The Brain Science > Brain and Mind

Brain and Mind

Instructor(s): Self Paced Open Education Resource
Self Paced Open Education Resource

Title: The Best Teachers in the World

Progia Staff in consultation with the experts in their respective fields have scoured the open education resources to design and organize this course.

Progia salutes the content authors and their respective education institutes. Progia also acknowledges their expertise and generous contributions for making learning more accessible.



Course Description:

Why learn about your brain? The answer is simple and powerful.

"How can you be in control of something if you don’t know what it is? This is why it is important to know something about your brain—the part of your body involved in thinking, learning and feeling. Your brain may be incredibly complex with billions of neurons and other kinds of cells, but we don’t have to be neuroscientists to understand the basics. So, mind your brain! Get to know it so you can better know yourself.

In the simplest terms, you really have three brains in one. The reptilian brain manages our automatic responses such as breathing and body temperature. The emotional, or limbic brain is responsible for generating emotions, encoding some memories, and turning on and off our stress responses. And, the cortical brain is where our critical and creative thinking occurs."  -the hawn foundation

Knowing how your brain makes sense of the world around you and the evolutionary basis of feelings, emotions and non-verbal cues in shaping your social behavior, and with practice, you can be more 'mindful'.

With mindfulness, you can do amazing things. It will make you smarter. It will make you happier. Tempering your natural response to emotional situations effortlessly will improve your personal relationships with friends, relatives and co-workers. And all this is just the beginning!

The best part is that the new science says "any one can master these techniques!"

 

About the course: The brain has an average weight of about 3 pounds and appearance of a small cauliflower. But thanks to its 100 billion nerve cells and with each cell connected to 5000 or more other cells, we can think, plan, talk, imagine, and so much more. Technology is finally unlocking the secrets of the brain, giving us the first hand look into its working. This short and interesting course gives you a meaningful insight into the science of brain.

At the end of this course, you will know:

- Structure and organization of brain

- Brain functions

- Relationship between brain and the mind

The course includes a short quiz to test your learning before and after taking the course.

 

 

 

Course Sessions:
  • Session 1A: What Makes us Human?
  • Content Author(s): BBC Series (Host Armand Leroi)

    Session Description:

    ‘What makes us human’ is undoubtedly the most intriguing question.

    Looking at the brains of human, chimpanzee and monkey it is hard to tell the difference between them. In fact up to 4 to 6 months of age, the capacities of human infants and infants of other species are about the same. So what is the human spark that sets us apart from other species?

    Host Armand Leroi appears in this BBC video series with a chimpanzee named Harry and explores the following:
    While our closest animal relatives have been swinging from the trees, humans have built a world that is vastly more complex. What are the defining features that have allowed us to do this? Are we special, and separate from all other animals, or are we just an especially successful mammal?

    The findings may surprise you. It turns out humans are exceptionally good at imitating. Copying what we see comes easy to us. Is this the basis of rapid learning and all this progress by humans?

    The next session digs deeper into this question and explores the biological basis for this distinction.


  • Session 1B: What Makes us Human Part 2
  • Content Author(s): BBC Series (Host Armand Leroi)

    Session Description:

    What Makes us Human Part 2. from BBC.

    Continuing from the previous session, the BBC host Armand Lero says Humans are relentless imitators. We can put ourselves in other people's shoes. What is the biological reason for it?  Studying autistic children who have difficulty copying others, the role of  Mirror Neurons is uncovered.

    The key deficit in the brain of autistic children is the deficit of mirror neurons.

    A remarkable finding is that In general,  there is not much difference between playing base ball  and watching base ball as far as the human brain activity is concerned;  the same neurons fire in both cases.

    The next two videos in the series (not included here) explore if the capacity to use a sophisticated language sets us apart from other animals.

    The answer, it turns out, is a most definite yes. A mutation in the 'speech gene' and the ensuing evolution of language changed everything for humans.

    Language is the ultimate human spark!

     

     

     

     


  • Session 2A. Brain structure: Neurons
  • Content Author(s): L. Todd Rose

    Session Description:

    This is the first video chapter in a five-part introductory series on the brain. The video chapters were developed as part of the Educational Neuroscience course at the Harvard Graduate School of Education. Chapter 1 covers the basics of neuron structure and function


  • Session 2B.Brain Structure: Brain stem and Cerebullum
  • Content Author(s): L. Todd Rose

    Session Description:

    This is the second video chapter in a five-part introductory series on the brain. The video chapters were developed as part of the Educational Neuroscience course at the Harvard Graduate School of Education. Chapter 2 provides a brief overview of the brain stem, cerebellum, and key areas in the diencephalon.


  • Session 2C Brain structure: Cerebrum
  • Content Author(s): L. Todd Rose

    Session Description:

    This is the third video chapter in a five-part introductory series on the brain. The video chapters were developed as part of the Educational Neuroscience course at the Harvard Graduate School of Education. Chapter 3 introduces key areas of the cerebrum, including the cortex and sub-cortical structures such as the basal ganglia, amygdala, and the hippocampus.

     


  • Session 2D Brain structure: Frontal Cortex
  • Content Author(s): L. Todd Rose

    Session Description:

    This is the fourth video chapter in a five-part introductory series on the brain. The video chapters were developed as part of the Educational Neuroscience course at the Harvard Graduate School of Education. Chapter 4 introduces the lobes of the cortex, and focuses on the frontal lobes.


  • Session 2E Brain structure: Sensory Lobes
  • Content Author(s): L. Todd Rose

    Session Description:

    This is the fifth video chapter in a five-part introductory series on the brain. The video chapters were developed as part of the Educational Neuroscience course at the Harvard Graduate School of Education.
    Chapter 5 provides an overview of the sensory lobes.


  • Session 2F: Summary: How Brain is organized
  • Content Author(s): Hank Fabian

    Session Description:

    Dr. Fabian Identifying Parts of the Human Brain


  • Session 2G: Quiz Brain Anatomy
  • Content Author(s): Dr. Mahendra Pratap

    Session Description:

    Test Your Knowledge of Brain Anatomy


  • Session 3: Evolution of Brain and Mind
  • Content Author(s): LouAnn Gerken

    Session Description:

    What does anybody need a brain for? Brains are energetically expensive to make and to use, and susceptible to making mistakes. Accordingly, not learning, i.e. sticking to an innate or random strategy, is often the best thing to do. Still, humans and other animals display sophisticated learning and cognition. Recent research shows that each animal has specific learning abilities and lacks others according to its environment and evolutionary history. Understanding what different brains are used for can help us understand why they evolved.


  • Session 3A: Making of the Mind
  • Content Author(s): LouAnn Gerken

    Session Description:

    We're all born with a brain, but when does our brain begin to construct a model of the world a mind? Research now suggests that infants not only absorb a remarkable amount of information about the physical and social world, they also use this information much like scientists to make guesses about the structure of that world. By creating tentative models of different aspects of the world based on very small amounts of data, infants use their developing models to predict the behavior of objects, people and the world around them.


  • Session 4: Exercise Your Brain
  • Content Author(s): open education resource

    Session Description:

    These and similar exercises are a fun way to keep your brain active: awaken your neuronal networks and build up your creative thinking skills. You will be stimulating and strengthening your neurons, bolstering healthy dendrites, and extending their branches to make new connections.

    Give these a try and see for yourself. The second exercise sampler file is taken as is from http://www.workman.com/


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