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Neurocognitive Prerequisistes for Learning

Research group The research environment has its base in cognitive neuroscience, memory and learning, and typical/atypical development. Activities in NFL are aimed at interdisciplinary/applied research with relevance for the schools educational mission and the generation of knowledge within the psychology of learning and educational science.

The NFL research environment (2022-2025) is supported by Umeå School of Education and the Department of Psychology, Umeå University.

One of the aims in NFL is to work for the establishment and conduction of interdisciplinary research of relevance for the educational mission of schools. Goals are to identify neurocognitive factors that affect learning and develop and evaluate the effectiveness of learning interventions. The generated knowledge is expected to contribute to the construction of optimized pedagogical learning methods that strengthen individual learning. An ambition within NFL is to increase interaction between researchers and educational practitioners to best generate research outcomes of direct relevance for educational stakeholders.

Description of the research environment

NFL is based at the Department of Psychology, Umeå University and its activities are interdisciplinary. The research conducted are both basic science and applied in classroom settings. Research within NFL is focused on memory, learning and how children of various ages learn. Researcher within NFL work with identification and mapping of cognitive prerequisites for memory and learning within an educational framework and how these relate to different learning methods. The research is conducted in collaboration with schools and through the use of brain imaging technique at the Umeå center for Functional Brain Imaging - UFBI

We are interested in how individual variations in cognitive abilities (e.g. working memory, executive functions, intelligence) affect the outcomes of learning interventions, in how motivation to learn and solve problems affect memory and how the brain works under these conditions. A special interest lies within identification, development, implementation and evaluation of learning methods and strategies that can be of specific relevance for children who are at risk for not meeting educational goals or children with developmental delay/deviation. The aim is to find the most beneficial methods that support and strengthen the learning of children and youth.

We aim to increase collaboration both within the academia and with families, schools and other educational stakeholders with an interest for neurocognitive prerequisites for learning. A cornerstone with NFL is applied research with focus on identification of different prerequisites for learning and the development and evaluation of learning interventions. We welcome collaboration with a variety of stakeholders within society.

Do you find NFL interesting? Please contact us!


Anna-Maria Johansson
Associate professor


Participating departments and units at Umeå University

Department of Psychology, Umeå center for Functional Brain Imaging
Latest update: 2022-04-28