Learning and testing

Cognitive Daily

Category archives for Learning and testing

One of our readers emailed us asking if there has ever been research on whether kids’ understanding of numbers — especially large numbers — differs from adults. Greta did a little poking around and found a fascinating study on second- and fourth-graders. In the U.S. (and I suspect around the world), kids this age are…

Yesterday we discussed several experiments offering converging evidence that exposure to the color red, even for brief periods before taking a test, can result in lower achievement. It’s startling research, but as my daughter suggested at breakfast this morning, maybe people are just intimidated by the color red because that’s the color that’s always used…

One of the things I was taught in English graduate school was never to grade papers using red ink. Students don’t respond well to the color red, I was told — it’s intimidating. I always thought this was a little far-fetched, and my instructors couldn’t offer a peer-reviewed journal article that definitively answered the question…

Yesterday, we discussed sex differences at the highest levels of achievement and found that there are some significant differences between males and females. But despite these observations, it’s still unclear why the disparity exists, and what can or should be done about it. Sex differences in brain structure One possibility is that the physical structure…

In yesterday’s post, we discussed sex differences in achievement and ability. Few were identified. For the most part, however, this research discussed average differences. The problem with only discussing averages is that people engaged in science and math careers are far from “average” when it comes to math and science ability. Math and science professors…

In 1999, Melissa Kamins and Carol Dweck made a striking discovery about the best way to praise children. When you are helping a child learn to read, saying “you are a smart girl” as opposed to “you did a good job reading” results in very different behavior when she has trouble reading in the future.…

A recent report in Nature Neuroscience has gotten a lot of press. The headlines proclaim that “left-wing” brains are different from “right wing” brains. Are our brains literally hard-wired to be conservative or liberal? The article in the L.A. Times sure seems to suggest it: Sulloway said the results could explain why President Bush demonstrated…

When you look at a scene: a building, a park, a mountain, your visual system processes the information differently from when you look at a single object: a face, a pen, or a coffee mug. For example, this first image is from our trip to Prague this past summer: When you look at this picture,…

Attentional Set: Set in stone?

This is a guest post by Daniel Griffin, one of Greta’s top student writers from Spring of 2007. Does anything seem stick out about this sentence? I’m sure that if I told you to keep looking for yellow highlighted words, you would not have much trouble finding them in these first few sentences. You could…

A continuation of our “greatest hits” from past Cognitive Daily postings: [originally posted on December 14, 2005] IQ has been the subject of hundreds, if not thousands of research studies. Scholars have studied the link between IQ and race, gender, socioeconomic status, even music. Discussions about the relationship between IQ and race and the heritability…