The Science of Learning: Metacognition in Education

Not only is it difficult to measure and develop metacognitive skills, but the current state of education systematically stifles metacognitive development. One of the hallmarks of metacognitive development is divergent thinking. Divergent thinking requires an individual to think of different ways that a solution can be reached. It requires cognitive flexibility, as well as critical… Read More

The Science of Learning: Metacognition in Life

As with most of the higher order thinking skills, metacognition plays a wider role in life than just academic work. However, metacognition has, by far, the widest reaching effects in people’s lives as the following list demonstrates. This is likely the reason why educators have focussed and tried to develop metacognition in children. Unfortunately, because… Read More

The Science of Learning: Metacognition

Metacognition is a set of skills that allow us to control and direct our cognitive abilities. Metacognition? Cognition first. I was in my first cognition class as a 30-year-old adult before I had any idea what cognition is. I took the class because cognitive psychology was one of the areas I was required to study… Read More

The Science of Learning: Alternatives to Conformity

Is there an alternative to conformity in a system of mass education? This is a big question. Certainly not under the current mindset. Before something can be done about conformity, it needs to be recognized as a problem. First, we have to believe that there is a solution and that we can contribute to finding… Read More

The Science of Learning: The Immense Cost of Conformity

This article is the most difficult Science of Learning article that I will write. Considering the cost of conformity at an individual and societal level. The cost of conformity at a societal level is high, but the cost borne by an individual is even higher. I informally surveyed some clinical psychologists to gauge their opinions… Read More

The Science of Learning: Conformity in the Classroom

How has conformity become the norm in education, and what methods are used to foster absolute conformity? Where do we start? As I have mentioned previously, it is generally well accepted that education today owes its roots, at least in part, to Prussian military developments in the C17/C18 and the efficiency gains developed in manufacturing… Read More

The Science of Learning: The Motivation of an Audience

Today I’m going to jump back and post another article about motivation. This article is about writing for an audience and how that motivates students. An audience has always been a part of any writing. In the past, an audience was an abstract entity or a “work of fiction” (Ong, 1975, p. 9) that was… Read More

The Science of Learning: Mindset

Carol Dweck is the principle figure behind mindset theory and in my opinion is one of the giants in the science of learning. To understand where Dweck is coming from, we need to go back decades. In the early 1980’s Dweck started looking into the perplexing question of why females consistently score lower than males… Read More

The Science of Learning: Intrinsic Motivation Basics

As promised, my second piece on motivation. When I was growing up, I was a Yankees baseball fan. They were winning, my third-grade teacher read us a story about Mickey Mantle, and my dad loved the Dodgers – so I picked the Yankees. I listened to an interview on the radio with Reggie Jackson one… Read More

Science of Learning: Thinking & Understanding

In addition to teaching content, the primary, avowed purpose of higher education is to teach people how to think, and take information and turn it into knowledge. The difference between information and knowledge is understanding. Knowing that 2X2=4 is nothing more than information if you really don’t understand that 2X2 means two groups of two… Read More