Effectiveness of Computerized Working Memory Training in Children with Traumatic Brain Injuries
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A traumatic brain injury (TBI) is statistically the leading cause of both disability and death in young adults. Approximately 1.6 million individuals are diagnosed with a TBI in the United States each year. There may be a higher success rate regarding rehabilitation among younger patients with a TBI. According to an experiment by Katz & Alexander (1994), participants under the age of 40 had a higher success rate in rehabilitation than did those participants over the age of 40. Because of the success of recovery in younger-aged participants, the proposed study will focus solely on children with mild to moderate TBIs, as these conditions have the best ability to improve through rehabilitation. The Importance of Working Memory Functional magnetic resonance imaging verifies that working memory (WM) is damaged when an individual acquires a TBI (Christodoulou et al., 2001; Kumar, Rao, Chandramouli, & Pillai, 2009). Findings in adult participants reveal that training WM in individuals with a TBI has been shown to improve WM and overall brain functioning (Bueschkuehl & Jaeggi, 2010). This specific training is called cognition-based training. Transfer Effects in Working Memory Cognition-based training through working memory tasks is also shown to improve fluid intelligence in both adults and children (Jaeggi, Buschkuehl, Jonides, & Perrig,2008). Robomemo, a popuarl computerized cognition-based training program, has been shown to be effective in adults. Attention and Working Memory Training Because of the damage to both attention and WM children face in a TBI, both topics should be addressed when assessing the effectiveness of computerized training tasks.