DUH we learned that a billion years ago.
And no, we don't mean learning how to drive aggressively by playing Mario Kart.
Think humans are special because we can show one another how to do things? Think again. According to a study published this week in the journal Science, humpback whales not only developed new ways to hunt different prey -- they also shared that information with other whales, teaching one another new hunting techniques.
Fly larvae -- fine, maggots -- that are raised on food spiked with alcohol grow up into flies who can't learn normally without the aid of a little booze juice
, marking yet another way in which maggots are pretty much just like college students. A study demonstrating the difficulties maggots experienced while trying to process new information without the aid of a morning beer to take the edge off things appears this week in the journal Current Biology,
which reminds us that keg stands are not always recreational choices -- sometimes they are educational tools.
Good news for the productivity-minded individual -- the eight hours a day you spend dead to the world in the comforting embrace of sleep is time you could be getting work done. Hooray? Well, maybe. While reading or learning another language while you catch some shut-eye is still the stuff of fantasy, new research from the Weizmann Institute
suggests that learning in one's sleep may be a possibility, and that previous attempts just haven't used the right combination of senses to make our subconscious minds start paying attention. Researchers have now used sounds and smell to get sleeping brains to expect a combination of the two sensations
without any input from the conscious mind, according to a study published in the journal Nature Neuroscience
Renowned as a premiere institute of higher learning for the sundry sciences, the Massachusetts Institute of Technology
announced a new program that will bring a free version
of one of its classes online. The program is called MITx,
and the first of its fully automated courses kicks off this fall with 6.002x Circuits and Electronics
. In addition to no costs, there are no prerequisites, anyone anywhere can sign up, and will receive a certificate upon completion. Seems like everyone is giving away university courses these days, huh?
When we think of students using social media, it's hard not to imagine the college freshman holed up in the library spending hours on Facebook
when they should be studying for exams, but maybe there is a little more value in social media for students than you would think. An interesting infographic by Masters in Education
suggests that being involved in social media is actually good for students' grades. However, the graphic doesn't really get into the nuts and bolts of how they established a correlation.
Still, some of the claims seem pretty believable, like students using social media to organize themselves into a study group when one wasn't organized by a professor. Even if the social media addict is unlikely to be at the top of the class, it is still good to note that there are positive ways to use social media for educational purposes. It doesn't have to be a brain sucking vortex of wasted time, in fact, it could provide some great new ways for students to learn.