Priming – Getting the Brain Ready to Learn (reposted)

There are many ways to introduce learners to training concepts before the actual physical or virtual class begins. I’m reposting this blog because I think it’s a great reminder about how to do just that.



“Priming” is the term brain scientists give to a concept that is really important for human learning.  Neuroscientific studies have shown that the human brain will accept new information more readily when it has been “primed” beforehand, that is, when it has been introduced to some of the information in informal, non-threatening ways before the more formal instruction takes place. This means that trainers need to offer learners ways to explore content before the actual class or training occurs.

These priming activities can include:

1. Send out an email or creating a blog post with “Warm-Ups” (see examples on this previous blog post);

2. Have learners explore websites, videos, or other Internet sources that have to do with the topic;

3. Suggest that learners interview colleagues who are familiar with the topic or that they read information you have posted before the class or training begins.

Will learners do these optional activities? Some will; some won’t. But even if they don’t, their brain will still have been “primed” to pay attention to some topic-related information before the class or training occurs. Furthermore, during the class, learners will feel that the new information is familiar to them and they will “buy-in” (i.e. accept it and use it) more readily. An added bonus: Priming creates a feeling of engagement and community which, in turns, lessens resistance, especially when the training is a mandatory one.


If you really really like knowing the “cognitive neuroscience” behind brain-based presenting and training, consider attending my 2-day  “Training from the BACK of the Room” class – the only public TBR class that I will be facilitating for Spring/Summer 2018. The class will be held in Minneapolis MN on April 12th – 13th 2018. Click HERE for details and registration information (there are still seats left). Click HERE for a calendar of all TBR classes for 2017 – 2018 (classes are being added monthly so check back).

I will also be facilitating the 1-day Trainer Certification Course on April 15th 2018 in Minneapolis.  This 1-day Cert Course will give you everything you need to be able to present the “official” 2-day TBR class for your own clients, customers, companies, and educational institutions. (Note: You must have attended a 2-day TBR class in order to attend the 1-day Trainer Certification Course.)

As of now, the 1-day Cert Course on April 15th 2018 is sold out, but there is a wait-list forming and, if there are enough people who are interested, the sponsoring company (The Braintrust Consulting Group) may open up another Cert Course day. We should know by the end of December 2017 whether we have enough interested people to consider doing this.

Click HERE for more information and registration/sign-up for the wait-list for the April 15th Trainer Certification Course.

Don’t forget to check out the free give-aways on my website’s  “What’s New?” page while you’re here 🙂 And please pass this information along to anyone who is interested in exciting, unforgettable, learner-centered, brain-based instruction.