A Mind, Brain, and Education (MBE) Approach

The interdisciplinary approach to understanding the developing and learning child from multiple perspectives taken by the Department is not unique, although Dartmouth may be the only undergraduate institution with a Department of Education committed to MBE. A number of leading schools have similar programs connecting psychology, neuroscience, and educational practice; for example, the Harvard University Graduate School of Education Mind, Brain, and Education Program, the Centre for Neuroscience in Education at the University of Cambridge, and the Learning in Informal and Formal Environments (LIFE) Center, a collaboration between the University of Washington and Stanford University, among others. Internationally, the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) is committed to fostering links between rigorous research and educational practice, as is the International Mind, Brain, and Education Society.

In June 2008 the National Council for Accreditation of Teacher Education (NCATE) convened an expert panel to make recommendations to teacher educators about how principles of child and adolescent development are taught, integrated, and applied within teacher education programs and to make recommendations to policymakers about “changing the culture of schools to include scientific knowledge about child and adolescent development.” The Dartmouth Department of Education is at the leading edge of thinking about education: Understanding the cognitive, emotional, linguistic, social, moral, and motivational development of children and adolescents from many perspectives and using that empirical knowledge to inform thinking about classroom practice is at the core of our mission.