People frequently ask us about the benefits that young people get from doing Cogmed Working Memory Training. If we can improve working memory and attention, what will that mean for my son or daughter? Increasingly Cogmed is being seen as a foundation for remediation, as well as a catalyst for learning in general. Because working memory training never happens in a vacuum, it is sometimes difficult to isolate and measure the role that Cogmed plays. One fellow practitioner noted that in his clinical experience with children who have dyslexia, that initial Cogmed training along with an intensive remedial program enabled children to rehabilitate their literacy measurably faster than without initial Cogmed training. Hard research is sure to follow but this will take time.
We have now worked with more than one hundred Cogmed clients, and distinct patterns of benefit have emerged. These are not our observations but those of parents, teachers, and students themselves. Because of the central role working memory and attention play, improvements appear to expand the window of perception. Instead of looking at things in isolation, it is common for many, post training, to see a bigger picture where the details exist in the context of the whole, rather than in isolation. As such, we often hear about improved organization and the desire to be organized. Improved ability to retain and recall information are other benefits that are commonly cited. These can manifest in better reading comprehension and the enjoyment of reading, better access to language, along with easier organization of thoughts and improved writing. Many also speak of new found confidence and reductions in anxiety.
Another colleague who has had the opportunity to work with a large number of students told us that you still need to offer social pragmatics, occupational therapy, speech/language therapy and a structured approach to reading remediation such as Orton Gillingham, but you do Cogmed first and it just makes things easier. Based on our experience we agree.
For more information about Cogmed please contact us.