Number of Events Organized During Brain Awareness Week:
Type of Events Held:
- Lecture/ Briefing
- Press Briefing
- Other: Class
- General Public
- Other: Open to public
- Other: but mostly retirees
Approximate Number of People Reached:
25 in one, and 50 in the other
Details of Major Brain Awareness Week Events/Activities:
The courses were titled "The Brain for not-so-dummies"; one went for 10 weeks, the other for 6 weeks, both overlapped Brain Awareness Week. The objectives were to impart basic understanding of brain anatomy, function, diseases, treatments, and fallabiities (e.g., illusions, placebo effect, logical fallacies). Reviews for both courses were almost unanimously highly favorable. I believe I definitely did achieve my goals on the basis of the questions during lectures from participants, the written feedback from participants at the end of the courses, and invitations to present again next year from participants as well as both OLLI branches.
Event Planning & Publicity
Publicity Methods Used:
Other Publicity Methods:
The Osher Lifelong Learning Institutes provided programs, flyers, emails etc. to promote this among other courses.
Which of These Publicity Methods Was The Most Successful?
Of the Dana Foundation publications/resources distributed at your event(s), if any, please indicate the three most popular. Please choose up to three. If "other," please indicate below:
- Q&A: Answering Your Questions About Brain Research
- BAW Pencils and Erasers
What downloadable materials from the Foundation did you use for your events?
- Puzzles: Adult/high school
What other downloadable materials would you like the Foundation to provide?
Other Downloadable Materials:
- How to participate in clinical trials; list of good sources of information about the brain
Which BAW graphic materials did you use in publicizing your events?
- BAW Logos
- BAW Bookmarks
Feedback & Keys to Success
How do you feel BAW participation benefited your organization and the local community?
The fact that there is a "Brain Awareness Week" helps spur interest in the brain; the pencil and brain erasers actually do help draw people in to thinking about the brain. As a result of presenting my courses, I have been able to address several participants misconceptions about the brain and about brain research, I have become aware of additional brain research efforts in my area, and I have been asked to present follow-up courses.
Please share any suggestions or lessons learned that may help others plan future events:
Because there is so much interest in the brain, so many areas of research, and so much misunderstandiing about the brain, presenters would benefit from making very clear the focus and limitations of their presentations and knowledge. It is also helpful to know of additional information sources to which to direct questioners. One should also be prepared to be surprized by the audiences' knowledge, particularly that based on a very recent publication in a pupular source.
Did/do you like our Facebook page?
Quotable comments which capture successful aspects of your event(s):
"Our brains are all alike, but we all different." "Brain disorders, like allergies or cancer, are not due to lack of character or will-power." "There is still so much we do not understand, or possibly misunderstand, about the brain; but in science, every revision of our knowledge is a victory." "Good science (e.g., double-blinded) is the best way to advance understanding the brain, and doing good science is hard." "Our reality is a construct of a fallible brain"