Applying the Science of Learning

Applying the Science of Learning How is that we know so much about the way people think, learn and remember, but for the most part don’t use that knowledge in the classroom?

This was the underlying theme when a select group of high-powered researchers and academics met at a conference on “Applying the Science of Learning” (ASL) at the Kellogg West conference facility outside of Los Angeles earlier this Spring. Co-chairs Diane Halpern and Milton D. Hakel led the group through a series of discussions to examine gaps in research related to learning, barriers to change in educational institutions and practices, and strategies for implementing new approaches to education based on scientific evidence about the cognitive, individual, social and environmental factors that influence learning.

The ASL conference, which was supported by the Spencer Foundation, the Marshall Reynolds Trust Fund, APS and California State University, San Bernardino, is an outgrowth of the 1998 Summit of Psychological Science Societies, where education was identified as a priority.

Among the potential initiatives that will be pursued by conferees are a research agenda in the science of learning, and the development of demonstration projects of educational practices based on scientific principles of learning.

A list of participants appears below. Watch for details on the Science of Learning initiative and related activities in future issues of the Observer.

For additional information you can visit the ASL web site at

Steering Committee
Doug Bernstein
Robert Bjork
Earl Hunt
Alan Kraut
Sheldon Zedeck

Conference Participants
Phil Ackerman
Franca Agnoli
Elizabeth Bjork
John Bransford
Sarah Brookhart
Merry Bullock
Alberto Canas
Rodney Cocking
Don Dansereau
Frank Dempster
Kevin Dunbar
Howard Everson
Alan Feldman
Arthur Graesser
Eric Hamilton
Douglass Herrman
Robert Hoffman
Keith Holyoak
Dan Ilgen
Alan Kraut
Alan Lesgold
Richard Mayer
Jose Mestre
Nora Newcombe
John Newman
Vimla Patel
Joan Prival
Sharon Riedel
Robert Suzuki
Kenneth Whang
Ralph Wolff

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