A Celebration of the Ordinary: The Key Role of the Arts In Educating a Brain

Artifacts from early human societies suggest that the arts were always important. If the arts hadn’t been important, people wouldn’t have expended the considerable time and energy it took to decorate clothing and tools, and to make non-functional artistic objects (such as necklaces)—given the primitive tools and materials available to them. The arts have endured,…

A Conversation With Marian Diamond

The photographs and worn books that adorn Dr. Marian Diamond’s office are a sharp contrast to the spare concrete corridors of the Valley Life Sciences Building at the University of California at Berkeley. And Dr. Diamond herself, an elegant woman with silver hair and a warm smile, is a pleasant contrast to the competitive and…

A Conversation With Bruce McEwen

In the life cycle of an academic research scientist, developmental maturation usually consists of achieving a secure tenured position, establishing a productive lab, and becoming a respected member of the scientific community. Once this is achieved, most academic researchers busy themselves with worrying about their next grant application or find themselves drawn into the inevitable…

Will the Real Brain-Based Learning Please Stand Up?

We’ve been hearing plenty about brain-based learning, but much of what we hear can be confusing. Not only are there arguments about how well brain-based learning works, there are arguments about whether such a thing such as brain-based learning exists at all. Like so much other recent brain-related news, discussions about brain-based learning have been…

Use Your Brain or Lose It: A Conversation with Dr. John Ratey

Dr. John Ratey’s most recent book, A User’s Guide to the Brain, is one of the most accessible books available on recent brain research, what it means, and how to best make use of it. Ratey is professor of psychiatry at Harvard Medical School and the co-author of a number of books, including Shadow Syndromes,…