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Cognitive and Working Memory TrainingPerspectives from Psychology, Neuroscience, and Human Development$
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Jared M. Novick, Michael F. Bunting, Michael R. Dougherty, and Randall W. Engle

Print publication date: 2019

Print ISBN-13: 9780199974467

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: January 2020

DOI: 10.1093/oso/9780199974467.001.0001

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PRINTED FROM OXFORD SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (oxford.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright Oxford University Press, 2021. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in OSO for personal use. date: 08 December 2021

Fundamental Questions Surrounding Efforts to Improve Cognitive Function Through Video Game Training

Fundamental Questions Surrounding Efforts to Improve Cognitive Function Through Video Game Training

Chapter:
(p.432) 9 Fundamental Questions Surrounding Efforts to Improve Cognitive Function Through Video Game Training
Source:
Cognitive and Working Memory Training
Author(s):

Adam Eichenbaum

Daphne Bavelier

C. Shawn Green

Publisher:
Oxford University Press
DOI:10.1093/oso/9780199974467.003.0009

Neural plasticity, or the ability of the brain to reorganize its structure and activity, is of critical importance. For nearly 50 years, the dominant framework in the field of learning and neural plasticity held that the brain was capable of truly large-scale changes only early in life. However, emerging evidence suggests that plasticity that had assumed to be “lost” due to age, injury, or disease may be at least partially re-established via genetic, pharmacological, and/or behavioral means. Yet, while it is true that humans retain a significant capacity to learn throughout the life span, a second roadblock frequently stands in the way of translating learning gains into practical real-world benefits. This obstacle is the “curse of specificity.” While it is true that, given appropriate training, humans will tend to improve on almost any task, the improvements that are observed are often confined to the exact training task, with little to no benefits of the training being observed for even seemingly very similar tasks. This chapter discusses the trend toward task-specific training on one working memory task, as well as the finding that action video game training does appear to lead to more generalizable improvements in cognitive performance.

Keywords:   neural plasticity, video-game training, development, methodology, learning to learn, working memory training

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