Neuroscience for Neuro-diverse Learners
The University of Washington will provide technology-rich, hands-on experiences in neuroscience disciplines for high school and early postsecondary students (ages 16-21) identified as "neuro-diverse learners" those with academic challenges related to conditions such as dyspraxia, dyslexia, and, autism spectrum disorder and disseminate findings to teachers of courses that are related to neuroscience and, more broadly, science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM). The project also provides activities for educators, parents, and other stakeholders who work with neuro-diverse learners. The project is led by the University of Washington's Disabilities, Opportunities, Internetworking, and Technology (DO-IT) Center and the Center for Neurotechnology (CNT). The goal is to enhance student interest in and skills to successfully pursue STEM fields, as well as empower educators to serve these students more effectively.
The University of Washington project takes a student-centered approach that embraces cutting-edge neuroscience, the social model of disability, social justice education, disability as a diversity issue, universal design, and a multi-faceted view of student engagement and retention. The project will provide hands-on experiences in neuroscience disciplines, networking opportunities, and resources to high school and early postsecondary students identified as "neuro-diverse." The project will have both a formative component to field test materials, track activities and progress toward project goal and objectives, and assess and document program fidelity. In addition to hands-on and technology-rich activities, the project will include team-building, problem-solving, communities of engagement, and mentoring activities for neuro-diverse students; professional development for educators; and resources for multiple stakeholders.