Monday, 15 June 2015 14:20

Huron-Superior Students Boost Their Brain Power

The first study in Canada of BrainWare SAFARI cognitive skills development software has shown dramatic growth in cognitive capacity and in academic achievement for the Grade 3 students who used the program during the 2013-2014 school year.Third grade classes in Huron-Superior Catholic District School Board schools participated in a district pilot of BrainWare SAFARI, a software program that develops students’ cognitive processing skills, such as attention and visual processing, and executive functions such as planning and working memory. Cognitive processing skills are the foundation which makes learning academic skills and subject matter more efficient and more effective.

 

Key Findings from the Study:

-- The cognitive growth of students who used BrainWare SAFARI was significantly greater than for those who did not. Average cognitive growth for all 3rd grade students who used BrainWare in the study was 17 percentile points (composite score) on the Canadian Cognitive Abilities Test (CCAT) in 12 weeks.  These gains are comparable to results of previous studies with the U.S. counterpart of the CCAT.

-- The students who used the program continued to experience growthin their cognitive capacity after using the program, with year-end scores on the CCAT 32 percentile points higher than at the beginning of the year (composite score), resulting in 50% of the students scoring at the 70th percentile or above.

For the students who used BrainWare SAFARI in the fall semester, while there were immediate improvements evident in academic scores, the gains ramped up further at the end of the year.  Reading and Math scores increased 1.4 and 1.6 grade equivalents respectively.

-- The academic growth resulted in average student academic performance moving from below grade-level expectation to above grade-level expectation at the end of the year in both reading and math.

-- Students with accommodations experienced significant increases in cognitive skills following their use of the program.  They finished the year scoring at grade level on academic tests despite starting the year below expectations.

Bill Mansfield, a speech and language pathologist with the school baord directed the study.  Mr. Mansfield commented on the results of the study, saying, "It is very gratifying to see the results of the implementation confirm what we knew could be achieved for our students.  The development of cognitive skills is so fundamental to academic performance and we see the impact in the results of this study on our students' performance in reading and math, as well as their classroom focus."

“BrainWare SAFARI is unique in the way it helps students build their learning capacity in a sustainable way,” said Roger Stark, CEO of The BrainWare Company.  “When students have stronger thinking skills, they have a tremendous advantage both in school and in everyday life.  The teachers, students and staff of the district involved in the study did an outstanding job of implementing the program and the results are a clear demonstration of the impact BrainWare SAFARI has on raising student performance.”

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