Brain & Learning Blog

Combating “The Homer Simpson Effect” (8/25/2017) - You Have to Forget Some Old Truths to Master Essentials of Brain-Based Learning. There really is a "Homer Simpson" effect in neuroscience.
The Google Effect (8/15/2017) - I recently heard a term that was new to me, "The Google Effect." So of course, what did I do? I googled it. It turns out that there’s been quite a lot of research into the effects of online search on our brains and our apparent decline in the ability to remember things.
What Does Marshall Goldsmith Think About Brain Matters? (8/12/2017) - If you look at Brain Matters: How to help anyone learn anything using neuroscience on Amazon, you’ll soon see a new design on the back cover, thanks to a truly wonderful endorsement from my colleague and friend, #1 Coach, Marshall Goldsmith. Dr. Goldsmith served as our keynote speaker at our Brain Matters online conference in…
Four Questions to Ask About Neuroscience and Learning Right Now (8/1/2017) - While social media has given us a whole new way to consume information, it has also shortened our patience for lengthy, nuanced explanations and encouraged us to believe that all opinions are equally valid, so long as we see them on the Internet. In this climate, it can be hard to separate facts from clever…
Knock-Knock! Is Anybody in There? – Why Your Brain is Still Essentially a Black Box (7/24/2017) - Perhaps one of the most unique characteristics of our species is our insatiable obsession with ourselves. Going back to the earliest examples of human cave art, we see evidence of our collective narcissism.
I Reconstructed a Neuron! (7/23/2017) - In a wonderful mash-up of gamification and crowdsourcing, the Mozak brainbuilder helps scientists at the University of Washington’s Center for Game Science by challenging gamers to connect the dots and identify the many dendrites coming from a single cell body. In the past, hard-working graduate students might toil away on this task, possibly making mistakes…
Are You Ready for the Great Eclipse? (7/14/2017) - A wonderful accident has placed our moon at just the right distance from the Earth so that when it gets between the Sun and the Earth we perceive the moon as completely blocking out the Sun. Total eclipses have been considered omens of great events since our earliest ancestors.
The Learningtogo Podcast is #8 for Learning and Development Professionals in 2017 (7/12/2017) - Thanks to everyone who voted for us and everyone who continues to join me as I interview experts from neuroscience, cognitive psychology, education and corporate training to uncover the latest discoveries in how we learn and how our amazing brains work.
Will You Be Replaced by a Robot? (6/23/2017) - In 2016, the World Economic Forum, a think tank about the future, asked talent management officers from a wide range of industries for their take on the Future of Work. In a remarkable demonstration of how the brain can trick us into thinking we’re making purely logical decisions, this group of senior executives identified sweeping…
Can You Make Yourself More Creative? – Exploring the Creative Expectation Effect (6/16/2017) - Has a teacher ever described you as “creative?” Have you ever been asked to provide examples of your creativity in a job interview? If so, you may have a fixed idea of yourself as more or less creative, based on your own personal experience and the feedback of others. But it turns out that’s probably…
What Does It Mean to Be Intelligent? (6/9/2017) - The Singularity is a term you’ll find in science and in science fiction. It was coined by mathematician John von Neumann to define a theoretical moment when the artificial intelligence of computers surpasses the capacity of the human brain. The term is borrowed from physics and quantum mechanics, where the term gravitational singularity is used…
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.
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