The Mind, Brain, and Education (BRAIN) SIG is a forum for language educators and researchers to share insights in neuroscience. We hope to be a driving force in bringing relevant new discoveries in psychology, cognitive neuroscience, and neurolinguistics to language teaching in Japan.
Neuroscience is changing many parts of the world, but not ours. It is disturbing how slowly new findings are coming into the language classroom. We feel that if we wait for findings in neuroscience to percolate through linguistics and the other academic fields not directly related to our profession, we will miss too many opportunities to improve our practices. Therefore, we plan to learn as much as we can and teach each other. Since only a few of us are neuroscientists, we will have to (a) maintain standards of rigor in the work we do, (b) reach out to neuroscientists and psychologists abroad to inform us, and (c) remain appropriately humble about our own work. At this point, our primary goal is not to conduct our own research, but rather to study what others have discovered and consider the implications for our classroom practices.