Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy


College of Education and International Services


Curriculum and Instruction PhD

First Advisor

Elvin Gabriel

Second Advisor

Lee Davidson

Third Advisor

Tevni Grajales



With the introduction of a national curriculum, content standards, and federally mandated assessment; involuntarily teachers have adopted test-based teaching approaches in the classroom. Concurrently, researchers are celebrating brain-based learning because of breakthroughs in neuroscience and cognitive psychology and are promoting it as a watershed teaching opportunity. This has created a gap between research and practice, meaning that teachers’ ability to implement brain-based learning has been affected negatively.


In a correlational design, a non-experimental quantitative study was conducted to examine a sample (N = 422) of teachers from K-12 schools within the United States public school system. The study adopted the analytical tool, Multiple Linear Regression, to analyze the null hypothesis that public-school teachers' gender, years of teaching experience, knowledge about brain-based learning, and perceptions of brain-based learning are not significant predictors of their implementation of brain-based learning practices in K-12 classrooms.


The results showed that the prediction model was statistically significant, F (4, 417) = 258.569, p �� .001, and accounted for 71% of the variance of implementation of brain-based learning practices (R2 = .713, Adjusted R2 = .710). Implementation of brainbased learning practices was found to be significantly predicted by perception (β = .541, t = 10.623, sig. = .000) and by knowledge (β = .337, t = 6.586, sig. = .000), with perception predicting K-12 teachers’ implementation of brain-based learning practices in classroom 1.6 times more than knowledge. However, the results show that years of teaching experience and gender were not significant predictors of K-12 teachers’ implementation of brain-based learning practices in the classroom.


From this evidence, it was concluded that, in general, K-12 teachers will be more willing to implement brain-based learning practices in the classroom provided their perceptions and knowledge about it are improved. Another conclusion is that improving teachers’ perceptions and knowledge about brain-based learning, as opposed to emphasizing federally mandated test scores, are current motivating factors for improvements in teaching. Thus, in order to revamp teaching within K-12 public schools, reformers should seek to improve teachers’ perceptions and knowledge as necessary components of the implementation of brain-based learning processes with primary emphasis on teachers’ perception of brain-based learning practices.

Subject Area

Elementary school teachers; Public schools; Teaching, Learning; Brain-based learning