Jun 202012

Working Memory Training: Studies Dispute Benefits of Brain Training

Working Memory Training: By Sarah D. Sparks, Published Online: June 12, 2012

Published in Print: June 13, 2012, as Brain Training Draws Questions About Benefits

Working Memory Training: Premium article access courtesy of Edweek.org.

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Working Memory Training:  While programs to improve students’ working memory are among the hottest new education interventions, new studies are calling into question whether exercises to improve this foundational skill can actually translate into greater intelligence, problem-solving ability, or academic achievement.

Working memory is the system the mind uses to hold information during decision making and analysis. As much as halfRequires Adobe Acrobat Reader of the variation in individual intelligence can be explained by differences in working-memory capacity, research shows. Working memory has come to be considered by researchers and educators as a key leverage point in boosting brainpower overall—and programs designed to strengthen it are already finding their way into some schools and homes.

But a systematic review of 23 studiesRequires Adobe Acrobat Reader on working-memory training programs, published online last month by the journal Developmental Psychology, found such training produced few long-term benefits to working-memory skills and no improvements to other cognitive skills like verbal ability, attention, word decoding, or arithmetic.

And a randomized, controlled study to be published online next week in the Journal of Experimental Psychology: General, found that improving on a key task used in working-memory training did not lead to improvements on any of a battery of 17 cognitive-ability measures, including problem-solving intelligence, multitasking, and perception speed.

Working Memory Training



TomMcDonald’s Comments:

12:37 PM on June 20, 2012

Thanks for this great article.

This again reinforces my position to follow the solid, undisputed, learning research.

Another example where the research does not solidly validate advanced individual learning outcomes is teaching to individual learning styles

No one seems to argue with the proven success of differentiated learning, over time with differentiated reinforcement over time.

It too late for trial and error in learning.

We need to focus on the research proven learning theory and market proven, learning technology, that integrates proven learning theory and provides documentation of that proven learning methodology along with market proof of learning success.




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