes the most successful 10 percent of blogs and newsletters on Constant Contact, based on their significant achievements using email marketing to engage their customer base and drive results for their organization during the prior year.
The Ceiling Effect: How the Height of Your Ceiling Affects Brain Performance (3/30/2017) - I’ve written previously about the influence of other disciplines on the science of learning, such as looking at desire paths, an architectural concept, to help design effective informal learning experiences. Now I’m returning to architecture again, to share how ceiling height can affect the way your brain processes information.
Butterflies, Black Swans and Hummingbirds – Predicting the Future of Learning (3/29/2017) - If you’ve ever watched or read science fiction, you probably know about the “butterfly effect.” The idea is that the gentle flapping of a butterfly’s wings can stir up a hurricane on the other side of the world. What you may not know is that the idea comes from actual science, specifically meteorology.
The Pursuit of Happiness Begins in the Brain (3/25/2017) - Are you happy? Don’t overthink your answer, don’t parse it into happiness in some parts of your life but not others, happy about certain things and not others. These mental gymnastics are clever ways to avoid the central question – are you happy?
Celebrating Brain Awareness Every Day (3/17/2017) - When I started my consulting business more than a decade ago, I was energized by the research papers I was reading from the new discipline of neuroscience and stunned to learn that most teachers and trainers had never even heard the word, let alone started to incorporate these findings into their practice.
Make Your Own Animated Characters and Comic Strips (3/14/2017) - In my workshops I often talk about the power of story to draw the learner into the role of a character, seeing things through his or her eyes.
My Science Manifesto – We’re All Science Workers (3/8/2017) - Last week a colleague of mine gave me some pointed feedback that set me back a bit. “I’m not following you for your political beliefs,” she said. My initial reaction was to deny that I was making any political statements, but the truth is, I was and I knew it.
Your Lazy Brain – Finding the Path of Least Resistance (3/3/2017) - I recently wrote about “desire paths” and learning, linking a concept in architectural design to learning design. Basically, the idea is that our brains naturally look for the easiest path to our destination, so over time users of a system will show the designers where the formal pathways should be. It turns out that your…
Is the Learning Tech Industry Failing Us or Are We Failing Ourselves? (3/1/2017) - Lately things seem to be coming to me in bunches – ideas that appear at first to be distinctly different subjects are starting to merge inside my brain. The last time this happened I tried to make sense of machine learning, artificial intelligence and the Internet of Things. This week I’m thinking about the history…
TMI! Cognitive Overload and Learning (2/16/2017) - If you want to get a sense of the vast amount of data exploding every second, visit Internet Live Stats and watch the numbers for Internet users, websites, emails and many other statistics updated in real time. But watch out – you might find yourself mesmerized by the rolling numbers and the dizzyingly rapid pace…
How to Think Like a Dog (2/12/2017) - I often write about how the human race evolved and how we developed our finely tuned survival machines – our brains. Today I’m going to look into the evolution of a very close cousin of ours – the dog.
How to Think Like a Cat (2/10/2017) - As a cat lover and owner of many wonderful felines, I felt it was time to focus on our other “best friend,” the cat.
It’s Time for Brain-Aware Leadership (2/3/2017) - Training 2017, the conference sponsored by Training Magazine, concluded this week in sunny San Diego. I’ve written before about the value of attending conferences as a learning professional. Of course, the formal learning programs offered at these events give you an opportunity to learn best practices from a wide variety of experts. But the most…
Break Out the Crayons – Your Brain Needs to Color! (1/19/2017) - Coloring is great for kids You probably remember coloring as a child. This entailed filling in the black and white illustrations in the book with any colors you wanted. There are many practical benefits of teaching children about colors.
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