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Nowadays, there is a great need for schools to be transformed into more innovative learning environments with more innovative approaches to learning and teaching so as students to be allowed to develop their various skills and abilities to their fullest extent. Therefore, we present the role of physical activity and ICT-based interventions for working memory enhancement as a strategic issue for the improvement of students� learning outcomes. According to research findings, multi-component exercise and ICT-based intervention programs can significantly contribute to the improvement of children�s and adolescents� working memory and thus can have a positive effect on children�s and adolescents� learning performance. Finally, this paper could trigger educators and policy-makers towards the ideal planning of innovative multicomponent physical activity and ICT-based intervention programs and their incorporation into the school curriculum aiming at the working memory enhancement in children and adolescents and the improvement of their learning outcomes.
A new decade
for social changes
9 772668 779000
ISSN 2668-7798
Vol. 30, 2022
Working memory interventions via physical activity and
ICTs: Α strategic issue for the improvement of school
students’ learning performance
Effrosyni Angelopoulou1, Athanasios Drigas2
1 2Net Media Lab Mind - Brain R&D ΙΙΤ - N.C.S.R. "Demokritos", Athens, Greece
efrosynagge@yahoo.gr1, dr@iit.demokritos.gr2
Abstract. Nowadays, there is a great need for schools to be transformed into more innovative
learning environments with more innovative approaches to learning and teaching so as students
to be allowed to develop their various skills and abilities to their fullest extent. Therefore, we
present the role of physical activity and ICT-based interventions for working memory
enhancement as a strategic issue for the improvement of students’ learning outcomes. According
to research findings, multi-component exercise and ICT-based intervention programs can
significantly contribute to the improvement of children’s and adolescents’ working memory and
thus can have a positive effect on children’s and adolescents’ learning performance. Finally, this
paper could trigger educators and policy-makers towards the ideal planning of innovative multi-
component physical activity and ICT-based intervention programs and their incorporation into
the school curriculum aiming at the working memory enhancement in children and adolescents
and the improvement of their learning outcomes.
Keywords. working memory interventions, physical activity, ICTs, learning performance,
school students, children, adolescents
1. Introduction
In today's society, the need to transform schools for the participation of young people
becomes imperative. Therefore, schools should promote more innovative approaches to
learning and teaching (Timperley, Kaser, & Halbert, 2014) so that all students’ learning needs
are met (Drigas, Argyri, Vrettaros 2009). One such innovative approach could be the integration
of ICT-based physical activity and working memory interventions into the school curriculum
to enhance students’ working memory and thus improve their learning performance since,
according to Gathercole, Lamont, and Alloway (2006), working memory is linked to academic
Working memory constitutes a brain system responsible for the temporary storage and
manipulation of the information necessary for language comprehension, learning, and
reasoning, which are complex cognitive tasks (Baddeley, 1992; 2010). Chronic aerobic exercise
can enhance children’s working memory capacity (Guiney & Machado, 2013), while highly
intense and structured physical activities are especially relevant for working memory
enhancement in adolescence (Lopéz-Vicente, Garcia-Aymerich, Torrent-Pallicer, Forns,
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Vol. 30, 200-213, April, 2022
ISSN: 2668-7798
Ibarluzea, Lertxundi, Gonzalez, Valera-Gran, Torrent, Dadvand, Vrijheid, & Sunyer, 2017).
Notably, the use of ICTs, such as computer-based tools, mobile training apps, video games
(Pappas, Drigas, Malli, & Kalpidi, 2018, Drigas et all 2004, 2009, 2013 Papoutsi, et all 2018),
and serious games (Chaldogeridis & Tsiatsos, 2020) can significantly contribute to working
memory enhancement.
In the current paper, we focus on the crucial role of physical activity and ICTs in school
students’ working memory and present it as a strategic issue for their learning improvement.
We chose to focus on physical activity and ICT-based interventions for the enhancement of
school students’ working memory because school students’ way and quality of life are affected
by today’s digitalization and sedentary lifestyles, which also have a profound impact on their
learning progress.
More specifically, the rapid development of ICTs has led to computers becoming part
of daily life (Drigas & Ioannidou, 2012, 2013; Player-Koro, 2012) and has pushed ICTs and
computers into classrooms at all educational levels (Player-Koro, 2012, Kefalis & Drigas 2019).
Ιn fact, technologies within the domain of interactive, remote and on line science such as
interactive whiteboards and related applications are extensively adopted in education’s
everyday life (Drigas & Papanastasiou, 2014).
In addition, today’s daily life is characterized by decreased or low physical activity
levels because of the increased use of motorized transport and screens for work, education and
recreation. Research findings indicate that in children and adolescents, physical activity, which
is defined as any bodily movement produced by skeletal muscles that requires energy
expenditure”, can improve mental health and cognitive functions (WHO, 2021), such as
working memory. Physical activity’s positive impact on cognitive functions is based on several
mechanisms, including angiogenesis, oxygen saturation, glucose delivery, cerebral blood flow,
and neurotransmitter levels (Diamond, 2015).
This paper also reflects an effort to raise reader’s awareness of the significance of
children’s and adolescents’ daily physical activity engagement in school environments and
highlights the need for multi-component exercise and ICT-based working memory intervention
programs to be incorporated into the school curriculum targeting the effective enhancement of
working memory in children and adolescents and thus their positive learning outcomes.
2. Working memory in children and adolescents
Working memory is a brain system responsible for the temporary storage and
manipulation of the information necessary for language comprehension, learning, and
reasoning, which are complex cognitive tasks (Baddeley, 1992; 2010). Working memory is
inextricably linked to attention (Angelopoulou, & Drigas, 2021), but is distinguished from
short-term memory, because these two memory systems represent different cognitive functions
(Aben, Stapert & Blokland, 2012). More specifically, short-term memory is responsible for
storing information for a short period of time (e.g., remembering a phone number), while
working memory refers to handling information during a complex cognitive process (e.g.,
remembering numbers while reading a paragraph) (Goldstein, 2011).
Many researchers present working memory as a mental laboratory (Μασούρα, 2010)
that stores and manipulates information for short periods of time (Baddeley, 1986; Μασούρα,
2010; Gathercole & Alloway, 2007). It is also involved in almost every activity of daily life and
is subjected to gradual changes during the period of 5 and 19 years of human development
(Alloway & Alloway, 2013).
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Only a small amount of information can working memory hold either abstract ideas or
objects that can be counted (Cowan, 2014). It has been estimated that adults’ working memory
capacity is in the range of 3 or 4 objects (Cowan, 2001; Luck & Vogel, 1998; see Cowan 2016,
p. 7), while preschoolers and early elementary school children can maintain in their working
memory 2 or 2.5 items (Cowan, Nugent, Elliott, Ponomarev, & Saults, 1999; Cowan, Elliott et
al., 2005; Riggs, McTaggart, Simpson, & Freeman, 2006; Simmering, 2012; see Cowan 2016,
p.7). Working memory capacity increases during infancy but then regresses during
childhood (Cowan 2016). The minimum age at which a reliable measurement of working
memory can be made is 4 years (Alloway, Gathercole, & Kirkwood, 2016). Research has shown
the existence of linear increase in the performance of the phonological loop, central executive,
and visuo-spatial sketchpad from the age of 4 years to adolescence (Gathercole, Pickering,
Ambridge & Wearing, 2004). During adolescence, working memory capacity is close to that of
an adult and more than twice the working memory capacity of a four year old child (Gathercole
et al., 2007).
Older children can hold more bits of information than younger children. More
specifically, the child at the age of 4 years can recall 3 digits in a row, while at the age of 12
years the number of digits doubles and at the age of 16 years the range of digits reaches 7 to 8
digits (Hulme & Mackenzie, 1992, as cited in Dehn, 2008). Research findings suggest that
recall-guided action for single units of spatial information develops until 11 to 12 years, and the
ability to maintain and manipulate multiple spatial units develops until 13 to 15 years. These
findings are related to the maturation of distinct prefrontal regions and the organization of the
prefrontal cortex by level of processing (Luciana, Conklin, Hooper, & Yarger, 2005).
Furthermore, visual working memory ability continues to develop throughout
adolescence. However, it cannot reach the corresponding adult level even at the age of 16. That
indicates the U-shaped developmental row of visual working memory, according to which it
approaches higher performance levels earlier in life. But then it declines during adolescence
and rises again in adulthood (Isbell, Fukuda, Neville, & Vogel, 2015).
3. Working memory and school students’ learning performance
Working memory is closely associated with academic learning (Gathercole, Lamont,
& Alloway, 2006). Learning might be assumed to be the formation of new concepts. These new
concepts occur when existing concepts are joined or bound together. For the various types of
concept formation, then, the cauldron is considered to be working memory, which is linked to
fluid intelligence that is closely related to crystallized intelligence (Cowan, 2014).
Fluid intelligence refers to the ability to reason and to solve new problems
independently of previously acquired knowledge (Carpenter, Just, & Shell, 1990), while
crystallized intelligence refers to the type of intelligence that involves what an individual knows
(Cowan, 2014). Good working memory, then, is critical to learning because a good working
memory assists in problem-solving (hence fluid intelligence); fluid intelligence and working
memory then assist in new learning (hence crystallized intelligence) (Cowan, 2014).
Several studies have shown that the majority of children with poor working memory
are slow to learn in the areas of reading, maths and science, across both primary and secondary
school years (see Gathercole et al., 2006). For children, reading comprehension is a complex
activity and, once basic decoding skills have been sufficiently acquired and automated, it
requires several cognitive processes, one of which is working memory (Carretti, Borella,
Elosúa, Gómez-Veiga, & García-Madruga, 2017).
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Poor phonological working memory (Nicolielo-Carrilho, Crenitte, Lopes-Herrera, &
Hage, 2018) and poor verbal working memory can lead to poor reading performance (Giofrè,
Donolato, & Mammarella, 2018), whereas poor working memory capacity (Mousavi,
Badarudin, & Malt, 2012; Alamolhodaei, 2009; Alloway, 2006; Holmes & Adam, 2006;
Swanson, 2004; Wilson & Swanson, 2001); in fact, poor visuo-spatial working memory can
lead to poor mathematical performance (Giofrè et al., 2018).
Loosli, Buschkuehl, Perrig, and Jaeggi (2012) showed that working memory training
improves school students’ reading abilities, while Söderqvist and Bergman Nutley (2015)
claimed that working memory training can help optimize long term attainments in maths and
reading. According to Carretti et al. (2017), training working memory and its executive
processes during reading comprehension activities is a promising approach to sustaining
reading comprehension. Notably, a study by Alloway, Bibile, and Lau (2013) demonstrated that
computerized working memory training could lead to gains in academic performance.
4. Working memory interventions via physical activity and ICTs
4.1. The benefits of physical activity for children’s and adolescents’ working
Physical activity is defined as any bodily movement produced by skeletal muscles that
requires energy expenditure, which can be measured in kilocalories” (Caspersen, Powell, &
Christenson, 1985). In the light of this definition, physical activity can be linked to organized
physical activities (e.g., handball and football) and transportation (e.g., cycling and walking).
Also, physical activity can be considered as part of domestic tasks, such as cleaning and
carrying (Lahti, 2019).
Furthermore, physical activity can be subdivided into moderate (Caspersen et al.,
1985), such as walking (Dencker, Thorsson, Karlsson, Lindén, Eiberg, Wollmer, & Andersen,
2006) and vigorous intensity (Caspersen et al., 1985), such as running (Dencker et al., 2006),
and can be quantified using metabolic equivalents (METs) (Jetté, Sidney, & Blümchen, 1990).
1 MET is defined as the amount of oxygen consumed at rest, when sitting quietly, and equals
to approximately 3.5 ml 02/kg/min (1.2 kcal/min for a 70-kg person) (Jetté et al., 1990). Two
studies conducted by Dencker et al. (2006, 2008) defined 8-11 years old children’s moderate
physical activity as 3-6 METs and their vigorous physical activity as > METs.
Physical activity has a positive effect on cognition as well as brain structure and
function (Donnelly, Hillman, Castelli, Etnier, Lee, Tomporowski, Lambourne, & Szabo-Reed,
2016; Haverkamp, Wiersma, Vertessen, van Ewijk, Oosterlaan, & Hartman, 2020). Its impact
on cognitive functions has been widely studied (Lambourne, 2006; Chacón-Cuberos, Zurita-
Ortega, Ramírez-Granizo, & Castro-Sánchez, 2020). Such cognitive functions that benefit from
physical activity are attention, memory, and concentration. It is noteworthy that physical
activity tasks that feature higher cognitive demands and involve gross motor skills are more
effective on cognitive performance (Chacón-Cuberos et al., 2020).
A study by López-Vicente et al. (2017) showed that low physical activity levels at
preschool age could be associated with poorer working memory performance at primary school
age. The same study also showed that low physical activity levels at primary school age are
related to lesser working memory in adolescents, while highly intense and structured physical
activities are especially relevant for working memory enhancement in adolescence.
Also, sedentary behavior, such as increased screen time, has detrimental effects on
cognitive development during childhood (Carson, Kuzik, Hunter, Wiebe, Spence, Friedman,
Tremblay, Slater, & Hinkley, 2015). Therefore, obese and overweight children have poor
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working memory abilities (Christina, Sangeetha, Kumaresan, Varadharaju, & Hemachandrika,
2021) due to the fact that obesity, which is linked to an increased amount of time spent in
sedentary behaviors (Sahoo, Sahoo, Choudhury, Sofi, Kumar, & Bhadoria, 2015), affects
cognition through altering the brain structures and functions, as well as motor performance
(Christina et al., 2021).
Furthermore, chronic physical activity interventions can have larger effect sizes on a
broader range of cognitive outcomes in children and adolescents (Haapala, 2012; Haverkamp
et al., 2020). In addition, response times, during information processing, inhibitory control and
working memory tasks, are quicker in adolescents with a higher physical fitness, when
compared to their low-fit counterparts (Williams, Cooper, Dring, Hatch, Morris, Sunderland, &
Nevill, 2020).
However, despite the benefits of physical activity, globally, 81% of adolescents aged
11-17 years were insufficiently physically active in 2016. Notably, adolescent girls were less
active than adolescent boys, with 85% vs. 78% not meeting WHO recommendations of at least
60 minutes of moderate to vigorous intensity physical activity per day (World Health
Organization, 2020).
4.1.1. Physical activity - based working memory interventions
All the above benefits of physical activities for the working memory enhancement, as
well as the WHO statistics regarding the physical activity rates in children and adolescents,
confirm that the need for children’s and adolescents’ daily engagement in physical activity
becomes imperative. According to Guiney and Machado (2013), chronic aerobic exercise can
enhance children’s working memory capacity; in fact, Ludyga et al. (2018) showed that
adolescents’ daily engagement in a short aerobic and coordinative exercise program following
the school lunchtime break contributes to their working memory maintenance and task
In addition, by applying 10 weeks of 3 × 45 minutes of after-school cardiovascular
exercise and a motor-demanding activity for preadolescent children, Koutsandréou, Wegner,
Niemann, and Budde (2016) found a positive effect of both cardiovascular and motor exercises
on working memory in preadolescent children.
Another intervention study by Lind, Geertsen, Ørntoft, Madsen, Larsen, Dvorak, Ritz,
and Krustrup (2018) also reported positive effects on working memory performance after an
11-week intervention, the “FIFA 11 for Health” for Europe program, which comprised small-
sided football games, drills and on-pitch health education, and it combined cardiovascular
exercise and motor and cognition demands. Moreover, this study showed that a physical activity
program based on a well-established team game, such as football, can have a positive effect on
cognitive performance in preadolescent children. It is noteworthy that Chen, Chen, Chu, Liu,
and Chang (2017) observed that a multi-component exercise intervention involving a jump rope
can positively affect obese children’s cognitive functions.
Of great interest is a study conducted by Ruiz-Ariza, CasusoSuarez-Manzano, and
Martínez-López (2018), which reported positive effects of an 8-week intervention using the
augmented reality game “Pokemon GO” on cognitive performance and sociability in
adolescents aged 12-15 years. Augmented reality games allow players to interact with the world
through their device’s camera (Lanham, 2017), contributing to increased physical activity (Ni,
Hui, Li, Tam, Choy, Ma, Cheung, & Leung, 2019).
Finally, Chacón-Cuberos et al. (2020), considering the aforementioned studies of Chen
et al. (2017), Lind et al. (2018), and Ruiz-Ariza et al. (2018), detected two basic requirements
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for physical activity to generate positive effects on cognition. More specifically, the first lies in
the load of the intervention performed, involving a minimum of 150 minutes per week of work,
in which the intensity is moderate (Chen et al., 2017; Lind et al., 2018), while the second
requirement is related to the cognitive demands of the task to be performed, that is, a
cooperation sport with an opponent can contribute to more cognitive improvements (Ruiz-Ariza
et al., 2018).
4.2. ICT - based working memory interventions
It is broadly agreed that Information and Communications Technology (ICT) can
enhance students’ educational, social and cultural experiences (Drigas & Ioannidou, 2013) and
can contribute effectively to the learning process (Drigas et al., 2013; Chaidi, Drigas, &
Karagiannidis, 2021). The term “ICT” is defined as the study, design, development,
implementation, support or management of computer-based information systems in order
information to be converted, stored, protected, processed and retrieved” (Shuja, 2009).
In the field of education the term “ICT” refers to all types of technological means used
in teaching methods such as computers, tablets, interactive whiteboards (Galitskaya & Drigas,
2019), mobile applications (Drigas & Kokkalia, 2016; Karabatzaki, Stathopoulou, Kokkalia,
Dimitriou, Loukeri, Economou, & Drigas, 2018), artificial intelligence (AI) applications
(Drigas & Angelidakis, 2017), serious games (Kokkalia, Drigas, Economou, Roussos, & Choli,
2017). Prolonged exposure to technology and media devices probably has a great impact on
cognition (Alexopoulou, Batsou, & Drigas, 2020) that is the mental process of acquiring
knowledge and understanding (Titilayo, 2016), with which working memory is fundamentally
related (Bouchacourt & Buschman, 2019). Notably, computer-based tools, mobile training
apps, and video games could significantly contribute to cognitive improvement (Pappas et al.,
2018, 2019) and, thus, to working memory enhancement.
Taking into consideration that working memory is engaged during simultaneous
processing and storage of information, ICT use facilitates working memory capacity
amplification because it provides the necessary amount of repeated practice in simultaneous
processing and storage of information on a massive scale (García, Nussbaum, & Preiss, 2011).
Electronic tools for working memory training, such as Cogmed
(, are highly effective. In particular, Cogmed is used in schools to
enhance student’s learning performance (Drigas, Kokkalia, & Lytras, 2015). It consists of the
Cogmed JM and Cogmed RM types for children and the Cogmed QM type for adults (Shipstead,
Hicks & Engle, 2012) and includes visuo-spatial tests (e.g. “Asteroids”) and verbal memory
tasks (e.g. Input Module”) (Shipstead et al., 2012) that can be conducted in 25, 30 and 45
minute sessions over a period of five weeks (Aksayli, Sala & Gobet, 2019).
Video games also play a pivotal role in improving working memory capacity and
performance (Karyotaki & Drigas, 2015). More specifically, video games positively impact
visuo-spatial skills, which have been identified as a core part of working memory (García et al.,
2011); in fact, they allow individuals to exploit the potential of their visual working memory
(Blacker & Curby, 2014). In particular, research conducted by Nouchi and Kawashima (2014)
using a brain training video game called "Brain Age" (Nintendo Co. Limited, Kyoto, Japan),
also known as Dr. Kawashima’s Brain Training (Himmelmeier, Nouchi, Saito, Burin, Wiltfang,
& Kawashima, 2019) showed improved executive functions, enhanced working memory, and
increased processing speed.
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Furthermore, video games can be used effectively in school settings because they have
a particular goal that children must try to reach, as well as a faster speed than traditional games.
Children can understand instructions implicitly without reading them. Also, video games are
independent from physical laws, capture players’ attention and continue to do so as the game
builds a world with its own rules and regulations (Rosas, Nussbaum, Cumsille, Marianov,
Correa, Flores, Lagos, Lopez, López, Rodríguez, & Salinas, 2003).
Additionally, serious games, which are defined as a mental contest, played with a
computer in accordance with specific rules, that uses entertainment to further government or
corporate training, education, health, public policy, and strategic communication objectives
(Zyda, 2005), can be used effectively for working memory training (Boendermaker, Gladwin,
Peeters, Prins, & Wiers, 2018; Chaldogeridis & Tsiatsos, 2020).
5. Discussion and Conclusion
In this article, we presented the role of physical activity and ICT-based working
memory interventions as a strategic issue for the improvement of students’ learning
performance and thus their effective active presence at school and society. Because, nowadays,
there is a great need for students not to be evaluated by the nation as an economic asset (Moyle,
2010) but to be considered as its valuable members, who can significantly contribute to its
Working memory refers to our ability to maintain and manipulate information,
necessary for an action, for short periods of time in the order of seconds (Bhandari & Badre,
2016) and is closely associated with academic learning (Gathercole et al., 2006) as it plays a
crucial role in the formation of the learning process (Drigas & Pappas, 2017). Working memory
abilities in children and adolescents are benefited from physical activity, yielding higher
improvements by chronic physical activity interventions (Haapala, 2012; Haverkamp et al.,
2020). ICTs also significantly contribute to working memory enhancement and thus to the
improvement of learning outcomes.
Additionally, working memory training plays a pivotal role in the development of
metacognition, which is very important for the acquisition of knowledge (Drigas et al., 2017)
and thus the improvement of the academic performance (Mitsea & Drigas, 2019) (Drigas &
Karyotaki 2014). Furthermore, metacognition can be considered as the vehicle that could lead
to consciousness (Mitsea et al., 2019), which is very important for the improvement of an
individual’s quality of life.
To conclude, the catalytic role of working memory training in the development of
consciousness, that is, the higher metacognitive processes of control, regulation and adaptation
of the individual, according to the stratified model (8 Layer Model) of Drigas and Pappas
(2017), could trigger educators and policy makers towards the ideal planning of working
memory intervention programs adapted in school settings. Finally, taking into consideration the
contribution of physical activity and ICTs to children’s and adolescents’ working memory
abilities, physical activity and ICT-based working memory intervention programs that combine
cognitive demands, motor-demanding activities and cardiovascular exercises could be
incorporated into the school curriculum targeting the enhancement of school students’ working
memory and the improvement of their learning performance.
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Vol. 30, 200-213, April, 2022
ISSN: 2668-7798
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... In today's society, the need to change schools to build student participation is imperative. Therefore, schools must take a more innovative approach to learn and teaching to meet all student learning needs (Angelopoulou & Drigas, 2021). All resources must be utilized in such a way. ...
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Learning burnout must get serious attention from the teacher so that the learning he does becomes effective and efficient. This study aims to discover the strategies used to overcome learning saturation for early childhood at school. This type of research uses a qualitative case study approach, an inquiry method that emphasizes the search for meaning, understanding, concepts, characteristics, symptoms, symbols or descriptions of a phenomenon in the research setting, prioritizing quality, using several methods, and presenting narratively. Data collection techniques were carried out through interviews, observation and documentation. The data analysis technique was carried out through three stages: data reduction, data presentation, and conclusion drawing. The research and discussion results show that strategies for overcoming learning saturation in early childhood have been carried out very well and optimally. The use of methods, media, learning strategies and interactions with students is planned and systematic to reduce learning boredom in the classroom.
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The value of students' motivation with learning disabilities is significant and their enhancement is a primary goal for learning achievement. Students with learning disabilities are constantly increasing and have less persistence in academic exercises, showing a lack of motivation, while motivation is very much related to the learning process and learning achievements. This article is a literature review investigating the motivation of students with learning disabilities, the importance of enhancing intrinsic motivation, the factors that influence motivation, and the impact of educational technology on the motivation of students with learning disabilities. The results showed that environments that aim to motivate and support students are more effective in enhancing students' learning achievement and motivation, with other findings considering ICT as an important motivation for learning and work, but also a reason for improving the achievement of students, promoting their motivation and improving their attitude towards learning.
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We present a pioneering tool in the field of cognitive and mental health promotion that can be integrated with IoT devices to address the need for an adaptable and immersive training experience in formal and informal learning environments, such as large scale organizations and businesses, schools and universities. It is based on the dialogic form in acquiring knowledge, introduced by Socrates as a training and teaching methodology. The current tool is the product of a transdisciplinary research in the field of ICTs as reflected on Cognitive Science, Neuroscience, Education and the Business Sector. It is also part of an innovative model of personal and professional development, called the 9-Layered Model of Giftedness, which originates mainly in Plato's prompt to discover the nature of excellence and the ability to teach excellence through self-reflection and self-awareness. 1 Introduction This app aims at providing a digital tool towards training and assessment of higher cognitive and metacognitive skills to the benefit of a person's personal and professional development. The architecture of this tool is based on the 9 Layered Model of Giftedness, which is an integrated theory of human wellness and societal prosperity [1]. In addition, the architecture of the tool provides a tailor-made user experience as it is structured on a voluminous menu, encapsulating the 21st Century Skills of the European Skills Agenda [2] in combination with the Sustainable Development Goals of the United Nations by 2030 [3]. More specifically, the app offers users the capability to take a test that makes an assessment on their cognitive and metacognitive skills in order to give recommendations on their training needs. Therefore, the app gives users feedback as a navigation route, following a string of replies. The original conception of the app was founded on the Ancient Greek Philosopher, Socrates and his method of teaching and thinking [4]. Socrates made questions and sought the answers from his students in an attempt to let them discover what is the truth. For that purpose, Socrates made inquiring and critical thinking questions. Our app induces a holistic perspective in human evolution as we encourage users to embrace a new model of intelligence that encompasses a person's capacities, abilities and skills in combination with certain values and self-beliefs. As a result, our app aims to introduce our theoretical model to a broader audience as well as to emphasize on personal development as a means of social evolution [5]. In addition, our model addresses personal and professional development as an individualized goal for any person that has the will and the perseverance to learn and improve oneself. Thus, if this applies wider, our society stands a better chance to thrive in the future.
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According to researchers, the transition of all students from primary to secondary education represents a passage, a challenging change, but also an opportunity for change with consequences for the student's cognitive, emotional, and psychosocial areas of development. This transition also happens to coincide with the person's critical developmental stage, the start of adolescence. The issue is tackled from a multidisciplinary perspective and affects a large number of teachers, parents, psychologists, specialist educators, and most importantly the kids themselves. This study conducts a bibliographic assessment of the literature on the transitions of individuals with special educational needs, the challenges they encounter, and the contribution of ICT to a successful transfer. from the general or special school units of Primary Education in the comparable secondary school units Education. Keywords: Learning readiness; Transitions; Students with special educational needs.
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One of the key elements of a person's growth is their social skills, and motivation is a necessary ingredient for both their development and progress, especially for individuals with ASD who show deficits in this area. Social interactions and relationships that emphasize understanding, involvement, and engagement between individuals are driven by motivations. Special Education and Training can achieve the aforementioned objectives by utilizing ICT and a variety of instructional methodologies. The inclusion of students with disabilities in regular classes is encouraged by modern pedagogy. a public, open-door school. New technologies are a tool that helps in this goal by changing conventional training into instruction for everyone. Consistent training that considers the unique traits, abilities, passions, and experiences of each student supports the creation and implementation of differentiated teaching, enabling all students to learn at their own pace and on their schedule. The scenario of personalized instruction in a health education program is presented in this essay. Keywords. New Technologies, Differentiated teaching, Students with special needs, Autism spectrum disorder ( ASD ), and Health Education.
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_We present a pioneering framework in the field of education based on inclusive teaching and learning practices and techniques in the classroom. Adaptable and immersive learning experiences centered on the enhancement of cognitive skills throughout the school curriculum can provide a positive whole school ethos. The current framework as a product of transdisciplinary research in ICTs, Cognitive Science and Education sets the example for the implementation of blended learning environments, combining both physical and virtual learning experiences to set the ground for inclusive and flexible educational curriculum.
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The role of executive dysfunction in autism spectrum disorders (ASD) is critical for guiding diagnosis and intervention. Autism spectrum disorder (ASD) is a neurodevelopmental disorder defined by deficits in social communication and interaction and restricted and repetitive patterns of behavior. Evidence show that ICTs contribute to the reduction of stress in children with ASD because of their adaptive, playful and predictable digital environment. Mobile apps and robots have been found to work beneficially by helping with stressful situations.
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Today's pedagogy supports the inclusion of people with special needs in the general classroom. An Open School, A school for all. The new Technologies are a tool that helps in this direction by turning standard teaching into teaching for everyone. Uniform teaching that adapts to the peculiarities, abilities, interests, and experiences of each student. It helps create and implement differentiated instruction, giving all students the ability to approach knowledge at their own pace and time. In this work, a scenario of differentiated teaching in an environmental project is presented. Keywords.New Technologies, Differentiated teaching, and students with special needs.
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In recent years, worldwide and in our country, the view has been established that all students, regardless of any element of differentiation, special need or characteristic related to national, cultural or social identity, should have equal learning opportunities in one school for all. The use of Information and Communication Technologies (ICT) contributes significantly to the learning process. Especially for students with special educational needs, ICT provides rich educational experiences. The following work refers to ICT in the field of application of Special Education, in assistive technology, educational sortware, which provides opportunities to approach knowledge, socialization of individuals and removal of physical barriers to access to knowledge of students with special educational needs .
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The amount of information which can be stored in the human brain is limited and dependent on memory capacity. Over the last few years there has been a trend in training cognitive skills, not only to prevent cognitive decline, which is inevitable as a person grows older, but also to increase or at least preserve mental abilities that will allow a person to function at a higher cognitive level. Memory is one of those key aspects among cognitive skills that has a significant role in a person’s mental performance. Specifically, focus is given to Working Memory (WM), as evidence has shown that it can be increased by applying targeted interventions. An intervention program like this is the main object of this current paper. Using a Serious Game (SG), we designed and created a video game which targets WM training. Its effectiveness was tested and evaluated through an evaluation process where forty people participated in a seven-week training program. Post-results showed that participants had an increase in their WM performance, especially those who had lower scores at the pre-test, while those with high pre-test scores just preserved their initial status. Additionally, all participants agreed that the game is fun and enjoyable to play and that it helps them to increase WM performance.
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Background Whilst an acute bout of exercise has been shown to enhance subsequent cognition, including in adolescents, the effects of team games (of which Football is the most popular) has received little attention. Therefore, this study examined: the effect of an acute bout of outdoor Football activity on information processing, inhibitory control, working memory and circulating brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) in adolescents; the effect of physical fitness on cognition and; the moderating effect of physical fitness on the acute exercise responses. Methods Following familiarisation, 36 adolescents (16 girls) took part in two trials (60-min Football and 60-min seated rest) separated by 7-d in a counterbalanced, crossover design. Information processing and inhibitory control (Stroop Test), and working memory (Sternberg Paradigm) were assessed 30-min before exercise/rest and immediately, 45- and 90-min post-exercise/rest. Capillary blood samples were obtained before exercise/rest and up to 120-min post-exercise/rest. The median split of distance covered on the MSFT was used to divide the group into high- and low-fit groups. Results Performance on the cognitive function tasks was similar between Football and seated rest (trial*time interactions; all p > .05). However, the high-fit group had overall quicker response times on both levels of the Stroop Task and all three levels of the Sternberg Paradigm (main effect of fitness; all p < .001). Furthermore, the exercise-cognition relationship was moderated by physical fitness, with improvements in working memory response times seen post-exercise, only in the high-fit group (trial*time*fitness interaction, p < .05). Circulating BDNF was unaffected by the Football activity and physical fitness ( p > .05). Conclusion The present study shows that higher levels of physical fitness are beneficial for cognitive function and provides novel evidence that an ecologically valid, and popular, form of exercise is beneficial for working memory following exercise, in high-fit participants only.
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The aim was to provide a meta-analysis of studies investigating the effects of physical activity interventions on cognitive outcomes and academic performance in adolescents or young adults. A systematic review with meta-analysis was performed using the following databases: Embase, ERIC, MEDLINE, PsycINFO and Web of Science. Studies had to meet the following criteria: controlled study design, investigating the effects of physical activity interventions on cognitive outcomes and academic performance in healthy adolescents or young adults (12–30 years). Results showed that acute interventions (n=44) significantly improved processing speed (ES=0.39), attention (ES=0.34) and, inhibition (ES=0.32). In a subsequent meta-regression, shorter duration of intervention was significantly associated with greater improvements in attention (β=−0.02) and cognitive flexibility (β=−0.04), whereas age, percentage of boys, intensity and dose were not. Chronic interventions (n=27) significantly improved processing speed (ES=0.30), attention (ES=0.50), cognitive flexibility (ES=0.19), working memory (ES=0.59) and language skills (ES=0.31). In the meta-regression, higher percentage of boys was significantly associated with greater improvements in attention (β=0.02) and working memory (β=0.01) whereas age, duration, frequency, dose and load were not. In conclusion, acute and chronic physical activity interventions might be a promising way to improve several cognitive outcomes and language skills in adolescents and young adults.
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La práctica de actividad física constituye un medio esencial en la mejora de la salud física y mental. Su influencia en diversos aspectos cognitivos como la atención, memoria o concentración ha sido ampliamente estudiada, pudiendo guardar una estrecha relación con el rendimiento académico. El objetivo de este estudio consiste en la realización de una revisión sistemática sobre la relación existente entre práctica de actividad física y rendimiento académico en escolares. Se emplea como principal motor de búsqueda el repositorio Web of Science (WOS), empleando como criterio la selección de estudios de tipo longitudinal y experimental publicados en los últimos cinco años. Se obtuvo una muestra total de 23 trabajos de investigación, en los cuales se aplicaron programas de intervención basados en ejercicio físico para la mejora del rendimiento académico o parámetros relacionados. Como principales hallazgos, se ha podido observar la necesidad de prescribir actividad física o ejercicio físico con unos parámetros de volumen e intensidad adecuados, pues una carga insuficiente no se relaciona con el rendimiento académico y/o cognitivo. Asimismo, las tareas de motricidad gruesa y los deportes en equipo resultan más eficaces al implicar mayores demandas cognitivas. Las áreas de matemáticas y pensamiento lógico fueron las más beneficiadas.
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p>In the last few decades, there has been growing research interest in investigating the positive relationship between metacognitive strategies, conscious learning, and achievement. However, the lack of a uniform classification indicates a need to map the different approaches, so as to discover the cornerstone strategies that result in ascending the knowledge and consequently the consciousness pyramid. The outcome of this study place executive functions, self-monitoring, and adaptation at the heart of these strategies. </p
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Background: Elderly people are affected by processes leading to decline in various aspects of daily living that impair their quality of life. Regarding neurological aspects, executive functions have been shown to be valuable for daily life and to slow decline during aging. Most intervention studies intended to improve cognitive functions during aging specifically address long-term destructive processes and countermeasures. However, to an increasing degree, studies also investigate the acute benefits that prove to be useful for daily life, such as physical exercise or video games in the form of exercise video gaming (“exergaming”). Because little is known about the change in cognitive ability following acute intervention of a combination of physical exercise and video gaming, especially for older people, this work is designed as an attempt to address this matter. Methods: This study is a randomized crossover controlled trial to test the response to an acute bout of high-intensity physical exercise followed by a short session with a brain training (Brain Age) video game in physically active and cognitively healthy older adults (60–70 years). The response is measured using Stroop task performance (cognitive task for executive function) and related brain activity assessed with functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI). The control conditions are low-intensity physical exercise and Tetris for video gaming. Discussion: This study is intended to provide insight into the alteration of executive function and its related brain activity from an acute intervention with a combination of physical exercise and video gaming in older people. The protocol might not be implementable in daily life to improve cognitive abilities. However, the results can support future studies that investigate cognition and the combination of physical exercise and video gaming. Moreover, it can provide real-life implications. Trial registration: This trial was registered in The University Hospital Medical Information Network Clinical Trials Registry (UMIN000033054). Registered 19 July 2018,
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The research area of brain plasticity studies indicates that individuals can train and improve their cognitive abilities throughout life. In addition, more and more computerized training tools are presented in recent studies. The purpose of this study is to represent studies of the last decade in the field of cognitive training with the use of Information and Communication Tech-nologies, to record the cognitive improvement techniques used, as well as to evaluate the effectiveness of these intervention programs. As indicated by the literature review, computer-based tools, mobile training apps and video games could be used in intervention studies for cognitive improve-ment. In addition, cognitive training techniques seem to be significantly ef-fective for the cognitive improvement of healthy or cognitive impaired in-dividuals.
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STEM is an educational approach to the integration of science, mathematics, engineering and technology which are taught as nunnery through real life-inspired activities. In this paper we present the latest trends in webbased and online STEM education. Βy exploiting connectivity, increasing the means that can be shared online and developing cooperation between people from distance, new educational paradigms are immerging. We chose to present applications from 2013 onwards in order to highlight the latest trends in STEM online education and have categorize them according the technologies used in their implementation. Keywords—
Introduction: Obesity is not just a term but a threat faced by the younger generation. It affects the vital systems of our body and very importantly impairs the cognitive functions of our brain. Lack of exercise, lethargy, increased usage of electronic gadgets is some of the notable reasons for childhood obesity. This study has been designed to find out how obesity is playing a role in a child’s short term memory skills. Materials and Methods: A Cross sectional epidemiological study was conducted among 125 secondary school children from random urban south Indian population. The students were asked to fill in their general details along with height, weight, hip circumference, waist circumference and asked to play a set of matching games and put in their score to measure working memory. Results: Association between corresponding memory task scores and BMI indicates a strong negative correlation (r = -.008) and (r = -.07). Conclusion: The present results therefore indicate that there is an association between obesity and poorer working memory performance in secondary school children. Therefore to conclude, the extent to which children are physically active is influenced by a multiple and interrelated factors. Addressing physical inactivity and its contribution to childhood overweight obesity requires a broad and holistic approach.