The Neuroscience of Learning (2020/2021)

Course code
Name of lecturer
Michele Scandola
Michele Scandola
Number of ECTS credits allocated
Academic sector
Language of instruction
Sem. 1A, Sem. 1B

Lesson timetable

Go to lesson schedule

Learning outcomes

1) Know and understand the theories related to learning and training of individuals in the life cycle. 2) Apply the theories on the functioning of individuals, groups and organizations to the analysis of phenomena of learning and personal and social change. 3) Apply the knowledge of the psychological measurement tools of the individual's assessment to the assessment of the needs for learning, training and development of individuals in the life cycle, groups, organizations and communities. SPECIFIC TRAINING OBJECTIVES The students will acquire: - the core knowledge concerning the neurobiological and cognitive mechanisms underlying the learning processes. - knowledge concerning neuronal plasticity processes, in terms of learning and environmental adaptation. - the necessary the know-how about learning processes that can contribute to the design of learning interventions. - the capability to have a critical and sceptical reading of specialistic and non-specialistic literature concerning the neurobiology of learning processes. - the capability to use psychological tools to evaluate learning processes. - basic competencies for scientific research in learning processes.


ATTENTION: the course will be held online.
Links to the Zoom lessons can be found on the dedicated Moodle platform.
Lessons will be held on the dates and times indicated in the calendar.

1- Short reference to the key concepts of psychobiology essential to understand learning processes:
a) from the neuron to the nervous networks
b) general neuroanatomy
c) neuroanatomy of learning networks
d) neuroanatomy of memory networks

2- Brain plasticity
a) the plasticity behind brain development
b) plasticity independent of external events
c) plasticity dependent on external events

3- learning and brain plasticity

4- developmental and ageing brain plasticity

5- brain plasticity after brain injury

6- the role of emotions in the neurosciences of learning

7 - the resting brain: the importance of default mode in learning and neuroanatomical development

8 - the danger of neuromites

Reference books
Author Title Publisher Year ISBN Note
Michele Scandola Dispense del corso (Edizione 1)  

Assessment methods and criteria

In relation to the situation deriving from the Coronavirus emergency, the examination procedures have been changed, preparing them for electronic appeals, as reported below, in accordance with the instructions of the university.

For the online version, the moodle platform and the Safe Exam Browser will be used. For further information, consult the following page:


Quiz of 20 multiple choice questions on the entire program, via the moodle platform at via Safe Exam Browser (search for "Formazione, Filosofia e Servizio Sociale", "Laurea in Scienze psicologiche per la formazione", and "Neuroscienze dell'apprendimento"). The quiz has 4 choice answers, of which only one is correct. You will have 25 minutes to complete the quiz. Each correct answer will give 1 point, wrong or missing answers 0 points.

On this platform, first connect to the zoom link, to verify identity using a university badge or valid identity document and to receive the teacher's instructions.

Then, if you have answered at least 14 out of 20 questions correctly, you will be asked with open questions on zoom on the same day. If the number of subscribers is more than 15 people, more groups of the same number will be created, which will support the query at different times.


Written exam with 20 multiple choice questions and 4 open-ended questions on the entire program.

If the right answers to the multiple choice questions are less than 14, the open-ended questions will not be evaluated.

An open-ended question on the reading of choice to improve the grade.