Abstract In the present article, we provide a critical overview of the emerging field of ‘neuroeducation’ also frequently referred to as ‘mind, brain and education’ or ‘educational neuroscience’. We describe the growing energy behind linking education and neuroscience in an effort to improve learning and instruction. We explore reasons behind such drives for interdisciplinary research. Reviewing some of the key advances in neuroscientific studies that have come to bear on neuroeducation, we discuss recent evidence on the brain circuits underlying reading, (...) mathematical abilities as well as the potential to use neuroscience to design training programs of neurocognitive functions, such as working memory, that are expected to have effects on overall brain function. Throughout this review we describe how such research can enrich our understanding of the acquisition of academic skills. Furthermore, we discuss the potential for modern brain imaging methods to serve as diagnostic tools as well as measures of the effects of educational interventions. Throughout this discussion, we draw attention to limitations of the available evidence and propose future avenues for research. We also discuss the challenges that face this growing discipline. Specifically, we draw attention to unrealistic expectations for the immediate impact of neuroscience on education, methodological difficulties, and lack of interdisciplinary training, which results in poor communication between educators and neuroscientists. We point out that there should be bi-directional and reciprocal interactions between both disciplines of neuroscience and education, in which research originating from each of these traditions is considered to be compelling in its own right. While there are many obstacles that lie in the way of a productive field of neuroeducation, we contend that there is much reason to be optimistic and that the groundwork has been laid to advance this field in earnest. Content Type Journal Article Category Original Paper Pages 1-13 DOI 10.1007/s12152-011-9119-3 Authors Daniel Ansari, Numerical Cognition Laboratory, Department of Psychology, The University of Western Ontario, Westminster Hall, London, ON N6A 3K7, Canada Bert De Smedt, Parenting and Special Education Research Group, Katholieke Universiteit Leuven, Leuven, Belgium Roland H. Grabner, Institute for Behavioral Sciences, Swiss Federal Institute of Technology (ETH) Zurich, Zurich, Switzerland Journal Neuroethics Online ISSN 1874-5504 Print ISSN 1874-5490. (shrink)
In recent years there have been growing calls for forging greater connections between education and cognitive neuroscience. As a consequence great hopes for the application of empirical research on the human brain to educational problems have been raised. In this article we contend that the expectation that results from cognitive neuroscience research will have a direct and immediate impact on educational practice are shortsighted and unrealistic. Instead, we argue that an infrastructure needs to be created, principally through interdisciplinary training, funding (...) and research programs that allow for bidirectional collaborations between cognitive neuroscientists, educators and educational researchers to grow. We outline several pathways for scaffolding such a basis for the emerging field of ‘Mind, Brain and Education’ to flourish as well as the obstacles that are likely to be encountered along the path. (shrink)
Experience with a group of mechanical engineering seniors at the University of Colorado led to an informal experiment with engineering students in India. An attempt was made to qualitatively gauge the students’ ability to appreciate a worldview different from the standard engineering worldview—that of a mechanical universe. Qualitative differences between organic and mechanical systems were used as a point of discussion. Both groups were found to exhibit distinct thought and behavior patterns which provide important clues for sensitizing engineers to environmental (...) issues in future educational initiatives. Cross-cultural and global dimensions of these initiatives are discussed. (shrink)
A recent initiative at Muffakham Jah College of Engineering and Technology, Hyderabad, India, has resulted in setting up a program called Centre for Environment Studies and Socioresponsive Engineering which seeks to involve undergraduate students in studying and solving environmental problems in and around the city of Hyderabad, India. Two pilot projects have been undertaken — one focusing on design and construction of an eco-friendly house, The Natural House, and another directed at improving environmental and general living conditions in a slum (...) area. The paper describes our attempts and experience of motivating our students to take interest in such projects. In an interesting development we invited a member of a student-faculty team at Massachusetts Institute of Technology (M.I.T.) that is doing a project in Nepal on safe drinking water. We report in our paper how the presentation by the guest from M.I.T. served as a catalyst for generating interest among civil and mechanical engineering students in our own projects. The paper includes contributions from one of our students and the M.I.T. staff member, reporting on their experiences related to the slum development project. (shrink)
This paper examines the concept of liberty at the heart of Sarah Chapone’s 1735 work, The Hardships of the English Laws in Relation to Wives. In this work, Chapone (1699-1764) advocates an ideal of freedom from domination that closely resembles the republican ideal in seventeenth and eighteenth- century England. This is the idea that an agent is free provided that no-one else has the power to dispose of that agent’s property—her “life, liberty, and limb” and her material possessions—according to (...) his arbitrary will and pleasure, without being accountable to the law. This paper shows how Chapone uses this ideal to ground her arguments against those laws that put married women in a worse condition than slavery, and to call for the establishment of reasonable and just safeguards for a woman’s personal property and property in her children. More than this, it is argued, in this text Chapone articulates a feminist ideal that is both negative freedom from domination and positive freedom to be one’s own master or arbiter. Her work thus occupies a unique—and hitherto unrecognized—place in the history of feminist philosophy. (shrink)
Sarah Grand was one of the most prominent New Women of the 1890s and a notable social purity feminist and suffragist. This collection offers important insights into the full range of her journalistic output and lesser-known fictional writings. It also makes available biographical and autobiographical material, and previously unpublished manuscript sources. The first volume reproduces Grand's articles and the contemporary critical reception of her work. The letters in volume two, written mostly in the 1920s and 1930s, shed light on (...) Grand's genesis as a writer and her interaction with 1890s artistic and feminist circles. The third and fourth volumes contain a selection of short stories from three collections published at and after the turn of the century. These comment on some of the explosive issues of that time: feminism, decadence, eugenics, class, race and war. They also reflect Grand's exploration of the interplay between gender and genre. (shrink)
There are too many people on the planet. This isn’t a popular thing to say, but it’s becoming more and more obvious that it’s true, and that we need to do something to address it. Even in our radically unjust world, where billions of people do not have adequate access to food, water, energy, and other resources, we’re still living unsustainably—overcharging our ecological credit card and torching the climate. But discussing the link between these environmental problems and the population is (...) uncomfortable, because many people believe that procreation is an essentially private act that is morally and politically off-limits. In her new book, One Child, Sarah Conly argues that this belief is false: If... (shrink)
This review looks at Sarah Hoagland's Lesbian Ethics from the position of a lesbian who is also a cultural participant in a colonized heterosexualist culture within the powerful context of its colonizing heterosexualist culture . From this position separation from heterosexualism acquires great complexity since the position described is that of a plural self. In Lesbian Ethics lesbian community is the community of separation where demoralization is avoided by auto-koenonous selves. Because heterosexualism is not a cross-cultural or international system (...) but a series of systems some of which dominate over others and threaten their extinction , lesbian pluralism cannot be achieved through the inclusion of lesbians of different cultures, classes and situations in a separating group. Neither the need for nor the value of separation from heterosexualism are undermined by the increased complexity that this position adds to the analysis. (shrink)
Following the tradition of feminist philosophers and scholars of science from the 1980s onward such as Evelyn Fox-Keller, Helen Longino, Anne Fausto-Sterling, and others who revealed how popular notions of masculinity and femininity infiltrated and shaped the content of scientific knowledge, Sarah S. Richardson's book Sex Itself: The Search for Male and Female in the Human Genome deserves a place on the shelf with this canonical literature. It addresses one of the most celebrated symbols of biological sex binary: the (...) X and Y chromosomes. The X and Y chromosomes, we learn, were not given the role of "sex chromosomes" upon their discovery in 1890 and 1905, respectively. Their transformation into the ultimate... (shrink)
When a mother deliberately harms her child, it is tempting to assume that she must be either insane or lacking the "natural" love of a mother for her children. We want to believe that such mothers have almost nothing in common with "good" mothers. Drawing extensively on empirical research, Sarah LaChance Adams' Mad Mothers, Bad Mothers, and What A "Good" Mother Would Do shows that maternal ambivalence, simultaneous desires to nurture and violently reject one's children, is both common and (...) reasonable, the result of genuine conflicts between mothers' interests and those of their children. Both appropriate support and deliberative agency are necessary to avoid maternal ambivalence... (shrink)
Sarah Conly's One Child is a substantive treatment of the extent to which procreative freedom is curtailed by rising global population and the environmental problems to which it contributes. This review provides an overview of the book's content and closes with a few critical remarks. The book is highly recommended for those interested in the intersection between environmental ethics and the ethics of procreation.
In his 1916 preface to Democracy and Education, John Dewey comments that the main goal of his book was “to detect and state the ideas implied in a democratic society and to apply these ideas to the problems and enterprise of education. The discussion includes an indication of the constructive aims and methods of public education as seen from this point of view.”1 More than 100 years later, Sarah M. Stitzlein confirms Dewey’s ideas and expands his scholarship to defend (...) the political legitimacy of public education in the United States. She argues that public schools should enable children to become good citizens who engage in the pursuit of individual happiness, while fighting for social justice. Stitzlein contends... (shrink)
Sarah Orne Jewett, who lived from 1849 to 1909, witnessed a revolution in medicine that led to the formation of the medical profession as it is recognised today. By comparing two of the author’s works, one written at the outset of her career and the other written much later, this paper discusses how Jewett’s views about women’s role in medicine changed and developed. In the first novel, A Country Doctor, a young Jewett celebrates the new-found power of scientific medicine (...) in the period directly after germ theory was widely adopted. The author depicts a female physician as a pioneer bravely breaking into a male-dominated field. Later, in The Country of the Pointed Firs, Jewett’s depiction of a female medical practitioner is much more nuanced— the matured writer’s views are accompanied by discrete but deep-seated criticisms of medical ideology as she saw it developing. The comparison of these novels gives us insight into Jewett’s world, and leaves questions for readers today. Most importantly, how should women today approach traditional medicine given the discipline’s deeply misogynist roots? Jewett’s unique perspectives serve as a catalyst for this discussion. (shrink)
Most of our histories of philosophy, in our books and especially in our courses, are what William James called “appreciative chronicle[s] of human master-strokes”. They resemble tours of grand and isolated monuments. Sarah Hutton’s magnificent British Philosophy in the Seventeenth Century is a different kind of history, in which masterpieces are placed in conversation with books that are now neglected or all but forgotten. By means of this “conversation model,” Hutton provides what she justly terms “a ‘thick description’ of (...) seventeenth-century culture, setting marginal and ‘major’ thinkers within [an]… integrated account of... (shrink)
Masterpieces by Sarah Daniels has been described as a voice in the debate on pornography, expressing the anti-pornography position as opposed to the liberal feminist stance in this debate. Despite its ideological clarity reported by many reviewers and critics, the play has been commented upon as deficient or inadequate because of evoking conflicting interpretations and ambiguity. The paper argues that these deficiencies stem from the play’s concern with the distribution of agency and passivity along gender lines as well as (...) the influence of generic and essentialist notions of genders on the perception of social and individual power relations particularly in the domain of eroticism and sexuality. One of the key issues of the play is the question to what extent and in what ways human perception is conditioned by the place of the subject in relation to the agency/passivity dichotomy and his or her viewing/reading position in relation to erotic and pornographic material. (shrink)
: This article examines Sarah Kofman's interpretation of Nietzsche in light of the claim that interpretation was for her both an articulation of her identity and a mode of deconstructing the very notion of identity. Faulkner argues that Kofman's work on Nietzsche can be understood as autobiographical, in that it served to mediate a relation to her self. Faulkner examines this relation with reference to Klein's model of the child's connection to its mother. By examining Kofman's later writings on (...) Nietzsche alongside her autobiography, this article contends that Kofman's defense of anti-Semitism in Nietzsche serves to fend off her own ambivalence about being Jewish. (shrink)
What is philosophy? What is metaphor? Could thinking take place metaphorically? If one follows the mainstream Western definition of philosophy, the answer to the latter question would certainly be negative. Metaphors are perceived as primitive, pre-analytical, and imprecise—thus pre-philosophical! Drawing on multiple cross-cultural resources, Metaphor and Metaphilosophy: Philosophy as Combat, Play, and Aesthetic Experience by Sarah A. Mattice insightfully challenges this widespread assumption in the current...
Sarah Hoagland suggests that through developing the method of "attending" and the ethics of "autokoenony," individual integrity and agency will result. While acknowledging the utility of these ideals for many lesbians and wimmin, I argue that Hoagland's thesis is, regrettably, not universally applicable.
In her review of my book How we remember: Brain mechanisms of episodic memory, Sarah Robins highlights my example of the problem of interference between memories accessed by content-addressable memory. However, she points out the difficulty of solving this problem with index-addressable representations such as time cells or arc length cells. Namely, the index-addressable memory requires knowing the unique index in advance in order to perform effective retrieval. This is a difficult problem, but should be solvable by forming bi-directional (...) associations between an index-addressable sequence of time cells and an array of content-addressable features in the environment. (shrink)
We have been teaching gender issues and feminist theory for many years, and we know that there is certainly a diversity of views among women, and men, about what counts as feminist or as good for women. Some may see a competent woman running for V.P as inevitably a step forward for women's equality. But consider this.
This article examines Sarah Kofman's interpretation of Nietzsche in light of the claim that interpretation was for her both an articulation of her identity and a mode of deconstructing the very notion of identity. Faulkner argues that Kofman's work on Nietzsche can be understood as autobiographical, in that it served to mediate a relation to her self. Faulkner examines this relation with reference to Klein's model of the child's connection to its mother. By examining Kofman's later writings on Nietzsche (...) alongside her autobiography, this article contends that Kofman's defense of anti-Semitism in Nietzsche serves to fend off her own ambivalence about being Jewish. (shrink)
SummarySince first appearance, reviews and accounts of The Fresh-Water Fishes of Great Britain have been surprisingly few. All agree that this rare work is remarkable for its illustrations. Its importance as a whole in the history of ichthyology, however, is largely unknown, or ignored. This article therefore constitutes the first study of the textual and contextual significance of The Fresh-Water Fishes of Great Britain. By examining in chronological order where, and by whom, the work was first reviewed and referenced until (...) the 1860s, the extraordinary contributions that its author, Sarah Bowdich, made to ichthyology at the forefront of the field in the late 1820s can better be appreciated. Indeed, this multiple evidence demonstrates Sarah Bowdich's merits as an ichthyologist of the first order, and as the first woman ichthyologist. But establishing the significance of The Fresh-Water Fishes of Great Britain for the history of ichthyology then raises a further question. Why has it and its author been so ignored or forgotten? By returning for answers to the fields of ichthyology already considered, the article proposes that Sarah Bowdich's different angles on fish offer lines of investigation that are still important for the field today. (shrink)
The small, the tiny, and the infinitesimal have been the object of both fascination and vilification for millenia. One of the most vitriolic reviews in mathematics was that written by Errett Bishop about Keisler’s book Elementary Calculus: an Infinitesimal Approach. In this skit we investigate both the argument itself, and some of its roots in Bishop George Berkeley’s criticism of Leibnizian and Newtonian Calculus. We also explore some of the consequences to students for whom the infinitesimal approach is congenial. The (...) casual mathematical reader may be satisfied to read the text of the five act play, whereas the others may wish to delve into the 130 footnotes, some of which contain elucidation of the mathematics or comments on the history. (shrink)