Cognitive Scientist, Educator, Author

Dr. Portnoy is a cognitive scientist working to translate the science of learning into powerful and intentionally crafted experiences tailored to each unique learning community.

Drawing from a deep knowledge of cognition and instruction, Portnoy works with educational stakeholders from students and policy makers to educators and curriculum developers to transform the nature of today's classrooms and the lives of tomorrow's citizens.

Using the best of cognitive science we will truly level up learning.

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100 trillion

the number of connections between neurons in the human brain


the number of items (plus or minus two) that can be held in short-term memory


an optimal number of months to distribute learning for long term retention

“Research is formalized curiosity. It is poking and prying with a purpose.”

— Zora Neale Hurston

Writing & Research

The science of learning provides a foundation for how to design the classrooms of the future beginning today.

Portnoy writes and researches about learning science across a broad range of publications to meet each educational stakeholder. From from articles in peer-review journals to widely read publications such as EdSurge and Getting Smart, to ASCD and Digital Culturist.

Supporting each of our children in becoming the very best versions of themselves requires the support of parents, teachers, schools, policy makers, and communities.

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Workshops, Professional Development, Consulting

Are you seeking an experienced educator, facilitator, and researcher to facilitate learning or consult on projects for your district? I specialize in connecting the diverse contexts for learning with the cognitive processes that mediate successful knowledge acquisition. 

Take a look at a few of the many learning experiences I've tailored to the unique learning environments across the country to support communities in thinking critically and creatively about the learning process:

  • Designed to Learn: Design thinking to solve real-world problems with purpose and passion,

  • Designed for Good: Designing solutions to local and global issues of sustainability through the lens design thinking and a focus on the UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDG's),

  • From Paper to Plan: Co-creating impactful and human-centered experiential learning through games,

  • Measuring What Matters: Developing qualitatively rich assessment systems as dynamic as each individual, 

  • Bugatti and the Brain: Unpacking the science of learning to design, develop, and implement powerful learning

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A century of research on how we learn is at your fingertips. Let's work together to design, develop, implement, and evaluate impactful learning experiences that will ignite the imagination and creativity of your learners.

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