The National Science Foundation has awarded $36.5 million to three universities to establish “science of learning” centers around the country.
The three-year grants went to Boston University, Carnegie-Mellon University in Pittsburgh, and the University of Washington in Seattle. The new research centers will serve as hubs for a national research network that draws on neuroscience, cognitive psychology, computer technology, mathematics, education, and other disciplines to make new discoveries about how people learn.
The grants, announced this month, are part of an ambitious initiative on learning science unveiled by the independent federal agency in May of last year. In addition to the new research centers, the NSF earlier this year awarded grants for 14 smaller “catalyst” projects working on exploratory research aimed at fostering interdisciplinary research on complex learning-science questions.
“These kinds of investments are essential for a fuller understanding of learning,” said Wanda Ward, the acting assistant director of the NSF’s directorate for social, behavioral, and economic science.