A popular but false belief about the brain. Also: neuro-myth.
I am fascinated by our growing understandings of the human brain and the implications for learning and teaching. But I've always been sceptical about some of the claims being made about these implications. Educators need to resist the temptation to use neuroscience as a promotional tool for pet ideas, values and prejudices.
The term "neuromyths" has been coined for some of the grandiose claims that educators have made over the past 10 years about the brain and learning.
So here are some neuromyths and neurofacts. First, the myths. There are no grounds in neurology for believing that certain movements and certain kinds of music cause certain kinds of learning. Music and movement do aid concentration and help the brain achieve the best state for learning, namely relaxed alertness. Other claims about music, movement and learning may be accurate, but are not based on robust science.
—Ian Smith, "Who knows how the brain really works," The Times Educational Supplement, November 24, 2006
Refinements in neurotechnology are powering the domain of neuroscience, and this new level of understanding will have profound effects on executive education going forward. The fields of applied neuroeconomics, neuromarketing and neurofinance have executives wide awake and on the edge of their seats. New information is released daily which confirms our belief that the brain is more than a tangle of grey and white matter. We now know that we can debunk a number of neuro-myths. The most widely recognised of these is the differentiation between left and right brain functioning. Research shows that the brain works as a whole and that integrated learning stimulates the whole brain — for instance, using Buzan's mind maps, visualising in colour, speaking aloud, questioning, answering, discussing and analysing certainly gets the whole brain going.
—Jocelin Kagan, "Time to use the brain in executive education," Business Day, June 27, 2005
And it's a pity that Dr Leo, one of the neurologists we encounter, perpetuates the American neuromyth that Ondine's curse is named after a Greek nymph. He (not she) was a Nordic water nymph condemned never to sleep again, having been caught with his swimming trunks down, so to speak.
—Alan Crockard, "Confessions of a brain surgeon," New Scientist, December 21, 1996