The npj Science of Learning Community presents research focussed on the mind, brain and education space. In May, authors Joshua Cetron and David Kraemer discussed why learned concepts can shape the brain’s response to objects in the world, and teachers James Tucker and Rob McEntarrfer consider the best approach to overcoming the challenges posed by online learning.

To determine whether educational experience influences an individual’s perception of the physical world or not, a research team compared the neural activity of novice and advanced engineering students while they observed photographs of built structures. Joshua Cetron and David Kraemer reflected on the results of their study in Learning physics changes how students see the world.

As our society copes with the ‘new normal’ generated by COVID-19, teachers have the daunting task of keeping students’ attention focused in virtual classrooms, despite the distractions of home. James Tucker, a school principal from Costa Rica, described some of the best methods teachers can adopt to benefit their students in Virtual challenges of distance learning.

Inspiring students to think about the information taught in class is integral to learning and memory. Rob McEntarrfer, a teacher from the US, demonstrated how the application of effective online teaching tools can enhance student thinking and improve learning in Digital or analog, remote or in-person: thinking matters.

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