The Mission

The Science of Learning Institute seeks to understand and optimize the most essential part of our human capital: the ability to learn. The Institute supports interdisciplinary research, training, and outreach programs that will generate scientific discoveries and build meaningful connections between research, practice, and policy.

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Partnering with the community

SLI is partnering with the Center for Transformative Teaching & Learning to disseminate and translate science of learning research to the K-12 education community.

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News Highlight

After seeing students' enthusiasm for his line of work during a visit to Patterson High School, Distinguished Science of Learning Fellow Corbin Cunningham designed a daylong program on Hopkins' campus that exposed them to the fun — and accessibility — of college-level science.

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Generating New Ideas

Facilitating dialog and interaction across the divisions and schools of Johns Hopkins University is critical for generating new, interdisciplinary research in the science of learning and instilling a culture of collaboration. SLI's method for doing this is the Belgian Beer Event (BBE):  Several times during each year, faculty, research scientists, postdoctoral fellows, and graduate students from across the university are invited to present their research and mingle in a casual, conversational atmosphere.  The locations of these community-building events vary across Johns Hopkins campuses in order to promote greater diversity in participation. 

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News Highlight

Dr. Barbara Landau, is among the 84 newly elected members of the National Academy of Sciences, in recognition of their distinguished and continuing original research.

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News Highlight

With a 1.4 million federal grant from the Institute of Education Sciences, SLI researchers will test a novel approach to teaching 3rd-grade science.

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Conducting Cutting-Edge Science of Learning Research.

Our grant programs generate new scientific discoveries about lifelong learning through interdisciplinary collaborations spanning basic and applied sciences.  

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Training Future Leaders in the Science of Learning.

We train scientists how to think broadly about learning, generate innovative perspectives and research on how we learn, and how to build meaningful connections between research, practice, and policy. 

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Connecting Science to Practice.

We collaborate with educators, practitioners, and policymakers to advance the understanding of science of learning research and translate research into meaningful, evidence-based practices, programs, and policies.

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Funded Research

How ‘rational’ is the learning process?

This project combines behavioral experiments with a philosophical analysis of learning models to determine whether we integrate new information in a way that obeys the principles of rational inference.

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Do novice and experienced teen drivers show neurophysiological...

We will use behavioral, psychophysiological, and neuroimaging techniques to explore neurophysiological markers of hazard detection in experienced versus inexperienced teenage drivers.

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Can technology enable effective and efficient learning of...

This work will bring together scientific principles from peer learning in adults, machine learning, and surgical skill assessment to deliver a scalable methodology to augment technology to support humans learning complex skills.

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Upcoming Events

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Recent News

Flamingos, elephants, and sharks: How do blind adults learn about...

Study finds that people born blind develop rich and accurate ideas about appearance based on cultural inference

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SLI-funded scientists ask what animal brains have in common with...

In an effort to improve robotic swarming algorithms, an interdisciplinary team of scientists will study how the brain allows an animal to navigate and change its route while moving.

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Barbara Landau, elected to the National Academy of Sciences

Barbara Landau elected to the National Academy of Sciences

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Our Experts

Dr. Ana Arenivas

Instructor, Department of Neuropsychology

Dr. Jaqueline Nunn

Associate Dean, Technology Columbia Center, School of Education

Dr. Linda Tsantis

Associate Professor

Dr. Kechen Zhang

Associate Professor, Department of Biomedical Engineering

Kara Blacker

Distinguished Science of Learning Fellow

Dr. Patricia Janak

Professor, Department of Psychological and Brain Sciences

Dr. Jeremiah Cohen

Assistant Professor, Brain Science Institute, Department of Neuroscience

Dr. Karin Sandmel

Assistant Professor, Department of Special Education

Dr. Dean Foster Wong

Professor, Department of Radiology and Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences

Dr. Susan Courtney

Professor, Department of Psychological and Brain Sciences

Dr. Samer Hattar

Associate Professor, Department of Biology

Dr. Anand Mattay

Investigator and Director of the Neuroimaging Core Facility at the Lieber Institute

Dr. Xiaoqin Wang

Professor, Department of Biomedical Engineering; Director, Tsinghua-Johns Hopkins Joint Center...

Dr. Burcu Unlutabak

Post-Doctoral Research Fellow

Dr. Reza Shadmehr

Professor, Departments of Biomedical Engineering and Neuroscience  

Dr. Paul Rothman

Frances Watt Baker, M.D., and Lenox D. Baker Jr., M.D. Dean of Medical Faculty and Vice...

Dr. Marina Bedny

Assistant Professor, Department of Psychological and Brain Sciences

Dr. Kellie Tamashiro

Associate Professor, Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences