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Franklin Institute

Grant Information

Year Awarded
Dana Education

This grant will support an update of the Franklin Institute’s Neuroscience and Society high school curriculum. The curriculum offers an in-depth focus on neuroscience through the lens of societal issues relevant to older teenagers. The Franklin Institute plans to complete the update by the start of the 2023-2024 school year.

Through interactive classroom activities and discussions, projects supporting inquiry-based learning, and opportunities to analyze real case studies and relevant interpretations of neuroscience in popular culture, the curriculum teaches students about neuroanatomy and neurotransmission, drugs and addiction, education and development, law and criminology, and well-being. The curriculum has been fully evaluated and tested in schools with demonstrated positive outcomes on students.

The goal of the update was to create a refreshed, functional, and flexible guide for teachers and students to engage with and find relevance in current issues in neuroscience and society. The update converted the curriculum to a fully online format, provides more robust resources and background content for educators, and incorporates emerging topics in neuroscience and neurotechnology such as brain organoids, cognitive enhancement, and brain-machine interfaces. Any new or newly adapted activities were tested with second-year high school students, and the design, structure, and updated content of the curriculum were reviewed by a Teacher Advisory Board.

The Franklin Institute will disseminate the curriculum through a variety of networks with an emphasis on reaching diverse and underrepresented communities of educators and students. The curriculum is, and will remain, a free resource on the Franklin Institute’s website available to all interested teachers and students.

This grant supports the Dana Education objective to engage K-12 students in learning about neuroscience and its relevance to society through structured education opportunities (formal and non-formal) that capture their interest and inspire continued study.

Learn More About How We Advance Brain Science for a Better Future

To ensure a positive future, we must better connect neuroscience to the needs of society. We must strive to make the field more inclusive and collaborative. By opening the field up to diverse perspectives, working in closer partnership with other disciplines, and deepening our engagement with the general public, neuroscience can contribute to the flourishing of everyone.

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