We gather the best information on neurodiversity globally available and rewrite this into online courses.
We experience a painfull lack of knowledge on neurodiversity and want to change this (see Why?). Therefore we form a group of allied forces: ”patient” organisations, interest groups and experiencial experts, combined with other academic key figures.
To contributing allies the trial versions of the courses are available for free. After this first feedback round, the courses become available on this site. Allied organisations could offer a discount to their own members.
The paradigm shift from normative to neurodiversity gives brain research a new foundation. In the old normative paradigm we compaired groups of people statistically looking for deviations from the norm. Neurodiversity is the opposite of normative science. It is intrinsic: from within. We gather information from the inside out and ‘bottum up”, instead of ”top down”.
The old DSM behavioural categories caused internal discussions among researchers and professionals (margins of categories / is someting a disorder or not / healing vs improving). Measurable functional profiles put an end to this self legitimazation and refocuses on the brain itself.
The new paradigm of neurodiversity makes cooperation between different disciplines easier through common intrinsic and functional themes. The medical field, pedagogy, genetics and physiology all have their own jargon and perpective. It is our goal to add key articles from each discipline to our courses. – If multidisciplinary teams take our course, they are at the same page from the getgo -.
Time: Neurodiversity focusses on brain development throughout life, not only during a moment of illness or MRI scan.
Context: a brain develops only within a group of others. A contextual approach is essential.
Functional tests instead of behavioural checklists
Neurodiverse research is concerned with intrinsic and functionally measurable themes:
- Systemizing vs empathizing, cognitive vs emotional empathy
- Flow vs procedural concentration
- Conceptual vs lineair thinking
- Filtering / sensory profiles
- Executive functions
How do they impact brain development and neurocircuitry?
What is the influence of neglect or trauma on these themes?
Qualitative approach versus statistics and MRI
The neurodivers approach restores the connection with fundamental brain theory by beeing based on actual life experience of people instead of just randomly trying to find statistical correlations in patientdatabases. Through a reconnection with fundamental theory, more causal relationships are found. And this knowledge is more applicable to people themselves.
This profound new perspective causes a paradigm shift in neuroscience in all its disciplines. It looks for a different type of relation, uses different research methods and investigates functional themes in an intrinsic and qualitative way.
The connection between developmental stages and biology was described by Kandel in 1998. We combine recent knowledge about plasticity, experiencial expertise and systematic methods of ”self-reported neuropathways” and we map neuro-tree structures.
Using atypical brains in neuroscience
The exception, the atypical brain, shows us where the neuropathways cross and where the windows of opportunity are during child development. When do neurocircuits connect and when do they take off at their own specialised path? By studiying neurodiverse brains we learn also about the typical brain. And we take neuroscience to a next level. With a new functional thematic approach we can zoom in on brainarchitecture and use atypical brain circuits to gain knowledge on how brain wiring is made. What are crucial periods for certain connections? When and how can we influence the building of these connections..
Link to a longer tekst on paradigm shift from normative neuroscience to neurodiversity: