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Working memory training shows immediate and long-term effects on cognitive performance in children.

Pugin F, Metz AJ, Stauffer M, Wolf M, Jenni OG, Huber R - F1000Res (2014)

Bottom Line: Significant differences in immediate (after 3 weeks of training) and long-term effects (after 2-6 months) in an auditory n-back task were observed compared to controls (2.5 fold immediate and 4.7 fold long-term increase in the training group compared to the controls).Other cognitive functions (matrices test and Stroop task) did not change when comparing the training group to the control group.The sustained performance improvement several months after the training supports the effectiveness of the training.

View Article: PubMed Central - PubMed

Affiliation: Child Development Center, University Children's Hospital Zurich, Zurich, 8032, Switzerland ; Zurich Center for Integrative Human Physiology (ZIHP), University of Zurich, Zurich, 8057, Switzerland.

ABSTRACT
Working memory is important for mental reasoning and learning processes. Several studies in adults and school-age children have shown performance improvement in cognitive tests after working memory training. Our aim was to examine not only immediate but also long-term effects of intensive working memory training on cognitive performance tests in children. Fourteen healthy male subjects between 10 and 16 years trained a visuospatial n-back task over 3 weeks (30 min daily), while 15 individuals of the same age range served as a passive control group. Significant differences in immediate (after 3 weeks of training) and long-term effects (after 2-6 months) in an auditory n-back task were observed compared to controls (2.5 fold immediate and 4.7 fold long-term increase in the training group compared to the controls). The improvement was more pronounced in subjects who improved their performance during the training. Other cognitive functions (matrices test and Stroop task) did not change when comparing the training group to the control group. We conclude that visuospatial working memory training in children boosts performance in similar memory tasks such as the auditory n-back task. The sustained performance improvement several months after the training supports the effectiveness of the training.

No MeSH data available.


Related in: MedlinePlus

Timeline of the experiment and study procedure.Cognitive testing included two working memory tasks (auditory n-back and letter-number sequencing), a fluid intelligence task [matrix reasoning task, TONI-IV (Test of Non-verbal Intelligence Version IV)], two cognitive control tasks (Stroop and Flanker task), two processing speed tasks (symbol search and digit-symbol substitution task) and a short-term memory task (number-span task). In addition, subjective motivation and concentration were measured on a scale from 1 (minimal) to 10 (maximal).
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f1: Timeline of the experiment and study procedure.Cognitive testing included two working memory tasks (auditory n-back and letter-number sequencing), a fluid intelligence task [matrix reasoning task, TONI-IV (Test of Non-verbal Intelligence Version IV)], two cognitive control tasks (Stroop and Flanker task), two processing speed tasks (symbol search and digit-symbol substitution task) and a short-term memory task (number-span task). In addition, subjective motivation and concentration were measured on a scale from 1 (minimal) to 10 (maximal).

Mentions: We assessed the cognitive performance before (PRE) and after 3 weeks (POST) of training. In addition, all subjects were asked to participate in a third session after a minimum of 2 months (FOLLOW-UP = FU,Figure 1). In one subject (control subject, code 36), POST took place 1 week later due to sickness on the planned test date.


Working memory training shows immediate and long-term effects on cognitive performance in children.

Pugin F, Metz AJ, Stauffer M, Wolf M, Jenni OG, Huber R - F1000Res (2014)

Timeline of the experiment and study procedure.Cognitive testing included two working memory tasks (auditory n-back and letter-number sequencing), a fluid intelligence task [matrix reasoning task, TONI-IV (Test of Non-verbal Intelligence Version IV)], two cognitive control tasks (Stroop and Flanker task), two processing speed tasks (symbol search and digit-symbol substitution task) and a short-term memory task (number-span task). In addition, subjective motivation and concentration were measured on a scale from 1 (minimal) to 10 (maximal).
© Copyright Policy - open-access
Related In: Results  -  Collection

License 1 - License 2
Show All Figures
getmorefigures.php?uid=PMC4309169&req=5

f1: Timeline of the experiment and study procedure.Cognitive testing included two working memory tasks (auditory n-back and letter-number sequencing), a fluid intelligence task [matrix reasoning task, TONI-IV (Test of Non-verbal Intelligence Version IV)], two cognitive control tasks (Stroop and Flanker task), two processing speed tasks (symbol search and digit-symbol substitution task) and a short-term memory task (number-span task). In addition, subjective motivation and concentration were measured on a scale from 1 (minimal) to 10 (maximal).
Mentions: We assessed the cognitive performance before (PRE) and after 3 weeks (POST) of training. In addition, all subjects were asked to participate in a third session after a minimum of 2 months (FOLLOW-UP = FU,Figure 1). In one subject (control subject, code 36), POST took place 1 week later due to sickness on the planned test date.

Bottom Line: Significant differences in immediate (after 3 weeks of training) and long-term effects (after 2-6 months) in an auditory n-back task were observed compared to controls (2.5 fold immediate and 4.7 fold long-term increase in the training group compared to the controls).Other cognitive functions (matrices test and Stroop task) did not change when comparing the training group to the control group.The sustained performance improvement several months after the training supports the effectiveness of the training.

View Article: PubMed Central - PubMed

Affiliation: Child Development Center, University Children's Hospital Zurich, Zurich, 8032, Switzerland ; Zurich Center for Integrative Human Physiology (ZIHP), University of Zurich, Zurich, 8057, Switzerland.

ABSTRACT
Working memory is important for mental reasoning and learning processes. Several studies in adults and school-age children have shown performance improvement in cognitive tests after working memory training. Our aim was to examine not only immediate but also long-term effects of intensive working memory training on cognitive performance tests in children. Fourteen healthy male subjects between 10 and 16 years trained a visuospatial n-back task over 3 weeks (30 min daily), while 15 individuals of the same age range served as a passive control group. Significant differences in immediate (after 3 weeks of training) and long-term effects (after 2-6 months) in an auditory n-back task were observed compared to controls (2.5 fold immediate and 4.7 fold long-term increase in the training group compared to the controls). The improvement was more pronounced in subjects who improved their performance during the training. Other cognitive functions (matrices test and Stroop task) did not change when comparing the training group to the control group. We conclude that visuospatial working memory training in children boosts performance in similar memory tasks such as the auditory n-back task. The sustained performance improvement several months after the training supports the effectiveness of the training.

No MeSH data available.


Related in: MedlinePlus