Ian & Trish

Ian McDermott & Patricia Riddell

Wouldn’t you like to know how to use your brain more effectively?

Neuroscience is generating new insights. We, Ian McDermott, Director of Training for ITS & Professor Patricia Riddell, Professor of Applied Neuroscience have come together to share their practical applications. Our experience combines Patricia’s in teaching and researching psychology and neuroscience with Ian’s in delivering real behavioural change for individuals and organisations.

Suddenly, neuroscience seems to have become a hot topic. In newspapers, trade magazines, on television and radio, new insights into the brain and how it drives our behaviour now are appearing regularly. But does understanding how our brain works really help us to perform better? Or is neuroscience just a new way to package up things we already know?

As consultants we advise on how to apply current research so individuals, teams and organizations can be more effective. The question we therefore ask ourselves about any practice is this:

Is this neuro-effective?

We want to share the fruits of this way of thinking. That’s why we have created this blog.

Ian & Patricia

    • Will you remember or will you forget?

      Have you ever discussed a recent event with someone only to be left wondering if you both actually attended the same event? They might remember what everyone was wearing – which you seem to have failed to notice. On the other hand you remember details of conversations which they swear you are making up! Why does this happen?… More

    • Do you want to have more Eureka moments?

      While some new insights evolve out of careful and considered planning, many arrive suddenly from a pure, new inspiration – a Eureka moment! Instantly, you know that the solution will work, and you can start to plan your new approach.
      If you know what is happening in your brain when you produce such inspirational new thoughts, you might just be able to put yourself and your colleagues in the right place and the right state for new insights to happen more often.… More

    • And they think it’s all over?

      “You can’t teach an old dog new tricks”, “it’s all downhill after 30”, “s/he’s over the hill.” These common phrases suggest that our mental faculties peak at a certain age and then we begin to lose them. But is this true, and if it is, what is that certain age?
      Recent research by Joshua Hartshorne and Laura Germine looked at the age at which we show peak mental abilities in detail.… More

    • Are you harnessing the buzz that curiosity can deliver?

      Curiosity killed the cat – so does that mean we shouldn’t be too curious? Is curiosity dangerous? We want to focus on curiosity this time because it’s so important. So what value is there in curiosity? What drives us to be curious? And what is going on in our brains when we are curious?
      Curious to know the answers?… More

    • How rewarding are your rewards?

      Anyone who plays computer games knows how appealing it is when you, unexpectedly, hit a high score – especially if you are competing against friends and have scored higher than someone who typically beats you. But what happens when you feel that you should have scored well and didn’t? The brain really does not like it when you expect a reward and it does not happen!… More



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