Looking at Learning Through an Evolutionary Lens

3-Star learning experiences

The idea for this blog is based on Chapter 2 from ‘Standing on the Shoulders of Giants’.

Mirjam Neelen & Paul A. Kirschner

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Why are some things so easy to learn and why do we struggle with others? Why are we motivated to learn one thing, but dread the next? Why do people prefer talking to each other instead of focusing on (sometimes difficult) stuff they need to learn? These are all interesting questions. David Geary (2008) sheds light on the answers to them by looking at learning through an evolutionary lens. This lens helps us understand why we can learn certain things so ‘naturally’ while others require blood, sweat, and tears.

We humans have evolved to create culture (e.g., a common system of beliefs that facilitate cooperation, a division of labour, formal and informal expectations for the behaviour of in-group members, as well as the sharing of…

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