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With so many claims about education products and practices, what does it mean to be "research-based" when it comes to knowledge of the brain? Whether you want to learn about brain-based teaching methods, help students improve reading and writing skills, or explore the possibilities brain research provides, the Education Connection...
With so many claims about education products and practices, what does it mean to be "research-based" when it comes to knowledge of the brain? Whether you want to learn about brain-based teaching methods, help students improve reading and writing skills, or explore the possibilities brain research provides, the Education Connection of BrainConnection.com is for you.
This site (developed by Scientific Learning Corporation), provides a number of simple tutorial modules on topics related to brains, minds and learning. These modules are simple by design, being aimed at the public in general and the teachers and parents of children with specific difficulties in language and reading in particular.
What concerns me most about this site is that it is primarily a promotional medium for a specific and controversial computer-based intervention program, Fast ForWord. It is, in my opinion, a subtly produced Infomercial. I'd have serious reservations about using it in teaching unless students are sophisticated enough to separate the science from the sales pitch.
[NOTE: Time spent examining the site: 2 hrs].
For a fairly thorough and even-handed review of the Fast ForWord Language intervention program, check out the report provided by the Florida Center for Reading Research. It's available at:
There is an extensive and growing literature on the issues and controversies surrounding the theoretical and clinical basis of Fast ForWord. The following articles (along with their citations) provide starting-points for anyone wanting more information on those issues.
Agnew, JA, Dorn, C. & Eden, GF (2004). Effects of intensive training on auditory processing in reading skills. Brain & Language, 88, 21-25.
Alexander, AW & Slinger-Constant, A-M. (2004). Current status of treatments for dyslexia: Critical review. J. Child Neurol. 19(10),
Friel-Patti, S, Loeb, DF, Gillam, RB. (2001). Looking ahead: An introdution to five exploratory studies of Fast ForWord. Am. J. Speech-Language Pathol. 10, 194-202.
Hook, PE, Macaruso, P & Jones, S. (2001). Efficacy of Fast ForWord training on facilitating acquisition of reading skills by children with reading difficulties - A longitudinal study. Annals of Dyslexia, 51, 75-96.
Mody, M. & Studdert-Kennedy, M. & Brady, S. (1997). Speech perception deficits in poor readers: Auditory processing or phonological coding? J. Exp. Child Psych, 64, 199-231.
Tallal, P, Merzenich, MM, Miller, S & Jenkins, W. (1998). Language learning impairments: Integrating basic science, technology and remediation. Exptal Brain Res. 123, 210-219.
Used in course
13 years ago
I went through the site to see what the different links held. While I would not use this site within a specific lesson. It could be a good source for students trying to decide what kind of research paper or oral report to give in an undergraduate Educational Psychology course.
The links worked and there seemed to be no problems accessing the different areas.