“Asking someone to make a prediction represents a very simple route to raising curiosity and hence represents a very simple route to stimulating the brains of our students and preparing them for their learning.”

LangCan small changes in strategy result in significant improvements?  This new book for college instructors by James M. Lang argues convincingly that they can. While some of the techniques are not new – my mother asked her students to make predictions 40 years ago – all the strategies are supported by the most recent research by cognitive psychologists, neuroscientists, and biologists.  For example, he notes that curiosity is an emotion that has been recently demonstrated to boost memory when it is heightened prior to exposure to new material. I’m convinced that this book will spark many changes in my approach next fall.

James M. Lang, Small Teaching: Everyday Lessons from the Science of Learning (San Francisco: Jossey-Bass, A Wiley Brand, 2016), 62.

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