Developing Minds in the Digital Age

Towards a Science of Learning for 21st Century Education

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This book highlights new scientific research about how people learn, including interdisciplinary perspectives from neuroscience, the social, cognitive and behavioural sciences, education, computer and information sciences, artificial intelligence/machine learning, and engineering. These new developments offer fascinating new perspectives, based on technological advances, which enable a re-examination of longstanding problems in learning, raise new questions, and offer new approaches to the study of learning. This report seeks to catalyse discussions on the implications of these research findings for education practice and policy, and in turn, on how knowledge and experience from real-world education practice and policy could challenge and inform research agendas and theory building.



The role of anxiety and motivation in students’ maths and science achievement

Ensuring that all students can perform up to their potential in school is a central goal in education. As such, improving students’ ability and skill is often the main focus of educational interventions. However, psychological factors such as anxiety and motivation are also important for student learning and success. Those students with high levels of anxiety and low levels of motivation tend perform below their capabilities – even when they have high levels of skill and ability. We review recent work showing the importance of parents and teachers in shaping students’ attitudes, interest and persistence in maths and science. We also highlight classroom and home interventions shown to be effective in combating high levels of student anxiety and low levels of student motivation and reducing the harmful learning consequences of negative affect.


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