Andrew Butler

Andrew Butler

Dr. Butler’s research focuses on applying the science of learning to enhance educational practice. He is interested in student-focused interventions that involve implementing simple but powerful principles within educational contexts to improve long-term retention and promote deeper understanding. In addition, he is interested in helping teachers to acquire knowledge about how to use principles from the science of learning to improve and expand their pedagogy. Finally, he also investigates how technology can be leveraged to facilitate learning inside and outside of the classroom.

Talk Title - Facilitating student learning through feedback: Small changes can make a big difference 

Robert Goldstone Done

Robert Goldsone

Robert Goldstone is Chancellor’s Professor in the Psychological and Brain Sciences department and Cognitive Science program at Indiana University. His research interests include concept learning and representation, perceptual learning, educational applications of cognitive science, decision making, collective behavior, and computational modeling of human cognition. He won the 2000 APA Distinguished Scientific Award for Early Career Contribution to Psychology, and a 2004 Troland research award from the National Academy of Sciences. He was the executive editor of Cognitive Science from 2001-2005. He has been elected as a fellow of the Society of Experimental Psychologists (2004), the Cognitive Science Society (2006), and the American Academy of Arts and Sciences (2016).

Talk Title - Learning about Complex Systems

Barb Oakley 

Barbara Oakley

Barbara Oakley, PhD, PE is the Ramón y Cajal Distinguished Scholar of Global Digital Learning at McMaster University. Her work focuses on the complex relationship between neuroscience and social behavior. Together with Terrence Sejnowski, the Francis Crick Professor at the Salk Institute, she teaches Coursera – UC San Diego’s “Learning How to Learn,” the world’s most popular massive open online course. Her book Mindshift: Break Through Obstacles to Learning and Discover Your Hidden Potential is a lead title for Penguin in 2017.

Talk Title - How to snag today's "free range" learners

Workshop - Lessons from a basement studio: How creating the world’s largest MOOC changed my approach to teaching

Terry Sejnowski

Terry Sejnowski

Terry Sejnowski is a scientist for all seasons. Trained as a theoretical physicist, he was a pioneer in the neural network revolution and trailblazed a new computational approach to understanding brain function. He holds the Francis Crick Chair at The Salk Institute for Biological Studies, a Distinguished Professor at the University of California at San Diego and is a member of the National Academy of Sciences, the National Academy of Medicine, and the National Academy of Engineering.

Talk Title - The Age of Information: Preparing for the tsunami

Yana Weinstein

Yana Weinstein

Yana Weinstein became an Assistant Professor at University of Massachusetts Lowell in 2013, having received her PhD in Psychology from University College London and 4 years’ postdoctoral training at Washington University in St. Louis. Yana's research interests lie in improving student’s test preparation strategies and performance, as well as the judgments students make about their learning. Yana poses questions with direct applied relevance: How can we help students choose optimal study strategies? Why are test scores sometimes surprising to students? And how does retrieval practice help students learn?

Talk Title: Supporting teachers and students with the science of learning: Challenges and solutions


Workshop LeaderBiography

Liam Stockdale

Liam Stockdale 

Dr. Liam Stockdale is a postdoctoral fellow at the Paul R. MacPherson Institute for Leadership, Innovation & Excellence in Teaching at McMaster University, where he provides research and instructional design support for projects involving the integration of new technologies into university teaching. A political scientist by training, he previously held a postdoctoral fellowship at McMaster’s Institute on Globalization and the Human Condition, and has published several articles in the areas of international relations and globalization, as well as the book Taming an Uncertain Future: Temporality, Sovereignty, and the Politics of Anticipatory Governance (Rowman & Littlefield, 2016). At McMaster, he teaches an introductory course on globalization and global citizenship for the faculty of Social Sciences and an upper year inquiry course on global justice and security for the Arts & Science program. He has also previously designed and taught distance learning courses for Humber College and the Canadian Forces College.

Workshop - Social media as a teaching and learning tool in the university classroom

Irina Ghilic 

Irina Ghilic

Irina Ghilic is currently a Ph.D. student in the department of Psychology, Neuroscience & Behaviour at McMaster University. She is interested in researching two factors that affect student learning during lectures: note taking and beat gestures. Throughout her program of study, Irina hopes to explore what elements drive note taking differences in student learning, and apply this research to develop workshops and information sessions for students and instructors, to optimize their use of note taking in the classroom. Since gestures can be used to emphasize a speaker’s main points, aid with transitions between topics, and disambiguate complex information, Irina is also interested in evaluating the role of gestures in the academic lecture. Her hope is to work on bridging the gap between applied cognition in education research, learning strategies, and teaching practices.

Workshop - Note taking: How research can better inform practice.


Ellen MacLellan

Ellen MacLellan recently completed her PhD in Cognitive Psychology in the Department of Psychology, Neuroscience, & Behaviour at McMaster University. Her doctoral dissertation focused on basic attention processes that support learning and memory. She is currently transitioning into a Postdoctoral Fellowship in the Applied Cognition in Education Laboratory. She has recently been awarded grants from the Arts Research Board (ARB) at McMaster and the Association of Psychological Science (APS) to pursue a program of research aimed at investigating the boundary conditions under which concept mapping is most effective in a classroom setting. A secondary objective of this research program is to develop evidence-based guidelines from a cognitive perspective for the effective use of concept mapping for wide scale implementation in an introductory psychology course.

Workshop - Concept Mapping

Jennifer Askey 

Jennifer Askey

Jennifer Askey, PhD is an academic life and career coach and sole proprietor of Energized Academic. Jennifer leverages over a decade as a successful professor at universities in the US and Canada with tools and insight from the world of life and career coaching. She works with academics of all stripes to fine-tune their objectives, get the most out of their opportunities, and align their work life with their values. She adamantly believes that every scholar--inside and outside the academy--has the opportunity to “own” his or her career and live a life that honours their values in the world.

Workshop - (Re)thinking about your academic purpose: A values-based approach to career development

Barb 2 

Barbara Fenesi

Barbara's doctoral research focused on incorporating cognitive and behavioral science with educational practice to examine effective instructional design. Her work investigated the optimal design of multimedia instructional tools to promote meaningful, long-term learning across diverse cognitive abilities. She also examined student and instructor perceptions (and misperceptions) of effective instructional design and the corresponding impact on motivation, satisfaction and learning. Barbara is currently a postdoctoral fellow in the NeuroFit Lab at McMaster University applying her background in cognitive psychology to better understand factors that promote brain and body health.

Workshop - Presentation by Design

Amy Pachai 

Amy Pachai

Amy Pachai is currently a Ph.D. student in the department of Psychology, Neuroscience & Behaviour at McMaster University. Her research uses both classroom and laboratory studies to understand the causes and consequences of mind wandering during lectures. Her program of research has explored ways to reduce mind wandering, including through the use of effective multimedia design and in-lecture quizzing. For the past 5 years, she has also been involved in McMaster University’s Introductory Psychology courses. Her role has evolved from multiple choice question writing and quiz bank analysis to her current role as final editor for all incoming multiple choice questions.

Workshop - Writing multiple choice questions to create effective tests