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  • Why are executive functions important? How does Work Memory Training affect them?

    Presenter: Peter C. Entwistle, PhD

    One of the challenges of understanding the effects of Working Memory Training is grasping what might be considered the mechanism of change in those who complete the program. Working memory is the target of the program and certainly is considered one mechanism of change. However with some consistency other ‘near transfer’ effects, particularly in what are categorized as executive functions (EF) have been found to have improved in peer reviewed published studies of Cogmed.

    The conceptualization of EF will be considered in this webinar as well as a number of Cogmed-specific studies.

    An early study by Beck, et al. 2010 of school-aged children with ADHD found improved EF. Yet, improvements in EF have been found with increasing regularity in more recent studies across a range of ages and presenting problems. Improved EF among groups of school-aged ADHD children and some with learning concerns has been found in recently published studies (Roording-Ragetlie, et al., 2016; Bigorra, et al., 2016; van der Donk., et al., 2016). Au, et al., 2014 found an improvement in organizing thoughts among school-aged children who had Fragile X syndrome. Foy and Mann, 2014 found that preschoolers from economically disadvantaged communities who completed Cogmed improved in executive control. Hyer, et al., 2016 found a lack of declining executive functioning among older adults with mild cognitive impairment as measured by self report on the Functional Activities Questionnaire (FAQ) whereas the control group continued to decline in this area.

    This is an area in which the accumulation of empirical data is approaching our criteria to result in including it on our “Claims and Evidence” document. You can download that document here: http://www.cogmed.com/research

    Date: Jun 14, 2016 - Time: 02:00 PM EDT

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