Neuromyths: Awareness, Predictors, and Using Mind-Brain-Education (MBE) Science to Design and Teach for Student Success

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Brief Abstract

Come and test your awareness of neuromyths and evidence-based practices related to the brain and learning. Using six Mind, Brain, and Education (MBE) principles as a framework, this interactive session will share findings and research from an international OLC study that included instructors, instructional designers, and professional development administrators from online, blended, and onsite education programs across public, private, and for-profit institutions. Panelists will discuss predictors of awareness of neuromyths and evidence-based practices. Leave with innovative MBE strategies and extensive resources to support student success.

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Dr. Kristen Betts is a Clinical Professor in the School of Education at Drexel University. Dr. Betts has over 20 years of experience in higher education and serving in key leadership positions within private, public, and for-profit institutions. Dr. Betts teaches in the Mind, Brain & Learning certificate program, the Master’s program in Higher Education Leadership, the Master’s program in Creativity & Innovation, and the Doctoral program in Educational Leadership & Administration. She is also the founding Director of the Education, Learning and Brain Sciences (E-LaBS) Research Collaborative. Additionally, she serves as an Advisory Board Member for the Freddie Reisman Center for Translational Research in Creativity & Motivation. Dr. Betts’ expertise is in online and blended education, curriculum and instructional design, and evaluation. Her research focus is on Mind, Brain, and Education Science, creativity, technology-enhanced learning, Online Human Touch, and professional development. Dr. Betts is a Fulbright Specialist, Middle States Commission on Higher Education peer evaluator, and an instructor with the Online Learning Consortium certificate programs. Dr. Betts is a grant reviewer for the Hong Kong Grants Council and has been a reviewer for 14 journals and publishing companies. Dr. Betts has also been a keynote and invited speaker at conferences and government-supported events in Sweden, South Korea, South Africa, Canada, and across the United States.
Michelle D. Miller is Director of the First Year Learning Initiative, Professor of Psychological Sciences, and President's Distinguished Teaching Fellow at Northern Arizona University. Dr. Miller's academic background is in cognitive psychology; her research interests include memory, attention, and student success in the early college career. She co-created the First Year Learning Initiative at Northern Arizona University and is active in course redesign, serving as a Redesign Scholar for the National Center for Academic Transformation. She is the author of Minds Online: Teaching Effectively with Technology (Harvard University Press, 2014), and has written about evidence-based pedagogy in scholarly as well as general-interest publications including College Teaching, Change: The Magazine of Higher Learning, and The Conversation. Dr. Miller's current work focuses on using psychological principles to help instructors create more effective and engaging learning experiences, and to help students become more effective learners.
Brian Delaney is a doctoral student in Educational Leadership and Learning Technologies and a Research Assistant in Drexel University’s School of Education. He earned a bachelor’s degree in Journalism from Ithaca College in 2004, and a Master’s degree in Higher Education Administration with a concentration in e-Learning Technologies and Instructional Design from Drexel in 2016. He spent five years as an adjunct lecturer at the Ithaca College Park School of Communications, teaching journalism courses, and was an award-winning journalist in newspapers and radio over a career of 16 years. His research foci include: journalism and mass communication education, online and blended learning, educational technologies, experiential learning and e-learning, instructional design, and Mind Brain Education sciences. In February 2018, he was selected Co-Editor of the Emerging Voices in Education Journal for a two-year term. He enjoys spending time with his wife, Stefanie, and their two children, Eamonn and Brynn.

Extended Abstract

Prior research has indicated a relationship between an instructor’s beliefs and her/his instructional practices in general (Knapp, 2013, Stein & Wang, 1988; Youyan, Tan, Liau, Lau, & Chua, 2013). Therefore, it is importance to understand the pedagogical beliefs of higher education instructors, instructional designers, and professional development administrators and their awareness of evidence-based practices that build upon the literature and advancements in the learning sciences.

This interactive session examines advancements in technology and neuroscience that are expanding what we know about the human brain. Furthermore, this session explores research from MBE science that provides important insight about the human learning process which is critical to course design, teaching, and learning. 

Data and findings from an OLC international study, which included 45 countries, will highlight neuromyths found within higher education that are also prevalent in K-12 education. Additionally, data and findings will highlight  awareness of evidence-based research from the neurosciences, cognitive sciences, and learning sciences. Panelists will discuss predictors of neuromyths and discuss the high level of interest in learning more about the brain across instructors, instructional designers, and professional development administrators. MBE strategies and resources will be shared that can be applied across disciplines and educational formats to support student engagement and transfer of learning across real-world contexts.