APS has long supported education research, as cognitive development, child behavior, and neuroscience are all of great importance to APS members. There has been a flurry of activity in this field in recent years, and psychologists have been heavily involved. Both NIH and NSF have been right in the middle of this activity, which is gaining wide support from all three branches of the federal government.
The National Center for Education Research, Institute of Education Sciences
The National Center for Education Research (NCER) supports rigorous research that addresses the nation’s most pressing education needs, from early childhood to adult education. The Cognition and Student Learning Program is especially relevant for psychological scientists. Take a look at a recent column by IES Director John Easton in the Observer.
Research on Learning Styles
A major new report published in late 2009 in Psychological Science in the Public Interest, authored by Hal Pashler, Mark McDaniel, Doug Rohrer, and Robert Bjork, reviews the existing literature on learning styles and finds that although numerous studies have purported to show the existence of different kinds of learners (such as “auditory learners” and “visual learners”), those studies have not used the type of randomized research designs that would make their findings credible. Also see the media coverage on this report.
Education Research: A New Approach by the Federal Government The Office of Educational Research and Improvement is a branch of the U.S. Department of Education, which provides national leadership for educational research and statistics. OERI’s mission is to promote excellence in education by conducting research and demonstration projects funded through grants to help improve education.
Science of Learning Centers at NSF
How people think, learn and remember is a core area of interest at the National Science Foundation. The NSF currently supports six Science of Learning centers.
Child Development and Behavior at NICHD
The Child Development and Behavior branch at the National Institute on Child Health and Human Development recently established a new program that will examine child cognition and learning in mathematics and science.