Trouble in our consensus about learning: the politics of learning in the contemporary period
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The global learning community, led by researchers in fields such as psychology, sociology and pedagogics, had arrived at a consensus about the social and biological nature of learning until work in epigenetics brought new insights. After a brief overview of learning theories and the role of the environment, recent findings from epigenetics are discussed to consider their effects. A new research agenda is proposed regarding how to best afford each individual child a learning pathway. The practical difficulties of a call to work with the complex interface of individuals social and biological circumstances are acknowledged. Such research could, however, enable a better understanding of the links between nature and nurture and how they, together, impact learning. Such an understanding will better inform educational practices capable of embracing the uniqueness of each child. Although both practically and ethically challenging, we contend that this will ensure quality education for all children.
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