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Journal Article

Neuroscience research in the classroom: Portable brain technologies in education research


Poeppel,  David
Department of Neuroscience, Max Planck Institute for Empirical Aesthetics, Max Planck Society;
New York University;

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Davidesco, I., Matuk, C., Bevilacqua, D., Poeppel, D., & Dikker, S. (2021). Neuroscience research in the classroom: Portable brain technologies in education research. Educational Researcher, 50(9), 649 -656. doi:10.3102/0013189X211031563.

Cite as: https://hdl.handle.net/21.11116/0000-0009-0097-C
Cognitive neuroscience research is typically conducted in controlled laboratory environments and therefore its contribution to our understanding of learning in real-world environments is limited. In recent years, however, portable and wearable brain devices have become more readily available for classroom-based research. Complementing existing education research methods, these emerging technologies could provide information about learning processes that might not be reflected in classroom observations or learners’ self-reports. This essay critically evaluates the value added by portable brain technologies in education research and outlines a proposed research agenda, centered around questions related to student engagement, cognitive load, and self-regulation. We also address ethical concerns regarding student privacy and the potential misuse of students’ brain data.