1st Edition

The Science of Learning and Development Enhancing the Lives of All Young People

Edited By Pamela Cantor, David Osher Copyright 2021
    288 Pages 2 B/W Illustrations
    by Routledge

    288 Pages 2 B/W Illustrations
    by Routledge

    This essential text unpacks major transformations in the study of learning and human development and provides evidence for how science can inform innovation in the design of settings, policies, practice, and research to enhance the life path, opportunity and prosperity of every child. The ideas presented provide researchers and educators with a rationale for focusing on the specific pathways and developmental patterns that may lead a specific child, with a specific family, school, and community, to prosper in school and in life.

    Expanding key published articles and expert commentary, the book explores a profound evolution in thinking that integrates findings from psychology with biology through sociology, education, law, and history with an emphasis on institutionalized inequities and disparate outcomes and how to address them. It points toward possible solutions through an understanding of and addressing the dynamic relations between a child and the contexts within which he or she lives, offering all researchers of human development and education a new way to understand and promote healthy development and learning for diverse, specific youth regardless of race, socioeconomic status, or history of adversity, challenge, or trauma.

    The book brings together scholars and practitioners from the biological/medical sciences, the social and behavioral sciences, educational science, and fields of law and social and educational policy. It provides an invaluable and unique resource for understanding the bases and status of the new science, and presents a roadmap for progress that will frame progress for at least the next decade and perhaps beyond.

    Foreword I: The Science of Learning and Development: Entering a New Frontier of Human Development Theory, Research, and Application

    Richard M. Lerner, G. John Geldhof, and Edmond P. Bowers

    Foreword II: We Should Treat Students as Whole People: Brain Science Proves It

    James Shelton

    Part 1: Features and Implications of the Science of Learning and Development

    1. Malleability, Plasticity, and Individuality: How Children Learn and Develop in Context

    Pamela Cantor, David Osher, Juliette Berg, Lily Steyer, and Todd Rose

    2. Drivers of Human Development: How Relationships and Context Shape Learning and Development

    David Osher, Pamela Cantor, Juliette Berg, Lily Steyer, and Todd Rose

    3. Developments in Developmental Research and Theory

    John R. Nesselroade

    4. Fostering Optimal Development and Averting Detrimental Development: Prescriptions, Proscriptions, and Specificity

    Marc H. Bornstein

    Part 2: Implications for Educational Practice of the Science of Learning and Development

    5. Using the Science of Learning and Development to Transform Educational Practice

    Linda Darling-Hammond, Lisa Flook, Channa Cook-Harvey, Brigid Barron, and David Osher

    6. Sciences of Learning and Development: Some Thoughts from the Learning Sciences

    James W. Pellegrino

    7. Practice That Supports Learning and Development: A Commentary

    Carol D. Lee

    8. Commentary: Relationships, Developmental Contexts, and the School Development Program

    James P. Comer

    Part 3: Focusing on Equity

    9. Teaching for Equity: Where Developmental Needs Meet Racialized Structures

    Na’ilah Suad Nasir

    10. Looking at SoLD Through an Equity Lens: Will the Science of Learning and Development Be Used to Advance Critical Pedagogy or Will It Be Used to Maintain Inequity by Design?

    Zaretta Hammond

    11. Equitable Learning and Development: Applying Science to Foster Liberatory Education

    Camille A. Farrington

    Part 4: Towards the Future of the Science of Learning and Development

    12. Making Developmental Science Accessible, Usable, and A Catalyst for Innovation

    Jack P. Shonkoff

    13. From the Science of Learning (and Development) to Learning Engineering

    Melina R. Uncapher

    14. The Future of the Science of Learning and Development: Whole-Child Development, Learning, and Thriving in an Era of Collective Adversity, Disruptive Change, and Increasing Inequality

    Pamela Cantor and David Osher


    Pamela Cantor, MD, is a child and adolescent psychiatrist specializing in trauma and the founder of Turnaround for Children, an organization grounded in science that builds the capacities of educators to buffer the negative impacts of trauma and intentionally promote healthy whole-child development and learning for every student. She is a governing partner of the Science of Learning and Development Alliance, which is elevating a diverse body of scientific literature to support the transformation of the systems that educate and develop children.

    David Osher, PhD, is Vice President and Institute Fellow at the American Institutes for Research, where he does research and supports practice, domestically and globally. He has led research, knowledge syntheses and technical assistance, and published on school climate and the conditions for learning; social and emotional learning; supportive, community-building approaches to school discipline and safety; cultural competence and responsiveness; family support and engagement, implementation science; and the science of learning and development. His recent publications include Creating Safe, Equitable, Engaging Schools and Keeping Students Safe and Helping Them Thrive: A Collaborative Handbook on School Safety, Mental Health, and Wellness.