The Effectiveness of Working Memory Training for Children Wi
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Subgroups of children may benefit more from working memory training than others. In this study, researchers aimed to examine whether response to the Cogmed Working Memory Training program differed for children with low IQ and elevated attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder, emotional and behavioral symptoms, special health care needs, or by sex.

They used data from the Memory Maestros trial, a population-based randomized controlled trial of the Cogmed program delivered at school (n = 226) compared to usual teaching (n = 226) in grade 1 children (mean age 6.9 years) with low working memory. Cogmed comprises 20 to 25 sessions of 45-minute duration over 5 to 7 weeks. Children completed subtests from the Automated Working Memory Assessment to measure change in working memory from baseline to 6 months postrandomization.

After training, improved working memory standard scores (more than 1 SD) from baseline to 6 months were observed for approximately one-third of the children, with more than half maintaining stable scores (within 1 SD). However, similar outcomes were observed for children receiving usual teaching. Differential effect of Cogmed versus usual teaching was evident for children with elevated hyperactivity and/or inattention, who were less likely to show improved visuospatial working memory, but not for other subgroups studied.

Children with elevated hyperactivity and/or inattention were less likely to show clinically meaningful improvement after Cogmed; however, differential effects were not evident for children with low IQ and elevated emotional and behavioral symptoms, special health care needs, or by sex. More research is needed to determine if training can improve working memory and, if so, for whom.

Source: https://pediatrics.aappublications.org/content/early/2020/11/04/peds.2019-4028?rss=1
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