Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

New research finds working memory is the key to early academic achievement

08.07.2014

Working memory in children is linked strongly to reading and academic achievement, a new study from the University of Luxembourg and partner Universities from Brazil* has shown.

Moreover, this finding holds true regardless of socio-economic status. This suggests that children with learning difficulties might benefit from teaching methods that prevent working memory overload. The study was published recently in the scientific journal “Frontiers in Psychology”.

The study was conducted in Brazil on 106 children between 6 and 8 from a range of social backgrounds, with half living under the official poverty line. Similar studies have been conducted in the English-speaking world, so it was interesting to see that the results were similar in this highly-unequal, Portuguese-speaking society.

The study sought to identify the cognitive skills underpinning learning success. Children were tested for IQ and so-called “executive functions”, a set of cognitive processes that we use to control our thoughts and actions, including how we remember information, control our emotions, pay attention and shift between thoughts.

These results were compared to attainment in reading, spelling, mathematics, language and science. The results show that a child's working memory skills - their ability to hold and work with information in mind - predicted success in all aspects of learning, regardless of IQ.

Moreover, most children identified by their teachers as “poor readers” struggle with their working memory.

“Our findings suggest the importance of early screening and intervention, especially in the context of poverty. At present, poor working memory is rarely identified by teachers,” said project leader Dr. Pascale Engel de Abreu, Associate Professor at the University of Luxembourg “Poor literacy, low academic achievement and living in poverty create a mutually reinforcing cycle.

There is a chance to break this by early identification of children with working memory problems and by helping them to acquire the mental tools which will enable them to learn,” she added.
___
* Universidade Federal da Bahia (UFBA), Universidade Federal de São Paulo (UNIFESP), Universidade de São Paulo (USP)

Weitere Informationen:

http://orbilu.uni.lu/handle/10993/16964 - Link to the scientific article
http://www.uni.lu - homepage of the University of Luxembourg

Britta Schlüter | idw - Informationsdienst Wissenschaft

Further reports about: Children IQ cognitive socio-economic status working memory problems

More articles from Studies and Analyses:

nachricht Is Marriage Good or Bad for the Figure?
29.06.2015 | Max-Planck-Institut für Bildungsforschung

nachricht Fructose produces less rewarding sensations in the brain
25.06.2015 | Universität Basel

All articles from Studies and Analyses >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: Iron: A biological element?

Think of an object made of iron: An I-beam, a car frame, a nail. Now imagine that half of the iron in that object owes its existence to bacteria living two and a half billion years ago.

Think of an object made of iron: An I-beam, a car frame, a nail. Now imagine that half of the iron in that object owes its existence to bacteria living two and...

Im Focus: Thousands of Droplets for Diagnostics

Researchers develop new method enabling DNA molecules to be counted in just 30 minutes

A team of scientists including PhD student Friedrich Schuler from the Laboratory of MEMS Applications at the Department of Microsystems Engineering (IMTEK) of...

Im Focus: Bionic eye clinical trial results show long-term safety, efficacy vision-restoring implant

Patients using Argus II experienced significant improvement in visual function and quality of life

The three-year clinical trial results of the retinal implant popularly known as the "bionic eye," have proven the long-term efficacy, safety and reliability of...

Im Focus: Lasers for Fast Internet in Space – Space Technology from Aachen

On June 23, the second Sentinel mission was launched from the space mission launch center in Kourou. A critical component of Aachen is on board. Researchers at the Fraunhofer Institute for Laser Technology ILT and Tesat-Spacecom have jointly developed the know-how for space-qualified laser components. For the Sentinel mission the diode laser pump module of the Laser Communication Terminal LCT was planned and constructed in Aachen in cooperation with the manufacturer of the LCT, Tesat-Spacecom, and the Ferdinand Braun Institute.

After eight years of preparation, in the early morning of June 23 the time had come: in Kourou in French Guiana, the European Space Agency launched the...

Im Focus: Superslippery islands (but then they get stuck)

A simple reversible process that changes friction in the nanoworld

(Nano)islands that slide freely on a sea of copper, but when they become too large (and too dense) they end up getting stuck: that nicely sums up the system...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

Event News

World Conference on Regenerative Medicine in Leipzig: Last chance to submit abstracts until 2 July

25.06.2015 | Event News

World Conference on Regenerative Medicine: Abstract Submission has been extended to 24 June

16.06.2015 | Event News

MUSE hosting Europe’s largest science communication conference

11.06.2015 | Event News

 
Latest News

Breaking through a double wall with a sledgehammer

29.06.2015 | Life Sciences

Lean but sated: Molecular Switch for a Healthy Metabolism discovered

29.06.2015 | Life Sciences

Spintronics Advance Brings Wafer-Scale Quantum Devices Closer to Reality

29.06.2015 | Physics and Astronomy

VideoLinks
B2B-VideoLinks
More VideoLinks >>>