The Neuroscience of Learning and Development
Enhancing Creativity, Compassion, Critical Thinking, and Peace in Higher Education

Paper: 978 1 62036 284 6 / $35.00
Published: January 2016  

Cloth: 978 1 62036 283 9 / $95.00
Published: February 2016  

Lib E-Book: 978 1 62036 285 3 / $95.00  
About Library E-Book

Published: January 2016  

E-Book: 978 1 62036 286 0 / $27.99
Published: January 2016  

Publisher: Stylus Publishing
376 pp., 6" x 9"
16 figures & 13 tables
Is higher education preparing our students for a world that is increasingly complex and volatile, and in which they will have to contend with uncertainty and ambiguity? Are we addressing the concerns of employers who complain that graduates do not possess the creative, critical thinking, and communication skills needed in the workplace?

This book harnesses what we have learned from innovations in teaching, from neuroscience, experiential learning, and studies on mindfulness and personal development to transform how we deliver and create new knowledge, and indeed transform our students, developing their capacities for adaptive boundary spanning.

Starting from the premise that our current linear, course-based, educational practices are frequently at odds with how our neurological system facilitates learning and personal development, the authors set out an alternative model that emphasizes a holistic approach to education that integrates mindful inquiry practice with self-authorship and the regulation of emotion as the cornerstones of learning, while demonstrating how these align with the latest discoveries in neuroscience.

The book closes by offering practical ideas for implementation, showing how simple refinements in classroom and out-of-classroom experiences can create foundations for students to develop key skills that will enhance adaptive problem solving, creativity, overall wellbeing, innovation, resilience, compassion, and ultimately world peace.

Co-published with ACPA – College Student Educators International

Table of Contents:
Foreword—Gavin W. Henning
Foreword—Ralph Wolff
Preface—Marilee J. Bresciani Ludvik
Introduction: Rethinking How We Design, Deliver, and Evaluate Higher Education—Marilee J. Bresciani Ludvik

1) Basic Brain Parts and Their Functions—Matthew R. Evrard, Jacopo Annese, and Marilee J. Bresciani Ludvik, with review by Mark Baxter and Thomas Van Vleet
2) Unpacking Neuroplasticity and Neurogenesis—Matthew Evrard and Marilee J. Bresciani Ludvik, with review by Thomas Van Vleet
3) Strategies That Intentionally Change the Brain—Marilee J. Bresciani Ludvik, Matthew R. Evrard, and Philippe Goldin, with review by Thomas Van Vleet
4) (Re)Conceptualizing Meaning Making in Higher Education: A Case for Integrative Educational Encounters That Prepare Students for Self-Authorship—Emily Marx and Lisa Gates
5) Intentional Design of High-Impact Experiential Learning—Patsy Tinsley McGill
6) Enhancing Well-Being and Resilience—Christine L. Hoey
7) Enhancing Creativity—Shaila Mulholland
8) Enhancing Compassion and Empathy—Sara Schairer
9) Balance Begets Integration: Exploring the Importance of Sleep, Movement, and Nature—Bruce Bekkar
10) Enhancing and Evaluating Critical Thinking Dispositions and Holistic Student Learning and Development Through Integrative Inquiry—Marilee J. Bresciani Ludvik, Philippe Goldin, Matthew R. Evrard, J. Luke Wood, Wendy Bracken, Charles Iyoho, and Mark Tucker
11) Mindfulness at Work in Higher Education Leadership: From Theory to Practice Within the Classroom and Across the University—Les P. Cook and Anne Beffel
12) A Mindful Approach to Navigating Strategic Change—Laurie J. Cameron

Afterword: Adoption, Adaptation, and Transformation—Marilee J. Bresciani Ludvik
About the Editor and Contributors

Sample Chapter
YouTube Video: Training Attention in the Classroom

Reviews & Endorsements:
“This book forced me to reconsider everything I knew about college student learning.

The authors of this book suggest that the way we organize higher education to deliver learning and development is not aligned with how the neurological system facilitates that learning. To see an impact from the ways we foster learning we need to examine how we teach (in all its forms). We must find ways to help students integrate experiences and help them develop as whole beings.

College student educators must create opportunities for students to make associations between what they are learning across experiences and link their cognitive learning with their psychosocial development allowing them to make neurological connections that will positively impact their ability to succeed. But, the structure of colleges and universities is not constructed to help students make these connections.

In an accessible, easy-to-understand approach, the authors of The Neuroscience of Learning and Development help the reader understand the brain and neurological bases of learning. After reading this book, I felt prepared to begin transforming how I design, deliver, and evaluate student learning and development to positively impact students.”
- Gavin W. Henning, President , ACPA – College Student Educators International, and Associate Professor, New England College, New Hampshire
"Breakthroughs in brain science will be the major disruptive innovation in higher education. A friend and neurologist convinced me that success as a college teacher required an understanding of the developing brain's impact on capacity for learning. In turn, I regularly push Student Affairs to use Student Development theories to advance the field of learning assessment. If one believes in individual differences based on varied paths through physical and psychosocial developments (and I do), then why would we expect standardized tests administered at arbitrary points in time to work well in measuring student achievement? Marilee is spot-on with the topics in this book. I expect the volume to make a big impact."
- Randy L. Swing, Executive Director , Association for Institutional Research