Introduction to

Brain Based Learning


PREREQUISITE: Bachelorís degree in education or POI

COURSE LOCATION: Course is designed for online delivery, but may be adapted to the classroom.



Text: "Brain-Based Learning: The New Science of Teaching & Learning" by Eric Jensen.  Publisher: The Brain Store, San Diego, CA ISBN # 1-890460-05-2


Software: Inspiration (grade 6 to adult) or Kidspiration (K-5) mind mapping software.  You may select the version that you feel will best suit your needs.  The software is available through Inspiration Software  The software may also be available through your college store or through other educational software vendors.



The research of neuroscientists continues to add to our knowledge of the optimal learning environment.  The new knowledge continues to bring about discussion among educators and encourages the review of the methodology used in curriculum development, assessment and instruction.  This course will explore such topics as how learning takes place within the brain and how emotions, senses, memory and motivation interact in the learning process. 



1.      You will gain new insights that help you to provide increased opportunities for learning for each student in your classes.

2.      You will be able to define brain based learning and develop an understanding of how the brain learns.

3.      You will share and compare prior knowledge, new information, personal observations and reflections to help your classmates develop new strategies for teaching.

4.      You will develop an understanding of how children with multiple ranges of ability learn and gain insights about how to provide instruction that supports their development.

5.      You will understand how the pupilsí physiology leads to different approaches to learning and develop ways to eliminate some of the barriers to learning by adapting instruction to meet their diverse needs.

6.      You will develop additional instructional strategies that will help you to encourage the studentsí development of critical thinking skills and problem solving skills.

7.      You will learn from and share with your classmates insights about how to create a learning environment that encourages positive social interaction, active learning and self motivation.

8.      You will develop new skills for the effective use of verbal and nonverbal communication methods to create active inquiry, collaboration and interaction among your students.



Coursework is comprised of:

     1.  Unit readings

     2.  Unit action assignments (7 action assignments @ 10 points each=70 points)

     3.  Unit class discussions (7 unit discussions @ 10 points each=70 points)

     4.  Mind Mapping Project and Discussion (40 points)

     5.  Group project and Discussion (100 points)

     6.  Reflection paper (20 points)



See following pages or individual assignments for evaluation criteria.  There are a total of 300 possible points for the coursework.  Your final grade will be based on the points that you have accumulated.  The accumulated points will be divided by 300 to determine your final grade.  For instance, if you have accumulated a total of 250 points your grade will be 250 divided by 300 (final grade of 83 for a B).  The figure will be converted to a letter grade using the following chart.

Grade Equivalents

A =  94-100

A- =  90-93

B+ =  86-89

B =  83-85                                                  

B- =  80-82

C+ =  76-79

C =  73-75

C- =  70-72

D+ =  66-69

D =  63-65

D- =  60-62

Fail =  59 or below


Course Schedule







Unit 1


1. Read assigned websites.

2. Action  assignment

3. Unit discussion



Review of teaching and learning theory/styles.  Behavioral & cognitive theories of learning. (Identifying your teaching style.



Unit 2


1. Jensen text: Preface and chapters 1 & 2.

2. Websites as assigned in unit

3. Action assignment

4. Unit discussion


Introduction: what is brain based learning?


Unit 3


1. Jensen text: chapters 3,4,5, 6 & 7

2. Websites as assigned in unit.

3. Action assignment

4. Unit discussion


An Introduction to the brain: the physical side of learning


Unit 4



1. Jensen text: chapters 8,9,10,11,12 & 13

2. Websites as assigned in unit.

3. Action assignment

4. Unit discussion


The learning process and the learning environment



Unit 5


1. Jensen text chapters 14, 15, 16, 17,18

2. Websites as assigned in unit.

3. Action assignment

4. Unit discussion

5. Mind/concept mapping project

6. Mind/concept mapping project discussion


The brain, emotions and learning.

Concept/Mind Mapping Project Due.


Unit 6


1. Jensen text chapters 19, 20, 21, 22, 23.

2. Websites as assigned in unit.

3. Group project presentation

4. Discussion of group project presentation


Creating the brain based classroom.

(presentations of group projects)


Unit 7


1. Jensen text chapters 24 & 25.

2. Websites as assigned in unit.

3. Action assignment

4. Unit discussion



(peer review of group projects)

Reflection Paper Due



Title | Intro | Syllabus | Bibliography | Mind Mapping | Mapping on Web | Web Resources | Papers | Additional Resources | Unit 3 | Unit 3 Resources | Contact Us





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