Neuromyths among Polish Teachers – Research Results and Practical Implications

Małgorzata Chojak, Ela Luria, Maya Shalom


The article presents the results of research conducted among Polish teachers. Their aim was to check the prevalence of neuromyths in schools and kindergartens, and to identify predictors of both belief in neuromyths and the level of knowledge about the structure and functioning of the brain. The obtained results partially confirmed the reports from international studies. Neuromyths turned out to be very popular among Polish teachers, even despite the high level of basic knowledge in the field of neurobiology. The research also revealed a number of factors that determine the level of the above-mentioned knowledge. The influence of age, gender, seniority, workplace, interest in training in neuroeducation, earlier access to knowledge in the field of neurobiology or the use of neuromyths-based work methods in educational practice has not been confirmed.


neuromyth; teacher; brain; neurofact; education

Full Text:



Alferink L.A., Farmer-Dougan V. (2010). Brain-(not) Based Education: Dangers of Misunderstanding and Misapplication of Neuroscience Research. Exceptionality, 18(1), pp. 42–52. DOI:

Ansari D., Coch D. (2006). Bridges over Troubled Waters: Education and Cognitive Neuroscience. Trends in Cognitive Sciences, 10(4), pp. 146–151. DOI:

Bartoszeck A.B., Bartoszeck F.K. (2012). How In-Service Teachers Perceive Neuroscience as Connected to Education: An Exploratory Study. European Journal of Educational Research, 1(4), pp. 301–319. DOI:

Beck D.M. (2010). Th Appeal of the Brain in the Popular Press. Perspectives on Psychological Science, 5(6), pp. 762–766. DOI:

Bellert A., Graham L. (2013). Reading Comprehension Diffilties Experienced by Students with Learning Disabilities. Australian Journal of Learning Disabilities, 10(2), pp. 71–78. DOI:

Busso D.S., Pollack C. (2015). No Brain Lef Behind: Consequences of Neuroscience Discourse for Education. Learning Media and Technology, 40(2), pp. 168–186. DOI:

Chojak M. (2019). Neuropedagogika, neuroedukacja i neurodydaktyka – fakty i mity. Warszawa: Difin.

Crockard A. (1996). Confessions of a Brain Surgeon. New Scientist, 2061(68).

Dekker S., Lee N.C., Howard-Jones P., Jolles J. (2012). Neuromyths in Education: Prevalence and Predictors of Misconceptions among Teachers. Frontiers in Psychology, 3(429). DOI:

Deligiannidi K., Howard-Jones P. (2015). Th Neuroscience Literacy of Teachers in Greece. Procedia – Social and Behavioral Sciences, 174, pp. 3909–3915. DOI:

Dommett E.J., Devonshire I.M., Plateau C.R., Westwell M.S., Greenfild S.A. (2011). From Scientific Theory to Classroom Practice. Neuroscientist, 17(4), pp. 382–388. DOI:

Dubinsky J.M., Roehrig G., Varma S. (2013). Infusing Neuroscience into Teacher Professional Development. Educational Researcher, 42(6), pp. 317–329. DOI:

Ferrero M., Garaizar P., Vadillo M.A. (2016). Neuromyths in Education: Prevalence among Spanish Teachers and an Exploration of Cross-Cultural Variation. Frontiers in Human Neuroscience, 10(496). DOI:

Geake J. (2008). Neuromythologies in Education. Educational Researcher, 50(2), pp. 123–133. DOI:

Gleichgerrcht E., Lira Luttges B., Salvarezza F., Campos A.L. (2015). Educational Neuromyths among Teachers in Latin America. Mind, Brain, and Education, 9(3), pp. 170–178. DOI:

Goswami U. (2004). Neuroscience and Education. British Journal of Educational Psychology, 74(1), pp. 1–14. DOI:

Goswami U. (2006). Neuroscience and Education: From Research to Practice? Nature Reviews Neuroscience, 7, pp. 406–413. DOI:

Guzzetti B.J., Snyder T.E., Glass G.V., Gamas W.S. (1993). Promoting Conceptual Change in Science: A Comparative Meta-Analysis of Instructional Interventions from Reading Education and Science Education. Reading Research Quarterly, 28(2), pp. 117–159. DOI: https://doi.


Herculano-Houzel S. (2002). Do You Know Your Brain? A Survey on Public Neuroscience Literacy at the Closing of the Decade of the Brain. Neuroscientist, 8(2), pp. 98–110. DOI:

Hermida M.J., Segretin M.S, Soni García A., Lipina S.J. (2016). Conceptions and Misconceptions about Neuroscience in Preschool Teachers: A Study from Argentina. Educational Research, 58(4), pp. 457–472. DOI:

Horvath J.C., Donoghue G.M., Horton A.J., Lodge J.M., Hattie J.A.C. (2018). On the Irrelevance of Neuromyths to Teacher Effectiveness: Comparing Neuro-Literacy Levels Amongst Award-Winning and Non-award Winning Teachers. Frontiers in Psychology, 9(1666). DOI:

Howard-Jones P.A. (2014). Neuroscience and Education: Myths and Messages. Nature Reviews Neuroscience, 15(12), pp. 817–824. DOI:

Howard-Jones P.A., Franey L., Mashmoushi R., Liao, Y.C. (2009). Th Neuroscience Literacy of Trainee Teachers. British Educational Research Association Annual Conference. Manchester: University of Manchester.

Hruby G.G. (2012). Three Requirements for Justifying an Educational Neuroscience. British Journal of Educational Psychology, 82(1), pp. 1–23. DOI:

Jolles J., de Groot R.H.M., van Benthem J.F.A.K., Dekkers H.P.J.M., de Glopper C.M., Uijlings H.B.M. (2006). Brain Lessons: A Contribution to the International Debate on Brain, Learning and Education, Based on the Results of an Invitational Conference Organized by the Netherlands Organization for Scientific Research (NWO). Maastricht: Neuropsych Publishers.

Karakus O., Howard-Jones P., Jay T. (2015). Primary and Secondary School Teachers’ Knowledge and Misconceptions about the Brain in Turkey. Procedia – Social and Behavioral Sciences, 174, pp. 1933–1940. DOI:

Kowalski P., Taylor A.K. (2009). The Effect of Refuting Misconceptions in the Introductory Psychology Class. Teaching of Psychology, 36(3), pp. 153–159. DOI:

Kowalski P., Taylor A.K. (2011). Effectiveness of Refutational Teaching for High-and Low-Achieving Students. Journal of the Scholarship of Teaching and Learning, 11(1), pp. 79–90.

Kruger J., Dunning D. (1999). Unskilled and Unaware of It: How Difficulties in Recognizing One’s Own Incompetence Lead to Inflated Self-Assessments. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 77(6), pp. 1121–1134. DOI:

Lethaby C., Harries P. (2015). Learning Styles and Teacher Training: Are We Perpetuating Neuromyths? ELT Journal, 70(1), pp. 16–27. DOI:

Lilienfeld S.O., Lynn S.J., Ruscio J., Beyerstein B.L. (2011). 50 Great Myths of Popular Psychology: Shattering Widespread Misconceptions about Human Behavior. Chichester: John Wiley and Sons.

Lindell A.K., Kidd E. (2011). Why Right-Brain Teaching is Half-Witted: A Critique of the Misapplication of Neuroscience to Education. Mind, Brain, and Education, 5(3), pp. 121–127. DOI:

Lord S. (2005). Evidence-Based Practice 2 – the New Zealand Experience. London: WCPT keynote.

Macdonald K., Germine L., Anderson A., Christodoulou J., McGrath L.M. (2017). Dispelling the Myth: Training in Education or Neuroscience Decreases but Does Not Eliminate Beliefs in Neuromyths. Frontiers in Psychology, 8(1314). DOI:

McCabe D.P., Castel A.D. (2008). Seeing Is Believing: The Effect of Brain Images on Judgments of Scientific Reasoning. Cognition, 107(1), pp. 343–352. DOI:

Michael R.B., Newman E.J., Vuorre M., Cumming G., Garry M. (2013). On the (Non)persuasive Power of a Brain Image. Psychonomic Bulletin & Review, 20, pp. 720–725. DOI:

Nelson C.A., Bloom F.E. (1997). Child Development and Neuroscience. Child Development, 68(5), pp. 970–987. DOI:

OECD. (2002). Understanding the Brain: Towards a New Learning Science. Paris: OECD Publishing.

Pasquinelli E. (2012). Neuromyths: Why Do They Exist and Persist? Mind, Brain, and Education, 6(2), pp. 89–96. DOI:

Pei X., Howard-Jones P., Zhang S., Liu X., Jin Y. (2015). Teachers’ Understanding about the Brain in East China. Procedia – Social and Behavioral Sciences, 174, pp. 3681–3688. DOI:

Pickering S.J., Howard-Jones P. (2007). Educators’ Views on the Role of Neuroscience in Education: Findings from a Study of UK and International Perspectives. Mind, Brain, and Education, 1(3), pp. 109–113. DOI:

Racine E., Bar-Ilan O., Illes J. (2005). fMRI in the Public Eye. Nature Reviews Neuroscience, 6(2), pp. 159–164. DOI:

Racine E., Waidman S., Rosenberg J., Illes J. (2006). Contemporary Neuroscience in the Media. Social Science & Medicine, 71(4), pp. 725–733. DOI:

Rato J.R., Abreu A.M., Castro-Caldas A. (2013). Neuromyths in Education: What Is Fact and What Is Fiction for Portuguese Teachers? Educational Research, 55(4), pp. 441–453. DOI:

Serpati L., Loughan A.R. (2012). Teacher Perceptions of Neuroeducation: A Mixed Methods Survey of Teachers in the United States. Mind, Brain, and Education, 6(3), pp. 174–176. DOI:

Simmonds A. (2014). How Neuroscience is Affecting Education: Report of Teacher and Parent Surveys. Wellcome Trust.

Sylvan, L.J., Christodoulou, J.A. (2010). Understanding the Role of Neuroscience in Brain Based Products: A Guide for Educators and Consumers. Mind, Brain, and Education, 4(1), pp. 1–7. DOI:

Tardif E., Doudin P.A., Meylan N. (2015). Neuromyths among Teachers and Student Teachers. Mind, Brain, and Education, 9(1), pp. 50–59. DOI:

Wallace M. (1993). Discourse of Derision: Th Role of the Mass Media within the Educational Policy Process. Journal of Education Policy, 8(4), pp. 321–337. DOI:

Weisberg D.S., Keil F.C., Goodstein J., Rawson E., Gray J.R. (2008). Th Seductive Allure of Neuroscience Explanations. Journal of Cognitive Neuroscience, 20(3), pp. 470–477. DOI:

Zambo D., Zambo R. (2009). What Future Teachers Think about Brain Research. Teaching Educational Psychology, 5(2), pp. 39–49.

Zambo D., Zambo R. (2011). Teachers’ Beliefs about Neuroscience and Education. Teaching Educational Psychology, 7(2), pp. 25–41.

Data publikacji: 2021-11-15 21:31:48
Data złożenia artykułu: 2021-04-24 20:50:30


Total abstract view - 1196
Downloads (from 2020-06-17) - PDF - 602



  • There are currently no refbacks.

Copyright (c) 2021

Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License.