WE CONDUCT MULTIFACETED RESEARCH

UChicago SLC researchers engage in multifaceted educational research, including laboratory studies that identify robust learning principles and test the efectiveness of interventions, studies of learning in home and school environments, and analyses of existing datasets. Researchers also study learning at multiple levels of analysis, from the study of the individual learner’s behaviors and underlying neural mechanisms, to how social and cultural structures support learning. These varied approaches drive the four major objectives of the UChicago Science of Learning Center:

Identifying Learning Principles and Mechanisms

Basic research is vital not only to thinking about how best to teach diferent concepts and school subjects, but also to understanding the qualities of the human mind. By identifying the mechanisms that underlie learning critical concepts, we are contributing to theory and practice.

Characterizing Learning Trajectories

Understanding learning trajectories is critical to developing interventions for individuals at different points on the learning path. This involves understanding how children are afected by cognitive and socio-emotional factors. By studying parent-child and teacher-child interactions, we are identifying the kinds of interactions that promote the development of strong cognitive skills and positive learning mindsets.

Accelerating Learning Trajectories

The findings that emerge from our research on learning, lead us to develop and assess promising learning tools that can be used at home and at school. These include the use technology to enhance knowledge and attitudes about learning.

Developing Powerful Analytic Tools

Our ability to understand the complex factors that afect learning depends on having sensitive and powerful analytic tools. Our faculty include leaders in the development of new methodological strategies for studying psychological change and growth, designing experiments, drawing causal inference from experimental and non-experimental data, testing theories of causal mediation, and designing formative assessments of student learning for the purpose of improving instruction.