Translating research into classroom practice: Cognitive science and beyond

Decorative image of glasses on an open notebook

Pedro De Bruyckere, Arteveldehogeschool University of Applied Sciences, Belgium; Utrecht University, Netherlands Paul A Kirschner, Emeritus Professor, Open University of the Netherlands, Netherlands; Thomas More University of Applied Sciences, Belgium; kirschner-ED Welcome to this issue of Impact, with the theme of ‘Translating research into classroom practice: Cognitive science and beyond’. The print version contains a […]

Neuromyths about Special Educational Needs: What should teachers know

Jo Van Herwegen, Associate Professor, Psychology and Human Development, Faculty of Education and Society, UCL, UK  Michael Thomas, Director, Centre for Educational Neuroscience, Birkbeck, University of London, UK  Chloe Marshall, Professor, Psychology and Human Development, Faculty of Education and Society, UCL, UK Rebecca Gordon, Associate Professor, Psychology and Human Development, Faculty of Education and Society, […]

Consolidating learning in Key Stage 5 chemistry

Helen Skelton, Head of Science, Beaumont School, UK Knowledge is required to think and therefore to learn. Learning has been defined as ‘relatively permanent changes in comprehension, understanding, and skills of the types that will support long-term retention and transfer’ (Soderstrom and Bjork, 2015, p. 176). The long-term retention of learning is a particular challenge […]

Applying cognitive science principles to primary science

Dr Sarah Earle and Dr Kendra McMahon, School of Education, Bath Spa University, UK Introduction Cognitive science provides insights into learning that can inform practice in education, but the plethora of publications and, in some cases, the lab-based nature of studies that are remote from classroom realities make it difficult for practitioners to use this […]

Using cognitive science principles to design a knowledge-rich primary science curriculum

Rebecca Wardell, Primary Trust Assistant Principal, Dixons Academies Trust and Dixons Music Primary, UK In 2017, a major report funded by the EEF (Nunes et al., 2017) found strong evidence of a link between socio-economic status and science attainment. This science attainment gap becomes apparent at Key Stage 1 and gets wider throughout the rest […]

Translating aspects of cognitive load theory into practice: nuanced results from the worked example effect in South African mathematics classrooms

Ashley Abbott, PhD Student and lifelong Mathematics Teacher, University of Oxford, UK Introduction Cognitive load theory (CLT) needs little introduction for many teachers and schools, with a myriad of books being published especially for teachers on the subject (e.g. Garnett, 2020). However, the theory is not well integrated into the South African context, and there […]

From theory to practicals – what does cognitive science suggest for teaching practical science?

Adam Stubbs, Teacher of Science and Maths, Evidence Leader in Education, Park View School, UK With the move to integrate cognitive science research into classrooms, there has been a focus on tangible aspects of learning such as knowledge. Discussions surrounding retention, retrieval and cognitive load often focus on knowledge-based components of learning, occasionally ignoring the […]

Teachers’ understanding of neuromyths: A role for educational neuroscience in teacher training.

Yasin Arslan, PhD Candidate, Department of Psychology and Human Development, University College London  Rebecca Gordon, Associate Professor of Cognitive Psychology, Department of Psychology and Human Development, University College London  Andy Tolmie, Professor of Developmental Psychology, Department of Psychology and Human Development, University College London  Introduction Teachers in the UK must complete a degree and an […]

Effective strategies to support novice and expert learners in MFL: The power of modelling

Silvia Bastow, Subject Leader for MFL, Ercall Wood Academy, UK Every academic year, many language teachers are faced with a similar scenario: in September, they take on a new Year 10 GCSE class, they spend months progressively teaching a range of vocabulary and grammatical concepts in context, which they regularly retrieve, space and interleave – […]

Strategies for consolidating learning in a primary school setting

Richard Jones, Deputy Headteacher, Zaytouna Primary School, UK Since the introduction of the National Curriculum in 2014 and the ever-growing emphasis on children ‘knowing more (including knowing how to do more) and remembering more’ (Ofsted, 2019), ensuring that children consolidate their learning and do not simply ‘perform’ has become a particular priority within my practice. […]

Overcoming barriers to introducing metacognitive strategies to teaching professionals

Morgan Chatten, Cross-Trust Director of English – Teaching, Learning and Curriculum, Turner Trust, UK The purpose of this article is to clarify what is meant by metacognition and to dispel myths and misunderstanding regarding its origin and use in contemporary education.  The article aims to support leaders of teaching and learning to consider how they […]

Does question difficulty impact the effect of retrieval practice/testing effect?

Lewis Adams, Assistant Headteacher, UK  Increasingly, education is becoming about understanding and applying cognitive science in the classroom. The new Early Career Framework (ECF) actively seeks to train our new teachers to teach their students to ‘retrieve information from memory’ (DfE, 2019, p. 11), and Ofsted have now defined learning as ‘an alteration in long-term […]

Dual coding theory in the Classroom: An exploration of teacher’s perspectives across two English primary schools

William Payne, Master of Education Student, University of Derby, UK Paivio (1971) identifies dual coding theory (DCT) as the use of visual stimuli alongside language-based input, utilising the brain’s cognitive capabilities to support memory and information processing. However, Clark and Paivio (1991) apply the theory specifically to the context of education and identify its applications […]

The science of learning: Is it time to bring students into the conversation?

Rachael Thornton, Head of Psychology and Head of Year 12, Dulwich College, Shanghai Pudong, China The notion of teaching students effective study habits is not a new phenomenon, with research indicating that student study skills and motivation are just as strong a predictor of student academic performance when compared with traditional measures, such as prior […]

Using peer teaching to improve effective learning strategies in Year 7 students

Claire Badger, Edward Hackett and Caitlin Whitby, The Godolphin and Latymer School, UK Discussions with students around effective learning have traditionally been left until they are given dedicated ‘study skills’ sessions as they approach high-stakes examinations. In a recent article, Firth (2022) argued that the foundations for effective learning need to be in place much […]

Today I’ve been a Try-o-saur’: Embedding self-regulation in Early Years classrooms

Sayeh Mariner, SLE and EYFS Lead, Essa Primary Academy, UK Matt Shurlock, Teacher, Brookburn Primary School, UK This reflective article considers the steps taken to apply research recommendations within Early Years classrooms to encourage pupils to be independent and competent learners. The focus will be on a dinosaur-inspired, talk-based classroom activity designed to practically apply […]

The use of worked examples for novice learners in the English classroom

Nicole Still, Curriculum Leader for English, Thinking Schools Academy Trust, UK When undertaking the research-based enquiry project in the final phase of my journey to secure Chartered Teacher Status, I identified Year 10 students at the beginning of their English literature GCSE as suitable novice learners on whom to explore the possible impacts of models. […]