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Linking Education and Neuroscience

Welcome to the Ed Neuro Lab!

We are a newly formed lab directed by Edward M. Hubbard in the Department of Educational Psychology and the Waisman Center at the University of Wisconsin-Madison.

The lab explores questions at the intersection of education and neuroscience, in the emerging field of Educational Neuroscience. Our research examines the neural underpinnings of cognitive processes that are relevant for education, and the role of educational experiences and enculturation as primary drivers of brain plasticity to create the neural circuits that underlie human specific abilities. Our research combines the latest technological advances in understanding the human brain as a “learning organ” with insights from cognitive psychology and education to help build the emerging field of educational neuroscience.

The lab focuses on three main areas:
1) the acquisition of mathematics in typical and atypically developing populations
2) the role of multi-sensory integration in learning; and
3) the role of learning in synesthesia, and the consequences of synesthesia for education.


Radhika to present at the American Synesthesia Association

Published on September 29, 2015, by

Ed and Radhika will be in Florida this weekend (October 2-4) at the American Synesthesia Association meeting at the University of Miami, Florida.  Radhika will be giving a talk titled “Decoding Grapheme-Color Synesthesia”, which presents our multi-voxel pattern analysis (MVPA) decoding results with real colors and synesthetic colors. Ed is one of the ASA board members and organizers of the conference.  Next year (2016), we will be hosting the ASA in Madison!


Ed quoted in WJS story about “Brain-Balancing” Program

Published on September 8, 2015, by

Ed was quoted in a skeptical Wisconsin Journal Sentinel story out today about a “Brain Balancing” program to help remediate a number of learning difficulties Selling Hope: Company pushes brain-balancing program for learning disabilities; evidence lacking.  This is one of the dangers of neuroscience and education; the enthusiasm and claims often far outpace the evidence.


Ed in Amsterdam to Speak at the Summer School on Multisensory Integration and Synesthesia

Published on June 25, 2015, by

Ed is (back) in Amsterdam to speak at the Amsterdam Brain and Cognition (ABC) Summer School on Multisensory Integration and Synesthesia. The symposium on synesthesia caps two weeks of advanced courses in the neuroscience of multisensory integration, with a daylong discussion of synesthesia and how it relates to multisensory integration.  In addition to Ed, speakers include David Brang and Romke Rouw.


Bio 152 Posters Today

Published on May 5, 2015, by

Four of our undergraduates students will presenting three research projects today in the Biology 152 poster session:

Brody Fitzpatrick, Aaron Muesch, Radhika Gosavi, & Edward M. Hubbard “Encoding and Retrieval Mechanisms During Memory Recall in Grapheme-Color Synesthetes: An Investigation of the Testing Effect”

Bryce Sprecher, John Binzak, and Edward Hubbard “The Cost of the Bar: Accessing Holistic Magnitudes Through Fraction Notation”

Rylan Benson, Zachary P. Grulke, & Edward M. Hubbard “The effect of joint attention intervention on behavior and cognition in autism: An EEG study”

Come by to support our incredible students, and to eat some free food.


Congratulations to our summer fellowship winners

Published on April 22, 2015, by

Congratulations to three of our undergraduates for their summer fellowship awards.  Becky Liu is the winner of a Welton Sophomore Research Apprenticeship Grant, and Grace George and Jen Hathaway are winners of the Hilldale Undergraduate/Faculty Research Fellowship.  Congratulations Jen, Grace and Becky!


Ed quoted in a new story about dyscalculia

Published on April 22, 2015, by

Ed was quoted in a new story about dyscalculia, based on the experiences of our friend Renee Newman-Hamilton, who runs the website http://www.dyscalculia.org/.  The story, written by Agata Blaszczak Boxe, is titled The Brain That Just Doesn’t Get Numbers.


Liz is going to Brain Camp

Published on April 14, 2015, by

Congratulations Liz, for your acceptance to the Summer Institute in Cognitive Neuroscience, known to attendees as “Brain Camp“.  The competition was intense, with only 70 people accepted out of more than 200 applicants.  This year’s Summer Institute, in Santa Barbara, CA will be held June 22-July 3, and focuses on a mix of methodological and developmental questions.  We’re expecting Liz to bring back lots of great information, and lots of great stories!


Chicago, here we come (AERA)

Published on April 11, 2015, by

The Ed Neuro Lab continues its spring travel schedule, heading to Chicago this week for AERA! We will mostly be at talks and activities related to the Brain Neuroscience and Education (BNE) SIG and the Research in Mathematics Education (RME) SIG.

Liz will be giving a talk titled Fractions on the Mental Number Line: How to Reverse the SNARC on Thursday, April 16, 2:15 to 3:45pm in the paper session 16.044 – Contemporary Examples in Educational Neuroscience (BNE SIG).

Ed will be giving a talk titled A Neurocognitive Model of Fractions Learning on Friday, April 17, 4:05 to 6:05pm in a symposium session 35.069 – Fractions Learning: One Subject, Multiple Perspectives (RME SIG).


Ed quoted in a story about dyscalculia

Published on April 11, 2015, by

Ed and our friend Gavin Price (at Vanderbilt) were quoted in a new mentalfloss post about dyscalculia, 11 Facts About the Math Disorder Dyscalculia.  It provides some basic information, in an easy to digest format, about current understanding and thinking about dyscalculia.



The Ed Neuro Lab is at CNS

Published on March 28, 2015, by

The Educational Neuroscience Lab has sent a party of three (Ed, Liz and Radhika) to the Cognitive Neuroscience Society meeting in lovely San Francisco!

We will be presenting three posters on our work

A108 (Saturday, 3:30 – 5:30) The Multisensory (AV) Representation of Number

D132 (Monday, 8:00 – 10:00) The Impact of Stimulus-Induced Processing Strategies on Symbolic Fraction Representations

F128 (Monday, 5:30 – 7:30 pm) Representation of symbolic fractions recruits circuits tuned to nonsymbolic ratio magnitude

If you’re around, stop by.  We’d love to see you!